Sunday, June 25, 2017

Memories in Port Townsend

My family has been taking trips to Port Townsend, Washington since before I was born. In fact, we still own the property near North Beach where my Grandpa was born. It's one of my favorite places in the world, a charming, memory-filled place that's just perfect for weekend getaways.

A long time ago, we planned a trip there to celebrate my Grandpa's 83rd birthday. It seems like just yesterday that I was there with baby Ryder for Grandpa's 80th birthday. But even though he's since gone on to bigger and better things, we still wanted to spend the weekend together in Port Townsend, maybe his very favorite place in the world, to remember and celebrate his life.

Gosh, I sure do miss him. 

But it felt good to be together for a weekend of memories and healing.

My parents got an awesome camp site right on the beach at historic Fort Worden, and it was an absolutely perfect weekend to spend on the Olympic Peninsula. Temperatures were well into the high 90s at home, but in Port Townsend we enjoyed breezy low 80s and lovely sunshine.

Ryder loved going for scooter rides around the campground.

Lounging at the camp site.

Hanging out with Aunt Erin.

Extended family hanging out after a birthday dinner for Grandpa.

Kiley spent a fair amount of time napping in the RV.

She also got in some cuddle time with Papa.

Ryder loves the beach.

I mean seriously, if we didn't actually force him to leave, I think he'd stay there until the end of time. 

Digging, throwing rocks, looking at various creatures, building sand castles, helping search for sea glass... He never runs out of fun activities. He never gets tired, or hot, or cold, or hungry.

It's his happy place.

As for Kiley, she's pretty much just along for the ride and game for anything. We just post her up in the shade and she's good to go.

Nana is happy to play at the beach with Ryder for hours and hours.

Ryder catching a ride with Uncle AJ.

Just like I did when I was a kid, Ryder loved exploring Fort Worden. 

Originally designed as a military base during World War II to protect the Puget Sound, the original coastal artillery batteries are perfect for climbing and exploring.

One thing that we never miss in Port Townsend is getting ice cream at Nifty Fiftys Soda Fountain downtown. 

Stew and Ryder always choose bubble gum ice cream. 

Like father, like son.

Thanks to my wonderful, amazing grandparents, Port Townsend has been our family's home away from home for more than 30 years. I was Kiley's age when I first started going there. And even though, for the first time, my grandparents weren't physically present on this trip, the memories they spent a lifetime creating will live on through the generations of people they left behind.

I think that's pretty special.

And I can't wait for my children to experience their own lifetime of memories in this incredible place.

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