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I’m a blogger.  You’re a blogger.  We’re all bloggers.  Or, at least, a blog reader.  It’s not always fun or easy to keep writing and posting things that you only hope people want to read or see.  It’s time-consuming, but can also be thearaputic.  
In any event, I thought I’d pass along some blogs and websites that you can surf by while trying to look busy at your desk 🙂  Yeah, you know what I mean.  Get clickin’.

 JeremyHanlon.com – foodies rejoice

MontanaPhoto.com photo lovers smile

Florida Girl in Sydney – shout out to the expat

Renee Claire  she’s trying to save the world, what are you doing?

On Call- Pet Services – animal lovers unite (particularly if you’re in Portland)

Mangopunch – straight from the ATL…for now

When was the last time you did 26.2 of…anything?!  Ummm…yeah.  Well, try RUNNING 26.2 MILES.  Wow…I just got winded typing that out.  Seriously, 26.2 miles.  I don’t even like to DRIVE 26.2 miles, let alone cover that amount of ground by foot. 

I guess that’s why I didn’t run a marathon this weekend.

But, my brother, CK2, did!!  That’s so awesome, and I want to give him a little shout out here!  He has been very dedicated – training for months (5 mile runs, then 10, a half-marathon, a 20-mile run…) – and his efforts finally culminated this weekend as he ran his first marathon – the Portland Marathon, which for the last decade has been ranked in the top 15 for best marathons in the country

In fact, between “Marathon” and “Crossfit,” my brothers are really making my exercising efforts pale in comparison.  I guess that’s what older brothers are for, huh?! 

If you see this guy on the streets of Portland, give him a high five:

Now that I actually have more than five minutes to type something, here I go….

The last year has been quite a journey. We had the chance to visit 3 countries (AU, NZ, USA), and traveled over 5,000 miles through 12 states (OR, WA, CA, NE, UT, AZ, NM, TX, OK, AR, TN, GA) in the USA. For part of the drive we were on the historical Route 66, which was pretty cool. What’s more, we had the chance to visit with 6 family members and 4 friends in different cities and states, attend a bachelorette party and spot 3 celebrities (kind of!).

All in all, it’s been crazytown, and we’ve loved every second of it!

For your reading enjoyment, some stats of our USA trip:

Start: April 13 – Portland, OR – 76,037 odometer
April 17 – Redwood National Park – 76,810
April 18 – San Francisco, CA – 77,140
April 22 – Joshua Tree National Park – 77,717
April 23 – Zion National Park – 77,907
April 28 – Petrified Forest National Park – 78,613
April 30 – Tennessee border – 79,897
End: May 04 – Palm City, FL – 81,331

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Many people have also asked us about petrol prices, so here are some we saw:

Crescent City, CA (northern CA) – $3.99
San Francisco, CA – $4.05
Amboy, CA – $4.49 (OK, this place was in the middle of nowhere in the desert!)
Zion, UT – $3.62
Gallup, NM – $3.47
Bushland, TX – $3.55 (Bushland…haha!)
Valdosta, GA – $3.59
Jacksonville, FL – $3.57

(All I have to say is, Can I get a bike!?)

—————-
Some notes I made on the road:

“Eugene, OR area. Sheep galore. Green. Beautiful.”

“Drive to Joshua Tree – traffic on 60 East. Suburbia. Plaza after plaza, then totally different terrain. Dry. Wind farms. Twentynine Palm Highway. Morongo Valley, ‘Dig Your Own Cactus $0.59.’ Brown. No grass.”

“NM to TX. Bushland, TX. Cows. Smelly dead horse. Amarillo, TX. Steaks. Largest cross in the Western Hemisphere. Boring. Oklahoma. Windy! ‘Vote Democratic‘ billboard. Lots of cops.”

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Anywho, it feels good to be back in Florida. We’re still constantly pondering whether this will be the right move for us, but for now, it seems to be. It’s comforting and exciting to know that we’re in driving distance to some of our closest friends and family, and I love the fact that I’m in the same time zone as most of my friends!

So, what do we do next? Well, I guess it’s time to plan a wedding!

While we may not be the most efficient or tidy campers out there, we’ve certainly picked the best time to give camping a go. Most of the parks we’ve visited haven’t been very busy, and the same goes for the campsites. From what we hear, it starts to get hella busy at the parks around Memorial Day weekend. In fact, the busiest parks we have visited were the two of the most popular parks in the United States – Grand Canyon (about 4 million visitors a year) and Zion (about 2.7 million a year).

We’ve camped in both basic campgrounds and RV parks. Our first stop in Roseburg, Oregon was at a RV park and it had electric and water hook ups. Next, at Redwood National Park, we got a $20 campsite by the river, flush toilets and showers; but, no electricity or water. In Joshua Tree, we paid $10 for a campsite that had a fire pit and picnic table, and a toilet (read: hole in the ground) across the way and no showers. During our stay at Zion, we hit up both a campground and RV park.

Camping is what camping is. And so far, it’s been fun and an experience. It takes a lot of teamwork and communication, and above all, as Chris Rock said once, “Sometimes you just gotta let shit slide!” I mean, there were nights when we were so tired that showering was arduous; there were mornings it was too cold to make a real brekkie; and, there were days (everyday!) we didn’t want to do dishes.

All in all, though, I guess those are the things that make camping.

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