The Fulfillment Series

The Fulfillment Series

Monday, August 27, 2018

Rhew The Nation -- The Pacific Northwest -- Part 2

So, quick recap, Deek and I traveled clear across the country, nearly from sea to shining sea. We stopped for a week in the gorgeous PNW to visit with family and friends. Deek's thoughtful parents decided to take us to several touristy places we missed while we lived in the PNW.

We made it to Mt. St. Helen when we lived there,
 but Deek had never gone until he took me!

It's funny. When you live somewhere, you think you have all this time to do and see all your local stuff. But then you move, and you realize there's *so* much you didn't do. It's interesting for me to return back to my home in the South and realize there's tons of things I haven't done here. Deek and I are slowly working down that list so we don't get to the vagabond stage of our lives and realize we missed a bunch of stuff right in this general area. ;)

And we've been to DC, which is a short train ride up the East Coast.
We want to take Deek's parents here though 
because they've never been (and his dad is retired military!)

So, even though Deek's parents were on a quest to take us to visit the new and unseen, we did spend a day in touring our old haunts in Portland. You can't go to the PNW without visiting Portland. <3

First, they took us the Pittock Mansion, which I had never been to.

Um, wow.
Although, I do prefer our small townhome...just sayin'. 

Dude! This view!! <3

The regular folk have ceilings... ;) 

The view from the kitchen! Whoa!

Then, we drove down the mountain into the heart of the city.

A must-see in Portland, always.
Especially for two authors!

No trip is complete without Voodoo Donuts!

Coffin of donuts, anyone?

And we took in the sights at Pioneer Place.
This shirt is everything.


I loved it when Deek did it, but I SO loved when his mom did!
Such fun! <3

Sellwood Bridge
Deek and I went to the grand opening of the new one several years ago.

And, as with most new bridge openings, someone drove into the bike lane...

Me and Deek watching the Willamette. 
That's Will-am-it, not Willa-met-tee, for those who "ain't from around here."

The next day, his parents took us to the Japanese Gardens, a place I've never been to and where Deek hasn't been since the remodel. Parking is a nightmare up there, and some jerk weasel tried to park in a non-space behind us. In his haste, he bumped into our car. I leapt out and gave him the what-for because my *family* was in there!! He stupidly said, "Did I hit your car?" DUH! If you can't tell that, you shouldn't be operating a vehicle. Anyhoo, no damage to our car, but he got back in his and stayed there until we'd walked far, far away. Don't mess with Southern girls and their people. We are very family-centric and fiercely protective of our own! ;) 

And, did I mention he parked in a pedestrian crosswalk (a HUGE no-no in pedestrian loving Portland) and got towed off? Yeah and yeah. Boom-shaka-laka. 

After a stressful start, we throughly needed and 
enjoyed the zen-like nature of the Japanese Gardens.
With more gorgeous views!

Up next, join Deek, his parents, and me as we take a ride down the Columbia on a riverboat brunch cruise!

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Rhew The Nation -- The Pacific Northwest -- Part 1

So, Deek and I traveled across the country, almost literally from sea to shining sea. But we stopped our travels to hang out for a week in the gorgeous Pacific Northwest and visit with family and friends. We used to live there, and while we love our life in the South, we do miss so very many things about the PNW.

Like family! <3
Deek has the most amazing parents, and I'm so blessed to be part of their family!

Like friends!
I adore Christine's whole vibe--just a super cool person all around! <3

Like Portland.
I *really* love Portland.

We arrived at night and immediately went to eat at Deek's favorite restaurant. We'd saved our keto high carb day especially for that place!

He may be a little excited! LOL!

The next day, we decided to explore our little town to see what had changed since we lived there. In the two years since we lived there, several different places have come and gone--some for the betterment of the town and some not. And while we were out, we *had* to eat at our favorite Chinese joint. We've tried and tried to find Schezuan beef as good as this in the South, but we have not been able to. :(  

After two years of waiting...

Of course we got Dutch Bros! 
Come to the East Coast, please!!

And we took a little boat ride.
The PNW has lots of water! ;) 

The next day was the 4th of July! It's the second year in a row we've spent the 4th with Deek's parents, despite living 3,000 miles apart!! How cool is that?!?

Deek and his dad. Love these two awesome guys!

Waiting for the parade!

Holy crow! Our little town has grown a lot!
We could hardly walk through the festival because the streets were *so* crowded!

This is how I always look at this man--with complete adoration!
I am the luckiest woman in the world! <3

And...there's a theme.

I so love Dutch Bros!


The next day, Deek's parents took us on the OMSI jet boat ride in downtown Portland. They wanted to take us to the touristy places we never got around to going to when we lived in the PNW. OMG, we had such a good time!!

Ready to ride!

Got a little wet.

I'm glad I brought a sweater because even though it was mid-summer, it was cold on the water!
I'll be honest, it's something I've never been able to get used to about the PNW. I'm a Southern girl, and it's always hot in the summer. I mean, you might as well walk around on the face of the sun. If you take a boat ride, even the wind it generates is hot. So, this coolness at the beaches and on the water in the PNW throws my mind for a loop. I can't quite wrap my brain around it or get used to it. Who brings a coat to the beach in the summer? Even in a swimsuit, you're likely to burn the blazes up on a Southern beach in the summer. ;) 

Someone's engine caught on fire, so our jet boat became a rescue ship! 
Our captain paused the tour/adventure to tow the man and his family back to shore. 
We were glad to be of assistance!

Now we're getting soaked!
My favorite part of this picture is Deek's mom's smile. Makes my heart so happy! <3

Why did I bother to fix my hair?? Haha!

Speaking of hair, after the jet boat ride, we headed on over to get my hair dyed. We had a blast chatting it up with "Hair Chick," as we call her, and I walked away with awesome purpliness!

Sporting the purple look again!

Stay tuned! We had plenty more adventures in the PNW before we headed back to the East Coast via the southern route!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Rhew The Nation -- Days 3, 4, and 5

Welcome back to our Rhew The Nation road trip! I'm photo blogging our trip across the country, complete with Shakespeare! Here's what I've discussed so far: how to keto on the road, how to organize your car for a cross-country trip, and Days 1 & 2 of the trip.

Sit back, grab some tea or coffee, and enjoy this next part of the adventure with us!

Day 3 (Missouri, Iowa, South Dakota)

Coolest decor at the Stoney Creek Hotel and Conference Center in Independence, MO!

Gus is ready for another adventure!

Since Missouri and Iowa did not give ample warning for us to catch the Welcome To Iowa sign, we had to improvise...

This sexy man is walking toward me, to get in my car and adventure with me!
Whew, I'm a lucky lady! <3

South Dakota!

Let me just say, South Dakota is awesome! A lot of times, you learn about a place in school or see it on a map, and you wonder what's there. Well, I didn't think much besides Mt. Rushmore resided in South Dakota, but there is SO much to see and do there. TOTALLY cool place! Deek and I have decided to take a trip back and spend a week just in SD! Check it out if you get the chance!

This gorgeous Dignity statue is at a rest stop!

I love when towns own what they are! Yas to this themed gas station!

For about 500 miles, we saw signs for Wall Drug in Wall, SD. The signs were campy and adorable, so we knew we had to stop there. It did *not* disappoint.

Wyatt Earp!
 I'll see him again later in the trip when we go to Tombstone, AZ!

They have dinosaurs in Wall, SD!

Wall Drug has so many things to see and do (and eat), and it's a totally sweet success story too! 
Definitely put it on your "must see" list!

We made it to Mt. Rushmore!

Obviously, summer is the busiest time of year for Mt. Rushmore, but Deek and I discovered a little secret. If you go at night, when it's raining, you practically get the place to yourself. Since, we lived in the PNW, a little rain doesn't bother us, but it keeps a lot of other people away. The more Rushmore for us then! We went all over the place, giggling and having a great time. It's a little creepy-cool to be two of only a handful of people in a huge national monument at night!

I SO love adventuring with my best friend! He makes every moment fun!

Y'all, I was excited to be there! I've read about Mt. Rushmore my whole life, but for a long, long time, I never really believed I'd actually get to see it. 
It was awe-inspiring! <3

Gawd! My husband is dreamy!

Day 4 (South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana)

One of our critique partners, Meradeth Houston, lives in Montana, and we were planning to stay in her town for the evening. But since I knew we'd be in really late and she works a regular job, I didn't think we'd get to see her. BUT when I contacted her, she said she would totally love to see us no matter the hour, and we planned to meet up for a late dinner. We've worked with Meradeth for years, so it was SUPER amazing to finally meet her in person! She's awesome online and in person, in case you're wondering!

The Presidents in the daytime.

Deek tried this coffee and said it *is* good!

We went to the Crazy Horse memorial. It's not finished yet.

What it will look like completed. Wow!

Crazy Woman Creek. Haha!

Can't read it very well, but this is the Montana sign!

Holy crap! Erin might just stay in the car!

Late night dinner and laughs with the lovely Meradeth Houston!!

Day 4 (Montana, Idaho, PNW)

Montana has the most adorable little squirrels. They're much fatter and furrier than the ones here on the East Coast. They'll walk right up to you and eat food from your hand.

But I found out why they need all that fur! In the beginning of July, at noon, it was only 58 degrees! This Southern girl froze her buns off!

Washington was the only state to have the welcome sign on the left side of the road!

Bridges and wind know you're in the west now!

We made it to our destination, and Deek got to eat dinner at his favorite restaurant!!

Thanks for joining us on the first leg of this cross-country trip! Stay tuned for the next post about our adventures in the Pacific Northwest!