Monday, January 30, 2012

Bucket list item, for sure.

Yes!  Definitely a "bucket list" item...we heard about a great opportunity to travel with one of our favorite local photographers, Henry Holdsworth, from Jackson, Wyoming.  Henry put together a small group photography tour and before we had too much time to think about all the reasons we couldn't possibly make this trip or figured out how we were going to do it, we said yes!  And now, with just less than 3 weeks to go, the excitement is building exponentially!

We'll be flying into the Kilimanjaro International Airport near Arusha, Tanzania...traveling to the Ngorongoro Crater for a couple days of safari in the crater, from there into the south-eastern part of the Serengeti for our first taste of tent camping in the wilds of Africa, and then to the West, towards the Grumeti River for another tent camping experience and more wildlife watching!  After 8 days of safari, we are headed to the island of Zanzibar for a little beach time!
Yes, the excitement is building!!!  We are going to Africa!!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Excited to share!

Okay, so this is pretty exciting for me...  My friend, Oddny Gumaer, has published her second book!  It's entitled, "Picking Flowers on Dusty Roads" and it's available through Partners and Amazon.  I just ordered several copies for my family and am excited to read it, as it was her other book, "Displaced Reflections ", which inspired my involvement with Partners and my trip this past Spring. 

Oddny has a very approachable writing style, which makes it feel like you are having a conversation with a friend.  Granted, I don't have a lot of friends who eagerly discuss the issues facing isolated ethnic groups in politically volatile Burma, but when she weaves her thoughts about being a mother, being a woman, being a Christian, and simply being becomes easy to understand her compassion for these beautiful people.

As I said, I am really excited to receive my new book, I am really excited for my friend Oddny for completing her writing, and I am particularly excited about the publication because that beautiful image on the front cover is mine!  I snapped the shutter one time as this stunning young girl walked past us down the dry creek bank...and it is one of my very favorite images (an almost life-sized one in canvas in my dining room, that is how much she stayed with me, those eyes...).  Hauntingly beautiful...and very telling of the amazing people whose lives and futures Oddny tells us about in her book, "Picking Flowers on Dusty Roads."

Friday, January 13, 2012

Another post-sunset shot.

It has been an exceptionally beautiful week here in Pacific City, Oregon.  Lots of sunshine and very little wind...really incredible weather, especially for January.  There have been surfers enjoying the waves every day, along with a few paddle boarders, a couple of kayakers, and even one crazy person swimming...well, more like squealing and flailing like he was on fire!

I've enjoyed the quiet early mornings watching the world wake up, one dog beach walker at a time, while I wake up myself with my coffee on the deck or tucked in by the fireplace reading the paper.  I managed to get a little bit of computer work done, but definitely spent more time staring at the waves than at the computer screen.  It's mesmerizing, to be sure. 

I've had some fun with my photography...even daring myself out to the very edge of Cape Kiwanda to capture a few images of the crashing waves below!  I've certainly LOVED the sunsets!  I've walked miles and miles of beach, including up and down the dunes several times, which is no small feat!  And I got to spend a beautiful day at Indian Beach thinking about my parents and how much I miss them in my day to day life.  I am so excited to be a grandparent (a "Nana") reminds me how much I would've liked my girls to have known my parents more, longer...they were really amazing people.  So, I hope I am around a long, long enjoy days like these...and days with my kids, and their kids...and maybe even their kids?!
Heading home tomorrow...excited to see my hubby at the airport!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Indian Beach.

This is Indian Beach.  To get there, you head just a little bit North out of the town of Cannon Beach, Oregon and follow the signs up a windy, forested road to Ecola State Park.  Once in the park, you head down another windy, narrow, steep, forested road to the parking lot overlooking Indian Beach.  It's a nice, quiet cove, usually pretty unpopulated, with a perfectly Oregon Coast rugged, rocky south end...and it has a special place in my heart.  It was particularly lovely this chilly January night, just after sunset.

That's the thing about sunsets...this one, the actually setting of the sun, was kind of unremarkable.  There weren't a lot of clouds in the sky, just a skiff on the horizon, so nothing really popped in the wasn't an obviously beautiful sunset.  But, if you are patient, and wearing lots of warm layers (because as soon as the sun disappears so does all the warmth in the air) might be lucky enough to get this kind of image...a beautiful, calm, vibrant reflection in the low tide.  Worth the wait (and the goose bumps)!

That's the thing about beauty in life, isn't it...sometimes you have to be patient, and really, really quiet, to appreciate it. 

Thanks Mom & Dad.