Blue pond at an Oregon farm.

Fresh Berries and Lazy Summer Days…

Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup.  Wendell Berry

While I appreciate the sentiment behind this quote and am sure I’d thoroughly enjoy a summer dawn with fresh picked berries I can also vouch for the fact that they are great in the late morning straight from a farm stand and wonderful in my afternoon wine glass. 🙂

All photos are from a lovely long weekend in Oregon with my sister, her husband and my sweet niece, Sophia.  Sophia sipped her fresh grape juice while the rest of us tasted our way through fantastic wines from J. Christopher and Ponzi wineries.

 

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iPhoneography Monday in the Skagit Valley Tulip Fields

I know I said Thursday would be my last tulip photos for a while but since Sally’s mobile photography challenge is on vacation until May 5th I thought I’d share one more post from the Skagit Valley.  The annual Tulip Festival is a favorite with photographers as well as fun day trip for the family but it’s important to remember that along with the beautiful display gardens and $5 off-road parking these beautiful fields belong to working farms and tulips are big business.

While paying visitors slowly walk around the perimeter of these large bulb fields the hired pickers work long shifts carefully selecting almost opened stems to bundle for sale in the gift shops and flower stands through the valley.  Greenhouse grown tulips and daffodils are available year round but field grown flowers are prized for their longer length and deeper colors and are only available for a few weeks each year.  This group of pickers quietly worked through their Sunday morning shift morning filling wood crates with perfect stems and though I noticed most people tried to avoid including them in their photos I thought the crews hard work should be noted as part of the tulip story.

 

 

Skagit Valley Tulips – 3

2014 Tulip Festival 2

I took hundreds of tulip photos last weekend but don’t worry, I won’t post all of them at once!  After today we’ll take a break from the Skagit Valley pictures and tomorrow will bring something new to see and talk about.

Skagit Valley Tulips – 1

2014 Tulip Festival 1

I usually post a new black and white photo every Tuesday but after spending the weekend surrounded by millions of tulips my head is full of bright, vibrant colors and I thought it would be fun to spend the week sharing a few of my favorite views from the 2014 Skagit Valley Tulip Festival.

This image above is from one of the beautiful display beds at the Roozengaarde Display Garden and Store and is the first of the week because I liked the contrast between the cheery tulips carefully  lined up in front of the fence separating the farm from the wide open fields of the valley.

My 2013 gallery about the Tulip Festival is one of my 10 most viewed posts but if you missed it the first time a link is here.  I’m  happy to report this year the fields are dry!

Travel Theme: Statues

Statues

The Santuario de Guadalupe in Santa Fe, NM is the oldest shrine to our Lady of Guadalupe in the United States.  I wrote a little about the history of this place in a Black and White Tuesday post about the Church here and today, as part of Alisa’s Weekly Travel Theme:  Statues I have a view of  the beautiful statue at the entrance.

Black and White Tuesday: 1-7-14

B&W Tuesday 1-7-14

Winter trips on the Washington State Ferries offer some amazing photo opportunities if you have a warm coat and don’t mind some extremely cold wind.   John, Ryan and I took a beautiful trip on the Edmonds – Kingston ferry a few days ago and I left the comfy, warm bench to explore the top deck and take photos for as long as I could before my fingers froze and my hair tangled into permanent knots.

The bright blue sky against this green roof and white trim on the boat is what I set out to capture in this photo but when I revisited it in black and white and decided I liked it this way even better.  Of course I have plenty of color shots too and if you’d like to see Mt. Rainier at sunset a new photo is up on my Facebook page.

A Word A Week: Wind

Wind

January 1st 2010 was the stormiest day I’ve ever spent on a beach with wind gusts reaching up to 70 miles per hour.  I snapped this photo during a brief moment of relative calm but when the tide came up a few more feet the wind speed surged and hundreds of driftwood beach logs began rolling through the surf like toothpicks.   Very dangerous toothpicks…

Posted as part of Sue’s A Word A Week:  Wind.

Capture the Colour 2013

Through September and October I’ve  had the pleasure of reading bright, colorful posts from participants in the Capture the Colour 2013 contest.  I thought this particular challenge sounded like a lot of fun but fall has been so busy I haven’t had time to check out the sponsoring website to look through the details.  This morning however the always kind Milka at MilkaPejovic.com recommended I submit my own photos as it is part of the submission process to suggest fellow bloggers also create new posts featuring the colors of red, blue, green, yellow and white.  Well, the contest ends tomorrow but I decided to stretch my free time a little longer and pick five photos from my archives that fit the requirements.  I hope you enjoy the colorful trip through my corner of the world.

Capture the Colour Blue

Blue – public art in Lynnwood, WA

Capture the Colour Green

Green – Picture Lake just off the Mt. Baker Highway

Capture the Colour White

White – Another view from the Mt. Baker Highway

Capture the Colour Yellow

Yellow – Flowers in Edmonds, WA

Capture the Colour Red

Red – Flowers on my deck in Edmonds, WA

To finish my post I would like to suggest the following five bloggers look through their archives for colorful photos.

We Live in a Flat

Around and About the Pacific Northwest

BLUEBRIGHTLY

de Wets Wild

Perceptive Pot Clueless Kettle

Weekly Photo Challenge: Good Morning!

This week, show us a photo that says “Good morning!”

It could be a shot taken during your morning walk, the morning vista out your kitchen window, your cat doing a pre-breakfast stretch, or a textured close-up of your oatmeal bubbling away at the stove.

I’m excited to see how all your days start — maybe we’ll all pick up a new morning ritual!

– Michelle The Daily Post

WPC Good Morning

A 6:00 am flight time is challenging under the best of circumstances since it means my alarm is set for 3:00.  Last week John, Ryan and I bravely faced a cold, dark morning with very little sleep and big cups of coffee for our flight to sunny southern California and Disneyland.  Our first reward was this beautiful sunrise from the plane window.

Posted as part of the Weekly Photo Challenge:  Good Morning!

A Word A Week: Roof

In a June post I wrote one of the things I love about travel is the chance to experience a brand new view in very normal moments. Walking down the street and people watching in cafe’s are two of my favorite “normal” locations and as a result I spend a lot of time pointing my camera up to the sky capturing roof lines and clouds that are so different from what I see here at home.

These roof top views are from the area around Santa Fe New Mexico and posted as part of Sue’s A Word A Week Challenge:  Roof.

A Word A Week: Unexpected

Space Cow 2

Space Cow 1

Space Cow 3

With five days in Dallas and Houston I knew I would see plenty of cow images and Houston would definitely have some space themed public art but I didn’t expect to see a larger than life Space Cow!

This statue greets passengers inside the Houston Airport Terminal A and is my pick for Sue’s A Word A Week:  Unexpected.