Winchester Bay, Oregon

Good morning, my friends. We're back from our little beach getaway. All my pictures are edited and uploaded, and so we can get busy catching up. I hope you've had a good week, and that nobody got sick while I was gone. Also, before I go on, thank you to those of you who stopped by to see my art quilt reveal

It was cool and cloudy for our journey to the sea, although the sun came out shortly after we arrived. It was too late to think about hitting the dunes, and so we took a little walk around the harbor.

We made a few friends along the way.

We walked out to our favorite carved wooden bench and sat for a bit.

Winchester Bay is near the city of Reedsport, Oregon. You can see some pretty aerial photography of the area at the Oregon Visitor's Association website, right here. We've come every year for the past several years. I didn't take a lot of pictures of the surrounding area because I've written about this several times before. You can find the post about our visit from last year right here, and there are two more links to previous visits within that post. But, of course, I took pictures of every blooming thing. 

We were staying in the "B" loop of Windy Cove Campground, which is a county park. We had full hook-ups. It's a nice campground. There is a fancier private RV park across the street from the county park. For our money, the county campground is just fine. These were blooming across the way from us.

On the morning of our second day, I went straight to work sewing the binding on The Neighborhood quilt. Before we mounted our mechanical horses to leave for the dunes, I'd stitched around three corners.

We waited for the sun to make an appearance around noon, and then we were on our way. There was a "Dune Fest" event that muddied the waters of fun for a bit. They claimed to have rented the entire dune area for a private event, and tried to prevent us from crossing over to where we wanted to ride. A white wrist band was required to gain entry. And let me just say that we don't need no stinking wrist bands. I pointed out to them that the dunes are a part of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, and a part of our public lands. I'm not sure my argument swayed them, but when they learned we were staying in the campground, they let us through. We had to ride through a phalanx of RVs parked in the sand (probably getting stuck) and offensive political flags. When we reached the other side, we enjoyed our ride. The forest grows to the ocean here, interrupted only by dunes in some places.

Here's a pano of the area. It stretches for many miles along the Oregon coast. You can see the Pacific Ocean in the distance. We aren't able to ride on the beach here, but there are places along the stretch of the Oregon Dunes NRA where we can.

On our return to the campground, I stopped to take a photo of the Umpqua River Lighthouse, even though I've already taken at least a dozen pictures of it on previous visits. There's value in tradition, you know.

Back at the RV, I finished off my quilt binding.

And there's my finished quilt.

We took it out to the carved wooden bench for its glamour shot.

On our walk back, I stopped to take a picture of these blooming grasses. I don't know what kind this is, but it's something we don't see farther inland.

I tried out a new recipe while we were there. This is 4-Ingredient Baked Chicken. With just four ingredients, it was pretty darned easy and tasty. I made mine super easy by preparing it as written, and then cooking it for six hours on low in my slow cooker. It worked out great, and I'll be making this again and again while we're traveling. I used boneless, skinless, chicken thighs.

Regarding the ingredients, our store didn't have "Wishbone" brand French dressing, and so I just opted for the store brand. I used Lipton onion soup mix, and I used the apricot preserves already opened in the refrigerator. The recipe specifies a "small jar." I don't know the definition for that, but I'm going to guesstimate I had about 8 oz. (one cup) left in my jar. I used all of it. We had that along with some of the corn frozen from last summer's garden. We watched the sun set as we ate our dinner.

Day is done.

I'd anticipated a stitching emergency, and so I brought along my latest embroidery piece and made some more progress on that.

Since I'm dispossessed of my sewing room for who-know-how-long, I'm going to have to depend on slow-stitching for my August OMG. My goal for the month is to finish off this somewhat large piece.

Well, no camping trip is complete unless I make something for dessert at least once. I used another jar of the sweet cherry pie filling made from last year's cherries. It was very tasty with some vanilla ice cream.

We had less difficulty getting through the gauntlet for our second day's ride. Just to give you some idea of what we were dealing with, here's just a small section of the folks who were there. Take a look at all the RV's and OHV's (off highway vehicles). I'm going to estimate this shows only about 25% of the people who were there. 

I managed to avoid getting any of the political flags in the image above, but believe me...they were all around is. There were enough confederate flags to make us wonder if we'd stumbled into a KKK rally. And please excuse this little rant of mine: Families gather in places like this. There are children present. Flags that use words like "F*ck" should be prohibited. There. I've said it. Sorry, I'm not sorry.

We cheated a little as non-participants, and paused to watch some of the OHV drag racing. That's Mike on the left in the image below, and that's his mechanical horse, Blue.

We rode for a couple of hours and then headed back to the campground. It was our last full day there. We took another walk around the marina. These rosehips were growing in our campsite.

Across the way, we wandered through a memorial rose garden, and I took pictures of some of the prettiest of the roses.

This pink one was very fragrant, and indeed, the whole garden smelled heavenly.

This next one's for you, Texas.

Wandering through the marina, we spied this gang of cormorants.

They were keeping the seals awake.

This one must have had a nest nearby. It was not at all happy about our presence, and it strafed us, calling out warnings, and then nearly pooping on Mike in mid-flight.

The cormorants chimed in, singing the song of their people.

We decided to give the gull a break, and retreated fairly quickly. That was the end of our day. 

We visited a quilt shop in Reedsport on our way home. I'll tell you about it in a separate post.

About ten to twenty miles out of town, there is an Elk Preserve. We've always just driven by, but we stopped on this day. Mike likes to check the tie-down straps on the ATV's before we get too far along. They can stretch and loosen as we drive along. 

We don't always see elk here, but more often than not there are at least a few. There was a rather large herd on this day. They were far off the road, and so I couldn't get very good pictures of them, but I got a few.

These bulls were off in a different area. Check out the antlers on these big boys.

Speaking of bulls, the kitties were so happy to get outside once we got home. They headed straight for their own grazing area. Think of the Three Cats Ranch as a Feline Preserve.

Walking around, I noticed we have ripe cherry tomatoes! The squirrels must be on vacation because they left these for us.

Also, the echinacea are blooming to beat the band. 

The pink ones have joined the party now. The ones above grow only to about knee height. The pink ones below grow tall and leggy, and so I use a tomato cage to keep them upright.

The bees love them. We still have some daylilies, but they are fading fast.

There were a few ripe blueberries...that was fun to see. I'm going to estimate this year's crop can be counted on two hands. Mike ate one recently. I tasted the first one yesterday. They taste just like blueberries, which is always a relief when I grow something myself. It's only the first year for these, and we should start getting more berries in subsequent seasons.

And that brings me to this morning. It was probably good to give the kitties some alone time...like putting a sheet over a bird cage. They needed a low-stim environment to get their heads on straight after all the chaos of last week. Smitty takes it mostly in stride, but Sadie has been substantially tweaked. This morning she was able to settle down on my lap, and I left her cocooned in her favorite quilt.

As for our basement project, there's nothing new to report. We'd hoped the carpet would be installed today, but we've heard nothing more about it. If it isn't today, we're promised it will be Monday. I remain skeptical. I'm hopeful they'll get it done in the coming week, however, and I've realized if they can get the carpet laid down, the rest of the job can wait until we get home from our Great Lakes tour. They will have to move the furniture back into the house. 

I've been stressing about them getting the job completely done for weeks. Now I'm realizing the most important parts are getting the carpet done, and moving the furniture back in. It can just be stacked in the middle of the room while we're gone, and they can finish up the baseboards and painting when we get back, if necessary. This would be the least favorable outcome, but it would at least allow us to take off on our trip with some peace of mind. The downside, of course, is returning to a home still in chaos.

All we can do is keep bugging them and keep crossing our fingers. The wheels of progress turn slowly. As I've been watching the weird weather in other areas and the catastrophic flooding, I've been counting my blessings that our job will be finished before those unfortunate folks will be able to put their lives back in order. It's good to maintain one's perspective.

Okay, so most of the day will be spent unpacking. There's nothing else on the agenda beyond slow-stitching. If I get itchy to sew something by machine, I can always get started quilting the "I Believe in Snowmen" quilt.

I'm getting hungry for breakfast. I'll be back later today or tomorrow morning to tell you about the quilt shop.


Barbara said...

Seabirds evoke the spirit of the earth`s wildest places. They spend large portions of their lives at sea, often far from land, and nest on beautiful remote islands that humans rarely visit. ~ Michael Brooke

Julierose said...

Nice getaway--the elk are really beautiful animals--I think you got some great photos of them. I really like "Believe in snowmen" quilt--all that lovely red and white...what a nice quilt to wrap up in--altho for us, here and now, it is SUPER hot!! And muggy with a murkey sky--yuck. I managed to slip out early this morning and get my hair cut and styled--so that always makes you feel better;)))
Hugs, Julierose

Jean said...

I've made that 4 ingredient chicken several times and we always love it. I haven't made it in a while so thanks for reminding me. Loved all your pic of the Oregon coastline; brings back memories of when we were there in 2015.

CA Bobbie said...

The attitude of telling others "they" aren't allowed seems to go hand in hand with the offensive political
flags. It seems to be so in & around SD. Nuff said, Glad for the lovely blooming things and the fantastic dunes.

CA Bobbie said...

Ok, so I put my soapbox away, I'm so sorry Sadie gets stressed by the strangers. We had a lovely kitty that hid whenever anyone came around. The boys were young so we had to keep the hiding places available at a moments notice in case friends came along. Do so love the red and white , alomost as much as I love the blue and white pallet.

Jay said...

I live in Ohio, with neighbors who have a yard full of flagpoles carrying a whole series of really offensive political flags, right on a very busy road. can't imagine the mentality that finds this kind of display acceptable. I try to live and let live, but this really takes the cake.
Your pictures of the roses, especially, are breathtaking! I can almost smell that heavenly scent. I spent many years maintaining hybrid roses with little to no scent and realized too late that the heirlooms were where I should have started. Live and learn!

Quilting Babcia said...

Those yummy tomatoes look like SunGolds? We've been harvesting 10-20 per day and totally enjoying their juicy sweetness. Looking forward to the quilt shop post, I think we visited that shop last time we were in Oregon, but my memory is a bit dim on that point. Those roses were gorgeous. Thankfully our neighbors mostly fly the American flag proudly and quite a few fly a version that commemorates fire and other first responders. It's all volunteer firefighters around here and they do a yeoman's job.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

You would think the legalality folks would have been doing something about the illegal attempts to close a recreation area to the public. And I'm with you in the public use of the 'f' word (and I'm not sorry either!). I'm afraid I've been known to risk my life by telling young people to 'watch your mouth' - a kneejerk reaction that was common when my boys were testing the waters.
Another pretty quilt finish and a perfect spot for a glamour shot too.
That chicken looks so good so might have to run that one by Resident Chef.
And oh - those roses. I can almost smell them!

CarolE said...

I love what you did with the birdhouse stitchery, and you also did a great job on your fox quilt. Thanks for sharing again all the pretty pictures from your trip. Such a shame about the flags.

Lyndsey said...

Looks like a great get away even with the problems. I'm please you didn't let it ruin the trip.

Susan said...

Those are some gorgeous roses. Will have to try that 4-ingredient chicken recipe.

piecefulwendy said...

Looks like a fun trip! I didn't know you could rent a dune (I learn so much from your posts)! I'm not a fan of that word on anything, to be honest, and I detest political signs of any nature. You even had cranky gulls - maybe they didn't like the dune traffic either - LOL. Your flower photos are gorgeous!