I'm feeling quite proud that I was able to source out such a great hotel - the place we have is awesome (Parklanes Suites - http://www.parklanesuites.com/suites_onebedroom.html)! A suite with living room and kitchenette (supplied with portland roasted coffee and oatmeal and orange juice for our first breakfast) - perfect for a few days here while the van gets looked at. This place is the same price as the run down, grimy place we were in for the last two nights in Seaside! I feel so accomplished to have gotten such a find ( maybe all that time on the internet paid off). And it's in a nice part of Portland (Nobb Hill area).. close to many things - I'm excited to go explore on foot tomorrow. We already got a little taste of Portland - we went to the Japanese Gardens in Washington Park ( a huge park/forest area overlooking Portland - has Oregon zoo, children's museum, rose gardens, tennis courts etc. with views of Mt. Hood on clear days.. but it was too hazy for us).
The Japanese Garden so tranquil, calm.. could have spend another hour just sitting.. but the boys had finished their scavenger hunt exercise and were tugging at the sleeve to go.
Earlier this morning we did manage to visit Cannon Beach and it was lovely, a wonderful place to vacation. Beautiful, picturesque beach and a very quaint town that makes you want to look in every nook and cranny store there is. The town of Seaside was more chitzy, gaudy almost (had big video arcades) in comparison to Cannon Beach where the stores are more boutique, unique, local owned type thing (they didn't have a Pig N' Pancake place there!). It was beautiful, but we didn't stay for long.