Our Trip Northwest
We decided last minute we needed an adventure and Paul had 4 days off for 4th of July. So, we quickly planned a trip to the Redwoods, Crater Lake, and then Bellingham.
Redwoods was probably was on my favorite places we have taken the kids so far, other than the insanely long and twisty drive there.
horrible dinner stop at a tiny gas station in the middle of nowhere and crazy hot.
We didn't have to camp and could stay in a hotel that was 5 min from the park entrance, which was quite convenient. Plus, Ruby puked in the bed the first night, so it was quite a relief to have clean sheets to put on and a place to do laundry in the morning.
We did Jedediah Smith State Park and Prairie Creek.
There was never a shortage of tree bridges to walk on.
or trees to look at.
We even found an unexpected lunch/swim spot. Kids had a blast jumping off the little bridge into the river, even though we had no towels or bathing suits.
Best place we found was Fern Canyon.
Plus, this sign was everywhere, which everyone found quite entertaining.
Fern Canyon is one of those places that makes the entire trip worth it.
And we were actually prepared with water shoes for everyone so, we were able to hike much further into the canyon than most of the tourists and had the place to ourselves.
Then right outside The Fern Canyon Trail was the beach, which made for an amazing lunch spot.
I remember visiting the giant Paul Bunyan Statue when I was younger, so I was beyond excited when I realized we were going to be driving right by it.
We then headed up to Medford, OR...This turned out to be the kids favorite night of the trip. We ate at Big Bear Diner, which was in itself a huge event for the kids. We never take them to sit down restaurants. Then a nice couple paid our bill, which the kids thought was the about the nicest the thing in the world. After that we had the entire outdoor pool to ourselves and since the water wasn't actually nasty, I swam too. Then they had their own hotel room (connected to ours).
Since we were semi close to Crater Lake, we figured we should stop, since we didn't know if we'd be back this way.
It was FREEZING when we first pulled in.
Luckily it warmed up as we made the trek down to the lake.
Water was freezing. Kids had intentions of swimming, but no one could be convinced to go any deeper than their knees.
Miles has been buying these animal field guides at all the national park visitor centers, so anytime we come across some sort of animal on the trail he pulls them out and identifies them for us. In this picture we are looking at a lizard.
Then we made the trek up to Bellingham through horrendous Portland traffic and all our kids vowed they never want to see Portland again. :)
Bellingham was my kids #1 thing the entire summer.
Even if we made them hike 5 miles after hiking the previous 3 days. :)
Just a reminder, this is not a National Park. This is just Bellingham. it is obvious everytime I go back why I have trouble seeing the beauty that is here in Utah.
Ruby whined the ENTIRE way up and down. Most she has ever whined. We ended up abandoning our other children at the top and take Ruby back down to the car since she wouldn't stop screaming and crying and people were trying to enjoy this incredible view.
Luckily the other kids were fairly content to be hiking with some of their favorite people.
One of my Bellingham requests was to get out on Lake Whatcom.
Just as paul and I were about to jump in the water to double knee board the boat died. So, we got to row back instead.
The rest of the time was just non stop cousins.
This trip was good for all our souls. I miss these people and this place. it felt good to be back and get to soak it all in for little bit.
A few weeks ago I got a text from Emily saying, " Jake has a great idea- You, me, Macey, AV, Disneyland." She got 4 free day passes from her amazing sister in law Meghan.
Even though Emily was just here for Thanksgiving, it had left this small hole in my heart. Because, while we got together a few times, it was always crazy and we never really got to hang out and talk. So, I missed her more after that than I did before she came.
I hesitated for a moment going over the logistics of it all in my head. Snowy roads, what do I do with the other 3 kids, and the fact that I had never driven alone for more than 2 hours made me a little nervous. But, after about 10 seconds there was nothing I could do but accept her invitation!
Best decision ever.
It was good practice for me to do a long drive with just one kid and show myself that I could drive 10 consecutive hours no problem (it obviously would of been much longer with all 4 kids).
Macey and I had a blast on the way down singing, dancing, eating, and listening to City of Ember. Macey was an awesome co-pilot and got all my snacks ready. Even with throwing up 3 times.
We hit Downtown Disney up while we waited for Emily and AV to get to the hotel.
Then it was lights out to get all rested up for our big day.
It was seriously a dream.
Perfect weather, perfect company, no diapers, no whining kids, no kids to carry, and an amazing guide in Meghan who made all the decisions for us.
It was a dream come true watching Macey and AV together.
We got to ride most all the rides we wanted. And really only had to wait in line for Peter Pan.
Macey didn't like Indiana Jones, luckily a Dole Whip did the trick and she was ready for Splash Mountain after that.
The girls did NOT want to ride Tower of Terror, but it is of course our favorite. So, we did what any good parent would do, we made them wait in line with us twice and then handed them over to a disney worker while we screamed and laughed as much as possible.
They were a little annoyed with us for taking up about an hour of their disney time, so we hit up bugs land and got a churro to help them forgive us.
We ended the day with Radiator Springs Racer and then ran back to Disneyland to catch their amazing night parade.
BEST DAY EVER.
The next day was spent recovering from our Disney hangover.
We ate good food, drove down the Pacific Coast Highway to play on this huge sand dune, dipped our toes in the ocean, and finished off the day by taking a dip in an outdoor pool.
Then it was back to the snow for us Utah girls. Luckily the high lasted me through some stressful and slippery road conditions.
And this pic right here, this is what Emily and I dreamed our lives as moms would be like.
So, while we don't get to raise our kids across the street from each other like we had always hoped, I'm glad we still get to have adventures together, 15 years later.
Pearrygin Novel part 1
We braved the drive and elements again and made the trek to Lake Pearrygin to camp with my family for the week.
There were of course a few moments where I questioned our sanity, as to why we came camping with 4 little kids so far from home. But, early morning cinnamon rolls from sherri's helped make it worth it.
And it didn't take long for all us to settle back into the Pearrygin Lifestyle.
Don't be fooled by this serene moment, there are 3 wild animals sleeping in here, just waiting to break out and cause chaos.
But watching these cousins play made it more than worth it. Crew and Mason ran right up to each other when we pulled in and it was like they'd never been apart.
And these 4 were bff's just like always.
I rarely got to sit down and chat with people, but I suppose that is what happens at this stage in my life.
Ruby was eating up the Pearrygin Lifestyle and just ran around our campsites checking things out and constantly taking the Stephen's little blowup animals.
I didn't even think of opening a book this year, but I didn't mind too much. There was just too much playing and chasing to do.
Luckily the kids got to spend some quality time with the great grandmas and Nana & Pop-Pop.
And there was always lots of late afternoon reading sessions happening in the shade.
We did get a few game nights in, my favorite being a rambunctious game of Dutch Blitz, where we got to break in our new expansion pack.
We made as many visits to Sherri's as possible and only got chased away by the bees once (Ruby got her first bee sting here).
And we learned, don't sit by Crew. The bees just flocked to this kid for some reason. :)
This was one of the hottest years I remember, so we ended up playing less games and spent more time floating and playing in the water.
The lobster, turtle, sting ray, and dolphin blowups we brought were one of our better summer purchases.
Paul came up with the idea to do a floaty parade.
He got all the animals tied together behind the kayak, we got the kids situated on their desired animal and he took the parade on a tour past our neighboring campsites.
Cutest parade I've ever seen.
Next post will be about our all thrilling adventures behind the boat.
Our First Spring Break
Our frist real Spring Break can be counted as a success.
We started the week by taking a little road trip to Logan to visit my Freshman Roommate Angie. It was just me and these crazies.
Angie and I were outnumbered 6 to 2, but luckily the kids were all pretty awesome. Although Miles of course had his moments: he threw a chair at Hazel, he tried to pick a fight with 3 big kids at the park when they knocked him over, and there were a few incidences involving the play house. But, for Miles, it was nothing out of the ordinary. :)
Macey and Hazel had a blast together. They loved the playhouse in their backyard and there was also a perfect tree for climbing, where Hazel showed Macey the proper way to climb a tree.
We of course had to stop by the Logan Temple, which was gorgeous.
And they also took us to this cute little zoo where we got to see Bobcats, Coyotees, birds, emus, and more. Macey's favorite was this peacock that was hanging out on top of one of the pens being extremely noisy. I now know, never live anywhere near peacocks.
We are excited to have these friends closer and are looking forward to another trip once school is out!
The week got even better when Paul decided to take a day off of work to get things done around the house and play with us.
We went to the Children's Gardens at Thanksgiving Point, but now I know they will be bored when we go next time because I am not nearly as entertaining as he is.
To finish the break off Macey and Miles were invited to a tea party at Maddy and Libby's. Even Miles was excited, but he's pretty much up for anything if it involves these cute girls.
Crew and Liam even kind of played together for the first time, well if you count Crew grabbing Liam's shirt and trying to eat him. But, I have a feeling these 2 will be good friends one day.
Crew took advantage of my laziness over the break though and could often be found under the table eating the crumbs left over from the previous meal.
We also spent time at the park with our school friends, lots of time riding bikes, playing with the neighbors, and I was just happy we had no schedule to keep! I believe those are all ingredients for a successful spring break.
This week off is making me super excited for summer, although there were a few incidences this weekend that made me happy it's not quite summer yet. :)