Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bucket List

photo of buckets on the beach by Nancy Zavada
These four matching buckets were sitting on the beach right next to each other close to the waves. There didn't appear to be any small or large kids nearby. For the hour or so we were on the beach, they never moved.

Perhaps they were "art" or just washed up into this perfect formation.

Monday, August 29, 2011

That's Neap

photo of wave taken from Cape <span class=Celestial Mechanic Bob and I have been observing that the same days the high tides are really high on the Oregon Coast, the low tides are really low. We also noticed this phenomenon happened during full moons and new moons which lead me to believe that witches and pagans were somehow involved. Well, possibly, but it turns out science has an explanation too and has determined two specific types of tides.

Spring tides have the largest tidal range and these coincide with either a new moon or a full moon. The term, Spring, refers to “jumping or moving forward” not to the season. So when a storm moves onshore during a high spring tide (as in Hurricane Irene last weekend) it gives extra cause for concern as the consequences can be severe. Low spring tides are good for clamming.

On the other hand…

Neap tides result in less extreme tidal conditions and occur during waxing and waning moons. The tidal range is at a minimum, slack water time is longer and the tidal currents are not as strong. No one seems clear about where the term Neap came from, although I have a theory on that too. Neap is derived from the noise, “Neap, neap…neap, neap,” made by those fuzzy two-headed characters on Sesame Street as they bounce around the screen causing trouble.

So we learned something today and are another step closer to solving all of the mysteries of the universe. We now turn our attention to answering to the age-old question, “Why is the ocean water so dang cold in the summer on the Oregon Coast?”

Thanks to Sesame Street and Wikipedia for clearing this up.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

It is Good to Have Wishes!

I am fairly certain that given a cape and a nice tiara, I could save the world!

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Mermaid Chair

photo of garden in Rockaway Beach oregon
All week long I wait (not so) patiently for Friday afternoon. Glorious Friday afternoon when I switch off my computer and cell phone, grab a good book and head out to the yard to the Mermaid Chair. There she waits, outlandishly pink surrounded by flowers and warm from the sun. Perfect for this mermaid!

Each time I settle in, I take a moment to give thanks for this life and all of those who love me so.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

A (Bath)room With a View

photo of porta-potty in Tillamook Bay Oregon
There is a viewpoint on Tillamook Bay just south of Garibaldi. This is the view--a floating porta-potty right in the middle of the scene.

Now as picturesque as it is at sunrise on a summer day, couldn't they have located it just a tad to either the north or south of this wayside. It is not as if you can park and swim out to it and I don't think the fishermen care, but what do I know.

Miss the Beach?

Me too!

Whenever I am not physically at the shore, I like to do the next best thing, check the webcam It may take a minute to load, so be patient, it is the coast.

This camera is mounted on a hotel in Rockaway Beach, with a view of the ocean and Twin Rocks. It would also have a view of the Emily G. Reed shipwreck if she weren't buried in sand. One day I watched a dad try desperately to launch a kite for his son on a windless day, but mostly I just check to make sure the ocean is still there awaiting my return. Now you can too!

(Thanks to the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce for the link)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Beauty Within

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
~Albert Einstein

(In the early days of x-ray machines, scientists took the opportunity to study a variety of objects. This is a 1910 x-ray of a sea shell which exemplifies the quote above.
Original source: unknown

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Next Generation

photo of deer in Rockaway Beach Oregon
This sweet thing was looking for happy hour refreshments in our backyard yesterday. His elders must have told him to stop by my garden for an snack.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Memories, Old and New

While the full moon made it impossible to view the meteor shower this year, there was still plenty of celebrating this weekend for Bob. You see, the pirate cousins thought it would be an entertaining rite of passage prove their prowess by drinking Old Man Bob under the table. So, working together they proceeded to convince him to take many straight shots of many types of liquor. The revelry continued until one by one, the younger generation hit the deck and the old man was still standing. They were right about one thing, it was quite entertaining. Although I don't believe they anticipated being the entertainment.

Here are some statistics which tell the tale of the rest of the weekend:

  • 37 crabs hoisted aboard for the birthday feast
  • 5 bags of ice to keep them cold
  • 9 of us experiencing the sights and smells of the Tillamook County Fair
  • 2 hours to get us all ready to go to the Fair (babies included)
  • 3.5 gallons of water to re-hydrate the pirates
  • 12 loads of laundry, all socks accounted for
  • 1 cribbage tournament with "The Parents" beating their children
  • 12 hours a day of amazing sunshine
4 generations together sharing stories of good times past and making new memories. Now that is worth celebrating!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Heaven Sent

Tomorrow is Birthday Bob’s special day. The family pirates and mermaids are gathering together to celebrate his birthday at Saltair Station. Several of the “cousins” are on leave from exploring the world and we are getting reacquainted again (cousins is the term I use for the next generation of scallywags, now mostly in their twenties, in our very blended family). It will be a festive day for sure!

Being a true Leo, Bob also thinks The Perseid Meteor shower has been scheduled in his honor. Something about how heaven must have sent him here. Being a true Virgo, I let him believe this. I will say this about the meteor showers though, if you have never seen them, get out of the city lights this weekend, kick back and watch a very dazzling show.

My thanks to wikipedia for providing the following details:
Each year, the Earth passes through the debris of a comet called the Swift-Tuttle. This debris burns up in our atmosphere to form what we see as meteors or shooting stars. The Perseid Meteor shower is at its peak during mid-August. In the US, it peaks on the night of August 12, 2011, and into the early morning of August 13. During a peak, at least 50–60 meteors can be observed during each hour. Considered the best and brightest meteor show of the year by many, it's a great opportunity to go outside and check out nature's own dramatic show. Note: The full moon may obscure some of the showers this year.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Be Careful What You Ask For

I have been seeing faces in a variety of objects recently which really didn't surprise my family. Secretly, I became a little concerned and asked The Universe for a little reprieve. I should have known there would be some sort of prankster backlash to my request, a subtle reminder not to take myself so seriously.

It didn't take long. When we harvested our first tomato this year, a different part of the human body was prominently featured. Perhaps the faces weren't so bad!

This photo is slightly blurred, which is for the best as the tomato is anatomically correct.

Riddle Me This

How can I be sitting on a log having coffee with my sister with the salt air mist brushing my face...when my body is still sitting at my desk?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Barefoot In The Park

photo of Bob at Rockaway Beach Oregon City Park
This is Bob's summertime leg color.
He's not wearing white socks,
He wouldn't even wear sandals,
for his first 56 years.

Recently he stepped out of his comfort zone,
He walked barefoot in the grass
during the jazz concert,
all the way to the "Wine Tent"
To get another glass.

Perhaps, he finally had the proper motivation,
who knew?

Monday, August 1, 2011


Do you see the hummingbird in this photo? Well, he doesn't think you can.

The hummingbirds were very busy in the front yard over the weekend, poking at their favorite flowers in bloom, screeching at each other and generally darting every which way. Every so often, they stopped to rest. I was darting around myself trying to capture them on film and they were having none of it.

After a few tries, I realized they would sit quite still if I didn't make eye contact with them, but as soon as I peeked around a bloom and looked into their eyes, they flew away. So I tested my theory by playing this game with several birds. Sure enough, even if their whole body was in plain sight, as long as their eyes were covered they thought they were invisible. Just like a toddler--what fun!

Note: by the way, these little guys have lousy hours. Last night, they were still working at 9:00pm (just before dark). This morning, I was outside at 5:30am (thanks, Bob) and they were back noisily at work. I am not sure if it was light out because I don't open my eyes that early.