Tastes of Summer: Puget Sound Farmers Markets

Farmers markets were always a big part of our lives before the pandemic hit — we went to the Ballard Market on Sunday for naan and daal, picked up our meat from Skagit River Ranch, our veggies from Kirsop Farm, and an occasional bouquet of flowers to brighten our table.

When COVID started, the markets shut down and we got our fix by pre-ordering items for street corner pickup. They reopened and I was so happy to return that I didn’t mind (and maybe welcomed?) leaving the kids at home with Peter while I took a masked up solo trip for necessities.

Now that things are easing back towards normal, we had our first family visit to the Columbia City Farmers Market (Wednesday afternoons from 3-7 p.m.). It was a scorching hot afternoon and eating a picnic of food I didn’t cook in a park (thank you, Geni’s Ethiopian!) followed by Seattle Pops was the perfect way to kick off summer.

I wrote an article for Seattle’s Child recently with a round-up of 10 local farmers markets that have perfect picnic provisions (say that 10 times fast) and a park nearby to enjoy them.

There were too many markets (including some recommended via my Instagram), so I created a Google Map to add more. Feel free to use it to plan you own market dinners this summer!


Puget Sound Express Whale Watching

When Julia turned 2, we took her on a little weekend getaway to Whidbey Island. We stayed in an AirBnB in Langley, ate dinner at our favorite restaurant in Coupeville (The Oystercatcher) and went on a lovely whale watching trip where we saw 5 gray whales. James turned 2 this year, so I wanted to try to make whale watching a tradition by booking a family tour again.

The owners of Mystic Sea Charters — the company we used previously— chose to retire and sell their business to Puget Sound Express, so I gave them a call to check on their COVID protocols.

Satisfied that they seemed reasonable (roughly the risk profile of tented outdoor dining), we rounded up the vaccinated grandparents and headed out on what ended up being a gorgeous bluebird day.

I wrote about the experience for Seattle’s Child and it’s available here.

Have you done COVID-era tours? What protocols matter most to you?