Saturday, July 31, 2010

Isn't she lovely?

This is my grandma.

Isn't she classy?

She was just sealed to her parents...Read more about that here.

I love you Grama-lama.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


My lovely Aunt Steph found this treasure for me at a yardsale....

Isn't she a butte? I mean beaut?!

Also, it's official, I have Round Up tix.

Now, they aren't the much coveted Tuesday PBR (professional bull riding) tickets, or tickets for Friday and Saturday. But, they are Wednesday 4th row tickets close to the chutes! Plus, I'm excited about a special "back when" event they are doing that day, but I wouldn't want to spoil it and tell you all.

Also, it FINALLY stormed a bit today. In fact, the power went out in downtown Pendleton during my lunch hour and stayed off for about an hour and a half. Gotta love a summer storm... mmmmmhmmmm. I do.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Like a virgin

Eric, in all his many years of being an East Oregonian has never made it to a rodeo. Shocking, right?! So, when I realized Chief Joseph Days were coming up, I snatched off a Friday afternoon from work and headed to one of my favorite places on earth, with the Rodeo Virgin in tow.

On the way up we grabbed "Oregon Berry" shakes at the Lil' Bear in Lostine. They were great treats, featuring blueberries, marionberries, blackberries and ....possibly huckleberries?

We had fun exploring an antique store, almost purchasing some tobacco pipes and an old yellow chair - but refraining.

We made it up to Joseph where we did a quick duck into the market to pick up some picnic supplies. Okay, maybe it was a little longer because I, of course, had to use the ladie's room. We reached the Wallowa Lake Marina and procured a paddle boat for the hour. A very romantic, sur l'eau (on the water) picnic ensued.

Can't you just feel the romance?
We changed into our rodeo get-ups, found dicounted tickets and hit the arena stands. Eric was enthralled by the amount of double-fisted beer drinking going on, the various types of cowboy hats, the monkey/dog goat herders and my beauty, of course.
On the way down from the riotous ruckus, he was inducted into the Blue Banana Hall of Fame, and saved me from a possessed bat that may have been screaming at us as we trespassed into an abandoned house.
We made it safely back to Grandma's where we tucked ourselves in for the night.

The next day we picked up Morgan and Zoey and headed up Catherine Creek to do some exploring around a rumored "ice cave." Some fireworks, mosquito bites, and dusty pant bottoms later we hit the natural spring for the second time that day, quenched our thirst and soaked our weary feet. It was like a scene from "A River Runs Through It."
(I'm sorry, I have no pictures of this day, just use that rusty imagination of yours.)
Eric was also a Cove Drive-In newbie, so we all grabbed bacon-cheeseburgers, fries and some ice cream. Money well-spent.

The rest of the afternoon was spent playing card games, dominoes and some pretty exciting games of croquet in Grandma's yard. And Zoey may have helped me soak Eric with the yard hose.

It was fun get-a-way. Though tiring. And the virgin may have gotten the ultimate seal of approval, a hug from Grandma!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Life is like picking blackberries ...

you have to fight a lot of thorns, but the reward is so worth it.

Last night Eric and I went over to the nature trails in Umatilla where there are a bunch of wild blackberry bushes. Though it is early in the season, there were a fair amount of ripe, juicy berries prime for the picking.

We picked enough to put in some homemade ice cream. We played in the water a bit to, watching the sun sink closer to the horizon.

Then he showed me the nature trails in Irrigon. Those were bizarre, but probably held probably one of the best beaches in Umatilla County. We got to the sandy shores just in time to watch the sun tuck itself in. The color were amazing. The waters cool and shallow. We walked out into the river, toes in the sand. It was truly bliss.
Before heading back to make our delicious desert we hit a taco stand - my first ever. These things dot the county, and I've been meaning to go to one since I moved here. I loved it. There was covered seating right by the shack and the guy barely understood english, let alone when I asked him to hold the raddishes. Luckily I know this guy who happens to be fluent in espanola. The lettuce was left on, the raddishes were left off.

We made it back to his house where we got the ice cream going in the machine and ate our tastey taco treats (and cleared out my sinuses with a fiery jalepeno).  

The ice cream turned out to be my best batch yet. Thick, very creamy, with a perfect berry to icecream ratio.

It was really kind of a perfect evening.

Friday, July 16, 2010

sometimes on my lunch break i go to the cemetery and read. or just sit. 

today was one of those days. it is so peaceful and calm. after reading a good article about "acting in all diligence" i just laid on my back and felt the breeze lift the ends of my hair, as i lay under the shade of a leafy green tree. i felt the sun peak through it's branches and kiss my freckled skin. 

there was a burial today. at one o'clock on a friday afternoon. 

i have a particular spot i like to go, and for the first time after many times of sitting here, i noticed that just a stone's throw away were the final resting places of many WWII heroes. there was some kind of calm that came from knowing i had soldiers at the ready. 

in a world where the pace seems to keep picking up, and in a life that seems so fragile and noisy, it is nice to find moments to just sit and be still. i encourage you to find some time to do the same. 

Thursday, July 15, 2010


I'm at work, but I'm kind of bored. I need to learn how to work slower and less efficiently I suppose. Or, find a billion things to toss into the air at once. Don't worry though, come next week I'll have another full plate of crap to do.

Thought I'd delight you with a photo of me doing what I do 7.5 hours a day.

No, not look adorable, but sit and stare at a screen.
Hey look! I've got my official name tag now.

Oh, and I have my official beesness cards, too.

Okay, I don't sit and stare for 7.5 hours everyday, I often get up and visit with the other Chamber "Maids" or folks who come in. Or I have meetings. Or I go on tours. It's really a rough job. Ha!

On a side note, I ate sushi for the first time in MONTHS last night. There's this fun little place called Cimmyotti's down on Main Street. It very much has an old time saloon feel. Dark and cozy. They serve sushi every Wednesday night, and my new Pendletonian friend Brittany invited me to join her and her Pops. It was so much fun! It will definitely have to become a weekly tradition!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


My friend A.E. Jones posted this to her blog. Had to share. Hard to keep from laughing out loud right here at The Pendleton Chamber of Commerce.

Go. Laugh. Anything to get through a caffeine free Wednesday.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Give me lazy days with nothing better to do than singing...

Courtesy of one Eric Lougee (pronounced "Loud-gee" without the D), I had the opportunity to go see Train  (the band, not the mode of transportation) in concert last night.

Oh my goodness, it was so great and a bit surreal. We were in the 8th row from the stage and it was delightful. The lead singer probably walked about 10 feet to the right of me. Ca-razy!
I met Eric at the Single's Branch here in Herm. After toasting me a perfectly roasted pink Startburst at an activity we quickly became Facebook friends. After discovering our mutual enjoyment of road trips he invited me along for this mini-excursion. And I was so glad!
(oh my gosh, how the wind blew my thin hairs)
I was pleasantly surprised to find their sound virtually unchanged from what you hear on the radio waves - that guy was pretty on key and everything. I hate it when you go to a concert and the artist sounds totally awful. They did all the faves and a lot of their new stuff which is ALL really good. Some new faves of mine would be "I Got You" and "Save Me, San Francisco." Of course they did "Hey Soul Sister" and "If It's Love" as well as their older classics like "Meet Virginia"

Seeing how we were at a winery, the wine was definitely flowing there. It was pretty entertaining to watch old married couples groping each other and dancing the night away.

After officially leaving the stage they came back out to do an encore and delighted us with "Drops of Jupiter."

The venue was pretty great. At Maryhill Winery in Goldendale, Washington.

After the show we hit the gas station (courtesy my walnut sized bladder) then went to an imitation Stonehenge near the winery. That was cool and had it's funny moments – including zombies, an alien spaceship dock and almost bumping into a pair of lovers. The stars were out in true form last night, too – which instigated a hunt for the little dipper and some serious discussion over the Milky Way (Eric wanted me to amend this to say that after he did some research he discovered that I was - yet again - correct and we were, in fact, gazing at zee Milky Way).

Train was great, Eric was fun and I had one of the best evenings I've had in a while.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Can I have it?

.....want or need? Hard to know right now.

It's only $44.99... ahem.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

McNary Beach

I'm going to try and ignore the fact that my 7 month old Macbook Pro trackpad is malfunctioning and share with you a little of what my day looked like:

My sweetheart of a boss let me skip out on work early and take the sibs to the river for some hours of fun consuming mass amounts of vitamin D and cooling our hot bods in the murky waters of the Columbia.

There was a lot of literal mud-slinging, sand digging, seashell finding, synchronized Y-M-C-A-ing, exfoliating, Mexican culture immersion, laughter, yelling and a good ol' time.

While there are no pictures of me in the water (ah the joys of being a photographer) I would just like to say that I totally smoked Mr. Hot-Shot-14-Year-Old-Deep-Voiced-Brother-Who-Wants-To-Be-Referred-To-As-A-Dolphin-Not-A-Shark-Or-Killer-Whale-Max in a swim out to the buoy line. That was until we both noticed, at the same time, that our feet were being swallowed by massive amounts of creepy water moss foilage, screamed and squealed while mad dashing back to shallow waters. Good times, I'm telling you.
The boys thought the mud was almost as cool as wrestling each other.

This would be my 16 year-old diva of a sister. You'll see no pictures of her in the water because she barely put her toes in. Though I did give her an excellent exfoliating mud mask.

And that is all for today, I suppose.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Staff Meetings at B n Bs?

Today our staff meeting was hosted by the nice folks at The Riverwalk Bed and Breakfast here in the growing-on-me-more-and-more-every-second-town of Pendleton. We had a tour of the 98 year old house and then enjoyed a delighful breakfast of muffins and fruit and yogurt parfaits.

This place was simple and quaint. I could easily picture myself spending an afternoon curled up with a book in any one of the rooms.

(I may have had three banana chocolate chip muffins...)

Have I mentioned that I LOVE my job?