Oregon Trip Recap

I think I was more excited to go to Oregon this summer than I possibly have ever been. Just the thought of introducing someone to the people I love and showing them where I’m from and all of the places I love to go made me giddy. I had no clue just how amazing the trip would turn out to be!


We left San Diego on Tuesday afternoon and arrived in Portland at around 6. As soon as we landed I called Makenna and she said that she and my mom were stuck in traffic, but would be there soon. I didn’t care…we were in Portland! After waiting for maybe 10 minutes, we saw my parents and Makenna walking up. Yay! My mom had arrived in Portland a few days before and my dad’s flight came in right before ours.

Makenna made plans for us to go to Helvetia Tavern, one of our fave restaurants, later that night. We went to her house, dropped off our stuff and she showed me “a few things in her room.” I say it like that because there was really something else going on that I was clueless about. Makenna was just distracting me so that my mom could give Van the ring. Sneaky sneaky!

Arriving at Helvetia and the proposal followed. It was truly a magical evening that I will never ever forget. I woke up that morning with a boyfriend and went to bed with a ring on my finger! Wow!


Ashley and her mom came over in the morning and we hung out for a little while before going to lunch at Juan Colorado, another traditional eating locale. Wedding dress shopping was next on the agenda (for Ashley) so Van decided to stay at Makenna’s. She had school that day so she had to join us later. We had a great time watching Ashley try on dresses and find the style that she liked best. I’d never experienced this before, so it was a great trial run before I started looking.

That night we had the annual Billings BBQ (Cookout for all you Southerners) and so many friends came. We all ate way too much, but had so much fun catching up with old friends. By far one of my favorite things ever.


Our friend got us into the Nike Employee store on Thursday morning and it was fun to see Van’s excitement and appreciation for that. He found some super soft workout shorts and I found some super comfy flip flops. We could’ve bought lots more, but we behaved ourselves.

After the Nike store we met up with my good friend Kelsey at Starbucks. We have been friends for SO long. I loved being able to catch up! She even bought me a wedding planning book! Aww!

We headed on to the beach (Grandma’s house) from there. Of course we stopped at Dairy Queen on the way. Another yearly tradition. It’s pretty much in the middle of nowhere and really you just have to stop. I always get a small vanilla chocolate dipped cone. Mom gets a medium chocolate cone. And Derek a large swirl. This was one another part of the trip where I really missed Derek. Sad! Van seemed to be ok with this tradition and enjoyed a Blizzard. Dad also didn’t complain as he ate his cone.

Grandma wasn’t home when we arrived, so we just unloaded the car and I gave Van the grand tour. Van and I walked down to Uncle Jeff’s house to borrow the bikes. Kim was there working on dinner for that night and I got to show off my ring. I loved how excited she was! After chatting for a bit, we took off with the bikes and rode around downtown Seaside and on the prom. Oh the memories! Grandma got home a little bit after we did and I was so excited to see her. Jenni also stopped by to drop off some treats. She was such a happy and calm bride-to-be! Later that night we (My fam, Van and Gma) went over to Kim and Jeff’s for dinner. Now this is something you ALWAYS look forward to. Kim is a fabulous cook and she did not disappoint! We had crab legs and smoked salmon spread for appetizers and oysters and more salmon for dinner. YUM! They also had champagne and we toasted our engagement! Aww! Kim’s a stewardess so for dessert we had those little spiced cookies that they serve on the planes. Too funny!

Makenna had class the next day at a place near the beach so she came and spent the night! She got to enjoy some time with us at dinner and then we just hung out for a bit when we got back to Grandma’s. I’ll take as much time as I can get…especially on such a short trip!


This morning while we were eating breakfast, my cell phone rang. This could only mean ONE thing if it was an unknown number in Charlotte: it was a call about the job I had been interviewing for. I was ECSTATIC when my boss-to-be said that she would like to offer me the job! What an amazing week!! I still can’t even believe that so many wonderful things happened in one short little week! WOW!

After all of the excitement, we all played tourist in downtown Seaside in the early afternoon. Van got to experience Fascination for the first time. We can’t go to Oregon without playing that game…especially during the 12 for $1 special. Gets me every time. Van and I also played in the arcade for a little while and became obsessed with Deal or No Deal. So fun!

The rest of the afternoon was spent relaxing before we headed off to the rehearsal dinner party at my Aunt’s house. We got to see more family there and it was so crazy being able to introduce Van as my fiance. At that point I was still mildly in shock! My cousin Kaiden was adorable when we walked up. She said my name right away (she’s 5 and I haven’t seen her in a year) and then she yelled “Uncle Preston!” Van and my cousin Preston both don’t have a lot of hair and she saw Van and thought he was Preston. Ok. It was funny to us! The rest of the night was spent hanging out with family and laughing.


On Saturday morning my parents friends Nigel & Keri came to my Grandma’s house for breakfast. Nigel is Brittish and i just love listening to him talk. We hung out for the majority of the day and then headed to Astoria for the wedding.

Sadly, it was foggy and misting so they didn’t have the wedding at the Astoria Column like they had planned. Instead the wedding was at the reception site and it was still just as beautiful! Congrats Preston & Jenni!

We had a great time at the wedding and I loved showing off my future husband! I was able to catch up with a lot of family and really enjoyed the evening. Sadly this was our last night in Oregon 😦


We got up pretty early to head to the airport. Mom was staying for another two weeks, but she and Grandma drove us to Portland. I hated saying goodbye and leaving after such a SHORT trip, but I know I’ll be back. Especially since Van loves flying and has caught the travel bug! Woohoo!! Can’t wait for next year!


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