Monday, March 22, 2010

Escape to the Beach!

Buddy and I decided it was time to get out of Portland, so into my truck we jumped and up Highway 30 we went! The plan was to head south from Astoria and stop at every beach sign we saw until the sun set.

In Astoria we hit traffic heading south, getting out to stretch our legs and take a bathroom break and check out the sea lions in hopes that the traffic jam would break didn't, so we changed plans and headed north!

"Long Beach!" I said. "Woof!" said Buddy. I figured pretty much that meant lets go! And so we did. We hit Long Beach and drove on the sand till we couldn't see anyone and set up "camp." First we played fetch, then went for a wade in the waves.

I sat and read "Emma" for a bit then broke out the bread and cheese (and cheese burger dog bites of course.)

As the sun went down we watched a dad and his kiddos fly a kite to our left and an old couple set up a campfire to my right.

The moon rose behind us the sun set before us and we went for a run down the beach in the dark. It was absolutely fantabulous and exactly what both of us were looking for!
Then we tried to drive home...that was a mess. I decided to follow my Garmin home and anyone who drives in the dark following a Garmin deserves to get taken for a ride! The normal two hour drive up 30 or 26 turned into a 3 hour back road tour of the turny topsy turvey logging roads complete with gravel and potholes with glimpses of Orion and a sliver of the moon to guide our way.

Finally arriving home we both fell into bed exhausted and perfectly happy with our day.

Monday, March 15, 2010

My First Royalties Check!!!

Okay, how exciting is that! I think I'm going to go cash it now that I've played around with it for a while...hehehe...most fun $10.79 I ever made...oh simple pleasures!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Changing Seasons

Life has many seasons, some of them earth bound others in personal growth, even others socially, economically, romantically, etc. When too many seasons change at once, one tends to look back on their life either in awe or curiosity wondering what caused so many changes all at once. I know there is no answer to this as I look at several new seasons. Weather wise, spring came early this year. First week of February I saw my first flowering tree! This was shocking to me. I know nature follows its own internal clock and tells us whats coming next but, I thought someone should tell this little tree that its a bit to early to be showing off it's beautiful buds. I was right, we had some beautiful weather broken up by rain storms, wind storms, even snow this week, yes this very first week of March! I keep turning the heat off and back on again. Spring is such a tease!

Economically, the stress of our nations situation is starting to show signs of serious strain on my field. Jobs are far and few between and the competition is fierce. Its becoming more than just tightening the belts to wait it out. It becomes a way of life as the dry season is looking more like the seven year drought. There are lots of conversations around this subject and it is interesting to hear what different people have to say about it and how they are dealing with it. Some are traveling, which sounds like the wrong way to go when money is scarce, but if one has no bills and a little bit of cash saved up, a little goes a lot farther in some countries around the world compared to here. Others are scraping by on one income rather than two, lucky dogs. Some are parking cars and using bikes and transit faithfully, even others have lost everything and are couch surfing among friends and family. For me, I got a roommate. Hopefully this will be enough help to stave off any more moves in my near future.

Socially, I have found a few girlfriends who's schedules actually match mine. We have been enjoying "Happy hour Wednesdays" and "Soaking at the Kennedy School Saline pool" on Thursdays. Once a month we have been going dancing at Holocene or taking adventurous outings such as OMSI after Dark and trips to Seattle. This season has filled me with hope that a season of new friendship has arrived, a new wave of female companionship has started to partially fill the void left by friends and sisters far away as well as a significant other now gone from my life. That hole has also opened up a new season called "dating." The freedom to accept the offer of a dance, or drink, or phone number. This season is full of excitement, disappointment, anticipation, surprises, ups and downs. Gone is the days of unspoken understandings or givens, or knowns. Everything is new, history is a mystery, the future unknown. Sometimes I think, I'm too old for this. Other times it makes me feel young. Mostly it makes me feel lost. Humans are creatures of habit, change is not something they do well, no matter how much they profess being efficient at it. I, for for one do not claim this. I understand that I am at fault when I do not accept change with grace. My patience is nil when it comes to a new learning curve which doesn't make meeting people very easy at all. So starts the calamity of dates, one after another. I give them all nicknames since a lot of them have duplicate names and the names are not important really until one of them fits with mine. This may be a mistake but it is how I've decided to keep things interesting and light.

Another season, comes with me personally. (as if the last season wasn't personal enough!) It has to do with becoming a published author. To Google my name now comes up with all kinds of interesting stuff! Honestly, I used to Google my name to see what my alter ego was up to. I have been a dancer, photographer, singer, lived in Britain, New York and Japan. Now, the real me can be found on and an Artists website, a blog and Facebook...I used to be so obscure! People are already selling used copies of my book on Ebay and it only came out two months ago today!!! I have bumbled through 3 book signings and as much as I don't care for selling myself (mostly cause its all so unexpected and new) I am learning the ropes slowly...probably more slowly than my marketer would like but I'm still working on it. The fun part of it all is sharing my amazing Granddad with people all over the world, and yes my book has been purchased all the way over in England! And bragging on my Aunt's amazing water colors. Another fun part is hearing peoples' stories about their own grandfathers and all the sweet memories that are resurfaced by the book. The not so fun part is remembering how to spell my name when signing copies and counting correct change after hearing such touching stories or watching someone wipe their eyes after reading through it. Through all these changing seasons, three things remain the same: I am still Jen, I still love my job and I am still a crazy Alaskan girl looking for the next Adventure.

Ciao Bella!