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.
Pearrygin 2017: part 1
We made the Trek out to Pearrygin this summer. As always, it was an epic/crazy/stressful time, that luckily was all worth it in the end. :)
it always takes us days to get everything prepped.
I had to use my new BYU bucket to mix The Pearrygin Lake Trailmix, since I do not have a bowl big enough to contain it.
Before we even got to the Lake we had to stop at our favorite candy store in the world and get a picture and treat.
The kids were non stop with the behind the boat activities this year.
There was a constant line and Dave, Pop-Pop and Uncle Christopher were kept quite busy driving the boat.
There was so much kneeboading this year.
Macey and Kaylin were pros and both learned how to deep water start.
Ruby and Crew rode on the back on Paul's kneeboard and I got to double next to them to enjoy it all.
Adults got in the action too and we desperately missed our 4th kneeboard.
Miles gave knee boarding a few good tries, but couldn't quite make it.
Although he did discover tubing and loved it.
None of the 10 and under crowd could handle the crazy rides he wanted. Which meant I got to ride with him. It was one of the highlights of the trip for me. He would freak out when he saw my tube flying across the wake towards him and then he'd fly after he got bumped. Then we both couldn't stop laughing, took me back to my tubing glory days with my cousins.
GTX got lots of action, but this might be it's last summer. It wasn't cruising across the water like it once did.
Macey was the offical Go-Pro handler on the kid rides.
So many happy faces, my favorite.
GiGi did her annual GTX ride, 2 months shy of her 90th birthday.
And Grandma B. and Gigi also had a few boat rides to watch the kids show off their tricks.
We bought these new little jet bob things and the kids had a blast on them.
And adults too.
There was also lots of wake boarding and skiing too, I just didn't get pictures. Although I did get this picture of Christopher skiing while holding a giant blow up gummy bear.
Another entertaining boat moment not pictured, was "Long Rope". It was essentially 3 ropes tied together. So, the boat would drive by and then what seemed like 3 minutes later the skier would come by the beach. We found it highly entertaining.
Pearrygin 2: Beach life
It was hot this year, which meant lots of time floating and swimming and hanging out in the shade of our awesome tree.
There wasn't much "relaxing" floating this year. There was always some kid that would notice you were alone and try to hop a ride on your floatation device.
Shaunna and I spent most of our time standing in the water managing the kid's rides behind the boat and the kids floating in the water.
We'd push the kids out and then pull them back with the ropes. Thrilling times.
And of course the kayaks got plenty of action.
Paul and I even escaped one night and got to enjoy a few quiet moments.
While boat drivers were having breaks and sun screen was drying, there was plenty on the beach to keep people entertained.
Lots of games.
We loved having the Great Grandmas there! They played lots of games with the big kids and finished an entire game of 5 Crowns with these 3.
book reading. Although, I only got 3 pages read of my book. Perhaps one day I might finish one again.
Ruby was always on the look out for Nana or Pop-Pop to play or cuddle with.
When Miles wasn't busy cornering people and sharing all known facts about bugs, you could usually find him with Teddi.
So much cousin time, the whole reason we came.
These kids had plans of how we could live at Pearrygin year round. They had ideas for a better kitchen, warmer sleeping bags, closer bathroom, and even plans for us to homeschool them. :)
These 2 will be best friends one day, I can tell.
The only downsides this year were Bugs and Wind.
My poor boy got eaten alive and swelled right up. Miles also got stung by a bee on his wrist. He looked like the nutty professor.
We lucked out and it wasn't too windy during the day, but come dinner time that wind would pick up and we could not get the Roadtrip to stay lit.
CJ and Shaunna had the genius idea to use the GTX as a wind shield. Worked pretty good and we got to eat warm food. The excitement of camping.
Love these people.
Always hard to leave them.
I love that my kids are getting to have the same memories, in the same place, that I got to have with my cousins and grandparents.
The highlights of my childhood took place here and I know my kids are going to remember these trips. Makes the insanity of the 15 hour drive, camping for 7 days in the dirt and heat worth it. And I didn't have a complete mental breakdown, so that is always good. :)
Washington weekend 2
After doing some laundry and showering, the first item on our agenda was visiting Larrabee State Park to find some crabs.
Larrabee never disappoints.
My desert dwelling children though had forgotten about how slippery seaweed on rocks is, so they all took a turn or 2 falling.
They were slightly more cautious after that.
We found all sorts of treasures...hermit crabs, shells, jelly fish, barnacles, fish, and of course LOTS of crabs.
The highlight though was the giant crab Uncle fished out of the water with Macey's net.
This crab put up a fight, but Christopher powered through and became a hero is these kid's eyes. :)
Don't worry we set him free and made sure he could swim safely away before we moved on to the next discovery.
It was well worth leaving the Olympic National Park a day early so we could get a little extra family time in.
And these little stinker cousins escaped outside when they were suppose to be in bed.
The actual reason we came back to Bellingham for the 2nd weekend was due to this girl getting married.
We've been best friends since we were 6 years old and I was so happy we were all able to make it.
This is a little montage of pictures our moms made for us when we graduated high school.
A few other Bellingham hightlights:
- Getting to stay at Grandma B.'s and having her make breakfast for all of us.
- Christopher took Paul on a real mountain biking ride.
- We got to have a little birthday party for Crew.
- And this girl was obsessed. She was constantly yelling "My Nana!" or "My Pop-Pop" and would then run in for a big hug. She was quite popular.
All in all it was a pretty perfect trip.