Tag: Country

The Lull Between the Storms

Hey Everyone!

I am really trying to get back into hiking. I hadn’t really hiked in almost two years, so all the progress I had made went out the window. So I am starting all over working on building up my endurance. The hike I went on today was only 1.86 miles / 3 km hike and it kicked my butt. My hike gained 417 feet / 127 meters in elevation over the course of the first mile from where I started to the top of the mountain.

It was such a gorgeous day out. The trail in parts was a bit muddy, and other parts were dry. It had rained so much over the weekend (like 2+ inches in about 36 hours). Today was partially sunny and warm, so the woods smelled amazing and the birds were chirping. So besides the blister I got while hiking, it was an amazing day.

Like I said earlier I am trying to work on build up my endurance, so I can knock out these shorter hikes with ease, and start taking on longer and more challenging hikes.

With starting to build up my endurance, I am still working on breaking in my new boots. While I am still getting a blister here and there, one that I got on the way back down is a lot better than three that started forming on the way up on my first hike with my new boots. Overall I love my Danner boots and they fit so much better than the last pair I had. I have also put the fatigue fighter footbeds (ie insoles) back in now that I have started breaking them in and they are loosening up a bit. I think that was part of the problem with the new blister. With the insoles, the backs of my boots were rubbing a different part of my heel than they had previously, so I hadn’t thought to put moleskin on that spot.

Breaking in new hiking boots it a pain, but in the long term will hopefully be worth it if I can get the wear out of them, and have them last for a while. After I got home and got the leather cleaned up, I rubbed in some more boot dressing to help keep them from drying out, and to help them break in more.

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Being one with the Beach

Hey Everyone!

This past weekend I had gone to the beach, and was able to spend 2 nights there.

The past couple weeks have been crazy preparing for the weekend away. It got even crazier this past Wednesday when I started getting things together and putting my gifts together for the other ladies.

Friday morning before I left, I had mixed up a batch of gluten free, dairy free, egg free, cranberry orange pecan muffins to take with me.

I had managed to get out f the house by about 11:00 am Friday morning, from where I headed out to Astoria. I spent a few hours there, where I got lunch and went exploring. I stopped at Fort Clatsop, and walked around a bit.

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Once I was done exploring Astoria and the forts, I headed south, stopping in Rockaway to go for a walk on the beach.

I absolutely love the beach. The beach is one place I never get tired of seeing or being at. I have been going to the beach since I was a baby, and while I have a healthy respect for the ocean and its power, I love it. On some level I guess I take it for granted like I do the Mountains, but I am still in awe of the mountains and the ocean every time I see them. The part the I guess I take for granted is the fact that I know they aren’t going anywhere, and that they will always be there any time I want to go see them and visit.

Saturday afternoon, myself and some of the other ladies went down to the beach to go for a walk. We walked at least 2 miles.

I was kind of sad Sunday knowing that I was going to have to leave and return to the City life. While I was ready to be back to having my own room, I wasn’t ready to leave the beach.

I still miss the beach very much.

Late Spring Afternoon Drive

Hey Everyone! 

Today I just needed to get out of the house and go for a drive. 

I headed Southeast out through Clackamas County, out to Estacada, and a little way up into the Cascades.  

While I am definitely a beach person, I grew up living in between two mountains ranges, so I am used to seeing them everyday. Even though I am using to seeing the mountains everyday, I never get tired of seeing them. 

It was hot today, so, on the freeway I definitely used the AC, but once I was on the back roads I just rolled the windows down to get the breeze. It made for beautiful pictures. 


It’s days like this (as long as I have AC), that remind me why I love this part of the country. It is so pretty here, and it’s not all built up, and there are still many wide open, natural spaces. It’s not all concrete and steel here. 

Adventuring in the Rain

Hey Everyone!

Today was my day off, and I have spent far too much time in the city lately. Being able to get out of the city and into the country, and not take forever to get there is. One of the many reasons I am thankful for the urban growth boundary. The urban growth boundary means that it doesn’t take as long to get out into the country and the middle of nowhere, which is one of the things that keeps me going, and keeps me functioning in my current day to day life. 

In the past few weeks, I have really realized that this part of the country, the Pacific Northwest (and I include Alaska in that too, and if you know me, you understand why), is my home and where my roots are. I have definitely put down roots in this part of the country. I also love that I can have roots and wings – that means I am free to go and explore this great big world we live in, yet I always know where home is. 

Today was one of those grey, rainy days we are known for out here. Many people find it to be gross, disgusting, nasty and miserable. I honestly love it. I was also feeling a bit cooped up with work and everything that I just needed to go,  drive and explore.having it pouring down rain made the woods look different than they do on a clear sunny day. 


I had pulled into a parking lot in Colton to get my bearings and to see what way I needed to go, to get back to the City, as if was getting later and I still had errands to run. As I was getting ready to leave said parking lot, I saw this little church across the street, and had to take a picture. 

Heirloom Rose Garden

Hey Everyone! 

It’s been a little while since my last adventure. I was sick for a bit and then have been busy. 

This weekend has been a busy one, just with life. Yesterday I went up to Battle Ground, for an ItWorks team meeting. I didn’t realize how far into the country Battle Ground is. 

My mom had mentioned awhile back that she heard about this rose garden near St Paul (Oregon not Minnesota), and that she would like to go sometime. Well that sometime turned out to be this afternoon. So we took the drive from Portland to the Heirloom Rose Garden (it’s a little north of St Paul). It was really pretty to walk around and look at the roses. 

I was totally a happy camper, since I was outside and in the country. Life couldn’t have gotten much better. Well the only thing better would have been able to stay in the small town and not have to return to the city. 

Neat old (or new houses built with older architecture) houses in St Paul

Some of the Roses I saw today

Yes, I was standing in the middle of the two lane country road to get a picture. 
Catholic Church in St Paul

I went home! 

Hey Everyone!

One of my friends had told me earlier in their week that I should go do something spontaneous and fun today, so I did. I went home. I spent four amazing, tough, trying, all worth it years of my living in this amazingly beautiful area that helped shape who I am today.

It took me a couple years to really make it my home. By the end of my sophomore year of college, it was more my home that living in the big city ever have been. I made friends, and I had a second family. I still visit home quite often. I knew when I had to leave I was leaving my heart there. I love it there, and I don’t know when or how but I believe I will live there again one day. I took an additional drive that was typical of ones I took at the end of the term, to clear my head after a long stressful term. The foothills of the coast range is a beautiful place to take drives. I love thy I know that area so well that I can find my way back with ease. That area really helped me find out who I really am. So this adventure was a bit bittersweet and yet filled with hope that one day, hopefully soon I can call it home for real soon.

a Much Needed BEACH DAY!!!!!!!!!!!

Good Evening to All!

I haven’t been home very long at all from having spent most of the day at the beach. I met up with one of my friends, and we had headed out mid morning. I drove and got us to the beach just fine. We stopped at one of the State Parks in the area of Rockaway Beach, and walked along the beach and then back for about an hour and a half. We continued on to Cannon Beach, where we ate at Mo’s, and then went down on the beach again there, before heading north yet again to Seaside where i spent time wandering around the shops and then ending the evening on the beach again, freezing our butts off to watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean.

IMG_0020You don’t have to ask me twice to go to the beach. I also don’t mind driving. I am comfortable enough with going to the beach that even with not knowing for sure where I am going, I can still get around. If all else fails I know I have google maps on my phone. I also know that if the ocean is to my left I am heading north, and if it is to my back I am heading east.

Today’s goal was just to relax, and forget about real life for a while, and the mission was a success. Even with being a bit cold at the end of the day, I was totally in my zone, and I was someplace I love, doing what I love, enjoying life with a good friend. Even though, there are many times I go back to the same beaches, each time is different, whether it is with a different person, or different day, each time is different and unique.

I don’t know if I have mentioned it in previous posts, but for me, the beach, the ocean, the sights and sounds of them are calming and soothing to me. The ocean is a powerful force of nature that is a force to be reckoned with, and has claimed hundreds of thousands, if not more lives. That power has a beauty to it, as well as a calming force. It is like the sun, and the moon, it will always be there, and the waves will continually come crashing into the shore. The tides change, but the fact that the waves roll in, and there is the constant roar that is amazing, it is the original white noise machine.

I love the whole sand between the toes feeling, and coming home, and having to wash sand out of my hair for days even when I just sat on the sand, if even that. I love coming home and smelling like the beach, which is a combination of campfires, salty sea air, and having been outside. I love that smell.

IMG_0107Spending that much time with a good friend, and picking up where we had left off is also amazing. There are different dynamics with different friends, and it is amazing to be reminded on a regular basis on what it is like to have fun.

Having spent so much time outside, walking around, driving there and back, and swinging on the swing set I got a good workout in today. Being outside walking along the beach, breathing in the air, exploring, these are the kinds of days that bring out the best in me, and give me energy to get up each day.