Memorial Weekend Road Trip

Okay, I finally got together some photos from my weekend. Some of these are snapshot quality, which I try to avoid in my blog, but I’ll get over it.

Early Friday morning, my friend Katrina and I headed south. This is just a typical Oregon scene.

I think Katrina actually took this one while I drove. This is how it looked over the pass. The roads were fine, though, thankfully.

I had to show a photo of Katrina to prove she was with me. πŸ™‚ This is when we stopped for lunch at a Subway in Weed, CA. There was some snow on the ground here, which was also surprising.

Rainbowy semis.

We arrived in Yuba City around 2:30 and went our separate ways. I was so tired that I was very lazy at my parents’ house that night.

For dinner, my dad nicely cut the corn off the cob. He does it because I’m whiny about eating corn on the cob (too messy!), but I think he and my mom probably enjoy it off the cob too. πŸ™‚ Come on, admit it.

Sorry if raw meat bothers you. I had specifically requested these steaks that my dad used to buy at Costco–they are all twirled up with stuff inside. But I didn’t realize my dad no longer has a Costco membership, so he made them himself! I just thought the fresh/uncooked version might be interesting to see.

And here they are cooked up. Deeeeeeeelicious.

Saturday morning. After asking my dad about whether he had purchased any new koi recently, he suggested we check out a koi farm about 30 minutes away (outside of Lincoln). These are all the pools with koi of various prices.

The man who owns the farm (a very nice and friendly guy who obviously loves koi) would scoop out our selections and other suggestions so we could examine them more closely before choosing what to buy. We bought two of these fish–the solid white one at the top we named Dovey. At the bottom there we bought that small yellow-headed one next to the larger orange one. I loved him so much! I named him Billy Idol. Aren’t all the fish so pretty? It’s especially apparent when you’re just focused on them in this blue bowl. Some have glittery backs and others almost look fake they’re so perfect and healthy.

We also bought two others–Creamsicle and Mexico–from a different pool, and I have a photo of at least one of them later on.

The scene near the koi farm.

After picking out fish, we went to lunch at Cilantro’s. I had the chicken sopaipilla. SO GOOD.

I like to go around taking photos of my parents’ yard, since they often have various flowers blooming.

One of their dogs, Rocky, likes to think this grass was planted specifically for him.

There were lots of hummingbirds.

Sorry for some of these repeats from the Instagram post!

There are lots of pond pictures because I was trying different times of day and angles. It’s very hard to photograph into water when you’re outside!

No, that’s not koi! It’s salmon, squash and more of that pinwheel steak. This was Saturday’s dinner.

You can feed koi several times per day in the summer.

Sometimes the birds use the pond for a bath.

This was a pretty shade of dragonfly!

Here’s one of the new fish, Mexico.

He’s the only one in the pond with blue on him (I think).

No, that’s not koi! It’s pork, green beans and cauliflower (my dad grilled it.. it was good!).

The jasmine smelled soooooooooooooooo good.

Thanks for looking through these! πŸ™‚ Happy June!



Well, it was cloudy today, so I couldn’t really see the eclipse. This was the best I could do. (It wasn’t actually that dark, I just had to turn down the exposure to get more definition in the sun’s shape.)

This is the most eclipsed I’ve seen the sun. I’ve only seen little bites out of it a couple of times over the years. But in 2017 there will be a total eclipse right over Salem! Hopefully I’ll get a good view, and it’ll be non-cloudy (it’s in August, so chances are good).

Did any of you see it?

ETA: My sister posted some photos from her vantage point down in Albuquerque, and they’re really cool!

Photo mix

Here are a few photos from the past month that I meant to post. This was a deer I saw at my place when I was really looking for beavers.

The next few are from work.

I’m a little obsessed with getting a good fern spiral photo. I think I’ll have to go to some old forest to find some really good ones.

I’m not usually into tilted photos, but I ended up liking this anyway.

Of course I had to use the rental camera on some hummingbirds.

A tad grainy, but that’s cropped down and the ISO is at 2500. It’s so nice being able to crank up the ISO!

Last hummingbird photo!

Switching gears (it always seems a little weird to mix nature and food photos, but I’m doing it anyway), here’s a crock pot dish I made the other day. It was fine and has potential, but there were various factors that hindered my enjoyment of it, most of them psychological (I was afraid I had left it out too long, that the salsa was too old, etc.). It’s a Thai peanut chicken dish, but I would like to try it again before I link you to the recipe.

And here were the Orange Creamsicle Cookies that I made for a couple of departments at work. I thought they were really good with a little tweaking. I added more orange zest, less white chocolate, and I let the dough hang out in the fridge for several hours so the flavors could marinate a bit. (Marie, I got this tip from that chocolate chip recipe you posted, which I still have yet to try.) Try them! They’d go well with tea. I wish I could make some right now.

Enjoy your week, everyone! Thanks for looking.

Testing out the rental

At work we rented a Canon 5D Mark II and two lenses for an event where we need an extra set of equipment. It’s for me to use, so I excitedly practiced with it today to get to know how to adjust the settings, etc. This is the sort of camera I’d love to have one day, after I find a sugar daddy. It’s sooooo nice! The camera and lenses together are so different from my current little Rebel XSi. (In a way, it’s probably bad for me to use these nice cameras and feel more discontent with mine!)

I’ve noticed these nicer lenses and cameras tend to result in more vibrant photos.

How cute are these? I love spirals in nature.

These were interesting–all the leaves had a ripple on them.

We have the rentals for five days so I’m going to try and get a ton of use out of them! Stay tuned. πŸ™‚

Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm

The other day I went to Woodburn for a work-related photo shoot. It didn’t occur to me until I was arriving that I should try and stop by the tulip farm before I left town. I hadn’t been in a couple of years, and going on a weekday is ideal (it’s so crowded on sunny weekends). I was grateful for the opportunity that lined up so perfectly with the work assignment and the peak of tulip season.

You would think a place so picturesque would be easy to photograph, but I have found that it’s really hard for me to get creative when I visit the tulip farm. I feel like all of my photos end up looking the same. The result is a lot of snapshot-quality photos that thousands of people have taken. Oh well, at least you’re getting a look at the place, if you’ve never been!

Hey, sexy.

I’d really love to take portraits here sometime. In fact, I was on the verge of asking strangers if I could photograph their kids. πŸ˜› I just didn’t want to creep anyone out or make them think I was just trying to trick them into purchasing photos from me.

Cool how the focus of this photo is the ditch. Oh me and my mad skillz!

Gosh, there must be over two dozen tulips at this farm! Perhaps it’s in the triple digits!

The first time I visited this tulip farm was in 2006. It was raining and miserable, but I had driven all the way out and was determined to get some photos. (This sounds like a Pop Up Video fact.)

Back then it didn’t seem to be as big of a production as it is now. They’ve added so many tents, stands and kid attractions that it kind of annoys me, but it’s still nice to be able to see so many tulips at once. I think I’ll just stick with weekdays any time I visit in the future. It’s cheaper that way, too.

This one’s probably my fav.

Have you been to the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm? What about another tulip farm? Tell us alllll about it.

This has been a very tulippy spring for me!


(And a little pink.)

We’re getting to that time of the year when the green reaches its peak. It makes rain and clouds more tolerable, and the clouds just made everything more vibrant. So today I took a few photos of a nearby golf course and the grounds by my place.

If I had to marry a color, of course I’d choose green.

There are so many shades! Something for everyone. Or all for me–that’s fine too.

Oh look, some of my future homes! I’ve always thought it would be awesome to live on a golf course. Or above one, in a mansion. πŸ˜‰

Now I’m home!

It was really windy today, so the blossoms were all blown off onto the water. Yesterday, I was imagining snow that’s made of blossoms, but then I remembered the cleanup factor that makes it less appealing to have piles of flower petals. So then I thought, what if in heaven there is snow that is like blossoms, but they melt? And they aren’t cold or made of ice. They’re more like cotton candy, without a sticky residue on the ground. And that’s my snow story. The end.

I also went to the tulip farm today (busy Wednesday!) and will show you a few photos later on. How are you? What’s been going on? Do these photos look dark to you?

Flowers (Deepwood Estate)

Okay, last installment of DE photos (until next time I go, of course). My flower photos are a bit on the predictable side. Shallow depth of field, lots of singled-out flowers, etc. Especially in this batch, as I was trying to get some petal detail. Next time I’ll try to be a bit more creative. (I say this half-heartedly.)

During most of my stroll around the gardens, I was thinking of my sister R, who loves tulips. Who doesn’t? Armload of purple tulips, please!

(I don’t even have purple tulip photos in this post, I just always
thought it would be beauty to have a big bouquet of them.)

Yes, these last two are very similar. I posted them both anyway!

Hi, Mom! You know all my orange flower photos are for you.

And sure, the peach too.

This is probably a weed. πŸ˜›

This picture is so clichΓ©! But I loved the color on this tulip.

Thank you for looking! Have a great weekend, everyone. πŸ™‚

PS Happy birthday to my childhood friend Jennifer, who may see this blog sometimes. And also to my friend Lori!

Various flowers

I have lots of pictures, but I wasn’t really sure how many to post at a time.
We’ll see what happens here. Most of these are flowers from Deepwood Estate, though some came from work or maybe even Bush park.

R, here’s another one of those camellias with its perfection. Only striped!

Not striped!

I had a good Easter. The fact that it was sunny made it a million times better than usual, but it was also a good balance of quietness and social time. Church was good, the day was good, and then I took Monday off and took some of these flower photos! All weekends should be three days.

How was your Easter?

Just Thursday

I am thankful for things, but this post will just be pictures. Like this one of a bunch of geese flying around.

Then there’s this vulture flying around.

He’s still flying.

Here are some flowers that are just staying on the ground.

It rained a tad.

I have some cute baby bird photos, but they’ll be on my Project 52 post this weekend. You can hang out on the edge of your seat for those.

Snow in the spring

Yesterday it was snowing steadily from before I woke up until after I went to bed. I think we got somewhere over 7 inches of snow, but I never saw the final measurement. I’ve only lived in Oregon for 6 years, but I don’t think this much snow after the first of spring is very common in the Willamette Valley!

I can’t say I minded this weather, even though it’s almost April. It seems everything is still blooming on schedule, so I welcome a change of scenery for photography and general enjoyment. πŸ™‚ Plus, at work we always need more snow photos, so it gave me a chance to add to the archives.

I have some photos from today that I’ll post later. Have a great Friday!