In which I try not to work so hard and my dog is my co-pilot

Vacationing is actually kind of difficult for me.

Fox's first solo roadtrip with me--after 3 years together!

I'm good at taking time off from work and heading off into the wilderness.  That's never difficult.  

My problem is that I'm always looking around for some work that needs to be done in the place I'm visiting.

That's why, when my plans to head over to Spokane to help ride management put together the Crazy Daze ride fell through, I had to recalibrate.

I spent some time riding, of course.  

We aren't training for anything.  We go out on the trails and hang out.  

Oh, hey!  When you aren't training for anything, there's plenty of time
to search for chanterelle mushrooms along the trail.

I got a bunch of needful chores done around the Farm--non-exciting stuff like renting a wood splitter and processing a bunch of firewood so we can stay warm this winter.

I harvested some stuff from the garden.  The plums are getting ripe, the apples are almost ripe, the blackberries are almost done, and the beans are almost ready to harvest and dry, so I harvested and processed food for a few days.  That will be good, come winter time.

And I really cleaned out my office, and got rid of 8 bags of dust-collecting clothes and junk that went to Goodwill.  I have a lot of clothes, which is silly for a person who prefers to wear jeans and a t-shirt most days.

These are all important tasks.  But they didn't use up the 10 days I had available.

So I loaded up my dog and some sunscreen, and we headed south for a vacation (with just a little bit of work to do along the way).

I weeded 11 bags of books from the shelves in our house--and FOUR bags
were full of horse books.

First stop: Kelso.  Becky wanted some of the books I'd weeded!  An excellent opportunity to see a friend and re-home a bunch of books I don't need to keep dusting--yay, me!  And yay, Becky!  I threw in some storytelling CD's too, and some horse DVD's I will never watch again.  Her kids will watch anything with a horse in it, so I wish them the joy of it.

Second stop:  Seal Rock.  My friend Trish is camera-shy, so she hasn't been featured on this blog before, except indirectly.

Trish loves horses and dogs, even goofball dogs like Foxie Loxie

Trish is the one who helped me find my first mare Story, and set me on this crazy Standardbred path.

Solomon is a rescued TB with tons of personality.

Trish lives in Oregon now, so I made a special effort to hunt her down.  She gave me the tour of the barn and pastures--horse keeping on the coast is vastly different than it is for us here in the Swamp!

Yes, this is a joke.  Kinda.

Most people in this area can immediately point to "high ground" at any time of day or night.
Here in the Swamp, we point to volcanoes (even in the dark)

With sandy soil and salty air, pasture is more recreational in Seal Rock than it is nutritional.  Mostly, the "pasture" is a spot for horses to run and play.  Food is almost exclusively provided by humans, so horses need a lot more hands-on care than they need here, especially in summer.

Not everyone is a workaholic at the barn in Seal Rock.  Hermione is an excellent wheel-chock.

My main excuse reason for a road trip to Oregon was to visit these nice people:

Randy and Alison got married almost 2 years ago!

Third stop:  Gleneden My brother and his wife moved to the Oregon Coast almost a year ago, and I still hadn't visited their new domicile.  They are excellent hosts.  

Sasha is also an excellent host.  His co-host Ra declined to be photographed.

Foxie and I got properly toured around the area:  

This the mainstage at the PAC, where my brother manages the stage (and many other things)

Communication Hill, above Cobble Beach

Drift Creek Trail

I tried the chowder all over town.  Rogue brewery gets points for including "garnish clams" (in the shell)
in their chowder bowl, but Mo's chowder is still the best.

Sea Lion docks at Newport bayfront

Lots of folks with crab pots down here at the public dock

Lighthouse at Yaquina Head

NOT PICTURED:  grey whales.  We saw spouts and tails several times each day--sometimes we could see them from the highway!  --but my little camera doesn't get good photos of them.  

It never stops thrilling me to see whales so near.


Fox was a little intimidated by the ocean at first

he got used to sand in his toes...and his eyes

I am not good at selfies

Fox learned to chase waves

After a session of wave-chasing, it's good to sit in the sand and glare at the ocean for a while

I'd kept my eyes open for mushrooms while hiking with my brother, but foraging treasure came to me indirectly instead, by way of a friend of Rosemary who lives locally to Newport!

Brandi says lobster mushrooms are plentiful near her house.  Jim made these
into a divine chowder with smoked salmon and lots of garlic.

Last Stop: Newport Before heading home, I met up with  Rebecca and had cake for breakfast! 

We celebrated Rebecca's 32 years (!) as a children's librarian,
and her imminent retirement.  Library patrons came to hug her while we ate,
because Newport is that kind of town.

Thanks for a great vacation, Oregon.  I'll be back for another visit soon!

Sunset at Gleneden beach.


  1. Seal Rock and Newport! <3

    My very much missed Kaylee (in icon)'s one and only beach trip was when we spent 10 glorious days camping at Seal Rock Beach after flying out from Texas to escape the summer heat one August - it was amazing and I have dreamed about going back every since!

  2. Those tsunami signs freak J out, as well as the volcano and earthquake danger zone ones. And the fires in Summer. If you've never lived with natural disasters, they seem intimidating. (There are no "emergency/survival kits" in Germany; there are no power outages.) His worry is real, and makes me wonder how any of us make it into old age in the PNW (giggle). Did I tell you about J's first visit to the Oregon coast to see the Pacific, his first "real" ocean? He was terribly surprised at the "white noise" - he expected the sounds of individual waves. *LOL!* Probably Foxie thought the same thing!

    1. I admit, the signs are a little freaky...and when I got home, I wondered why we don't have "volcano evacuation" signs. The answer is, of course, that when the Big One hits and the volcanos all blow at once and the off-shore waves hit tsunami level, there won't be a safe place to go.

      I guess the real answer is: live a good life because you will never know which one is the final hour.

  3. Live a good life. I am working on it.
    Of course, there is the list of to-do's. On my walk around the Nature Reserve yesterday, I happened to have my clippers with me, so did some blackberry bush trimming along the fence!
    Glad you and Foxie had such a lovely trip.


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