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Living The Dream (well, I'm trying...)

Midwest Meets The Northwest 
Nov. 6, 2011 9:10 am 
Updated: Nov. 13, 2011 1:12 pm
Sunday, October 23rd, after spending a delightful Thursday with Marianne from SoCal, The Midwest hooked up with the Northwest. Our very own Magnolia Blossom and her DH flew from Illinois to Tacoma to see their son John who is stationed at McCord Army Base in Washington state.

Side note: Thank you John for your service to our beloved USA! I salute you and all the service men and women who voluntarily make up the armed forces in this country to protect our freedoms! I would have loved meeting you and personally thanking you.

With a limited (and uncertain) amount of time to spend with her son, Magnolia Blossom gave us an entire day to spend with HER. What a gift! Christine NICU RN and I first met MB at Mauigirl’s home during the Las Vegas bash this past May. We were very excited for her to come so we could connect again. We were also very happy that she would get to meet Avon.

MB drove down from Tacoma and we drove up from Albany to Portland, Oregon . We met at the Train Station where she could park her rental car and hop in my little car for a PNW tour, Portland style, beginning with a slight detour east.

We began the 40 minute drive to the beautiful Multnomah Falls east of Portland. As I pulled onto the freeway, MB said “Oh, I saw the Falls on the internet and was hoping I’d get to see it.”  Having met Lora in LV, I learned that she is an explorer and adventurer. (as am I) I knew right then, we’d made a good choice driving up the “GORGE” to the Falls.

There were no uncomfortable reconnecting moments or getting to know you awkwardness what-so-ever. All four of us immediately began talking and yapping; all at once and one over the other until we arrived at the Falls. It felt like we’d know each other since forever. Well, that’s where the tide turned. The first thing we saw walking up to the Falls area was this sign:

Spawning Creek

We walked on further to cross the creek bridge when Avon brought to our attention a male Salmon fighting the current in his attempt to “swim up stream” to do what comes naturally this time of year….SPAWN. After witnessing a few “love” encounters, (which btw, was viewed by countless onlookers) the jokes began to fly…. This set the tone for our day. We were gonna have fun!
Me taking a picture of you taking a picture of me.
I think there's a theme here!

Just before we started our hike up to the Water Fall

Multnomah Water Falls in the background

Lora, the tourist

What a beautiful trio!
This is where our hike ended. We're about a third of the way to the top.

The falls and surrounding scenery were beautiful, but we had other fish to fry (get it? … fish) so we headed back to Portland for more adventures. It was on the drive back that MB cracked me up so bad, I almost wrecked the car. Well, STB….. AR would most probably edit, so I cannot tell you here what she said that got us all so tickled. We’ll just have to figure out a way to let you know. It’s been 2 weeks since and I’m still Laughing and Laughing!!!

Once we were back in Portland, we drove round and round the city and made stops to see lots of things that make and keep Portland Weird. A tagline and badge of honor Portlandiers wear proudly, “Keep Portland Weird” is their motto.
Painted on the side of a downtown building
We visited the downtown Food Truck District.....
Sampling Food bites

hmmmmmmm, what should I get?

Well, looky there.... Magnolia Blossom and Avon

ate lunch at the famous Jake’s Restaurant....
A wonderful time of eating and visiting

Stood in line at the television famous, “Voodoo Doughnuts” just to get our sugar on...

Avon & Christine NICU RN placing their order.
Notice the window behind Avon.... people standing in line
Most often, there is at least a one hour wait (sometimes more)

Magnolia Blossom's purchase for her DH & DS

We ended up at the Saturday Market under the bridge where being weird is an art form.
Piano man "peddling" his music - Literally

Have you ever seen anything like this?

Our last adventure was a short ride on the Max, Portland’s transit system.
A quick tour downtown via the MAX

It was getting late and time to head back to the train station to deposit our very tired friend so she could get started on her 3 hour drive back to her family in Tacoma. It wasn’t until she got back that her husband noticed a burst blood vessel in her eye. We can only surmise it was from laughing all day.

I can’t remember laughing so hard in a long while. Avon’s a hoot, Christine NICU RN’s got a quick wit and Magnolia Blossom is just down right funny! I laughed that day until my belly hurt. We had a time I will certainly not forget.

I’ve said this before; the peeps I’ve met from this site are wonderful. They’re all very different and come from all walks of life. It’s been MY TRUE PLEASURE and blessing. Thank you Magnolia Blossom for spending time with us that Sunday. Many Hugs To You!
Nov. 6, 2011 9:21 am
You described Magnolia Blossom to a T. She is a true adventurer and not afraid of going out to explore on her own. I love her wit too. It looks like you girls had a great time. What a beautiful bunch of ladies BTW. I was so tickled to see that you ate at my favorite restaurant "Jakes Crawfish". I love that place. Thanks for sharing your fun dat. I so wish I could have been there. Warmest aloha.....
Nov. 6, 2011 10:20 am
Nice pictures of the water falls, You got to love that.
Nov. 6, 2011 10:53 am
the GREAT NORTHWEST! i've said it before and i'll say it again...JUST GREAT FOLKS!! i know ya had a BLAST! congrats on the pictures. the piano-peddlig guy would get arrested in south ga....lol! keep portland weird...yeah great place, i love it!
Nov. 6, 2011 11:17 am
Great.....what the heck more can I add? One slight correction though Candice, her son is at Ft. Lewis. That's the army base, and McChord is the air force base. He's in the army right? Anyway, such a fun day and such fun new midwestern slang that we learned. MB, please come back and visit us anytime. We loved having you, even if it was just a day.
Nov. 6, 2011 11:29 am
Awww, heck! Look what I missed! How great is this! I'm being shamed into trying AGAIN to figure out the photo stuff. I swear you do the best job! These are great!
Nov. 6, 2011 11:55 am
What a wonderful visit! I just love seeing these blogs. I have such great memories of meeting all of you. :) Wishing you were all going to be joining the So. Cal. gals next weekend. We are heading to Tom's Farms.
Nov. 6, 2011 12:15 pm
oooooooo!!!!! What a gorgeous group of gals!!! I am seriously so jealous that all these get-togethers are going on and they are sooooo far away from where I am that it isn't possible for me to go...pooh! I loved the pic of that waterfall! stunning! and the peddling piano...uh...interesting!! :) Glad you gals had a great time!
Nov. 6, 2011 1:58 pm
awww look at you ladies...ya know I soo wished I could have joined...loved to have been there. Great photos!!
Nov. 6, 2011 2:44 pm
Well, STB! I know what it means LOLOLOL! I am ever so grateful MB is the intrepid explorer that she is. I don't even think I have enough adjectives to describe how great it has been meeting her and because of her the other ladies that have come here for roundups. Your photos are great they just make me want to hug you all! I'm so glad MB was there for a visit with you ladies. And yes, John is in the Army. God bless him!
Nov. 6, 2011 4:17 pm
I think I know what STB means. ... Portland is Wierd. I thought they had typo'd wired. Maybe, I should stop thinking now. ... Glad you had such a great time, Candice.
Nov. 6, 2011 5:37 pm
You all look lovely! So glad you had a great day together wish I could have joined you all....maybe one day.....!
Nov. 7, 2011 5:40 am
True story Candice......after reading this blog yesterday, I was driving on the freeway and I saw a white chevy pickup (nevada plates) with a bumper sticker that said Keep Portland Weird. I wanted to chase them down I 215 to get a pic for you, but I am sure driving and photographing is illegal :)
Nov. 7, 2011 7:10 am
Mauigirl, thank you for coming by and reading my blog about our very fun day with Lora. I SO wish you could've been there with us. It would've been like a LV reunion - sort of. Jake's is MY favorite Portland Restaurant too.... BUT, they took their most wonderful Bread Pudding off the menu. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT??? The food though remains the best!
Nov. 7, 2011 7:12 am
Just read your post about "Keeping Portland Weird" bumpersticker. How funny. Now, I'm cracked up all over again. It IS quite the experience touristing Portland. I guess that's why I love to go to there! LOL!!!
Nov. 7, 2011 7:16 am
Kingsparta, thank you for your comments. Multnomah Falls is breath takingly beautiful. It was in the movie Twighlight and for that matter, it's been filmed in many movies. You should see it in real life!
Nov. 7, 2011 7:21 am
Gary, thanks so much for visiting my blog. I'm assuming you've been to the town that seems to attract so much weird-ness! I love Portland. Never a dull moment and lots to see.
Nov. 7, 2011 7:43 am
I love that waterfall. You guys had such a lovely time together. You can never laugh too much.One of these days I hope to meet all of you great people.
Nov. 7, 2011 8:04 am
Very quick note, cause I'm on the run. I will comment more later. I got myself confused and told Candice the wrong thing, because the base is now Joint Base Lewis-McCord for the army/air force. And "Buford" is in the Army.
Nov. 7, 2011 2:18 pm
Oh Marianne, it would have been so awesome if you could have been there with us. Timing! It's all about the timing isn't it?
Nov. 7, 2011 2:19 pm
And, please do not feel bad or shamed. If you only knew how much I struggled getting both these blogs up.... I am so "blog" challenged. Seriously!
Nov. 7, 2011 2:22 pm
Yes Avon, it was a wonderfully fun day! What more can I say...
Nov. 7, 2011 2:25 pm
Baking Nana, thank you for dropping by again to comment on my blog about Magnolia Blossom's visit. I love reading about AR peeps getting together too. I just wish I could be there with you all next week. You'll have such a grand time. But, what I really want to participate in is the "cookie" decorating party at your house. I'm already working up a good WHINE!!!!
Nov. 7, 2011 2:28 pm
Happy Monday Gitano, and a big "wet" (it's raining) hug to you. Thanks so much for stopping in to read about our adventures with Lora. She's so great! And, all these ladies are beautiful inside and out. Now, if you'd like to host a get-together......
Nov. 7, 2011 2:30 pm
Hiya mis7up, thanks for droppping by. We had so much fun with Lora. But, you KNOW how much fun she is. Thanks... it was so difficult to get those pics uploaded. Thought I'd pull my hair out.
Nov. 7, 2011 6:18 pm
Stopping back in everybody. I had an absolutely wonderful time with the Oregon gals. Primary reason for the visit was to see our son, but I so wanted to be able to see Candice and Christine after meeting them in Vegas. Meeting Avon was a great bonus! I've mentioned on other blogs that if you have a chance to meet AR members, just DO IT. Looks like the Michigan round-up was a success too. You won't regret meeting these folks. I have to try to get my pics together, although I don't know that mine will be any different than Candice's, but I will put together a blog shortly. Thanks again to "the girls". We had sooo much fun!
Nov. 7, 2011 6:21 pm
Well, really... STB! That darn Luigi has haunted my computers. I log out and log in with my info it may save my info for a day, but next time I log in, there he is again. Therefore... the comments above are from me, Magnolia Blossom, not Mr. Luigi! Any ideas how to keep the log in from changing back and forth?
Nov. 7, 2011 6:45 pm
Cat Hill, LOL! When MB said that I'd thought I would. STB, that is. I laughed so hard. Then, of course we all said it all day long. Everything was STB this and STB that; and then we'd laugh. She's so much fun. And, when I come to see you, I will just give you a great big hug. Thank you for coming by and commenting.
Nov. 7, 2011 6:51 pm
Trishie, it would have been so great for you to have there! You would have had the bestest time. MB, Avon and Christine NICU RN are just f-u-n!!!
Nov. 7, 2011 7:03 pm
Mike, you do? Well, it is a Midwestern saying isn't it? And, yes Portland is wired AND weird. Everybody's walking around with earbuds in their ears, IPOD's and IPAD's and don't even go into a Starbucks....laptops all over. Yes, in addition to being "weird," Portland is very "wired."
Nov. 7, 2011 7:07 pm
Char, I never get tired of going to see the Falls. It is so majestic! Yes, laughing is so great and good for you too! I love to laugh. Thanks so much for stopping in to read my blog.
Nov. 9, 2011 6:21 am
Oh, Candice, what a great experience to spend the whole day with friends from AR!! Looks like you had a ball! Beautiful sites, pics and friends. How wnoderful. Thank you so much for sharing!!
Nov. 9, 2011 12:17 pm
I'll be back later to actually read this (plus, I owe you an email!) - but I just wanted to comment quickly - Look at Avon's shoes - Looks like she thinks she's attending a So Cal Hen Party =DDD [Don't I just wish!]
Nov. 9, 2011 12:18 pm
[AND, I am jealous of the bridges and the waterfalls, too, now!]
Nov. 9, 2011 2:57 pm
I've got a tentative month in mind for the next middle of the Midwest roundup and I truly look forward to seeing my old friends and making some more new ones. Afraid we don't have salmon spawning or tall gorgeous waterfalls here. We do have a crazed person that's usually running around trying to tie up last minute details with dear MB calmly asking if she can help. Does that count? LOLOL!
Nov. 9, 2011 5:49 pm
Barb, that is my shoe of choice. Unless there is snow on the ground, or I'm running a marathon (which is unlikely) I'm a flip-flop girl from way back!
Nov. 10, 2011 2:22 pm
Mickdee, You are absolutely right! I can't think of a better way to spend the day.
Nov. 10, 2011 2:23 pm
BTW, looks like you all had a most wonderful time too. I want to meet you and all the others. NEXT time for sure!!!
Nov. 10, 2011 2:25 pm
Hi Barb, thanks for stopping in to read my blog. I can't tell you how much I wish you coulda been here with us. I love to listen to you laugh and trust me; you would have been laughing all day, just like the rest of us.
Nov. 10, 2011 2:28 pm
Cat, oh that's wonderful. Which month? I've got my Midwest RoundUp envelope started. I love the Midwest. The last time I was there was when Christine NICU RN was on assignment in Indianpolis, IN. She took me down to Brown County. We had a ball. I can't wait to come back.
Nov. 10, 2011 2:29 pm
Oh... And, YES!!!! It "SO" counts! LOL!
Nov. 10, 2011 2:31 pm
Avon, I love the "flip-flop" look. I wear then whenever I can. Though, at my age, I'm still calling them "thongs." I know, I know, that's Butt floss these days. Just showing my age, I guess.
Nov. 10, 2011 6:15 pm
Brown County? Now, you're talki
Nov. 10, 2011 6:19 pm
Dang! Between fumblefingers, and pushing wrong buttons---. Nashville (in Brown County) is the most beautiful place to shop during the Christmas Season! We used to go down the day after TG when my VA bro. and wife came up. Did you see the hand-blown glass tree ornaments? Glad you like the Mid-West!
Nov. 11, 2011 7:02 am
Mamaw, I LOVE the Midwest. And, I LOVE Brown County. I DID see the glass blown ornaments. Absolutely beautiful! It's a wonderful place to shop.
Nov. 12, 2011 8:59 am
Ok for the record, RATZ! Hub and I lived in Woodinville WA 12 years and I miss the PNW every day. You ladies and all your fun just made me plain jealous! SIGH. Maybe someday this Kansas City lady will get to go back under the rainshadow. Till then, congrats on having such a wonderful time together!
Nov. 12, 2011 7:56 pm
flyover girl, I love your AR name btw! Thank you so very much for stopping by to read my blog. There is just NO place at all like the PNW, is there? Wherever we travel, when we come home, we always agree that Oregon is still the best place on earth. And, if you ever do come to back here, give me a jingle. We'll hook up.
Nov. 13, 2011 1:12 pm
Let me know when you're heading back Indy way, and we'll have to get together!
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I am a wife and mother of 5 grown children. Being semi-retired has allowed me time to do things I've put off doing; like really learning to cook and bake. I also love to garden, read, scrapbook and just recently I've gotten into geneology. I am loving this phase of my life with my husband and family.
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