Thursday, September 22, 2022

Heceta Headland Day Trip

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

So believe it or not, this was our family's first excursion out into the world since before Covid. James and I, together with our son Tayo and his girlfriend Ellie, took a whirlwind day trip to the Oregon Coast and it definitely revived our spirits and gave us hope for future travels.

The lighthouse at Heceta Headland is a well known sight to most Oregonians. It's a large part of the history of the area, having been built in 1894. It is situated 205 feet above the Pacific Ocean on a bluff carved out of the west side of the 1,000-foot-high headland.

Although we have visited the coast many times over the years, we have never taken the self guided tour of the lighthouse - until now. It's an easy half-mile hike on an uphill dirt trail and it was a perfectly beautiful and warm day. 'The kids' headed up on their own right away, while James and I took our time.

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

The 54-foot lighthouse tower contains a Fresnel lens that was built by the Chance Brothers of Birmingham, England and originally contained kerosene oil lamps which were maintained by a lightkeeper crew. These days the lamps are electric and automated. To this day it is still a working navigational light that is visible for 21 nautical miles.

After learning about and admiring the lighthouse, James and I then turned our attention to the stunning views. To the south is the sandbar at Cape Cove:

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

To the east you can see the sheltered Cape Cove Beach and the Cape Creek Bridge in the background:

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

As we descended back down the trail we stopped to view the Assistant Keeper's Duplex, one of the last remaining on the Pacific Coast. Originally there was also a Head Keeper's House, however it was demolished many years ago.

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

It was an enjoyable day of hiking, picnicking and sightseeing. At some point during the course of this day, however, it struck me how much we've missed over the last two and a half years. I've realized that I've allowed myself to get caught in the trap of thinking there's no use going anywhere anymore because everything has changed because of Covid.

And while certainly there have been changes in our perceptions and in how we navigate our day to day lives, it's also important to get out of our tightly held, cautious routines and enjoy nature and to see other families out there doing the same. And it also dawned on me how important it is to recommit to spending time with family seeing new things, exploring, and having that feeling of being free to wander and take things as they come, even if only for a day. It rejuvenates the spirit and helps us connect with each other in a wholly different way from our daily lives of work and worry.

For us, family trips have always been an important part of life and this day was an important reminder to continue that tradition, for ourselves and for the younger generation.

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Heceta Headland Day Trip

Have you taken any trips lately?

 

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Thursday, September 8, 2022

Her Majesty the Queen

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Her Majesty the Queen features works by Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa honoring Queen Elizabeth of England who passed away on September 8, 2022

Friends, I don't know anyone that can love Queen Elizabeth more uniquely than Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa.

Of course by now everyone the world over has learned that the beloved Queen of England passed away today. As I was reading the news and thinking about it this evening I thought I would revisit Danielle's Instagram page and then realized it would be fun to share some of her works to honor the Queen's passing.

The piece above, titled “yes, liz had a little nibble because 1, any good baker would do the same, and 2, ‘shut up, i’m the f’n queen’.” is just one example of Danielle's ability to bring a humorous and joyful approach to an otherwise very serious subject.

In “‘use the pom poms sparingly’ they said - unfortunately liz and her creative muse were already knee deep” (below) we see the queen getting carried away with pom poms and like in the first piece it's fun to imagine the queen in this kind of situation.

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Her Majesty the Queen features works by Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa honoring Queen Elizabeth of England who passed away on September 8, 2022
I have enjoyed Danielle's use of round canvases. This one called “in her daydreams, liz was an avon lady” I love all the various pink paint colors and how she used just a few images to get her point across:

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Her Majesty the Queen features works by Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa honoring Queen Elizabeth of England who passed away on September 8, 2022
Then there's this gem, entitled “arm’s length away” where Danielle informs us that "yes, that’s liz’s arm waving complete with swarovski crystal bracelet".

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Her Majesty the Queen features works by Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa honoring Queen Elizabeth of England who passed away on September 8, 2022
Danielle has also had fun utilizing vintage costume jewelry on some of her canvases. In “queens carry the weight of the world - and we make it look f’n easy” we see more of her humor shining a unique light on Her Majesty's complex role in society.

Under The Plum Blossom Tree, Her Majesty the Queen features works by Canadian collage artist Danielle Krysa honoring Queen Elizabeth of England who passed away on September 8, 2022
I hope you'll agree that Danielle's visual approach to celebrating the life of Queen Elizabeth has been a powerful way to honor the queen and so much of what she has represented in the world.

May Queen Elizabeth rest in peace.

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