#coxesoutwest2015: Idaho

One of Dan’s closest friends lives in Idaho, and we had never been! Having relocated from Orange County California to Boise, we wanted to check in on him and see how life was in such a different place than where he was originally from. We made our way to Boise and settled in for a few days of fun with James. As you can see in the coming photos, both of them were super happy to see each other. #adorbs

We went on a really long drive one of the days we were there to see a glimpse of the Sawtooths. It takes a really long time to drive to them so it was a nature sightseeing adventure. Idaho is like heaven on earth for preppers, hunters, kayakers, hikers and people who want a slower pace of life. I completely understand the appeal. Every corner we drove around was more majestic views and miles and miles of wilderness. Dan is already planning a return trip for a manly hunting trip. (I’ll plan a girls trip to Palm Springs…)

One of the days we were in Idado was my Birthday! Dan and I spent the day together at one of the top tourist destinations on trip advisor for the area: The Old Idaho Penitentiary! I’d definitely recommend it, as weird as that sounds. Dan had the local grocery store make me a cake and I thought it was so sweet that he went out of his way to make my birthday special even though we were not at home. <3 My new Kendra Scott earrings didnt hurt either.

Idaho takeaways:

  • Idaho is BIG! We barely saw the place and we spent a lot of time checking it out.
  • Old friends are the greatest.
  • There are still places in Idaho that look like an old western movie. People live there and are still kinda wild west themselves! We got to one town, got out of our car, felt REALLY unwelcome, and left. Crazy right?
  • The potato thing is no joke.

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#Coxesoutwest2015: Oregon

Mt St Helens wore us out so¬†we stayed at a hotel an hour outside of Portland that night so we would be fresh for our trip into the city an onward. Our goal for the next couple of days was to road trip to Boise Idaho, seeing as much as possible along the way. We only had two days to make it to Idaho so it was a whirlwind. I think we needed at least a week but we didn’t have it. Neither¬†of us had ever been to Oregon so we were both pretty excited to see this new state.

We headed into Portland with three goals in mind, since we actually were only driving through. We wanted some Voodoo Donuts, Stumptown Coffee, and to see the Portland sign in the opening credits of “Portlandia.” Check check and check! Our first stop was donuts, obviously. We got there in the morning, and there was no line, which apparently is not always the case judging from the queue tape set up outside. I have to tell you, we got some wacky donuts that they are famous for but Dan and I both say that the glazed was where its at. It was SO “where its at” that I would go so far as to say its the best glazed donut Ive ever had. Ever. Next we google mapped a Stumptown Coffee shop and ended up at one that was attached to the Ace Hotel there. Yay! I always love to see the decor at those hotels, and this one was super hip. The photobooth was really neat because it printed out real film photos. They were WET when they came out. No digital printer here. We headed back to the car and drove past the sign.. and then straight out to the Columbia River Gorge. While we only spent about an hour in the city, I already knew that we would be back one day. We really liked it. We both agreed that if we ever moved out to the west coast, this was a contender for a landing spot.

The Columbia River Gorge was out of control gorgeous. It was almost horrible that we didnt have any time to check this place out other than pulling over twice to see Multnomah Falls and take a short hike. This is definitely a place we are going back to, with our tents and time. So so so stinkin pretty!!! Go here.

By the end of the day, we had made it through Hood River (Dan’s Favorite spot) and all the way to Bend. It really was painful passing through these places with no time to take them in. Dan was beside himself in Hood River because of all the water sports potential. SUP-ing,¬†kayaking, wind surfing, hiking, skiing, snowboarding… It was everything I could do to keep his mind off it enough to prevent us moving there immediately. My favorite thing about it was how happy he was there. Once we made it to Bend we were to tired to see much of it. All I remember is how sleepy the town was, how rude our dinner waiter was, and the amazing way the whole town smelled.

We got up, continuing on our road trip, and headed to the Painted Hills! Dan saw this spot online and we detoured to see it. It was quite incredible, and felt very forgotten. There was only one other person there for most of the time we were there. Kinda erie. I was impressed with how perfect it still was even though it was millions of years old. Thanks America for not screwing this place up.

A couple more hours of driving in the wild west, and we made it to Idaho.

Oregon Takeways:

  • It so Pacific Northwest-y until you get a couple hours away from Portland. Then it becomes the wild west. We were shocked at how cowboy it was! Shows how much we know.
  • I will go back to Portland and Hood River and The¬†Columbia River Gorge. They were all way more awesome than just a drive-by visit.
  • One of their main crops is Onions! I LOVE onions. Thanks Oregon.
  • Get the glazed donut at Voodoo. On second thought, get a dozen. I would literally pay someone to mail me a dozen, next day air. F’reals.

 

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#Coxesoutwest2015: Mt St Helens

After five days in Seattle, we headed south towards Mt. St. Helens. Dan’s brother William had visited the park a couple years ago and raved about so we made a detour to visit it while we were on the west coast. I am SO glad we did. This was easily one of my favorite parts of our whole trip.

The approach to the mountain is gorgeous. Its the land of Big Foot so that already got us excited. It’s also the longest dead-end road in the state of Washington, leading you right to the Ranger Station. It’s over an hour drive one way. You also get glimpses of the mountain along the way and it really did take my breath away. Its the only mountain we could see that had snow on it, which made it stand out. The other thing that shocked me was that it looked like a drawing of a volcano that a kid might draw: a mountain with the top missing.

We spend over 2 hours here, listening to the ranger talk, taking photos, reading the museum details, and just staring at it. It really is a sight to behold. The devastation, the¬†ever-changing crater, the re-birth…. it was all incredible.

Not to be missed.

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#Coxesoutwest2015: Seattle

This is the first of a couple of posts from our trip out west this past October/November. We were in Seattle for Meredith-Gray and Eric’s wedding , (coming to the blog soon) and we turned the trip into 2 week vacation, since we had another shoot in LA less than 14 days after the wedding.

Dan and I had never been to Seattle for more than a layover, so we wanted to hit the big stuff this time around. The first day we headed to the Public Market, the Gum Wall, the Great Wheel, and the first Starbucks. The next day we took it easy, just going to take a glance at Gig Harbor and then we headed to the Living Computer Museum like the nerds we are. That night we went to the Rehearsal Dinner as guests since it’s impossible to turn down pizza with old friends, obvi. Sunday was the wedding, which was killer. On our last day we went to the REI Flagship store and spent a ton of time trying to find Dan’s lost credit card. Thankfully someone found it, googled us since it says “Bethany and Dan Photography”, called us, and we were able to meet up and get it back. Thank you nice Seattle person! After that debacle we were a bit tired, but not tired enough to miss out on the EMP Museum. ¬†It was a whirlwind but in a really good way.

Now that we’ve done this highlight tour of the city, Im prepped for our return trip where we spend the entire time exploring the parks and waters. We didnt do ANY outdoor stuff because we didnt have any of our gear nor did we have the time to really do it right. We are most definitely going back for that. See you soon Olympic Peninsula and San Juan Islands! Mark my words!

Seattle takeaways:

  • It really is gray there. We only wore our sunglasses once for a couple of hours. It even rained on the wedding day, but that really felt kind appropriate for Seattle.
  • The public market is really fun! The flowers were overwhelmingly wonderful and I wanted them all. We caved and bought one that we use to decorate our AirBnB while we were there. Had to.
  • The Big wheel aint cheap, but it was really fun. I think it might have been better at night but we were to tired to wait until then so we did it during the day. Still cool, and no line.
  • Gum Wall? Gross. Seriously.
  • If I moved to Washington, I would move to Gig Harbor.
  • The first starbucks was worth the wait in my opinion, simply because I like being able to say to myself “Ive been there.” If thats not something you need, skip it.
  • Seattle is totally worth a visit.

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Life Lately List: December 14, 2015

The perfectionist in me is squirming a little bit, but the fact is that we missed our first Life Lately list since we started doing them in 2012. I guess that is a pretty good picture of what our life has been like lately??

So heres an update for you!

Since we last posted, we have done some big things:

  • We packed up our 6 month rental apartment in the West End of Portland, and put everything into storage.
  • We set up our winter camp here in the Outer Banks of NC, where we will be finishing the renovation on our trailer by the sea. We started this last year. You can follow along on instagram with the hashtag #redheadreno
  • We photographed our last wedding of 2015 and all the images are delivered. Now its time for all that stuff we didn’t have time to do this summer. Forward Progress my friends!
  • I miss lobster.
  • I lost over 25 lbs this summer and then re-gained a lot of it due to all the traveling. Excuses I know but Im bummed. Back to the grindstone now. Im kind happy to be staying put for a while so I can get back in the slow-carb groove.
  • We did a TON of traveling, both for work and also for our own exploring. Let’s see here: Seattle, Portland OR, Lots more of Oregon and Washington, Boise ID, LA, Palm Springs, NYC, and Gettysburg. Whew!¬†We are sharing the posts this week on the blog so settle in for a few travel pics in the coming days. By few I mean “way more than you probably want to see.”
  • It’s Christmas-time which is my absolute favorite. Despite the fact that all our holiday decor is in Maine in a storage unit, we found a teeny tiny tree to spruce up the trailer with. Did you catch that pun?? We also put up rainbow lights outside which is adorable.
  • I did a guest post on my friend Maeve’s blog The Wee Spoon. ¬†She’s precious and you need her in your life. For reals. Like go and subscribe to her blog right now. Ill wait.
  • Welcome back…
  • Hattie turned 5. I got all sad because her birthday makes me sad. Shes getting older! Thats not ok. I mean I want her to keep being a small wee pup forever.
  • I discovered Sudara Punjammies and now I live in them. Also, they are doing really really good things: “PUNJAMMIES‚ĄĘ are loungewear bottoms made with hope by women in India who have escaped human trafficking. Whenever you purchase PUNJAMMIES‚ĄĘ, you invest in the freedom and dignity of these women and girls who are working to forge a new life for themselves and their children.” Boom!
  • We are beginning a really exciting process of a complete branding overhaul! One of our brides is also a graphic designer. We hired her to brand our business, which will be the first time we have ever done this. We are nervous and excited and super curious as to what we will eventually decide on. Soak up the teal and white autograph logo because it’s going away soon. #wewillmissyou

What’s up with you guys??

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To stay up on our day to day, follow our personal instagrams:

@thebethanycox and @thedancox

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