Saturday, September 20, 2014

Memories at the Beach!

Wow! It was time for us to pack again! Though, this time, it was for our annual trip to Manzanita Beach. This could perhaps be labeled the best part of the year for our family; a time when we can spend every moment together, enjoying all of our family traditions.
We set off this time with one rule: No technology was to accompany us; which included no iPads, iPods, or computers.

It was dusk when we began the two hour trip down to Manzanita. The car was filed with excited chatter. It wasn't very long before we started passing through all of those familiar places that we know so well.

We knew that we had entered Tillamook when a thick fog rolled in and covered the open fields of farmland replacing the 90 degree heat of Washington. The smell of cows greeted our noses giving that feeling that we were finally there. Someone called out, "Entering Tillamook"and everybody put down what they were reading, woke up from their naps to stare out the window and sight those first glimpses of Tillamook.

It was dark by the time we drove through the old town of wheeler. By that time, the car had become quite silent, and the talking had died down and only the hum of the motor could be heard.
No one could claim to be the first one to spot the ocean as it was then fully dark and the fog had completely settled in. The "G" on the mountain representing Garibaldi was all lit up.
Then Manzanita town came into view with its familiar landmarks...The Sand Dune Hotel, Big Wave Cafe, and Calvary Bible Chapel. Some of the shops were lit up with lights providing a warm welcome. But the biggest cheers erupted when we first spotted the B's Nest cabin.
We were finally together again as a family, at our favorite place in all of the world, for a whole ten days...everything was exactly the way it was last year and like Jonathon said, it felt like we were home.

The week was a very relaxing time giving everybody a chance to catch up on sleep, finish half read books, and talk for hours on end. We filled the time with family traditions...for as Tevye said, "Without our traditions, our lives would be as shaky as a fiddler on a roof..."
There is always that annual stop at Freddie's for specialty chocolates, or that day spent at the Astoria Farmer's Market buying kettle corn and corn on the cob; There's that recipe of homemade ice-cream and the stop at Mainstreet Pizza. Building Puzzles together, jumping waves; Looking for seashells on Manhattan and watching the Parent Trap as a family. The same picture is taken by Haystack Rock every year accompanied by a breakfast at The Wayfarer.
A lot of traditions have been added to the list, like the annual shopping at wheeler's Antique store and the morning stops at Bread and Ocean bakery for a cup of Sleepy Monk Coffee.
Of course, each year, after finishing off those last scoops of homemade ice-cream and eating those remaining dark chocolates; after many stops at Coffee and Donuts for their ice-cream cones and milkshakes, or enjoying bottles of specialty ginger-ales, we always leave with the resolution to go home and start some major dieting (it never lasts very long ;)

God truly blessed our time this year at the beach and gave our family an extra special year. 
It's at special moments like these when we're on the beach, carrying out our family traditions that I wish I could capture the moments and hold onto them forever so that I could relive them whenever I miss them. I know that it won't be like this for much longer! But we value each moment that God gives us together.

I will be trying to post again here very soon with the answers to a questionnaire...I got tagged by Sarah :)

        (The slideshow is better if watched in full screen :)