27 April 2011

Spring in the Columbia River Gorge: Pt 1

The Columbia River Gorge is another magical place for me, especially the part from Hood River to Portland. I love it because of all the green trees and ferns, waterfalls, history...well there are just a LOT of reasons why I love it! Why don't you come along with us and see, if by the end, you love it a bit too?

This is Crown Point--the little building (which is actually not a little building) is the Vista House. The views from up there are breathtaking, literally, which is why I was not up there this day:)

Two highways go through this area--the Columbia River Historic Highway (parts of which are open to vehicles; parts which are open to hikers only and some which are still not open if I recall). The other highway is I-84 which is the lower highway; this one runs along the river and also has great views.
The early morning light was unbelievable--this photo does not give the beauty of the area justice. It was SO beautiful, I kept shooting photo after photo; it was also really cold so some of them, sadly, were shot through my car window:(
Another major tourist attractions is the Multnomah Falls! Visitors from all over the world come to see the falls--some to hike the many trails in the area.

When we were there, we almost had the place to ourselves. Later in the day, when we drove by, the place was crowded. It is very green and shady in the area right by the falls. We could also feel the spray off the falls. I loved it and all the old rock walls and steps. I love the historic lodge there too, but you will have to wait until part 2 for to see that! As I have said, many a time, I would love to know what my Oregon Trail pioneer families thought of this area after being in the drier area of the Gorge. Unlike many other families, mine came the river route instead of the Barlow trail. The river was quite a different place then--no dams--so they would have seen Celilio Falls in the Dalles area and the Cascades (rapids) near Cascade Locks.

The Columbia River here is in a gorge that divides the Cascade mountains of Oregon from those of Washington. Some mountains and higher elevations had a lot of snow on them; some other areas less so--the lowest elevations no snow:) I cannot believe this spring--we just got snow at about the 2,000 foot elevation and Washington state extended their studded tire season till just a little while ago.

This last photo (below) is in the Hood River area. This is a big area for windsurfing! During the summer you can see loads of them and it is very exciting to watch! We didn't see any windsurfers that day-it was pretty calm, we did see a few boaters though.

Looking eastward--the next town would be Mosier. From here the gorge area becomes drier and less green.

See you later for part 2! One of my fav shows just started.

Blessings this day, Aimee

Photos: spring 2011, Columbia River Gorge (westernmost area). Sorry about the formatting--it has been very strange lately.

The WORD on Wednesday

"Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in Thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer."

O God, Creator of the natural world, Creator-Redeemer of me, let the words that come from my mouth and hand, the thoughts that I choose to reflect on, and my deeds, be as beautiful as Thy creation.

And, LORD God, when I become discouraged that they are not; that I have failed again--let me remember that it is You that gives me strength and it is You that has forgiven me.

Blessings this Wednesday morn, Aimee

Photo: The lower section of Multnomah Falls, Columbia River Gorge, Spring 2011. I am still working on perfecting my waterfall photos; should probably have used a tripod :) Will post more photos of this area and others soon. Verse: Psalm 19:14 KJV

26 April 2011


Remember I said it was important to have flexibility in making plans/goals? Right now that is being put to the test, as I was told by the ER doctor I must take it easy for several days and schedule follow-up with my physician so they can determine what caused the pain. SO just when I was making real headway in my spring cleaning and organization, it is time to rest and trust for awhile because good stewardship calls me to do that with the great and precious gift of life that I've been given.

"Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding.He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."

Teach me Lord to wait.

Blessings this early morn,

Photo: white orchid azalea. Not blooming yet--but soon:)

Verse: Isaiah 40:28-31 KJV

25 April 2011

Home + Garden Plans 2011

Recently I made some plans for the garden and our home. I must confess that part of me was a bit fearful and hesitant of making goals, as so many things changed the last time I did this...however life goes on and planning/goals are important as long as you remember to leave room for flexibility + to prioritize:)

Garden Plans (in order of importance):

1) Extend planting bed and paths in Japanese-style garden. Redo edging. Add daffodils, more Irish moss by bench, etc. Goal: simplify mowing and solve edging problems; provide a 'drier' path for the wet season, maintenance.

2) Redo edging in transitional (mixed ornamental/edible garden beds). Goal: simplify mowing and solve edging problems --yea, done:)

3) Add 1-2 half barrels near the Gunnera plant for lavender (yum), mint and/or edibles like veggies. Goal: soften the look of that area while adding more color there.

4) Add more wildflowers, lavender or daffodils in second raised bed (we don't use these for edibles as they were built with (yuck) pressure treated wood. The decision to use the first one for wildflowers/perennials was a good one as it seems to have attracted more birds and butterflies:) Also, add a second soaker hose and seating. Goal: add more color, attract more wildlife with limited water use plants.

5) Main Garden: redo compost areas, level, add path under arbor and by caneberries. Possibly add a non pressure treated raised bed or two on south side of garden. Goal: make area more user friendly while still providing wildlife habitat, new edibles area??

6) Deck maintenance, clean, finish east rail + planter box. Possibly add free standing deck -- perhaps with a gazebo off north deck.

Home plans:

1) Each week pick a 'focus' room and thoroughly clean, organize, sort + discard as needed, decorate it. Plan of 'attack': master bathroom (about 1/2 done now), public areas (family, living, dining rooms + kitchen), bedrooms, other. Goal: learned the hard way to divide up the heavy duty stuff due to back and health issues--this way divides up the task more reasonably:) Get rid of unneeded, excess stuff. Simplify cleaning and maintenance tasks.

2) Continue with personal goals in terms of clothing decisions and other items.

Well there they are--I will add photos as goals are accomplished. It kind of goes without saying, but I am trying to be a good steward of our resources in terms of both land and money spent on these projects:) Wish me luck!

Does anyone else have garden + home plans for this spring + summer season?

Blessings, Aimee

Photo: our manmade waterfall/stream (not as big as the ones I saw this last week in God's garden, AKA the Columbia River Gorge. However, I LOVE the one my Farmer Boy made us--it makes me + our koi very, very happy:)

24 April 2011

Easter 2011

What more can I say this Easter morn?

I think this says it best:)

Thank you Jesus!

Blessings this Easter, Aimee

Notes: Above clipart from the following website: http://thebiblerevival.com/clipart.htm and is being used according to the 'terms of use' permissions found there. This specific art is from their collection: Public Domain Clipart Collection #44 Color ABC's~Per the above website: "Clipart have all come from sources published in the United States before 1923. They are therefore in the public domain in the United States, but they may be copyrighted in countries outside the United States." Please see the above website for further information, to view their collections of music, clipart, etc. and to comply with the terms of use for using the clipart collections they have there should you be interested.

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