XXX Rootbeer Drive-In — Issaquah, Wa — Must do in Seattle

One of the must do places to stop by in Western Washington is XXX Rootbeer Drive-In in Issaquah, Wa.   It is about 20 minutes east of Seattle and they have the best hamburgers and rootbeer on the West Coast.  Ever since my brother found this place, I have always stopped by when I am in the Seattle area.

Me with my XXX Burger and XXX Super Rootbeer Float

Me with my XXX Burger and XXX Super Rootbeer Float

On my recent visit, I decided to go with the XXX Burger and a XXX Super Float.  When I order this, I was planning to split it with my wife and kids.  On a side note, my daughter slept through the whole experience in the car and my princess really need her beauty sleep that day (long day).  Yes, you must use both hands when eating the burger.  Alright I will include a couple of close-up.



The staff at XXX is very friendly and helping.  They even told me how to properly eat the burger so it would not slide off the bun.  If it is not raining you can eat outside at one of the many tables.  They also have tables inside as well.  The place is also very well decorated.  You feel  like you are at a diner.  This is definitely a place you don’t want to miss.  The root beer is made from a unique recipe from 1930 and it taste great and not too sweet.  The food and the people are great at XXX Root beer and next time you are in the Seattle area, do what you must to stop by.  On the weekends during the summer they will have car shows and it gets packed.

My son



My wife wanted to take a vacation, so she decided to spend about three weeks at my Mom’s house in Washington state.  She was planning to drive up from California to Washington with the kids earlier in August.  I drove up with her that weekend and I flew back the following Monday to go back to work.    The plan was that I would fly back up the Wednesday night prior to Labor Day and we would drive home that weekend.

My brother planted the  idea about coming back earlier to spend some extra time in Washington.  My workload was extremely light at my job and so I secretly planned to come to Washington five days earlier than planned.  My brother was the only one who knew of my plan, since he was going to pick me up from the airport.  My brother will often times go into work over the weekend, so he could say he had to go to work to finish a project. I wanted desperately to keep this a surprise from my wife.  I knew I need an excuse to ignore all phone calls for two hours during my flight, so I told my wife I was going to see Clone Wars that Saturday.  On a side note,  I still haven’t seen Clone Wars yet.

After arriving in Washington, I was not sure how I was going to surprise my wife.  My brother called my wife and mom to see what the plan was for dinner that night.  My wife needed to go to Target to pick up some diapers for our daughter prior to dinner.  My brother and I arrived at Target before my wife.  I spent a few minutes wandering the back aisle of the store.  I wanted to find the right opportunity to surprise my wife.  I was concerned that my bright Lithuania Basketball shirt would give me away but I made every effort to keep out of my wife’s and kids’ line of sight in the store.  When they finally arrived I saw both my mom and sister at the front of the store. (My sister and niece were visiting from Eastern Washington that weekend as well.)

It took them awhile to reach the back of the store but I knew eventually my kids would want to check out the toy section.  If the kids went to the toy section then my wife would be there as well.  It is funny as I was standing in one of the aisle, I saw my sister and niece pass by and they did not even notice me.  My mom also walked by and she did not notice me.  This was quite fun but the ultimate question would someone notice me first or would I totally surprise my wife?

As I heard my wife and kids approach ( both my kids are loud), I took precautions to hide between the aisle to conceal my whereabouts.  I waited patiently for the right opportunity and it came.  My wife went to take a look at some toys in a different aisle without the kids.  The rest of my family were scoping out the toy cars.  (My kids can spend hours looking at toy cars. )  With my wife’s back to me, I quickly swooped in behind her.  I think at that moment my mom and sister noticed me but my brother kept them quiet, and they were a little shocked and surprised.  I was behind my wife and then I tapped her on her shoulder.  The shock and surprise on her face was worth it all.  It had only been about two weeks but I truly missed my wife and i was very happy to hold my wife in my arms again, even in a Target store.  My kids were like there is dadda and then the went back to checking out the toys.

My wife, mom and sister were very happy to see me.  I had not seen my sister and niece for over two years so it was a great weekend to get together.  This was a great vacation and i am so happy that i went up early to spend some extra time in Washington with my family.  I even got some time to play basketball on the X-Box 360 with my brother.

I miss my family

The other weekend I drove up to my mom’s house with my wife and kids.  My mom and my brother live in Washington State and we live in Southern California.  My wife needed to get away for part of the summer.  It was a long but fun drive.  That following Monday I flew back to Southern California  and it was back to work for me.

Well, this whole week I had been really sick.  I am extremely congested and have a wicked cough.  The company I work for does not have sick days, so I had the wonderful opportunity to  be at work sick.  Finally, when I got home on Friday, I went straight to bed.  I slept for about 12 hours and then went to work for a few hours on Saturday.  Well I enjoyed some extra rest on Saturday.  I am feeling better today (Sunday).  I did some work around the house and even went to church.

I have been back since Monday and the house is so empty.  I miss my wife and kids so much.  Talking to them over the phone is not the same.  Seeing pictures of them over the Internet is making me sad.  I enjoy ever moment I do get to talk with both my  wife and kids on the phone and seeing the photos. I know I will be seeing them soon but still the house is too quiet without them.

Legoland California Review

As a kid, I had been to both Disneyland , Knott’s Berry Farm, Sea World, and Six Flags Magic Mountain.  I also remember going to a place called Marineland but this place is closed now.  I had enjoyed playing with Legos and dream of an amusement park to go to based on the Lego theme.  By the time Legoland opened in Carlsbad, California,  I had outgrown Legos.  Things have changed since I now have toddlers.

A friend of the family has a brother who works at Legoland and he offered us some free tickets to the park.  My family made the trek down to Legoland.   Legoland is about an hour and a half from the Los Angeles or one hour south of Anaheim.  It was a bit overcast the day we went but it did not ruin our trip.  Parking is averaged price at $10 but there is VIP parking for Volvo cars.  I read that Volvo is a key sponsor for Legoland. 

Regular tickets are a bit expensive at $60 dollars for adults and $50 dollars for kids.  There are multiple locations online to buy tickets at a cheaper price.  Costco does have a good deal for a one day pass and a 3 month pass.

Legoland is definitely worth a trip with the kids.  Every kid will enjoy walking through Miniland USA.  Miniland USA has replicas  of various cities such as San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Washington D.C., and New Orleans.  Even if you are an adult and would like to see something cool, then take some time exploring the detail in this Miniland USA.  There is a lot to take in and with kids you may miss some of the detail in these exhibits.

There are many rides and attractions at Legoland for the kids but beware of the height requirement on some of the rides. Some rides will not have a height requirement but other rides will have a height requirement varying from 34″ to 42″.  There are nine different themed ares in the park.  They include Land of Adventure, The Beginning, Dino Island, Explore Village, Fun Town, Pirate Shores, Castle Hill, Minilnad USA, and Imagination Zone.  Be warned,  Pirate Shores is a great place for the kids to get wet but they may need a change of clothes to enjoy the remainder of the day.  I highly recommend watching a show or two.  We saw the Lego Racers 4D movie.  My son, who is almost 4 years old, was reaching out for the 4D object and that was quite cute to see.  I did get my son to go on the fastest roller coaster at Legoland, the Lego Technic coaster.  He also had a blast driving at the Volvo JR Driving School.

My daughter is a bit shorter than my son but she is tall for her age.  We were able to go on a few rides with her too.  It was a bit hard to gage her response but she definitely had fun.  She enjoyed running around the park.  She sat through part of the Lego Racers 4D show and I think she liked it. By the end of the day she was tired and a bit cranky but she did skip her afternoon nap.  She made up for it on the trip to my sister’s house that evening.

We saw most of the park in the time we were there although we did miss the Castle Hill area.  Lines were extremely short and the longest wait was at the most 10 minutes.  The park was not crowded at all and the employees were extremely nice.  The gift shop is full of Legos and Lego accessories and is a great place to pick of a souvenir.  We did eat a restaurant in the park called Pizza Mania.  I would say the food was just OK but most amusement parks have average food, which is always overpriced.

Overall Legoland is a great place for toddlers.   The fact that it is not crowded is a plus but we did go on a Friday in early May.  Legoland, which is located in Carlsbad, is right next to the beach and usually the temperature never gets too hot.  We did not bring a stroller with us into Legoland but I think I would recommended it.  I would have loved putting both of my kids in the stroller instead of carrying them back to the car at the end of the day.  The food is average and if you can, bring your own snacks or lunch.  If you live in the area or planning a visit to Southern California, take the kids to Legoland.  If you have ever played with Legos or have kids that like Legos, then check out Legoland.