Sunday, October 3, 2010

A Birthday and a Busy Weekend

Friday was Gregg's birthday. Double-nickel, as his (older) brother called it - Happy 55th Birthday, Gregg!
We went out to dinner at one of his favorite local pubs (The Harbour House on Bainbridge Island) to celebrate. It was yummy.

On Saturday, we went for one of our favorite walks. After we came home, we did yardwork: Gregg mowed the lawn, and I cut down blackberry canes & vines. For those of you who don't have wild blackberries growing around you, I will try to describe ours. I believe that, if we left our property alone, it would be covered in blackberries (and dandelions) in no time at all. They grow in feet, not inches, each year. They are like barbed wire. The canes can be nearly an inch in diameter; the vines can be so tiny that they are hard to see. The thorns are terribly sharp, and can pierce clothing - and arteries. Ask my mom about blackberry-picking when wearing SHORTS - she will never do that again!

I had a very satisfying time cutting canes and pulling the vines out of our plants. I got scratched, I got a little bit bloody, I got blackberry juice on my clothes, but I had a GOOD time, and could see the results of my work. I felt that I WON. If you have any anger issues, I recommend a good pair of leather gloves, good sharp pruning shears and some blackberry vines.
After that, I got cleaned up, baked a berry cobbler, and set out appetizers for my parents, brother & sister-in-law. We were gathering at our house before going to Burrata Bistro for dinner to celebrate Gregg's (and Jim's, belated) birthday.
Caroline & Jim at Burrata Bistro
Dinner was delicious, and the best part, for me, came when Jim (who is a foodie) tasted Kim's Mocha Creme Caramel for the first time. I wish I had captured it on film. It was priceless - he said, This dessert is OUT OF CONTROL!, and ate most of it himself.
Today, Gregg and I went for a trip up to Fort Flagler, one of three World War I-era forts in our area that have been turned into beautiful state parks (the other two are Fort Worden and Fort Casey).
We walked around the old barracks, the bluff and the beaches. Jason, I wish you had been with us today!
 Um, no problem...I have no intention of going in...
...but there was a goat, geese & ducks in there.
Gregg on the bluff.
There was so much driftwood on the beach that we could walk just on the logs...a favorite game that we used to play with our kids.
The park has gun emplacements, and this gun fascinated me.
This is the park where Katie stayed for her 4th grade Environmental Camp experience with her class.
It's rustic, but very beautiful. Picturing her here made me miss her. 
As we were returning to our car, we saw four deer, grazing and eating fruit that had fallen from trees. Three were together...
...and one of them was under a fruit tree by himself. He let us get very close. It was a thrill!
On the way home, we delivered a box and bag of fabric and blanket binding to Lucile & Noble, and they gave us 16 new quilts for the Guild in return. Thank you, Lucile & Noble!


ChiTown Girl said...

Happy Birthday, Gregg! Glad you guys had such a great celebration.

Mary said...

What a beautiful weekend you had! I love the joy in your writing...and all the great quilt news too.

Mary Potts said...

Happy Birthday to that handsome husband of yours! You live in an area with so much natural beauty. Thanks for sharing all the photos. I feel like I'm walking with you without being a third wheel!

deb said...

there is something magical about coming upon deer.

glad you had such a fulfilling weekend.

Busy Bee Suz said...

What a great weekend for you both!
Happy birthday, 55? I hardly think so!!!!

Karen, apparently those blackberry vines had it coming...who knew you had it in you???? ;)

Robin said...

No wonder you haven't been around! You live in the most gorgeous place ~ happy birthday to Gregg!

Allegra Smith said...

Happy Birthday Gregg! When you two come to Portland we will have our own celebration and open a bottle of our "reserved for special friends" to toast to the next fifty five.

Karen dear, bon chance with the blackberries, they are the worse plagues in the NW and it kills valuable riparian areas that we need for the survival of our wildlife. Hugs from here.

Jabacue said...

What a great weekend you guys had! A little bit of everything. Loved the beach with all the driftwood.

AnnDeO said...

What a glorious weekend.

Elizabeth said...

Happy Birthday to your handsome Greg! I love these snapshots of your life -- your trips and travels and memories. I'm also so impressed by these people that make so many quilts! Wow!

Dawn ~ BJSMomma said...

Happy Birthday Gregg ~ (Karen's Husband, David & Katie's Dad).

Sounds like a wonderful time. I am glad that you all got to enjoy the walks, work, food, family & FUN!