Saturday, June 25, 2016

Merc Shows Well

 Hodaka Days in Athena, Oregon is a huge thing. The Weston McEwen Booster Club piggy backed on with a car/bike show to help support the sports programs at the HS. Talk was last year's was much larger. It would have been nice to have a few more cars, but I sure enjoyed the experiences I had today! OK-cept for the almost ridiculous sunbroil. I'm going to have to wear blues and blacks for a bit to tone down the bright pink!

We were parked next to some awesome rigs. The blue Firebird won best of show, the black rig below had some incredible suspension things, the red car right next to the Mercury had been fixed up after an encounter with a gal who not only didn't see a red light, but totally missed seeing the red car.

There were so many stories told today. I enjoyed talking to people about the car and the history, as we knew it. One of my favorite comments after a lady looked it over was, "They used to paint kitchens this color." I looked at t he Merc and imagined appliances, tile, and counter tops in this bright blue and white! So many visitors loved seeing what was coined as a 'Survivor'. She's not fancy and that caught a great deal of attention, as well. Her interior was highly praised as we are sure it is still the same one it had when she was purchased in May 1956. One man who sat in the car (I didn't let many, but the ones who did were truly appreciative), said the scent and the colors reminded him of way back when. 
 This pup rode in the side car wearing a helmet to match the bike and car. He also has goggles, but didn't have those on cuz it wasn't a drive where he needed them (just across the field).
This guy had a cool bike with a matching 'car-go' carrier he pulled. The carrier looked like a vintage car. I enjoyed Elvis. I'm not sure it was intentional, but today was windy and the hand on the cardboard image kept waving!! 

 Out in the streets, Hodakas buzzed past. The names are whimsical, the drivers have a camaraderie which binds them together closer than tires hitting the road, and their enjoyment is infectious.

 You can see smoke rising in the sunshine from the revving engines.
 Back in the car lot! Logos gleamed as the sun hit them. Who doesn't love a shiny Mustang????

 I do adore a pretty Ford!!!

The rig below has a varnished stick of wood to help hold the hood open. I liked the idea and suggested something similar for the Merc. We had the hood open today, but you couldn't see the fancy ornament on top. The suggestion was shelved for further consideration.
 Paint jobs on the different vehicles were incredible. One woman shared about a paint job she had seen which looked like lines and an odd blob shape...Until you looked closer. She said the stripes were blue and pink and the odd blobs were a 'boy' chasing a 'girl' around the car! These paint etchings were nothing more than lovely colors and designs. Fun, though!
 This Rat Rod was parked right next to us. The best comment on this rig? 'It's a vehicle with a sense of humor.' Rusted holes were patched with old license plates from anywhere, there were spiderwebs on the windshield, The metal horns on the front had barbed wire wrapped around them. It seemed each time you looked at it, there was something new!
 This car drove past while awards were being given out. I was kind of glad it hadn't been in the show. It is a Buick  from the same year as the Mercury or a bit older. Sweet ride! However, with two  cars in the same category, I'm not sure Steve would have won an award. Especially since the school colors are red/white/black and a lot of people who voted were from Athena!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Make it, bake it, eat it!

What do you do when you are reading books with recipes? Cook!!! The bread was from a recipe a friend sent. It is a cheesy bread with cojack/parmesan and I threw in some garlic flavored Mrs. Dash. When I make dough, I cheat and use the bread machine. It works VERY well! 
 It rose quite a bit too much since I stuck it in the addition to rise--where it was warm. It also got a little lopsided! 
 However, it baked quite well. I would have preferred a denser loaf, but as I said, it rose too far. It is supposed to rise just over the edge of the pan. As you can see, it rose quite a bit above the pan!
 The outside has flecks in it-you can see the cheeses and spices. The inside doesn't show much, but the flavor is amazing! It has a lovely chewy crust.
It went well with the beef stew I had planned. Yeah, it was 88 degrees today, but when you have ingredients for something, you gotta use them! 
 For dessert and lunches, I thought I'd make brownies using a recipe from one of Ruth Reich's books. I took several photos, but alas..they didn't turn out well. I don't think the brownies did what they were supposed to, either. However, the verdict from Jon was brownies should be all gooey and Steve said they were good. This recipe came from her book 'Tender at the Bone.' (I wonder if I should have taken a photo and posted it.......thankfully, the picture is a bit fuzzy!)

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Another Nook

I love quiet private nooks. I've been attracted to them since I was a young child. I'd hide in out of the way places with books, finding special spots no one else knew about. Living on the Oregon Coast, my entire back yard was in an out of the way spot. I wanted to make a haven in Eastern Oregon, I think it is almost ready. The ladybugs have always liked it, I hope people will, too! 
 It has taken several trials to get the place where I kind of like it. The photo below was taken in April of 2014. It has grown a lot since then.
In 2011 Jon, for one of his Eagle badges, created a pond/stream ecosystem for the yard. Eventually, we blocked up the stream and turned it into a dry creek bed. The locusts and chokecherry were too much work for this lazy mom!!!!! Those leaves, berries, and blossoms were a pain to dig out from the rocks in the stream. The pond is more than enough and you can see how small it is. 

The pink bathtub I wanted to put strawberries or petunias in has evolved to a container over which the hops grow. And the cute stairway to nowhere is perfect for the cats. (the photo below was a few years ago)
This year, after I made the garden bling with the space theme, I decided to take out a part of the chokecherry tree/bush thing. I had to be careful. I wanted to protect what little of the spice bush plant there is. Last year, this plant still had several flowers on it. This year, there were none. (photo taken in 2010)

 I used several dead lilac branches while I was putting my ideas in order. They add definition, are easy to find, and help hold different kinds of things. I used one above a fairy garden, I'll probably add metal butterflies or flowers. My garden needs more things in it for young visitors to play with.
 I also used a branch to help hold up the plant in the blue bucket. Rose Campion gets really tall and leggy. When it is planted in groups, they hold each other up. This pot has a single large bunch and needed help showing off.
 The birds love places to sit. I've had a LARGE  lilac piece since 2008 which was just sitting in the garden. Steve hung the feeder Jon got me this spring over the branch, marrying the two nicely.  I especially appreciate the seeds falling into a dead area of the yard. Not much grows in this spot, so it is ok to have it littered with seed.
 All in all, I'm pleased with how things are turning out in my backyard. I like the peace found in the colors and the privacy.  The quiet burble of the water in the pond paired with birdsong make a perfect spot to read or take a nap on the grass if I want!

Saturday, June 04, 2016

Different Points of View

 Seeing the ranch from the lens of each son. They take similar photos, yet the subject matter is a bit different! Most of their time was at the Upper Place.

 I was glad Tony took these. It is always good to have documentation of getting stuck and needing your dad to pull you out. These are from the Lower Place.

Sunset over the towns.