"I started photographing my domestic world and writing not just about what I had made,
but why I made it, examining the thoughts that accompany creativity and the act of making."
Jane Brocket from The Gentle Art of Domesticity p. 189 UK edition

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

North Along the Pacific Coast

Driving into Monterey, CA, I was surprised to see a cruise ship in the bay!

The following photos are especially for Jo who visited here from England ten years ago

and was reading this.  I started reading this copy as well, Jo.

My two sisters and brother-in-law are in the area of the aquarium complex that with special effects was turned into the tank where George and Gracie the whales swam in the Star Trek movie The Voyage Home

On the way back to the beach condo we stopped here to buy some artichokes.

I enjoyed reading all the comments about how you like to eat artichokes...or not.  I rinse and trim them, pop them in a large pot, cover them with water,  put in a little vinegar and olive oil, and simmer them until the outer leaves easily peel off.  I like to eat them without sauce although have sometimes dipped the leaves in mayonnaise.

Jennifer, after reading your comment about the Giant Artichoke, I remembered passing by it, but I did not eat there.  I managed to crop a glimpse of the sign for you though :)

After four wonderful days in the Monterey area we drove north through San Francisco on 19th Ave.

across the Golden Gate Bridge,

that my husband and I walked across on our first date in 1970.  You can glimpse the former prison island of Alcatraz through the bars on the bridge.

I am amazed by how many vineyards are in the Sonoma and Napa area!

Further north this is a zoomed in view of the Crescent City, lighthouse from Brother Jonathan Point looking south.

Looking north this is a zoomed in view of the Saint George Reef Lighthouse from Brother Jonathan Point.

From Point Saint George looking east this is a view of the still snowy mountains.

I saw so many beautiful California Poppies on this trip!

And this magnificent azalea bush was in full bloom at the beach house I stayed at in Lincoln City, OR,

where I got to work some more on Rose's album

and tried sketching some flowers.

Sunday night I arrived home and am settling back in, enjoying glimpses of ducks on the front pond,

and glimpses of Mt. Hood, like this zoomed in view I snapped from Burnside Ave.

And I am enjoying playing with my pioneer girls!  Aunt Lissie bought bonnets for each of them. [My oldest daughter has been reading the Little House on the Prairie books to the older girls :) ]
Now I am off to try to catch up on your news!

Gracie xx

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

At the Artichoke Capitol

We left the Portland, OR, area in the dark and in the rain.
Soon after crossing the border of Oregon into California we saw Mt. Shasta...
a little closer...

and closer yet!
Along the way we saw goats and sheep
and horses and cattle.  Don't you love the green pastures?
We went by many vineyards, and the Winemaker statue in Napa, California.
Then we arrived at the Artichoke Capitol of Castoville, California.
This is part of the view from the beach house, my sisters and brother-in-law and I are staying at.

The state flower of California is the California Poppy...pretty shades of yellow and orange.
The seaweed in front of the beach houses is golden, too.
Sunday night our sunset was a gentle pink and lovely.
Near sunset on Monday it was rainy and looked like this while we were out on the beach,

and like this when we were back inside!
I have started another dishcloth with yarn Betsy gave me, stored in a project bag Taci gave  me and a sheep bag my older sister purchased for me years ago on a trip to Britain.
My long time friend Paula, from San Jose drove down to have lunch with me today and she brought these beautiful eggs for me from her flock.  Thank you again, Paula!

Tomorrow we plan to go see the Monterey Aquarium and watch some sea creatures :)  We also plan to buy some artichokes to fix for dinner tomorrow night.  Do you like to eat artichokes, and if so do you have a favorite recipe for fixing them? 
Gracie xx

Friday, March 28, 2014


Lambs from Meredith and little girls visited Gramma....surprise!!!

with lots of hugging action which Shelby Dog chose to ignore.

Rose was a little anxious....

and almost overwhelmed ...

but Nanny Taffy [Fluffy Baa Baas sister] has moved in to help keep the lambs and little girls happily safe

so that everyone could enjoy another visit through cyberspace with Meredith and Little Buddy in Florida! 

 Gramma has also enjoyed visits with other friends, including Betsy who made this fabulous doily for Teresa,

and Taci who helped Gramma learn how to send these cool pictures on her phone :)

Gramma has also been visiting lots of pattern sites trying to decide on a rectangular shawl pattern for the Malabrigo merino yarn she bought recently.  It's fun to look!

And Gramma has also been  visiting with family and friends via phone, emails, blogs, and Facebook while she prepares to drive to CA with her youngest daughter and son-in-law starting at 4am tomorrow morning for a week of visiting with family and friends!

Are you enjoying any visits where you are?

Gracie XX