Christmas at the Beach

Over the weekend our family had a nice little getaway. My family is pretty big (on my mom’s side) and we used to do a summer camp out party and then a Christmas party every year. This year my cousin Di organized and coordinated a fantastic new Christmas party!

She found a giant house on the beach in Rockaway, OR. It was a giant house, big enough for the majority of people to stay there. I think there was something like 4 or 5 bedrooms (several rooms had bunk beds) so tons of people could sleep there.

We decided to rent a house in Rockaway with my parents. Our house that we rented was on the north side of town, the other house was south but it was literally 7 minutes to drive to the party, so no big deal.

You can see pictures of the vacation house we rented on my Instagram. It was really cute! It was big with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, the garage was converted to another bedroom/playroom. There was a fenced yard for Bella (fabulous) with a fire pit and picnic bench. The decor was super cute and kind of modern/retro. Check out the photos I took.

Plus, there was a GIANT closet stuffed full of toys for kids of any ages! Logan had SO much fun playing with the toys. What a great surprise!

Our house was one block from the beach, too! We had easy access to the beach. The weather was perfect this week–sunny and not windy and fairly warm. It was in the 30’s in the mornings, though!

We all arrived at the house Friday afternoon and then went for a walk on the beach. It was gorgeous and we basically had the beach all to ourselves.

After Logan went to bed, my Dad and Michael went to pick up pizza and Caesar salad for dinner and the four of us had pizza (Michael and I had beer from Buoy) and we played card games. It was so much fun!

Saturday morning my parents played with Logan and Michael and I went for a run. It was a very cool, cold morning but the sun was out and we warmed up pretty quickly. The sun felt nice! We ran around the neighborhood and by the beach. I ended up running around 2.75 miles. Then while Michael was making his famous mac n’ cheese for the potluck, my dad and I went for a long walk on the beach while Logan napped.

Bella was LOVING the beach! I have some cute videos on my Instagram if you want to see.

After lunch on Saturday we packed up the stuff we needed for the party and went down to the party house.

Here is a video of the BIG house everyone else was staying in! It was huge and right on the beach! It had a hot tub and a fabulous view. Lots of room for a big group.

How nice is that deck?! What a cool place to stay in the summer time. The party was fun. My cousin brought her 14 month old twins so Logan had a BLAST playing with his little cousins! It was so cute!

Logan is all about giving high-5’s and fist bumps. 😀

Logan did so good. There were a LOT of people (30? ish?) and he was a bit shy and unsure at first but he warmed up and had so much fun. It was so cool to see him spending time with family we don’t get to see often.

How cute (and hilarious) is the below photo?! HAHA

There was a potluck dinner. After dinner my dad and I took Logan back to the house we rented because he was fading fast. My dad stayed with the baby and I went back to the party for the white elephant gift exchange.

This is the gift I brought for the gift exchange. 😀

Have to say, the sweater might be the best gift!

Then a bunch of us went down to the beach for a bonfire. Nothing better than that!

The next morning we had breakfast and packed and then went for one last walk on the empty beach.

I didn’t want to leave. I love the beach. We checked out of the house and headed home. Rockaway is about 2 hours from Portland. Logan slept for a good chunk of it, which was nice.

Home to unpack and I went swimming. It was a great weekend!

Pizza, Potter and Pancakes

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Ah, it’s that time of year again…when the gym becomes more crowded and people who obviously don’t know the etiquette of good gym behavior invade our space. Let’s all take a big, deep cleansing breath and hope they learn quickly to be polite. Despite the annoyances at the gym, I had a great sweat session. After my cardio I hit the free weights and did a bunch of circuit training including ab work, squats, triceps dips and lunges.

My gym now has a TRX thing set up. I’ve seen the infomercials but have never tried it before. It looks interesting for sure. Plus, they now have kettlebells! Yeah! I really liked the kettlebell workout I did at Christian’s gym and I gave it a go on Saturday. Loved it!

Gym Stats:
Time: 1:32
Calories Burned: 775

Good numbers! Saturday night Michael and I settled in to a relaxing evening with dinner and a movie. The movie: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Dinner: homemade pizza!

The dough might have been a little deformed but it tasted great; that’s all that matters. Pepperoni, black olives and hot peppers on top, with fresh rosemary and garlic in the sauce. Michael also added oregano to the dough before mixing it. It was a tasty pizza. Michael also used his new pizza cutter that he got in his work’s white elephant exchange. Pretty nice gift!

We settled in to watch Harry Potter while we ate dinner. Michael built a fire in the fireplace (don’t you just love the bike photobombing my picture?) and I turned on the Christmas tree lights. It was a great Saturday night.

I also indulged in a seasonal treat: eggnog. I bought a small carton of eggnog at the store this week and I’ve been waiting ALL week to open it! I measured out 1/2 cup of the eggnog (a serving size) and added some fat-free milk to dilute it a bit (eggnog by itself is a little too thick for me). I added a bit of spiced rum and had the perfect Christmas drink.

The thing with eggnog for me is that I can usually only enjoy one glass of it. The calories just aren’t worth it to me and drinking more than one means I won’t enjoy it as much. So one is enough. Besides, I might have made some cookies too and wanted to eat dessert….

I’m kinda bummed at how the Harry Potter movie ended. I won’t spoil it for anyone else that is late to the game (like me) but it was sad. I know from a storyteller’s point of view it had to happen that way because Harry Potter needs to leave his mentor behind and find his way on his own–become a man, a hero, etc. But still!

When I woke up Sunday morning, I had Fat Kitty purring next to my face and Michael brought me breakfast in bed:

A pancake and bacon. What a way to start the morning right. 🙂

QUESTION: Without spoilers, what’s your favorite Harry Potter movie?