Portland Round 2

For those of you that aren’t aware, we just got back from a family trip to Portland and if you’ve been keeping track we’ve been there once before. This time was a completely different experience. That’s what happens when your family doubles in size and you don’t put 4,000 miles on a rental in a single trip.

This time, the greatest part of the trip wasn’t a great party with dancing and celebration or the phenomenal scenery at every turn or the chance to see huge parts of the country for the first time. It might be cliche but the greatest part of the trip this time was experiencing everything through the eyes of our kids and spending lots of time with family.

Recently Reece has been ecstatic about anything that moves (planes, trains, helicopters, tractors, boats etc.) so we try to expose him to what we can. I cannot properly express the size of my sons eyes as he looked out the airport windows at the plane we were about to get on, turns to us and shouts AIRPLANE! He quieted down on the plane but he was insanely excited about the whole process. One of the places we visited in Oregon was the Airplane Museum and I swear that when he walked into the place he thought it was holy ground.

Delilah wouldn’t stop talking about the entire trip. With all of this, remember that she’s three and she’s totally serious. While sitting on the tarmac for the first flight out she yelled “why aren’t we flying yet!?” Much to the amusement of everyone around us. One evening while out in Oregon with family we saw “the first star at night” and we asked her what she wished for. She thought for a minute and then whispered quietly “that we can come to Oregon again.” After arriving back in Rochester, the first thing she said in the airport? “I want to go back to Oregon.”

These are just a few examples but we could tell just watching them that they were thoroughly enjoying their time in a new and interesting place. What made it really special for them and us was the time they got to spend with family whom they only rarely see and to build the beginnings of their relationship with their cousins. By the end of the trip there seemed to be a real bond forming and we wished we could stay longer.

We can’t wait for the next family adventure whether it takes us to Portland with family or Peru with just the kids.

The Ride In

IMG_4488 On our way to Portland we flew through Newark (New Jersey) and for once we didn’t miss our flights because of it… Of course, once we got on the plane to Portland we did sit on the runway for an hour …sigh

Ahh well, once we were finally in the air Rachel and I watched Kingdom of Heaven on my iPhone and we were then graced with some magnificent views of the Mountainous west coast.

After being in Portland for all of 30 minutes we had a few observations:

  • It’s very green.  There’s huge Ponderosa Pine Trees absolutely everywhere and they’re gorgeous.
  • It’s very green-conscious.  We probably saw 147 bikes between the airport and our Hotel.  There are bike lanes on literally every street, and bike paths next to every highway.  There are “Please Conserve Water” signs everywhere.
  • The flowers are amazing and they’re everywhere
  • It’s Claim Jumpers not Clam Jumpers
  • Shopping is great here.  Lots of outlet stores and no sales tax!  This doesn’t mean we’ll be doing any this trip, but it certainly is a good place to go if you’d like to.  The pearl district seems to be where all the higher class shops are.
  • Unemployment is bad here, we saw beggars on pretty much every major intersection between the airport and the hotel.

We had a great trip in and a nice relaxing first day.