September 2007 Archive - Divine Reflections Photography Blog

Summer Vacation 2007: Oregon Coast

Harris Beach State Park, Oregon (July 21)


Cloudy with rain/mist at night.

  • Played on Harris Beach
  • Buryed Ariana in the sand

Crystal and Rachelle were playing in the surf at Harris Beach. Crystal was wearing regular shorts because her husband forgot to pack her bathing suit. (Oops.) At one point, a rather large wave took her shorts down to her ankles. The wave receded, and all of the people looking in her general direction got mooned. They all thought it was hysterically funny, but I was bummed because I missed the whole episode!

Beverly Beach State Park, Oregon (July 22-23)


Cloudy and/or foggy both days. Foggy/misty the first night, clear the second night.

  • Window shopped and ate lunch and caramel apples in the historic bayfront area of Newport
  • Explored tidepools at Yaquina Head
  • Climbed the Yaquina Head lighthouse
  • Trash the prom dress shoot on Beverly Beach with Rachelle and Ariana

I woke up in the tent and looked over to see a giant smile on Emily's face. This melted my heart almost every day on this trip. This particular morning I watched my wife jump between Ariana and Rachelle's air mattresses and then proceed to tickle and kiss them until they were awake and begging for mercy.

Emily kept asking to "Take walk!" (To hear this in your mind correctly, you have to pronounce the k's like you are speaking German.)

Newport Cutie

Salad and a Pepsi

Looking for Wildlife

Common Murre

Dad and Ariana

Tidepool Anenomes

Posted by Greg on September 28, 2007 at 8:00AM.

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Summer Vacation 2007: Redwoods

Playing in the Sand

Surfin' USA

The Girls and a Honkin' Tree

Humboldt Redwoods State Park, California (July 17)


Raining cats and dogs.

  • Ate at a small cafe to keep from drowning
  • Drove the Avenue of the Giants

Our campsite was beautiful. It was secluded and huge. Also, it stopped raining long enough for us to pack without getting drenched.


We followed our plans to camp here in spite of scattered rain showers in the forecast. After all, it was California in July. How bad could it be? Unfortunately, we had overlooked a major factor in the weather: the Coates Camping Curse. This curse has followed my family since I was a small child. You see, it is nearly impossible for any Coates family member to go on a camping trip without getting rained on or having some other natural problem. For example, not too long after Crystal and I were married, we went camping with my parents in Tennessee. It was nice until the day we packed up to go home. We woke up to a torrential downpour. We hurriedly loaded the car. After about five minutes, we didn't care about the rain so much because it would have been impossible for us to get any wetter. We learned later that the entire campground had washed away when the nearby creek flooded. On another occasion, we took my parents to Crescent City to camp in the Redwoods. A tsunami warning was issued while we were there. Are you starting to get the idea?

When we arrived at the state park, it was cloudy, but the clouds didn't look too bad. We dug the tent out of the van and erected it. No sooner had we installed the rain fly when the rain started. By the time we had our sleeping bags and mattresses in the tent, the sky had opened up completely.

Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, California (July 18-20)


Varied. We got beautiful sun one day and rain the other two as well as light rain each night.

  • Built sand structures and rode waves at a Crescent City beach
  • Attended campfire program titled Bear Tales at our campground
  • Toured Ocean World in Crescent City
  • Walked to Battery Point Lighthouse (no tsunami warning this time)
  • Hiked to Fern Canyon
  • Drove Newton B. Drury Parkway through Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
Food notes

We had burgers cooked over an open campfire one night. They were extremely good, but if you want to try this yourself I suggest that you use something more sturdy and less likely to melt than a plastic fork to turn them. You'll be less likely to catch them on fire like we did.


We got to pet starfish, anenomes, and sharks at Ocean World. There was also a great sea lion show.

Redwoods are big. Really big. They are so big that I told Emily we were going to see "honkin' trees." She kept asking about honkin' trees for days after we left.

We saw four giant bull elk right next to the road when we drove in to the Fern Canyon trailhead.


I woke up sick the first day in this campground. It was not fun, but at least I recovered quickly

We narrowly missed a pretty nasty car accident on the drive to the trailhead. The car behind us got hit by a tire and axle that came off a semi truck in the lane going the opposite direction. We stopped to help and everyone was okay.

Emily in Sissie's Clothes


Plumber Pants


Fern Sprout

Inspecting Ferns

Posted by Greg on September 26, 2007 at 5:00PM.

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Tag. We're It!

A lot of photographers are playing a game of tag on the internet these days. We've been tagged by Dan Watkins. That means that we have to tell 8 things about ourselves that our readers might not know and then tag some other photographers.

Here's our list of 8 things:

  1. Crystal and I have been foster parents for almost 3 years. We have 2 foster kids right now, and we've had a total of 13 children in our home.
  2. I grew up in Weaverville, North Carolina. Crystal grew up in Chico, California. We met in Wilmore, Kentucky, when we were introduced by my brother. I was attending college in Cedarville, Ohio, at the time.
  3. Our first adopted child was a co-dependent beagle named Gracie. We rescued her from the Humane Society in Kentucky.
  4. Two of our favorite summer activities are swimming and grilling.
  5. I like bragging on my wife. So I'm going to brag a bit. Crystal is a full-time Mom, a photographer, and a homeschool teacher to two of our five children. If I tried to do everything that she does on a daily basis, it would probably kill me. She's my hero!
  6. Crystal and I have a dream to bicycle across Europe some day, and Greg really wants to hike the Appalachian Trail.
  7. We both like to read. A lot. Our current favorite author is Ted Dekker, who writes great thrillers. The twist is that his thrillers have incredibly powerful morals.

Now we get to tag some other photographers. Amber and Nathan Holritz, JT Pals, Jason Tench, Jeanette Krzyzek, and Denise Neufeld, you're it!

Posted by Greg on September 18, 2007 at 8:00AM.

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Lucy - Six Months

It is amazing to me how quickly time flies! Little Lucy is already 6 months old, and I got the pleasure of hanging out with her and her family recently. We decided to try a different setting since Lucy is a bit older, so we went to the park. Summer is such a great mom, and even made putting sunblock on Karis seem fun.

All three children had a blast. Ethan perfected the art of rolling cars down the slide, Karis enjoyed the jungle gym and slide and Lucy enjoyed playing with her mommy. It is always a pleasure to hang out with the Price family. I hope you guys enjoy the pictures.

Posted by Crystal on September 11, 2007 at 1:30PM.

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Summer Vacation 2007: Napa and Six Flags

Riding Voodoo

Richard and Tricia's House, Napa, CA (July 15-16)



  • Swam in the community pool at Richard and Tricia's house
  • Rode big roller coasters (for the big people) and little rides (for the little people) at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
  • Walked through the Shark Experience aquarium
  • Watched the trained dolphin show
  • Emily and Ariana rode an elephant
  • Crystal, Ariana, and Rachelle rode the Skycoaster, a giant swing
  • Saw the Spirit of Shouka whale show

I rode the Road Runner Express, a small roller coaster, with Emily. She kept saying "Whee!" as we flew up and down the hills. When we disembarked, Emily wanted to keep riding. She said, "More whee! More wheee!"

The animal shows proved how talented dolphins and whales can be. The dolphins can leap several feet in the air. Both can be trained to perform a mind-boggling range of behaviors on command. One of these behaviors is swimming along the edge of the pool and splashing the audience. Rachelle was splashed thoroughly during the whale show.

Rachelle volunteered to pull the ripcord that released the swing when she, Ariana, and Crystal road the Skycoaster. She was instructed to pull the cord when the operator counted to three. He counted to three, and nothing happened. She inquired, "What?" Everyone yelled at her to pull the cord, and finally she got the idea and released the swing.

Rachelle and Ariana rode a ride called Cargo Queen with Emily and Cheyenne. The teenagers taught the younger kids to raise their arms and scream just like the teenagers would scream while riding a roller coaster. How adorable!

All of the older riders loved the Velocity roller coaster. It shoots riders to a speed of about 70 miles per hour in a fraction of a second.

Richard and Cheyenne

Daddy Holding Emily


Boarding the Road Runner Express

Pepe Le Pew's Rafts of Romance

Posted by Greg on September 4, 2007 at 5:00PM.

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Filed under coates family, photos, summer vacation 2007 and trip reports.