Happy Turkey Day from John Day!

Happy Turkey Day from John Day, Oregon! We saw about one hundred wild turkeys alongside the road near John Day a few weeks ago. Dinner anyone?

Happy Turkey Day

They have become so common in some areas, that they are considered pests. They sometimes destroy crops and gardens and can become aggressive towards people in the breeding season.

Wild turkeys crossing the highway

Oregon created a Hunt by Reservation Program where private landowners can allow hunters onto their land to help thin out the population. A benefit to them and us!

Let us (or lettuce) be grateful: Macro Monday

Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.

Marcel Proust
Let us (lettuce)

A little play on the words “let us” with this up close picture of lettuce growing in Hollinshead Park’s community garden in Bend, Oregon.

Macro Monday

The touch of nature: LAPC

The touch of nature can be sharp and cold or

The touch of nature
Prickly pear cactus in the snow, Bend, Oregon

Ridged and dry

Dry reservoir
Low water in Wickiup Reservoir, Oregon

The touch of nature can be smooth and wet or

The touch of nature
Cobble Beach near Newport, Oregon

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Morning on a fall day cinquain poem: SoCS

Morning
On a fall day
Brilliant colors appear
Merging into luminous wings
Soaring

Morning on a fall day

Stream of Consciousness Saturday – Morning

Remnants of a Solitary Life: Monochrome Monday

I found these remnants of a solitary life in my yard yesterday. This is what was left of a Townsend’s Solitaire thrush. I suspect one of our resident Cooper’s Hawks preyed upon it. The cycle of nature continues.

Remnants of a solitary life

Monochrome Monday

Backyard Beauties in Bend: LAPC

I see some of our backyard beauties often, like the chipmunks. This one came right up to our sliding glass door, driving our indoor cat crazy. It was showing me its best side.

Chipmunk on porch

Other animals give us unique views. This immature Cooper’s Hawk posed nicely for me on the back porch.

Backyard beauties Cooper's Hawk

Our regular visitors can be very entertaining. Playful Mule Deer fawns like to run full speed around the yard (when they aren’t busy munching on my plants).

Mule deer fawn

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Fence of Gold: Thursday Tree Love

I saw this fence of gold near Mitchell, Oregon last week. Aspen trees, decked out in golden leaves, looked like someone planted them at regular intervals within the evergreen forest.

Fence of gold

Thursday Tree Love 137

The blur of autumn: Weekly Haiku & Sunday Stills

The blur of fall

the blur of autumn
catcher of fading colors
thoughts of winter’s chill

Autumn leaves

Weekly haiku prompt challenge – Catcher & thought

Sunday Stills – Paths & trails take you to happy places

Lighter and darker nature pictures: LAPC

I’m showing lighter and darker nature pictures to go with the lens-artists photo challenge of “exposure” this week. Sometimes I frame a shot with lighter and darker settings; other times I make changes during the photo editing process.

The first two pictures are of maidenhair fern growing along the trail in Silver Falls State Park. In this case I like both versions. Maybe it’s because I like all shades of green. 🙂

The next two pictures show a mountain peak near Mitchell, Oregon. The first shows the structure of the rimrock at the peak and the second brings out the clouds. I prefer the darker, more evil-looking, version.

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Indian peacock drawing & photos: First Friday Art

Today I’m sharing a quick pen-and-ink drawing of an Indian peacock I drew. This was for the month-long Inktober drawing challenge. The prompt that day was “ego.” When male peacocks prance around displaying their tail feathers I think of them as being proud, egotistical birds. In reality, they are trying to attract mates and protect their territory.

Peacock drawing by Siobhan Sullivan

Here’s a photo I took of a proud Indian peacock. I increased the color saturation when I processed it to bring out his beautiful blue and green colors.

Proud peacock

When I think of peacocks here in Central Oregon, I think of Richardson’s Rock Ranch in Madras. They have a large indoor and outdoor rock shop and peacocks wander freely around the buildings.

Here’s a photo of their old family home with the birds perched on the front porch and foraging in the front yard. Can you see the pheasant decoration on the side of the building? The peafowl must have been attracted to it since they are also part of the pheasant family, Phasianidae.

Richardson's Rock Ranch

Do you have artwork you would like to share? Be sure to include the First Friday Art tag.

First Friday Art (FFA)

Quit bugging me! : Wordless Wednesday

Quit bugging me

Quit bugging me! Song sparrow in bug hatch at Summer Lake, Oregon.

Wordless Wednesday

Halloween greetings from my cat

Just wanted to share some Halloween greetings from my cat, Motor. He was one of our favorite pets. Small in size but big in personality!

Halloween greetings

Pets

Spruce Goose is a sight to see: LAPC

Last month, we took a trip to see the Spruce Goose at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum. This museum is in McMinnville, about 50 miles southwest of Portland, Oregon. Its star attraction is the airplane associated with Howard Hughes, Jr.

In 1942, steel magnate Henry Kaiser approached Hughes about creating a massive flying boat. Hughes was well known for breaking records as a pilot, including a 1935 landplane airspeed record of 352 miles per hour. In 1938, Hughes flew around the world in 3 days 19 hours 17 minutes, beating the previous record by almost four days. He was also a brilliant engineer.

After Kaiser withdrew from the flying boat project in 1944, Howard Hughes renamed the plane H-4 Hercules. It’s also called the Hughes Flying Boat and the Spruce Goose. Hughes become obsessed with the project. Though the original intention was for the aircraft to help with war efforts, by the time they completed the project, the war was over.

Hughes flew the plane on November 2, 1947. He wanted to prove it was airworthy and not just a flight of fancy. In its first and only flight, he flew it at an altitude of 70 feet for 26 seconds. The aircraft flew for about one mile at a speed of 135 miles per hour.

Exterior of the Spruce Goose

I knew the Spruce Goose was large, but I had no idea how enormous it was. I’m including several exterior photos to show the scale of this massive aircraft. The first picture shows a view from the second-story balcony.

Spruce Goose

The next two show aircraft on display under one wing and then the other. They look so small in comparison.

Under wing view

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Zigzag boardwalk: 1-to-3 Photo Challenge

I took this photo near Playa at Summer Lake in Oregon. Playa serves as a retreat for artists and scientists looking for a peaceful place to do their work. I was there for a workshop on Great Basin Natural History. This zigzag boardwalk was in a pond behind the cabins.

I’ll be showing how I processed this picture three ways with Corel PaintShop Pro 2021. Prior to trying out the various effects, I increased the contrast slightly. Slide the slider to see the before and after views.

The first two show the original photograph and the same picture with a Retro effect. For this image I went to Effects>Photo Effects>Retro Lab. This effect slightly blurs and darkens the edges and increases color saturation. I liked how this effect brought out turquoise colors in the sky and dark green in the marsh plants.

Zigzag boardwalkRetro photo effect

The next two show the original photograph and the same picture with a Black and White effect. For this image I went to Effects>Photo Effects>Black and White Film. I liked how this effect enhanced the contrast in the clouds.

Zigzag boardwalkZigzag boardwalk

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Fall maple in lava beds: WW & SS

fall maple

Fall maple in lava beds on McKenzie Highway, Oregon

Wordless Wednesday (WW)

Sunday Stills (SS) – Color Challenge – Lava

Rollin’ across the Columbia: Monochrome Monday

Rollin' across the Columbia

Rollin’ across the Columbia River near Biggs Junction, Oregon

Monochrome Monday

Peak peeks near and far: LAPC & RDP

Here are some peak peeks from near and far. These volcanic peaks are in the Cascade Mountains in Central Oregon.

The first picture shows a distant view of Mount Jefferson I took on a flight to Seattle. The small cloud hovering over its peak looks like a puff of smoke.

Peak peeks

Here’s a closer view of Mount Jefferson taken from the road near Madras, Oregon.

Mt Jefferson

This picture shows a distant view of Mount Washington. It’s the snowy peak in the middle of the photo.

Mt Washington

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This and that rock: Macro Monday

This and that rock from Fischer Canyon, Oregon. According to the Central Oregon rockhounding map, published by the Bureau of Land Management, you can find petrified wood, jasper, and agate here. Other sources list calcite and quartz as being at this site.

This small conglomerate includes several types of rock that merged together.

this and that rock
conglomerate rock

Macro Monday

Special flowers: LAPC

Today I’ll share a few stories related to special flowers in my life.

Roses

Whenever I see roses, I think of a funny thing that happened to me when I was in my early twenties. I had just started dating a guy who checked parking passes where I worked. I invited him to my cozy little A-frame house on Puget Sound in Washington state. When we got to my house, I pulled open the screen door and there was a bouquet of roses tucked next to the main door. I grinned and asked if they were from him. “No,” he said sheepishly. He pulled a bouquet of roses from behind his back. Oops. The flowers in my door were from a different admirer. Awkward!


I took these photos on the High Desert Garden Tour this summer. The tour takes place in different Central Oregon locations, from sprawling rural ranches to tiny city yards. This year the featured gardens were in Bend.

Hibiscus

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Abundance of flowers: Friday Flowers

There are an abundance of flowers growing along the path near the Hayden Homes Amphitheater in Bend, Oregon. I always look forward to walking there in the late summer and early fall months. Can you see why?

Abundance of flowers

Friday Flowers

Greetings from Bend mural: Monday Mural

Here’s a picture of the new “Greetings from Bend, Oregon” mural. This mural is near the flag bridge in the Old Mill district in Bend. It’s on the Mill A Loop trail, where I walk regularly.

This colorful mural is by artist Karen Eland. I’m a big fan of her artwork and have previously featured her work in Bend. She collaborated with five other artists on this work in the Foxtail Bakery in the Box Factory district.

Foxtail closed in January 2022. The restaurant currently at that location, Papi Chulo’s Taqueria, has new murals adorning their walls. More murals for me to seek out and share!

Greetings from Bend mural

Karen features local flora and fauna in this Greetings from Bend, Oregon mural. This mural includes columbine, lupine, and paintbrush flowers. A Western Tanager perches on “From” and a Rufous Hummingbird hovers over “Oregon.” Tiger swallowtail butterflies flit about the edges and a honeybee perches on a flower in a corner. Cascade volcanoes float in the background and the iconic smokestacks of the Old Mill stand tall in the foreground.

You can see another example of Karen’s work in this mural in Sisters, Oregon. She collaborated on that piece with fellow artist Katie Daisy .

Monday Mural

South Falls from 3 perspectives: LAPC

Here are photographs of South Falls from 3 perspectives. This 177-foot high waterfall is located along the Trail of Ten Falls in Silver Falls State Park in Sublimity, Oregon. South Falls and Upper North Falls are the only trails where dogs, on leash, are allowed.

The first picture shows a distant view from the overlook trail in afternoon light.

South Falls

The next photograph shows a closer view of the falls.

Waterfall

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Hibiscus photo & drawings: First Friday Art

For this First Friday Art post, I’m sharing a hibiscus photo and a few drawings. I took this picture of a Spin the Bottle Hibiscus, Hibiscus rosa-sinensis, at the Oregon Garden in Silverton, Oregon. I’m not sure who came up with the common name, but it’s a funny one!

Hibiscus

I’m sharing a quick pen-and-ink drawing I did of Hibiscus flowers. I’m participating in Inktober, a challenge where you make a drawing a day for a month based on prompts.

I tend to fuss over my artwork a lot, so for this challenge, I’m trying to draw fast. You create a different kind of artwork when working quickly. Is it perfect? No, but it’s a freeing experience. The goal is to capture the essence of your subject.

You can interpret the prompts any way you want to. Here was my interpretation of ‘bouquet’ from the October 5 prompt.

Hibiscus bouquet
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Where hula hoops come from: MM

Did you ever wonder where hula hoops come from? I think I found out. They’re grown from tiny round seeds at the community garden in Hollinshead Park in Bend. 😁

Hula hoop farm

Monochrome Monday (MM)

Find special surprises: LAPC & TTC

Find treasures on walks

When out and about taking pictures, you never know when you might find special surprises. This delightful dragon sculpture was at The Oregon Garden in Silverton, Oregon. It brought a little cheer into a cloudy day.

Find special surprises Silverton

Though not as much is in bloom at this time of year, I was happy to see these fall-blooming crocus at the The Oregon Garden last week.

Fall crocus

Find special surprises in the skies

Here’s the last glimpse of the sun going down on a nearly cloudless day near Waldport, Oregon.

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Visit Upper North Falls: Pull up a seat

Last week we took a trip to Silver Falls State Park, in Sublimity, Oregon. We went on a short hike to visit Upper North Falls. Lush vegetation and towering trees surround the trail.

The Trail of Ten Falls in this park passes by ten waterfalls along a 7.2-mile moderate level route. Upper North Falls and South Falls are the only parts of the trail where dogs, on leash, are allowed.

 Visit Upper North Falls

We stayed a couple of nights at the campground in the park. There are cabins, RV and tent sites available for rental. This beautiful park is very popular so be sure to reserve in advance here.

Pull up a seat

On the other side: LAPC & WWP

On the other side of darkness,
it may be difficult to find a clear path ahead

On the other side
Lava Butte, Oregon

The journey towards a viable future
may be surrounded by ghosts of what once was

Santiam Highway
Remnants of fire, Santiam Highway, Oregon

Meander between colorful boulders haphazardly blocking the trail
in a landscape dark and unfathomable

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Clean dog to a dirty dog: LAPC & FF

How can your canine companions go so quickly from being a clean dog to a dirty dog?

Dog walking along flower border

I walked my dog recently along this trail bordered with flowers in the Old Mill district of Bend.

I often play fetch with her after we get home. The second picture shows what she looks like after she catches her ball a few times when we’ve had a little rain.

What a pretty girl! Can she sit on your lap? 😉

clean dog to a dirty dog

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge (LAPC) – Opposites

Friday Flowers (FF)

Barn beside the road: Monochrome Monday

A barn beside the road near Redmond, Oregon shown in black and white.

Barn beside the road

Monochrome Monday

Contrasts in places: LAPC & WPWC

These places show contrasts in voice, feeling, and appearance.

A place’s voice can be quiet or loud.

The quietness of a vast sandy desert

Contrasts of deserts
Alvord Desert, Oregon

And the pounding presence of a waterfall.

Multnomah Falls
Multnomah Falls, Oregon

A place can feel ethereal or slightly evil.

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Morning clouds over Bend: Skywatch Friday

Morning clouds over Bend, Oregon last Fall in a dramatic High Desert sunrise.

morning clouds over Bend

Skywatch Friday

Beauty after a tragedy: Story Swap

Today I received a little gift of beauty after a tragedy. A couple weeks ago, at a local grocery store, a young gunman killed an elderly customer, an employee that tried to stop him, and then himself. The community is still dealing with the tragedy, but is moving forward.

The store reopened today and employees were happy to see customers returning. Customers received an orchid plant as a token of the store’s appreciation. I thought it was interesting they chose to give customers orchids.

Beauty after a tragedy

Orchids are epiphytes, often growing on other plants. The host plants offer support to these beautiful plants. Orchids rely on their host plants for survival, but they don’t harm them. Orchids enrich their shared environment.

Bend, Oregon and other places are learning to deal with tragedy. We are hesitant to depend upon each other for support, but when we do, our shared communities blossom and prosper.

Find beauty after a tragedy where you can and share it with others. 🙂

Story Swap #8 – Survival

Northwest Mural Fest : LAPC & MM

In late August, while out exploring places along the Columbia River, we stumbled upon the Northwest Mural Fest in The Dalles, Oregon. Painters from all over the country met in The Dalles to create 15 murals in three days. Yes, it was a huge undertaking, literally and figuratively.

The Walldogs


The 200+ sign painters and mural artists who took part in the event belong to a group called The Walldogs. Imagine a “pack” of artists gathering in a town for a few days to create unforgettable works of art. The murals depict places, people, and products that have local significance. The murals attract tourists and give residents a sense of hometown pride.

Honoring the History


The artists working on this mural, by Anat Ronen, must not have a fear of heights. This mural portrays photographer Benjamin Gifford. He moved from the Midwest to Portland in 1888, and to The Dalles in 1896. His work highlights scenic views of the Columbia River and the scenic highway running beside it. Gifford also featured portraits of local Native Americans.

Northwest Mural Fest

The Benjamin Gifford mural is being painted on the back of the Clock Tower. This photo shows the building, built in 1883, from the front.

Clock Tower
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