On Thursday March 8th, Tyler and I left our cluttered, packed up apartment to head on another trip. This time we’re headed to Seaside Oregon. That’s about a 12 hour drive away from home. So we started our long road trip after we got off of work Thursday. We left around 4:30 pm and stopped to pick up Tyler’s brother Jordan. The rest of Tyler’s family had left about an hour ago, but since Tyler and I worked, we left later.
We planned on stopping in Ontario Oregon to stay the night. We arrived at our hotel at around 10:30 pm. It was a late night and our bed in the hotel was super super comfy. So Tyler and I slept really well.
Friday morning we got up, had breakfast and hit the road. Again. This half of the drive seemed to take longer than the first half. Finally we got to Salem where we stopped to visit Tyler’s dad and his other brothers. However we had some time to kill, so we visited Tyler’s old house, and checked out a really cute coffee shop called Ike Box. I really liked the vibe of the shop and the drink I got was yummy.
Then we made our way to Tyler’s dad’s house. We stopped by for dinner and just to relax. They even celebrated Tyler’s birthday since they didn’t get to see him. Once we finished our cake we were back on the road for the last little bit of our trip. This drive was just two hours and wasn’t bad.
We arrived at the condo at Seaside around 10 pm. And man this place was niiice. I have never stayed in one of these condos, but Tyler has multiple times. I was so impressed at how nice our room was, we even had a fireplace, a full kitchen with fully stocked cabinets, and a bbq. The only crappy thing was the bed. The only bed we had in our room was a murphy bed and it was so so so uncomfortable. I didn’t sleep very well the whole time we stayed there. But I was still super impressed by the condo and was really excited that I could see the beach from our patio.
Saturday was our first day of just relaxing. We had a late breakfast and then headed out to visit the Tillamook cheese factory. While we were there the factory tour was closed down due to some remodeling they were doing. So I didn’t get to see the cheese getting made, but I did get to taste it. Let me tell you, I am not a plain cheese type of person, I really don’t like eating cheese unless it’s on/in something else. Well these cubes of cheese I tasted were so good! I really loved the blackpepper one, so much so that we bought some to take home with us. Then we moved onto the ice cream which was even better! I got a scoop of sea salt honeycomb toffee. It was amazing.
After Tillamook, Tyler’s mom suggested going to another cheese factory. We drove down the road to a place called Blue Heron. This shop was really cozy and had lots of tastings. French cheese, dips, mustards, and wine. Everything was so tasty. While there I got to do some wine tasting! It was really good and I enjoyed the experience of tasting lots of different kinds. I loved this dessert wine and even bought a bottle!
After our cheese tastings we headed back to the beach, surprise surprise Tyler and I took a nap. After we got up we headed down for an evening on the beach. I was so excited. The sandy part of the beach was huge and went on and on. The water was so pretty and there were cliffs surrounding one side of the coast. When I got close enough to get my toes in I about squealed. The water was so very cold. But because I love water so much, I pushed through the cold. Once my toes went numb, it was so much more enjoyable.
After splashing around, we settled in to make a fire. It was so cool. I’ve never had a fire on the beach before and I loved it. It was so relaxing and just beautiful. We roasted hot dogs over the fire and just relaxed. Once the sun set it got really cold so we headed back to the condo to watch tv and fall asleep.
The next day was spent on the boardwalk. It’s really just this street of little shops that lead up to beach front. They were cute shops, but Tyler and I didn’t find anything we wanted to buy. Well that is except for our shot glass. (If you don’t know, Tyler and I collect a shot glass from everywhere we visit) However his family really enjoyed the shops so we stayed for a good part of the day.
Tyler and I stopped for lunch at a local bar and grill place. We ordered fish and chips that were pretty good. After lunch we headed back to the condo to relax for a little.
We ate some hamburgers for dinner that night that were really good. After dinner we headed back down to the beach. I really wish I lived by a beach.
That night we were pretty tired and decided to head to bed pretty early.
The next morning was our checkout date. We left the condo around 8 am to go get some breakfast. Then we were back on the road headed to Vancouver Washington which is where Tyler’s great grandma lives.
After a 3 hour drive we arrived at the JC Penny’s in the mall to take some family portraits with grandma. I mean you only turn 100 once right? After the fiasco of posing and getting so many people to cooperate, we headed back to grandma’s nursing home. We ordered some pizza for lunch and played some card games.
Several hours later we gathered in the rec room and got out the cake. We sang to her and laughed at her silly faces. She’s still got some great personality and attitude for being so old.
Once the party was over Tyler, Jordan, and I hit the road. We drove through the night, stopping a couple times to get some naps in. We arrived home at 7:30 am on Tuesday morning.
The trip was so much fun, and I am totally in love with Oregon. Between the endless trees, stormy skies, and gorgeous coast, what’s not to love?
Be sure to check out my vlog of our trip too! Thanks for reading!
Boo Lights at Hogle Zoo was fantastic!
When I heard about boo lights I thought it was a cute and fun date idea. I was excited to go, but in the back of my mind I was skeptical on how fun and neat it would be. I’ve gone to similar events and not enjoyed them as much as expected.
Tyler, Amanda (my cousin), and I all went together. It was quite chilly! But we stopped beforehand for hot coffee to help keep us warm.
Walking in it looked more like the zoo was lit up for Christmas. The trees were covered in multicolored lights and there was a large Christmas tree in the center of the plaza. I even commented to Amanda that it looked like Temple Square. But as we walked into the zoo further we saw more light displays and the magic appeared.
It was awesome to walk around the zoo, we even got to see the animals. They were so much more active than when Tyler and I came in the summer. (Read about that here)
I was really impressed with the lights and we even found a Weeping Angel. Yes I did totally geek out!
It was a really amazing night and I will totally be coming back next year!
P.S. check out these awesome singing pumpkins!!
If you want to go, check out the dates below!
Tyler and I went to go see the witches at Gardner Village (a very popular shopping district that often does fun community activities) for a fun fall activity. Tyler has never been to see them and I had the day off so we went!
I was really excited to get out and do our first real fall activity. Before we arrived at Gardner Village we stopped at got coffee at High Point Coffee. I love love love their coffee so it was a great treat.
All warmed up, we arrived. I was really enjoying the atmosphere and really getting into finding the witches. Basically I was really getting into the childlike spirit, but Tyler thought the witches were kinda silly.
I think this fall activity would be more enjoyable in the evening rather than during the day, but I hope to make it a tradition. I also think we will enjoy it more once we have children, but I am determined to go back next year or maybe even again this year.
I love the outdoors and I absolutely adore going on hikes. Luckily for me Utah is a beautiful place and has tons of amazing hikes. Here are some of my favorite Utah Hikes
This is a pretty hike located in Utah county. There’s a nice paved trail all the way to the top of the mountain, and it can get steep. While the trail is beautiful and the views of the valley from the top are amazing, the reason this hike made the list was for the cave found at the top.
After your hike up the mountain you can take a tour through the caves. These underground tours do need to be paid for at the bottom before you hike up, but it’s totally worth the ticket price. The system of caves are longer than you would imagine and contain amazing views of lakes, rivers, stalagmites and stalactites. The views inside are breathtaking.
My family goes every year over labor day weekend. The caves are constantly changing and growing so this tour is one you can do over and over again!
A family friendly, mostly flat trail that leads to an amazing waterfall. The waterfall flows through the middle of an opening in the rocks, getting the name donut falls. I’ve only visited here once, but the water feature at the end makes the hike worth the effort.
The trail that leads to suicide rock is mostly used to get to the shoot the tube access point. So the first part of this hike is busier than the end. Once you pass the tube entrance, you have to keep going into the woodsy area. The trail here is not paved and can be hard to follow.
Suicide Rock is a large rock that sits between freeways and is covered in graffiti. Totally picturesque and fun to see how high you dare to climb.
Check out my hiking adventure of it here.
The hikes listed above are located around the Salt Lake Valley, but I can’t skip mentioning Zion National Park.
I visited Zion for the first time about a year ago and have already been back once. This park is seriously some of the most beautiful Utah landscape I’ve seen. This park needs 3 days to truly be appreciated.
Some of my favorite hikes from there are:
This hike is easily one of the most popular and is largely what Zion is known for. This hike is an all day one and you must bring lots and lots of water and snacks. I love this hike because most of the time you are walking through a flowing river.
It’s so fun to be in the river and the views are GORGEOUS!!!
This is rated as a moderate trail and leads to three separate pools. The water is a beautiful emerald blue/green. The trail is mostly shady making it a good hike for any time of day.
Another super popular hike at Zion, Angels Landing is a hard hike that has some beautiful scenery.
Once you reach the top of the outcropping you get an amazing view of the canyon. If you are brave you can hike the extremely narrow trail to the very top. The name comes from the thought that the peak is so high that only angels would be able to land there. Pretty cool huh
While this one isn’t really a hike so much as a short walk this is one of my favorite places in Zion. A short and steep trail leads you underneath an overhang. This is where the magic is.
Water pours off the edge of this rock and it’s beautiful. It feels like it’s raining from the rock. There really isn’t any way for me to properly describe this beauty.
What are your favorite Utah hikes? I’d love to give them a try!
Over the weekend Tyler and I joined my family at Lava Hot Springs for a fun weekend get away.
Lava Hot Springs is located in Idaho just a two hour drive from my home. It's a tiny little town and is easily passed by, but it's totally worth the stop!
Lava, as my family calls it, is a grouping of natural Hot Springs. They've been built into several separate pools that serve as natural hot tubs. The water is naturally heated and the main pools have 4 separate pools that vary in heat. The pools are very relaxing and full of natural minerals.
However the pools are my least favorite part of Lava. They're far too hot for my liking (I'm a total wimp about water temperature and don't enjoy hot tubbing).
The best and most fantastic part of Lava is the RIVER!
I love love love playing in water and the best part of going to Lava is getting to raft the river!
The river is heated naturally just like the pools but it's actually not very warm (think warm swimming pool), which is totally fine by me. This river is perfect for rafting, it's not super wide, has some slow flowing sections with just enough rapids and dips to make it super fun. If you're adventurous enough there's even a waterfall you can raft down!
My family starts our ride of the river at the same spot every year and it takes us about 20 minutes to ride from the top to the exit point. This year we got a fantastic surprise. The entrance spot we use used to be just a steep hill down to the river with lots of rocks and it was actually quite dangerous to get down. This year they had put in a walking trail with a platform to launch your rafts off of. It’s pretty awesome and made getting into the river super easy!
I honestly love rafting the river more than I can explain and it's the highlight of my trip. In past years I have played it safe though. Never really being adventurous. This year I decided to change that! I decided to try the waterfall!
I thought I could handle the waterfall as over previous years my younger sister and cousins (ages ranging from 6 to 12) went down it several times. Well as Tyler, my cousin Amanda, and I went over the waterfall things went anything but smoothly.
The waterfall has two exit points to it. A nice smooth one that flows over a larger bolder and is a fun ride, another that is a straight drop off that causes the tube to go vertical. Well as you can probably guess, our tube went vertical and it was so not fun.
As we went over the edge I was going backwards and went down first. Directly above me was Tyler. As we spilt over the edge, Tyler fell down towards me. He ended up kicking me in the face and gave me a bloody nose and a fat lip!
I got a totally hilarious video of it and you can watch it below. You can totally hear Tyler yell “I kicked her in the face!!” and then hear me yell “Tyler get off me!
Well the fiasco with the waterfall didn’t keep me off the river, I rafted down it for another 3 or so hours. However I did not go back down the waterfall.
But don’t let my story keep you from the waterfall. Other members of my family went down it almost every trip and had a blast. Just keep yourself on the path to the smooth decent and you’ll be totally fine.
Here's some more photos and videos of me going down the river :)
For those of you who are not adventure seekers, Lava is still a fun destination. The little town is so charming. There’s several little shops and restaurants. This trip my family didn’t eat out but in past trips we always visit the Wagon Wheel. It’s a cute little place with good breakfast food.
The town also has plenty of places to stay, lots of hotel options including two right across the street from the Hot Springs.
Lava also has camping options which my family uses. We stayed at Mary’s Place. It’s a tent and RV camping site and is located just outside of the main town entrance. Our spot this year was located very close to the road and the train track making it extra loud. But if you don’t mind the occasional train horn the campground is really nice and shady.
In addition to the river and hot springs, there's a pool that is actually pretty cool! We didn’t visit it this weekend but have in the past. The pool is heated by the hot springs and has some cool waterslides, two of which go over a road.
Overall I had a fabulous trip and hope to return to a family favorite weekend destination.
Hi! My name is Kylie. I'm 21 years old and am married to my best friend! I love my wonderfully normal life and hope you do too.