Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Taking On The Pacific Coast Highway - Day 9

Stop 24 - Lavender Fields in Sequim: We started the day with a relaxing drive through the lavender fields in Sequim. I have been wanting to see the lavender fields in bloom for quite some time so this was an exciting moment for me. 

We ended up changing our plans a bit on this day since we decided to make a last-minute stop in Puyallup to see Ryan's sister. We basically scrapped the rest of our plans for the day and headed straight to Puyallup so the kids could spend some time with their cousins. On our way, we came across a small ice cream shop that operates out of a few old train cars. Although the restaurant is shut down now, we couldn't pass up a chance to get out and explore the train cars before continuing on. 

Once we arrived in Puyallup our car ended up breaking down requiring it to spend the next day in the shop getting repaired. The cost of fixing it was not a fun expense but we felt is was a tender mercy fro the Lord that the car ended up having this issues in Puyallup with family as opposed to when we were on the road. Once the car was fixed we continued on Spokane to spend the next several weeks with Ryan's family. By the end of the trip we were exhausted, sunburned, and a few pounds heavier but we figured that was a small price to pay for some of the greatest memories we could ever ask for as a family. Until next time PCH!



Monday, June 27, 2016

Taking On The Pacific Coast Highway - Day 8

Stop 22 - Hoh Rainforest: We started the day off with a drive through the Olympic National Forest on our way to the visit the Hoh Rainforest area. The weather was perfect and the kids had fun running ahead on the trails. Many of the trees' root systems came above ground creating little caves for the kids to play in and all of the trees were cover in a thick moss. The kids fell in love with one particular "cave" that looked almost like a little hobbit house. Maeli loved playing with the moss and spent her time trimming the moss on their house and putting the moss on sticks to serve as lollipops for the boys. 

Stop 23 - Lakeside in the Olympic National Forest: After hiking through the Hoh Rainforest we drove a bit and found a perfect little rocky beach right along the water in the Olympic National Forest. The kids put on their boots and spend a couple of hours playing on this beach. Maeli worked hard to accomplish her goal of climbing out to the edge of a log hanging over the water and discovered a little area she referred to as her "fort." The boys spent their time throwing rocks, filling up cups of water, and exploring with Maeli. This was one of those unexpected gems of the trip that quickly became a memory that will last a lifetime. 


Sunday, June 26, 2016

Taking On The Pacific Coast Highway - Day 7

Stop 18 - Tillamook Cheese Factory: Our first stop of the day was at the Tillamook Cheese Factory. The highlight was getting to go upstairs and watch the factory machinery in action. The kids just stood in awe as we moved from window to window watching the cheese move through the factory. The kids enjoyed the long line of free samples at the end of the tour and REALLY loved the large ice cream cones we got them before getting back on the road. 

Stop 19 - Haystack Rock: We were planning on just making a quick stop at Haystack Rock but decided to hang out for a while so the kids could get a break from the car. We laid out the beach towels, grabbed the sand toys, set up some music, and whipped out the kite. The boys played in the sand, Maeli flew the kite, Camp slept on the towels, and Ryan and I sat their soaking up that perfect moment. Nothing monumental happened at Haystack Rock but it will forever be one of the highlights of our trip up the PCH. 

Stop 20 - Goonies House: After leaving Haystack Rock we drove to Astoria to visit the famous Goonies House. One of the nearby neighbors stood and talked to us for a while about the house before we headed up the driveway to get our picture. Cooley decided he didn't want to cooperate and refused to get in the picture. 

After leaving the house we stopped at an old boat that had been converted into a small fish and chips stand and Ryan and the kids ate a dinner of fish and chips before we continued on our way. 

Stop 21 - Cape Disappointment: We finished our day with a quick stop at Cape Disappointment to see the beautiful views from the lookout points. 


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Taking On The Pacific Coast Highway - Day 6

Stop 15 - Crab Fishing in Yaquina Bay: We started the day off with our crab fishing gear at Yaquina Bay. We were hoping for an experience similar to the ones we had in Ireland where we would have several bites within a few minutes of having the line in the water. Unfortunately, the crabs did not get the memo and we didn't even see one crab. Despite our lack of success, the kids had fun trying.

Stop 16 - Devil's Punchbowl: Our next stop was a quick one at Devil's Punchbowl in Oregon. If we had more time it would've been fun to hike down and explore the inside of the bowl but with a busy day ahead we figured a quick look was better than nothing.

Stop 17 - Lincoln City Kite Festival: Next we headed to Lincoln City for their annual summer kite festival. The city was crazy busy so we parked in an outlet shopping center and took a shuttle bus over to the event. Upon arriving at the festival we sat and watched some of the professional kite flying performances choreographed to music. After watching for a while we walked over to the waterfront and busted out our overpriced Minion kite we had purchased in Chinatown. Although neither of us have great kite flying skills we actually got the kite UP! We were especially grateful for the extreme wind that made it much easier to get the kite up in the air. 


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