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« A couple of weekends ago (Part One). | Main | Happy Birthday Josh Downs. »


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Tanya Webster

you seriously crack me know what i love about you?? your post wasnt all fake about how beautiful it all was (which it was i am sure) and how awesome it was to spend time together (which it was i am sure also) but the fact that you always keep it real karen russell.....and someday your kids will read this and remember and somehow remember ALL of it being fun....even miss courtney lee with her skinned knees and elbows and this story will make them laugh and laugh and laugh....

i know it made me laugh and laugh and laugh :) love you!


I love your story telling! Felt like I was there! We need to make a trek up there and do that hike. We only drive by on the highway! Looking forward to part 3!


These last two posts have been cracking me up!!! I love how you keep it real, crankiness, neck pinching, and all. You have given me such a good picture of what your excursion was like that I almost feel as if I was there myself.
Thanks for the laughs.

Shari Barnes

Just had to come out of my lurking status to say how much I LOVE your photos! You have such an amazing way of telling a story through your images. BEAUTIFUL work!!


I live with one of those "hike all the way to the top" guys. It's so feel for ya! And I got my Workshop binder today! Thanks!


Nanny pinching her neck is the cutest thing ever.

Your pics are amazing... per the usual.



nanny= annie... oops!

Heather (in Scotland)

I'd not heard of Multnomah Falls before, then this week read about it on your blog and in the William P Young book "The Shack" (have you read it? Loving it - all about God's love).

Can't believe Josh made you get up at 4am to go on vacation in your own state!

LOL at the photo of Courtney Lee with the phone.

And how CUTE is COley in your Multnomah Falls layout from back in 2003. :wub:


you need to write a book - you just have such a way with words (and the pictures help too)! love the bandaid shot! :)


I can totally sympathize with living with "one of those people that are so perfect it's actually annoying". That cracked me up.

kristan martin

Oh my goodness, this is so funny! Probably because I can relate to a lot of the husband, wife, kid stuff and the part about the women in make-up, sun dresses and full make up was almost too much! I've been there, it sucks!


Ah, the joys of family vacation! Fun story, great pictures as usual. I think my favorite is the one with Coley & Courtney in the tree and Annie pinching her neck. The light in the leaves is really cool and kind of magical.Although I love the look on C's face with the band-aid. Have a great day!

Leonie - Australia

Lovely story Karen, & just so typical of a day with kids, its great that it is all recorded like this.


Reading this made me feel like I was walking along side of you! You need to write a book. I've never heard of this place but then again, I've only been to Oregon once.


I'm soo dying here! I think your DH & mine are long lost brothers......

Teresa B

You crack me up Karen.. sounds like some of our family trips!!! Love the shot of Courtney in the tree.. so sweet


can the girly-girls and i come next time...
you guys look like too much fun!

i promise i won't let them run down hills.

Tanya Andersson

So if Josh let the girls run down the hills wouldn't they get more sure footed?? Just a thought. Thanks for taking use with you on your outing. It's just like being there.One of these days I am going to make it to Multnomah Falls. Lived in Oregon for the last 14 years and haven't made it there yet. Maybe there is a challenge to everyone who reads your blog, go somewhere in your state, county, or town that you have always said you wanted to go but never have.

Kim H.

so funny!!! love your picture scrapbook!!

Judy Grubbs

Cute story. Josh does sound pretty perfect, except for one very big issue, he's a Beaver. Go Ducks!


just LOVE your storytelling...

Mary Ann

I absolutely LOVE the pic of Courtney in the tree. Looks like it's straight out of a magazine.
Thanks for taking us along on your vacation.


What fun are hills if you can't run down and lose control? Oy! Imagine them when the driver's license comes, first dates, sports, etc...

Good luck Karen! ;)


"It's All Good" Karen!

That's the one of the funniest stories so far--besides falling twice in a day.

I'm almost "peeing my pants" here reading this stuff!

Those perfectly coiffed girls in their cute sundresses and sandals probably have really CRAPPY pictures of their daytrip!


(BTW, you look really cute in that picture--and skinny!)


I had to stop myself from laughing out loud at your animated and very real story telling, coz I will definitely wake my 14-month son who's just gone to nap. Thanks for keeping it real. Yuo will be happy to know that this pair of sausage legs won't even make it halfway up the hill...


You look FABULOUS in that photo Karen!

Murphy's law... don't you hate it! But I have to tell you I laughed reading this... somehow knew where it was heading ;) hehe great story to scrapbook though!!!



SO funny! I love to hear about your family's adventures! I can totally relate! Thanks for sharing!


Karen, I have really enjoyed this little two part series, I agree with the others, I adore how you tell it like it is... makes my little annoyances with those I oh-so-love not so... different. Thank you for sharing your life experiences, beautiful photos and wonderful commentary. You make my day.

Deanna--from the current photography class


You are such a doll! After a long day at work, I look forward to coming home and reading your blog. You have a gift at truly capturing the moment, both in pictures and words.


Oh my gosh, Karen, you are so freakin' hilarious! Thanks for making me smile with your anecdotes of your every-day life. Keep them coming!


You soooooooooooo crack me up!!! I needed that laugh today! Thanks girl!

Susan L (lily40au)

Don't you just hate it when something happens just as you're telling someone to stop because it might happen ... now you'll never be able to stop Josh telling the kids to stop running.

Thanks for the great story.


I was laughing out so loud! I love your candid storytelling and honesty when it comes to your kids. I had to read a few parts aloud to my sister and we were both laughing 'till we almost couldn't breathe!


Karen I love your pictures & stories and check your blog first thing to see what is going on in your life. I agree that you need to write a book! I love all the little things you mention: Yannie pinching her neck, the no running (I'm just like Josh on this one -sorry but I worry in advance about what could happen, oy!), your sausage leg issues (you are skinny and look great so I don't believe you! : P) etc. Keep those great pics & stories coming!


P.S. Karen - how on earth do you get your children to look so natural in pictures? My kids look at me when I try to be non-chalant and give me goofy grins or stiff looking poses. Your kids seem to just go about their fun and let you do what you do. Any tips?


Karen- I so enjoy reading your posts, laughing along and visually joining you in your journeys. Your photography stops me dead in my tracks. I look and then look again at your beautiful photos. The scenery is stunning but it is pales in comparison to the beauty you capture within your children. I so need to take a class with you. Perhaps I will get that chance someday ....
Maybe you can let me in on how you frame your photos....I love the angles, how the people are straight but the horizon line moves... they are fabulous! I love when my google reader brings up a new entry from you! Thanks for sharing your life with us !


it's so funny because your pictures look like the "picture perfect day" but then you tell it like it really is.....I love that. Because it reminds me of when my 3 were young and whinning and fighting everywhere we went! hahaha....keep it real Karen!!

Carrie T

Beautiful pictures. I could almost feel the cool air on my face!

Do I need to come up there and kick Josh's butt. Girls not sure footed. Oh please. :)


You always keep it real.. LOVE it. Felt like I was there (as always). Thanks for not sugar-coating things and leaving in the squabbling & disagreements & the mishaps. Makes me feel normal.

And hey... you look fantastic in that picture!

And don't forget to tell us the story about the scar on your foot.


I can't believe I'm FINALLY leaving you a comment! Hope you'll see it and read it among the TONS you get! What prompted me finally? For giving me a laugh AGAIN. And seeing the photos of Courtney Lee... I bank online with WA Mutual... and the photo on their main(?) site has a pix of a girl... looks exactly like her! Is it her??? And who the heck am I? I actually took a class with you IN it.. back a few years ago, with Karen Burniston in Gresham, OR. I can't hear too well (cochlear), and can be [shy] in public. I teach Scrap classes at the local Craft Warehouse too! Thanks for your beautiful photos and your amazing, fun, hip BLOG!

kim in Camas - ScrapToMyLu

Oh I needed that laugh, thank you. We did this hike last year and my husband is much like your josh downs....perfect and annoying....except he's a duck.....I was SO bored on this hike. zig.....zag....zig....zag....They could at least put an ice cream stand at the top. :)

Michele L

Karen, you NEVER FAIL to drag out all the emotions from me when I read your posts! I just fall straight in to the happiness, joys, frustrations, laughter, and sadness when you blog! And hey, who cares if that test says your blog's of elementary writing level? It's the understanding that matters! And lots of deep meanings and things like ironies are brought out perfectly with elementary school english! =)


Beautiful photos of your kids in the tree! love it love it love it. always good stuff here :)

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