Snow. Lots of snow. Snow is how we’d describe today. That and our second exploration day, of course. But what a fun way to make this day even more unique!

Granted our “we got a ton of snow!” is nothing compared to higher in the mountains or some other states. Parts of the Treasure Valley got about 3 inches of snow total and most of it was melted by the afternoon.

I’ll pause while you either laugh or cringe at the amount of snowfall.

The neat thing about the snow from today, though, was all of it fell in the mid-morning meaning we got to enjoy watching is swirl and fall. Spurred on by the wind, it got everywhere.

We planned this exploration day for one or two weeks (depending upon who you ask) after enjoying ourselves so much the first time, so we were really excited to get going. With roads covered in snow, cars driving cautiously slow (most of them, at least), and snow still falling, off we went.

Today’s destination: Nampa.

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First Stop: The Nampa Historic Train Depot

Caleb and I visited the Nampa Train Depot once before William was born but not since. Our ultimate goal today was to visit our next stop which just so happened to be conveniently close to the depot. After hyping up William to go see the trains, he was super excited to get out of the car when we arrived in Nampa.

Actually, he was probably super excited to walk in the snow because, hello, snow! It’s fun when you’re a kid. Not as much as an adult as we’ve slowly come to realize.

A-traipsing we went through the ankle-deep, undisturbed snow to enter the train depot. A big green sign read “OPEN.” I was concerned that all the snow might for whatever close the depot fort he day, but thankfully that wasn’t the case.

Well, actually, it was. The closer we got to the door, we noticed a small white, handwritten sign saying, “Due to weather conditions, the depot is closed.”


(We double checked the doors just in case they weren’t locked. And they were.)

Alrighty, well, that was fun.

Exploration Day Nampa Train Depot

We’ll Go Again Another Time

We really enjoyed ourselves the first time we visited, and we know they don’t control the weather. We’ll definitely try again another day because the Canyon County Historical Society has a ton of neat stuff at the Nampa Train Depot!

So back we went through the ankle-deep, disturbed snow to get buckled up again. William was still hyped up about trains, though, and decided that, no, he wasn’t ready to get back in the car (because SNOW!!!). And frankly neither were we.

Since we came out here to explore, explore is what we did. So we watched some trains, explored an alley strung with glowing lights… all the while getting smacked in the face with tiny snowflakes.

Thanks, wind.

Second Stop: Double Decker Espresso

Eventually we decided shivering wasn’t as much fun as we thought and that hot coffee and a warm, double decker bus sounded much better!

Caleb discovered Double Decker Espresso in early January and has been dying to go explore it. And it’s not hard to understand why.

It’s a classic red double decker bus turned into a mobile coffee shop. How neat is that! Neither of us have been in one let alone seen one. This was a no-brainer stop for our February exploration day!

A local family renovated this neat bus and began selling a unique experience the day after Christmas 2018. They as a family run the shop driving to new locations every day. You can check out their Facebook page HERE to see where they’ll be each week!

Despite the snow, Dustin, one of the owners, managed to safely maneuver this huge bus through Nampa to the location of the day all the while driving on the right side. Huge kudos to Dustin! That’s commitment.

Yummy Drinks

Double Decker Espresso coffee shop Nampa

Caleb’s drink of choice was the Double Decker, a black coffee with a shot of espresso brewed from beans they roast themselves. He also tried one of their fresh homemade cinnamon rolls. That thing was good!! We managed to get a few pictures in before it “mysteriously” vanished.

Two thumbs up from Caleb!

I stepped outside of my usual realm of coffee-based drinks and had the London Fog, a big glass of Earl Grey tea with milk and vanilla syrup. I wasn’t how sure I’d like it, but oh it was lovely. The creaminess of the milk beautifully accented the floral and vanilla tones.

And on the completely opposite side of the spectrum, William downed his not-too-hot hot chocolate, so we think it’s got his stamp of approval!

Exploration Day Double Decker Espresso coffee shop Nampa

We enjoyed our drinks and cinnamon roll on the top level of the double decker bus. Warmed from our beverages and safe from the wind, we had a lovely time. We can’t wait to go back next time we’re in Nampa!

Home Again

Sadly by the time we finished at Double Decker Espresso, it was time to head home for lunch and William’s nap. I was so bummed to have only explored one (awesome!) place today. But nap time is nap time.

Everyone’s sanity depends on it.

But on the drive home, lo and behold, William fell asleep! Hallelujah!

This kid rarely ever falls asleep in the car. We seized this opportunity to fit in one last stop to finish off our exploration day. I’ve been really wanting a picture of downtown Boise covered in snow and what a better opportunity than this!

The longer we drove from Nampa to downtown Boise, the more the fog lifted from the foothills revealing the fresh powder.

And the more the snow melted. Drat.

The area near the Boise River is generally a few degrees warmer than the rest of the valley, and since it runs through the heart of downtown Boise, the snow here was sadly the first to disappear.

Exploration Day downtown Boise snow

But Caleb managed to still get some pretty pictures looking down from the Boise Train Depot (ah! Two historic train depots in one day! I just put that together! Genius.) and straight toward the Capitol building. It’s a beautiful achievement of architectural city planning in Boise to provide such a nice view from the depot on the hill to the Capitol.

While Caleb took the pictures (he’s the pro photographer at Caleb Patrick Photography, after all), I sat in the warm car as William continued to sleep.

Look at those cheeks!!!

He did wake up shortly before we finished there. But hey, we’ll take what we can get when it comes to toddler naptimes! The hilarious part was he had fallen asleep in the middle of eating a Larabar as we drove and upon waking up picked right back where he left off as if nothing happened.

Home Again: Take 2

Sightseeing down Capitol Boulevard topped off our exploration day so well that we felt satisfied with what we explored. This time we really did head home. Let me tell you, driving home was a lot easier than heading out that morning!

While it wasn’t exactly what I had planned (but really, when do things ever go exactly to plan??), Caleb, William, and I still had a wonderful time exploring.

We made the most of a temporarily closed train depot, we enjoyed new drinks in a double decker bus (a double decker bus!!!), and finally took the picture of downtown Boise I’ve hoped to get for a while.

And I haven’t even mentioned the best part of the entire day! Want to know what that was?

Exploring as a family.

Wow, how…. sweet and sappy.

Yup! That’s I was going for. It’s one thing to explore as a couple. It’s another thing to explore with a toddler and see the world through his eyes.

So would we do today again? Of course I’ll say “yes.” Although, if we do replicate today at a later time, I hope there won’t be quite as much snow.

We’ve got an assignment for you this month! Go visit Double Decker Espresso and the Nampa Train Depot then report back here with a comment on how you enjoyed it!

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