A Needed Dose of Vitamin Sea

The problem with every story is that you tell it after the fact ~ Chuck Palahniuk

I got a little behind on posting, hope you enjoy our coastal trip in Southern Oregon.

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Nothing better than a little Pacific Coast sea-habilitation

If you’re traveling the Southern Oregon coast, you must explore the 12-mile section of the Samuel Boardman State Scenic Corridor. From Brookings to Gold Beach, there are rocky shorelines, natural bridges, and dramatic scenery.

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I hope you always have a shell in your pocket and sand in your shoes ~ Unknown

We decided to stop and beachcomb at the beautiful Miller Creek Beach. This little one is definitely a toes-in-the-sand kind of girl ~ I think she may also have saltwater in her veins.

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Smell the sea and feel the sky, let your soul and spirit fly ~ Van Morrison

Why waste hours on the internet, playing video games, or watching YouTube when adventure and exploration awaits on a barely touched coastline. This is how kids should spend their time (and Grandma’s, too).

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Not all treasure is silver and gold ~ Unknown

The kids spotted crab bodies and pieces of sand dollars as we walked the length of the shore.  It is a blessing to be able to share these times with my grandchildren ~ I hope they always remember our travels together.

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One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure ~ William Feather

The viewpoint to the Natural Bridge is a 30-second walk from the parking area. A steep trail leads down to the arch. The kids wanted to try it, but we turned around after the grandson (in flip-flops) nearly slipped off the side. The trail is narrow and steep. Photo tip: opt for the morning to avoid the sun in your lens.

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B.E.A.C.H = Best escape anyone can have ~ Unknown

Our last stop for the day, the rocky and beautiful Harris Beach. Sadly, there was a water advisory in effect due to a bacteria spill. That didn’t stop some families from allowing their children to play in the water. Gross. It’s human waste people.

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I “whale” always love the time we spent together ~ Grandma Sandra

The spill didn’t stop us from having fun and enjoy our last dose of vitamin sea. With rock formations galore, we spent our time scrambling, climbing, faux whale watching and being in awe of Mother Nature.

Next, the end of the trip. Join me for a morning hike on the Oregon Redwood Trail and breakfast with the family at the famous, Samoa Cookhouse in Eureka, California.

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Finding a Better Connection

There is no WiFi in the forest, but I promise you will find a better connection ~ Anonymous

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Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints, kill nothing but time ~ Unknown

Our next stop was a cabin at Loeb State Park, located 8-miles outside the seaside town of Brookings, Oregon. This one-room cutie came with lights, electricity, heat, and rustic furniture. And the best part? All cabins sit above the Chetco River, which is a minute walk from the porch.

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Think outside, no box required

The lazy, Chetco River is perfect for playing in and is easily accessible from anywhere in the campground.  We spotted kayaks, tubers, swimmers, and fishermen, all enjoying their time outdoors.

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In order to see birds, it is necessary to become part of the silence ~ Robert Lynd

Egrets, blue herons, and cormorants……oh my! With the coast being nearby, we were visited daily by a variety of seabirds.

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Wander often, wander always ~ unknown

No TV, no internet, just good old-fashioned exploring. What did we do when we got bored? Who could get listless exploring an untamed river, a redwood trail, or the rocky coast of Oregon. Not me, nor my grandkids.

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Every journey begins with a single hop ~ Kermit the Frog

While my granddaughter spotted frogs in the river, our cabin-neighbor caught a Newt and let the kids hold it. We had the nicest neighbors in both campgrounds. Folks were so friendly, taking the time to say “hi” and converse. Reminded me so much of camping as a kid, when folks were friendly and not so disconnected.

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You can’t be unhappy in the middle of a big, beautiful river ~ Jim Harrison

For me, the temperatures were wonderful and I enjoyed being away from the desert heat. Eighty degrees during the day and fifties at night. Mornings were cool with coastal fog, burning off and becoming warm enough for a dip in the river by the afernoon.

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Take a walk in the forest and smell the wild air ~ unknown

 I am thoroughly enjoying my time in the cooler, Pacific Northwest, especially time spent exploring and connecting with my grandchildren.

Next up, we do some day-tripping up the Oregon Coast, stopping at Miller Creek State Park, a natural bridge, and Harris Beach for some beach-combing.  Stay tuned!

 

The Sweet, Simple Things of Life

It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

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She may have a wild soul, but she’s a lover of simple things and quiet places ~ Ehixojie

After picking up the granddaughter, we began our trip at the Valley of the Rogue State Campground, in Gold Hill, Oregon. The wild, Rogue River runs alongside the campground, along with thorny bushes of blackberries ready for picking!

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That man is the richest whose pleasures are the cheapest ~ Thoreau

Instead of a tent, we chose to stay in a yurt. The yurt is furnished, has lights and electricity, and costs just a little more than the tent site. Bathrooms and showers were just a few feet away. It was fun and I’d definitely stay in one again!

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Delight in simple things, and mirth that has no bitter springs ~ Rudyard Kipling

It was blackberry season and with Southern Oregon burning and smokey, we spent the day at the campground, wandering along the Rogue picking berries. The kids wasted away the afternoon running from thorny bush to bush trying to find the sweetest fruit.

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Sometimes, the simple things are more fun and meaningful than all the banquets in the world ~ E A Buchianeri

We also came upon a wild plum-tree and added these delicious, purple treats to our days bounty. Guess what’s for dessert tonight?

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There is beauty in simplicity……..

The camp ranger mentioned that folks could live off the land in this area. Although they were not ready yet, our third edible find for the day was wild grapes…..and when the season is right, if you bring a fishing pole you can catch salmon or trout.

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It’s the little things in life………

We didn’t do as much exploring of the area as we normally do, but I hope my grandchildren will always remember the little things we did do: berry picking, river splashing and spending a few nights playing board games in a funny tent-like structure called a Yurt!

What if You Fly?

There is freedom waiting for you on the breezes of the sky, and you ask, “What if I fall?” ~ Oh, but my darling, what if you fly? ~ Erin Hansen

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If the path be beautiful, let us not ask where it leads ~ Anatole France

Last week we were fortunate enough to spend time tent camping on the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Although the North Rim is not as popular (due to logistics), I found it just as beautiful (or maybe even a little more so) than the South-side.

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Can you imagine sitting here, sipping your coffee, watching the sunrise (or set) over the canyon?

The Transept Trail is a three-mile, round trip, hike that follows the rim to the Grand Canyon Lodge.  It is about a five-minute walk from our campground, unless you’re camped in the tent only or hiker spots. These premium spots border the rim.

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I love views that make me realize most of my problems aren’t that big of a deal ~ A. Gucciardi

The trail alternated from canyon edge to shady woodlands, filled with ponderosa pines and quaking aspens.  The trail offered many tree-framed niches, peek-a-boos, and open cliff areas allowing walking access to the rim.

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A change of scenery can help everything ~ Drew Pomeranz

After reaching the lodge, if you continue another .5 miles, you’ll be treated to a spectacular view of the canyon at Bright Angel Point.  If you squint really hard, you might see the North Kaibab trail (not in the photo) from the point. The North Kaibab trail takes you down to the canyon floor ~ something I hope to do one day.

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Imagine, serenely rocking on the front porch and enjoying the view

If tent camping is not for you, cabins and rooms are available at the Grand Canyon Lodge, North Rim. I will have to admit, as an older person, tent camping at 8000 ft. plus, is a little difficult.  I was quite envious of the cabin lodgers, especially those who faced the canyon rim.

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Kaibab Squirrel

I was happy to run into this little fellow before we left. The Kaibab squirrel is only found in the forests of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and Kaibab National Forest. No where else in the world.

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Vermilion Cliffs

Heading home, we passed by the beautiful Vermilion Cliffs. Unfortunately, we had to admire them from a distance, but this orange-red national monument is on my bucket list for further exploration. I would love to hike “the wave” one day.

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The poetry of earth is never dead ~ John Keats

Just had to stop and appreciate this gorgeous view from the Navajo Bridge of the Colorado River flowing through Marble Canyon. When I think of the South West, scenery such as this comes to mind.

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Not all those who wander are lost ~ Tolkien

Although this trip has ended, we happy wanderers have one more to go before bringing the grandson home. Thankfully, lodging on our next journey includes a yurt and cabin (woo-hoo, no tent!) and we will be joined by another grandchild.

Stay tuned for our Oregon trip. Hope you enjoyed!

Early Morning Blessing

An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day ~ Henry David Thoreau

Well I did it. I’d been mulling over it for a month or two, ever since the coolness left and the heat crept in. As much as I try, it’s hard getting up and out of the house before the sun rises. It’s even harder managing a two-mile walk around the park while the monsoon-induced humidity zaps your energy.

So I did it. The I’m-not-interested-in-a-gym-lady got herself a no-frills membership at the purple-colored house of exercise with the intention of maintaining my walking regimen. No matter how late I rise or how sweltering the temps outside, I can walk in coolness.

Well, after day two, the bottom line is……I don’t like it, not one little bit. Thirty minutes on a treadmill, staring at a line of TV screens felt like forever to this outdoor lady. It was the longest thirty minutes of my life.

I miss the trees, the grass, the blue skies, and saying good morning to all those passersby. I miss the smell of freshly watered lawn, (and getting doused by the sprinklers) and listening to the songs of the desert birds in the trees overhead.

I’m sure glad I chose the non-committal sign-up package. Although, I appreciate the air conditioning and shade, I’m an open-air, nature-loving walker and…..I need my early morning blessing. 

To quote Daphne Oz ~ “Exercise is important,  but exercise in a gym is not important. Go take a walk outside. Skip the umpteenth coffee date and go for a hike instead……”

Heat or no heat, humidity or not ~ I agree and I think I will. That’s what alarm clocks are for, right?

Returning to a Cooler Place

There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered ~ Nelson Mandela

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Let him be little, let him be wild ~ let him be a little wild………Anonymous

There’s only so much a rambunctious five-year old can do cooped up in the house due to hot temperatures in the teens. So Grandma did the next best thing….planned an overnight-er to the oh-so-much-cooler Hualapai Mountains above Kingman.

 

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Trail selfie!

After settling into the cabin and devouring some Grandma-style chili cheese dogs, we set off for a little exploring and hiking before dusk. Who needs video games and television when you can play in the forest and use your imagination to be whomever you please.

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Happiness is….having a big brother who takes care of you….

 

Some one is excited about spotting his fourth elk of the day. I’m so grateful to be able to share my love of nature with my grandchildren and take them out hiking into the woods. It may have only been for one day, but I know the memories will last forever.

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California Here I Come!

I’m not playing anymore, I am going home ~ Anonymous

I am back in California for a few days and I am LOVING it! The temperature here is a refreshing 67 degrees this morning. There are restaurants and stores aplenty,  family to meet up with, and graduations and birthdays to celebrate.

When the temps at home reach 110, I start to ask myself what the heck was I thinking moving to Arizona. But it doesn’t take long for the California crowds, traffic, noise, and pollution to remind me why I left.

So for now, while I am here in the southern half of the Golden State, I will enjoy, enjoy, enjoy! Before I return home, I think a morning walk at my favorite park  and a trip to the ocean to dip my toes is in order. It is good to be home.

California, here I come – Right back where I started from
Where bowers are flowers bloom in the spring  – Each morning at dawning
Birdies sing and everything
A sun-kissed miss said “Don’t be late!”  – That’s why I can hardly wait,
Open up that Golden Gate! – California, here I come!