Monday, July 13, 2009


Alex, Isaac, and I just returned from a week of travels, first to our old home, Silverdale, then to visit Granny and Dad in Ocean Park. We left early last Monday and hadn’t driven an hour before I realized all the things I had forgotten: Alex’s favorite stuffed animal, Amber, his Bluey (blue fuzzy blanket) and his toilet seat. Oops. Alex made it to our lunch stop before he mentioned Amber, and then cried and cried missing her. “But I’ll be too lonely!” he sobbed . He was finally satisfied with the thought of her keeping daddy company while we were gone, and distracted by a new happy meal toy. He didn’t mention her again, and made it happily through the rest of the trip without Bluey, I guess I missed them more than him. Sad to think about him beginning to put his baby blanket behind him. I’m not ready for that.

One thing I did remember correctly was how great our friends are in Silverdale. We invaded Zach and Leah’s new house for the night. Alex and Jack were immediately great friends, holding hands and sharing, and laughing. Matt and Bethany came over for dinner, so we were able to see them, too. We had twice as many children as we did last time we were together, and it was interesting to see them all together. My kids managed to make the largest messes of the group, in both the baby and preschool divisions. I went to help Alex in the bathroom and came back to where I had left Isaac, safely contained in his high chair, to find all the adults scrambling to clean sweet potato puree off of every surface in sight: the back of the couch, the carpet, the tile floor, every angle of the table and chairs. Isaac has longer arms than I thought and had pulled his entire baby food container down off the table to splatter on the floor. What a mess! Poor Leah! Sweet potatoes all over her new house. Alex didn’t want Isaac to get all the glory, I guess, so just as we were getting ready to eat lunch, I looked out the sliding door to see Alex standing in a puddle on the top step of Leah’s concrete patio. He hadn’t quite made it to the bathroom. At least he was outside. The puddle wasn’t too bad, but then the toddlers noticed it, and of course kids love to play in puddles. Yuck!

I drove by our old house, the cute little white farm house with a red door and an acre of grass. I’d been really regretting selling it lately, wishing we could turn back the clock, skip these years of restlessness, and just stay there. I think it was good to see it and bring it back to reality. Good to see how big and unkempt the yard really was, and good to see the changes to the neighborhood that we didn’t have to live with since we moved. I think it made me realize that we really can’t ever go back, although I probably still would buy it again if I could.

After a great visit, we started on the road again, to Ocean Park. I love the ocean. I love the smell of the air, and the overgrowth of ferns and rhododendrons. I love how the evergreens surround the road, and make every turn an adventure. (I know, five years ago I was complaining about that, but I guess it grew on me.) I love the bridges and the cranberry bogs. But most of all, I love being at Granny’s house. I love the cookie jar that’s always full of cookies, and using a different set of dishes for every meal. I love coffee and a newspaper in the morning in the sun porch with a perfect view of the hummingbirds. In Ocean Park it’s easy to forget that the rest of the world exists.
Isaac examining the sand.

We had a great visit, including a stop at the kite museum and another museum in Ilwaco with trains. It was free admission day, but dad spent a fortune in quarters to make the model trains run for Alex, while he ran squealing with delight after them, getting into the right position to watch as they came over a bridge or through a tunnel.
We walked on the beach to the whale bones that dad had never seen, and to the clamming docks that I’d never visited. We even took the canoe out on the bay and managed to make it home without Granny calling the coast guard to rescue us.
Our week was over all too soon. We headed out yesterday morning, and came the familiar route up the coastal highway and then over to Olympia and through Tacoma. We were just getting into the busy Tacoma traffic when Alex decided he needed to use a bathroom. I pulled over at the familiar Bridgeport way exit we had been to so many times visiting Dani when she was stationed in Tacoma. We stopped at a KFC for a break and headed on our way. It wasn’t until we were half way home, over Snoqualmie pass, in Ellensburg when we stopped for lunch and I realized I didn’t have my purse. Ugh. We tracked it down, back at the KFC, and they agreed to mail it to me. So, that left me with the problem that I was still so far from home with just over three dollars in change to get me home. We skipped lunch (thank you Granny for sending so many cookies with us, they made a great lunch!) and drove back with no air conditioning despite the 90 degree temperature, doing all I could to conserve gas. We made it all the way to Colfax, 15 miles from home, before I stopped and Jeremy came to rescue us. What an adventure!
baby growth