Monday, June 30, 2014

Western Oregon

Before heading out to Oregon for summer vacation, I made a list of the things I wanted to be sure to do:

  1. Spend time with family and catch up with old friends
  2. Eat at Burgerville
  3. Fly a kite, eat pizza, and buy fudge at Cannon Beach
  4. Hike the Gorge's Eagle Creek trail up to Tunnel Falls
  5. Drink a huckleberry milkshake at Government Camp
  6. Visit Grandma and Grandpa in their new home
  7. Walk/Run/Bike/Kayak/Hike in the sunshine around Bend
These are some of my favorite things to do in Oregon, and I'm happy to say we've hit them all during our visit!

The first four things on the list occurred in Western Oregon (Portland, the coast, the Gorge, and Mt. Hood). Here are some photos taken along the way...

Old friend, New baby

Parents, waiting for pizza!

Haystack Rock

Lest you think this photo was spontaneous and easy (well, it was spontaneous, but it took a few tries), here is the sequence of photos that led to this one great shot.

First attempt:

Crooked horizon, bad timing

Second attempt:

We hit it this time, then I almost face-planted in the ocean. Thankfully my brother did not assume I was trying to tackle
him, and he actually saved me from a cold, wet fate.

Brother and I waiting in line at the fudge shop... we find ways to amuse ourselves.

Eagle Creek Trail, Punchbowl Falls

I'm fairly confident I don't have to explain to you why I wanted to do this hike! The pictures speak for themselves, and while we didn't actually make it all the way to Tunnel Falls (6 miles in), it was a beautiful day to walk in the woods!

I did not get a photo of the huckleberry milkshake, so instead I'll share this
photo of the most delicious strawberry milkshake in the world. 

That covers a lot of the Western Oregon portion of our trip.  Later, Central Oregon!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Road Trip!

Whew! It's been a while since I've posted, eh?

Ted and I have been in Oregon for a few weeks now, after driving here from Ohio with our two cats. The drive went pretty smoothly, with the cats resigning themselves to their fate and sleeping most of the way. We had to free them from the cage on the 3rd day in the car, when Minnie decided she was just not having it anymore.

I mean, can you blame her?

She was basically Milo's pillow for three and half days.

Driving cross country can be both exciting and tedious at the same time. The first day went by quickly as we left Ohio, crossed Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and entered Nebraska. We were tired at the end of the day, but we felt like we had made a lot of progress.

The second day, not so much.  Day 2 was like:  Nebraska.... Nebraska.... Nebraska...  Oh yay! Finally! Wyoming! ...Wyoming.... Wyoming.... Wyoming.... more Wyoming... Oh god when will it end?? Wyoming.... OMG! Utah! Utah! I can't believe it! Utah!

It was beautiful, but it felt like it took forfreakingever.

Anyway, we were tired of being in the car by the end of Day 2, so we made a last minute decision to stop in Boise on Day 3 rather than drive all the way through to Oregon. There we met up with some old friends who put us up for the night and showed us around town. We love Boise!

Please excuse my road-weary appearance and focus on C. She looks cute.

We peeked inside the capital building (yes, we are nerds), and I got to try out the panorama feature on my phone for the first time.

After that we did more normal things:

Well, semi-normal.

We hiked up this huge hill (in our flip flops) in Camelsback Park in the Hyde Park District. 

The views were awesome. 

On the final day of our trip (Day 4), we drove from Boise to Portland. And my heart swelled to 10 times its size when we crossed the border!

Ahhhhhh..... :)

This may look dreary to you, but it looks like heaven to me!! :)

In the next post, I'll put up some pictures of our adventures here in Oregon. We'll be leaving to head back to Ohio by the end of the week, so we're doing our best to enjoy it here while we can!

Friday, June 6, 2014

OMG It's Friday

Kinda snuck up on my there. It's 4:00pm here, and I just realized it's Friday.

I guess I'd better throw together some highlights!

OK, so this is most definitely NOT a highlight, but I just have to mention it because it has been at the forefront of my attention all week. 

I got poison ivy.


I'm fairly certain it was a transfer of poison ivy oil from the cat's fur to my body. It's all over my chest, neck, and both arms, and I do not remember rolling in a bed of poison ivy any time lately. And man, this stuff itches like crazy.

I will spare you the hideous photos. 

Now that the 'low-light' of the week is out of the way.... I did have some good times this week. :) This spring I'm really enjoying my walks and picnics in the woods with my husband. Today I went for a walk with a friend and the dog she's dog-sitting. The forests are lush and beautiful right now, and the weather has been just perfect!

I've had two meetings in Middletown this week, but Ted's had the car so I've taken the shuttle bus. Yes, this is a highlight! There are the nicest older gentlemen who regularly ride at the same time I do. And Ron the bus driver is just a delight. They all speak with a Kentucky accent, and they love to talk about the good old days. I thoroughly enjoy the 50 minute ride.

Along with riding the shuttle, I've done a lot of walking around town to run errands. The weather can't be beat, and with my new iPhone I stop and take a lot of photos. It makes running errands more relaxing and enjoyable.

Last, but not least, I'm planning on using my homegrown mint to make mojitos tomorrow evening. The mint has begun to take over my herb pot, and this seems like the perfect way to use it up!

No cat pictures this week, but there have been plenty of those on Instagram! If you want to follow me, you can find me at tigermack03. :) Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Summer Weekend in Oxford

This past weekend Oxford was a little more hoppin' than usual. The students are, for the most part, gone for the summer, which leaves the regular townsfolk to party!

We started the weekend off with one of Ted's orienteering meets in College Corner (just outside Oxford).

In case I haven't mentioned it before, orienteering is a race of sorts. You're given a map of the area marked with checkpoints (controls). You have to visit each control in order, checking in with a finger flash drive, and you want to be the fastest one to do this.

This picture is from an orienteering meet in Wyoming last year,
but it shows Ted checking in at a control.

Also in Wyoming.

The controls are usually off the beaten path, so you have to tromp through forests, splash through streams, cut through fields, etc. You can use a compass for all this, but good orienteers rely mostly on the map.

Back to College Corner, Ohio...

The race this past weekend was a little different. You had to get to as many controls as you could and be back at the finish in 1 hour. I tried to run with Ted, but he outpaced me pretty early on as we were running across this farmer's yard (his dog was SUPER excited to have us running through).

Ted did very well. I think he placed 3rd (without a watch to track the time, too!). That's my husband.

Our reward after all this exercise (well, after all of Ted's exercise as I quit the race and got myself an iced latte) was the Oxford Wine Festival!

For $20 we got an Oxford Chamber of Commerce tasting glass and five tasting tickets. There were booths set up from local businesses alongside the wine booths. There were also a few food booths and a rotating set of musicians on the park stage.

The wines weren't all that fancy or great, but we had a good time and got drunk surprisingly fast. Here are a few of the wines we liked:

The Cuvee des Ardoises and the Frog Prince were pricier (they required 2 tickets for a taste - sheesh!), but the Carnivor and Sequin were just regular old grocery store wines (unless you live in Colorado where you can't buy wine in the grocery store. Le sigh.). All are reds, except the Moscato, which was a sweet and bubbly white.

Sadly, we accidentally left our souvenir wine glasses at a local restaurant, The Quarter Barrel, after we stopped in to get some lavash post-wine festival. I guess we weren't altogether 'with it' at that point. :)

Next weekend is our last weekend in Oxford for a while as we will be driving westward to Oregon next week! We're planning on staying for an entire month, so the cats are coming with us. Of course, there will be blog updates along the way. :)