Family Time

posted in: Blog, Life | 0
Summer is magical in the Pacific Northwest. The world is beautiful and lush. There’s so much to do within a 90 minute drive. We have enjoyed this family time immensely. It gives us a chance to connect with the boys and they are having fun exploring, too.
We have wonderful adventures most every weekend. This is exactly what we wanted to do in moving here. Last weekend we drove through the Tillamook State Forest down to Tillamook and Nehalem Bay. We stopped in for some samples at the Tillamook Cheese factory. Then we drove up highway 101 and explored the coast a bit. We packed a picnic and ate at Manhattan Beach. The weather on the coast is always much cooler than inland. We’ve been averaging in the 90’s and the coast is in the 60’s. Our last stop was Oswald West, which is a cove beach set along some great old growth forest. It’s hard to explain how it feels to walk among these giants. There’s a wonder to it all. There’s so much to see along the coast. We are trying to make it there at least once a month, maybe more.

This week we spent two nights camping at Spruce a Run in the Clatsop State Forest. It’s just about an hour away and has become our go-to spot. We like the primitive sites because they have private access to the Nehalem River. We’ve been lucky to get sites both times we’ve gone. There are only five and its first come, first serve. Competition to get a spot is stiff. We have good luck heading out mid-week. The other campers all tend to be quiet then, too.

This campsite has a steep slope with a rope to get you down to the river. We explored the shore, and then the water as the days became increasingly warm. As inviting as the waterfalls are, we made the mistake of climbing through them and ended up covered with little leeches that hang on the rocks. The rest of the river was perfect for cooling off though. It topped 100 degrees in Portland both days we camped. It’s always cooler in the forest.

a barred owl watches

We have seen more owls than insects out here. With the temperature at night always dropping in to the 50’s this should come as no surprise. There are very few mosquitoes and flies. I like that. We have seen eagles a number of times along the canyon of the Nehalem. Scratch that off the bucket list. Some day we will get some good photos.
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We had a day to rest and┬áHusband hiked the Tom, Dick, and Harry trail up at Mt. Hood. It’s a grueling 5 + mile hike that rewards you with a view of five mountains on a clear day. This is the view down to Mirror Lake. It’s on my list now.
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We are registering for school this week. School begins the week after Labor Day, which will be here before we know it. In the mean time I need to find jeans in an impossible size 29 X 34. I should be looking for 29 X 36 but I know that’s a pipe dream. Alexander has grown more than six inches this year. He recently fulfilled the lifelong dream of bleaching his hair and dying it bright blue. He wanted to be that kid in school, which also makes me that mom. I think I was probably that mom before this.
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The new kits are due out later this week, barring complications. Here’s a teaser if you don’t follow me on instagram. I’ve added an option to sign up for notification once the kit is released. There’s only 20 kits available, so if you want one, you’ll need to act fast. I also have a special stamp set that will be in the shop. Keep an eye out!

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