Future Photog?

I can't remember when the love of taking pictures happened, but James has the photo bug. My goodness, he loooooves to take pictures. Thankfully he's totally good with the camera so we just let him do it when he actually finds the camera (which is a feat all on its own, the way i lose that thing). Last week he found it and it has been awhile since he used it. And he made up for it... by taking 61 pictures. Has to make up for lost time.

I'm going to present some in series. Because that literally is how he takes pictures. The first series is entitled "My Body". Really, it is. I saw the camera in the middle of the photo craze and the first picture I saw was his hair. I asked him what it was and he simply replied, "I was taking pictures of my different body parts!" 
 Oh maaaan...
 Don't forget the more specific finger
 He got his large toe caught under our front door and cut it. He obviously needed to include the pained toe
This next series is "I Love My Toys"
 Flynn Rider's boots, down below
 this one is actually pretty cool
Final series- "I Love My Cat"
Wait... those were not the final ones... we forgot the epic selfies...
 And my absolute favorite one... I was cracking up SO hard
I've said it before and I'll say it again- this kid cracks me up and I LOVE him so much!! Never a dull moment.



Talk about a labor of love. These bookcases were started in April. They were supposed to be done in April. Ha. I greatly underestimated the effort and time that these would take. Brad was amazing and worked so hard on these... burnt himself out a few times in the process, but who can blame him. We also had a few helpers, that without them, they would not be as great as they are. Thomas, my sister's fiance, helped design, cut, and assemble. One of the women I visit teach in our church, her husband has a whole wood workshop in their garage. He let Brad come over and they put the flutes in the small trim. He also let Brad take home some heavy-duty clamps to help wood glue the trim to the bookcases. Now, they are all done! Having bookcases makes the home feel so much more home-y. We still have some boxes to find of books and/or decor. Those empty shelves are begging to be filled! Brad wants to go on a book buying spree. I'm not against that :)
Close up of the trim
 I spy a wing back in progress! I just finished the cushion cover last night, so only a few more things to do, and that will be checked off our list as well
Another addition to our family room is our new couch! Our "old" couch isn't that old. But it's falling apart a bit and it's not our style anymore. The top criteria for our couch was deep, long, and cushy. A family snuggle couch, really. Most of what we liked was out of our price range. Holy cow, couches are expensive! Knowing that our boys are only going to get more active, we definitely didn't want to get an expensive couch and feel like they couldn't use it in fear of ruining it. We found the couch we wanted way back in January (which hit ALL criteria, including price), but wanted to make sure it was "the one". I went back three more times plus shopping at other local stores several times. We finally bit the bullet the end of June and the couch was here three weeks earlier than planned!  We absolutely love it. 
 The boys modeling the couch. They look so small on it
We've been in our new home for 10 months now and I love seeing it progress to ours. Putting our style and our stamp on it. Though it feels every time we check one thing off, we've already put three more things on our to-do list. Ah, well... Keeps us busy!


"Spontaneous" Trip

I have been wanting to go to the coast again for a while. Who doesn't?? But we kept finding ourselves busy every weekend. Last Thursday, I couldn't fight it anymore. I told Brad we were going to the coast on Saturday. Don't make plans, it's going to happen. Giving myself two days to plan and get things ready for a small day trip to the coast is "spontaneous" for me :) 

Instead of going to the coastal town we normally go to, Florence, we decided to go to one a little further away called Newport. We've only been there once and that was for Gavin's second birthday and all we really did was go to the aquarium. Time for some exploring!
First up was the tide pools at Yaquina Head. I always loved going to the coast in California growing up and seeing all the cool stuff in the tide pools- anemone, sponges, crab, starfish, and all the other fun stuff I have no idea what their names are. I will say this- it was really cool, but a whole lot harder to navigate than the California coast. They had no sand. Just stones. At an incline. Made things interesting. The boys liked it, but James got nervous since we had let them know we needed to be careful where to walk/climb. So I think next time I'll just go to the Hatfield Marine Science Center and do their indoor tide pools where they boys can enjoy the creatures more. 
When we first came down to the beach, a guide was telling all visitors that we couldn't touch the starfish if we found any. Apparently they are getting sick and falling apart and they are trying to minimize whatever is happening from spreading. Right before we left, we saw a dead one, but made up for it by seeing about five alive ones. Better note to end on.
We then headed to a place called Aquarium Village. Online it seemed like a really cool place to visit. In person... meh. Fun pirate statues and other things to take pictures with and the boys loved it. The stores were... lacking and did not interest us at all. So we took some pics and moved on!
They were so excited to scramble about on this little ship
Aaaah, don't let it eat me! Jack nailed it
We then went over to Nye Beach. Heard great things about this beach and it did not disappoint. The boys generally only put their feet in the water so I didn't bother with swim stuff. So naturally they found a warm "pool" left over from high tide and got completely soaked and therefore they were put in their extra undies and hoodies. We be stylin'. We played in the sand and just had fun at the beach. After we changed clothes and baby powdered the heck out of the boys (seriously- miracle remover of sand) and went looking for some food. 
Beeline for the ocean!
Let's take some time to appreciate the two-year old in undies. Woot!
Ah, getting food at the coast. The hardest part is choosing where because there are so many places to try! We decided on a place called The Chowder Bowl. I had read some great reviews on their fish and chips (Brad's go-to coast meal) and bad and good reviews on their clam chowder in a bowl. I have only been eating clam chowder for the past three years. And I love it. So even though this was an iffy choice, someone needed to test it. So glad I did. It was pretty good! But I'm not picky (says the girl who just barely started eating clam chowder) :) We got the boys some fries and they then helped me eat my sourdough bowl. Also, they had the nicest staff. Definitely going there again. 
I'd say this trip got the ocean out of my system, but that's never going to happen. It was much needed and we loved it. Family day trips are honestly one of my favorite things. 

On a sidenote, pretty sure two major projects (well, i see them as major) are going to be finishing up at our house this week. And a certain big piece of furniture was delivered to our house on Tuesday. House is coming together!