With Sock Summit behind us, Houston and I got on the road again, but not too far. Before Sock Summit we had driven from Missoula, Montana, through Walla Walla, Washington (where I had a 'trunk show', literally showing the yarn out of the trunk of the car). This time we just drove 45 minutes from Portland, to our friends, Robin and Patty's farm. They raise goats, horses and have fantastic veggie and flower gardens. We all played Ultimate Frisbee together back in the day and we actually got to see many of our old Frisbee friends on this vacation. For a totally relaxing day, R&P drove us to the Oregon coast where we sat on the beach and ate a divine lunch.
We had great weather, even a bit cool and I was happy to NOT be sitting in a convention center.
The waves crashed about and I did put my feet in for just a short time because if you don't know this about the water on the Oregon coast, well I'm here to tell you it is COLD!
The colors were amazing, the azure of the sky, the grey and white of the water, the coppery color of the rocks and this brilliant chartreuse of the moss. New colorway perhaps?
Back at Ninebark Farm, i strolled around the gardens. I had been wondering what the delightful scent was and soon found out it was sweet peas. Whooooboy! Bottle that scent up and send it to all war torn countries. It'll put a happy face on everyone and we will all get along. War heads, stealth bombers, missile launchers....wrong. Sweet peas...right.
Can't you just smell them?!
I picked a bouquet and brought them all the way through Idaho to Montana. They looked pretty sorry by Montana though.
And the crocosmia...brilliant! It grows into massive clumps of crimson, so bright and cheerful.
After traveling through Sisters, Oregon and up over the next pass, our little Honda (filled with too much yarn) overheated and we had to pull over. Luckily it was in a National Forest campground but unluckily the campground didn't have water. But the nice camp hosts offered us a couple gallons so we could fill the radiator and make ourselves coffee.
We made our way to our friends over in Idaho, Karen and Bill, more Ultimate Frisbee buddies. We hadn't been to their ranch and I was looking forward to seeing it.
Bill has his own construction company and has built everything on the property.
A beautiful, passive solar home...
...a barn with attached greenhouse and an apartment for guests above the barn.
Rustic antiques and split wood for the fireplace greeted us at the entryway.
Karen is a landscape architect and has designed and built (with the help of Bill) a fantastic garden.
They built a fence around what will be the orchard, to keep deer out.
The fruit trees, waiting to be planted.
We partied into the wee hours and Bill coaxed us out into the night to take a 3-mile walk with only the Milky Way to guide us. One forgets how dark it is in the west and how clear the skies are. We could see every constellation and the Milky Way was creamy white, spilling across the sky.
But Bill and Karen don't live on the ranch full time. The next valley over, Sun Valley, you may have heard of it!, offers more in the way of making a living than the quiet valley in Camas County. They live and work in Ketchum and make it out to the ranch a number of times a month.
Karen's architect firm, Native Landscapes and has recently moved into new digs. The entryway is stunning, with real (recently cut) aspens.
Housed on the third floor of an art gallery, the halls are enhanced with huge paintings by western artist.
Clients can sit here and view their projects on...
the flat screen tv built into the bamboo wall that Karen constructed.
I was a bit pouty leaving Ketchum. I didn't get to see enough of our friends and Ketchum is a lovely town with galleries, boutiques and great restaurants. Plus it offers awesome mountain biking, a bike path to a rustic lodge, rafting and hiking. We could have stayed days and we begged to come back for a week next year. They said, "You bet!" so we'll be back for sure.
This sculpture was built last year right downtown out of willow branches. It's about 12' tall and quite spectacular.
And then we were off over the pass, through the woods, and back to Missoula for a backpacking adventure. Ahhh! The wild, wild West!