Hello, hello! Happy Monday everyone! 
It’s been awhile! I ended up taking a little bit of an unexpected break from the blog last week. We got back from our long weekend in Bend, Oregon late last Monday and it seemed like the rest of the week just flew by. I was also struck by a few migraine headaches last week as well which made it pretty tough to even think about blogging. I have to be on the computer all day for work which tends to exacerbate my headaches, so I didn’t want to spend any extra time staring at my laptop last week! I pretty much laid around and watched the Olympics every night instead…and it was awesome.
But I’m back now! And I’ve got lots of great posts in store for you the next month. I seriously cannot believe it’s already August and that summer will be coming to a close soon. Don’t get me wrong, I love fall but I’m not in a rush for it to get here just yet. I want to savor these last few weeks leading up to Labor Day so look forward to lots of summer-y posts in the days to come!
But now for a recap of our trip to Bend!
Bend is a charming town in Central Oregon and if you ever have a chance to visit, I’d highly recommend it! It’s an absolutely gorgeous place…it kind of reminds me of a mix of Lake Tahoe and Colorado…but it also has its own unique vibe. Bend, like Tahoe, has great skiing, but also has great summers. Cam’s brother, sister-in-law, and our niece Alexa live there so we decided the end of July would be a perfect time for a visit! It’s about a seven hour drive from where we live, so Thursday after work we loaded up the Jeep and hit the road! 
(Excuse the MySpace-ness of this photo…I was trying to entertain myself while Cam got gas!)
 Friday, I worked from our hotel in the morning and then we headed out to lunch with Cam’s parents who drove in from Portland to meet us for the weekend. We went to 10 Barrel Brewing Co., one of the many awesome breweries in Bend. Their food and beer are both top-notch and it was great to sit outside and catch up with Cam’s parents!

And because what would one of my vacation posts be without Instagram photos of food? After lunch, we had the best cupcakes at Ida’s Cupcake Cafe. Seriously, I know cupcakes and these were good. The best part was they had a bunch of different cake and frosting flavors to choose from and you got to pick your own combo and they frosted it to order for you. Love that!

After lunch, we headed out to Sparks Lake to let Lola cool off and go for a little swim. Bend has a bunch of really beautiful lakes surrounded by mountains, so it was nice to spend some time on the water.

Broken Top

South Sister

Saturday morning, we had breakfast at one of my favorite places in Bend–Westside Bakery! They have this cinnamon roll french toast that is to die for.

After breakfast, we came back to the hotel to find Lola like this…

We spread her blanket over the bed for her to lay on, but she wasn’t having it. She is such a princess. 

Saturday post-breakfast consisted of the driving range (for Cam and his dad) and doing some shopping (for his mom and me). I neglected to take any pictures of downtown Bend, but really it’s really charming with lots of great shops and restaurants. Bend also has a great little outdoor mall called the Old Mill District that’s right on the Deschutes River. For lunch, we got to see our niece Alexa who is so much fun…and we went back to 10 Barrel Brewing Co. for a second day in a row. What can I say, it’s delicious!

It turns out that Alexa happens to like fro-yo just like her aunt so I insisted we get some after lunch…for her sake. So noble, I know. (And yes, I promise there is actually frozen yogurt under that giant pile of candy)

 We finished Saturday with a float down the Deschutes River in our tubes/kayaks. I love that Bend has so much to do!

Sunday, we had breakfast at the Original Pancake House and it was great because Cam’s brother Jordan was able to join us. Nothing better than family and pancakes.

After breakfast, we ended up going back to Sparks Lake for some more time on the water. My sister-in-law Aimee even brought her paddleboard along so Cam and I got to try stand-up paddleboarding for the first time. It was so much fun, and surprisingly I didn’t fall off. (Even though I felt like I was going to…it’s harder than it looks!) It was a gorgeous day and great to spend it with family!

Lola is just perpetually unsure of her surroundings
Justin on the paddleboard and Cam in the kayak
Cam trying out the paddleboard
Cam’s parents testing out our inflatable kayak
Lola in time-out because she was barking her face off

Not to be vain (ehh who are we kidding, this is my blog after all) but I kind of want to frame that last photo of myself…seriously, how freaking cool is that? Paddleboarding with the mountains in the background, it just doesn’t get better. Sometimes it’s still so surreal to me that I live in the West…and I love it. Overall, it was a wonderful trip to Bend even though we were only there for a few days. I hope we’ll get back again soon! Xoxo