Thursday, August 29, 2013

End of Summer Beach Trip

For our family, a beach trip just wouldn't be the same without first stopping to get breakfast at Camp 18. The old logging camp is now a restaurant, famous for gigantic pancakes and even more gigantic timber beams to hold the place together.
Our destination was Cannon Beach, home of Haystack Rock.
It was a sunny day and warm enough to be comfortable. A kite-flying breezy day, it was also sand and hair-flying weather.
No one minded the wind too much, but we were all glad that we wore our sweatshirts and I was thankful for my scarf. A day at the Oregon coast would seem strange if it was warm with still air.
My parents met us at the beach, bringing a few cousins along for some play time.
Before heading back over the Coast Range, we took a side trip up the coast to Fort Clatsop. Its a  replica of the place where Lewis and Clark and the Corp of Discovery spent that long and dreary winter of 1805-1806. All Summer they have costumed re-enactors on site that are full of interesting tidbits.
And that was that. One day. There and back. We wish it could have been longer, but Summer is winding to a close much too quickly, it seems, and time for long and relaxing family trips are at an end... for now.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Does Three Make a Collection?

Ever since I got my first tattoo, I've known that there would be more. I had a few ideas floating around in my brain, several folders on my desktop with idea and inspiration photos. But I'm not one to make decisions of this level of permanence quickly, so the ideas swelled and took shape, always on the backburner, until this Summer, when I had a few hours to myself to make it happen.

The result, simple and eloquent, and oh so meaningful...
And since I was already there with plenty of time left on the clock, I went ahead with another... my very own crafty tattoo...
I might stop there. Three feels somehow complete to me. I'm not out to keep collecting, and certainly am not a full-sleeve type of girl. I do have some other great ideas, but only time will tell if I decide that they're ones I want to visibly carry with me for the rest of my life...

PS. The perfectly-lit and staged photos were taken by my talented photographer sister Joann. I highly recommend her to anyone who might be within traveling radius of the Bay area or the Pacific Northwest, where she visits often.

Monday, August 26, 2013

*NEW* Hibernation Day

The words on this sampler come from a song called, “Hibernation Day”, which is on a Christmas album by Jars of Clay. I had so much fun designing the bands to go along with the lyrics. I wanted an overall cozy, winter-y feel without being too holiday-ish. Well, it turned out pretty Christmas-y anyway, but hopefully that won’t deter you from keeping it on display all winter long.

Stitch Count: 105 x 328
Model stitched on DMC 28ct. Natural that was coffee stained before stitching.

Using flosses from The Gentle Art: 0350 Mulberry, 7025 Shaker White, 7047 Mustard Seed, 7048 Old Hickory, 7082 Piney Woods, 7097 Pecan Pie

Frame by Valley House Primitives.

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will be going out to my distributors and the shops on my automatic shipments list soon. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email:

If your LNS owner was at the TNNA show in St. Charles this weekend, there's a chance he/she may have a copy in shop this morning. Stop in or give them a call and request it!

And be sure to check out my other new design, The Stars are Brightly Shining, which was released simultaneously.

*NEW* The Stars are Brightly Shining

Long a favorite Christmas carol of mine, this sampler is inspired by the lyrics of “O, Holy Night”.

Stitch Count: 135 x 113
Model stitched on Picture This Plus 28ct. Doubloon

Using flosses from The Gentle Art: 0350 Mulberry, 0420 Gold Leaf, 7018 Woodrose, 7048 Old Hickory, 7057 Roasted Marshmallow, 7082 Piney Woods, 7097 Pecan Pie

The lovely frame is an antique.

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will be going out to my distributors and the shops on my automatic shipments list soon. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email:

If your LNS owner was at the TNNA show in St. Charles this weekend, there's a chance he/she may have a copy in shop this morning. Stop in or give them a call and request it!

And be sure to check out my other new design, Hibernation Day, which was released simultaneously.

Thursday, August 22, 2013


My Daughter, the one with the sweetly innocent face and charming giggle. The one that rarely mis-behaves but is prone to leaving large messes in her ever-moving wake. The one that loves to cuddle and help with chores and make large pretend meals to share with anyone who is willing. That same Girl is developing quite the sense of humor.

I was preparing to make Bread and Butter Pickles last week and stepped out of the kitchen for a few brief moments. Do you see what I found when I came back?

Look closer.
Yes. That's my Girl. Her sense of humor is genetic.

Still don't see it? That's a little plastic cucumber that she snuck onto my stack. Then she stood watching from the other room and waited for my reaction. When I said, "Hey, who put a plastic pickle on my pile?", she came skipping into the room with a twinkle in her eye, giggling. "I wanted to twick you, Mama", she said.

She thinks she's so funny.

And you know what? She really is.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

At the Fair

The Clackamas County Fair... a small-town fair, not big enough to warrant a ferris wheel, much to our disappointment, but big enough for the Oscar Meyer Weiner Mobile to make an appearance.
We took the train tour...
Watched the Bunny-Rabbits show off their agility skills...
Looked at strange and beautiful and cute and stinky animals...
Admired random collections...
And the Fourth Doctor's scarf...
One lonely hooked rug (no cross-stitch to speak of, and the quilts were not my taste)...
Big strings of balloons against a blue sky...
We were there to help our friend and forestry mentor in the OSU Extension Service booth for a 3-hour shift. This duty was enjoyed by the Farmboy, while I roamed about with the kids.
The booth was positioned in the shade of this beast...
After the Farmboy was finished talking to people about trees and gardening, we walked over to the food village and got ourselves some hand-dipped corndogs with mustard and lemonade. Mmmm-good.
The almost-second-grader gave me my most favorite moment of the day, as he bravely went on the roller-coaster all by himself and spent the entire ride laughing with delight. Not just a little laugh, but a from-the-gut, out-of-control laugh that everyone from yards around could hear over the noise of the machinery.
The almost-Kindergartener wasn't ready for the roller coaster, and didn't want to go on a ride by herself, but had her eyes on a giant teddy-bear ride. She convinced her big Brother, even though he thought it looked too much like a little kid ride.
He doesn't realize that he's still a little kid. Shhh... its a secret.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

At Sundown

It has become my favorite time of day for taking photos. There aren't many objects in my little world that don't look somehow radiant as the sun beams over its shoulder... perhaps the recycling bin or garbage wouldn't look so lovely, but I guarantee it would still glow all around the edges and take on a more ethereal appearance.
Weeds, berries, garden stakes, growing vegetables, and flowers gone to seed, all become equals in the sun's fading light. Her last evening gift, a generous farewell, should she be hidden from sight on the morrow.
I never thought Angry Birds and Mario could look so captivating, yet there they are, basking in the sunset, somehow looking better than their usual selves.
Its a brief window each evening, when everything takes on a lazy, honeyed costume. In those brief moments, if you still yourself, quiet your busy mind, and just sit. Rest. Breathe. That discipline is the only way to possibly stretch out time and make it feel like an eternity, like those golden moments can fill out each iota of a second to its maximum and last as long as it is allowed. Try it sometime. Let the honey flow into your soul, breathe in the beauty that the Creator put in place just for you, know that all the crazy busy activity that makes up your life are really nothing next to the ancient rotation of the Earth, and the call of Eternity.
That last photo is for you, a wallpaper to put on your desktop to remind you to breathe at the end of the day. Left click to open it, then right click to save it to your computer. For your personal use only, please, but feel free to invite others to come get it for themselves.