I’m going to do this post in a photo essayish style. Mostly because going through our pics there were just so many good ones. And, all worked so well to tell the story of our recent getaway to…
Located on the Oregon Coast, about twenty miles north of Tillamook, Rockaway is a typical small beach town. It is home two two campgrounds often rented out for large parties. Camp MacGruder is where I spent five consecutive Mother’s Day weekends as a Girl Scout and Twin Rocks is the site of Gladstone School Districts annual Outdoor School, where the sixth grade spends one week studying birds, tidepools, ponds, beaches, plants and survival. Of course, my real affinity for Rockaway is my parents beack house. Purchased in 1998, we began vacationing there the summer before I went into eighth grade. Through the years this house has been opened up to more people then I’ve even met, most notably the Gladstone Boys Varsity Soccer Team for five or six years running.
We left Edmonds about 11am last Friday and arrived around 4pm. The trip was dreary, as it poured the whole way there, but our timing was pretty good considering I didn’t have to stop once! Saturday the weather was more or less the same. Tony snapped this picture on the beach…I think while I was in the shower?
Between Tony and I, my parents, Trista and her friend Gabby (juniors who are almost seventeen), Alyssa and her friend Kristi (eighth graders who are almost fourteen) and our golden retriever lab, Squeaker, we had a full house and some antsy teenagers. We did a lot of puzzles:
In the afternoon we ventured to the Tillamook Cheese Factory. Nothing new for anyone except Tony…but free cheese samples, ice cream and a chance to get out of the house appealled even the girls.
Being Spring Break in Oregon, the place was packed and cheese production was on hiatus! Still, Tony attempted to snap a good photo of us in front of the production line.
He didn’t have much luck. My mom stocked up on some specialty cheeses that made Tony very happy. Weird things like Black Pepper Chili Cheese Cheddar and others I don’t even remember. We all had ice cream, I had Marionberry Pie, my mom had Mango Sorbet, Tony had a Strawberry Cone and I think all the girls has chocolate chip cookie dough. Actually, Trista didn’t, she had a massive pepperoni stick (which we also brough home to my dad). The rest of the day was spent altogether consuming copious amounts of the first season of Project Runway. tony and I were avid watchers of the third season but no one else had seen the show before. I think this was the first time my mom has ever watched a full reality show! Below is how we spent a good ten or so hours
Sunday was absolutely gorgeous! Tony and I started the day taking Squeaker for a walk on the beach.
Poor dog is really struggling and my mom almost put her down before the weekend, but after giving her a nice bath decided she should have one last visit to what is probably her favorite place.
Either thirteen of fourteen years old, it’s hard for Squeaker to get into the back of the car and she’s too large for my dad to help her. She’s constantly too hot and pants non-stop as if unable to breathe properly. Plus she has arthritis. I got worried we’d walked her too far when she got kinda weezy and wanted to just stand in all the muddy puddles as we made our way back through town.
The sun brought everyone out, from our beach house as well as the campground. One lady flagged us down (I swear just because I’m pregnant everyone thinks I’m who they should tell all their business to) to remark on the weather and how happy the couple getting married back at the campground was. Taking into consideration the weather at the rehearsal the day before, we were not surprised!
I found this sea plant that he was using as a whip. I don’t know the scientific name but Tony does…part of growing up in a marine biology lab. It’s fascinating to walk on the beach with him as he explains everything both from a scientific perspective and from that of a little boy who knows nothing else. Look at this pose my boy struck for the camera!
While I did spend some time exploring the beach and even walked down to put my feet in the surf, I will admit the majority of the my time was spent here. In my defense, Sunday marked my official entrance into the third trimester!
Before long Alyssa and Kristi came down to visit us. Alyssa is at the age where she hates all photos of herself but I love this action shot and am sure she’ll appreciate the pictures later. Perhaps much later…
Tony followed the girls down to the water to show them the tiny jellyfish I found…he was familiar with them and said sometimes they light up at night and were the basis for flourescent lightbulbs. I wanted to take them back and see them light up in the bathroom but Tony said they follow the lunar cycle. Note from Tony: I couldn’t tell which jelly larvae they were in particular, but figured aequorea was as good a guess as any and at least I knew a bit about them. The flourescent lightbulb stuff was what remained of my attempts to explain GFP and I don’t think the lunar cycle is true (?) but the cute little fellas seemed happier on the beach. Nice to see Ashley absorbed some of it. We also saw reams of velella, which I was unfamiliar with but at least recognized as a cousin of the portugese man-o-war.
The following is a little series I snapped on Tony running back up the beach…to his girls. In the first, he is the one off to the right.
Later my dad made an appearance. He had been at the house tending to my mom who, having an entire week off of both work and school, had finally allowed herself to get sick. She slept until noon which I have no memory of her ever doing. we were all glad she had the opportunity to just stay in bed and have people cater to her for awhile. And by awhile, I mean a[little]while. By dinner she was us helping Alyssa and Kristi cook us a spaghetti dinner…that she wouldn’t yet be able to eat.
My dad ventured down to deliver Kristi’s cell phone, which had apparently been ringing off the hook.
If you’re wondering where Trista and Gabby were all weekend, it’s because they spent a lot of time napping on the couches. Of course, this could have something to do with the fact they shared a room with Tony and I who both snore. Mine, I swear, is pregnancy related. Right?
This last picture was taken Monday morning and I have to include it just because Alyssa is my kid sister and who else loves her enough to embarass her so. Anyways, she knows this is much better than the one I took of her still in bed! Plus, it captures that teenage attitude she’s perfected so well.
Monday we attempted to leave at 11:30. The first we went back after four or so block because I forgot my birth certificate my mom had brought for me. The second we got almost a mile away before we passed Trista and Gabby trekking back from somewhere they wouldn’t admit to going (my dad informed us a boy from school was staying at nearby Lytle Lake) and gave them a ride back to the house. We finally got on the road at twelve. In Seaside we stopped to get some salt water taffy from this place called The Buzz. Seriously, it’s the best, most flavorful taffy you’ve ever had. I strongly recommend Caramel Popcorn and Cinnamon Roll. We made it home about six thirty…after stopping at Tony’s work, the bank and Fred Meyers. It was a wonderful weekend and so nice to spend some time with my family for the first time since Christmas. For those wondering, or not aware, there was one missing member. My brother Jordan, recently turned twenty, was home with his car getting a new transmission (and I’m sure enjoying having the house to himself).
I was going to write about what I’ve been up to since then, but this post took forever! After our site was somehow (perhaps even maliciously) deleted either yesterday or this morning, I am just grateful this post was still possible and all our others were able to be resurrected. I’m also borderline elated to have those island pictures gone from the top. Not exactly what I’d consider flattering…especially the first one.
Dunno if anyone made it this far, but kudos if you did!