"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

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


  1. Wow Gravie, this was a beautiful trip down to California. It looks like you are having lots of fun!!! I'm glad you are enjoying and still having a little time to knit. Have fun Gracie !

  2. You had such a pretty drive and what a lovely place you are all staying at.

  3. Simply beautiful pics, Gracie - thanks for sharing your trip with us. I tried artichokes for the very first time only a few months ago, and surprised myself by liking them! ;-)
    Enjoy your holiday & have fun with your family,

  4. Hi Gracie! Oh how fun that trip is down through Oregon and into California! I love that part going around Mt. Shasta with the lake. You are staying in a faboo place! You'll have to tell me the cost of renting a house on the beach there! I wish you could see the countryside around here.. it's amazing! Rolling hills of farms. See you in the pool soon! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  5. Those photos are gorgeous Gracie! I've never seen Mt. Shasta. It's very majestic isn't it? The artichoke fields look interesting. I haven't seen a field of those before either. Obviously I need to travel with you-I would experience lots of firsts. :-). I'm so glad you're enjoying yourself and your yarn.

  6. Oh My I am so excited, please post pictures of Monterey aquarium, My bloke and I went there when we were travelling the west coast in an RV about 10years ago and we loved it. I was reading Cannery Row by Steinbeck at the time too so I fell in love with the place. It will remind me of our big trip, child free, listening to music on Highway 1 and celebrating Bloke's 30th Birthday. I love all your photos today. Love Jo xxx

  7. I love Castroville! Did you stop to eat in the giant artichoke restaurant? They make everything from artichokes! I hope you enjoy the rest of the trip.

  8. It sounds like you are having a lovely break! What a beautiful view. I hope that the rest of your stay is as enjoyable. I am knitting dishcloths as well, which is a first for me. Lesley x

  9. What wonderful photos, thanks so much for sharing. I hope you continue to have a wonderful time in California! Interesting to see the rain, do you remember the song from the 1970s "It never rains in Southern California"? I used to love that song! When I was a young teen California seemed, to us here in the UK, the place to be to be cool and hip.



  10. Some wonderful pictures Gracies thanks for sharing them with us, enjoy the trip
    Clare xx

  11. How strange - we did eat artichokes tonight, as a special treat. It's quite hard to find them here in Scotland, and they are expensive. Yum!

    You will have driven through parts of Northern California that my grandparents and great-grandparents lived and worked in. One of my uncles operated the "filling station" in Dunsmuir for many years! Most of my family worked a bit further down the mountain, though... Weaverville, Igo, Ingot, Redding...

  12. Oh my Gracie such magnificent pictures and wonderful view from the beach house. I do so love the ocean myself even in winter ☺ Those californian poppies reminded me of my dear dad who used to use a hair oil called "californian poppy" and he would sing the name to me lol. xoxo

  13. Oh Gracie, this post is such a treat for the eyes! Your photos are wonderful and capture the beautiful landscape so well, especially your shots of the mountain and beach. I hope you're having a fantastic time. x

  14. Fabulous photo's Gracie! I can't wait to see more of your trip :)
    As for artichokes, we just lightly cook them and dip them into a homemade Hollandaise sauce....looking forward to seeing how you fix yours x x

  15. Lovely pictures...wishing you a most joyous trip! :)

  16. Have been looking forward to seeing the pictures of your beach holiday, they are wonderful. I am quite surprised the sea looks so rough I would have expected California to feel very be warm and dry! Sarah x

  17. Gorgeous images of a beautiful place ... hope you're continuing to have a great time x

  18. Hello Gracie and apologies for being a little late with my comments. Seems to be taking me ages to do anything at the moment and I feel so tired yet am not doing much. (Though the tiredness could be the effect of the painkillers. :-( ) Beautiful photos of beautiful scenery. How I wish I could be there by the sea. I love the sea. We were due to go to Cornwall i May but have cancelled due to my knee problem. Hope to re book before too long. I have only ever tried artichokes once - jury still out. I think I possibly need to try them again maybe cooked differently? Hope you are continuing to have a wonderful time. Anne x

  19. Gracie, I am getting all caught up on blogs, such a wonderful trip you are on. Have a beautiful time.

  20. Beautifully inspiring photos, every single one! What an amazing trip! Yes, I do love green pastures, and vineyards. My brother makes amazing artichokes with a bleu cheese dipping sauce. You'll have to let us know how you prepared yours. Makes me want to make some for myself! :)


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