This week we explored our 41st National Park together. I can’t believe there are only 18 National Parks that John and I have not visited together. So crazy to think about! Thankfully there are 417 total National Park properties so we won’t run out of places to explore anytime soon.
Crater Lake National Park was the perfect quick weekend escape that we needed. We cashed in some Alaska Airlines miles and were able to fly into Medford, Oregon which is only about an hour and a half from Crater Lake NPS. We picked up In and Out for lunch which made John crazy happy and headed to the park. Oh my goodness, it is so beautiful. I remember visiting Crater Lake NP as a kid and being in awe of the color of the lake. As an adult, it still took my breath away. When you turn that first corner and see a glimpse of the lake you really can’t believe that it is real.
Even in mid-July, part of the park was still closed due to snow on the roads. We were able to explore 2/3 of the drive around the lake before we had to turn around. This year they received a record 48 feet of snow at the lake. One of the employees told us there was so much snow this winter that they were only able to see the lake 20% of the time due to snow drifts. Now I really want to visit in the winter and see all of the snow. It sounds so beautiful.
I also really want to stay at Crater Lake Lodge soon. WOW! The views from the lodge are hard to describe. You can order a glass of wine and sit on the deck watching the sun go down. Yes please! I can’t imagine waking up to looking out over the lake and just soaking it all in. Talk about pure relaxation and peace.
We are already looking at our calendar and thinking about heading back to Crater Lake soon. We loved it that much. It was such a quick and easy flight from Spokane on Alaska Air. A quick layover in Seattle for breakfast and we were in Medford before noon.
I realized on our flight to Medford that I was quoted in the Alaska Air magazine. This is a total secret life goal achieved. We were on the 5 am flight and everyone around me was asleep. I had to bite my lip to stop my self from squealing with excitement. You all know how much I love Alaska Air and try to fly them every chance I get. Seeing my name in the magazine was a total dream come true. Want to know my next secret dream….I want to have a photo shared on the last page of the magazine. How cool would that be!!!!
You know how I have been gutting our house. Well, this week I attacked photos which is not something I ever thought I would do. I realized that I had 8+ giant plastic boxes of photos in our closet and no clue what was really in there. I went photo by photo and decided which ones I would keep and which ones needed to go.
I found photos from my 8th grade trip to Washington DC that were blurry and you couldn’t even tell it was the White House I was taking pics of. Why in the world have I held onto these for more years than I really want to count? Ok, I counted and it has been 27+ years since this trip and I have been moving blurry pictures with me each time I move or re-arrange the house. I just can’t deal with the idea of having this kind of stuff cluttering our house and taking up mental space.
I threw out a few thousand blurry photos and it felt so good. Don’t worry I kept the ones that made me happy and now I can easily look through them and find the ones I need. The pic above is from when I worked at Walt Disney World after college and my roommate/great friend Ingrid and I explored Epcot in a huge rainstorm. This pic makes me smile and definitely stays in the boxes.
There were a ton of pictures that were great but I didn’t need multiple copies of them. These were sent out to friends and family that were in the pics. Hopefully these surprise picture packages will bring a ton of people joy this week.
As you read this I am on a flight to Costa Rica for a dream trip! I am spending the week living Pura Vida Life! We are exploring a couple of dream destinations including Manuel Antonio National Park, taking a mangrove boat tour, catamaran sailing and taking salsa dancing lessons! EEK! I am so crazy beyond excited! Bring on the birds, monkeys, sloths and gorgeous scenery.
Keep an eye out on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for updates during the week. I am hoping to have a ton of killer photos to share!
I hope you have a truly amazing week!