When we travel, if we plan to stay somewhere for three days or more, we enjoy staying in vacation rentals. Our family is now large enough that we don’t fit so easily into your traditional hotel room and we like the freedom and flexibility of making our own meals when on the road.

We live in Oregon where it is cold and rainy for the majority of the wintertime, and for someone who was raised in Texas, I find these long days of rain can really begin to irk after a bit. For the past few years we’ve tried to escape from our usual routine of watching the rain fall and have made a point of getting away for 3-4 days during January or February, for a change of pace. We’ve found this to be a delightful way to explore our beautiful state and also break up the monotony of the rain.

DSC_1420This year we decided to make our escape to the Oregon coast. With any luck, we’d enjoy some clear skies and some fun on the beach. We packed the kids up and headed to the “Relections” house in Lincoln City.

We chose this house for two main reasons:

  1. It advertised as being right on the beach; and
  2. It advertised having an indoor pool.

True on both counts!

This house was a great fit for our family in many respects. There was plenty of room for us to spread out and we were afforded the space necessary that everyone was able to get a solid night of sleep. (When you have small children, you appreciate the necessity of this.) The house is indeed directly on the shoreline and so it made transporting said children to and from the beach a breeze. (See side photo to get a feel for the distance between the house and the water.) When it did drizzle and/or rain, we were had a gorgeous, large picture window with which to observe the wonders of creation. The pool, located in the “basement” area of the house was also surrounded by windows so you were able to swim and look out at the crashing waves at the same time. We found the house to be well-supplied with towels (quite necessary if doing excess swimming!) and most every amenity thought of.

DSC_1597The Reflections house was the “main attraction” of our getaway trip and so it was important to us that it suited our needs. My husband planned to make this trip a “working vacation” and worked remotely. He did have issues establishing an internet connection, spending the better part of an hour on the phone with management in an attempt to settle the issue.  That’s not our most preferred way to start a trip. (If it wasn’t required that he work remotely, this wouldn’t have been such an issue to us.) If having Wifi is important to you, know that it is attainable in this house but that you might experience some issues securing it.

As chief cook for our family, it is important to me that I have a well-stocked kitchen to work in. I did find all of the utensils/cookware/dinnerware on  hand that was needed. However, much of the equipment is run down and leaves you with the general feeling that things are dirty. I chose the nicest looking frying pan of the lot and cooked exlusively with that one pan. Most of the glassware needed to be washed before we could use it. This did not speak well to me of the housekeeping. However, the state of the dishes made sense to me when we were preparing to depart the house for ourselves. We are well used to needing to tidy up after ourselves in a vacation rental. However, we found the cleaning checklist in this home rather long and detailed. They would like you to have run all towels through the wash before leaving and wash all dishes and put them away. This is a little impractical, although we did manage it. When you are preparing to leave, it’s difficult to think about making sure the laundry is run and the dishes cleaned and put away when you are trying to leave the premises. I do understand that this is part and parcel of staying in a vacation rental and I’m good with a little extra work on my part to be able to stay at such a place. However, being asked to stay until the dishwasher is done running so that you can unload (or risk a fine!) does seem a little bit much and I’d give due consideration to staying there again if I were on a tight schedule the day of departure.

The pool was a delight to be able to use and we enjoyed being able to swim at leisure. The only issue with the pool is that guests of the home have no ability to control the temperature. If you need the temperature adjusted, you must call the manageable. (So you need to remember to check the temp in advance of wanting to swim to make sure it is to your liking!)

For those times when we were not in the house, we were down by the ocean. We were blessed to enjoy some clear skies each afternoon and evening and we made the most of our time exploring along the seashore. The kids enjoyed digging for treasure in the sand. We all enjoyed hunting for starfish and anemonae, running from and jumping in the waves and taking in soul satisfying sunsets.

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I could never stay long enough on the shore; the tang of the untainted, fresh, and free sea air was like a cool, quieting thought. Helen Keller

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Lincoln City does boast many lovely seafood restaurants and also many well-known chain eateries (Subway anyone?) but we ate most of our meals at the vacation rental.

DSC_1644One afternoon during our stay, while the children were napping, I took advantage of the time and did some shopping while the husband stayed at the house with the kids. I visited The Christmas Cottage and purchased an ornament to commemorate our trip to Lincoln City and then I popped into a candy shop that is in the same shopping strip and bought some candy apples for our family to share. Delicious! I highly recommend taking a moment to stop by for the Christmas and/or the candy. Both are fun.

We enjoyed our little getaway to the coast and if you have a chance to visit, we would highly recommend that you do!