Sol Duc Falls

Sol Duc Falls

Olympic National Forest

We did this hike July of 2015, it has to be one of my Top 10 For Families! The walk to the falls is short great for young children. You can continue on the Lovers Lane trail to make it a longer hike for older children. The trail is full of giant trees, bridges, waterfalls and FUN!!

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  1. The Sol Duc valley is very easy to find, right off the 101 follow the signs you have to pay a National Park entrance fee. We bought a pass good for all National Parks one year for $80.00. Follow the road it literately ends in the parking lot for the Sol Duc Falls. During the summer the parking lot is busy,when we first came in it looked full but as we made our way around a spot opened up. Even if it looks full don't worry!Along the road you'll see many beautiful spots to stop and enjoy the view! Easy to find are the Sol Duck Hot Springs Resort and Sol Duck Camping
  2. Bathrooms are good. As you enter the park I saw one Vault toilet at the second turnout. In the parking lot for The Falls are two more vault toilets. We did the full loop at the halfway point you are at the Hot Springs and they have bathrooms in the lodge that are nice and clean, however, busy. We ended up using the bathrooms in the campground on the loop back. They were very nice and clean.Along the path you'll see three. Overall bathrooms are not a problem!
  3. I love this hike for families! The trail to the Falls is wide, paved and perfect for young children. On our way up I saw some young boys sitting in a giant tree stump planing their lookout point! There are a few bridges and the Falls themselves are steep keep a hand of the young ones. As always at the falls there were some who climb the rocks and basically turn on my worry button.Teach your children it's not Disneyland you can slip and fall. Respect the forest by staying on the trail! There is plenty of space to view the falls from many angles!
  4. We did the full loop honestly this is for older children. I say this because it's 6 miles total and the path is natural with areas of steep cliffs. That being said it was mostly flat with only a few climbs.  The best part it felt like we were the only ones, only pasted one other lady. My family said it felt like Jurassic Park,we found our self's running from "Raptors" through a tall fern meadow! Evey time I think I have seen my favorite spot in the Olympic Forest I find a new one. Until the next hike this is my favorite!
 

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Rattlesnake Ledge – Snoqualmie Region

Rattlesnake Ledge

We did this hike in April of 2015, this was the hike that gave me the idea for this website! Before going we read it was very easy, However when we got there we realized although not super hard it was far from easy!

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Rattlesnake Ledge Trailhead
        Take I-90 to Exit 32. Go south on 436th Ave. SE, turning into Cedar Falls Rd. SE - follow this main road 3.1 miles to the parking area for Rattlesnake Lake. To reach the trail follow an old roadbed that circles the lake to the right (as you look at it). You do need a Discovery Pass to park inside.As you drive down to the entrance there is parking along the road for free. Follow the signs to the trail head.
  1. They do have Bathrooms, they are vault toilets. On the day we visited all the toilets were VERY DIRTY!!! In fact I recommend stopping before you head into the park! Again this was why I started this site things you want to know before you start your hike! As I said before this hike is not easy but worth the climb! The day we visited was a beautiful sunny Northwest day and the crowd on the trail was huge. Many families of all ages, and lots of dogs. Although crowded it was fun sharing the experience with so many. When you reach the top it's a beautiful lookout over the lake.It was at this point my husband and I went into worry overload. The crowd was large jumping on rocks and there are NO rails of any kind it's a shear drop. Whit all the dogs, squirrels and small children I was afraid  someone would fall. So much so we had to leave and walk down, much to the disappointment of my daughter who was loving the excitement of it all. Over all it was beautiful and I will do it again just on a less crowded day, like a week day on a cloudy day. My Daughter,the adventurer, said this is one of her favorite spots and can't wait to do it again! teresas iphone photos 075 teresas iphone photos 069 teresas iphone photos 065 teresas iphone photos 068
           

  Continue reading "Rattlesnake Ledge – Snoqualmie Region"

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Tunnel Creek Trail #841

Olympic National Forest

Tunnel Creek Trail #841

 
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Let me start by saying today's adventure is for families with older children. We had a great time and ran out of time so we were unable to complete it, looks like we'll be going back!

 
  1. Be warned the road going to the trail head is part of the adventure! It starts paved then moves into a gravel one lane road, it took us longer than we had planned to navigate the road in. There were signs leading you to the trails (there are three) that were very easy to find and follow. We started the day with a plan to do the Lower Quilcene Trail but do to time chose the Tunnel Trail. Part of why I say this is for older children is the isolation, no bathroom, few turnouts and it takes time. For older children it's part of the fun, you really get the feeling like your all alone! No parking pass required and there is plenty of parking.
  2. There are NO Bathrooms! It's best to stop in the town of Quilcene. There is a Ranger Station right off the 101 as you are leaving town, it's a good place to stop use bathrooms and get maps. There are many trails to do in this area!
  3. This trail is well marked it is a bit of a climb, the posted sign read 20% incline. No problem for my husband and children, for me it was slow going. As with every hike you go as far as you can and you can always turn around. This walk was fun and a little spooky, I have a thing for Bigfoot,always looking for him, in this forest I felt like he was watching me! All in all a great hike but I  need to give it more time next time we try this!
 

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Fabric Pennant Banner

Fun New Classroom Window

Fabric Pennant Banner

 
Before, very boring
Before, very boring
The After is so much fun!
The After is so much fun!
Our classroom has a Frog Pond Theme, using pre cut fabric squares made it easy to find colors and patterns that worked well together. I bought to much so I am looking to see where else I can add a fabric pennant banner!        

What you need

windows 032 Quilters Pre- cut fabric squares Ribbon Small binder clips Ruler chalk
Open fabric to form a square
Open fabric to form a square
             
Use the chalk to draw a line on fabric to form a Triangle.
Use the chalk to draw a line on fabric to form a Triangle.
             
Cut on the chalk lines.
Cut on the chalk lines.
             
When opened up it should form a Diamond
When opened up it should form a Diamond
                 
Use Ribbon to drape across. Hang fabric over ribbon and secure with a binder clip on each corner.
Use Ribbon to drape across. Hang fabric over ribbon and secure with a binder clip on each corner.
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Graduation Cupcakes

Graduation Cupcakes

 

I saw some like this on pinterest and decided to give it a try for our party!

Our school colors were orange and black so that was the theme of the party decorations!

   

ashleysgradparty 001    To Start

I used 4 boxes of Orange Cake mix to make the cupcakes. 4 Orange frosting containers Oreo cookies for the tops Reeses for the bottom Mini M&Ms for the button on the top of hat Frosting bag with round small tip     ashleysgradparty 004      To assemble each cap, fill a frosting bag and use a small round tip. attach the cookie to the upside down Reeses with frosting To make the tassel, I found it easier to start on the bottom and work up to the center. At first I did this separate but they broke when I moved them to the cupcake. Lesson learned assemble the cap, attach to the cupcake and then add your tassel. Put the mini M&M in the center.

  ashleysgradparty 012    They were a cute addition to the party and very easy to make!              

Class Name Book

Class Name Book

 Three years ago I got lucky and found these two orange magnetic  boards at Ikea for .99 each, this started my Class Name Book. Before the first day of school I use the magnetic letters to spell each child's name take a photo,print it out and put it in a small photo book I bought at the dollar store. On the first day of school I take a photo and add their face to the name in the book. Most of the children in my class stay in our program and move up to the next class, I keep their photos in the back of the book. This has been a great way for each child to not only learn their name but their classmates as well. It is always in our classroom and I find the children love to read it like a book!

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I Spy Ocean

I Spy Ocean

I Spy Shells

To go along with our ocean theme I added sand from California with shells. The kids loved the feel of the sand since most of our local beaches are rocky. Every time I go home to visit I collect some more sand!

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I Spy Foam Fishing

I have a shower curtain that I pull across the back to protect the wall. When using the foam fish we found you could stick them to the curtain after you caught your fish!

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Coffee Filter Planet

Coffee Filter Planet

What you need:

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Coffee Filter any size, Paint , Paint brush, Yellow Construction Paper (cut into strips)
 

       
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Paint your planet and while it's still wet add your "rings". I use a plastic mat for each child to paint on, that way when it's dry it pops right off. Find a window to decorate!
               
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I always have a group of books available for children.
             
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As you can see my guys really loved the "rings"
             
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I had to cut more while they were working on their planets!
             
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I always love to see how each child makes it their own!!
           

Bottle cap Letters

Bottle Cap Letters

ABC Book

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Bottle Cap Letters Letter BThis book is a fun way to start recognizing letters, sounds and putting them together to spell words. I use this in my class to go along with the letter of the week. I used a simple print shop program to make my pages. Save your bottle tops, I used white water caps. With a sharpie write the letter, make sure you have enough to spell every word in your book. You can choose what you would like to spell, I keep ours in ours ABC center.

   

Inspiration

Check out these Great Bottle Cap ideas!

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Lake Crescent Spruce Railroad Trail

Lake Crescent Spruce Railroad Trail

This was such a fun trail, we did this on the fourth of July so needless to say it was a bit crowded. That being said we had the best time,every person we passed on the trail said hi with a smile. So I name this the friendliest trail we have been on yet! The road to get here is narrow don't be scared away it's worth it!! Most of the hikers were swimming at the spot known to locals as Devils Punchbowl. A place where a bridge crosses over on the day we visited there were people jumping off the bridge and tall cliffs, I would not recommend the tall cliff jumps I could not watch they were making the mom in me scared! The water is the bluest I have seen in Washington! It was a very hot day and we were looking forward to a swim in the lake, walking farther down the trail we found the perfect spot off the trail to swim and have fun. All along the way you could see other groups doing the same. However you still felt private! Do to the time we were not able to do the entire trail. As with all trails they are as long and as hard as you want them to be! The only downer to this day was the bugs and a bee sting, although we carry a small first aid kit I had only plastic tweezers , note to self I will now add metal tweezers to the pack. Everyone had a great time and we are sure to go back and finish the trail!

 

  1. Easy to find Approaching from Port Angeles take the 101 for 17 miles to the Olympic National Park boundary, you will not need to pay any fees. take E Beach road, this is a narrow road but there is room for two cars. Turn right onto East Beach Road, which will be signed for the East Beach of the Log Cabin Resort. Follow road for a little more than three miles and turn left onto Boundary Creek Road, signed for the Spruce Railroad Trail. Follow Boundary Creek Road for just under a mile to the eastern trailhead. Amazingly we did not get lost and found it right away!
  2. Yes they have one bathroom at the trailhead! At the time of our visit it was nice and clean for a composting toilet!
  3. The trail was well marked and for the most part easy. I only had trouble on the way back with the slight inclines and tired legs from swimming! There were hikers of all ages and abilities as well as mountain bikers!
 

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