Travels! Orcas Island, Part Two

Here’s Part Two of our lovely camping trip, and this post is super-duper packed and long, so let’s get to it!

After a wonderful but tiring day one, we got up and had some breakfast. It was pretty chilly in the mornings, so it was a good excuse to wear a moose and bear hat… and also to wrap Milo up like Mother Theresa.


We took it pretty easy that morning, while Bruce went on a bajillion mile hike, and I ended up taking an epic nap. One of my favorite parts of camping is the naps. There’s something about falling asleep in a tent, with the sunlight warming it up just enough to be cozy (but not too hot), and taking a nap with nature surrounding you. It’s very relaxing and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Eventually we played some wiffleball and tossed around our Nerf football, which was pretty fun… until Matt decided to whip the ball at me, throwing it over my head and into the lake. It was pretty entertaining watching him try to figure out how to get back. Fortunately the wind was blowing in our direction and the ball floated back, along with Matt pulling it in with a stick. It was SO NICE to have enough room at our site to be able to play frisbee, wiffleball and football.

We made out way into town later for some dinner, as it’s pretty much tradition that we do one non-campfire meal every summer. After doing a little research, and seeing that this place called the New Leaf Cafe had good Yelp reviews, we decided to go there for a nice relaxing dinner. They didn’t open until 5:30 for dinner, so we went to a cute little pet store (and found a cheeseburger for Milo, which are impossible to find!), and then a jewelry store we I got new pearl earrings on the cheap. The lady was pleasant and had cute dogs, but then annoyed me when after we told her we were eating at the New Leaf, she asked if we could afford that. Um, yes, and if we couldn’t we wouldn’t be going there? Ugh.

Ho-ly. CRAP. I have never had a better overall meal (appetizer, dinner, dessert) in my life. It was so good I’m still thinking about it. It also helped that we were seated with a beautiful view of the ocean.

To start, Matt ordered this crazy drink called the El Diablo. It had silver tequila, which was house infused with fresh pineapple then spiked with jalapeno, served with muddled lime and a cayenne salted rim. I had a sip of it and could not believe how delicious it was. Good choice on Matt’s part, we might try to make this at home at some point.

Each couple ordered the shoestring truffle fries, which had sea salt, parsley, white truffle oil. I LOVE truffles, so I was pretty excited for these fries. They were amazing. Not too salty, and when you had a taste of the truffle oil you were in heaven.

For dinner, I ordered the grilled halibut, which came with field greens, verjus and white truffle oil vinaigrette, served over yukon gold mashed potatoes. (Can you tell I love truffles? Ha.) Oh my God, the flavors. The fish was grilled perfectly, the pine nuts gave it a nice little crunch, everything was so fresh… I swear I almost married my dish. Matt and Amy both got a special which had white Alaskan salmon and scallops. I had a taste of Matt’s and holy canoli, I could’ve married his dish, too. Bruce got a grilled halibut with a mango salsa and uh well basically, all that was heard from our table were, “OH MY GOD”s and “Thisisthebestmealever.”

Based on our appetizer and dinner, we knew we had to go get dessert. We split 2 orders of a dessert that was a special that night. A brioche bread pudding, topped with house-made praline ice cream and caramel sauce. I think I fell out of my seat when I tasted it. I love a good bread pudding, but with BRIOCHE?! Yeah, sign me up.

We left so happy and content, picking up some mugs from the cafe on our way out, to remember what a wonderful meal we had. (And yes, if you’re ever up on Orcas Island you MUST go to this place.)

After we got back to our site, we hung out, made a fire, talked and played some Ticket to Ride: Europe. Pretty sure there was some smore-making in there, too.

The next morning, we woke up and Bruce made us some banana pancakes, eggs and bacon. Talk about delightful breakfasts!

We got ready then headed into town for one of my favorite parts of the whole trip, the Eastsound farmer’s market that is held every Saturday. I LOVE going there, eating amazing food (I get that sausage every year from the same guy and it’s always amazing, and Matt always gets pan-fried oysters which are fresh from the island), shopping, and just being happy.

We also picked up some awesome driftwood pieces for our house, and they’re the perfect way to welcome anyone into our home, with the words “play” and “laugh” etched into them.

My biggest surprise came from Matt, who bought me a beautiful piece of sea glass jewelry to put on the chain from my wedding necklace (the pendant kind of fell apart from wearing it too much). I am in love with this piece and wear it every day.

After the market, we made our way over to some smaller shops in town, but the bookstore was the best place to be. It had all sorts of books I’d never seen, the smell of the shop smelled like thousands of books, a little coffee shop in the corner… I basically DREAM of owning a shop like that on that island. We picked up a few things then headed out and back to our site.

We made a quick stop on our way back at the local pie shop, and got a few pieces of pie to-go, leaving a nice note as they made AMAZING pies from scratch with all organic ingredients.

We hung out and relaxed, then the sun came out and Amy and I decided to go swimming again, wading around and enjoying the nice weather. BUT THEN, out of nowhere, we spotted NESSIE. Can you believe it? But get this, this is what makes it even more incredible.. Nessie has a boyfriend named Nestor, and they both live in this lake. We even had photographic proof…

Haha, okay, so it was just me and Amy but we thought it was funny. I even considered photoshopping a top hat and bow tie on Nestor but wanted to get this done sooner. What is hilarious is the first photo that we tried, I somehow thought by hiding just my face, that you wouldn’t be able to see my head.. It resulted in this terrible photo that Matt made fun of me for:

We took it pretty easy for the rest of the night until we had to pack up to catch our ferry the next morning.

I was so happy on our drive to the ferry that I FINALLY caught a photo (not great, but I’ll take it) of a deer! We saw so many deer driving back and forth to our site it was crazy. Definitely must’ve been feeding season for them this time of year.

We finally made it over to our ferry, got some breakfast, and took it easy until we loaded onto the ferry. We played more Bananagrams and took more remarkably hilarious/terrible photos while sitting on the ferry. We also saw orca whales while on the ferry and that was AMAZING because you very rarely see orcas anywhere nearby the ferries. Perfect way to end our trip.

Once we made it back to Anacortes, we listened to some good music, had Milo navigate us back to our house, and smiled after having such a wonderful mini-vacation with our best friends.

The final thing that I will leave you with, as promised, are a series of photos of Matt’s creepy faces he made while we camped. I have no idea why, but I accumulated a good 8 photos of Matt’s various creepy faces. Enjoy.




Filed under Photography, Travel, Weekend

6 responses to “Travels! Orcas Island, Part Two

  1. BFO

    love it! especially Matt’s faces 🙂

  2. I’m a local here on Orcas and got a kick out of this post! New Leaf is one of my favorite places but can’t afford to eat there on a regular basis (so it was funny to me that the shop owner asked about it… I don’t think she meant to offend you, maybe just chose her words differently)… and your necklace was made by my friend and I’m soooo glad you love it so much! I love her work too and it gave “warm fuzzies” to see strangers giving her props! Thanks for the great review of our little paradise away from the “real world” 🙂 CHEERS!

    • Awesome! This comment made me pretty happy, haha. We go to Orcas Island every summer for our annual camping trip and I swear one day I will move there. I love that island so much. And yes, the lady didn’t mean to offend us, though I think she may have been basing her assumptions on what we were wearing (hoodie, shorts, and a Boston Red Sox hat)… But I’ll tell you, everyone on the island is SO friendly. And your friend who made my necklace was so nice! She was telling us about another campsite at Moran that was supposed to be good, and also was talking to us about living on the island and how you really should have a creative outlet otherwise you can go crazy in the winter… Didn’t scare my husband or me though; I’d love to live up there and write. 🙂 Anyway, I love the paradise that is Orcas Island and hope one day we can live up there. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s