Sunday, August 13, 2017


Hello my blog friends! 

Lake Billy Chinook - 7 miles from my home.
I'm overwhelmed (with photos of my trips)...(and when I say "trip", it could be going less than 10 miles from my home)......... I'm behind in posting (about my trips).... I'm stuck as to what to post first (about my trips)..... I don't know where to start! 

Railroad trestle, right in the  heart of Madras!
I have so many photos of beautiful, gorgeous and scenic areas that I've taken during the last year or so and that I haven't posted yet..... and I just keep putting it off because I don't know what to post first.

Some places are close to home, others further away.

At first I thought... well I should just do it in chronological order, right? But then it would take forever to get caught up to now! (and there are other more current things I would like to post NOW). What's a girl to do. I can't just NOT post them!

Lake Simtustus, about 10 miles from Madras, Oregon.
After much thought... I just decided to post some of my best photos, in no particular order, of places I've visited, either alone or with family... so I can mark these trips off my list of "blog posts to do"! 

Petroglyphs.... about 12 miles east of Madras.
So............ here goes!  First... places close to where I live......

1.  Haystack Reservoir in Madras, about 10 miles from where I live. A beautiful spot for kayaking, fishing and camping. We live in a dry area, so is so nice to have a lake close by. This was last summer with my sister and a friend. The last photo is the camp area.. very dry looking, right? but a beautiful view of Mt. Jefferson to the west.

2.  Smith Rocks State Park to the south of Madras, about 20 miles... it's a hiker and mountain climber's paradise! The Crooked River flows around the rock formations in a beautiful little canyon. These were taken last March when my son came to visit from Astoria, Oregon.

Mt. Jefferson to the west... in the distance.

Do you see the guy in the red T-shirt walking on the rope across the canyon? wowzer!

Close up of rope walker. I'm amazed.

Crooked River down below.. see the path along it and those tiny little people walking? Gives you some perspective of where I'm standing. Stunningly beautiful...........

Rock climbers heading straight UP the wall! (close-up)

Climbers from a distance.

Starting up top where I'm taking these pictures, you can walk way down a winding trail to the river and across a bridge, and then hike up the other side, way to the top of those rocks!  I stayed at the top!

That's my son and his girlfriend and her son on the bridge (this side.. .little cluster of black and pink).

Hiking back up is not for the weak of heart (and breath)!!!
Now for some further away trips...........

3.  Rife Lake and Mayfield Lake in Mossyrock, WA. This was a trip I took in June of this year to go visit my (miracle worker) chiropractor.  I used to live in this area back in 2000 and 2001. It's about a 5-1/2 hour drive from Madras, up into SW Washington state (you take I-5 North, then cut off on Hwy 12 east that heads to Yakima). Gorgeous, green area, but they get lots of rain!

Rife Lake between Mossyrock, WA and Morton, WA. 

Rife Lake - boaters love it, but was mid-week and no boats out! I was really surprised.

Campground at Mayfield Lake by Mossyrock, WA. Oh boy did I love the green there!

Mayfield Lake - lovely place to sit in the evening. Visited with my sister and brother-in-law.

Fresh local strawberries from the fruit stand down the road. 

4.  Beacon Rock State park in Washington, just across the Columbia River from Oregon. The Columbia River divides Oregon and Washington. I just had to stop here on the way home from my trip to see my chiropractor in June. I hadn't been there for a along time. There is a (very precarious) hiking trail to the very top! My oldest son hiked it once with his dad when he was about 8 years old. I never have.

Beacon Rock is about the third largest monolith (single rock) in the world!

This is an inlet of the Columbia River, which flows "mightily" as they say, beyond the trees.

Beacon Rock is in the distance. This is a view of the Columbia River and Beacon Rock (to the east) from a high spot just east of Washougal, WA where I used to live (Cape Horn is an area on a very twisty and narrow road around a rock cliff!). Washougal is east of Vancouver, WA about 20 miles.

Looking down into the beautiful farms and pastures from Cape Horn, the viewpoint I was standing on (that looks east to Beacon Rock).

Nature is not only what is visible to the eye --

it shows the inner images of the soul --

the images on the back side of the eyes.

Edward Munch (1863-1944)
Norwegian painter and printmaker

The mighty Columbia River.
5.  Cascade Locks, Oregon Marine Park on the Columbia River. This was during my trip to my chiropractor in June. Cascade Locks has actual "locks" where the ships that come up the river have to go through. There are two or three Sternwheelers that traverse up and down the Columbia River from Portland, Oregon east up the Columbia River to destinations east of The Dalles, Oregon (going into the dry country). 

I'm in the park looking East to the town of Stevenson, WA. This is a beautiful park where the Sternwheelers dock and take on loads of people who want to travel the Columbia River. 

Very popular fishing spot, but always windy here!

The Bridge of the Gods in the distance, with a big barge coming up the river. It makes a big turn as I take pictures, and doesn't come up through the locks.

Oh it's all so green and lovely and high mountains line the gorge on both sides.

Fish ladders used by the Indians for their Salmon fishing. They sell their catches in Cascade Locks at roadside stands and at one of the largest restaurants in the area. 
I think that's enough photos for one post. I just love capturing images of our beautiful country, maybe a perspective that no one else has seen with their eyes! 

Oregon and Washington are a photographer's paradise, and I can travel less than 10 miles from my home to find some of the most awesome works of Mother Nature in the Pacific Northwest!

Enjoy the weekend friends! It's still HOT here!

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Quick and easy cards (again!).......

Every now and then I just get a bee in my bonnet to make some really quick cards.. just for the heck of it.. and of course, it always "inspires" me when I NEED some thank you cards after my birthday or Christmas! (and I just had my birthday in late June, so was in need of thank you cards). I do have some pre-made thank you cards, but I wanted to use my Sizzix dry embossing machine, so I lugged it out and played. It's always fun to make something new.

I love the look of embossed papers. Isn't that pretty (below)? I used a floral embossing folder and ran it through my Sizzix machine using some pre-cut 3-3/4" x 5"  pretty free digital (rose gold) papers that I printed onto white cardstock, compliments of Free Pretty Things for You. I LOVE her beautiful digital papers. She offers free papers, and also has some you can purchase in her Etsy store.

I already had some colored card bases, so all I needed to do was cut my papers to size, leaving a 1/4" border, and then run each one through my Sizzix. Behind each "matt", I put a doily that I had cut in  half, just for a little interest. And voila! Here's what I came up with:

White gold rose on dark puple.

I added some clear Stickles glitter to the leaves and a few of the roses.

Palest of blue gold roses on a white card.

Light pink and gold roses on pink card.

Sorry about my name! It looks like Greek! I doubled over it with my watermark but was too lazy to redo it......tsh... tsh. this was a cream gold rose on purple card.
To do something different, I used a kraft card and envelope, and some pretty kraft paper for the matt that had this foiled dark pink/purple. I didn't emboss this one and added a polka dot paper I had behind it, for a little  pop.  The metal flower came from my son's girlfriend. She makes jewelry, and for my birthday she sent me a box of all sorts of bling and flowers and parts of old jewelry, etc. What a thrill to get that! This thank you card actually went back to her, with one of her pieces of bling on it.

On each envelope, I gussied it up with a strip of matching paper (except on the kraft envelope). The little labels I made using one of my label cutting dies, and then stamped the words on it with Onyx black Versafine ink. Wanted to keep it simple, right?

As usual, my "quick and easy" cards took me a little more time than I had planned, but I enjoyed every minute I spent wrapped up in my little world of papers and ink, scissors, embossing, and glitter!

OTHER STUFF..............

Yes.. I had my birthday on June 29th and it was a fun and special day.... only my hubby and me..... but my 3 sisters, and my son, called me, and I had gifts to open in the morning, afternoon and evening (most came by UPS and most were things from my wishlist!) I love having a wishlist on Amazon!

The gift bags from Amazon were beautiful!

Got the book Sewn Gifts, from Helen Philipps, that I've been wanting forever (thank you sister)!! She has the most awesome blog..... full of color and delight, and sewing, and crocheting, and gardens........ is published in magazines and has published these wonderful books.  She's such an inspiration to me. She lives in England and I so enjoy her. Take a peek at her blog here.

I also received her other book (thank you again sister!) entitled Patchwork Gifts. I'm just swooning as I look through these books. I want to make everything!  I also received Mollie Makes Crochet, another wonderful book that I've been wishing for.

My sisters definitely KNOW how much I love pink!

And to top it all off.... hubby made me dinner and the most wonderful gluten free, homemade prune cake with white buttercream frosting! My mom always made me homemade prune cake on my birthdays, for many years.  What a nice end to a fun and special day......

It's hotter than heck here and this coming week going to be above the 100's. That's when I stay inside and craft and bake!

Happy weekend!

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