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Monday, July 26, 2010

Another Wild Weekend!

Just in case you thought I'd gone crazy after my last post, I wanted to share what I did Saturday...A friend and I caught the bus in Monroe and rode up the pass on Highway 2 to Gold Bar to check out Gold Dust Days...The bus ride was nice, as the highway 2 traffic is quite intense on a sunny Saturday, and we were both happy to enjoy the scenery without worrying about the other drivers...Gold Bar is a small town, and it seemed that everyone had turned out for the festivities! We missed the parade, but got there in time to see the Civil War reenactors shoot off the cannon. The setting was beautiful, even if no Civil War battle ever got close to Washington...however, there WAS a ship called the USS Tahoma that was part of the Union Navy blockade! Tahoma was the name given to Mount Rainier by some of the indiginous Pacific Northwest tribes.
Darlene and I wondered through the classic car show entries, watched kids enjoy horseback rides, shopped the craft booths, and watched a bellydancing tribute to the Lennon Sisters - to "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" !!!
We also stopped at the Washington Prospector's booth and for $5, purchased a bag of sand and a goldpanning lesson. We each brought home 6-8 flecks of gold, and think we should get a bit of gear to stick in our packs...Gold Bar got it's name for a reason.
And we still made it back to Monroe in time to hit several of the garage sales we'd seen from the bus! My personal best was about $50.00 of Pampered Chef tools for $ even better deal than the gold flakes! Burgers at Red Robin and a quick stop at an antique shop completed our day. Summer in Washington is good!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Not My Usual Thing...

Friday night, biker bar, heavy metal band...never thought I'd lead a post with that combo. A bunch of us from work gathered at Pete's in Carnation to celebrate with a friend who's decided not to do the New York to Washinton commute any longer...Although we only saw Dan a couple of times a year, it's going to seem strange to work here without him. Of course there's still e-mail and FaceBook, which is how we ususally communicate anyway, and I know that his family will appreciate the fact that he's not flying across country for work anymore. So, although I'm more of a George Strait, Gary Allen, David Ball,
Steve Wariner kind of girl, I went along for the party...Pete's is where Wilderness Awareness folks gather in Carnation. The food is good -bacon burger and fries for me, with vegetarian fare for some of the others - and I can drink a rootbeer out of a brown bottle and not look too out of place. We did not know it was Metal Night until we got there...and since we grabbed a couple of tables outside in the courtyard, the music wasn't too annoying...until we got ready to leave...5 minutes inside the bar while I paid for my meal was more than enough for this country girl. Once I can hear again, I'm gonna plug some hard core country into my CD player and apologize to my brain.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Big Leaf Maple

Check out the size of the leaf on the Big Leaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) tree! I used to think I knew what big trees looked like. One of the most surprising things to me when I moved to Washington state from Missouri was how big the trees can be. I've enjoyed local honey from bees feeding on the flowers of this tree, and the flowers themselves make a nice additon to a salad, or a trail snack. Yesterday I noticed that someone (a squirrel, I expect) has been cutting leaves and twigs from the BLM at my sit spot. I bet they are trying to get the fat seeds!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Not So Traditional Basketry

While I enjoy doing traditional crafts, sometimes it's fun to just look in the sewing box and see what materials I have and experiment with what I find. This quiver is made with the same coiling technique that I've used to make pine needle baskets. I used white cotton clothesline, fine blue crochet thread, and some fancy fuzzy blue fiber I found on sale years ago. Note the vase-like curves...I still need to practice keeping the same tension. Or perhaps stop trying to watch movies while I work.

My Favorite Fiction Authors and Books

  • Suzanne Arruda- the Jade del Cameron mysteries: "The Mark of the Lion" "Stalking Ivory", "The Serpent's Daughter", "The Leopard's Prey" and "The Golden Cheetah"
  • Ken Goddard - "Balefire" and others
  • Stephen White - the Dr. Alan Gregory books are all great. "Kill Me" is my favorite.
  • Harlan Coben - anything he writes is great
  • Elizabeth Peters - Amelia Peabody mysteries

My Favorite Nonfiction Authors and Books

  • "Coyote's Guide to Connecting With Nature" by Jon Young, Ellen Haas and Evan McGown- 2nd edition coming soon!
  • Gavin De Becker - "The Gift of Fear"
  • "Deep Survival" by Laurence Gonzales- the best survival book I've ever read! Not a how-to, its more of a who does,and why.
  • Candice Millard - "The River of Doubt -Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey"
  • Anything that starts with "Peterson's Field Guide To..."
  • Tom Brown, Jr. - "The Tracker" and others
  • Mark Elbroch - "Mammal Tracks and Sign" and "Animal Skulls"