If you've noticed that I haven't posted much in the past two weeks, first off, thank you so much for visiting my blog. I've been on our family's yearly vacation to visit family. We I thought for sure I would have plenty of opportunity to post pictures and little tidbits from my vacation as I went along, but alas, a lack of time and internet connections allowed me to only post once. So to make up for it, I'm sharing my trip with you in two posts. The first post will highlight our trip to Oregon to visit my family and the second will highlight our trip to Missouri to visit my husband's family.
So here goes: We flew from Phoenix to Portland and drove 4 hours to my hometown of Grants Pass, Oregon. Not-So-Little-Man fell fast asleep but Baby Boy was as awake as could be.
As soon as I pulled into my mom's driveway, she was excited to show me the strawberries in her garden.
And I particularly liked the garlic blooms.
After the garden, I wanted to take a moment to take in the smell of pine, the sound of the wind blowing through the trees, and enjoy the many textures of the forest.
Then I walked through the front door om my mom's house and had to smile at the reminder of her quirkiness. It was so good to be home.
I arrived just in time to peel peas for dinner, straight from my mom's garden. How I envy her ability to grow things...
The next day, we went to my Uncle's house to help him pick the abundance of cherries on his trees.
My Uncle lives just a mile or two outside of town on a great slice of land. I told him that I was going to pitch a tent in his back yard and live there.
The next day was Sunday and we were all looking forward to visiting the church I grew up in, Applegate Christian Fellowship. In the summer, we meet outside in an amphitheater. I remember when the trees were just brand new. It's an amazing place to be. As you listen to the pastor, you hear the wind blowing through the trees, you will see a few butterflies fluttering about and you will hear the calming babble of the tiny stream that leads to the baptism pool at the front of the stage. What a great way to hear God's word, in the setting He has provided.
After church, we went back to my Uncle's place for a family BBQ and to help him some more with his cherries. I think we helped eat them more than anything.
Then we packed up the car and drove out to the coast to visit my grandma and meet up with my dad who had flown in from Alaska.
This was the first time my dad met Baby Boy. They snuggled right away. I was surprised at how immediately Baby Boy warmed up to him. But then again, my dad has always been like a big teddy bear.
This was also Baby Boy's first trip to the ocean. We went to one of the more calm beaches so he wouldn't get knocked over by any crazy waves. He loved the way the surf came in and out.
It was like he had always been on the ocean and just belongs there.
My oldest step-daughter was able to join us on the trip and she was jumping for joy to be on the beach.
Not-So-Little-Man decided to take a moment to be silly and pretend to "meditate" in the surf. He always cracks me up with his sense of humor.
We were experiencing some pretty low tides while I was there, so my dad took Not-So-Little-Man out clamming for two mornings. Here they are sanding their "clamming sticks". I'm not sure how they're used, because I decided to sleep instead of waking at 4am to clam with them.
For the Fourth of July, we had a nice "weinie roast" in the forest just a few miles inland from the beach. Since all the tourists flock to the beaches for the 4th, us locals go inland. We found a nice spot next to a creek which was so clear you could see each rock and pebble at the bottom of it.
After the roast, we decided to set off some fire works in grandma's driveway. It was a nice display for us and for her neighbors who were really excited to watch us young'ens be silly.
My personal favorite firework is the "Friendship Pagoda" it spins and shoots sparks, then pops up into an adorable little pagoda that you can keep. But in our case, something went horribly wrong and the friendship pagoda went up in flames... poor friendship pagoda...
Nearing the end of our time at Grandma's house, we were all completely stuffed with all the pies, waffles, cookies, and delicious meals grandma lovingly prepared for us. One of my favorite parts about grandma's is when we get towards the end of the visit when grandma starts combining parts and pieces from previous meals together into completely new ones. My favorite concoction of this trip was her fruit salad made with all the remaining fruit in her refrigerator: blackberries, raspberries, peaches, pineapple, and bananas. This was the best fruit salad I've ever eaten. We served it for breakfast and the leftovers were used to make an amazing cobbler. It was eaten so fast that I couldn't snap a picture of it. But I was able to get a picture of the fruit salad.
When our time in Oregon came to an end, we spent the last evening just enjoying eachother's company and saying farewell to our oldest daughter, who currently attends Michigan State University. It was really great spending time with her on this trip. It was neat watching her spend time with her little-est brother and truly special to see how much she cherishes him.
Oregon was an amazing trip and it was so wonderful to see all my family. As this leg of the trip ended, we were excited to visit my husband's family in Missouri on the next leg of the trip. Stay tuned for our adventures in Missouri...
Shared At: Domestically Divine Tuesdays, Teach Me Tuesdays, Show Me What Ya Got