"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


  1. Fabulous Gracie and those girls are all so cute, love their bonnets ♥ I love visiting aquariums and have
    done so in many places I have visited. Finally cool weather here and I even have a cardigan on lol

  2. It looks like you had a wonderful trip Gracie. I'm so glad. I've never seen the Golden Gate Bridge in person and would love to visit it sometime. Your photos are wonderful, especially all of the flowers. Your girls are priceless and their bonnets are just perfect. The LIttle House on the Prairie books were my favorites as a child. Have fun at Taci's knit night. I so wish I could join you there.

  3. What a fun trip! thanks for sharing. I've always thought Alcatraz was an interesting place and liked the movie Birdman from Alcatraz! Have a good week!

  4. Wow what a beautiful trip Gracie! Just wonderful to see so much beauty :) can't wait to see you tomorrow :)

  5. Oh Gracie, you are so adventurous! I would love to go back to Northern California and jaunt around. I loved visiting Monterrey and SF and all. I got a huge kick out of your little herd of pioneer girls! Adorable!! I can't go to knit nite due to volunteering at MF, but I sure wish I could. Do you know you have one of the most amazing ducks in the world in your pond? Those are 2 Wood Ducks.. the most beautiful ducks ever. If you can get a close up, I'd love to see it. We only had one visit when I lived on the houseboat, then a seal ate it! See you at the pool on Friday. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  6. Such fascinating pictures from your wonderful trip, Gracie! I enjoyed reading about the things you did and seeing some famous views, as well as the lovely light houses and bright flowers. And the little pioneers in their bonnets.....just adorable!
    Have a happy homely week.
    Helen xox

  7. Wow! What a trip. And I hope it brought back happy,if poignant memories. Your girls look so sweet and I loved that book so much

  8. Gracie I read your post and got goose bumps all over. The memories, the thoughtfulness of your captions and those gorgeous wee girlies! Glad you had a good time and keep drawing those flowers they are superb. Jo x

  9. Hello Gracie, what a glorious trip you had. Spring is such a beautiful time of year out West. Thanks for sharing all your fabulous photos with us. Hugs judt

  10. How beautiful Gracie! I am so glad you enjoyed such a lovely trip. Thanks for sharing all your photos with us....I really enjoyed looking at them!
    xx Shari

  11. Hi Gracie! I loved all of your wonderful photos! The California Coastline, and Oregon too, are some of the most beautiful in the world, I think! My son went to Monterey State for a while, and didn't like the area or the weather. But I love it! I loved your commentary, and reading about where you and your husband had your first date! I remember reading The Little House books and loving them so. My girls too. Love the bonnets! Welcome home, and have a great day!!
    xo Kris

  12. I have been looking forward to seeing more of your pictures of the sea. They are wonderful and I love those light houses too. The aquarium looks huge compared with the ones in this country! Sarah x

  13. What a wonderful trip Gracie, thanks so much for sharing with us. However, I bet it is really nice to be back home too!


  14. Your trip sounds wonderful Gracie and I. enjoyed your photos. Oh my the girls look cute in their bonnets. I love Little House on the Prairie. Anne x

  15. I always enjoy seeing your photos from a far away land. Looks like you have been having a great time.

  16. Yay, the giant artichoke!!! You know, the food wasn't awesome. EVERYTHING had artichoke in it, really it was a bit much. But the building is neat. It looks like you had a wonderful trip. I love that area and I'm glad you enjoyed your visit.

  17. Such beautiful pictures of Monterey, a very special place in my heart! Welcome back to Portland! You picked an excellent time to return, this spring weather is wonderful!

  18. Stunning picture of your wonderful trip.
    Clare x

  19. Wow Gracie, you have such wonderful adventures - and how meaningful to recapture your sweet memories as you went over the GGB! I thank you so much for all your lovely pics and captions and allowing us to swoon over your beautiful grand-daughters once again. Gorgeous is not a good enough word for them! Love and blessings, Joy xo

  20. One of the best things about reading blogs is the armchair travelling you get to do! What a fab trip Gracie, thank you so much for sharing it with us.

  21. Your photos are just wonderful Gracie! I loved the photo of the jellyfish in the aquarium....and all of you look great in your bonnets :)
    Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful time with us x x

  22. Wow! It was great to see all of your Northern California photos--it has been so, so long since I last visited San Francisco, Monterrey and parts north of there. Looks like you had a wonderful time:)
    PS: LOVE the pioneer clothes!

  23. What a beautiful post, it looks like you had lots of fun and your photographs are brilliant! I need to get back to the USA soon, there is so much I want to see!


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