We sneaked away for a few days after the wedding. Just our little family. I don't know when we've ever needed anything as much as we needed that time away, together, not worrying, not working, not having anyone/anything competing for our energy. About thirty minutes into the trip Nate announced Rule No 1 -- have fun! We were so good at keeping rule one :)
Here's how we did it:
we got Sprite when we went out to eat. and even dessert at the chowder bowl - homemade marionberry cobbler with vanilla ice cream. mmmmm!
we saw fantastic creatures at the aquarium
we paddled around the waterfront in a wooden boat
we ate ice cream cones as big as our heads at the tillamook factory. we toured the cheese making plant and it was amazing. over a million pounds of milk are delivered every day! so much dairy!
we pulled off the road when we saw pretty spots and went for nature walks. henry got wet every. single. time we encountered water (a fountain, the rain, a puddle, a river, a lake, falling in the hot tub at the hotel fully clothed!). i know that boy so well, i packed at least 8 days worth of outfits for a 4 day trip. we used every last one; he rode home in his swimsuit.
we ate at the chowder bowl in newport and loved it.
we watched basketball games on tv in the hotel at night
we listened to the BFG three times in the car. such a highlight!
we went to the children's museum, rode the monorail and strolled pike's market in the pouring rain!
the kids slept in the loft at the rigby's and thought it was the best thing ever. we decided that if we're ever lucky enough to get to design a dream house, we would put "loft bed" at the top of the list.
we played monkey in the middle at the hotel pool and turned pruney in the hot tub (that we had all to ourselves!)
we pulled off the road when we saw a sign that said "lab puppies for sale." we held them and shook our heads at their adorableness and the kids begged to take one home and nate and i stood our ground even though our hearts were twisting and squeezing for those fuzzy little guys and for our funny little lady who was carrying one under each arm like they were her dollies. such a little mama, that one.
we laughed and played and stayed up late and ate too much and remembered a few things about balance and self-preservation and living after the manner of happiness. and every time i looked around the van at my little travelers i just swelled with lucky, blessed, thankful feelings.