Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing—Benjamin Franklin


Being a turtle is not so bad

I sit here listening to my little man attempt to take a nap (which comes with sounds somewhere between Tarzan and Xena Warrior Princess) and it occurs to me just how much life has changed since we left Utah. Driving back here was a bit of a whirlwind and I didn't have time to notice much of anything, but as we've been in Utah longer, I'm realizing how much has changed. Not only in Utah itself, but in me. Hang tight, I'm going to wax sentimental.
There are the usual things I find when I haven't been home for a while: the neighborhood changes, having trouble finding my way around because of all the new building/freeway expansions, etc. And having been out East for a while there are new things to notice: the different color of the trees here, just how big the mountains are, the dry air that makes it hard to breathe if you move too fast and makes you realize the vital importance of lotion.... But the biggest thing I've noticed since I've been here is how I look at all of it. I love Utah--who can help it when you are surrounded by such beautiful mountains and fabulous people?--but I'm a visitor now. Which leaves me asking, when did it stop being home to me? I mean, it will still always feel a little like home because it holds so many memories, family, and friends, but now home is a different feeling all together. Home is waking up to little yells of "knock, knock mama" from the other room, and the pitter patter of little feet and growls as he comes to "surprise" attack your knee caps, and listening for silence because that means he is up to something he shouldn't be. Home is knowing my husband will be back at the end of the day with a kiss and a rescue attempt from the insanity that is life, or a silly song when I'm feeling not-so-hot, or staying up until all hours of the night talking and laughing about who knows what. Home isn't attached to a place anymore for me. Home is what I carry with me everywhere I go. When did I get so lucky? Maybe it's because we've turned into nomadic turtles who can load our entire house on our back at a moments notice and make do if the need arises, or maybe it's because my priorities have completely changed, or maybe I just don't have enough brain capacity to focus on both people and a place being home anymore. Whatever it is, I'm grateful for my little home and my little men who fill it up with love.

Portland of the Free

We ended up taking a trip up to visit my sister for the 4th of July and had a blast. Other than Little having a rough time both to and from (apparently we're prone to carsickness in motorhomes), there was plenty of fun to be had by all. Here is the highlight reel:

 The Tilamook Cheese Factory. A fabulous place full of the best tasting ice cream, cheese, and chocolate milk on earth. And who doesn't love a giant plastic cow?

The kids spent plenty of time cooling off with the slip-n-slide and Little loved every second of it. He parked himself right where the splashing was the most intense and didn't stop laughing until I pulled him kicking and screaming from the beloved pool because he was about frozen.
 Lauri, being master of ceremonies for the 4th of July, made sure we all had appropriately patriotic painted nails and she may just be the record holder for getting Connelly to hold still for the longest. It's amazing what you'll do for sparkly blue nails. 
 Cannon beach. Beautiful. Cold. Worth it. 
Fun with fireworks and marshmallows and family. Between lighting off fireworks and having semi-all night bonfires, the fire pit was well used. 
And last but not least, Little taking after his father (Bryce used to carry around a "sword and banger" when he was little) and attacking anyone who would allow it, which mostly meant Jonathan because he was such a good sport the whole time and is the best cousin anyone could ask for. 
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