I'm kind of behind on keeping y'all updated on my travels at this point because I have really been trying to take it all in and truly enjoy these last few days in the Pacific Northwest.
Following a delicious, home-made pancake breakfast Friday morning, we explored the coast, starting with Cape Meares' beautiful sights, including Three Arch Rocks National Wildlife Refuge, the Octopus Tree, and the lighthouse.
We then took a moment to rest on a lovely driftwood bench on a beach in Tillamook. Believe it or not, this was the first day of my entire trip that we didn't have sunshine. And, though it seems to contrary to a day spent checking out the coast, I so enjoyed the clouds and wind. Hoodies all around!
One of my favorite detours of this adventure was our stop at the Tillamook Cheese Factory. Now y'all should know by now that I love me some cheese...and food in general, really. And I also adore shows like Food Network's "Unwrapped" that go behind the scenes of factories and production lines (bizarre thing to like, I know). So this excursion was right up my alley! Not to mention, I love me some photo ops that involve cows. (Again, bizzare. Just roll with it.)
Cut to the gorgeous drive back: I knew that I had found my route of choice for mind-clearing escapes if/when I am ready to call Portland home. (This is where all my Dallas-based friends go ballistic and threaten to chain me down.)
We headed downtown Portland to Montage for Happy Hour, which consisted of their must-have mac 'n cheese and a glass of shiraz-cabernet. An absolutely delightful meal, improved only by the fact that is was $7...total.
Stuffed and happy, indeed, we spent a chill evening in, watching movies.
On Saturday, we slept in. And it was good.
It was so nice to just throw on a t-shirt, jeans, and a handkerchief for a Starbucks run and errands. Portland, FTW! We went to a wedding shower for a couple of The Chickens' friends (I obviously traded out the comfies for the occasion), and it was so impressive to me how welcomed and relaxed I felt given that I had only met the bride yesterday morning (over aforementioned pancakes). The people in this area are aces and have really enhanced this trip more than I can say!
We finally made it to Vita Cafe, where I about had a meltdown trying to narrow down my dinner order; there was just too much deliciousness! (It was similar to the first time I went to Spiral Diner.) After walking off our yummy dinners on the uber trendy (and oh-so-dangerous) 23rd Street, we once again retired to the condo for relaxation and movie time.
I can't believe that Sunday has now arrived, and this amazing adventure is coming to an end as I fly back to Dallas this afternoon. While there is truly no place like home, this trip has fed my soul in a way that I needed so badly right now. I'm so thankful that I had the means and the will to do this.