Monday, September 29, 2008

My Hometown

While in the northwest at my Grandmother's funeral, we were able to return to my hometown, Astoria, Oregon for a couple of days. I definitely feel a "pull" to this area. I have a lot of ancestors that lived by the Columbia River and I feel a connection to them. I always feel like I am "home" while in this great historical city. In the picture above, Dayna and I are on top of the famous Elliot Hotel. It has been renovated and we were able to take the elevator to the top. From this view, you can see almost all of Astoria. If you look really close, you can see the Astor Column behind us on the very top of the hill. My kids love to climb the column whenever we come here.
This is a view from the other side of the roof on top of the Elliot Hotel. Seated with me is our life long friend, Cathy Oja. We met when we were three years old and have stayed in touch ever since.
We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express while in Astoria. This is a view from our hotel window on the first afternoon that we were in town. It was very grey and overcast. However, I loved it! I know a lot of people can't stand the dreary northwest days, but I really like them. They just seem so soothing to me.
This is also a view in the other direction from our hotel window. If you look really close, you can see the mouth of the Columbia River. Throughout the day many ships would come in from sea and travel right past our window on their way to Portland. It was great to see those massive ships and hear the fog horns in the early morning.
Our last morning in Astoria, we woke up to this beautiful day! The air in the northwest is so clear and crisp. I told my Mom that I wanted to bottle it up and take it home. It seemed especially clean and crisp that morning.
Another view on the same morning. This was just below our window and we called it our "mini beach"-Ha! At night we left the windows open so that we could hear the water coming in on the shore. I slept so good those two nights!
This is the Liberty Theater in downtown Astoria. This is where I saw my very first movie, "Cinderella".
When we went to Seaside later in the day, Pete shocked us all by actually pulling out his own money and buying some candy. I was so dumbfounded that I quickly got my camera and snapped a picture to freeze this moment in time!
The day we visited the beach in Seaside, it is incredibly beautiful. As you can see, hardly a cloud in the sky.
Another picture at the beach. I have not been to the beach in Seaside recently when it has been such a perfect day. There was hardly even a breeze.

I really love my hometown and look forward to returning as many times as possible.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

See Pete, See Pete Read

While we were in the northwest this past weekend, Pete informed us that a book, "Brisingr", he had been waiting for was released. So...on the way to the funeral Saturday morning, we actually stopped at the Wal-Mart in St Helen's so that he could purchase the book. After that he pretty much had his nose in a book everywhere we went. I noticed that no matter where we were, he was reading. After a while I started taking pictures of him so that he could remember what he did on this trip. I got pictures EVERYWHERE...except the bathroom. I decided to draw the line there-Ha! ( should be thanking me for that)

In the picture above he is reading in Fultano's Pizza in Astoria. You would never know that he had about 15 people around him visiting and talking.
This is in Astoria outside a cafe while we were waiting to be seated.
This is in Seaside at the Pig n' Pancake...
This is at the Olive Garden in Clackamas...
This is at the Comfort Suites in Clackamas...
In the van heading for the beach in Seaside...
And Denny's...not quite sure where??? Evidently it was a good book :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Family Pictures

I have just returned from the northwest where I attended the funeral of my 94 year old Grandmother, Laurice Brinkerhoff. Although we will all miss Grandma, we know she is in a wonderful place with her dear husband, Bert. It was nice to see and visit with many family members that I had not seen in a very long time.

Above is a picture of my family (my Dad, Dayna, Mark, Kirk, my Mom and myself). It has been a very long time since we have all been together to take a picture.

This is a picture of all of the cousins that were able to attend the graveside service. I am very fortunate to be part of such a great extended family. I really enjoyed this trip and have a lot of pictures to share in the days to come.

Monday, September 15, 2008

You Know You Are A Redneck When...

...You use a blow torch to light your birthday candles :) I have been meaning to post this for a while, but life has just been crazy and I forgot about it. A couple of weeks ago my Dad was in town and on the Friday evening that he was here we had a barbeque at Mark's house to celebrate the 20th birthday of Mark's twins, Tavyn and Tyson. We could not find a lighter anywhere to light the candles and the next thing we knew, Colton came running up to the table with a blow torch and said "Will this work???" We all thought...Why not?! It was pretty funny watching Mark and Brandt get into the lighting of the candles. We were all kidding around and came up with the Redneck joke. Lezlie has some pictures on her blog about it too. Maybe we will have to make this a family tradition-Hmmmmmm :)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Unexpected Quick Trip

I just returned from a very quick trip to Boise. Dayna and I originally had planned on going to Sun Valley this weekend with our Mom. Dayna had a seminar there for her work and she invited me and Mom to come along and enjoy a luxurious room while she was gone in the daytime and then we would do things at night. Unfortunately, I forgot to take my camera, so I do not have any pictures to share.

Anyway...I got a phone call from Dayna Wednesday last week telling me that Mom had just hurt her back and that she would not be able to go to Sun Valley with us. After some discussion it was decided that Dayna would go to Sun Valley for her seminar and that I would head on to Boise and take care of Mom for the weekend. My Mom was not doing too well and for the first time in her life, she was using a walker. We were all a bit concerned that she will not be able to make it to the northwest this coming weekend for her Mother's funeral. However, I think that she will make it. I told her that we will do whatever it takes to get her there. Dayna and I are flying with her, so hopefully she will be okay.

I really enjoyed my short weekend with my Mom. My only regret is the amount of time I spent driving! I told Mom that I am glad that we are flying to Portland and not driving. After this quick trip, another 14 hour drive is not too appealing :)

Another great bonus for our weekend was that Dayna and I actually crossed paths on our way home this afternoon. Through cell phone communication, we miraculously found each other and even were able to stop and have a short visit at a gas station on I-84!

It is good to be least for 5 days, and then off again. This weekend I will be sure to take my camera!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Another Vanilla Joy Giveway !

I don't know how Kelsey keeps finding this great stuff, but she is amazing! My friend, Kelsey, has this wonderful website full of homemaking/motherhood ideas that she updates four days a week. This week she has two giveaways going on. The first is for a Yoplait Yogurt package and the second is for a baby announcement giveaway package. She has friend named Jeri who has a business doing these amazing baby announcements. You can see what kind of work she does at I highly suggest you take a peek at daily to see what she comes up with next! Thanks Kelsey!

Monday, September 8, 2008

God Be With You 'Til We Meet Again

My Grandmother, Laurice Hilma Richardson Brinkerhoff, passed away today at the wonderful age of 94. What an amazing women she was! It is hard to put into words the impact she has had on so many people. In the picture above, she is sitting with Emma at Emma's baptism. Emma's middle name is Laurice (pronounced Lore-iss), after her amazing great grandmother.

My Grandma was the first member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on the Richardson side of my family. She was truly our family pioneer. Since her conversion, 16 grandsons and 5 great-grandsons (including Christopher) have answered the call to serve full time missions and spread the gospel to all parts of the world. I imagine that there were many spirits in heaven that anxiously awaited her arrival. How grateful my children knew this elect lady and can call her their great grandmother. I also am grateful that she was released from her mortal body and is now progressing onward in a new journey. We love you, Grandma, and will miss you very much. God be with you 'til we meet again.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Nurse Tara

Tara is taking a Medical Assisting class at MATC each morning during school hours. She is required to wear scrubs and I thought that she looked kind of cute, so I snapped a picture one day. She is on her way to becoming a nurse...We love you Tara! Keep up the good work :)