Sunday, May 15, 2016

Birthday Dogs Getaway, The Sandpiper Beach Resort, Day 1

On May 12th, Nim turned 6, and on May 15th, his GSD friend, Jack, turned 4. In celebration of the pups and both of us desperately needing to get away, Courtney and I hit the coast for the The Sandpiper Beach Resort, in Pacific Beach, WA.

(Photo credit Courtney)

Getting out the door for a trip is never without issue. In my case I had to make sure I got some homework submitted and the cats settled. Also, if I know I am going somewhere that I can't possibly die if I forget something, I tend to be pretty last minute in my packing.

We hit the road around noon, and got stuck in traffic around Tacoma which is pretty much Tacoma's normal state. The longer I drove, the more I relaxed. By the time I hit Aberdeen I was already in a completely different state of mind. Long overdue.

(Photo credit Courtney)

We immediately hit the beach once we had roughly moved our supplies into our rooms. This would turn out to be the one really sunny day. While Jack is a seasoned beach dog, Nim is not. Nim had 2 top concerns:

  1. Why was he not allowed to catch ocean birds?
  2. How does one go to the bathroom on the beach?

As you can see from the above photo, Nim lost long line privileges after day one. That photo makes the battle look a lot more tame than it was. I guess I can be glad that at the supposedly mature age of 6, Nim still can play like a puppy.

Jack and Courtney are playing in the surf in the background. :) There will be better photos of Jack and Nim in a later post.

I have been wanting to go to the Sandpiper for years since a friend of mine talked about it (she goes for quick getaways to the Sandpiper regularly). Now that I have been there, I wish I hadn't waited so long.

The pace of the weekend was exactly what I needed and when it was time to check out I was truly sad I didn't have a day or two longer to stay.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

North Fork, Sunday Lake Trail, and Moth Photobomb

Today I made a very last minute decision to head out the North Fork. It was so last minute that I actually left the house planning to go somewhere else but then I stopped for gas and changed my mind.

Nim had his head out the window most of the drive in, ears flapping...

I decided to get all the way back to FR 57 which is where the trail heads for Bare and Lennox are. I now know that road is currently closed. Hardly the first time, but it does add about 4 miles one way on either hike, which means those will be late summer/early fall hikes.

Then on the way back out I headed for the Sunday Lake trail head.

I knew there was no way I could cross the river and actually get to Sunday Lake this early in the season, but I was hopeful about the swamp. The swamp was deep and while I contemplated wadding, I decided to try the latest "boardwalk" which was far better than it usual is.

With that, the swamp was crossed and we were on our way!

I never get tired of this rock face. I think what was calming for me is that the North Fork really just hasn't changed much. It is an actively logged area, and that changes things, but other than that, much of the wilderness remains the same.

OK. I was SO excited about this photo:

My eye caught the moth as it went through the shot and I could sort of see on the camera screen that this photo might not be blurred beyond recognition, but once I got home and saw it in its full glory I couldn't be more pleased.

As expected, crossing the river wasn't an option for us at this time of year, but we had a fantastic hike there and back. On the way back we hit a VERY primitive trail that I have had my eye on before. We hiked it for awhile and then I gave up. I couldn't tell what direction the shooting was coming from and I hadn't brought any maps with me to get a sense where I was going. Another time.

I really generally avoid this area on the weekend and there was enough of the usual weekend weirdness going on back there that I wanted to keep us on task and out of trouble.

As you can see, the swamp is deeper than it appears. I am sure Nim probably ingested some tadpoles.

Check out these beautiful swamp lily pad flowers!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Leela and her Puppy

Hello May! The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, and I started another quilt. I am working on another Bonnie Hunter free pattern: Oklahoma Backroads!

For me, this is a little more controlled scrapping than usual - in that I went the all brown theme for the "lights." The photo is terrible due to lighting, but the colors really are all very pretty. I had to re-read and re-read to really wrap my brain around the assembly of the block, but I think it will go faster the more I make.

With Emile (orange), Leela is generally the reluctant snuggler. Usually it comes down to her not wanting to give up the electric blanket, stove, sunspot, whatever Leela deems hers...

With Nim there is such a love and attachment it really is kind of amazing to watch. When he is gone for the day, Leela seeks him out the second he is home. In the bed it would never occur to her not to touch him. She bites him when he doesn't do what she wants, and he patiently puts up with it all.

I find it funny that she would never, ever cuddle up to me like this. Apparently Nim and her speak a special language.

Tomorrow I will be doing my first workshare shift at Jubilee Farm in Carnation. I am looking forward to it. I am hoping maybe some of the farming techniques will make me a better gardener. :)