Saturday, August 30, 2014

Got Milk?

Got milk?

Taylor loves Strawberry Milk, actually.  Logan will only drink milk that's chocolate flavored.  I love hot chocolate, personally.  

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Daddy Daughter Date

James took Taylor on her first, official "mt. bike" ride.  She was soooo excited!  

She got Daddy/Daughter time, a ride in the convertible and more time off road on her new bike!  How cool is that!

They went on a real off-road trail.  James took a few pictures. 

They rode a total of 4 miles.  James said that Taylor did awesome!   

Now everyone is planning all kinds of family mountain bike rides. 

It's been a long time since the days when Taylor went on a bike ride in this manner.  

Taylor was 10 months old in this picture.  (She's always loved being near Logan).  Her first bike ride went well and was apparently uneventful, as is evidenced by Logan's ability to sleep through it.  Logan was 3 years old in this picture.  

Seems so long ago now.  How time flies.  It's gone by in a blur.  I look at these pictures and I can hardly remember them at this age.  I can only think of them at the age they are now.  

I don't remember that one of them was usually up in the middle of the night, just about every night.  Or how tired I was all the time.  Or that I had to change diapers.  I don't remember that I was constantly cleaning up messes they made.  

I just have an overwhelming feeling of sweet love for them when I think back to when they were so little.  I think about their tiny little hands and voice as they wanted me to pick them up and hug them and they'd say, "I love you Mommy, can I have some crackers?"

Sometimes I wish they were that little still.  But then I wouldn't be able to say, "Go get your own crackers."  

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Coastal Pictures - July 2014

I've taken so many pictures of the beach since we moved here.  Every time we go down I take more pictures.  They are becoming difficult to manage.  So I'm going to share some of the ones I took in July.  

A family of seals are frequently seen on this rock.  They are usually out during high tide, when people can't get too close to them without getting wet. 

So this is as close as I could get.  I'm not getting wet just for a better picture of some stinky seals.

We haven't seen them in awhile now, as we've mostly been going to the beach at low tide.  

 Here are a few low tide pictures.  That's Face Rock. 

We wandered in a different direction one day and found that the smooth, sandy beach became a pebbly beach.  I don't know if that's normal or not.  

Another shot of the pebbly beach.  I really like the clouds in this picture.  I think I'm a "clouds" person.  

Unfortunately, many days on the coast are foggy, even when it's sunny just 2 miles to the east, so I don't always get to see those puffy, white clouds I love. 

Foggy and windy afternoon on the bluff, overlooking the beach.  You can hardly see the ocean behind Logan. 

Sometimes we stumble upon other peoples' creations, like this sandcastle.  

 This driftwood arrangement reminded us of a boat,

with it's mast and bow. 

There is something relaxing and awe inspiring about watching the waves come ashore.   

I don't know if you can capture that feeling on film.  It might also have to do with the sound of the surf and the vastness of the landscape, all of it together creating that sense of beauty and calm.

I keep taking pictures of the waves anyway, but it just doesn't do it justice.

 A few pictures taken from the bluff.

 Some Coquille River Lighthouse shots.

 We've lived here for 3 months now and have yet to go to the lighthouse.  We really need to do that.  

We have a pretty good view of it though, just across the river. 

 More beautiful clouds.  The lighthouse is there too, in the distance.

Logan now wants to be in the Coast Guard.   So we walked down to the harbor one day and let him get a closer look at the Coast Guard boat.  

Fun on the boardwalk. 

"I love going to the beach!"  

So, there you have it.  The month of July on the coast, in pictures.  

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Early Birthday Present

Logan & I went to town the other day to run a few errands.  Taylor stayed home with James.  In the middle of our errands, I get a text message from James...

with this photo.  Somebody got an early birthday present! 

Taylor had really outgrown her old bike.  She needed a bigger one.  Her birthday isn't until October.  So we decided to give her the bike early, so she could enjoy it during the summer.

She LOVES it!  It has hand brakes, a front shock and a kick stand!!!  Wow!  Such a big girl bike.

After riding it up and down our street a few times, she was ready for some dirt! 

James & Logan have gone on mountain bike rides together, but Taylor could never go because she didn't have the right kind of bike.  Well, now she does and she can't wait for her first real mountain bike ride with her dad.

She's doing great adjusting to her new, bigger bike.  Hopefully she'll get more dirt under her tires today.  She's our fearless girl and is always ready for an adventure.  

She says her favorite part about the new bike is, "that I can do more off-roading with it."  

Happy Early Birthday, Taylor Girl!

Friday, August 8, 2014

1st Camping Trip of the Summer

It's been a pretty eventful summer.  It actually started in late Spring, with moving and graduation.  Then there was our trip across the country and James started working.  I think we're getting settled now and used to life in the "real world."

So the other weekend was our first opportunity to go camping this summer.  We decided to go somewhere we've never been before, to explore the area around where we now live.  

So we drove about 2 hours before we found a campground we liked, that wasn't full.  We set up camp, ate a nutritious lunch of hot dogs and Pringles.  Then we headed off to find a hike we'd never done before either.

After driving for another hour, this time all on a gravel road, we came to a deep ditch across the road.  James managed to get us across it.  We'd already been skirting potholes and sections of washed out road.  

But a few minutes later we came to another ditch across the road that we just weren't willing to attempt.  We were all alone in the middle of nowhere, with two kids.  The last thing we needed to do was get stuck.  

So we started hoofing it.  We figured the trailhead couldn't be too far.  

We had glimpses of amazing views, through the trees.  

I found myself wishing there weren't quite so many trees, they were hindering my views.  

It was warmer than we are now used to, living right on the coast as we are.  Just a few miles inland is usually much warmer.  

So Taylor used her "magic" grass wand to turn this pinecone into an ice cream cone.  It didn't work though, no matter how many times she tried.  Hearing the word, "ice cream cone" over and over again, did make me wish we had one though.  

We walked for over a mile before we came to the trailhead.  And then it didn't immediately turn into a trail, it stayed gravel road for awhile longer.  

The trail finally started.  It was very rocky.  We just walked for a mile or less before turning around.  We hiked over 4 miles total though.

We made it back to the car and munched on chocolate/chocolate chip cookies that Logan had made the day before.  They were the most delicious cookies ever!  It was such a treat to have homemade goodies out in the middle of nowhere.

This view is the best one we got.  It was on our drive back to camp.  It was just amazing to see mountain, after mountain, after mountain.  And all covered in dark evergreens.  

This area is so much more vast than we ever suspected.

Back at camp, the kids found a shallow river.  

 So, of course, they had to throw rocks into it.



"I could do this for hours."

Taylor started putting sticks in the water and then prodding them along.  She said she was like the Holy Ghost, helping the stick in the journey downriver.

"Ooh, here it comes." 

After dinner, the kids wanted to get in the tent.  I think they wanted to get away from the mosquitoes, and they just like being in the tent.  It was late evening, but not dark yet.

We'd been serenaded by our camping neighbors all afternoon & evening.  They were playing their car radio loud enough for the entire campground to hear.  Granted, it was a small campground and there's no barriers, except a few trees, between us.  

At first they were listening to mellow, country music.  We came back from our hike to classic rock playing.  Then they switched to rap.  We went into our tent, but it doesn't have any sound blocking abilities, so we put a movie on James' iPad.  That helped... until the movie ended and our neighbors were still playing their rap music and shouting in a drunken sort of way. 

We tried to ignore it.  None of us were comfortable or able to sleep.  Finally, Logan spoke up.  He told us he felt very uncomfortable, hearing that music.  So we decided to leave. 

We hurriedly packed up, threw everything into the car and left at 11pm.  We got home around 1am, Sunday morning.  

I went to church Sunday at 10am, only because I was being sustained & set apart for my new calling as a counselor in Relief Society.  The rest of the family stayed home and slept in.  It had been a long, rough night. 

We had had a great day, the day before though, setting up camp, hiking, eating outdoors, throwing rocks in the river and hanging out in the tent.  

Maybe we'll think about camping again this summer, but not until we stop itching from all the mosquito bites we endured.