This summer, we finally had the equipment and the support to do what we’ve wanted to do since moving to Portland: go camping.
We were invited by some friends to go car camping with a whole bunch of families, which sounded ideal because there would be plenty of confident hands assisting us, and lots of other children for the kids to play with.
So, off we went. We went to Barview Jetty Campground on the Oregon coast, which was flush with the amenities that would make Marti in particular comfortable, such as running water, flush toilets and hot showers.
We live in the PNW because we love everything about it, and we live that reality out. At every opportunity, we’re out seeing all of the beautiful sites around us.
For whatever reason, in the first two springs here, we didn’t get a chance to make it down to Tom McCall Waterfront Park to see the cherry blossom trees blooming in early spring, but we didn’t make that mistake this year.
We have a lot of cherry blossom trees here in Portland and they’re just a beautiful adornment to an already beautiful city.
Since we went up to Mt Hood a few times this winter to go sledding and tubing, we also took the opportunity to build ourselves a snowman. It was actually quite hard to build, because the snow was very dry and pwdery, so it didn’t hold together too well (which is why he looks so emaciated!).
Ever since Jack has been on the scene, the interest in monster trucks in our house has gone through the roof.
So to treat the kids, we took them to see Monster Jam at the Moda Center. The kids definitely needed their ear protection (the sound really reverberates inside the arena), but they had a great time watching them do their tricks.
After we discovered Jess and Jon at Cascade Photography last year and fell in love with the great job they did on our family photos last year, we asked them to come back and do some more photos for us this year.
Fall is a perfect time for family photos in Portland because the leaves are beautiful and colourful and of course we can include those pictures on our Christmas cards.
While we didn’t explore quite as much as I would have liked this summer, we certainly got out and saw some new places. We did a few hikes, explored some new places and did a few activities like riding the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad.
This summer, we made the decision to take our family vacation in Bend, OR. Bend is characterized by the high desert climate, notably different from the wetter climate on the west side of the Cascades (where Portland is), but its craft beer scene and its many options for outdoor adventure.
It was a pretty low-key affair and more than anything, it was just a good break from the everyday slog of life at home, but while we were there, we definitely took the opportunity to do some activities that we wouldn’t ordinarily be able to do.
December was largely a write-off because of sickness throughout the house, however we got right on with enjoying the new year.
Ellie spent a fair amount of time building the Lego sets that she got at Christmas. Ellie and I also participated in a 13-week Daddy-Daughter Ballet class: she was definitely the better ballerina, but it was nice to have that special experience with her.