camp pioneer: w/e day 2



Sunday before last we drove about 75 miles to find Camp Pioneer, a Boy Scouts camp near the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness in the Willamette National Forest that surrounds Pine Ridge Lake.  The camp opened in 1936.  Closed for the winter, we had the place to ourselves.  The sun was shining, the fish were biting, and the air smelled wonderfully of pine needles.  I want to go back.




This is not meant to be a creepy October graveyard post. I know some will think it strange or be put off, but I've simply always found graveyards to be quiet peaceful places.  Sometimes sad, for sure (at times so personally sad I cannot go), but really a place of quiet reflection and peace.  Visiting graves of my own family members gives me a great sense of sadness, yes, but also a sense of connection and hope.  These pictures are from a very large and beautiful graveyard I used to go to quite often that I visited again recently.  The carved designs and sayings on the stones are so beautiful.  I could wander for hours looking at each one, pondering the time and people.  I especially love the angel-topped ones, which to me symbolize goodness, comfort, protection, love, and resurrection.



Have you ever realized you have completely misjudged someone?   

I experienced this recently, and I could not feel much worse about doing so.  For someone who has long felt misjudged or misunderstood, I too easily fell into judging someone else.

Notes to self:  If someone seems different then they were, don't assume the worst.  Don't jump to conclusions.  Don't get your feelings hurt and get all defensive.  Even worse, don't spread your judgy thoughts to others.  Things may in reality be the complete opposite of what you think.  That person may really need someone to notice subtle differences, for someone to really see them.  They may try to reach out, and you need to be able to see that's what they're doing without all your assumed judgements clouding your eyes.  You can be so wrong when you are sure you're so right.  Get over yourself.  Open your heart and eyes a little more. 



I'm feeling very happy and grateful for my life.  I've been blessed with a wonderful husband and son, who I love more than I can say and who give me so much love in return.  I can't wait for the days we get to be together all day.  I look forward to going out and exploring with them, or just cuddling up on the sofa with them.  I am counting the hours until I see them both again today.  My heart overflows. 

weekend day 1


What a great weekend.  We got up early Saturday morning and drove to Silverton, had a warm and cozy breakfast at O'Brien's, and then checked out the grounds of The Oregon Garden.  Their weekend harvest festival was not open until 1, so we decided to just wander around a bit.  It was surprisingly cold, but we were loving it and the flowers still in bloom there.  Next we drove back to Salem and hit E.Z. Orchards' HarvestFest.  We came home with their own cider and mulling spices and some beautiful pumpkins.  Fall is the best - the crisp air, the orange and golden colors, and wonderfully-scented everything - I love it and don't want it to end!  Why can't fall last as long as winter seems around here?



Ever since I can remember, my parents have done yearly canning of applesauce.  We had a single apple tree in our yard growing up that gave an incredible amount of apples each year.  It was the best applesauce you can imagine.  Perfection.  

It's been many years since I lived at home and helped in any way with it, so this year I wanted to spend the weekend with my parents when they canned it and get a refresher course, and also bring home some for my own immediate family.  

I heard my dad get up at 6, so I slowly and very sleepily made my way out to the kitchen, where he had everything set up the night before so we were ready to go first thing.  He cored and quartered the apples and I sliced them.  We got into a routine of doing that, then he cooked the apples and I ran them through the mill to get the sauce out.  When my mom joined us, she got the applesauce into the jars and ready for canning.  I was only able to spend about 7 hours helping as I had to get on the road home, a 5-hour drive.  

My parents kept at it and, after doing some for me, for my other sister, and for themselves, helped my older sister, who lives there and came to help as well, can an additional 70+ quarts, finishing up late Sunday night.  Wow.  My parents are approaching 80 and they still can (and freeze) some fruits and vegetables every year, not only for themselves, but for their children and grandchildren that want it.  A wonderful labor of love.



I recently went to see the quilt exhibit "Treasures from the Trunk" at the Willamette Heritage Center here in Salem.  These quilts were made by women on the Oregon Trail between 1840 and 1870.  If you get a chance, go.  They are beautiful in design and color, some simple and some complex, each with a great story.  (Here's a book I'm going to have to get that tells these stories.)  I love the idea not just of family heirlooms, but hand made heirlooms that tell a story.  I wrote about my grandmother's quilts a while back.  It's an art I hope to learn someday.
by mlekoshi