Hot Air Balloon Ride

For my 25th birthday one of my bucket list dreams came true…I went on a hot air balloon ride! Click the video below to watch our adventure in the sky.

My mom and I woke up around 4am and drove to Ballooning Snohomish. We arrived about 30 minutes after sunrise, checked in and then drove to Harvey Field nearby where we began setting up the balloons. Once the balloons were laid out, they used a powerful fan to fill them up with cold air. Then they replaced the fan with propane burners to heat the air until it became hot enough to lift the baskets off the ground. The whole process took about 15 minutes.

Then we were ready for take off! Hot air balloons float with the wind and the wind moves in different directions at different elevations. So the wind patterns dictate the flight path for the day. Our pilot controlled the temperature of the balloon using a propane burner to heat the air inside and guided us along the path.

The views were breathtaking! It was magical being so high up in the sky and looking down on the world. We traveled for about an hour and saw panoramic views of the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges and the beautiful farmlands of the Snohomish valleys.

My mom and I got lucky because there were only two other people in the basket with us (another mom and daughter). Depending on how many people book a flight that day you could have a small group like we did or a larger group of 8 + the pilot. One thing to mention is the balloon ride is very noisy (from the hot air inflating and deflating). We got used to it after a bit but if you have sensitive hearing I recommend bringing ear plugs.

We landed in Bob’s Corn Maze (a field nearby in Snohomish) and then we were driven back to our home base where we had champagne and cake. A special day with my mama, beautiful views, fun adventure, lasting memories. Definitely recommend going on a hot air balloon ride. You will have the best time!

Leavenworth Weekend Getaway

If you are looking for a quick and cozy weekend getaway that’s not too far from the city, Leavenworth might just be the perfect place. About a 2 hour drive from Seattle, Leavenworth is a Bavarian-styled village in the Cascade Mountains. The village is of full of incredible buildings, great restaurants-featuring many German style foods and beer, local wineries and shopping boutiques, making this stop not only unique but also beautiful. We’ve traveled to Leavenworth a handful of times and always have had the best experience. This time we went to celebrate our friends 30th birthday, and it did not disappoint.

Tommy and I hit the road around 2pm. On the way to Leavenworth, we stopped at Sultan Bakery to pick up some sweets for the car ride. They have the BEST cookies (we got three) and amazing desserts. Highly recommend if you have never been.

We arrived in Leavenworth around 4pm and went to our first stop, Icicle Ridge Winery to start our weekend. From there we went to Icicle Brewing Company (definitely an icicle theme here) and had some German beer and a hot pretzel with cheese sauce…so good! They recently remodeled the brewery to make it more comfortable to sit inside (Tommy sat in a ski lift/converted to chair swing-loved it). They also have live music every Friday and Saturday night!

Even though we came to Leavenworth in February, all the Christmas decorations and lights were still up throughout the town. It felt like a little winter wonderland.

We rented a beautiful, secluded cabin that was about 10 minutes from town and stayed there with 10 of our friends to celebrate. We ate a lot of food, played a bunch of games, went hot tubbing, went on a little hike, played with our friends pup-Knox, watched movies in the theater room and enjoyed hanging out at the cabin with each other.

On Sunday we packed up, checked out and ventured back to town for breakfast. We went to Louie’s Cafe (amazing bloody marry) and took a short scenic walk along the Wenatchee River. Overall, a great place to celebrate a 30th birthday and a great place to travel to for a quick weekend getaway!