Tuesday, December 13, 2011

baby it's cold outside

So after two weeks of bright sunshine and dark skies filled with planets and constellations the night of the lunar moon we get freezing fog. No eclipse for us. However what we got instead was pretty cool. Icy in fact. Burr, it is really cold outside for this gypsy who loves living in the desert in the winter. 

Newly plowed fields stand in stark contrast to the frosted grass and trees.

Goldendale, a blinking red stoplight town. My kind of place.

Happy Holidays from me to you!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

have i told you

Well, here it is the first of December. For the past 10 winters, my home has been in Arizona, Florida or Texas. This winter I'm enjoying a new house on our property Birdwood. Have I told you how fabulous it is?

We had snow a couple of weeks ago and it made the mud look wonderful. I won't be posting any photos of the mud until I have some before and after shots. Landscaping and covered decks will happen in the spring.

We decided on a little house that takes advantage of our amazing view of Mt. Hood.

There are plenty of deer to entertain us and our little dog.

There are agates, fossils and petrified wood here. These are my finds from today's walk. A lot of the wood appears to be driftwood. I must find out the species of tree and how old it is.

 A fiery winter sunset.

We see our buddy "Owlie" almost every day.

All those windows provide great light for my jewelry photos. The petrified wood makes a very cool prop.

Life is good.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

it's been a while

Owlie supervises
I have a good excuse for not blogging much in the last month. My life as a full-time gypsy has come to an end. Notice I said full-time. We've ordered a Double Wide and it has arrived. Wow, there's a lot to do. 

We've moving into a house after ten years of living in a fifth wheel. Nice change. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

the mountain

We've had a some cloudy rainy weather for what seems like forever, but actually only about a week. This morning our Mt. Hood showed up. Nice.


Monday, September 26, 2011

journal entry #3,198

Friday January 14, 2011
Port Lavaca, Texas

The weather remains cold and by cold I mean highs in the low 40s. Today there is overcast as well. The wind has died. That's good. Because of the cold windy weather we've been doing a lot of hunkering. And when the 300 square feet of living space gets too small, we've been driving. And not near the surf of the Gulf. The land sure is flat and you really notice it when you drive through nothing but plowed fields with a house or out buildings every half mile or so. I miss the mountains and the big views. This flat land is almost claustrophobic because it's obvious how much of our world is sky and how little of it is land. If that makes sense. There are lots of hawks hunting the plowed fields and there are lots of geese and cranes in those plowed fields too. The houses are mostly crumbling from their encounters with hurricanes. Most of the small towns have many lots with concrete floors where once there stood a building. We agree that neither of us would be comfortable here during hurricane season. 

Matagorda is a cute little coastal town. A big tall bridge takes us out to Matagorda Island and we drive to a collection of vacation homes and condos and then the beach. It looks just like Padre Island except for the shells. Here they litter the beach and many of them are keepers. Hilldog runs like a wild dog and we groove on the surf. There's not much better than a beach. Maybe petrified sand dunes.

end of a decade

My goodness, here it is almost the end of September. The summer has been a busy one and now fall promises to be even more exciting. I'm calling it the season of transition for more reasons than one. Not only will the landscape be transitioning into the dark and cold of winter with very little in the way of vegetation, Dick and I will be transitioning. Our decade of sweet life as full time "trailer trash" is coming to an end. We've ordered a manufactured house for Birdwood and it will be here in just a few more weeks! Our indoor space will suddenly seem vast. Our outdoor space will go from summer to fall to winter to spring if we choose. For ten years we've skipped winter for the most part by driving south and living in the deserts of my beloved southwest, the tropics of Florida, the exotic Texas Gulf coast and a little touch of Southern California's glitter. The older I get the less I like cold weather. I AM liking the thought of a new house and the promise of driving south again after the smell of that new house gets old or my bones get too creaky.

the building site

Friday, August 26, 2011


Summer. I love that word. I love that season. The Pacific Northwest has experienced a cooler than normal summer and it has been wonderful. Until a week ago, we didn't have a day over 85. Perfect for humans. Perfect for birds. Perfect for gardens. Summer, I hate to see you go.

white tail bucks
"owlie" the barred owl who has shared our land this year
my neighbor's zucchini blossom
imagine fresh peas in mid-August... usually too hot by then
a volunteer sunflower hosting a bumble bee
a sunrise thunderstorm with Mt. Hood sparkling outside the window
rarely does a morning or evening go by with out a visit from "owlie"

Thursday, August 4, 2011

hot pink summer

I bought this bougainvillaea plant in Bullhead City, Arizona early this spring. It looked nearly dead and was on the sale rack. Poor thing had to live inside when we got to Birdwood because it has been such a cool spring/summer. About a month ago it came back outside to live and look at it flourish! This is the flower that most desert southwest resorts use for landscaping and hedges, as well as more tropical climes like Florida and Hawaii. It looks happy to be living in a clay pot in south central Washington. How I love a hot pink summer.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

don't follow the directions

This is what happens when you don't follow the directions, which said to thin the plants as seedlings sprout. This was a "butterfly mix" and I didn't even look to see what flowers seeds it included. What a wonderful surprise to have most of it grow up to be bachelor's buttons!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Life is all about change and transition. Sometimes I hate it and sometimes I love it. For nearly a year now I've been "transitioning" the bulk of my jewelry for sale from eBay to Etsy. I like the huge audience that eBay draws and I will always appreciate my success there. eBay makes it completely easy to contribute to charities so I will always maintain a presence there to support my favorite charities. But I'm loving the artsy community of Etsy. I've dubbed it my online street festival place. Friday, July 22, was the most fun day yet of my life on Etsy. One of my necklaces made it to the front page of Etsy, the page where you go when you type in www.etsy.com. The curator, Fabric Fascination, will always be one of my best Etsy friends! Woot woot - THAT was exciting :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

a garden is a good thing

This is the second year for our squirrel proof garden. We have an over abundance of ground squirrels so the garden is lined with chicken wire even 2 feet below the surface. It has been a cooler than normal spring and summer for us in the Northwest. Our garden is liking everything about this year's weather. So far the garden has given us radishes, romaine, beets, carrots, green onions, basil, parsley, swiss chard, oregano, sage, rosemary and thyme. And the flowers... omg, they are off the scale this year. A garden is a very good thing.

thwarted nuisance rodent - last year's garden
the squirrels aren't even trying this year - instead we get seranaded
the first of the produce
not yet but soon
swiss chard in all it's glory - delicious
string beans reaching for the sky
bachelor's button
as good as it gets - fresh strawberries
growing our very own Walla Walla sweet onions
incredible color - I love me some snapdragons
For those of you interested in my jewelry... everything in my Etsy shop is 30% off through the end of July. Use coupon code JULYCHRISTMAS when you check out :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

journal entry # 3,180

Monday, Day 3,180
Padre Island to I.G. McGee County Park, Port Aransas, Texas

Our two weeks at Malaquite campground are up. It's time to go. George the fish-fry guy told us about the county park at Port Aransas, which turned out to be cool when we scouted it. It's less than an hour away.  We decide to go for primitive beach camping instead of the campground with hook-ups. It turns out to be a good call. We snag a really secluded campsite on the south jetty where the shipping channel goes into Corpus Christi Bay. 

From our campsite the jetty goes out about half a mile into the gulf. It's a huge fishing area - at any time there are at least 50 guys spread out along the jetty casting bait to God knows what might be out there.

Best of all, the channel has boat traffic including big ships. Our back window is going to get some use here.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

a favorite uncle

I have many aunties and uncles and choosing ONE favorite is an impossible task. So instead I have favorites. One of my favorite uncles has lived 92 mostly great years. He has recently suffered a stroke and is nearing the end of this life on planet Earth. I was thinking about it in the shower and decided that end of life has to be the worst phase of living. It is also a time to reflect and rejoice in having known and being loved. Uncle has been a positive influence in my life starting in my twenties. I remember visiting as a child, but my appreciation for Uncle and Aunt grew as I did. (Seventy years ago yesterday they were married!) When Mom and Dad were too far away to co-sign my first auto loan, Uncle was willing. He worked in a pretty cool office downtown and I'll never forget sitting across the big fancy desk from him while he signed the papers and said to me, "You are trustworthy. I'm happy to do this for you." I've been fortunate to live fairly close to Uncle and Aunt most of my adult life. And I'll tell you, there's nothing better than a loving shoulder when one is needed, a family gathering from time to time, phone calls and e-mails over the years, and a knowledge that you'll always be welcome and loved. Here's to my Uncle, a wise man who has lived a good life.