It is incredible to think that Mikey and I have been married for 3 years already. Time with him seems to fly by, but when I look back on all the things we have done, places we have traveled to, friends we have made and animals we have shared our homes with, it makes me realize how jam-packed with good things our life has been. I am so happy to be able to do it all with him.
Mikey and I always take a trip to celebrate our anniversary; year one was to Japan and last year was a visit to Marfa, TX. This year we decided to celebrate our anniversary in Vancouver, BC, which was rather convenient when two of our pals, Gene and Liz decided to tie the knot in Oregon around the same time (August is the coolest month to get married, obviously.) Instead of a quick trip, we decided to take our time in the Pacific Northwest and make a road trip through Portland, OR, Sisters/Bend, OR, North Bend, WA, Seattle, WA and Vancouver. The Northwest is my absolute favorite part of the United States and I was thrilled to be able to share it with my guy.
Our first stop was Portland, OR, which I think is my new favorite city in America. I love the tall trees, fresh smells and good coffee. We have quite a few friends that live in PDX, and our pal and tour guide extraordinaire, Ana gave us a taste of all the best Portland has to offer.
We explored the city on foot in the morning, running down to Laurelhurst Park followed by a fantastic cup of coffee at Heart. After that, we had a giant brunch in Alberta and walked it off in the rose gardens and Cathedral Park. After a stop by Powell's Books and a little farmers market, we met all of our PDX pals for a great Cuban dinner. It was just about the most perfect day imaginable.
From Portland, we headed out to Sisters, OR, which is in the Deschutes National Forest, for our friends' wedding. The scenery was stunning and the weather was perfect. During the warm days, the air smelled like pine needles and berries and at night, the breeze was chilly and there was always a faint hint of campfire smoke. The trees seemed to scrape the clouds and the rivers and lakes were crystal clear and cold.
Look! I found a real Mirror Pond in Deschutes!
It was so nice to wake up in the mountains and hop into the lake for a quick morning swim or go for a run through the trees. I could have stayed there forever.
The wedding was absolutely stunning and we were so happy to see these two incredible people start their lives together.
And if you think that waterfall looks familiar, that's because Twin Peaks was filmed in North Bend (along with Northern Exposure in the next town over). I ran around North Bend like a fangirl, finding as many spots from the show as I could.
And OF COURSE we stopped at the RR Diner (now called Tweeds) for a damn fine cup of coffee and a piece of cherry pie.
After Mikey pried me and Marianna out of a hug long enough to get me in the car, we drove to our next stop, Canada! It's kind of silly that I have lived in the US most of my life and never visited Canada. I don't know what I was expecting exactly (moose, maple syrup, heavy breakfasts and flannel) but we were shocked to find an incredibly diverse and vibrant culture in Vancouver!
We had some of the best food of the trip in Vancouver. The PNW is teeming with good coffee, but I had one of the best cups in Vancouver, made with a 49th Parallel roast.
With Vancouver's huge Eastern population, we naturally had some incredible Asian food while we were there. We had crazy cheap and crazy delicious sushi and the best bowl of Thai curry noodles that I have ever had period. Even the noodles I had IN THAILAND were not as good as these noodles. We also did a bit of urban exploring through Stanley Park and the surrounding wooded areas in the city, hiking up to the top of Cleveland Dam and through the restaurants, shops and boutiques along Vancouver Harbor.
After a great few days in Canada, we had to head back home, but not before a quick stop in Seattle for lunch (and more hugs from Marianna) before we hopped back down to Portland to catch our flight.
This anniversary trip left me feeling all bubbly and warm, like I had just spent time at home, surrounded by people I love. In fact, I think Mikey and I might know more people in the PNW than we do in Dallas! It was an incredible trip and one that was very hard to return home from.
Who knows? Maybe one day we will be able to spend some more "permanent" time up there.
If you can handle more vacation pictures, you can see them all on my Flickr page.