My Daybook :: March 24th, 2013

by | Mar 27, 2013 | Daybook, Happy Birthday, Pacific Ocean, Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures | 23 comments

We just got home last night from spending one night and two beautiful days at the coast to celebrate Sean’s 40th birthday!  I started writing this post at the hotel but never did get around to adding pictures and posting. Now to finish unpacking, start the laundry, and finish our Spring Cleaning before the Triduum begins. I hope you all have a very blessed Holy Week!

Outside my the hotel window… 
we can see the Pacific Ocean!

I am thankful… 
that we were able to plan a last minute mini-vacation to celebrate Sean’s 40th birthday!  He had made me promise to not plan a party for him, but on Saturday morning when I suggested a drive to the coast to attend the Latin Mass for his birthday/Palm Sunday, he thought that sounded perfect!  Even though it is Spring Break we were still able to reserve a Family size Room at a hotel for Sunday night, so once again we had to leave the house bright and early to make it to the 8am Mass over two hours away!

I am thinking…        
about getting older, and how fast the years are passing… Aren’t we still in our 20’s?!  On the drive over to the coast I kept teasing my husband…

“Road signs sure take on a whole new meaning when you hit these milestone birthdays – like turning 40 – don’t they?!” 
… and while driving through the amazing, gorgeous, and ancient Redwoods… 
“Forty really isn’t that old… If you are a tree!”
I know… It won’t be long before I am going to regret teasing him about turning 40! And our children have already picked up my sense of “humor.”  On my last birthday Captain said, “Mom! Now that you are 35, when you round you have to round to forty instead of thirty!”  No more Math lessons for that boy… 😉

Learning all the time 
After Mass we took Father out to breakfast and then we drove down to the harbor before heading north to our hotel. I asked Sean to swing back around so I could snap a picture of the Coast Guard Ship. I never did get that picture, since we got a little distracted by all these sea lions and fur seals!

Don’t let the pictures fool you… These Sea Lions stink!
As we drove away we overheard Snuggles say “That almost made me throw up!”  

Celebrating the liturgical year 
It was so nice to attend a Latin Mass on Palm Sunday!  Father even asked the boys to serve. There was a visiting priest as well, who offered confessions after Mass.  I’ve been extra overwhelmed lately and was very happy to be able to go to confession one more time before Easter.  I also loved the penance he gave me: “Give hugs to four of your children and tell them that you love them!”

It was the perfect day to sneak in lots of hugs!

From the kitchen… 
To keep the cost of our trip to a minimum we avoided eating out for the most part.   I had packed water bottles, juice boxes, peanut butter/jelly/bread, snacks, muffins and oatmeal and then we picked up some fresh fruit and a birthday cake at the grocery store once we arrived.  We did pick up a pizza to take back to the hotel room for dinner – half BBQ chicken and half Garlic chicken, as requested by the “birthday boy.”  

I didn’t think about how much smoke those 40 candles were going to create… I’m just thankful that we didn’t set off the fire alarm in the hotel. That could have been really bad! 😉

I am working on… 
strengthening my lungs again after that awful cold! It was so heavenly to be able to go for a run on the beach with my husband!  We snapped a couple pictures during a break at the tide pools during low tide.


I am creating… 
a check list for Easter!  I picked up a couple other small items at the gift shop across the street from the hotel for Easter (a red dragon for Snuggles, since it goes so well with his Knight themed books, along with some cute little purse size note pads with butterflies and peacocks on the cover for the girls) and also ordered one more book for Rascal since one of his books is on backorder.  I’ve also been making a grocery list and I think our Easter dinner will be pretty similar to last year.

I am hoping… 
that the kids are all healthy again by Easter. Some of them are still coughing pretty badly, especially at night, but I think we are finally reaching the end of this virus.

I am praying… 
for a special intention.

I am reading… 
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to the children. We have never let them watch the movie  (and don’t plan to) but they have been captivated by the story and keep begging for more.  Even little Rose keeps asking for “just one more chapter!”  Twinkle Toes forgot to bring a book on the trip so she has started over at the beginning to read it again.

Pondering these words…
from my page a day calendar.  How interesting, considering the penance I was given. I wonder if Father has the same calendar! 😉  I doubt it…

I am listening…  
to very excited children!  One of them has already asked for an “ocean” themed birthday party for their next birthday.  They are all having so much fun!  We have also started a list of “things to bring” the next time we are able to come over to the coast: A kite, shovel, sand buckets, frisbee, etc…

Around the house hotel room… 
Traveling with a big family is difficult and expensive, so we usually avoid it when ever possible, opting for a summer camping trip or day trip for our family “vacations.”

This trip actually worked out well though and I am hoping we will be able to do it again!  We booked the “L shaped Family Room” which had 2 queen sized beds, a queen size pull out couch, and we asked for a roll-away.  The girls had one of the queens, Rascal and Snuggles had the couch/bed, Captain had the roll-away, and we bought a pack-and-play for Bud!

Here are a few more pictures taken during the afternoon, in the hotel room and on the beach. 
One of my favorite things…  
watching the Sunset over the ocean.

This week’s plans…

We had a dear friend and her children over for lunch today, and tomorrow we will be working on some Spring cleaning and grocery shopping for Easter.  Other than that it will be a quiet week in our home as we observe the Triduum and celebrate Easter!

A little peek at Monday…
because I just haven’t shared enough pictures from our trip yet! 😉 

After checking out of the hotel on Monday morning we headed North to another beach, a couple lookout points to watch for Whales, and then to a park before driving home.  


  1. Momma Holmes

    What a beautiful trip! You look amazing; your workout routines are helping you look so healthy! I'll pray too for your special intention! Whatever it may be. Happy Easter!

  2. Kimberlee

    How wonderful that you were able to enjoy some time away together! It looks like you had a great time together with lots of happy memories made.
    I read your post with my girls and Mary Rose noted that she just read about stinky seals today in The Children's Homer, 'We lay down in the holes she had scooped in the sand and she covered each of us with one of the skins she had brought. Then the seals came out of the sea and lay all around us. The smell that came from those beasts of the sea afflicted us, and it was then that our adventure became terrible…' I reckon poor Snuggles didn't have any ambrosia set beneath his nostrils to help him out. 🙂

  3. Tricia

    What beautiful pictures you took, they remind me that I don't go to the beach often enough.

    You seem so young to me ( I am almost 45 and my husband just turned 50 )

    Could you send a link to that cute day calendar? I could use a daily reminder like that.

    Have a blessed Holy Week!

  4. Jessica Gordon

    Thank you! I feel healthier, for sure, though I've been having a hard time getting back into a good routine with exercising again now that I'm feeling better. I hope you have a Happy Easter too!

  5. Jessica Gordon

    Oh, that is funny! I will have to share that with the children. And, no, poor little Snuggles didn't have anything to offset the smell!

  6. Shaina

    Is this Gold Beach or Brookings? I cannot believe what great weather you had at an Oregon beach! How fun for your husband's birthday! We are planning to go soon to Cannon Beach. My boys cannot wait!

  7. Jacqui

    Such beautiful pictures! I've been bugging my husband about a trip to the beach too. We'll have to look for a hotel with a family room, can't seem to find them around here =(
    BTW, You look great! Have a blessed Holy Week and a glorious and Happy Easter!

  8. Jennifer Elia

    Great post and birthday celebration. I know what you mean about time flying. When my husband turned 38 last year, I said to him, "How did this happen, we were 17 and now you are almost 40!" Needless to say that didn't go over well–I better watch what I say, too, I am only 2 years behind him.

    Have a blessed Easter. I can't believe it is this weekend–I am so far behind!

  9. Anonymous

    Looks like a wonderful time, I enjoyed all the pictures!

  10. Amy

    I needed that calendar reminder–so true! You have also reminded me that I need to clean prior to Thursday. . .and get ready for my daughter's birthday on Friday. Okay–taking deep breaths now! Hope your family has a special Easter!

  11. Anonymous

    Your family is so beautiful! I am glad you posted your trip details- I'm sure many times the kids were overly energetic and there were lots of prayers from mom and dad 🙂 Have a most blessed Holy Week.

  12. Jamie Jo

    Thanks so much for sharing your vacation with us! I loved all the pictures!!

    happy birthday to your husband! What a great idea to take him on a getaway!

  13. Cathy

    What a wonderful, fun filled family mini-vacation! Thanks so much for sharing these terrific pics with us, Jessica. I know you have probably shared this before but what kind of camera do you use? Your pics are always so good.

  14. mel

    sigh. I spent my teen years in Florida and I have been missing the beach so much lately!! It looks beautiful! 🙂

  15. Anonymous

    You have such gorgeous photos to record your trip (The one of your husband surrounded by your children-in front of the cake, as well as the one with you, your husband and Bud were especially good! You are all so very photogenic!!
    Glad you had a good time! I do miss those Oregon Beaches (haven't seen them since I was in college, and that was many years ago!)


  16. Julie

    Beautiful photos!!

    What a great celebration as a family!!!

    Happy 40th Sean!!

  17. Anonymous

    Jessica, you look so good! Running on the beach is hard! And it must have been so nice to be able to do it with Sean. That makes it more fun and special.

    So glad that Sean had an amazing birthday. He is an wonderful man and you both deserve all the best!

    God bless!

  18. admin

    Looks like a fun trip. :o) I especially love the pics of all the redwoods. I haven't been down south, but I would love to! Just the other weekend we did the north coast–Astoria. We saw lots of big ships pass under the bridge…but no beach visits, which my kids would've loved. But your photos made me feel like we were there with you! Thanks for sharing!

    :o) Becky (near Portland)

  19. Mom2Seven

    I always enjoy your Daybook, Jessica. Happy birthday to Sean! He seems to be a very good man, and you and your children are blessed. The pictures were beautiful. You do look great! +JMJ+

  20. Robina

    cracking up over the age road sign pics. looks like a fun trip.

  21. Anonymous

    Greetings from the opposite corner of the vast Pacific Ocean 🙂
    I always find it refreshing to visit the sea-coast.
    Lovely to see your photos, thank you for sharing.
    Good health, and a blessed Easter to you all.

  22. elm

    Jessica – I miss you SO and the BEACH!! Oh, the beach in Oregon – I see these pictures and – of course – they are ALL my favorite "haunts"!! Oh, how I miss being able to load up and head to the coast for a day or two. Wish we could have been there and joined you guys for a fun birthday celebration! 🙂


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Prayer of Mothers

Father in heaven, grant me the grace to appreciate the dignity which you have conferred on me. Let me realize that not even the Angels have been blessed with such a privilege—to share in your creative miracle and bring new Saints to heaven. Make me a good mother to all my children after the example of Mary, the Mother of your Son. Through the intercession of Jesus and Mary I ask your continued blessings on my family. Let us all be dedicated to your service on earth and attain the eternal happiness of your kingdom in heaven. Amen.

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Sean & Jessica, Captain-23, Ranger-22, Twinkle Toes-20, Chiquita-18, Snuggles-16, Rose-14, Bud-12, Grace-6 and Joy-4 (blog nicknames)

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Hi! I'm Jessica, a Roman Catholic wife and home educating mother to our nine children. I was home educated myself, along with my eleven younger siblings. I have a special devotion to St. Therese, through whom I have been given much help and many blessings--the beautiful "Shower of Roses" that she has sent my way! Here I will record a few of the blessings I treasure. Please remember that what you see here is just a little glimpse at our lives, so please say a prayer for us, as we continue to strive for holiness.

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