Monday, November 21, 2022

I went and did it......

I'm so mad at myself! I went and slipped on black ice last Thursday, Nov. 17th and landed flat on my back! I can't believe I didn't check the driveway better as I started to walk down to get the mail

Duh, it was 28 degrees out and we had had freezing fog the night before! But the sun was out and it looked totally dry.
 They should call it "invisible" ice, not black ice.

This is typing on my cell phone as can hardly use my keyboard....I fractured my left thumb at the base. Hand is in a temporary cast and have to go in a week to have it x-rayed again and maybe recasted. This is the first time in my life I've ever had a cast!

I went to ER on the Friday after the fall, as hand was really sore. My back hurt too. I also hit my head on the cement so wanted to be sure I didn't crack my hard head......I was pretty sure I was ok from that as I had no signs of a concussion.  Funny thing, my back didn't hurt that

much for the 1st two days, so I didn't get any pain meds. The doc offered but I thought, oh I'll do fine with Advil. NOT!!!

They did do X-rays at the hospital, and said no fractures that they could see.......but.....I just found out today that they did NOT x-ray my mid back area, which is where I told them I hurt the most, so I hope I can go have X-rays done for that area, once I can drive.
 I can't drive now as hurts too much getting in and out of the car.
Why they didn't do X-rays there I have no idea .

I've had horrible pain for the last 2 days. I finally gave in today and took a half of a pain pill I had left over from my gall bladder surgery 3 years ago! 

It did help...wish I taken it sooner......ah ah ah.....sweet relief.

And by the way, from now on, whenever I go outside, I'm carrying my phone with me and wearing a coat! It was no fun laying there on the cold ice, with no coat on, wondering how in the heck I was going to get up or get help! What do you think I did?????



Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Fossil, Spray... roadtrip fun

Are those town names? Oregon has such unusual names of little towns, especially in central Oregon!  Fossil, Shaniko, Spray, Dufur, Antelope, Burns, Hereford, Halfway, Alfalfa, to name a few.

When my son and his fiance visited me at the end of August, he and she wanted to take a long day trip, and explore some of these strange named little towns! I was so glad to oblige them...... and off we went! It was a gorgeous summer day, but VERY VERY HOT! Thank goodness for the A/C in their car!

Here's a map of the loop we made - it was around 250 miles and we didn't get home until dark!  Grab your coffee or tea as this is a long post!

First town: Antelope
This is pretty much a ghost town now.. there are only a few residents left, population 47!

The town used to be a stage station, originally incorporated in 1901. The height of its population was 249 in the early 1900's, down to about 39 in 1980. This little town has ALOT of history! Even if you live far away from Oregon, you may have heard about this town being taken over in the early 80's by Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and his followers. It made national news, and what subsequently  happened in The Dalles, Oregon concerning food poisoning of many of the residents of The Dalles, eventually shut the Rajneesh down! (I later lived in The Dalles in 1995 to 2000, so heard all about what happened).

From Wikipedia:
In the early 1980s, hundreds of members of the Rajneesh movement moved in and built a small city in previously unoccupied land they purchased. The Rajneesh cult members effectively took over the government of the city by outnumbering the original residents with new voter registrations. On September 18, 1984, a vote was held, and the city was renamed Rajneesh, Oregon. By 1985, after several of the Rajneesh movement leaders were discovered to have been involved in criminal behavior (including a mass food poisoning attack and an aborted plot to assassinate a U.S. Attorney), their cult leader fled the country as part of a negotiated settlement of federal immigration fraud charges, and the Rajneesh commune collapsed. On November 6, 1985, the city voted to revert to the name Antelope.

And so it is now Antelope again, and too bad it's such an abandoned little town. It is in a pretty location and far away from the crowds. I remember going therer a few times back before the Rajneesh came, and the town seemed quite lively and populated, with a cafe, store, gas station, post office and school. I always thought it would be a neat place to live if you wanted to live far away from any larger cities!

Next town: Fossil
What a funny name for a town right? But it is very close to the John Day Fossil Beds... very historic and well know throughout the Pacific Northwest. I, in fact, have never been to the fossil beds.. and we didn't stop by then either, as was so hot out.

On our way, we crossed over the beautiful John Day River which was a welcome respite! There was  hardly any traffic. Who says there aren't any areas left that are unpopulated? Well. this area of Oregon is VERY unpopulated.

It's quite desolate country and yet there are rock outcroppings and rivers and canyons that make up for the otherwise dry landscapes.

Was very hot here! We had bought some sandwiches from Subway, in Madras, so chose this spot (under the bridge) to eat our lunch.

In Fossil, we stopped at the very old cemetery. I walked around for a good 20 minutes in 100 degree + temperatures, but it was really fascinating. Some of the headstones were dated back to the early 1800's.

This is the usual landscape around Fossil, Oregon!

Withstanding time.

Such beautifully carved and intricate headstones!

The actual town of Fossil is population 473, so a little bigger in size. We had hoped to stop for ice cream, but nothing was open! It was a Monday.. so most things were closed, even the one small cafe. I've always wanted to spend a night in Fossil at the historic Fossil Hyatt House Motel, but we drove all around the town and couldn't find it!

I also wanted to check out the Wilson Ranches Retreat, which is about 8 miles northwest of Fossil. It's a dude ranch that is on my bucket list to visit.  But you know guys.... right? my son didn't want to go out of his way to go see it!  It was not on our route!

Photo compliments of Wilson Retreat Ranches website.
 Next stop Spray:

The drive from Fossil to Spray was actually quite beautiful. I had been that way years ago, but forgot how you go UP into some forest areas, and see wonderful big trees, firs and cedar, etc. Unfortunately, I didn't but one picture as we headed out of the forest (below), but it WAS beautiful. And then we came back out of the forest area, and followed the John Day River again for a few miles before we got to Spray.

I was sad to see that the usually WIDE John Day River, was really narrow and shallow on most of our drive along it. I can remember the last times I drove there, the river was way up the banks and flowing very swiftly!

In the town of Spray, which is not very populated (160), with just a few stores and a motel, we went to the river park, and spent a few hours at this very beautiful (and empty!) campground along the John Day River. My son and his fiance are genuine rock hounds, so she spent the entire time searching for unusual rocks and stones. She said she found petrified coral!

Petrified coral.

Brave young men jumping off the rocks across the river!

Beautiful clear water with a sandy bottom.. no rocks!

It was SO HOT! I just had to go in!

On to Mitchell and the Ochoco Mountains:
The rest of the drive was through some wonderful vistas.. up and down we went, around curves, into canyons and valleys, then back up to the top of the world it seemed! We drove past the "painted hills" (another well-known monument of that area), but I didn't take pictures, as it was by then starting to get to dusk. We were on a mission to get into the Ochoco Mountains before dark, as my son had never seen them!

Forest fire area by Mitchell, Oregon. So sad.

The town of Mitchell is just a wayside along Hwy 26.. a little store and gas station.  We stopped at a wayside a few miles further, as we were driving through the Ochoco's..... to take in the beauty there!

It was nice to be in the big trees again!

And onward back to Madras!
The drive back along Hwy 26 was nothing short of beautiful, gorgeous, stunning views, lots of trees and sky views. I had been that way a few times, but I always forget how wonderful it is! Compared to Madras, that is "big treeless", this was such a treat.

We went through the town of Prineville, which I really do like. It's a little bigger than Madras, and has more shops, restaurants, trees and rivers. It has a big fairgrounds and arena, that hosts rodeos, horse shows and bull riding events... and the Crooked River runs right through the town. I would love to have lived there instead of Madras, but I guess it was not in the stars, as my husband and I never could find a place there that we liked, in our price range, when we were looking to buy again back in 2015. So Madras it was.....

As we drove west towards the sun and home, the sky and mountains put on quite a show for us!

It was good to get home.  We had a very wonderful and memorable day! 

I'll cherish this day with my son and Terra. It absolutely goes into my "best memories" bank!



Saturday, October 29, 2022


Who ever thought that buying a pillow at a thrift store would have such an impact on me!

In August, I bought a sweet little pillow for my bed, with the words "you belong to the wildflowers". I thought, oh that is so pretty and just matches my colors.. and the saying is nice too!  And it was August, and wildflowers was such a great theme for that time of year!

It was brought to my attention, when I posted my "new" bedroom colors on my blog (by Connie at Crafty Home Cottage), that these were words from a Tom Petty song! Now.. I grew up with Tom Petty! I knew him well (by listening to his music)...........and had always loved his soulful voice. I had just NOT looked closely to all the words on the pillow.. and at the bottom "Tom Petty"! Boy talk about blind!

I decided I'd go listen to the lyrics of the song. I could relate to these words on the pillow, so I figured I'd also relate to the song.

Here are the lyrics... the words just rang out so near and dear to me. This song can mean many things to many different people...... it has several different meanings I'm sure. They would have meant something totally different to me, say 10 or 20 years ago... but now..... the words impact me much differently.

From American
Petty is drawing the song closer and closer to himself. Of course, he wanted to give solace to his listeners—any good songwriter does. But at the same time, he’s comforting himself, self-soothing. More specifically, at the time of this song’s release, Petty was in the midst of severe personal and professional change.

The creative process for “Wildflowers” actually spooked the songwriter at first. The song had come out so easily that Petty had surprised even himself.

“I just took a deep breath and it came out,” he said in a 2014 interview. “The whole song. Stream of consciousness: words, music, chords. Finished it. I mean, I just played it into a tape recorder and I played the whole song and I never played it again. I actually only spent three and a half minutes on that whole song. So I’d come back for days playing that tape, thinking there must be something wrong here because this just came too easy. And then I realized that there’s probably nothing wrong at all.”

Read/listen to the lyrics carefully...... what does this song mean to you?


You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
Sail away, kill off the hours
You belong somewhere you feel free

Run away, find you a lover
Go away somewhere all bright and new
I have seen no other
Who compares with you

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong in a boat out at sea
You belong with your love on  your arm
You belong somewhere you feel free

Run away, go find a lover
Run away, let your heart be your guide
You deserve the deepest of cover
You belong in that home by and by

You belong among the wildflowers
You belong somewhere close to me
Far away from your trouble and worry
You belong somewhere you feel free
You belong somewhere you feel free
~Tom Petty - 1994~

P.S. I have so much to post! I'm trying to get caught up in the order of what I've accomplished and done over the summer. More coming...........


Sunday, September 11, 2022

I did it!

I finally did it! One sweet night of camping with my Van! It was a "trial run" and all in all, I did pretty good.

I've named her BERTHA! She is old but very sturdy.

I had my trial run at my sister's house about 30 miles from me. She lives on a beautiful 5 acres, with some trees and views of the mountains in the Cascade Range of Oregon. She even has a hookup for electricity! It was perfect for my test run.

I haven't really touched the Van since my  husband passed last September. I still have a dream to do some camping with her... so I decided it was time to get her cleaned out, fixed up, freshened up and reorganized. I found my curtains and put them back up, made up my bed (to make it as cozy as possible), and packed a new tub with stuff I thought I might need, even if for only one night!

I moved in an old sewing cabinet with two drawers, and put it at the head of my bed, to place a little lamp on, my phone, etc. The drawers were to come in very handy!

Once I started the cleanup, I was more enthused about taking a little trip... but I first wanted to do a test run! I HAD driven it a few times over the last year, just to make sure it was mechanically sound, and it did well on the highway.

Here I am at my sister's, the last weekend of August, and the weather was perfect! It was the ONE day that wasn't 100 degrees or more! And the night temperature went down to a nice cool 48!

See that little step stool? Sure makes it easier to get in and out!

Since it was too dry to have a fire, my sister and I sat out by the firepit in the evening, and gazed into my candle!!! 

Next time I will bring more candles, as it's just not the same not being able to have a little fire for roasting marshmellows.  I'm looking into buying  a small propane firepit.. never knew they existed until recently!

And now I know what needs to be tweaked.... most especially, my bed was WAY TOO HARD. It's a new 4" foam mattress but was as hard as a brick. I'll need to remedy that before the next trip! And I couldn't find a few things, so need to get more organized. I would love to put in another little set of drawers to use.

Until next time Bertha!


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