The beach is great if you have FOP…

Posted by Karen - August 14th, 2011

Posted by Karen

Earlier this week we returned from the second leg of our 2011 summer vacation.  It was hard to get back to the old routine…  It would be great if summer vacation could last forever!  Toward the end of the trip, Miranda and her brother Owen were both saying they didn’t want to go home.

After staying for a week with my parents in Calgary, Alberta (which was fabulous fun; see my previous blog), we drove south and then west for 2 days straight to arrive in the town of Seaside, Oregon.  We had rented a vacation property on-line ahead of time, and were happy to discover that it was really comfortable and would be a great place to spend some time.  The best thing was that we were only 1.5 blocks from a gorgeous sandy beach! 

My husband Pete with our kids Owen and Miranda on the boardwalk at Seaside.

We spent the next 5 days going to the beach, feeding the seals at the Seaside Aquarium, going to the beach, riding the Seaside Carousel, going to the beach, eating ice cream, going to the beach, shopping for souvenirs, going to the beach…  Well, I guess you get the picture.  ;-)

A cloudy day...

Miranda really liked the Seaside Carousel.  And it was cheap too, so we were happy to let her ride it a whole bunch of times.

Too bad I didn't get a picture of her actually ON the carousel!

The kids (and parents, too, if truth be told) also really liked an amazing shop which was actually an ice cream place on one side (“Beach Bites”) and a candy store on the other (“The Buzz”).  This place sold the most unbelievable stuff.  I couldn’t get over it and had to take photos of the menu, just to prove it was for real.  We bought ice cream there (repeat occasions) and fudge as well.

Note the banner sign offering deep fried Twinkies, Snickers and Oreo Cookies. They also had chocolate covered bacon (OK, so this has nothing specifically to do with our family or FOP, but I had to throw this in).


But really, the best thing was the beach.  It was a big broad expanse of sand leading to a shallow ocean shore.  When the tide was out, it left delightful tide pools, which were really perfect for Miranda to play in.  What was so great about it, though, was that on the sand, which was deep, warm and soft, Miranda could play just like any other kid.  The fact that she has Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP) didn’t matter – we could let her run around to her heart’s content without fear of her falling and hurting herself.  We eventually realized we didn’t even need her protective headband on, and we started leaving it off.  I wish he had done that right from the start, but we didn’t clue into that immediately. 

Of course, we had to supervise Miranda closely in the ocean, which had strong waves, but the same would have been true of any 6 year old.  Otherwise, it was so great to allow Miranda to do what she wanted without worrying!  As if to test our theory that the sand was safe, she did lose her balance once and fall face first into a tide pool.  All that happened was she got wet and sandy; she didn’t even cry.  No FOP consequences.

Some of the days there were sunny, and some not so much, but it really didn’t matter.  We had fun each and every day.

We DEFINTELY plan to return for another vacation in Seaside.

PS – next weekend we’ll be riding our bikes for the Canadian FOP Network’s “Ride to Cure FOP” fundraiser.  The CFOPN is a strong financial supporter of FOP rsearch, and there has never been a more important time to help our scientists!  2010 and 2011 have been incredible years for breakthroughs in developing treatments for FOP.  Please help us by donating to our Ride.  To donate on-line, go to, and enter my name, Karen Munro.  Or, send me a cheque made out to the Canadian FOP Network.  Thanks!

One Response to “The beach is great if you have FOP…”

  1. Kelly Sanderson says:

    We love taking Jasmine to the beach, we are lucky we live at the coast.
    Good luck with your bike ride next week, I added your article on xxx

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