Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Trip To California

Finally, I am able to share some of the pictures I took while driving from Vancouver Island to the Monterey Peninsula.

My friend and I drove as far as Vancouver, WA and stayed the night.  The next morning, we met a young woman friend of mine at Lewis & Clark College.  After she took us on a tour of the beautiful campus, we drove to the Portland Japanese Garden, known as one of the best outside of Japan.  We had considered visiting the Rhododendron Gardens in Portland, but the blooms had not even begun by early April, so the Japanese Garden was a better choice.

This was our first view upon entering the garden.

There was a tour going to the right, so we chose to go left.

The moss was gorgous, everywhere.  Those rainy days in Portland are good for something!
You can click on any of these pictures to see an enlarged view. 
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This cherry tree was just beginning to bloom:

Here is proof:

Inside the tea house, there was a display of Japanese flower arranging;

I would like to study this form, which allows the use of non-native (to Japan) materials.

Just outside the entrance to the garden was another cherry tree (I think) in full bloom, reasuring us that spring was really coming.

And, under this tree, way on the other side, a little drama was unfolding.  I was concerned, so walked over to observe (and intervene if necessary).

The little boy and girl were taken with this lovely, patient black lab.  And their parents were not paying attention.  But I was!  One never knows how much even a patient black lab can tolerate.

Just as I was about to intervene, the parents called these two away and the lab settled back down to wait for his/her owner.  Just look at that face!  "Help me, someone!"

All in all a lovely visit to Portland.  From there, we drove about 60 miles along the Columbia River Gorge.  But that is for next time.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


This is the first day I am able to access the internet from our new home.  Seemed like it took forever.

Now all I have to do is find where the two cables are that connect my phone and camera to the computer and I will be able to show you some pictures...

Meanwhile, I have work to do to finish grading my online class.  Oh, I haven't told you that I teach a class online for the college I worked for before retiring six years ago.  I do love teaching.  And being able to do it from home, whenever I want, is just great!

The class is a lecture class about fitness and wellness and includes 15 Behavior Change Workbook Activities which are designed to help one to make a behavior change (anything that is reasonable to be accomplished in the eight weeks of the class, and some things that will take much longer).  Examples include finding ways to meet new people, quitting smoking, eating more fruits and vegetables, anger management, stress management, time management, etc.

Sharing the skills needed in order to make life changes is really rewarding.  And I had better get to it!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Just a short note to let you know that I am now in California.  The last month has been difficult, but with the help of numerous people, I have made it through.  Friends are vital to our survival.  And we don't really know how important they are until things get rough.

I now have good friends in two places in the world.  I am sure some of you have learned how to keep friends even at long distances.  Share those experiences with me, will you?  These friends are keepers, for sure!

We will take possession of our new house tomorrow.  Nesting should help me to feel a sense of connection that is lacking right now.  We expect the moving van to arrive about the middle of the month and then the unpacking will begin in earnest.

As I sit at my computer (or rather a somewhat random collection of cast-off peripherals connected to my computer), my little black kitty Chloe is curled up in my lap purring.  I do think she missed me!  I sure missed her.