This is just week two, you guys. Week two! And it’s massive. And I’m starting the post with a skinny bearded man in plaid because Oregon.
Let’s seeeeee…..when I left you last, we were headed to the Farmer’s Market. (two weeks ago today. my bad.) So let’s start there. Kansas City has some incredible (huge!) farmer’s markets, but the quaintness and charm of this Manzanita setup is right up my alley. It’s not DINKY by any means, but also not oozing with psycho people shoulder to shoulder trying to grab the juiciest stone fruit they can find.
And it’s open at NIGHT. I’d never heard of such a thing! A night market. You do know what that’s code for, right? Wine in a water bottle. I knew we were alike, you and me.
The man said, “Take a cherry, kids! Try them!” And my gremlins took that to mean eat all the cherries. So I then felt obligated to buy 67 pounds of cherries. Never looked back.
BEST. SMOKED. SALMON. I’ve ever eaten. I don’t know the company who sells these (maybe Neahkahnie Smokehouse?), but I’ve bought it twice now and it’s become the way of my soul. The first time I bought the collar (oilier, a little less expensive, eyes-to-the-back-of-the-head-delish), so this time I wanted to try a fillet, but I couldn’t remember that the collar was called the collar, and when I was describing the collar to my in-laws (post on their visit coming next week!) I said, “Last time I got the neck,” and everyone stared at me in total confusion bordering a barf. And the salmon dude goes, “You mean the collar.” And then Aaron said, “Save the neck for me, Clark!” and I’ve decided that SALMON COLLAR should never be two words placed back to back.
Absolutely LOVE this market. Going back tonight for our last time waaaaaaah! And getting me a dang salmon collar. Ugh.
You might remember (from Instagram) that we went to Seaside the next day! I can imagine the charm it once possessed in its earlier years, because sooooo many of you reminisced on your childhood vacations. I wasn’t in LOVE with Seaside (it’s a bit rundown), but we sure did find a gem of a restaurant called Osprey Café. Off the beaten path, and not overflowing with tourists (besides me with my phone out all, OMG THIS IS THE ABSOLUTE CUTEST). You can tell it’s a local favorite. Just a darling little place with scrumptious grub. An absolute must if you ever make it to Seaside.
But we did feel the seals at the aquarium and ride the carousel! And by we I mean not me.
This is was another total highlight of our stay here. WE BOATED FOR CRABS. Actual crabs in the water that you pull up in a net and eat if it’s male and large enough. Complete craziness. And look, I’m holding a crab! I screamed the whole time.
I posted a whole slew of photos to Instagram, so I won’t torture you with double obnoxiousness, but look at this crab! We (and by we I mean Aaron and not me) caught one crab (he caught tons actually, but this was the only male that fit the scale for eating) and they boiled it, cleaned it and served it with SEA BUTTER (it’s an actual thing. I think she called it crab butter but I prefer sea butter), and we cracked our way into crab utopia for about an hour.
And Will even ate it! And LOVED IT. Nat’s our seafood lover, so for Will to excitedly crack open the shells and suck out the meat and ooooh and aaaahhh was an absolute shock.
The next day we spent in Astoria, which is just the cutest river town ever. Colorful houses stacked in the mountain side, the scent of coffee mixed with fish and chips, and HI THE GOONIES. (I swear some day I’ll stop talking about Goonies.)
Started at Street 14. Spacious, hip and bustling, I had a cappuccino with three vegan apple bites, and they even made Nat a tiny foamer for free! I call it a foamer at home. It’s frothed milk. But foamer is cuter.
Will was clearly thrilled about our impending plan to climb something like 876 steps to the top of the Astoria Column.
Here we are, about to climb to the top and throw our balsa wood planes off. Aaron took this photo and cropped the top of the column off, but I didn’t complain about it at all! (^^lies.)
So the kids didn’t make it.
I barely did.
I was determined to climb all 1,973 steps to the top and see OREGON, GOSH DARNIT.
And I did. I climbed all 8,734 steps and threw my plane off and took my photo. Nearly barfed, but I did it.
Then Aaron did! And we watched his balsa wood plane make it to Washington. Those things FLY, man.
When I got to the bottom of the 12,724 steps, I saw this painter painting his view, so I had to photograph it. A photograph of a painting of a view. I hope someone took a photo of me photographing this painting with a view. And maybe someone was drawing the photographer taking a photo of me taking a photo of the painting of a view.
After that, we made our way to Bowpicker for fish and chips!
Guys, I don’t think I’ve EVER had fish and chips. Maybe as a child? I can’t remember. And – are fish and chips places always in little boats or huts or trucks? I’m now obsessed with this whole fish and chips phenomenon. And yes I know it’s fish ‘n’ chips, but that’s hard to type! And my spacebar is stuck. How do I unstick it?
Oh, hi! Is that Linda?
CRISPY. Crunchy. Flakey. Not a hint of sog. And tuna! Absolute perfection.
Then we Goonies’d, obviously.
I wonder if Mikey’s dad is working today!
I was mildly freaking out. It’s the opening scene location!
YOU CAN JUST GO IN THERE. The whole place is now a museum of all kinds of movie relics shot in Oregon. Kindergarten Cop, Goonies, a few others. Nothing from Twilight that I saw. HOW DARE THEM. They. Whatever.
After buying little Goonies treasure boxes in the gift shop because that’s what you do, we hit up the local ice cream spot. Lots of you recommended Frite and Scoop, and it was delish! At least the kids said it was.
Yeah, it was.
Why is Oregon so pretty all the time?
Brewery time! We hit two of them, because yolo. And you all equally recommended these two spots. First up, Buoy. Which I pronouncing like, “Boiiiiiiii” and it didn’t drive Aaron bonkers at all.
Right on the water, beautiful views, incredible turmeric hummus, obsessed.
However, the sea lions had migrated south, so we didn’t get to see them through the glass floor. But the kids still bent down on all fours and put their faces on the dirty floor, so that was awesome! Ugh.
After that, Fort George. I liked the VIBE (hello, plants) of this place a little more than Buoy, but it’s a touch inland. Both really fabulous though. Kid-friendly, tall ceilings, bearded men everywhere.
Look at that chandelier!
And those plants in the back.
All you see is Nat’s visor, don’t you.
Cute place! A must.
OKAY WE TRIED. I feel like the house is riiiiight up and around that path. I wanted to walk up there and sneak a pic, but I was nervous about a SWAT team swooping in and locking me up for life.
But we did see this!
“IT’S NOT A TOOMAH.”
We also saw friends! When you’re on the complete other side of the country and you find out old Arkansas friends are also on the other side of the country, you carve out an afternoon to beach it at Twin Rocks while the gremlins play in tide pools whilst drinking beer and rosé. They played in the tide pools. We drank the beer and rosé.
Also, listen to what freaking happened. And I’ll make it fast because I know you all have lives.
Gina and I were standing together on the beach, watching our guys and kids play, when we noticed this major Big Lebowski-style dude walking toward us. Clearly beyond hammered. He stumbled up, shirtless (not, um, in a good way) with a plaid flannel wrapped around his waist, flinging a near-empty beer bottle around in the air. Aaron and Alex notice and start walking our way immediately. Long story long, he gets too close. He screams at us. He starts to walk away after we’re like, “Uh dude leave us alone.” He throws his bottle our way. He screams a nice strand of expletives while double birding us and stumbles down the beach. Aaron calls the cops! AND THEY ARREST HIM.
Although, we didn’t find out they arrested him until a handful of days later. But they came to the beach and discovered he’d been harassing people (and dogs, what?!) all day. So in jail he went. But probably not the Goonies jail.
The police officer took Aaron’s official statement to add to the report. Aaron’s basically A CRIME FIGHTER IN TILLAMOOK COUNTY, GUYS.
I also told you that story to distract you from the fact that I posted three Twin Rocks photos in a row.
Nehalem. It’s a neighboring town, just two miles from Manzanita, with one main strip of antique stores and restaurants. And I just think it’s so cute! I love TINY. And Nehalem is tiny.
Behind a string of shops lies Riverside Fish and Chips, an itty bitty boxy white truck that you order from and sit on picnic tables right by the water. Hi, adorable.
Compared to Bowpicker, these didn’t quite match the CRISPY CRUNCHY-NESS that we’d experienced, but they were also very, very good. Bigger fish pieces! Although it was cod. And I’m not a cod eater because of the worms. But I did enjoy it!
I’m trying not to sound snobby.
They were great!
Also, Buttercup is totally worth a stop. It’s strictly a chowder and ice cream shop, also darling in aesthetic. And the CHOWDER….
Curry. Green curry chowder. I’ll never be the same.
(and I desperately need that tray.)
Another place we visited was Short Sand Beach! Just a hop skip up the 101 (said like Fred Armisen in the Californians), it’s this unbelievably scenic surfer haven.
With all kinds of drift wood! Look at all that. It’s so Oregon.
It also has giant trees that you hug because that’s what you do with big trees.
This is me pretending to be a cool hiker while sitting on a log and charging my phone. #reallife
Aaron was like, “I can do that.” And I said, “Can you really?” And he said, “Sure!”
More on that soon.
And that’s a wrap of week two! (just one photo left, are you okay?)
A) Can’t get over that mountain.
B) Still have so much to share, but I value our relationship, so week three (with my in-laws) will come next week!
C) Headed to Portland tomorrow! If you’re in town, I’m having a meetup at Tope (top of Hoxton Hotel) from 4-6pm. I’d love to meet you! Come hang and have a rosé with me. I won’t bite.
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