Several years ago, our New Year’s tradition was to go camping. Yep, camping.  We’d stay someplace along the Oregon or Washington Coast because the weather is usually warmer at the Coast than it is at home- at least this time of year.

But one super nasty New Year’s weekend outside of Tillamook (at Barview to be more specific) changed all of that.  It was awful.  And that was the last time we braved mid-winter camping.  That was the change between 2005 & 2006.

The Tillamook Bar- looking between the two jetties

The following  year we saw that my parents’ condo was available in Rockaway, so we stayed there for the extended weekend- it was warm and dry, and the kids agreed it was much more enjoyable than outdoor middle-of-winter camping. 

And for the next few years we watched the calendar and if the condo was available, we’d go!   Except last year, when we stayed home and tackled the redecorating of two bedrooms.  You can read that post here.

Anyway- once again we spent our New Year’s weekend in Rockaway!  And this time it was a perfect weekend.

For one- the weather was surprisingly beautiful, sunny, and calm.  It was enjoyable to walk on the beach.  No biting cold winds blowing sand in your face.  It was cold- only 45-55 degrees in the afternoons, but with the sun shining on your layers of clothing, it was perfect.  The kids (and Jim) claimed to be just fine wearing their hoodies (and NOT their winter coats).

The first full day there we walked South to the Twin Rocks.  Our goal was to find a playground that we stumbled upon about 3 1/2 years prior.  No luck. 

We found a jellyfish:

And Trevor took this picture of Jim and I:

The second day we tried again, and to make it more fun we took the boys’ (Jim & Trevor’s) new RC car with us.  A water resistant virtually indestructable Traxxas Slash.  Anyway, they took turns driving it across the sand.  We fully charged both batteries, knowing it would probably burn one on the way down the beach and the second on the way back!

Here they are having fun with the car:

And we found the playground this time.  Turns out we only needed to go about a block farther!  Oopsie.  But now we know where it is.  It’s just barely on the other side of the Twin Rocks. 

The playground is at the Ocean Rogue Inn which looks like a very family (and pet) friendly place.  Maybe we’ll have to try it out sometime.

Here’s the view from the Inn:

The view from the Ocean Rogue Inn

The girls had fun playing on the playground:

Trevor and Jim enjoyed a game of horseshoes:

A quick photo op before we head back to the condo:

Whoopsie…guess I didn’t get one of me and Brooke!

Well, here’s one of Brooke being silly:

But first Trevor wants to show you his RC car:

A great highlight to the weekend was the Emily G. Reed Shipwreck.  Remnants of the ship have been uncovered and it’s quite a sight to see. 

Apparently everyone else thinks so, too, because the beach has been much more crowded than I’ve ever seen it.

Well, besides 4th of July crowding.  That looks like this:

But back to the shipwreck.  You can read the history here.

This is how the shipwreck looked New Year’s weekend:

When I was taking these pictures, a camera-man from Koin 6 was filming and asked us if we wanted to be interviewed.  We declined.  He took some candid video of us walking around the shipwreck but I don’t think they ever aired the piece.  But I found it online!  We are seen at 1:28 into the video:

And this pretty much concludes how our New Year’s 2011 weekend went!  Enjoy this sunset!

And who says three kids can’t share a bed?  This is how we found the kids the morning of the 1st:

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