Saturday, July 22, 2017

Day 14.

Spent the morning and a good portion of the day having coffee with some our favorite peeps. Uncle Shawn Lacey was able to come down from Port Townsend to Lacey, Wa and meet us out for a burger and beer. :-) The kids also got a bit of pool time, but it's never enough. Shawn bid us farewell and we took off to Seattle to meet A for her 21st birthday! This young lady has surpassed every expectation and has grown into the most beautiful person. We are so excited to be here on her special day and celebrate her. Happy Birthday Lady! Stopped at the Pikes Peak Market Place, fish, flowers, fruit and collectable comic books store, ha! We found some neat gifts for friends and family. Walking downtown Seattle is an adventure in itself. Guy tried to "collect" our parking pass so he can resell it, luckily Chris is fiesty. Met for dinner at Toulouse Petit Kitchen & Lounge, funky French & Creole restaurant for A's birthday. The food was rich, exotic, and flavorful. Chris and I both had jambalaya which was spicy and full of chicken, shrimp, and homemade Andouille sausage. Being with friends, in this place with a rustic authentic feel felt like we were all on romantic getaway in a French quarter. We drove back to Olympia and passed out; a full and fulfilling day. Thank you Sarah, Andy, A and Z for providing good coffee and amazing life long friendships. You are our peeps. We love you!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Day 13.

Thank you to my Godmother Aunty Jan for opening her heart and adorable home to us. I can't wait to see the finished product and for your upcoming retirement! And if anyone local wants hunting or trapping practice, she has some Nutria that need to relocated. We met Lance, Nicole and Evelyn for a Bon voyage breakfast right under the Astoria bridge. Destination Olympia, Wa to see my bestie Sarah, her beau Andy, and her children Alia and Zac. After running into the street to hug Sarah and Zac, we parked and went in for homemade chili. We decided to walk around the Capital Lake in town and reveled in the beauty of this area. We found a brewery called Fish Tales, amazing beers, menu and good atmosphere.  Facetime with A and much longed for conversation with friends brought laughter into the night.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Day 12.

It is so quiet here. We take our time getting ready to explore Astoria. We head downtown to the Oregon Film Museum. Here one make a film of your own using your own script or those of Films made in Oregon. It is housed in the old city jail, small but fun. We then took the self guided tour through the Flavel mansion, meeting up with Lance and family. Lunch at Buoy Beer and restaurant was slow but delicious. We have come to the conclusion that not only tourists but also locals are also on "beach time." Evelyn needed a nap so we went on to explore the Astoria Column. The kids and Chris hiked the 167 stairs to the top and I took pictures from the bottom. It is tradition to throw balsa wood model airplanes from the top so we stayed and watched the flight patterns for awhile. The view from here was spectacular as you look over the Port, the hills, bridges and rivers. We then ventured to Sunset Beach, after promising the kids more beach play. Immediately upon reaching the water we realized there were jellyfish parts on the sand. We scoured and scooped all the pieces we came across only to find large live ones coming in with the tide. The mass exodus came with a 10 inch Jelly with stingers still attached washed up near us. Opting for frisbee and sand play instead was short lived with the rising tide. We picked up dinner and grilled for Jan, Lance and family. We hung out and watched a movie until Evelyn's bedtime. Evelyn took turns on everyone's lap and Lily got some diaper changing practice! :-) Happy to see them and spend quality time together!

Day 11.

We can now officially say we have driven the entire length of the State of Oregon on US 101 along the coast, from Crescent City to Astoria. This has always been a bucket list item for me and it was worth it. We left Lincoln City and met our Niece Tiesha for breakfast in Pacific City. As locals know, beach weather is unpredictable, and this most of the duration of our time here has been amazing, sunny and warm. Pelican Brewery had a yummy breakfast with pairings and seafood. This beach is where my Step Mom Carol wanted to go when she was alive and after she passed. Lots of good memories with Grandma here for the kids. We walked out to the waves, I only cried a little, and luckily Tiesha was there too. Carol was such a beautiful p5erson inside and out, and we miss her terribly. She was divinely there, she reached out and showed is right where the good beach swag was. We collected sand dollars whole, clam shells, oyster shells, barnacles, and saw anemones, and fish in the tide pools. She was with us. We said Farewell to Tiesha and pushed on. We stopped to see the cabin that my Grandpa Harris built for my Great Grandparents in Manzanita, Or. Uncle Mark helped me find the street online because when it was built there was no address. My Great Grandma passed when I was 5, but I remember the house vividly. I wish now it would have stayed in the family. It is now the tiny house amidst giants, where the median home value is $445,000. It is a one bedroom, one bath, A frame built in 1963, my uncle helped put on the original cedar shake roof when he was young. A few blocks from the beach, we found it! Exactly as I remembered, updated of course. Next, we drove through Canon Beach which seemed very high end and busy. We stopped in Seaside and walked out to beach. This town has grown as well, the cute little main street became home to restaurants, and boutique shops. We ended up at my Godmother's "Aunty Jan" home in Astoria and parked the trailer. We met Lance, Nicole, and baby Evelynn down on the pier where they had gotten an Airbnb. Such a cool unit right over the water of the Columbia River Gorge by the bridge in an old fish cannery building. This area has been developed with upscale restaurants and lofts. Right next door we went to Rogue brewery and then met Jan after work at Mo's. We went back to the house to visit and see all the renovation progress on her house. All the finishes are classic of the 1930s era and fitting for this sweet dream home. The house sits right on the local slough (water way), ten minutes from downtown Astoria and the beach. We dozed off listening to the lone Bullfrog croaking.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Day 10.

Camping at the KOA was not too bad. Showers, laundry and a playground the kids could still play on. The campground is centrally located in town, near lake, town, ocean and Dad's house. We had an easy breakfast, and ventured to the beach. The waves were huge and kids were determined to seek them out. We found a good spot and I think our crazy kids were the only ones swimming. The water is always cold, and the wind was brutal. A curious sea lion even came over to see what they were doing. Dad and Jerrie came out too and watched the kids play. We tried to have a picnic lunch but it literally became "sand"whiches and not surprised the kids got cold. We gave up and pleaded mercy from the wind and decided to go. Chris and I found a new local brewery The Rusty Truck and restaurant and tried a flight of samples. Chris enjoyed the Double IPA avg I liked the Mango Cream Ale. On down the 101, we stopped at The Red Cock. I know, the name is silly, my Dad calls it The Red Chicken. Jewelry, and unique gifts from all over the world, it has always been a must stop for. I found out during the visit that the owner had passed away and the store is at risk for closing. My heart sank, this was a clear indication that Lincoln City as we knew it was changing. Luckily, no change to Candyland that makes the fresh salt water taffy. Mmm. We met Grandpa Ray Bob back at the camp site, had to show off the Lovebird. We stayed and played the afternoon at camp waiting for Patty, Zack, and Michael to back out to celebrate Michael's 22nd birthday. We went out to Pier 101 for dinner and stayed until closing. It was awesome to be able to chat with the nephews and my sister. Watching these young adults grow, establishing their own lives, and jobs has been an adventure. We wish them nothing but the best, but now it is their turn to fly. They have all the tools, can't wait to see what they construct. Said "See ya later" to Dad, Sister and family, always in our hearts.

Day 9.

Roseburg to Lincoln City, Or. Beautiful drive on a Sunday, no traffic, Sun is out and sky is clear.  Stopped only for coffee. Devil's lake KOA was our destination, where we set up the trailer and camp then left to meet family. Dad's house is 10 minutes down the road, where we had a little BBQ. Sister Patty, Nephew Zack, Niece Ashley, her boyfriend Tyler, Dad, his girlfriend Jerrie, Niece Tiesha, her boyfriend Spencer, all made it out. We had an awesome time catching up and watching the kids soak each other with water squirters. Thanks Aunt Patty! It was a little emotional being there without Grandma Carol but we could also feel her with us. We explored the creek behind the house, the water was much lower and changed direction a bit. It was so nice to have everyone together again, this has not happened in so long. Carol's passing has really been hard on every single person in a different way. She really brought us all together, and always had us smiling and laughing. We will all have to figure out this new phase of life, in her physical absence. She was the one that showed us all to Live Laugh Love Always, hard to remember sometimes.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Day 8.

Took a long beautiful drive up the coast of Southern Oregon. This was well worth the extra hour en route to Roseburg. The cliffs were impressive, the beach sprinkled with large rocks and hardly a soul, even on a Saturday. The fog burned off and the sun came out and sparkled on the water. Gold beach seemed like  someplace we need to pay another visit. So picturesque. We met the kids' Grandpa Maurie (my step Dad) and Nannie Debbie at  Logger's for lunch, and had yummy pizza and local beer. Roseburg is bigger than I thought offering many services but still had a small town feel. After lunch we went to see the land they purchased in which they are building their dream home. Such a gorgeous spot, on rolling hills over looking the Callahan range. Mature trees, some grapes, raspberries, and a view to die for. The land was marked where the house would be and building starts next week. Such an exciting journey for them and we can't wait to come see the finished product! Dinner of Ahi poke and Tri tip with grilled veggies hit the spot. We had a great visit and are so thankful to have these two in our lives. We took a walk on their road and saw goats, ducks, pigs, chickens, deer, dogs and cats. After walking the dogs with Dad and enjoying Debbie's breakfast this morning, we bid our farewell. And as we drove away, Lily said, "I already miss them!" We love you!!