Lincoln City Beach

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It was the perfect day for a hike. Adam had found what appeared to be a secret cove in Lincoln City Beach, and the idea of a secret beach surrounded by two cliffs sounded appealing.

Unfortunately, we were only able to hike a little until we came to a gate with barbed wire. It turns out the cove wasn’t much of a secret, but a wildlife sanctuary. Half the path to the cove was blocked by a bear and cougar sanctuary and the beach itself was the bird sanctuary.

Our disappointment was short-lived as the views from the top of the hill was amazing.

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We stopped by the actual beach itself afterward and people watched.

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On our way back to the car, we saw an elk and a deer! It was a good way to spend an afternoon.

Anniversary – Part 2

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I finally got to head up to Timberline Lodge.

Timberline Lodge is a National Historic Landmark. It’s located on the south side of Mt. Hood. There is a Timberline Trail around Mt. Hood that is 40.4 miles with an elevation gain of over 8,000 feet. Needless to say, we just hiked around the beginning of the trail while I snapped some pictures.

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The views were gorgeous.

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Anniversary Part 1

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It’s been busy the last two weeks. Adam just got done climbing Mt. Rainier – one of his easier climbs but the weather was so unseasonably warm that the quick pace was more tiring than usual for him. I was just busy dividing time between exercise, work and friends.

So, with that being said, we wanted our anniversary to focus on rest and relaxation this year. Since I had a bachelorette party on Friday, we decided to start the celebration on Saturday and take Monday off so we could have a three day weekend.

Once that was decided, Adam wouldn’t tell me more. On the day of, he surprised me with a weekend in Welches, Oregon. He rented the most beautiful cabin and we enjoyed a peaceful weekend together.

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The home was so carefully decorated. I have always wanted a small, modest house in the city, but this cabin really presented a persuasive argument for a bigger home near the mountains.

One of my favorite feature about the cabin was the amount of light that was let in the room. Windows were everywhere and there were skylights throughout the home.

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Adam also added thoughtful little surprises throughout the weekend. On our way to Welches, he put on some music. After a few songs, I finally figured out it was our playlist that we had given to the DJ for the wedding!

He remembered to bring our iPhone speakers for the house so we could have the playlist play throughout the weekend. Another of my favorite touches was that he brought our Nintendo/SNES emulator for us to play together.

Sadly, I think Contra (Adam’s favorite game) either requires extra blowing or may need to be professionally cleaned.

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The cabin also supplied its own bocce ball set..

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And ping pong table.

I love playing ping pong, and Adam admitted that was the only thing he was looking for when searching for a cabin.

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It was so much fun at the house.

Adam and I took turns cooking throughout the weekend. We only ate out once, when we went up to Timberline Lodge, but more on that in Part 2.

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As the temperature cooled down, I was so elated that the cabin also had its own private hot tub.

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This is probably our best anniversary yet!

It’s so nice having so many great adventures available close to home.

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King And Lionheart

And as the world comes to an end

I’ll be here to hold your hand

‘Cause you’re my king and I’m your lionheart.

 

Listening to this on repeat today. Happy Thursday.

A White Bedroom

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I love the simplicity of a white bedroom.

I recently repainted my walls white. I love the transformation from a dark bedroom to a light one. The room makes me feel so clean. I want to make the bed every morning and get rid of any clutter. I’ve already gotten rid of all furniture except for the bed and one nightstand. I even got rid of the headboard.

I love it so much, the study room is next!

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Siouxon Creek

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Holy crap. Siouxon Creek. It’s the most wonderful swimming hole I’ve ever had the pleasure to visit. Words don’t do it justice.

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The first two miles in was gorgeous. A variety of foliage, towering trees, lots of shade… it was the perfect hike.

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The trail followed the creek. It looked so inviting. We kept stopping our hike to explore the creek.

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The entire trail is 4 miles and then you loop around for a total of 8 miles. 2 miles in, we found this amazing watering hole. The sun was shining down. The water was so clear. There was no one around. It was just too much.

Adam, the dog and I jumped in. The water was so cold, but with the sun beaming down, it was the perfect opportunity for a swim.

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The rocks formed a lovely wading area around the edges, which created the perfect spot for sun bathing. In the center, the water was so deep, I couldn’t find the ground. It was so perfectly structured, I almost felt like we were in a surreal Disney World theme park.

There was one setback: our dog. He found the water too cold and deep for swimming. He was fine dog paddling in the water by himself, but once we jumped in, he was certain that we were both drowning. He tried to herd us to shore, but we didn’t heed his instructions. Then, when herding didn’t work, he started trying to grab us to shore. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have any thumbs and left us with a few scratch marks.

His panic was so adorable, funny and slightly annoying. We enjoyed our swim but after a while, it was clear he felt we were in deep danger. I gave him a jar of peanut butter to distract him, but he still had his eyes on the water. We swam for another hour and then had a picnic by the rocks.

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It was the perfect way to spend a Saturday. I can’t wait to go back in August when it gets really hot.

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The Moth at Holoscene

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I can finally cross off another item off my bucket list: attending a moth storySLAM event.

I finally got tickets to the Moth. I’ve tried so many times to get tickets at Secret Society (a beautiful, intimate space) and each time, tickets were sold out within minutes. I was so glad when they finally decided to add on another venue. Holoscene is a much bigger space and just as gorgeous.

The theme for the night was “Altered”. I was enjoying the show, listening to some great speakers and writers talk about a memory that touched upon the theme, when, to my surprise, my friend Amy was next to speak. She had remarked earlier that she really wanted to be a part of the show, but I had no idea she had spoken with the MC and gotten herself a spot.

Unlike most of the speakers for the event, she did not practice her story at all. She just got up from her seat and told a story about how she almost married a refugee from Russia and how she almost considered deporting him when their relationship did not work out. She said the moment altered her view of herself. She felt horrible to even consider deporting such a sweet, kind man. She ended the story saying that she hoped he was happy and that she grew from this experience.

I applauded as loudly as I could when she was finished. I was so in awe of her – I’m terrified of speaking in public, especially following such talented speakers who had spent weeks practicing their story. Her story also blew me away. It’s so crazy that even after a year of knowing a person, it turns out there are still so many facets of themselves that they haven’t even shown you yet.

Angel’s Rest

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I went to Angel’s Rest for the first time.  Angel’s Rest is a short 5 mile hike roundtrip. The trail didn’t have any waterfalls, not a lot of foliage and yet, there was just something profoundly beautiful about it.

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The hike was challenging, but the view was amazing. I loved the open space and the fresh air. It’s definitely one of my favorite hikes in Oregon.

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Cape Lookout State Park

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I love the water.

I was so excited for my first group camping trip near the beach. Last year, I stayed at the beach with my husband in a yurt. It was a great experience, but in the middle of November, it was a cold one. This past weekend, a dozen friends and I went to Cape Lookout.

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Just over the hill is the gorgeous Oregonian beach. We took a short drive to the cliffs and took a leisurely hike. The view was breathtaking.

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We took advantage of the beach as much as we could, heading out there every day and night.

The campground itself was like any other campground, but we reserved two sites instead of one. It was a great idea and gave us more privacy.

We took turns cooking throughout the weekend. Personal favorites included the breakfast hash cooked in bacon drippings, steak skewers and french toast. My husband and I made bacon grilled cheese sandwich and corn on the cob. So glad that we chose a simple recipe as cooking for sixteen people proved to be a little overwhelming for me!

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We hiked along the coast, did morning yoga on the beach, played Cribbage and Poker, and sang throwback 90′s tunes. I had brought a book, but didn’t even find time to read it. It only rained on the last day (hey, it’s still Oregon) and luckily, it happened as we were packing up to leave.

Weekend Trip to LA

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I love Portland. The laidback, polite, outdoorsy drinking hole that is my home is the perfect fit for me, but sometimes it’s nice to get a different change of pace.

Last weekend, I flew to LA for a weekend trip to visit my sister from another life, Lin.

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I stayed at her loft in downtown LA. She warned me of Skid Row, just a few blocks nearby, but thanks to her careful navigation, I never saw anything in her neighborhood but beautiful shops and an amazing city life.

I think the highlight of the trip is when she took me to a Korean spa. It was a huge culture shock. I’ve never been to a bathhouse or anything like a Korean spa before, but I warmed up to it.

The main difference between a Korean spa and an American one  is that a Korean spa is considered more of a beauty maintenance routine than a relaxation treatment. You’re expected to be naked in the spa (at least on the women’s floor) and the scrubbing and massage is handled efficiently and without much fanfare. I left raving about Korean spas to everyone.

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We walked down Venice, the beach, went to a Wine & Cheese event and even had an impromptu Game of Thrones  watch party. The remaining portion of our trip was all food, food, food.

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LA has such amazing food. I had amazing desserts at Bottega Louie, fantastic italian food at Teroni for Lin’s birthday and Boiling Crab was my favorite restaurant that we visited. I have been craving crawfish ever since I left Oklahoma and it hit the spot.

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We also went to a lot of Asian restaurants. Portland has a few good asian restaurants, but not many are in Portland metro. I ate a ton of asian food while in California to make up for lost time. I thought I was finally over my asian food craving, but when I came home, I got ramen for dinner.