Luke, Patty, Anna Kate, Caroline, and Eleanor

Luke, Patty, Anna Kate, Caroline, and Eleanor

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Trip to Oregon!

Well, I hope you all like pictures, because this post is going to contain about a thousand of them! July has been such a whirlwind month in the Tolbert household that I feel like I am just beginning to catch my breath and get back in our regular routine. Our biggest adventure this month was a trip for the girls and myself out to Portland, Oregon, my hometown. This was a completely spur-of-the-moment decision that I am so glad we made! Luke came home from work on a Tuesday and said, "Do you and the girls want to go to Oregon on Thursday?" Seriously? My parents were scheduled to be in Oregon for one more week for my mom to continue recovery from her hip replacement surgery, so it was perfect timing to be able to see them, as well as my grandparents, aunt, uncle, cousins, and lots of little second cousins!

We booked our tickets, packed up all of our necessities (which I got down to two suitcases, two carseats, and two backpacks, thank you very much!), and headed to the Charlotte airport. We were scheduled to have a 45 minute layover in Dallas, and to arrive in Portland at 9pm (midnight our time). Well, that 45 minute layover turned into a crazy 5 1/2 hour layover due to weather conditions, mechanical failure, crew absences, you name it. Thank goodness for the super fun play area in the DFW airport!

The girls were really fantastic and could not have done better on the flights or in the airports. Well, I guess they could have slept a little more, but I guess they were too excited! We finally arrived in Portland at 2:30am (thanks, Dad, for picking us up!).

While I have homes in many places, I never feel truly home unless I can look up at the horizon and see this sight.
Mt. Hood

Anna Kate spent a lot of her time reading stories with anyone and everyone who would listen or read to her!

Amelia Bedelia with Grandpa

And "Goldie" (my childhood favorite!) with Great Grandpa!

We also enjoyed the absolutely perfect Oregon summer weather (it was in the 70's and sunny the whole time we were there!) by going to various playgrounds in the area.


The "Imagination Station" is a magnificent playground near my childhood home. My girls loved it as much as I did!

Mom (Grandma) pushing AK on the swings. Pretty good for 5 weeks out from hip replacement, don't you think?!?

 A new park with Great-Grandma

I love these next few pictures because they bring me back to my own childhood spending many days at Grandma and Grandpa's house. This red tractor has been well loved by my grandparents' three children, eight grandchildren, and now fourteen great-grandchildren!

And who doesn't love watching little girls perform on the big stage that is the family room hearth?!?


My Aunt Patty (who lives in Seattle) even made the 3+ hour drive to come and see us and meet Caroline for the first time. We are so grateful we were able to spend some time with her (and of course her goldendoodle, Lucy!).

One evening we had a big family get together and my girls were able to play with all of their little second cousins! It was so fun to see everyone who was able to make it!

Benaiah isn't quite big enough to get in on the blueberry picking, but he sure is cute!


Picnic time!


Sweet cousins


Mayson and Caroline became fast friends. Mayson loved making Caroline giggle!

Mommies and Babies!
From L to R, Sophie with Benaiah, Gabriel and Sarah; April with Lane, Blake and Mayson; and me with Caroline and Anna Kate! Evie, we sure missed you and Emery!

The rest of our time in Oregon was spent enjoying simple moments just being together.

Snuggling before naps

Cooking with Grandma

Evenings on the patio


Cuddles on the couch

And of course, Grandpa teasing Anna Kate!
"Don't laugh, Anna Kate!"

"I said, DON'T laugh, Anna Kate!" 

After a wonderful, but all-too-short week, it was time to say our goodbyes and head back home. The girls loved seeing all the mountains from the airplane.

Mt. Rainer (background) and Mt. St. Helens ('s the one without the top!)

Rainier and St. Helens (Left) and Mt. Adams (or is it Jefferson?) on the right

And the most beautiful of them all...Mt. Hood


Goodbye, Oregon, see you next time!

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