|(5+1=6) + 0 = 60|
My mom Rhonda (or Ru to her friends and family) turned 60 on August 1st of this year. The kids and I surprised Grandma Ru during her lunch break at work with three balloons (one was a casualty of wind in the van – may it rest in peace), flowers and hand-made cards declaring their love for her. It was really more like “planned spontaneity” since Ru and I coordinated our schedules, but the kids thought they were surprising her.
|Nothing fancy about this party. All you need is love, right?|
Last year for Ru’s birthday, we had a Mom/Daughter day and spent the entire day hiking on Mt. Hood. It was such great fun that we decided it should become a yearly tradition. Saturday morning, Grant and I arrived at Ru and Terry’s house as close to “on time” as I’m capable of. Terry and Grant took off for some man time hiking in the Columbia River Gorge while Ru and I took off for the Grassy Knoll trailhead outside Carson, Washington.
We crossed the Bridge of the Gods and drove into Stevenson, a quaint little town on the Washington side of the Columbia River Gorge. We stumbled into Stevenson on the weekend of the town’s annual festival and about an hour before the festival’s parade started. People were lining the sidewalks of the three or four block downtown area, eagerly awaiting the start of the parade. I decided to be the first person in the parade, rolled down my window and drove slowly past the parade goers, honking and practicing my princess wave. Who knew my year as a Scio Lamb and Wool Fair princess would come in handy?
|Beautiful Mom on cliffs|
Eventually we reached the trailhead of Grassy Knoll. It was a much shorter hike than the one we tackled last year, but was billed as “strenuous” for its steep ascent. The trail gained over 2,000 vertical feet in just over two miles with no switchbacks. We took our time hiking and chatted it up once we acclimated to the steep climb. We stopped at some really cool cliffs half-way up the mountain for a snack break and photo op. Mt. Adams loomed across a vast sea of rolling foothills. We stood above the noise and chaos of daily life, wind in our hair on the edge of the cliff soaking in the view. It was glorious.
|Mom, trying to work my camera, ended up with this fun shot|
|on top of the bluff - see Mt. Hood peeking through?|
We reached the top of the Grassy Knoll too quickly. The hike wasn’t as hard as Ru had anticipated and we both wished it would have lasted longer. The knoll, known for its wildflowers in the early summer, was done blooming and was instead covered with dead grass. What the knoll lacked in flowers it made up for in the spectacular views. Mt. Hood played hide and seek with the clouds on one side of the knoll. Mt. Adams stood in brilliant sunshine on the other side. We took pictures and headed back down the mountain, stopping at our cliffs for lunch before heading back to the van.
|Me on top of the "Grassy" Knoll|
|love this picture of my Mom|
|outside the Ladies Bath House|
One of the many things I love about my Mom is her passion for life and her ability to laugh. She makes everything fun and our birthday celebration was no exception. Happy 60th birthday Mom! I sure do love you.