monkeyinabox: look here....or you could just go through life and be happy anyway

the daily banana

Cake, Presents, Fresh Crab, Squeaky Cheese, Seriously, It's All Here


A sea chanty called...

The end of December was packed full of activities, holidays, food, travels and illness. Seriously, this month has mostly been full of recovery time. Let's get caught up.

After the Magnus birthday celebration, we only had a few days in Bend before heading out to Astoria. The next day (which was Magnus' actual birthday) was our early Christmas in Bend. Even though it involved more presents, Magnus didn't dig his birthday being all Christmassed up.

Xmas joy

At least the pumpkin pie made up for it.

Xmas joy

The following night, we had a nice dinner from theCascade Camera Club that was held at the Cascade Culinary Institute at COCC. A fine dinner and it wrapped up my two-year position on the Cascade Camera Club's board.

Our final departure task was to figure out a way to shove all of our luggage, items for Magnus, presents, and camera gear into the Accord, in addition to The Teacher, Magnus, myself and Amy (the dog). A full car indeed. The Teacher made some comment about my bulky camera backpack that occupied a large portion of the back seat. My 365 day project with Magnus and the monkeys was winding down, but it also meant our luggage had stuffed monkeys packed in it as well plus a couple of light stands and my big tripod in the trunk. Trust me, it was a full car.

En route, we made a stop in Scappoose to visit The Teacher's grandma : Grandma O. Simply put Grandma O is an amazing woman in her 90's. She practically runs up stairs like someone half her age. No fooling. She got a kick out of watching Magnus devour his dinner and did suggest we get a chicken to take with us to restaurants to clean up the mess on the floor. Not a bad idea.

Magnus and Grandma O

After dinner we finished up the drive to Astoria where we would be spending Christmas and New Years. It also meant getting to sleep on a queen size bed for a couple of weeks again (rather than our California King at home). For quite some time, when someone asked me how tall I am, I would reply 6'-8". The Teacher decided to help me verify this recently, but the tape didn't lie with 6'-10" being the real answer. Bad news for sleeping in queen sized beds indeed. Good news for The Teacher if she wants to wear really high-heels, even though she's 5'-11".

We arrived a few days before Christmas, so we had some time to rest and also time to wrap up last minute things. On December 23rd we didn't forget to put up the Festivus pole.


It also gave Magnus some time to catch up with some of his cousins (in the bath).

Bath time

Christmas Eve meant having everyone over at The Teacher's parents for a fresh crab dinner. This was the second time having crab with The Teacher and I still required some instructions on how to open the dang thing up. Seriously, those of us born in a desert do not have natural seafood instincts. I'm still learning.

After dinner is was present time for Magnus and his cousins. While it wasn't insane chaos, it was still chaos. No fights, so that was at least a good sign that no one was too miffed by anything they got. Magnus had a pretty good haul of loot. Of course the negative was that we were going to have to shove it back in the car for the return trip.

XMAS haul

Just when you thought the Magnus birthday celebrations were over, we had another in Astoria for his coastal family. Magnus' Uncle Matt baked up an amazing monkey cake for the event.

Monkey cake #2

Magnus once again knew what to do with cake: EAT IT!

Monkey cake #2

Before the end of the year, we did get to spend some time around Astoria, catching up with our favorite places to eat and sites to see. I did make a point to check out the recently burned Cannery Cafe and Number 10 Building.


A bummer indeed for those businesses. More of a positive note was I won the Daily Astorian's Coast Weekend photo contest while being in town. It was nice to see my image on the front page of the newspaper for two days in a row, as well as a nice feature section on Dec 30th. Not a bad thing, and it made going back to the Peter Iredale site another chance to get a nice photo (of us).

Peter Iredale

After a tame New Year's Eve, we headed out on New Year's Day for a cheesy adventure in Tillamook. The skies were clear, so it made for a nice drive. The only bummer was I was starting to come down with a head cold. Grrrrrr. Thankfully, I just got to sit back and relax in the car.

Off to Tillamook

Seriously, I did zero driving that day.

Off to Tillamook

Magnus helped out a little and we got there just fine.

Off to Tillamook

One bummer about it being New Year's Day was most of the production crew had the day off. That meant the awesome viewing area was somewhat boring.

Off to Tillamook

But, that didn't stop us from enjoying the cheeseburgers, cheese samples and fresh ice cream. Yummy, yummy and yummy (I wasn't that sick). Of course on the drive back to Astoria, I could tell my energy was draining fast. That meant missing out on one more family gathering and loading up on cold medicine for the drive home, simply put, because of our loading of the car, I was the required driver. Thankfully I wasn't feeling too bad and the drive home was easy.

Not a bad holiday, despite sleeping in a small bed and getting sick. Can't wait to do it again.

Posted by monkeyinabox ::: |


Kina said:

The Green Bay outfit Magnus is wearing just kills me! He's got such fashion sense.

He's looking like such a little man these days. Question: Did you give him a gavel to pound the monkey cake with? It looks like he's got a club of some sort in his right hand.

Gives a whole new definition to "pound cake".

monkeyinabox said:

It's his wooden hammer from one of his birthday presents. ;) He didn't pound the cake, but kept it close to ward off cake thieves.

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