A Quick Step in New Mexico

I live in a beautiful place. This, I know.

Sometimes, it’s nice to get out there an see other beautiful places- so when I had the opportunity to join my aunt for an outing to New Mexico for a quick there and back, I couldn’t say no.

We spend time in Albuquerque and Sante Fe and wished we had more time to explore more of the wilds in the area. Nevertheless, we spent as much time enjoying the New Mexican lifestyle as possible.

We visited the Petroglyph National Monument before heading up to Sante Fe.  It was a beautiful early winter weekend with plenty of sunshine. These PNW girls were in desperate need of some Vitamin D, albeit a crisp day.

The food was great, art game was strong, and I had to resist every urge to buy turquoise and leather everything. Next time, it is out to venture in the mountains and hot springs.

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Mt. Rainier- Sunrise and Beyond

I’ve gotten in this new habit of taking an afternoon off from the 9-5 to go adventure off in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. With so many destinations within a few hours’ drive, it seems wasteful not to.  It transforms a day from a morning of meetings to an afternoon of outdoor bliss.  This time, I took to the mountain with my favorite adventure and photography friend Mary Jo.    We decided on a simple hike to the Fremont Fire Lookout.  What was supposed to be a casual 5 mile hike, proved to be more difficult for us than expected. Lots of breaks for “photos” and conversation made the trip much easier.  Once we reached our destination, we celebrated with a libation and a lot of photo taking.  Back down was much easier, with many stops to take in the gorgeous Mountain Sunset and wildlife.  It may have been dark when we got back to the car, but we both agreed it was worth the adventure.

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Where the Water Falls

After several weeks of hard work with my day job, I needed to take a few days off to disconnect from the everyday and get some extra adventuring in.   I took to the Columbia River Gorge with my favorite companion and her2 year old (also my favorite) for a day of hiking.

We decided on Wahkeena Falls to get our PNW fix, knowing that half the vertical hike was paved.  This made it “easier” with a little one strapped to my dear friend’s back.  With several switchbacks and several goldfish crackers, we made it to Fairy Falls.  The water was pristine and the moss and ferns were the most beautiful shades of green.  All I could say the entire way up was, “This place is magic- and we live here”.   What could have been made into a large loop hike, we made our finale the falls and made our way back down the trail, since hiking with a little one can be tricky. A quick zip to the Eastwind Drive In for a bite and HUGE ice cream cones for all and we were feeling like the day was the perfect amount of adventure and friendship.

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Hattie- Class of 2015

This Senior Portrait Session was extra sentimental for me, since Hattie is like a little sister. You may recognize her from many photo sessions I have done with her family at Ritter Farms.  I remember her as a baby, as a sweet little girl, and have had a great getting to know her as the amazing young woman that she is. This girl is going places. When she graduates from Cle Elum-Roslyn High School she is off to study at the Evergreen State College– here in Olympia and the family could not be more excited for her.  She has been in 4H as a champion, an athlete, an amazing friend, and a gentle soul off to do more great things!

We took to Snoqualmie for this senior session- a good halfway point for both of us. The weather was perfect, we braved crowds, walked a thin line on a few laws, and enjoyed the afternoon together.  Wishing Hattie all the best in her adventures ahead!

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A sweet engagement

J & M have been high school sweethearts turned long lasting love.  I had the privilege to have taken their Senior Portraits in the past few years, and was thrilled to hear of their engagement.

We went to Tumwater Falls Park to take in the massive water show going on with several days of heavy rain.  They were such good sports to play after the rain and amidst the loud waterfall below.  Only the best to them for their wedding day and years together ahead.

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A love built for years

I’ve known these two love birds both separately and together for many years.  I have to say that I have been rooting for them for a solid 20 years now.  Being that I’m only 30, that’s really saying something. B & E have been lifelong friends from childhood.  We were band geeks, problem solving nerds, and athletes together through school.  When after so many years had passed after we all “grew up”, I got the sweet news that they were dating. I was ecstatic, as were most in our immediate circle and beyond.  B proposed this fall and I was lucky enough to spend some time with them in celebrating their engagement.  We went up to a favorite old spot up in the mountains back home and had a great time in the snow. It was such good luck to get (my favorite) snow and sun all in the same morning.  Can’t wait for the wedding next fall and wishing them the best in their future together.

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Simple Terrarium

It is a shiny new year here at share a bit of love!  I thought I would share a gift that I made for a gift exchange this year in case your new year’s resolution is to give a little more, make the world a greener place, or to spruce up your home or office.

I made this simple terrarium (two actually) for under $10 with some help from mother nature.Terrarium6

Here is what you will need:

  • Clear glass vessel
  • succulent plants
  • moss
  • potting soil
  • activated charcoal
  • gravel
  • rocks & sticks for added decoration

1. Start layering in this order: Gravel, charcoal, & potting soil.

2. Plant succulent in soil.

3. Pat in moss around to cover- You can skip this step, but it adds nice texture.  I managed to peel some moss from our front yard. (thanks Pacific Northwest!)

4. Add stones/sticks (I used drift wood from a girls weekend at the beach a few months back, and stones collected from a camping trip)

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