Seattle's Wishing Tree

Wishing Tree

We here at Rain or Shine Guides don't consider ourselves particularly superstitious although we also don't make it a habit of walking under ladders or opening umbrellas indoors. And while deep down we do know it's all a bit silly, we'll go out of our way if it means a little extra luck and good fortune. So when we heard about a wishing tree in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, we figured we should take our chances and go check it out. And boy is this wishing tree done right!

For those of you who aren't familiar with the concept, it's basically what is sounds like: a tree that grants wishes. People tie their hopes and dreams in some format onto the tree and BAM the tree God grants it. Or the tree fairy? Or maybe it's a Grandma like in Disney's version of Pocahontas? We aren't exactly sure.

Capitol Hill home owner, Jane Hamel, has created her very own adorable wishing tree for Seattle to enjoy, complete with seats made out of tree stumps, a bench and table, and a jar of markers and cards for writing your wishes. After creating your wish, place your card in the gold jar and she will take the card and laminate it and add it to the tree. This keeps all of the wishes protected from Seattle's rainy weather. The tree has thousands of cards hanging on it in six different languages. Some wishes are funny, some are sad. As for our wish, we can't tell you..but it might have been food related.

Wishing Tree

Wishing trees tend to spring up all around Seattle, but the Capitol Hill location is the only one that seems to stick. We heard about a wishing tree at Carkeek Park. It was painted red, and while we did find the red tree (above the salmon slide), there were no wishes tied to it. We also heard about one on the Ship Canal Trail, but, sadly, we were unable to locate it. If you know about any other wishing trees around town, please leave a note in the comments! You can find the Capitol Hill tree at 1251 21st Ave. E. (cross street is Galer), and if you want to make an afternoon out of it, the tree is located very close to Volunteer Park. We encourage you to go, write down your heart's desire, and see your wish come true*.

Seattle's Wishing Tree
Seattle's Wishing Tree
Wishing Tree
Seattle's Wishing Tree
Wishing Tree
Wishing Tree
Wish

* Rain or Shines Guides is not responsible for failed wishes, including, but not limited to winning lottery numbers, new Teslas, and weird family members skipping out on Christmas. 

Seattle Neighborhood Guide: Greenlake

Greenlake

Sitting about 10 minutes north of downtown Seattle is one of the best (and most popular) urban parks the city has: Greenlake. The lake and its surrounding 2.8 mile track provide a plethora of things to do year round. Now, most of our neighborhood guides tend to focus on places to eat and drink (because let's be honest, we really like to eat and drink), but we have to admit the dining around Greenlake is a little lack-luster. While we do mention a few choice spots, we go to this neighborhood mostly for all the fun activities the lake has to offer! It does get fairly crowded, but that just means the people (and dog) watching gets even better. You never know when you'll run into a Corgi meet-up (yes, they really happen), see someone unicycle by your picnic, or run into the family of turtles that live at the lake. In addition, there are always fun events to keep an eye out for, and we have mentioned our favorites below.

Thing to Do 

Boat rentals from the Boathouse

Boat rentals from the Boathouse

Greenlake Boathouse 

Open from around Memorial Day - Labor Day, the Boathouse has you covered for all your water rental needs. They offer everything from paddle boards, pedal boats, kayaks, and canoes (among other things). There is also a cafe that serves coffee and snacks for a picnic or to enjoy while laying in a water hammock (they rent those too). All rentals are first come, first serve.

Seattle Public Theater at the Bathhouse

The bathhouse is a cute little theater that bring together the community for year-round plays and musicals (check their calendar for events). 

Greenlake Pitch 'N Putt

Greenlake Pitch 'N Putt

Greenlake Pitch 'N Putt

 Let's say your golf game isn't strong, but you want something more challenging than mini-golf (oh who are we kidding, mini-golf is hard!), enter Greenlake Pitch 'N Putt, a perfect 3-par course on the lake for practicing your swing.

Wading Pool

We don't have kids, but if we did, we would take them to the wading pool at Greenlake because nothing is more fun than a pool when you're a kid and this one is pretty cool. It also happens to be conveniently located next to the playground equipment. Get that child an ice cream cone, and you're officially parent of the year. Score!

Hangin' around

Hangin' around

Exercise

The lake offers two paths for your running pleasure. The inner loop is 2.8 miles around while the outer loop is 3.2 miles. There are even running clubs you can join if you need inspiration. As you run, you will also come across some exercise equipment with bars and hoops where you can stop over and stretch, hang, flip, twirl and do whatever else it is you do on this stuff (see Kristina's uncoordinated-adult-ring-swinging in photo). 

Fishing at Greenlake

Fishing

We can not recommend eating any of the fish you catch at Greenlake (for real, we are very unclear about this...we are guessing no), however it IS stocked fully with trout, which makes it a great place for recreational fishing. There are lots of spots to fish along the lake, but we like the dock located close to the Aqua Theater. It makes us feel like we aren't in the city, and it's a great place to set up a chair, pop a cold beer, and wait for the fish to bite. It's a popular spot, so you'll most likely have to share or go early to set-up camp.

Geocaching

This fun, international, hide-and-seek game is HQ'd in Seattle, and Greenlake is definitely a popular spot for hiding these treasures. Download the app and go to town! It's a great way to walk around the lake with a destination in mind. Check out our post on Geocaching 101 if you don't know how to play.

Where to Eat

Bongos

Bongos

This Cuban and Caribbean restaurant is by far THE BEST place to eat at Greenlake. We love it for its laid-back outdoor seating (complete with sand, a tiki bar, and a fire pit -- you'll forget you're on Aurora Ave), delicious food, and colorful building. It's impossible to pick one dish on the menu to recommend as we love them all, but if you are forcing us, start with the The Desi... or Bucco chicken (sorry we can't pick just one, you'll understand once you go).

Kitanda

Located a little off the lake in the Greenlake Village, this is the only place up north we know of where you can get acai bowls. It's a Brazilian coffee shop that also offers special products from Brazil like chocolates and cheese. You can even get acai in bulk to take home.

The light filled space of Shelter

The light filled space of Shelter

Shelter

The food at Shelter is fine, but what we can't get over is the beautiful building with ceiling to floors windows and natural light. It's a beautiful space whether you are there on a sunny day or a rainy day. We recommend going for a cocktail and enjoying the lovely vibe. 

Urban Bakery

Every neighborhood needs a classic sandwich shop, and the Urban Bakery is it for Greenlake. It's your go-to place for coffee, pastries, sandwiches, and soups, and is a perfect place to stop in for lunch after walking the lake.

Zoe Yogurt

Hot days at the lake call for a sweet treat! We love all those yogurt places with the toppings bars because customizing your treat is the best. Zoe yogurt has a bunch of different yogurt flavors available (you can sample them all!) with a wide selection of candy and toppings to choose from. If you're more of a Menchie's fan, there is one of those too in Greenlake Village. Or, if you think yogurt is the worst, you can go classic Ben and Jerry's and stop in at their scoop shop. 

Teddy's Bigger Burgers

Teddy's Bigger Burgers

This burger shop is a Hawaiian based chain, which obviously makes it legit. The burgers are, in fact, bigger and they have a wide range of flavors such as the Volcano Burger (jalapenos, pepper jack, BBQ) or the Kaneohe Burger (garlic burger with bacon, cheddar, avocado). Not a beef eater? No worries! There is also chicken, fish, pork, and veggie options available.

Greenlake Bar & Grill

Green Lake Alehouse or Greenlake Bar & Grill

Neither of these places will blow your socks off, but they get the job done when you need an easy, no-fuss spot to grab food at the lake. Either place is a great spot to grab brunch or your standard pub food and both have a small, but well curated, local beer selection. 

Festivals & Events

Luminata (September)

The Fremont Arts Council (who put on our favorite Summer Solstice Parade) also do a festival to celebrate the Autumn Equinox. The celebration includes a parade around Greenlake complete with music and lighted lanterns. Lanterns are available for sale, and it's a wonderful way to say goodbye to the summer and start embracing the shorter days. 

Hiroshima to Hope (August)

This festival also includes lanterns, but this time they are lit and floated on the lake as a way to honor the victims of Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and all victims of war. It's a beautiful, annual tradition with thousands of participants, music, and hope.

The Pathway of Lights (Photo Source)

The Pathway of Lights (Photo Source)

Pathway of Lights (December)

A Christmas tradition! People come to light the pathway around the lake and share in holiday cheer with music, food, and warm drinks. Bring your own light and lantern to add to the ambiance. 

Greenlake Gobble & Mashed Potato Munch-off (November)

Sure, sure. The 5k around the lake is all fine and dandy. We understand the importance of working off your turkey dinner. BUT we really go for the mashed potato eating contest. You can buy raffle tickets for the opportunity to participate, and trust us, it's harder than it looks (we have known people who have participated), but the amusement is priceless! 

Donut Dash (April)

An annual 5k that ends with eating donuts? No further details needed. SIGN US UP.

Corgi Meet-up (every second Saturday)

Is there a dog cuter than a Corgi? We think not. We LOVE that there is a meet-up for these pups every month at the lake. If you own a Corgi, you should definitely go and participate, and if you're like us and don't, you just go to squeeze them! 

What do you love at Greenlake? It's such a vibrant urban park and there is so much to do! 

Treetop Travel: A Weekend in Woodinville's Treehouse Bed and Breakfast

We recently had the pleasure of staying at "The Nest," a treehouse in Woodinville, WA built by the now famous Pete Nelson. If you aren't familiar with Pete Nelson or his epic portfolio of beautiful treehouses all over the world, check his work out here. Now that you've seen his work you can understand, this wasn't just any old treehouse. It was a beautiful cabin nestled in the trees and it is the perfect place for a quiet getaway! 

It's epic. It's an epic treehouse. 

It's epic. It's an epic treehouse. 

The treehouse is located on the beautiful Cottage Lake and offers wonderful views from its perch. The treehouse even has a small outdoor deck situated in the limbs to sit and enjoy the kayakers on the lake, birds in the trees, and quiet sounds of nature. It sleeps two and the owners, John and Beth, provide you with a wonderful breakfast in the morning and tips for places to eat and things to do in the surrounding area. You also have access to their private dock and kayaks which makes for a fun lake outing on a nice day. Oh, and once the sun sets you can enjoy their fire pit for making s'mores (s'mores ingredients not included) and their wonderful hot tub with great views of the lake and stars. 

Insider tip: There are plenty of eagles that live near Cottage Lake so be sure to ask John and Beth if they've seen any lately! We were positioned right next to a huge nest. A-freakin-mazing.

Have we sold you on it yet? (No, we aren't being paid for this post, the place is just unbiasedly perfect.)

The wonderful breakfast that was delivered in the morning. 

The wonderful breakfast that was delivered in the morning. 

Even on cloudy days it was wonderful to have a dock to enjoy. 

Even on cloudy days it was wonderful to have a dock to enjoy. 

Our cute compost toilet. There is a full bathroom in the main house, but if you need to tinkle in the night this one works well! 

Our cute compost toilet. There is a full bathroom in the main house, but if you need to tinkle in the night this one works well! 

Even before our treehouse stay Woodinville was one of our favorite places to escape to for the weekend because...well...wine, duh! Woodinville is home to over 100 wineries and it's only 30 minutes away from Seattle. It's close enough to take a Lyft, but far enough away to let that small-town feeling really soak in. You can hop from winery to winery tasting the amazing variety of wines that Washington has to offer and then once you are happy and drunk, go find a delicious dinner at places like Hollywood Tavern, Vivi Pizzeria, or Italianissimo

Check out this beginners guide to wine tasting in Woodinville to help you navigate the many wineries. Woodinville also has a great website with a map of all the wineries here. A few of our favorites are JM Cellars, Robert Ramsey, and Warr King Wines. 

But let's not forget the point of this whole post, you can stay in a treehouse when you visit. Which means you can stay in a treehouse AND visit 100+ wineries. We will just leave the link to book your weekend getaway right here. You're welcome.

Click here to >>>> BOOK AMAZING TREEHOUSE WEEKEND GETAWAY AND DRINK DELICIOUS WINE TOO! <<<<<

The grounds were so beautiful and lush. 

The grounds were so beautiful and lush. 

View of Cottage Lake from the patio attached to the treehouse. 

View of Cottage Lake from the patio attached to the treehouse. 

Beautiful stained glass window gives The Nest additional character!

Beautiful stained glass window gives The Nest additional character!

Meet the Maker: Malika Siddiq of Lika Love

Malika!

Malika!

Malika Siddiq is the definition of a #girlboss. She owns two successful (and beautiful) retail stores and a retail truck, and she isn't stopping anytime soon! She built it all from the ground up, never looking back once. She decided to follow her lifelong dream of having her own boutique. When you meet her, you instantly feel like you've been friends forever. We found ourselves chatting for over an hour as she told her story and then of course, she helped us find a few pieces from the shop! Her motto at the store is "A fun and comfortable place for all women to shop" and we couldn't agree more! 

How did Lika Love come to be?

Lika Love

I’ve always loved fashion and wanted to have my own boutique. I had been itching to start following my dreams when someone told me about this fashion truck in West Seattle. I went to check it out, met the owner, and she ended up letting me work an event with her. Everything after that just fell into place. I found a truck in Portland shortly after. I went down to test drive it with my godfather, who is good with cars, and it turned out to be a great find. Once I bought it the biggest challenge had to be driving this 20 foot truck back to Seattle. I got a lottt of horn honks heading back north on I-5.

Once I was back in town I got to work having it painted and built it out. I actually cried when I saw it in red because it was so beautiful. After the truck was ready all that was left was for me to fill it with the goods! I went to California Market on a buying trip. I just went in and did it. I picked stuff that I loved and hoped that other people would love it too.

Two days after I got back from that trip everything arrived and I started selling!

How was it in the beginning getting started? 

In addition to clothes, amazing jewlery can be found at Lika Love

In addition to clothes, amazing jewlery can be found at Lika Love

I started off in 2013, when I was still bartending, and I would do events in the truck in my time off.  It was a lot of work, but I loved it. I would take the truck to Alki Beach, park it, and sell there. I was doing well so six months in I decided to leave my day job and commit to Lika Love full time. Of course, shortly after this I got kicked off of Alki. A cop showed up one day saying I didn’t have the right to be operating where I was, so I decided it was about time to find a permanent space.

It took some time. I wanted to ease into it and decided a pop-up shop would be a great way to do this. So for six months in West Seattle I had a little shop in a shared space. After that, I spent another six months working out of the truck to save up.

By 2015, I had a broker and she found me my wonderful location in Madison Valley. It was too perfect to pass up, but I had really wanted to have a store in West Seattle because it’s where I live and I love that part of Seattle. Then literally two weeks after I signed on the Madison Valley location, she found me a space in West Seattle. So now I have two stores!

What is the best part of owning your own shop? What is the most challenging?

Malika in action

Malika in action

The best part for me is knowing that I went after what I wanted and I got it. I’ve built such amazing relationships over the years with my clients who love Lika Love and what we do. I absolutely love seeing someone come into the store in their favorite Lika piece and tell me how comfortable and happy they feel every time they put it on.

The most challenging part? Probably the staff turnover. I want to take really good care of my clients and it’s hard to find people to work in the store that have the same level of commitment and passion for the clients as I do. 

What’s the 5-year plan?

Lika Love

My five-year plan definitely involves expanding the styling business. I do a lot of 1-on-1 styling right now and I want to do more. It's a really fun part of the job where we visit people in their homes and do closet clean-outs. We work with the clothes they already have to style new outfits and pair new pieces and really re-imagine their closet.

I also want to get the truck up and going on a regular basis again and open more stores. Portland is definitely on the short list. I want to continue to open stores in communities where we can be a true neighborhood boutique; they know you, you know them. 

What advice do you have for other women who are thinking about opening their own business?

Shopping for earrings

Shopping for earrings

It's really important to not let the naysayers talk you out of what you want to do. You get to create your own experience based on your love and your passion for something. If you don’t try, you’ve already failed. Just chase your dreams and go after it! 

"People kept asking me, 'What are you doing?' and I'd reply, 'Just watch.'"

Is it fun shopping for all the clothes?

Lika Love

Honestly, it’s better to see what I buy on the person who loves it later. I love having someone come in that hates shopping and help them walk out with pieces they feel confident and happy in.  

What are you favorite Seattle spots?

Malika of Lika Love

Well, for food, I love Buddha Ruksa in West Seattle. Roxbury Lanes have the BEST salt and pepper wings  -- they are seriously just crack. I also love to get Chinese foot massages at Two Smiling Feet. Alchemy is great for cocktails. It's this super cool space that is dark and sexy. They do really fun, entertaining craft cocktails that have things like fire and dried ice involved.

Anything else We should know about in the life of Malika? 

Malika and Meghan of @WestSeattleVibes

Malika and Meghan of @WestSeattleVibes

Yes! I have what I am now calling my "side venture," West Seattle Vibes! It's an Instagram account I share with my best girl, Meghan, where we share our love of West Seattle with the world! It is such a good break away from thinking about Lika Love. I've found it is very therapeutic to have another outlet. It started off very casual with a couple Insta Story videos and lately it has gained some traction and become a lot bigger and so much fun! Follow us @westseattlevibes! 

Lika Love
Lika Love