Noelle here:

Its been over a week since Steve finished Washington. We drove down through Vancouver, WA to see family for a couple days, with the expectation that we’d visit then head to California for the rest of the trail. We had such a wonderful time. We relaxed, read scary stories with grandkids and had a great time!




Landon cell phone challenge

One of our grandsons joked with his dad about getting the new iPhone if he could get 5000 Instagram likes. To be fair, our son said 5000 likes AND you buy your own phone. It was still great fun to watch the likes rise to 750 within a couple hours. I don’t know how kids do that! I think he’s just shy of 1800 likes as I type this.🤣

“#emojionpoint” That cracks me up! 😂




Bill and Estelle

We also visited with my sister, brother in law and Dad. Then, instead of driving to Cali, we ended up flying to Colorado Springs with Steve’s parents. Here’s a fun picture of them holding their wedding picture. 62 years of marriage! What an inspiration. They show us again and again what honoring your vows looks like in every day life.

Our current plan is to head back to Portland this evening. Then drive back to California in a couple days to start back on the trail. However if we’ve learned nothing else during this summer outside, it’s that flexibility is the name of the game.

(Update: changed flights to the next afternoon)

(Second update: we changed them again and stayed a little longer)

#flexibiltyinaction 🤣

As it turns out, we got back to Vancouver in time to be here for my dad to have a heart procedure. Not an easy thing, especially for the over 80 crowd.

I definitely have a swirl of conflicting feelings, as I want to see Steve finish the trail, even with this reality of the parental pull. Steve has expressed the desire to give the Pacific Crest Trail his all and leave nothing on the table. I believe he’s done that.


Steve and his parents

I believe this week, in trying to care for his parents, he’s continued to do just that.

My love and respect for Steve has grown this summer during such a physical and mental challenge. My love and respect for the way he has tried to help support and guide his parents over the past few years couldn’t be stronger. He has a special bond with them and it’s beautiful for me to witness.

Life is hard sometimes. Aging parents are really hard sometimes. There’s so much joy in individual moments, even while there’s sadness amid the realization that things won’t ever be the same again.


My parents

I was listening to a band named Sugarland today and one song had the line, “do you know that with all I have left in my very last breath, I will call your name”. That’s the kind of love I saw in my parents before my mother died. That’s the kind of love I see in Steve’s parents.

That’s how I feel about Steve. With all I have left, in my very last breath, I will call your name.


Steve and his Mom

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