Even More Seaside Vacation!

Earlier this week, we found a park on the south end of town that never had any other kids, but does have a really fun rock wall to climb.

As an added bonus, blackberries grow profusely behind the building next door. Benji enjoys picking and eating them, but still has to practice sharing. Mom asked him to give her a berry, do he picked one, put it in her hand, then immediately snatched it back and popped it into his mouth.

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We’ve also made it to the beach a few more times; despite low, misty clouds plaguing us every morning, must afternoons fine up and allow us some play time.

This coming weekend (I think) is a big sand volleyball tournament, with 2,000 teams and 140 nets. I mention this because we got to watch the Bobcat tractors with giant drill bit thingies drilling holes for those 280 poles. Benji’s been talking about it (using primarily elaborate charades supplemented with sound effects) for days.

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Yesterday Ian’s parents came down to join us for a couple days. Here are some miscellaneous pictures from these days.

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My Son

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On Monday, we visited Grammy and went for a walk near her house. Lots of vehicles to point out. They were so cute, walking along holding hands.

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Less on the cute scale and farther along the revolting scale, we have a delightful trick Benji has learned recently. Mmmm… lovely view, and lovely for the windows, too.

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Here’s what we drew on the sidewalk today, knowing more rain is coming. This last three months has brought so much torrential rain, we’re ready for some nice drizzle, or even some (gasp!) consecutive dry days. But meanwhile we get chalk drawing in between downpours.

Vacation: Summing Up

So here’s the rest of what happened on vacation: We read books, went for walks and hikes with and without the baby, my parents arrived (much to Benji’s incredibly cute astonishment), Deborah left, Ian and I celebrated our 10th anniversary, and we all drove home. Here are some pictures from all that stuff.

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With Grammy (not pictured) at a county park near Seaside, seeking sun. We found it for a little while, but clouds advanced relentlessly and we eventually had to concede defeat.

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Gee, the similarity between my mother and the model is striking.

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Mom had lots of fun reading with Benji. He’s a masterful flap-opener in those types of books, and the peek-a-boo book with farm animals is his very favorite. He gets so excited he has to lick the pages. That’s a lot of excitement.

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I’m so glad I went to the bathroom at the bakery in Gearhart. Otherwise I would’ve missed crocodiles in the bathtub, and that would have been sad. Makes me wonder what they did in the men’s room.

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Dad and I rode across the Highway 101 Business route bridge from Astoria to the west-ish on our slightly-longer 50-mile ride. Aside from this bridge we had a nice ride, but the bridge had that pointy, criss-cross metal decking not rideable by bikes. Fortunately a sidewalk did offer an alternative… a 4-foot-wide, 2-foot-high alternative bordered on one side by logging trucks (as you can see from my picture) and the other by Youngs Bay. We walked across.

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Ian, Dad, and I went to Oswald West State Park on Friday morning and hiked to Cape Falcon/Falcon Cove/Point/Ridge/whatever it was called. This turned out to involve standing at the edge of a precipice with nothing but rocks and ocean below… but rewarded intrepidity with gorgeous (if misty) views.

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One evening, after a long day of dense clouds, the evening fined up and we got some lovely clouds and sunlight just at sunset. I tried to do a panorama shot with my camera but the accelerometer seems damaged, because it lost where I was at in the circle and I ended up with discontinuities in all my attempts (this problem continued for other panorama shots after this point, too). Bummer. I really like the panorama feature, and can’t easily replicate it with my nice digital SLR.

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On Friday, August 9, Ian and I celebrated our 10-year anniversary (I know, we’re so old) with an afternoon in Seaside and dinner at Newman’s at 988. I’ll just say that I had no idea you could get such amazingly delicious food in a tourist town. For our gift to ourselves, we bought a large (open edition) giclèe print of a Jeffrey Hull watercolor we really liked, called “Out to Sea”:

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Our last morning there, we went for our morning walk and, lo and behold, sun! …at least, brighter light, anyway. It was nice not to finish our walk covered in dampness from the heavy mist.

Then we drove back, and the least said about that the better. Suffice it to say, Benji and I will be taking a break from the car as much as possible this week.

Just for Fun

A while ago the Boa-Dragon (which Rachel and I found at a garage sale for $0.50) got urped up on. It happens. So I washed it, and since this was during the hot and sunny weeks we had a bit a go, I hung it on the line to dry with everything else.
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Not your usual sight for laundry hanging out to dry, huh?

Here are a few pictures I took of Benji while Ian read him a story a couple weeks ago.
Reading With Daddy is Fun

"I LOVE Reading!"

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I'm Just Cute
His mad scientist hair is starting to lay flat. I’ve known this would happen some day, but it makes me kind of sad that the crazy hair phase is ending. Yesterday after Benji’s bath, his hair actually stayed down flat, and even after sleeping on it, it’s just fluffy, not standing up straight like it has before. Aaahhh, our baby is growing up so fast…!

Speaking of which, he’s army-crawling astonishingly efficiently these days. I foresee baby-proofing in our immediate future, since outlets and cables seem to exert a disturbingly strong allure to crawling baby. As does anything hard he could bonk his head on, of course.

In short, watching Benji slowly (rapidly) turn from a slug into a little person is really an astonishing and delightful experience. I’m really enjoying nine months.

Living In My House

Day’s Verse:
Everyone had to travel to his own ancestral hometown to be accounted for. So Joseph went from the Galilean town of Nazareth up to Bethlehem in Judah, David’s town, for the census. As a descendant of David, he had to go there. He went with Mary, his fiancée, who was pregnant…
Luke 2:2-5

If you lived here, this is what you would see.
Living in My House
And it would be normal.