Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Life in Eugene

We had many adventures in and around Eugene. Our days here consisted of lots of family time, good food, board games, walks, and more. We revisited an arcade/bar called Level Up with Mark, Kristin, and Michael and played silly games. I had to take this picture...

It has Benedict Cumberbatch's face on it. I must have a picture...

We played "Ticket to Ride" and "Pandemic" for the first time. Both board games were fun. Here is a picture of our outcome for "Ticket to Ride"--it was a pretty fierce competition:

We went on a bike ride which was fun. Kristin and Mark had several different bikes so we could borrow a couple. I got to borrow a Bike Friday bike. Sadly, there are a lot of problems with this particular bike (first and foremost for me was that the seat was so hard that my bottom was bruised, which is pretty horrible in so expensive a bike), but I loved riding it! It was very smooth and maneuverable. This particular model is older and is a fold-able bike with a sort of rubber belt instead of a chain (which I LOVE).

Here is a picture of me riding that Mark took. You can mostly see the bike.

For anyone interested, here is a link to the website: Bike Friday.

Kristin had a cool bike (actually everyone did, but this one was another favorite). It is called a Strada and is also a fold-able bike with a rubber belt instead of a chain. Her's was shaped like a triangle! But she let me try it out. It was super weird because you are very close to the handle bars. I felt a little wobbly on it, but it was VERY maneuverable. And the seat was a lot more comfortable. It was a cool bike. You can google images of these things.

We also went to an indoor archery range. It was super fun!

One of my favorite parts was the day trip that Isaac, Zea, Kyla, and I went on to Bandon, Oregon. There is a wild life park that houses many animals and breeds some for zoos. I felt a little skeptical about seeing the facilities, but it was very nice and the animals seemed well-cared for. The main reason we went is because they let you pet many of their animals and some of their babies and they had a baby black bear! I LOVE bears! As soon as Isaac heard that there was a baby bear, he knew I had to go!

So we had a mini road trip to the West Coast Game Park Safari. And they let you buy little ice cream cones filled with feed and there are lots of animals running around the area like goats, sheep, llamas, donkeys, deer, and some type of goat/small ram with big horns that butt you (which actually really hurts). Anyway, you can feed these animals. We also fed an emu (but not out or our hands--ouch!) and a couple peacocks and wallabies. The wallabies were super cute and gentle! They just licked the food out of your hand and their muzzles were SO soft!

Then we took the empty cones and fed them to the grown bears who sit or stand up and wave or clap! SO cute! I love bears. (I am not sure if there are really such things as spirit animals and such, but if there are, mine is, without a doubt, a bear. Probably a grizzly bear.)

Anyway, here are several pictures. Some are ones that I took and some are ones that Zea took because she had a nicer camera and one is from Isaac.
Todd the fox. He was very soft.
Zea and I petting the baby bear. I'm the one with the insane smile on my face. Taken by Isaac.

Kyla and I. I am still the one smiling like a crazy lady. Taken by Zea.
Trick bear!
Carl the Caracal. We got to pet him, too. Taken by Zea.

We also got to pet a baby lion. Taken by Zea.

And a baby tiger! Taken by Zea.

Yep, lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my!

On the fourth of July, we went to a local event called Art on the Vineyard. Which is kind of a silly name because it wasn't held at a vineyard, but at a park. There were several booths representing local wineries, though. There were tons of local (and non-local) artists displaying and selling their work. There was OK live music (none of us were much impressed with any of the artists/bands, sadly). There was plenty of food and dessert. We spend our evening eating and wandering and after dark there was a firework show.

Isaac celebrated his 30th birthday in Eugene. Michael and Mo hosted a birthday BBQ and there was lots of food, good company, and fun cupcakes afterwards.

We also visited a couple of local wineries. We started at Silvan Ridge which had several excellent wines and a beautiful setting.
Silvan Ridge

The view!

Then we went across the road to Sweet Cheeks Winery. They were super nice and had several interesting and good wines.They also had a great view.

This picture doesn't do the patio or the view justice, but it was the only one I got. And Aunt Kay is not drinking both of those, one is mine.

We went up to King Estate. They grow lavender, too, and you can smell it while you drive up to the main building. However, even the tastings were expensive, not to mention the food, so we didn't stay. I took a couple pictures though.

The main building from a distance.
Beautiful lavender
Otherwise we spent lots of time with family and ate lots of good food! We really enjoyed our trip! And thanks to everyone who made our stay so wonderful! And thanks to my momma for watching our plants and rats while we were gone!

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