sunny day

Bend Adventures

For the holiday weekend (and my birthday) we went to Bend! We haven’t been in winter time in a few years. I think maybe 2 years ago for my birthday? We rented a house with friends who had never been snowshoeing before and we arrived and there was…no snow…?

Well this year we booked the same house we stayed in last May with my parents (see that post for photos of the house!). Man, looking back at those posts from last year…Logan is so tiny! He looks like a little baby still. Awww heart melting…he’s such a big boy now!

Our friends that came with us this time have a 5 year old daughter, so it was nice to have another kid for Logan to play with. Logan LOVED it! He was following her around and copying everything she did. It was totally adorable.

We also discovered that the park across the street from the house we rented was PERFECT for little kids! Logan had such a blast. We went to the park a few times.

So we caravan-ed to Bend and stopped in Madras for a quick lunch (Mexican food) and then checked into our house. Saturday was WARM! We totally did not need jackets when we walked to the park for the kids to blow off some steam. Sitting in the car for 3 hours is hard. Logan did great and slept for a good portion of it, but he was happy to be out of the car and playing on the swings and slides and kid toys.

It was about 62 degrees! It was crazy! Like I said, no jackets needed. I was beginning to be a tad worried about our plans to snowshoe……….

So for dinner Saturday night, our friends made a delicious pasta dish (Michael and Ben had walked down to Growler Phil’s to fill the growlers, pick up some breakfast sausage at the meat department, and go to the grocery store for some essentials) and we munched on bread and cheese and drank beer. It was all so tasty! What a fun night. Lots of good food. The kids went to bed pretty easily. And then we all got in the hot tub with some champagne!

Just in case you were wondering…a hot tub and champagne sound like an AMAZING idea, and it was at the time, but dang did it give me a headache! I guess the combo on the champagne and the heat. The hot tub felt so good though! I was still a little under the weather, so it was nice to just relax. We chilled in the hot tub (it was probably about 25 degrees overnights outside in Bend) and then I went to bed a little early because I knew the munchkin would be up at dawn. (And I was right.)

Sunday morning I got up with Logan and made coffee and had some breakfast. Then everyone else got up and we took the kids up to Mount Bachelor. It was a gorgeous, sunny, warm day. And there was no snow.

Are you kidding me??!?!?!

I am beginning to think we are cursed! Both times we have taken friends to Bend in January to snowshoe (for their first times!!!) there was NO SNOW. We are seriously cursed. UGH.

So we couldn’t find any snow to snowshoe. Michael’s back was bothering him so he stayed back at the house with the dogs and the rest of us set out to find somewhere the kids could at least sled. Wanoga Sno Park had enough snow that we could sled, so all was not lost!

I bundled Logan up pretty good, even though it wasn’t that cold and everybody went sledding. Logan LOVED watching everybody sled. I found a teeny tiny hill and took Logan sledding with me about half a dozen times. He LOVED it and said “WEEEEEEEE” and he laughed. But when I tried to put him in the sled by himself and pull him on the snow he did NOT like that at all.

After sledding for a bit we went back to the Virginia Meissner Sno Park to go for a “hike”. It was such a beautiful day out with the sun and we had some time and wanted to be outside with the kids, so we all “hiked.” Below are pictures of our trek on the snow. If you want to see pictures of what it would look like WITH SNOW, check out this post and this post. Dammit! I can’t believe there was no snow again!!

For the first time ever, I tried hiking with Logan in the Kelty backpack with me carrying him. Michael usually does it. I’ve wanted to try it before and we’ve made plans for me to try carrying Logan to try and build up the strength to do it for longer, but we just never got around to it. So this was trial by fire! First, Logan is 30 pounds (and he’s not 2 yet) and the pack is probably 10. So an extra 40 pounds on me was hard and weird. It was doable, but my shoulders are what hurt me, honestly. It was really really hard on the shoulders. Maybe I needed to adjust it? I don’t know. I carried him for about 1/2 a mile up the snowy/icy, empty trail, then took him off to give my shoulders a break. Logan walked for some of it. Then I just carried him.

And Ben helped on the way back. ๐Ÿ™‚ I definitely need to practice carrying Logan in the backpack before hiking again. It was also a weird distribution of weight. A few times I felt like if I lost my balance and fell backwards, I’d just lay there like a turtle. ๐Ÿ˜‰

We went back to the house and had lunch (sandwiches) and everybody kind of chilled. Logan didn’t want to take a nap so I decided to go for a little drive and give him a chance to nap in the car. I drove around some of the fancy areas of downtown Bend, up in the hills, overlooking everything. I was pretty high up there and there was a ton of mist and fog. It was cool and kind of spooky.

Then I pulled over because all of a sudden a huge deer ran across the road and into someone’s front yard! I stopped to watch as the deer grazed and then another deer joined him. I sat there for about 15 minutes and just watched as a family of deer (about 5 of them) were all together. It was really cool to see! I posted some videos on my instagram.

I went back to the house eventually and the guys watched the kids while Charla and I went for a walk and back to Growler Phil’s because I wanted more Boneyard. ๐Ÿ˜€

We ended up ordering pizza for dinner and just eating in. It was easier with the kids. There was a restaurant we REALLY wanted to try but the wait was SO long we gave up.

The kids went to bed after dinner. I escaped to the hot tub and enjoyed it by myself for about 30 minutes, reading my book and eating gelato (!! perfect !!) before Ben and Charla joined me for a bit. Man, after spending an hour + in the hot tub relaxing, I slept SO good that night. I think we might need a hot tub at our house…

Monday Morning…bright and early…packing, eating breakfast, drinking coffee, and then we went to the park for one last hurrah.

 

I feel so bad for Bella. Saturday was her birthday (HAPPY BIRTHDAY BELLA!) and she was basically cooped up in the house most of the weekend because there wasn’t any snow, we didn’t take her on the hike because Virginia Meissner doesn’t allow dogs…I just felt bad. And I felt bad for our friends who didn’t get to snowshoe. SIGH. Seriously. Where is the snow?!?

Monday we drove back to Portland and Logan sleptย the entire drive home, it was amazing. Unpacked, chores, laundry, I hit the gym since I didn’t get any workouts in really, and then I collapsed into our bed for a fantastic night’s sleep!

Weekend on the Water

One of my favorite memories as a younger person was when I drove to Montana (from Portland) by myself to hang out with my friend Rachel. She lived near Glacier National Park and it was very cool and empowering to go on a road trip all by myself (I think I was like 23 or so at the time). I drove for hours in my Buick LeSabre (classy) to Spokane, Washington, spent the night in a motel 6-type place and then the next day drove the rest of the way to see Rachel in Montana. It was a GREAT trip with lots of stories (some we will never share with anyone ๐Ÿ˜€ ) and it was just me on the road with good music and my Road Atlas (yes this was before GPS and smartphones).

(The above photo was me in Montana!)

Over the weekend I got to spend some quality time with my bff Rachel! A few months ago we made plans to have a girl’s weekend somewhere half-way in between Portland and Seattle. I’ve been looking forward to this for months! A weekend away to do girl stuff and recharge…sign me up!

We booked a really adorable guest house on AirBnB. Rachel found it and I highly recommend it!ย It was pretty remote–you are about 30 minutes from anything, like if you forget your chocolate (like we did), you to have drive 30 minutes to the nearest store. But despite not being near anything, it was the ideal location. It was right on the water on Harstine Islandย near Shelton, Washington.

You cross over a bridge and then you are on the Island (probably 30 minutes or so from Olympia?) and you are surrounded by trees and the water and quiet waterfront homes. We barely saw anybody out, maybe a few fishermen on the water, that was it.

There was one bedroom and then a loft bedroom.

There was comfy furniture for movie watching.

The bathroom was nice, but slightly weird. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The deck overlooking the trees and water were absolutely amazing! And the house had all these big, beautiful windows overlooking the trees and Sound.

There was a pool that Rachel and I were really excited to use but sadly, it was closed up for the season by the time we got there. Bummer!

Friday afternoon I left Portland and unfortunately I a) didn’t get to say goodbye to Logan because he was still napping when I left and b) hit rush hour Friday traffic trying to get out of Portland so it took longer than expected to arrive, but it was fairly nice and easy drive once I got out of Portland/Vancouver.

Rachel had already checked in and was doing some work remotely and just relaxing. When I arrived we cooked dinner (steaks and baked potatoes and lots of wine) and stayed up way too late gabbing and catching up.

I got the bedroom downstairs and the bed was glorious and so comfy! I might have slept at an angle, taking up the entire bed, because I could. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I slept so good. It was so quiet and peaceful and comfortable.

Saturday I got to sleep in!!!!!!!! Wooooo hooo! I slept in until almost 8am. The bed was so comfy and I didn’t want to get out of bed but Rachel made coffee and I could smell it so…yeah I got up. ๐Ÿ˜€ We had breakfast (eggs, toast, bacon, coffee, juice) and then we went kayaking!

I didn’t take any photos of us kayaking, which I’m bummed about, but I was worried about my phone so it was just better to leave it behind. Rachel went in on a kickstarter years ago with Oru Kayaks, which are kayaks that fold up into something compact and easy to transport. So it was pretty fascinating to watch her put together these kayaks that were essentially folded up into boxes. It’s a pretty ingenious idea!

So it took about 30 minutes to put the kayaks together and then we were in the water. I can see where the process of putting them together could be kind of a pain in the ass…Rachel admitted that it’s her least favorite part of it and has discouraged her from using them more often, but also admitted that when her and her husband used to go all the time, it was a lot quicker to put the kayaks together because they had more practice.

I can see this being a good alternative to people that don’t have an ideal way to transport or store, traditional kayaks.

Anyways, we got in the water right in front of where we were staying. The sky was perfectly blue, the sun was out, the air was cool but not cold. The kayaks worked great and we didn’t sink or tip over (even though they were a little wobbly) and we didn’t get wet at all. We kayaked around for about an hour. It was really fun and kind of the perfect way to spend the sunny morning. We saw some gray clouds off in the distance so we decided to turn around and head back. We literally missed the rain by like maybe 10 minutes!

The beach was rocky and had a little bit of sand. There were tons of oyster shells and barnacles, lots of seaweed.

We had lunch outside on the deck overlooking the water. We made big, crunchy salads. It was delicious. The water was calm and there was a light breeze mixed with some rain sprinkles.

Then we kind of spent the rest of the afternoon lounging on the couch watching chick flicks and watching the alternating sunshine and rainy stormy weather outside the windows. It was really chill and relaxing.

Dinner was baked chicken and baked potatoes. Then more chit chatting and hanging out. ๐Ÿ˜€ It was great!

It was such a good way to spend the weekend. It was definitely chill. I didn’t really work out. The kayaking was fun, and sort of active, but not really a workout. I could have maybe gone for a run, but I didn’t feel like it. It was just nice to relax and honestly do nothing for a change.

Sunday we had a leisurely morning. I made breakfast, we drank a ton of coffee. I walked down to the water because it looked like the tide was out and I wanted to explore a bit. The tide was WAY out! The below pictures was right where we were kayaking the day before!

A lot more seaweed that morning. It was a really quiet morning. The water was like a mirror and there wasn’t anyone else out on the water or beach but me. It was so nice.

I wish we could have spent a little more time relaxing Sunday morning before packing up. It was such a delightful little spot to spend time!

So we packed up and refolded the kayaks and hit the road. We decided to make this weekend an annual thing. We’re going to alternate who picks the spot each year. I have to say, I’m already super excited for next year’s weekend!!!!!