28 September 2017

Road trippin' 2017

In August, we took to the road. Gotta get our "fun road trip vacation" completed, after all.
Now that we've moved, we are 3 hours further away from our destinations than we were before. Oh well. We're tough.
We all got through 2 days of driving with lots of snacks, a few breaks to play tag, some silly "jokes" (what do you call a tree than talks? A ba-nee-boo-ba! HAHAHAHA!), and some Disney music.
We even got to stop by a visit some friends in Calgary, which kiddos loved.

Finally, we made it to my parents. First order of business... assess how Craig's elbow looked. Before we left, he'd fallen and scraped his elbow. No big deal, he's 3, kids do stuff like that all the time. Except instead of getting better, it got a strange "blister" of skin and then that opened, leading to a strange open wound that wasn't getting better.
We took him to a doctor in Edmonton the day before we left, and we're never going back to that office again. They did nothing, and it was worse, or at least not better, by the time we got to Oregon.
So instead of joining us for a family get-together, Kyler took Craig to urgent care. Yay for travel insurance... Two different types of antibiotics later (oral and topical), and you can hardly tell anything happened.
But, seriously, what is it with this boy and strange infections? Thankfully Craig is good at taking his medicine.

And, of course, second order of business: playing in the hammock.

There were two reasons we timed our trip to Oregon when we did. The first is that this week was our tenth (!) wedding anniversary. The second was because of the total eclipse. Yup, nerds. My parents' house was just outside totality, with 99.53% of the sun covered. Much better than the 60-some percent in Edmonton.
But we didn't want to deal with traffic with three little kids, so we just walked over to Hazeldale Park to enjoy it.
The park was pretty popular and it felt like a party.
We had altered the kids' eclipse glasses (or "goggles," as Craig called them) by adding paper plates.
The park&rec people at the park added some elastic to the back so they stayed on little faces. It was excellent.
Caleb didn't have a pair of glasses, not that he'd keep them on if he did, and our plan was to have him sit in his stroller, turn him away from the sun, and put a towel behind him so he couldn't see that way.
That plan was for naught, but only because instead he fell asleep and I just held him.
The eclipse was really cool. We had heard about shadow snakes and did get to see them. Something I hadn't expected was that the light between the shadows of the trees became a smaller and smaller crescent.
It was awesome.
And no one had any eye damage, so, success!

The day after the eclipse, we headed to OMSI and experienced their Pompeii exhibit, among other things.
But not my children. No joy for them.
I still regret it. Calista and Craig, despite being super excited to go into the exhibit and find the dog from their volcano book, both found the movie about the eruption a little too loud and intense.
They (especially Calista) are still talking about it, saying it scares them... although mostly when we are trying to get them to do something they don't want to do, like go to bed.
The rest of OMSI we loved.
My favorite part was doing science experiments with Craig. But there were lots of places to play and loads of things to discover.
Great fun... except Pompeii. Never again, apparently.

As is required by me every time I go to Oregon, we took a trip to the coast. First we headed into Cannon Beach where we ate some stellar fish and chips and bought chocolate... yum.
Then it was down to Oswald West. We loved the coast, and everyone got to do just what they said they wanted to do most:
Dig in the sand,
build sandcastles, 
stand in the water and run away from the waves,
fly kites,
watch the kiddos play, 
eat sand, 
and have a grand old time.
I love visiting the ocean. I love the salty breeze, the sand between my toes, the waves coming in. Being on the coast refreshes my soul. I love it.

Often while we're in Oregon, we only go places and do things that we've done before. While we did a lot of that this time (see our beach day), we also went to a new place or two. Specifically, the Elk Rock Garden. This place was pretty cool, and really randomly situated. If you don't purposefully go looking for it, you'd never find it. So, it's a pretty quiet place. The kids liked to hedges they said were a maze,
and did not like posing for pictures.
We still got a few anyway.
After the garden, we headed to the temple to have a picnic and walk around the grounds a bit.
Always a nice time.

Then on Friday, it was Kyler and my 10th anniversary!
In the morning, we went on a nature walk.
And in the afternoon, we left the kids in my family's capable hands (they ate pizza and played on a pirate ship, according to the kiddos) and headed downtown. We went to the Oregon Historical Society and wandered around there for a bit before going out to dinner at The Melting Pot.
Neither Kyler nor I had ever been to a fondue place before (little kids with impatient grabby hands and simmering oil are not a good combination) and it was a lot of fun. And very tasty!

Also to celebrate our anniversary and our new house, Kyler and I bought artwork! We found a piece we liked from an artist in the Portland area, and ordered a signed print that would be ready when we were there, and we could then drive home. Easy, peasy, right? Well... the print shop made a mistake and made the picture twice as big as it was supposed to be: 40x60 inches! Suddenly we were in doubt if it would fit in the car... but after quite a bit of jostling our car's seats around, and making Calista climb in over Craig and Caleb's seats the entire way home, we managed to fit our print in the car and get it home to Edmonton safely.
Pretty awesome, right? Happy anniversary and house warming to us!

And, with that, we were on the road again...
Kiddos were pretty good and we made it all the way to Cranbrook, where we swam in the chilliest hotel pool ever.
The kids had fun, but their teeth were chattering by the end.
But we survived, and then made it back home the next day and happily didn't have to drive anywhere for a day or two.

Happy road tripping!
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