Friday, September 12, 2014

Family beach trip

(WARNING: This post contains a TON of pictures!)

We have been wanting to go to the beach all Summer, and it's been so busy, we haven't had a chance to go.  We finally set a date to go with my parents for the day, but that morning, my mom woke up sick.  The kids were a bit disappointed, so I went online, and found a hotel so we could stay overnight.  They were excited again!  We didn't get away as soon as we wanted, because I now had to pack overnight clothes, and we had to take the dogs to my parents' house.
We finally got to Lincoln City in the early evening as it was cooling down.  The kids agreed that it was probably a bit cold to play in the water, and everyone was hungry.  We decided to go to Mo's for dinner and clam chowder, and play on the beach in the morning. 
Dinner at Mo's- with coloring pages, and all the saltine crackers they wanted.  Score! 
(Not really sure what Natalie's face is all about.  I think she was mimicking something)
We had a view of the ocean from our room, and even though you couldn't really see it at night, the kids wanted to go out on the balcony and watch it.
Good thing I brought coloring books, because as soon as we got settled, they asked, "Can we color?".
A calm and quiet activity, that won't disturb our neighbors?  Sure!
Overcast morning on the balcony
Our view of the ocean
As we packed up to leave, and head to the beach, everyone had to carry their own backpack. I was going to carry Natalie's, but she wouldn't hear of it.
While it was overcast in the morning, it turned out to be a gorgeous day on the beach.  The temperature was mid-70's, and the wind was only about 7 mph.
Ready to tackle the sand!
Anthony's back went out from our not-so-friendly hotel bed, so he was only able to go down to the water for a little while. 
Natalie just had to taste the sand!
The water was actually warm!
I guess she didn't get enough of a taste the first time. Yuck!
Some action shots- jumping into the water
The kids found a crab.
It was dead, so they had to give it a proper burial
Natalie finally decided she was done playing, and ready to take a nap
So she cuddled up in my lap, and went right to sleep.
After we got done playing on the beach, we cleaned up, and decided to drive up the coastline, and enjoy the beautiful day.
All of the kids fell asleep in the car.
Our next stop was the Tillamook Cheese Factory.
Watching the cheese-making process
Of course, we HAD to get ice cream!
The kids' response to the smell of the dairy cows.
It was a beautiful drive home.
The moon was so bright!
I thoroughly enjoy our family time. I love the way the kids interact and participate in what we are doing.  Car trips are more fun as they have gotten older, mainly because they understand we are actually going somewhere fun, and also because they can entertain themselves in the car.  
Looking back over the past 7 years, I see how time has flown by, and I want to slow it down.  I don't want them to grow up so fast.  I want them to still enjoy playing in the sand, splashing in the water, burying a dead crab, and just going to get ice cream.  In the car, I enjoy hearing, "Mom, do you want to sing songs?" and "Do you want to play the alphabet game?".  Then, to top it all off, looking in the back to find four exhausted children, with sunburned faces, sacked out in their car seats, completely spent from the days' activities.
Anthony used to tease me about all the pictures I take of the kids.  However, as they have gotten older, I see him going back through our pictures, and reminiscing about how cute they were and the fun times we've had.  I have realized how important it is to cherish all the time we get to spend as a family, and enjoy even the little things, because they grow up way too fast!

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