We spent our Labor Day weekend visiting my aunt (my mom's younger sister) in Nanaimo, a city on Vancouver Island. We left at 9:00 on Saturday morning and stopped for lunch in Bellingham at 11:00. We went to a playground then ate at Fiamma Burger and Mallard Ice Cream. All of downtown Bellingham is so cute! We reached the border shortly after getting back in the car, but thankfully both girls were asleep during the hour-long wait for customs. From there, it was just a short drive to the ferry. We had a reservation for the 3:00 sailing, but you have to arrive an hour beforehand.
The ferry terminal was really nice, though, with a play structure for the kids and everything. Once you're on the boat, it's a two-hour ride to the island. We took in the views from the deck, colored, and let the girls watch a couple episodes of Daniel Tiger.
We arrived at my aunt and uncle's house just in time for dinner and then bedtime for the little ones. We went to the 9:00 Mass the next morning and stopped for a doughnut at Tim Horton's afterwards. We drove up to Coombs to have lunch at the Old Country Market - it's claim to fame is the goats living on the roof. After looking around at the really awesome selection of wooden toys, we grabbed some dessert. Claire and Maggie chose ice cream while the rest of us indulged in the famous Nanaimo bars.
Back in Nanaimo, we headed to their waterfront park to fly Claire's kite. She got one for her birthday back in March and we've kept forgetting to try it out. She was in heaven!
We went watched the sea planes taking off and the crabbers catching some dinner on the dock before letting the kids loose on the playground. Here was our only picture, out of many attempts, with all of us girls looking at the camera.
We ordered pizza for dinner and tucked our exhausted children into bed. On Monday morning, we had to leave at 8:30 to drive the two hours to Victoria in order to arrive the required ninety minutes before our noon ferry. We went through customs and walked around the gift shop before randomly bumping into some fellow parishioners from church. On board the ferry, we ate our packed lunch, entertained the girls with more coloring and Daniel Tiger, and took in the amazing views of the San Juan Islands.
Two hours later, we arrived in Anacortes, Washington. We went through customs again and drove the two hours back home, stopping for dinner at Cafe Rio on the way. We weren't lucky enough to get a killer whale sighting like on our last ferry to the island, but it was still a fantastic weekend.