A wonderful respite from the normal routine.
It was my husbands birthday - and I guess we have reached the place where we would rather escape for a few days than receive more 'stuff'.
So I gave hime the gift of time at the coast.
Oceanside, Oregon is our favorite beach destination.
About 90 minutes from home.
I have been going to Oceanside since the mid-1960s.
In 1968, my parents bought a cabin -
ok - it was really more of a shack.
But we loved it - so many memories of adventures, and make believe, and beach combing, and sand castles, and beach fires, and clamming, and fishing, and crabbing and body surfing.
I could write volumes about my beach memories at oceanside.
And none of them involve shopping malls or arcades or restaurants.
I hesitate to share the wonders of this small town because I love the remote feel of it.
But that would be selfish - so let me take you on a tour of this quaint town.
This is Roseanna's Cafe - one of the few restaurants in town. Up until the last few years, it was the ONLY restaurant in town.
And prior to that . . .it was a grocery store.
I have fond memories of the store -
We would return them to the store and collect our earnings - anywhere from 5 cents to 50 cents, depending on how lucky we were.
Then we would take our earnings and splurge on a candy bar or a bottle of orange or grape soda.
If we were especially lucky and found several soda bottles, we would reserve one, put part of our riches into the spare bottle, find a remote spot in the hillside and bury it.
Then we would create a treasure map to take us back on our next visit.
Afterall - we were at the beach - we needed to pretend we were pirates!
The store also had a box of 10 cent toys - mostly junk of course.
But I would buy something almost every time we came to stay.
a rubber ball, or a set of jacks, or a mini-baby bottle for my doll.
they would send me down to the market to buy a cold drink and a candy bar.
The market changed when the owners died.
they were actually kind of grumpy people - they scared me a bit as a child.
I never knew how I would be received when I went in - a cheerful hello or a grumble.
The house with the red door.
Whenever I walk by this doorway, I feel myself being drawn in.
It is such an inviting entryway.
You just know that once you step into this entryway, you will have been transported into a more relaxing state of mind.
I love the red with the contrast of the creeping thyme and its blue flowers.
And it smelled amazing.
Brewin in the Wind is the local coffee shop.
For years, Oceanside didn't have a coffee shop.
Before it was a coffee shop, it was originally in the home of the owner of a row of rental cottages.
The owner - Mr. Kirk - was the epitome of curmudgeon.
He ran the cottages with his wife - a very sweet older woman.
He grumbled about people and their noisy kids, the weather, the stupidity of tourists. . .
Even as a little girl, I remember thinking -
"if you don't like tourists, rain or kids - why are you running a motel in a touristy beach town."
I guess some people just like to grumble.
I remember when the coffee shop first opened -
a young couple looking to live in an ocean town had moved to Oregon from California.
It has been sold a few times since then and recently moved to a larger location.
Plus - I love their logo.
And then of course - while at the beach, you have to do some "beachcombing".
One of my favorite things to do.
Looking at all the treasures washed up on the shore.
All of the winter storms had tossed up a huge log.
And this log must have been bobbing around in the water for a very long time -
it is completely covered in barnacles.
A bit of art by Mother Nature herself.