Saint Edward State Park, Kenmore, WA

Saint Edward State Park is an enormous park located in Kenmore, WA, but also kind of Kirkland as well. With this being a state park, visitors must pay a $10/day parking fee to even visit the grounds, so I recommend taking advantage of one of the free park days throughout the year, or use the Discover Pass that you purchased with your annual fishing license. 😉

This informational sign placed near the front entrance of the building does a nice job of summarizing the history of the place, so just zoom in on the photo and I won’t need to rehash it all for you:

The most impressive part of this park is the old Seminary, built in 1930.  The building is rich with detail and personality, and it is really a shame that the interior it is not currently open to the public.  The building has many great examples of Romanesque architecture, such as the semicircular arches over the doorways and windows and the bell tower. The window pairs with the pilar in between was also a common feature.Look at this detail work on the second story of the dining hall. (You’ll need to zoom in on the photo to appreciate it.)  In the center of each window pair, on top of each capitol (the fancy part at the top of the pillar) there appears to be…is that the pope? Founder Bishop Edward John O’Dea perhaps?  I’m always amazed at second-story-and-above details like this. So few people will ever even notice them, but they were worth the price to someone.

Saint Edward’s Seminary Main Entry

Another feature of Romanesque architecture was the elaborate portals, or main entries to a building, and this building is a great example!  Above the main entrance door for Saint Edwards, the inscription reads, “spes messis in semine,” which I believe is the motto for the papacy  It roughly translates to, “the hope of the harvest is in the seed.”  I have kept the resolution relatively high on this image so readers can zoom in on the details. The artistry in the architecture here is amazing! Over the other door, the inscription reads “omnibus omnia facts sum”, which is a Latin quote from I Corinthians 9. This one roughly translates to mean “I become all things.”

View of the back of the Seminary from the playground area.

Now for the playground. Located very near the seminary, this playground (the largest in the state, according to the Seattle Times) was built in 2003, and it is still awesome today. It is completely fenced in , which is a blessing for many parents, but the interesting part here is that the fence rails have donors inscribed on them.  Here are a few of them (please forgive any transcription errors as my eyes are beginning to age):
Logan Heine
Jon Heine
Julie Heine
The Heines
The Sise Family
Myerchin Family
Pinczower Family
The Kayes Family
Peter Griffis
Rubin Maidan
The plaque at the entrance to the playground says that it was designed by the children of the community and built by “over 2,000 community volunteers.”  It also lists several key donors, such as:
Bald Eagle Tower donated in memory of Bill H Newman
Spiral Tube Slide donated by Marcie & Mike Rodgers
Climbing Wall donated by Haley Ashland & Art Turock
Perimeter Benches donated by the McAlister Families.

I have been in the field of Early Childhood Education since 1995. I have my Bachelor’s degree in Professional Child Development. In my free time, I love LEGO, ballet, ballroom dancing, eating out, traveling, history, architecture, genealogy, and people.

The Soup Cellar – Leavenworth, WA

Food: Hattie
Food: Parents
Kid Friendliness

Restaurant: The Soup Cellar
Cuisine: Bratwursts, Soup & Salad Bar
Visit Date: January 2017
Location: Leavenworth, WA
Address: 815 Front St # B
Price of Kids Meal: $7.49
Child Friendliness Factors: 
-Changing Table in restroom: Yes, and it was a large single-occupant restroom which makes it nice for potty-ing with your parents.
-Child hand washing made convenient: No
-Highchairs available: Yes
-Drinks: Milk available with straws.
-Child-friendly food/servings on menu: Yes, although my mom kinda freaked out about every kids meal being served with a big pile of french fries AND a pudding cup.
-Welcoming touches for children: None in particular.
Additional Comments:
-Beer & wine available
-Tight space with steep stairs, which may make it tricky for those in a stroller.
-No outdoor seating.
-No table service/counter service only, but soups & salad bar are serve-yourself style, which means you don’t have to wait on the kitchen staff to cook your stuff if you are really hungry.

Sometimes, I just want a slice of pizza or a hot dog, and The Soup Cellar is the perfect spot on a day like that. My parents, however, can get very particular about their food. They said it tasted fresh-from-the-Sysco-truck & were hoping for something more homemade. We did all agree that you can’t beat the speed here, and it was a great place to bring large families or picky eaters. They said the prices were good, too, so I think we’ll be back again someday.

I was born in September of 2014, and ever since I started eating solid foods I have been a self-proclaimed foodie. I am also an aspiring chef (actually, I just aspire to reach the kitchen counter right now), and experienced restaurant critic.