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What 9 Months at the Beach Taught Me

When I was about 4 years old, my mom decided to move us from California up to the Oregon coast. She was burned out on the California vibe and eager to start over in a new town.

Mom was 27 years old and divorced my dad when I was two. My dad was against the idea of her taking me out of state but she had full custody. Even at 4 years old I knew. My mom was not one to argue with.

We moved in with a guy my mom had been dating. He decided to move to Oregon and invited us to join him in a tiny fishing town called Winchester Bay. Jack rented a small beach cottage and set up his leather business in the garage. When he wasn't hand stitching leather goods, he was fishing or listening to the Doobie Brothers (with a doobie on the side).

We flew up to Oregon and outfitted the cottage with thrifting finds. Mom found bark cloth material and made window curtains. She cut a large piece of floral oil cloth to use as a table covering. She hung peg board behind the stove for a place to hang cooking …

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