OFFF : Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival

I love going to this Festival.  I try to go every fall, but as anything, it depends what’s happening in our lives and our weekend.  But this time, it worked perfectly, once again.

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It was a day to myself.  I was able to go see every table, once and twice and three times if I wanted to. No hurry to be done or to go onto something else.  Sometimes is good to have a day to oneself.  Homeschooling, it is not often I get to do that, nor is it something I crave often, but I took this day to just do that, be by myself and enjoy the sights and a beautiful afternoon.

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And I bought something I really didn’t need, but have been wanting for quite some time.

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So I bought this yarn bowl.  There were 3 stands with them.  Two with bowls made of ceramics, and I looked at them all.  Touched them, saw the glazes, the twirls and turns.  I even looked at the wooden ones…. oh wow… some day I will graduate to a wooden one, because I just love wood and the warmth and the natural feeling of it.

DSC_0019 copyBut this bowl, won my heart.  I am not sure what I’ll do when I change and be done with my project, because it won’t match anymore.  Well? Maybe I’ll have to get another one to match that one!  Because, yes, you might wonder, one does need to match the yarn bowl to the project.

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I loved all the colors, the textures, the shapes, so much goodness all in one place.  I’m ready to dig into my stash of wool and yarn, and continue with my spinning, and start knitting something warm for the cooler days.  Oh all the possibilities.  A day of inspiration.

rediscovering hula hooping

I don’t know about you, but it seems like we’ve always had hula hoops around the house.  For one reason or another and being used in different ways.  They’ve been places to jump on, as a way to form an island and see how many people would fit in, as rings, let’s see if it stays round if we pull on it, you name it, they’ve been used for that.

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And there’s been some used for what they are meant to do.  Hula hooping.

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As of lately and probably because we have new round hula hoops, they’ve been re-discovered.  Maybe because they are finally not too big for them, and still heavy enough that they actually work pretty good.

DSC_0118 copy DSC_0121 copyThey are quickly learning to do tricks.

DSC_0107 copyAlways something new to do with them.

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It always puts a smile in our faces.

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It never fails.

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in the house

DSC_0007 copyThere’s been lots of cleaning and re-arranging.  I moved the chairs around, and everyone was OK with this change.  That’s always good for this family.  After a while I need change, even little ones like this, but the rest of my family, don’t feel this need at all, but I am glad they go along with me.

DSC_0048 copyThe kids in the kitchen… I love it.  And wonder how much longer will it be until the height difference is the other way around.

DSC_0174 copyBefore.

DSC_0012 copyAnd after.  I know, not much difference, except that now the white is actually white, not worn out and stained and marked from being used every day by four people for the last 13 years, and holes patched makes it look a little better too.

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A fresh coat of paint makes it feel cleaner and crisp.  And we changed the light fixture to one light, we don’t need more light than that being such a small bathroom.

DSC_0176 copyI did leave our little joke on the window… for some reason, it’s so funny every time.

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It’s cold enough that a comforter and someone to snuggle with is a good thing.

one last swim and jump

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We headed to the lake one more time few weeks ago, when the temperature still said 80’s.  DSC_0035 copy

A beautiful sunny day.  No wet suits needed this time.

DSC_0133 copyA little hike to see the  other side of the lake, and a favorite spot for the kids.

DSC_0132 copyA mushroom sight on the way.

DSC_0036 copy DSC_0037 copy DSC_0038 copy DSC_0039 copyAnd then to the spot.

DSC_0042 copy DSC_0043 copy DSC_0044 copy DSC_0045 copy DSC_0046 copy DSC_0077 copy DSC_0079 copy DSC_0083 copyThey spent hours. 

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Laughs.  Real laughs. The ones you can hear from the other side of the lake.

DSC_0097 copyMemories.  Beautiful memories.

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Stories.  Lots of stories we heard on the ride home.  And the day after.

DSC_0102 copySummer memories.

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Friendships strengthen by these moments spent together. 

DSC_0106 copy DSC_0109 copyOne more time. 

DSC_0110 copyBecause we can. 

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Yes, laughs and smiles and memories.

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‘Til next time.

in the kitchen

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I guess this one is not quite in the kitchen yet. Mark is getting the beans off the plants and shelling them to store for later.  This year, He and Siena planted lots of beans.  We have so many green beans, and dried beans.  I think it’s going to be good.

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I also dried 20 pounds of pears for winter snacking.

DSC_0004 copy DSC_00133 copyThey looks so pretty once dried against the light.  Doesn’t it?

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I also dried plums.

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Some delicious onces some friends gave us.  So good.

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A neighbor down the street has a beautiful, big Lemon Verbena plant.  She’s had it for years, and it grows so healthy and so big every year.  Last year I asked her if I could have some leaves, because  found a recipe for a simple syrup.  It was delicate flavor and it was good.  So this year I asked her for few more leaves, and she came back with her trimmings getting the plant ready for the winter.  Oh thank you, thank you!  I am ready for some syrup making but also for lots of tea.

DSC_0013 2 copyGrapes are my favorite fruit I think.  I guess, I love other fruits too, but I can have grapes any time, I think.  Sometimes I feel like oranges, or watermelon, or an apple.  But grapes are always good, I think.  Some from the store, some from friends.

DSC_0089 copyThe beginning of a meal. Home grown elephant garlic, and some good hot peppers.

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I feel lucky to have some of the neighbors we have.  These beautiful, delicious figs come from another neighbor who has two fig trees.  This is the first time I’ve really ad them fresh, and I think I’m in love with them.  They are so sweet, so delicate.

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I’ve received two big bags of them, as present.

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I even had enough to make some jam.

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Another new recipe for this summer, and it is so good.

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Especially with warm, homemade bread.  The first loaves of the season. The oven can be turned on once again.  Everyone is happy here at home.

DSC_0085 copy DSC_0086 copyI love the colors and textures showing in our pantry.


DSC_0080 copy DSC_0081 copyI did a little more indigo dyeing few weeks ago, and Siena placed these thrifted newly dyed goodness to use right away.  Adding a little more blue (still) to our backyard.

DSC_0003 copyNot as much bike riding as I hope I’d do, but maybe when the weather cools off a little and we have a new routine.

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DSC_0027 copyOn a sunny day few weeks ago, we decided to clean out the freezer/canning room.  Well, it wasn’t so much we wanted to clean the freezer room, it was that we were getting a new freezer, and since that was coming out, why not take everything else out, right?

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DSC_0031 copyOur freezer was mostly making ice, leaving us with little space for storage of food.

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And as things go, to get the new freezer in, bigger than our 20-year old one, we had to get our canning shelf out, so we could turn the freezer around, to be able to open its door, to make it fit in the room.

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And so, we decided to clean the whole room.  Dust, wipe off walls, floors, shelves, etc.  It needed it anyway.

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Photo taken by Lucas.
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Photo taken by Lucas.

DSC_0022 copy DSC_0025 copyBut seeing all these cans of goods.  Tomatoes, tomato sauce, salsa, apple sauce, pickles, pickled beans, peaches… oh… so good.  Made us feel proud of all the canning, as we lined them up on the table and then on the shelves, wiped, lined up, ready for the winter months.  Made me feel ready.  And it also made me feel rich.  I feel lucky.


DSC_0079 copyOutside, it feels like fall.  I can feel it in the air.  It’s coming. I love it.

Playing in the Columbia

DSC_0003 copyThis summer we had a chance to go boating on the river with some friends.

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We met at St. Johns Bridge and got the boat in.

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We don’t go to that side of town very often, but that bridge is so beautiful, I could have spent more time just watching it.

DSC_0015 copyBut I think everyone would agree that in the river was as much fun. We don’t go boating very much (never), so it is always fun to go with friends.

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The Willamette River, a beautiful place.

DSC_0022 copy DSC_0028 copy DSC_0031 copy DSC_0027 copy DSC_0032 copyThen on the Columbia River.  You can see here Sauvie Island, where we often go to swim and pick fruits.

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Beautiful rivers.

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We found a beach (on the Washington side) across from where we usually go swimming (on Sauvie Island, in Oregon).

DSC_0049 copyWater.  Friends. DSC_0045 copyNature.  DSC_0054 copySmiles. Laughs.  DSC_0057 copy DSC_0048 copyTreasures. 

DSC_0059 copyFun.

DSC_0063 copy DSC_0062 copy DSC_0065 copy DSC_0069 copy DSC_0076 copyThumbs up.  Ready to go.

DSC_0080 copy DSC_0092 copySmiles.

DSC_0095 copyLaughs. 

DSC_0097 copy DSC_0101 copy DSC_0110 copySmiles.

DSC_0121 copyLaughs. 

DSC_0129 copy DSC_0075 copyNaps.

DSC_0142 copyDSC_0150 copyFun. 

DSC_0152 copy DSC_0160 copyJumps. 

DSC_0164 copyMemories.

DSC_0167 copyTired smiles. 

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What a day. Fun. Fast. Slow. Crazy. Sunny. Warm. Wet. Sandy. Exciting. Summer.  Spent with wonderful friends, friends they’ve known each other their whole lives.  Thank you!

how to jump off a rope swing

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Find a safe rope tied to a tree, over a lake that is deep.  A spot where you can’t touch the bottom when you jump in.  No rocks or branches sticking out anywhere from the tree or the lake.  A place, completely safe is a good thing.  The rope, tied tight by someone who knows how.

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Or find one that is tied safely, by someone nice who left it for everyone to use up at the lake. Get the rope (with a paddle maybe.)  Hold on tight.  Smile.

DSC_0057 copyLet yourself go.  Smile.

DSC_0058 copy DSC_0059 copyLet go of the rope.  Smile.  

DSC_0048 copyCatch your breath.

DSC_0060 copyGet wet.  Enjoy.

DSC_0049 copyHold on.

DSC_0050 copyLet go.

DSC_0052 copyHold on. Straight legs.

DSC_0055 copyLet go. Curvy legs.

DSC_0067 copyLet go.  Curvy legs.

DSC_0075 copyLet go. Criss cross.

DSC_0047 copyLet go.  Anyways you want.

DSC_0081 copyLet go.

DSC_0082 copyLet go.

DSC_0061 copyRepeat. 

DSC_0071 copy DSC_0072 copy DSC_0073 copy DSC_0074 copy  And let go. Enjoy.