Good grief! It’s February already. How the heck did that happen? I don’t know if anyone other than my Mom is still checking this blog but hopefully there are still a few hopeful souls out there.
I know I’ve been terrible about updating the blog since we got back up to Oregon. Actually, I guess the last real entry was just before we went to Buck Owen’s Crystal Palace in Bakersfield. Shame on me. Bad blogger! Not sure what my problem was. Seemed to have plenty of time to binge-watch season 4 of Downton Abbey but not enough time to update the blog occasionally. But, now that we’re back on the road, I’m hoping to get better. We’re actually staying an extra day here in Bandon, Oregon, mostly so I’ll have a chance to get caught up.
OK, hopefully without getting too long-winded, here’s an update on what’s been happening since December 13, 2013.
We did visit the aforementioned Crystal Palace for their “famous” Sunday brunch.
The brunch was good in that we got to have all the various gringo breakfast items that we’d been missing all in one breakfast. The downside was that, to really get our money’s worth, we would have had to partake of the “complimentary” mimosas or champagne. We passed as there was a fair piece of driving ahead of us that day. Also, to really do good, we would need much larger appetites so we could get our money’s worth in the “all-you-can-eat” arena. But, nevertheless, it was pretty enjoyable. And I don’t even like Buck Owens. Always figured Hee-Haw would have been just fine without him. And when he started pandering to the right wing by uglifying perfectly nice guitars, well that was pretty much it. But, we were in Bakersfield and, since there wasn’t much else to see or do, Buck’s place was pretty much the place to go.
Besides, who could pass up an opportunity to feast their eyes on this beauty?
From Bakersfield, we headed sort of towards the coast and drove up through the wine country of Napa and St. Helena. Beautiful drive and very little traffic. We spent the night just south of Willits. This was the coldest night of the trip so far. We woke to frost on everything and, when we went into town for breakfast, our tires crunched through the ice-covered puddles in the parking lot. Time to don the long johns.
We made one more stop along the coast (Bandon, Oregon) before making our first major landfall in Eugene. We visited my folks, my sister and her family and our son and daughter-in-law and, most importantly, our grandson, Neil.
The next day we finished the run up to our daughter’s home (our old house), which is where we spent the majority of our time while in Oregon.
We spent our time commiserating with Cody, who was in the final two weeks or so (turned out to be closer to three weeks) of her first pregnancy, watching various TV shows we’d bought, doing a little bit of Christmas shopping, doing some chores around the old homestead, and trying to keep warm. We spent Christmas in Eugene and New Year’s Eve in Silverton. In spite of our complaining about how cold it was, we could not have asked for a better winter to return to the Pacific Northwest. Except for a fairly cold first week (for you Bumfuzzle fans, our stay was nothing in comparison to what they’re dealing with in Minnesota), and a little bit of rain, we mostly had pretty mild temperatures and very little rain (much to Oregon’s chagrin). And, as a bonus, throughout much of January we were experiencing a temperature inversion. This usually is not a good thing since the valleys are filled with cold, grey fog that never seems to lift and the smoke from the woodstoves gets trapped down low. However, Cody & Scott’s place is not in the valley. Rather, at 2000′ we experienced day after day of sunshine and blue skies and very mild temperatures. Made it kind of a drag to have to go down into the valley for doctor’s appointments and such but it sure was nice to break out of the fog into bright sunshine on the trip home.
Cody’s baby was due on January 7th. She didn’t finally arrive until January 13th. Little Wyatt Rosemary’s birth was not easy on either Mama or Baby but she got here nevertheless, healthy if not particularly happy.
She did cheer up a bit as time went on but she still has a healthy temper which she shows when things aren’t quite meeting her expectations.
As Lulu said when Cody, Scott and Wyatt came home from the hospital, “There’s a new boss in the house.”
During the time we were at Cody and Scott’s, we managed to get a few of our own projects completed. I finally connected Flipper’s solar panels to the camper’s charging system and reconfigured some of the interior storage for better efficiency. Lulu re-did our bunk with sleeping bags and an insertable sheet liner to replace the conventional setup we had been using. Nothing like trying to make a bed which is flush to the walls on 3 sides, while you’re kneeling on the bed. The sleeping bag setup is much more user-friendly. We enjoyed visiting our old home. Who wouldn’t when you can look out the window and see this:
However, when we woke up on January 31st and looked out and saw this, we knew it was time to leave:
In the interest of full disclosure, the weather started to improve shortly after this photo was taken. But still, the timing was perfect.
We spent our first night on the road in Eugene. That’s right, we traveled a whole 70 miles! Had dinner with Lucas, Julia and Neil and then had breakfast yesterday with my sister and her husband (Beverly & Nick). Then we hit the road again with our goal being Bandon on the southern Oregon coast. We doubled our first day’s mileage. Bandon is a whopping 140 miles from Eugene. The trip wore us out so much we decided to stay an extra day. Actually, we’re staying for two reasons. One is that the RV park we’re in (Bandon RV Park – how’s that for a clever name?) is an easy walk away from downtown. The weather is gorgeous and so, we want to take advantage of being here by walking around and poking our noses into a few stores, maybe stop for a bowl of chowder and, who knows, maybe even a brew or two. The second reason was to get this blog written. When we’re on the road, I tend to fall behind a bit. Once we arrive at a campsite, I seldom feel like sitting down at the keyboard (assuming we have wifi) and, the next morning we generally have breakfast and then hit the road. It’s even worse if I fall behind and have that much more that I think I have to write. On this trip, I’m going to try to get in the habit of writing about the day before during my first cup of coffee in the morning, between the time that I roll out of bed and the time that Lulu does. We’ll see how it goes.
OK, that’s it. Let me just leave you with some random shots of our grandchildren. The bigger one is Neil, our grandson, and the tinier one is Wyatt, our granddaughter. They are exactly 5 months apart in age.