Archive for the ‘portland’ Category

Can we talk for a minute about my dad?  He’s pretty remarkable.  One of the most genuinely friendly people I know, he’ll strike up a conversation with anyone and seems to leave a sea of smiles in his wake.  He’s incredibly generous with his time, quick to offer to feed an injured neighbor’s alpacas or to coach my childhood softball team or to help me paint our new house.  And he’s the perpetual life of the party – not in a dancing-with-a-lampshade-on-his-head kind of way, but more in a makes-sure-everyone-has-a-good-time kind of way.  Which is why we were thrilled to meet up with him and my mom in Portland to celebrate his big 7-0 a couple of weeks ago.  On his birthday eve, we gathered around Mitch and Kathryn’s table to dine on Mitch’s famous grilled chicken and Gresham’s finest cupcakes for dessert.

And then the girls ran off their cupcake-crazies in the front yard…

So happy, but so tired!

We laid pretty low during the day on Saturday, but did make it out of the house to watch Morgan dominate the soccer field.

The rest of the afternoon was spent swinging and teeter-tottering.

Saturday evening was the main event: The Jarrell Birthday Brew Crawl!  Mitch and Kathryn had booked a sitter so that the grown-ups could get out and imbibe with my dad at a handful of Portland’s best breweries.  First though, gifts!  Mitch and I went in together to up my dad’s Growler Game.

And a couple of quick pics, before we kissed the little ones good-bye and hailed our extra-large Lyft.

We started our journey at Von Ebert Brewing, where the tots were hot, the spinach dip was rich, and the Hefeweizen was extra-wheaty.

From Von Ebert’s we walked over to Deschutes where the wait for a table was over an hour, so we trekked on…

And landed at Bridgeport, where we chowed down on pot pie paired with perfect IPA’s.

We grabbed another Lyft after dinner and went to Breakside Brewery for…more beer!  Dessert was a glass of Salted Caramel Stout and a nibble of dark chocolate.  We rolled ourselves out of there and headed home to our girls, full and happy and a little bit loopy.  My dad knows how to party.

Happiest of Birthdays, Dad.  May this be a year of new Ales, no ails, and abundant joy.

We took down our Christmas tree today and I’m feelin’ all sorts of post-holiday blues over here.  SO, let’s go back a week, when I was hot-tubbing in Portland with these beauties and talking about what we thought Santa would bring on his sleigh!

It was a particularly cozy Christmas weekend, made all the warmer by snuggles with Bina, the newest member of the Jarrell family.

Shane brought his Nintendo down with us, which made for some some pretty intense Mario Kart sessions with the cousins.

The excitement was just too much for little Bina.

Icy roads kept us house-bound on Christmas Eve, so we made do with more Bina-time and some indoor shenanigans.

My mom and I are teaching Elise how to knit, a hobby she’s tackling with extreme focus.

The stir-crazies set in shortly after lunch, so we bundled up and headed outdoors to play in the…ice?

There were no snowmen, or even snowballs, but there was plenty of slipping and sliding on the streets and sidewalks.

We sought refuge indoors for a bit and sipped on mugs of Grandma’s hot cocoa, but the sight of big fluffy flakes and neighbors on sleds soon drew the girls back outside.

Morgan’s big birthday wish just a few days earlier had been for a snow day, so this was like a dream come true!

Lord knows I love beachy Jules, but snow-dusted stocking caps and rosy cheeks are such a good luck on both these girls!

And now I bring you…more Bina!  She’s pretty irresistible.

The girls opened their new PJ’s from Grandma that evening, which has become a Christmas Eve tradition.  This year, the dolls got new outfits as well!

And then we lit up the fireplace, made a nest of sleeping bags and pillows, and settled in for the Polar Express.  On a 10-point cozy scale, this gets an 11.

Post-movie, cookies and carrots were left by the fireplace for Santa and his reindeer and three exhausted-but-pumped-up little girls were tucked in with instructions to not get out of bed before 7 am the next morning.

At 7:15 on Christmas morning, the kids were tearing into their stockings, thrilled that SANTA CAME!

The morning was a flurry of wrapping paper and thank you’s.  Ironically, after the weeks I spent hemming and hawing over the perfect gift for Juliette, her favorite present was the Trolls-themed electric toothbrush I tossed in her stocking.

The Zelda action figure that Shane picked out for her was also a huge hit.

I much appreciated my own thoughtfulness when I opened the purse I had ordered on Black Friday.

Morgan was the first of the kids to get dressed that morning, eager to sport her new accessories.  This girl’s style is fierce.

And then…all was calm.

Snow continued to spit from the skies that morning, so once the kids had chowed down on their waffles topped with crumbled candy canes, they headed outside to burn off that sugar rush.

The snow was still too crusty to make into balls, but the smashing of ice sheets was quite satisfying.

And then, driveway sledding.  With tunnels!

Juliette played hard and crashed hard – I had a heck of a time rustling her from nap so that she’d be up (and out of her pajamas!) for Christmas dinner.

The promise of cookie-decorating got her going, though, so the girls worked on dessert while Mitch and Kathryn and Mom put the finishing touches on dinner.

Shane kept Bina from being underfoot in the bustling kitchen.  I thought this guy was allergic to dogs, but…?

We ate a decadent meal of country ham and took turns sharing our 2017 highlights, ending the day on a strong note of gratitude.  We certainly have no shortage of things or people or experiences (or puppies!) to be thankful for.

 

We spent last weekend in Portland, convening with my parents at my brother’s house for an early Thanksgiving / birthday celebration for my mom / general cousin love-fest – the whole family typically gets together only at Christmas, so this was a happy bonus. The weekend was wet and chilly, though Mitch and Kathryn’s hot tub and fireplace offered much solace as we eased into winter.

It seems like the age gap between Morgan and Juliette lessens with each visit – these two were thick as thieves, happily bouncing from one activity to another together. Coloring! Dolls! House! Shopkins!

The age gap between Elise and Jules, though, is bigger than ever… This kid would be content to spend an entire day quietly cuddled under a blanket with a book. Kindred spirits, Elise and I.

Despite Saturday morning’s drizzle, we found ourselves itching to get outside. We warmed ourselves with lattes and vanilla steamers and then headed to Mount Tabor Park for a playground romp.

Northwest kids ain’t gonna let a little rain keep them down!

Post-playground, the girls set up a cozy den of sleeping bags and kicked back with a couple of bowls of popcorn and a movie.

And then the moment the credits started rolling on Trolls, the kids were raring to go again.  Back out we went, this time to Westmoreland Park.

We’ve been coming to this playground for the past couple of years, and it’s been fun to see Juliette become a bit bolder with each subsequent visit.  I’ve held her hand as she’s traversed this log a dozen times or more.  Now, though, “Let me do it, Mama!”

Morgan and Juliette deemed me the “bad witch” and banished me from their fort with their imaginary wands.

In the end, though, we all made up.

A sitter came over on Saturday evening to stay with the kids and the grown-ups went out to toast to my mom’s birthday with burgers and beer.  Ahhhh, a table free from coloring sheets and back-up snacks!  What a luxury!  Happy Birthday, Mom.

I woke up on Sunday morning to find that Elise and Juliette had renewed their affection for one another.

Post-breakfast was, of course, PARK TIME.

My heart gets a little ooey-gooey when I see these three put their arms around each other.  I’ve held each of these girls as babies, felt my world rocked with abounding love as I looked into their eyes.  And now, golly, they’re so big.  So different from one another.  And all so beautiful.

Thanksgiving most definitely started early this year – I’m feeling mucho gratitude for this family of mine.

Juliette has been begging for a Portland trip for weeks now, calling down to me well after she’s been tucked into bed to forlornly cry, “Mommyyyyyyyy?  I really miss my cousins!”  We finally found ourselves with a free weekend and were happy to indulge her – it had been far too long since we’d crossed that Oregon/Washington border!

We arrived in Portland around lunchtime on Friday and headed over to Milk Glass Market for a healthy hipster lunch.

The weather was beautiful and we had a couple of hours before Morgan and Elise would be out of school, so we hopped on our bikes for a family ride on the Marine Drive Trail.

Sweet, sweet serenity.

And gosh, how ’bout those freckles?!

When we got to Mitch and Kathryn’s, Juliette excitedly hopped in the car with her aunt to go pick up the girls from school.  When they returned together, Juliette was beaming.  And Elise was…TALL.

Morgan was long-haired and beautiful and sporting a brand new smile.

We spent the afternoon watching the kids run circles around the yard, went out for a hearty dinner, and then it was back to the house for more lawn shenanigans.

I heard the pitter-patter/stomp-stomp of children’s feet early the next morning, but enjoyed the luxury of lingering in bed for a bit as Morgan and Elise have become so adept at looking out for their kid cousin.  Plus, SHOPKINS!

Morgan had her last soccer game of the season on Saturday morning and we all showed up to cheer her on – she’s got some serious hustle!

I was a little taken aback by how much Morgan has changed since we last saw her at Christmas – she seems so much more confident, so much more independent now.

And Elise!  Wanna move to Seattle and be our new babysitter???

There were certainly moments when the goalie was caught picking daisies 10 feet outside the goal, but all in all, these girls played a pretty focused game!

Juliette wanted in on the action, so Elise engaged her in a one-on-one match.

Good game, Miss Morgan!

We ate lunch back at the house and lounged around for a bit, but were soon back out the door with our three amped-up girls plus a friend of Morgan’s.  We drove down to George Rogers Park to catch some afternoon rays by the water.

I figured that surely the water would be too cold for them to put their feet in, but what do I know?

My little Northwest Hula Girl…

We spent awhile on the playground and then went back to the house for more Front Yard Olympics.  Temps topped out at nearly 80 degrees that day and I stretched out on the lawn with a pint of Mitch’s home-brew, soaking up the sounds and smells and tastes of summer.

Shane and I celebrated our 11th anniversary that night with dinner at Pok Pok while Mitch and Kathryn (and Elise) watched Juliette.  As we sat across from one another, we cried (those crazy-spicy bird’s-eye chilis!) and laughed (those crazy-good mango-mint cocktails!).  It was a superb meal with a superb man.

We ate waffles for breakfast on Sunday and then the girls took a spin around the neighborhood with Uncle Shane.

We spent the rest of the morning at the Kenton Street Fair in North Portland, walking a tight rope and shooting arrows and chasing giant bubbles.

Such focus!

Juliette had her first sno-cone and declared it so, so, soooooo delicious.

We hit the road around lunchtime and Juliette crashed hard near Olympia.  She woke up an hour later, wondering “When are we going back to Portland, Mommy?”  This girl is insatiable.

Seattle was very somber in the wake of the election last week and by Friday Shane and I were ready to get out of town.  So we packed our bags and headed to the faraway land of…Portland!  Which was actually just as somber a city as Seattle, if not more so, but there was comfort in being with family.  We rolled up Friday afternoon and headed right to the playground, as Juliette was eager to run free with Morgan and Elise.

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Sitting on Mitch’s front porch and watching the kids play tag has become one of my favorite Portland pastimes.

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Juliette bunked with her cousins that night, and as soon as all was quiet in the kids’ room, the grown-ups gathered in the living room to crack open a bottle of wine and pour our post-election hearts out.  I don’t know that I’ve ever spoken so candidly with Mitch and Kathryn about politics and religion, laying bare my hopes and fears.  I so appreciated their insight and refusal to despair; my brother is ever the optimist, my sister-in-law level-headed and fair.  We ended with evening with a rousing game of Cards Against Humanity, which had all of us doubled over with laugher, tears streaming down our faces.  Gosh, it felt good to get goofy.

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The kids woke obscenely early on Saturday and all of us dragged a little throughout the day as a result.  We lounged a lot, napped hard, played Candy Land and did puzzles and took inventory of Morgan and Elise’s 200 Shopkins.  Shane and I snuck away in the evening for a drink at The Bible Club, a cozy little speakeasy in Sellwood, and recharged with stiff cocktails and some kid-free conversation.

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Sunday morning was gray and quiet; Mitch made a frittata and the girls did more Shopkin-trading.  Juliette pondered the future from her window seat.

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By 10 am though, the kids were over the whole lazy-Sunday thing, so we headed over to Westmoreland Park to ride bikes and climb trees.

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We grabbed a treat at Grand Central Bakery in Sellwood and let the girls burn off their cinnamon roll sugar-rush with a walk through town.

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With that, it was time to say our goodbyes and hit the road.  Juliette cried as we pulled away from the curb, begging to go back to Morgan and Elise’s house.  Soon, kiddo, soon!  Christmas is just around the corner.

Trips to Portland are fewer and farther between since we had Juliette, but it feels like every time we go down there, we think, “What took us so long?!”  We made it to Mitch’s house around lunchtime on Friday, after an easy (although not altogether quiet) drive.  As soon as we walked in the door, Morgan grabbed Juliette’s hand and said, “Do you want to come play in my room?”  And with that, they were gone!  The girls spent the next hour trading baby dolls back and forth while Shane and I ate a peaceful lunch and caught up with Mitch.  This cousins thing is money.

Elise came home from school a couple of hours later and we spent the rest of the afternoon hanging out in the yard, cardboard sledding and testing the range of the rope swing.

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Last time we were in Portland, Juliette was happy to play the part of the baby.  Now it’s, “Come sit on my lap, Elise!!!”

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We ate dinner at the house and then took the kids out for frozen yogurt in Multnomah Village.  Nothin’ like an up-past-bedtime sugar high…

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Saturday was cool and damp, so we opted for a morning indoors at OMSI, bouncing from the giant sand box to the turtles to the earthquake house.

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When we got home, Morgan and Elise offered to put Juliette down for a nap.  I’ll give you one guess as to how well that went.

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But finally, once the cousins were sent upstairs and I let Juliette climb into our bed, she slept.  As did I!  We woke up refreshed and ready to hit the hot tub.

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We closed the day out with a trip to the library and playground, followed by dinner at the neighborhood Mexican joint.  Not a shabby Saturday!

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Sunday morning was quiet and lazy, perfect for coffee-sipping and lounging indoors (until the kids started climbing the walls, at which point we headed up the street to do our coffee-sipping at Starbucks).  Kathryn and Morgan went out to run some errands while Elise enjoyed some solo time with her little cuz.

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Elise is really into the Harry Potter audio books right now, but quickly learned that Juliette isn’t the most attentive listening companion…

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So out to the trampoline we went!

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We closed out our visit with what has become our traditional living room dance party.  The grownups and Elise pooped out after a couple of Miley Cyrus songs, but Jules and Morgan rocked out to what felt like Billboard’s entire Top 40 Pop.

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One last snuggle for the road as I prepared for that familiar ache of missing my nieces…

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See you sooner rather than later, Jarrells!

We’ve been to Portland, we’ve opened gifts, Juliette has mastered the first two verses of Away in a Manger, and now I’m making my peace with the fact that it’s time to take down our increasingly droopy Christmas tree and call it a wrap.  But Christmastime 2015 sure was good while it lasted…

We headed down to Portland on Christmas Eve with a trunk full of gifts and baked goodies.  Juliette was a champ in the car – I didn’t have to resort to pulling out the candy canes until we were just a few miles from the Oregon border.

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We spent the afternoon lounging around the house, snacking and doing puzzles and testing the waters of Mitch and Kathryn’s new hot tub.

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All three girls were completely mesmerized when we turned on The Polar Express after dinner.  I told Juliette to sit back and relax, but the excitement was just too much!

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Christmas morning was a gift-opening bonanza, as the kids tore into present after present.

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And then…that magic blanket of quiet that falls over the house as the kids play with their new toys and the grown-ups pour themselves another round of coffee.

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Interrupted only by a brief-but-hilarious puppet show, courtesy of Auntie Kathryn.

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By late morning we were all ready for some fresh air, so we donned our hats and jackets and headed outdoors for a few laps around the front yard and a trip to the park.

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Juliette falls a little more in love with Elise with each visit.  “Elise, sit by me?  Elise, hold my hand?  Where Elise go?  Eliiiiiiise?”

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I made sure Morgan knew that if she ever felt the least bit left out, I was ready and willing to hug it out!

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Mitch pulled off a killer Christmas meal, complete with country ham and smoked brisket and roasted veggies.  There was much to toast to at dinner that night.

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We spent Saturday morning at Westmoreland Park, braving the cold for the sake of letting the kids get their wiggles out.

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This is my dad doing his best Mary Tyler Moore.  Nailed it.

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Cousins!

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The afternoon was quiet – naps and Magna Tiles and books.

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And then Jules woke up!

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Shane and I decided to beat the Sunday traffic and hit the road back to Seattle Saturday night, hopeful that Juliette would snooze in the car.  And what better way to tucker out a toddler pre-drive than a living room dance party?!

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Things got crazy.

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My brother is the best.

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We said our farewells and tucked Juliette into her car seat for the long ride home.  I felt those first twinges of the post-Christmas blues while we were on the road – sad that the anticipation was over, disappointed that Shane and my poor mom had been laid up with colds for much of our time in Portland, a little nostalgic for years gone by as I reminisced about Christmases past when Elise and then Morgan and then Juliette were wee little babies.  Gosh, how time flies.

I didn’t wallow for long, though – Sunday was a perfect, cozy day at home and I reveled in seeing Juliette enjoy her gifts (those Magna Tiles are money!) and then tidying up, doing an end-of-the-year closet purge so that we start 2016 off on an organized note.

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And it turned out there was still merriment to be had!  We took Juliette to see the lights at Gene Coulon last night to put one last check mark on our list of holiday traditions.

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It was a crisp, clear gorgeous night.

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Blues, shmoos – this kid has been all joy this past week.

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And with that, I think I’m ready for the New Year.  Praise be to God for a blessed Christmas season.

Holiday season is officially here, ushered in with a cozy Thanksgiving weekend in Portland with my brother and his family.  We rolled up to their house Thursday around lunchtime and settled right in.  Morgan and Elise, how I’ve missed you!

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Jules was also thrilled to be reunited with her cousins, hardly leaving their sides for the duration of our stay and whining, “I want to see Morgan and Eliiiiiiiise, mama!” when it was time to head downstairs for nap or bedtime.

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While Mitch and Kathryn slaved away in the kitchen on Thursday afternoon, Shane and I gladly took on kid-duty, bundling up the girls and running around with them in the backyard.

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I love you, Jules.

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The wind picked up and froze our fingers and noses, so we headed inside to drink tea and paint turkeys.

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We feasted that night on beef stew and turkey and stuffing and roasted veggies.  We took turns saying what we’re most thankful for, and family topped the list for each one of us.  Actually, Morgan might have said cookies, but I’m sure family was a close second!

Friday morning was chilly but sunny, so Kathryn and I jetted out for a trail run while Shane held down the fort at home.

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We came home to a house of stir-crazy girls, so we all headed over to a nearby playground to get the wiggles out.

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Ahhhhhhh, that sun!

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Sufficiently dosed with fresh air and vitamin D, we were all content to spend the afternoon inside, doing puzzles and reading by the fire.

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We went out for dinner that night at a nearby brewpub, threw the kids in the tub, promptly tucked them into bed, and then opened up a bottle of Port to commemorate a day well spent.

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Saturday was another gorgeous day, but we got a slow start and let the girls hang out in their comfy polka dot footie pajamas until mid-morning.

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Finally, we rallied and drove over to George Rogers Park to check out the beach.

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Who says you can’t play in the lake at the end of November?

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I think Juliette was wearing thin by this point, a little fatigued by trying to keep up with the big kids.

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Luckily, I had a magic fruit snack in my pocket!

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Morgan was insistent that we check out the playground, which turned out to be an excellent call, as it was a sunny spot stocked with beautiful new play equipment.

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They even had Twister!

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Elise and Morgan took turns riding in the back of our car as we went to and fro, and Jules loved having a backseat buddy.

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We spent another quiet afternoon back at the house, again curled up by the fire for a book/puzzle/board game bonanza.

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We said our good-byes and hit the road to Seattle on Saturday night.  Juliette chattered and sang until finally letting her eyelids fall shut around 9:30, when we were just 20 minutes from home.  Luckily, she hardly protested when I moved her from the car to her crib, too tired to put up much of a fight.  We’d all played hard over the past couple days.  We had run, swung, climbed, skipped rocks, laughed, done that dang monkey puzzle 87 times.  We had found much to be thankful for.

The drive to Portland on Friday was uneventful – Juliette didn’t sleep at all, but she was content to sit in the back seat with her new Elmo book and her bag of dried mangos, so we’ll call it a win.  We settled into Mitch and Kathryn’s for the final leg of our vacation and the girls took up right where they left off, tearing through the house thick as thieves.  Once the kiddos were finally put to bed, the grown-ups sat around the table eating pizza, drinking wine, and talking late into the night about the joys and perils raising daughters.  It’s cool, feeling a deeper bond with my brother since we’ve both become parents.

We got a slow start on Saturday morning.  Let me rephrase that – I got a slow start on Saturday morning.  Juliette, Morgan, and Elise woke up roaring to go.

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I suggested we all go out to Sauvie Island to some berry-picking.  Shane checked the forecast and said it might rain, but I shrugged off his warnings, optimistic that the skies would clear and we’d spend a couple of hours frolicking among the rows of bountiful blackberries.  Turns out I really should have trusted that weather report.

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We did manage to pluck a couple of pounds of fruit, but called it a day once our jackets were thoroughly soaked and our shoes so caked in sticky mud that we could hardly lift our feet.

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Thanks for being such good sports, kids!

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It was nice to change into clean, dry clothes and settle down for naps.  Elise helped with storytime, calming Juliette down after a busy morning.

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And then she got Jules riled up all over again!  I couldn’t bring myself to break it up, though – Elise is such a delightful goofball.

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And Morgan!  So sweet!  Most of the time.

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Once naptime was over and the rain clouds cleared, we shepherded the kids back outdoors.  Their energy is endless.

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Throughout the day, Juliette and Morgan were either the very best of friends or were engaged in a fierce bout of tug-of-war over some toy or book.  I think Morgan isn’t quite ready to relinquish her title as baby of the family, and for reasons I just can’t comprehend, Juliette seems to be used to always getting her way!  Plus, there’s a whole lotta strong, strong will between the two of them.

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But dang it, there’s also a whole lotta love.

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Elise is all growed up – helpful and kind, but also playful and silly.

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I asked the girls to pose for a final cousin photo before we took off.  SMILE, ladies!

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Thanks, Mitch.

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We got in the car one last time on Saturday evening and plowed on home to Seattle.  We pulled into our garage around 9:30 pm, just as Juliette’s eyelids were starting to get heavy.  We unpacked in a flurry and hit the hay hard, more thankful than ever for the comfort of our bed (and crib).  What. A. Trip!

Total miles logged in the car:  1,400

Miles logged in the car while Juliette was sleeping:  ~25 (not per our plan)

Miles logged in the car while Juliette was screaming:  ~20 (not too shabby!)

Number of lakes and rivers visited:  6

Number of deer spotted:  13

Number of times Juliette looked out the car window and asked, “baby deer???”:  312

Number of times we talked about moving to Bend:  3

Number fond memories made:  So, so many.

It’s been three years since our last trip to my mom and dad’s house in Central Oregon – I blame the rugrat.  But Friday we piled into the car with our boatload of “essentials” (Pack n Play, booster seat, stroller, king-sized bag of dried mangos) and hit the road.  Things got off to a shaky start, as we hit traffic 15 miles south of Seattle and spent an hour crawling toward Tacoma.  We hit traffic again near Portland and were all at our wit’s end when we finally rolled up to Mitch and Kathryn’s house after nearly five hours of driving.

Thankfully, a couple of glasses of Mitch’s home-brewed beer and a couple of hours of watching the cousins happily run free in the yard, and all was well again.

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We spent the night in Portland and took a morning stroll with the girls in their new neighborhood before undertaking the second leg of our journey.

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But first, a quick stop at the farmer’s market to eat donuts and Pine State Biscuit sandwiches with the Chens, who happened to be in Portland for a weekend getaway.  The kids ran circles in the lawn, shrieking with joy as Jack tossed them in the air.  We were glad to see Jules getting her wiggles out, as we had another four hours in the car ahead of us.

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This is the third or fourth time we’ve hung out with Jack and La Verne at this particular farmer’s market, and it seems that it just keeps getting better and better…

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Shane and I sighed anxiously as we said good-bye to the Chens and strapped Juliette into her carseat – she had refused to nap in the car the day before and had spent the last hour of the journey wailing “mama’s lap!  mama’s lap!”  We braced ourselves for another tension-filled few hours.  But…she was great!  She read to herself for awhile, sang songs, slept a bit.  Crisis averted!

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We arrived at my mom and dad’s house in La Pine mid-afternoon and quickly got settled – Juliette reacquainted herself with Grandma and Grandpa, ran in the sprinklers, ate watermelon on the back porch.  We took an evening walk and all crashed a little early that night, ready to fully slip into vacation mode.

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Shane went on a monster bike ride on Sunday morning while the rest of us went into Sunriver for coffee and some playground time.  We all spent the afternoon at North Twin Lake, wading in the water and eating a picnic dinner on the sandy shore.

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My mom and I slipped away for a walk around the lake and as we strolled along the forested trail, I was reminded that I am very much a mountains person – I love the roar of the ocean, but I’ll take the rustle of pine needles blowing in the wind any day.

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We were up and at ’em early on Monday and drove over to La Pine State Park to splash in the water and get some sun.  Juliette made a bee-line for the river, soaking her shoes and dress while ignoring my futile shouts of “wait!!!”

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I think she might be a mountains person, too?

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On Monday afternoon Shane and I left Juliette with Grandma and Grandpa and set off on our own little kid-free adventure.  Stay tuned.