Saturday, February 28, 2015

East Fork Trail and Cougar Reservoir

M took us up to Cougar Reservoir for a long hike today. We hiked on East Fork Trail #3308 for 5.5 miles. We then hiked down a road for 6.4 miles for a total of almost 12 miles. It was exhausting but we made it!

 Log bridge crossing East Fork McKenzie River.

 Love the rushing water over these mossy rocks.

 One of the reasons I love Oregon, all the green.

 Walking down the road headed to the car.
 Cougar Reservoir

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Lover's Hiking Getaway

For Valentine Day weekend, M rented a cabin out by Dorena for a couples getaway while the girls were at Bahmah's house. It was in the country and had no internet/cell service but it was so peaceful and relaxing. It was a one room cabin with a loft and a bathroom. There was a wood-burning stove for heat which we enjoyed sitting by each night.

We arrived late Friday evening after dropping the girls off at Bahmah's; so after unpacking and eating we played a few rounds of dominos before heading to bed. At around midnight we were both ripped out of a sound sleep by a horribly loud screeching sound that wouldn't stop. We quickly figured out it was the smoke detector which was on the ceiling 16 feet above our heads. M tried standing on the chair and reaching the reset button with a broom handle but he was a couple feet too short. He went outside to look for a ladder and found a short one that he climbed on to reset the smoke detector with the broom handle. We went back to sleep and were awoken again a 2am with the same noise. This happened again at 4am. Needless to say we didn't have a well-rested night. M made us a tasty breakfast before we headed out for our first hike of the weekend.
Spirit Falls
 Cutting cross country.
We hiked cross country to get to the top of Spirit Falls. Hiking off trail is very hard and exhausting but we were able to do it. I didn't want to get too close to the edge since I have a fear of heights so M took this picture. It was really high up.
We continued on our hike to Moon Falls. It was another tall fall with water cascading down 120 feet of basalt steps. We were able to hike up close and get some pictures right next to the fall.

Ah, young(ish) love.
 Same fall from further down the creek.
We saw this heart in the tree and thought it very fitting.
We left Moon Falls and headed to Pinard Falls, our last stop of the day. This was a tall but narrow fall. Our whole hike was only 3 miles but it was very leisurely. M spent a lot of time at each fall taking pictures. He is getting quite good with his nature photos.
After our hike we went home and M cooked us steak and shrimp for dinner. We snuggled on the couch and watched a movie before roasting a couple marshmallows and heading to bed. We were awoken again around midnight with the smoke detector going off. Luckily it only went off twice that night.
In the morning M made us oatmeal for breakfast and we headed out for another fun day of hikes.
The first one we went to was Upper Trestle Creek Falls. It was a long uphill hike but well worth it when we got to the fall.
 Upper Trestle Creek Falls.

 Can you see me crouching in the back?
Behind the fall.
 This is an old wagon road they converted to trail. 
It was really pretty to walk down. You could almost imagine
wagons of long ago traveling to get supplies.
 This is Face Falls which M and I don't deem an actual fall.
It is was too short but has a pretty nice swimming hole.
 Swimming hole; there is even a little beach to the right of this pic.
 Love this pic M took of the treetops.
Lower Trestle Creek Falls. There was a lot of debris here which made it difficult to get near but M always finds a way to get his photo.

We came upon a mudslide and fallen trees covering the trail. It was at the last quarter mile of a 4 mile hike so we didn't want to turn back. M carefully climbed over and then helped me. The dirt kept sliding down the hill and I had to grab onto the fallen tree's branches to pull myself over. I felt like any moment the tree would slide over the edge of the cliff. It was so scary, but we made it! There were other hikers who came up to this and went back the direction they came.
We continued on to Upper and Lower Parker Falls, stopping to see Zolotoy falls from the road along the way.
 Zolotoy Falls.
Brice Creek.
Upper Parker Falls.
Lower Parker Falls.
Noonday Evergreen Falls.
 Blue Pool Falls.
After a full day of hiking we headed back to the cabin for a candlit dinner. M made us more steak, bacon wrapped shrimp, broccoli, peppers and a salad.

After dinner we played a game of scrabble then made a fire. We decided to go for a walk to enjoy the beautiful starlit sky.

It was really cold so M made me some hot chocolate when we got back and we snuggled by the fire. At 2am, NOTHING HAPPENED! We actually enjoyed a peaceful nights sleep with no annoying fire alarm going off.
This is the old cabin that people used to stay in. It looks quite archaic compared to where we stayed. I would totally recommend staying in this cabin (not the one above but the one at the top of this post) if you want to get away from it all. We really enjoyed the peace and quiet of nature out here. I could definitely see us living in something like this when the girls are older and moved out on their own.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Turning 7...Only Four Years from 11

L turned 7 today, I can hardly believe it. We decorated her door with streamers and balloons that she ran through when she awoke. We also decorated the living room and kitchen.

I made pancakes that said I Heart U and the number 7 for her age along with eggs for her breakfast. She thought it was really cool.
For dinner she had macaroni and cheese, fish sticks, bbq chicken, broccoli and cucumber slices. She wanted donuts for her dessert.

After dessert, she opened her presents from us, her grandmas and her auntie. She got quite a haul but her favorite item was the ninja outfit her sister bought for her.

Since her birthday was in the middle of the week we waited until the weekend to have some friends over for a movie night with pizza, popcorn, and cupcakes. We watched Big Hero 6. Her friends brought her a HUGE present! It was a Green Machine and she loves it!

The boy next to L is our future son-in-law.

L is now 4'8" tall and is an amazingly bright and active child. She loves to read and is in the accelerated reading group in her class. Her favorite books right now are the Magic Rainbow Fairy series. It's a good thing there are so many different sets because she can go through a seven book series in two days. She also enjoys reading Ivy and Bean, Fairy Realm and Dragon Masters. She is still taking speech at school twice a week for 15 minutes. She only needs it because she talks so fast. Once we get her to self regulate her rate of speech she will be done with speech.
She has tons of energy and loves to do anything outside. She is still taking Taekwondo and really likes it. She loves swimming and wants to take gymnastics as well. She spends a lot of time outside riding bikes or jumping on the trampoline. At school she likes to play basketball at recess.
L is very stubborn and hasn't been listening or following instructions at home lately. When she is asked to put her dirty clothes in the hamper, she takes them to the hamper and drops them on the floor beside it. When we ask her to clean her room, she shoves everything under her bed and into drawers instead of putting things away. She is fighting for her independence right now but doing it in the wrong ways. Unfortunately sometimes us making her conform to our rules causes her to have a mental breakdown. She will cry and scream and cannot be consoled or talked down. She must be left alone until she can relax and let it all go. At that point we are usually able to talk to her and get her to comply with our "demands". I hope one day she will use these tools for good:)