"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

Sunday, August 17, 2014


My youngest son, Tim, visiting from NJ, and I started meandering  from  Vista Point along the Columbia River in Oregon,  where Tim took this photo with the Washington shore pictured behind us.
We meandered by Multnomah Falls, and up Mt. Hood,
and along the Sandy River at Dodge Park,
and then to Blue Lake Park where you can see Joy and Molly splashing,
and where Uncle Tim and Rosie had a serious consultation,
and Uncle Tim gallantly guided Joy balancing on a log.
Meandering around our home after Tim flew back to NJ some of the family picked the first of our crop of apples.
Hayley asked for help learning how to crochet a blanket for her mom.
I knit some dishcloths for my friends, Teresa, Betsy and Taci, and my oldest daughter picked some of her lavender to share with them.
Then I meandered south to Crescent City especially to visit my dear 83 year old friend, Donna, and my wonderful friends in the Windy Weavers group.
Donna and I ate dinner here and played a game of Scrabble, too :)
Right after I left Donna in Crescent City, after a delightful visit with her, she suddenly had a heart attack and then a stroke and died...a shock I am still processing while celebrating her beautiful creative life filled with teaching, playing piano, making and appreciating art, and being a champion Scrabble player who trounced me nearly every time we played.  We shared faith in God, both graduated from San Jose State University and had a loving friendship that made light of the 20 years that separated us in age.  I am so grateful to have known her.
From Crescent City I meandered further south to Sonoma, CA, to pick up my oldest sister, Carolyn, and we then drove north to the high desert land of eastern Oregon.
Just south of Bend, OR, we saw this fabulous sunset at Waldo Lake.
We had hoped to go swimming with Teresa and Dayle in Waldo Lake and see 140 feet down in the clear water, but thunderstorms prevented that :( and Carolyn had a migraine headache so was not able to enjoy the delicious dinner of baked potato, corn on the cob, and filet mignon that Teresa and Dayle fixed for us. I also got to meet and enjoy a visit with Teresa's brother and sister-in-law, and one of her other sisters.
The next day, Carolyn, who felt better, and I meandered further north by the three Sisters Mountains, had lunch in the charming Western themed town of Sisters, OR ,and drove back to my home in Gresham.
We meandered out to eat several times in the next few days, and my youngest daughter, Elisabeth took this interesting photo at Tad's Chicken an' Dumplins along the Sandy River where we had  memorably yummy meals.  Then tomorrow we meander to the Portland, OR, airport PDX, so that my sister can fly home to Sonoma, CA.

Where have you been meandering?

Gracie xx

Monday, July 28, 2014

Crafting Summer

Warm and misty Mt. Hood after some summer showers.
Kris's no bake yummy cool cookies on the pretty hand painted plate Amanda sent me when we had a swap.
Cobalt blue glass beads I strung...and restrung...and need to string again because the string in the kit will not hold a knot and the kit had no directions...just a bag holding beads and a string...simple right...or maybe not :)
A dishcloth I made for a friend: chain 40, *chain 1 then a row single crochet, chain 2  then a row double crochet, repeat from * until the desired size, but end with a row of single crochet.
A three part project showing a feeling processed in light of my faith in God.

The beginning of my illustration of Psalm 100:1-2.

My summer is simmering

sunshine is shimmering




and my making of




crafts :)

I am also plotting some treks from here to there and back

...details will follow....

How are you crafting your season?

Gracie xx

Monday, July 14, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

 While I have done a bit of traveling around the world by plane, and boat, and car, and train, I have done far more armchair traveling through blogging.  It is a privilege to interact with creative folk in far flung locales as well as some very close by.  One special creative blogger, Teresa Kasner, actually lives very close by me in Corbett, Oregon, near Portland and has become a lovely face to face friend. Before we met I was delighted to be able to order a set of her beautiful hand painted cards from her blog site, and have two of them framed and hung where I can enjoy viewing them.  She is soooo artistically talented and posts amazing photos and interesting narratives about the world around her, including glimpses of her beading, painting, crocheting, knitting, sewing, and civic and family/friend activities.  Thank you for  asking me to participate in this Blog Hop, Teresa!

1. What am I working on?
I finally finished my first crocheted cotton basket (pictured above) and have the first panel done for a second basket.  I have a crocheted shawl started, one sock on circular knitting needles, a cap on another set of circular needles, and the blanket (pictured below) on another set of circular knitting needles.  I also am working on a little photo album for my youngest Grand, Rose, and am sketching some flowers in her album as well.

 2. How does my work differ from others in its genre?
My work is SIMPLE and SLOWLY COMPLETED :) [I admire and am inspired by those whose work is the opposite of mine :) ]

3. Why do I write/create what I do?
I find joy in the creative process, especially in highlighting or creating the beautiful. [ I told one of my junior high teachers that someday I was going to write a book, but to date I have just written three children's plays, and contributed some devotional material to a book. ]
4.  How does my writing/creative process work?
Sometimes I enjoy the challenge of taking on an assignment, especially a project fueled by need, but more often these days, I find that as I look at the work of others, I am inspired to try to either duplicate what they have created or use their work as a launching platform for a similar project...now if I could just speed up my production rate...especially for making the many gifts I would like to give :)

One of the wonderful bloggers I have met  through Teresa is Betsy Queen whose blog is entitled The Simple Life of a Queen.  She is one of the busiest, women I know!  Her knitting and crochet projects are prolific in number and usually given away.  She is a Christian who is happily married and is living in Spokane, Washington.  She has three adult children and three grandchildren all of whom she has to travel many miles to see. [One of her sons lives in Japan!]  She has agreed to post an Around the World Blog Hop post next Monday, July 21, 2014.  Have you visited her blog?

Gracie xx

Saturday, July 12, 2014

A Crocheted Surprise Arrived!

The hazy days of summer have definitely developed in the Portland, OR, area!  While driving into Portland about a week ago the car thermometer registered 104 degrees...a rarity here.  I have really been glad Teresa and I have been able to go swimming as often as we have, but we got to the pool Friday only to find that it was closed for repairs :(

Somehow though, even though I hate being hot, I have found myself opening the car windows and relishing the warm air wafting in as opposed to closing the car windows and turning on the AC.  I have been enjoying donning my sunglasses to avoid being blinded by the fabulous blazing sunshine.  It is the warmest, sunniest summer I can remember in the seven years I have lived here and I am relishing it!

Some of our family gathered at our home to celebrate USA's Independence Day on July 4th.  My oldest granddaughter lost her upper front tooth. [a milestone :) ]  I planted some pretty striped red geraniums.  My oldest granddaughters got cooled off by water from the hose. We have picked blueberries from our bush and cherries from our wild cherry tree. 

Then, several days ago Tammy from T's Daily Treasures sent a beautiful doily she had crocheted for me in thanks for our blogging friendship. She blogs from her home in Kuwait, a part of the world that I would know much less about were it not for viewing her interesting posts, and I hope you will visit her through the link I posted above if you have not already done so.  It fascinates me that common interests in things like crochet have introduced me to bloggers from around the world!  Thank you, Tammy, for your generous gift which is currently under the sugar bowl on my tea tray.  Sweet :)

What has surprised you lately?

Gracie xx

Sunday, June 29, 2014


A zoomed in view of Vista House at Crown Point from the Women's Forum State Scenic Viewpoint
Looking northwest from Vista Point along the Columbia River
Looking east up the Columbia River from Vista Point

 The rotunda has amber-green-colored glass windows and limestone walls.

Some of the trade beads Teresa Kasner brought in to display and to share about some of their interesting history.

The rose bead necklace on the board is one Teresa made as a replica of a historic one she admired.
Can you see the elevator my cane and I rode on?
Here it comes!

Isn't it a clever design?
I stopped at a lavender farm on the way home, and bought a little sachet.
These beautiful horses pulling a wagon surprised me while I was driving through Corbett!

After huge boulders recently fell here onto the Historic Columbia River Highway metal screens were installed to discourage further erosion.  I thought this was a neat view of the sign Teresa's sketch is on, as well!

What vistas have you been seeing lately?

Gracie xx