American Sunday Drivers

Elisabeth and I have a new tradition where we live out the dreams of true, American Sunday Drivers. Our tradition began just last week, with a trip out to Cannon Beach on the Oregon Coast. In typical Oregon fashion, the weather prediction called for a mix of sunshine and torrential downpour. We got lucky and hit the sunny windows, snapping some lovely photos down on the beach at Hug Point and Ecola State Park.


This week we wanted to get back out for some more Sunday driving, and so after Elisabeth saw her mom off (she was visiting from Eugene) we met me at my house and set off for Seaside.

Fog blanketed all of Portland, encasing us in a thick cloud soup as we made our way out of town. The further away we got, the more sun we saw peaking out from under the shrouds. About half-way out to Seaside Elisabeth spotted a valley still partially encased in fog. It was moving up the hillside, slowly burning off as the noon sun beat down on it. We quickly opted to make a U-turn and found the perfect pull-out to capture a snapshot. The trees were only just visible through the low cloud which made it an amazing place for a few photos.


After we left the valley view point, the fog had almost completely burned off. Lucky for us, it was clear driving all the way to Seaside. We rolled into town, hungry and anxious to get another good collection of coastal photos. What Elisabeth and I quickly realized, however, is that Seaside is not the town we thought it was. Neither one of us was familiar with the area, and we were shocked by the amount of beachside-tourist traps and Elephant Ear shops. Neither one of us particularly wanted to stick around and hunt for a parking spot, so we turned around and (our second good turn-around choice of the day) and pointed the car south to Cannon Beach.

Driving into Cannon was quiet. It was calm, and sunny and there were no store fronts that boasted, “ARCADE INSIDE!!!” Cannon is still a coastal tourist town, but it’s about as touristy as I can ever happily handle. We were glad to have booked it out of Seaside. They can keep their swing-sets-on-the-beaches and leave me with the plain-old “sand and salt water” coast.

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Elisabeth and I Get Ready for the Coast

Today, my friend Elisabeth and I are going to Hug Point State Park in order to snap some stormy beach photos. It’s gonna be a little bit rough, and I’m sure it’s going to get wild, but we’re stocking up on some coffee before we set out so I think we’re going to be fine.

I looked at my favorite weather resource site, and it told me we had 90% chance of rain around noon and 100% chance of rain until sundown. Then I went to, and they told me it was merely a “23% chance of rain”

I hate to betray my favorites, but I’m hoping comes out on top today.

Elisabeth and I have traveled together before, on a road trip from SLC to Portland, via San Francisco. Apart from the fact I ended up driving the entire time (She didn’t learn how to drive stick before she joined me in SLC…) the trip together was really fun. We stopped at the Great Salt Lake (which was flooded at the time), visited the highest point in SF, gazed at the Golden Gate Bridge and camped out in the Red Woods for a night. We also met a really funny old hippy that sold dried salmon on the side of the road and told us jokes about “Shit hooks.”

I’m looking forward to getting out of town. I’ve been struggling lately with money and so been staying really close to home in an effort not to spend it. A photography day-trip to the coast, however, sounds like an inexpensive and wonderful getaway.

Happy Sunday ❤

Happy New Year!- 2015

“But just because I’ll forget it some tomorrow doesn’t mean that I didn’t live every second of it today.”- Still Alice, by Lisa Genova.

I write to remember.

And, amazingly, it seems I write to live, too- the habit and skill I’ve honed because I’m afraid to lose my past is going to help me secure a future.

2015 is shaping up to be a great year. I’m kicking it off with a month-long sabbatical from alcohol, a positive outlook and the determination to do exactly what I want, whatever that may be. In the recent months, I’ve been building myself up again from the jumbled pile of pieces that were left after two years of chaos and one major life-altering event. I like me. I’ve always liked me, but I didn’t always have the confidence to be me all the time. But I’ve never stopped wanting to know how to put my pieces in the right places, and they feel like they’ve really come together. I’m not done rearranging, and I never will be. I like to learn too much. But I have formed a storm-proof foundation, one that can have anything built on top of it and withstand the regular buffets from my sometimes stormy life.

“I imagine each of my friends as a beautifully hammered and tempered metal- each dent identifying another hardship they’ve come up against and overcome, culminating in an exquisitely textured persona.”- Jenna Kuklinski

A diamond won’t be brilliant if it isn’t cut.