Friday, June 19, 2009

Camping + New Job = Best Week Ever!

What a wonderful week this has been! David got his cast off on Monday, and we left the doctor's office and went straight over the pass to go camping. After pondering where to go, we decided upon Owhi Campgrounds on Cooper Lake. You have to pass through Roslyn, an old mining town, and then drive a ways along Cle Elum Lake. Finally we reached the campgrounds where we packed all of our gear on our backs and hiked down to the lake. It was beautiful! We were especially excited to try out our new tent that we bought off of Steep
& Cheap - only the greatest source ever for outdoor gear.

Owhi Campgrounds

It's a pretty great little tent. After we set up camp, we started the fire. David and I have both been into "Out of the Wild" on the discovery show, so we decided to try out some new backcountry techniques. David bought a magnesium flint with us to see how it worked. It's a little tricky (at least for me) but he had it down by the end of the trip.

We made some chili for dinner and enjoyed a peaceful evening in the woods. The next morning we woke up to a beautiful sunrise, and almost dream-like lighting coming through the trees. Photos had to be taken, it was gorgeous!

We picked out a trail on the map of the area and started an attempt to hike to Pete Lake. Unfortunately, this was a failed attempt. We hiked on a trail right along Cooper Lake. It was a beautiful trail, and we even found some hidden campsites to save for a future date. The problem was that the entire trail was loaded with fallen trees, overgrown brush, and tricky navigation where sometimes the trail wasn't visible. It was pretty frustrating. After we reached the end of Cooper Lake, the trail was no longer visible so we had to turn back. It was sad, but at least we were able to help clean out the trail by chopping down twigs and branches that were in the way for future travelers.

Despite the fact that we didn't make it to our destination, the hike along Cooper Lake was beautiful. Large sweeping views of mountains towering above the lake, reflecting onto the perfectly still surface of the water.

David on the hike.

We returned to camp and decided to play catch and relax for the rest of the evening. I noticed this plant near our campsite with the sun shining through the leaves and took a few shots of it.

We relaxed the rest of the evening and proceeded to make a massive fire that was fueled mostly by pine cones. We had people camping relatively close to our site, and it seemed as if we were having a competition to make the biggest fire. Unfortunately I didn't get a shot of the final product, but I did get the glowing embers.

That night, we heard some bottle rustling around while we were in the tent. I don't think I can imagine anything more terrifying while camping than knowing that there is something lurking right outside your tent. From the sound of the animal, I concluded that it must have been a deer, but it was pitch black outside, and I was half asleep, so I can only imagine the worst at the time. It made me start thinking about what we would do if there was actually a bear outside. We don't have any form of self defense for an animal like that. I've read up on some tips in Backpacking magazine and I think next time we can have a better set up of where items are placed within our campsite. The next morning we were sad to leave, but we were ready to take a shower. I had to be back in Seattle for a working interview, the final interview of the hiring process at Teatro Zinzanni.

For those who don't know, I've been working as a cocktail waitress at the Red Door in Fremont for two years. While I love the staff and all of the cocktail knowledge I've gained, I can honestly say that I'm over it. I don't want to serve frat boys anymore, I don't want to clean up piss or puke, and I don't want to deal with drunk college kids who won't even tip a dollar on a 10 dollar drink. Lame. The good news is, after an amazing night of watching cirque and acrobatics and trapeze while shadowing a cocktail waitress, I got a job offer and gratefully accepted! I can't wait to start there. I can't wait to see the new show, and I can't wait to wear a costume, fishnet stockings and feathers in my hair at work! It's a beautiful place for a date, an anniversary, a birthday, any celebration, and I'm so excited to start a new page of my work experience. I will miss my friends at the Red Door, but I always know that I am welcome there.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Days at the Beach

So let me just say that the weather has been absolutely gorgeous up here in Seattle. I have truly spent the last couple of days enjoying it too! David and I decided to go to Golden Gardens on Tuesday. Neither of us had any plans so it was a really nice relaxing day. Of course I brought my camera and took some shots of some items that truly mean summer to me. I hear that Seattle has the highest rate of sunglass sales. It's probably because we only wear them about three months out of the year and they get lost.

What could illustrate summer more than baseball? Mariners anyone?

Golden Gardens

I'm excited to be getting tan!


After having so much fun on Tuesday, we decided it would be a good idea to come back on Wednesday and have a BBQ. After sitting through a terrible amount of traffic, we got settled next to a fire pit and started cooking. We got out there around 4 so we could eat, play, and enjoy the sunset right before we left. (The sun sets around 9 in Seattle!) If I hadn't mentioned it already, David used to be a cheerleader at University of Washington. That is actually how we met! Baton twirler falls for cheerleader hehe. These next few photos are ones I took of two of the UW cheeleaders. David A is on the left, and Brandon is on the right. I took them right before the sun was going down, and I think they're beautiful!! I wish I could do a back tuck like that. Unfortunately, I never really excelled in the tumbling department. Regardless, I'm pretty happy with these shots.

Tumbling in the Sunset.

I think I'm going to leave you all with one last photo. I really didn't even feel like I was in Seattle yesterday. My family and I do BBQ's on the beach when we go to San Diego, and this whole day felt just like that. I'm so happy that I've found a place to spend my summer nights watching the sunsets.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Summer is Here!

Sunshine, 90 degrees, blue I living in Arizona again? The weather in Seattle has been ideal for summertime fun. I have spent the past couple of weeks juggling shifts at work and trying to find some free time to go on bike rides and work on my tan. (After all, I am going to Florida soon, and I don't want to look like I've been living in a cave!) After working 10 out of 11 days between jobs, I finally had the last two days off. I was pretty excited on Monday because I received my new lens in the mail. (Or should I say: Le Lundi, j'ai reçu mon nuvel objectif dans le mail. I'm always trying to think of how to translate my thoughts into Français.) It's a Canon 15mm fisheye lens. Not only will this lens give me some ridiculously wide angles, it will allow me to express my creativity. Since snowboarding photography is my goal, it's going to be a great addition to my bag of tricks. On to the results.

The first photo is one I took of David when we were just messing around with the lens to see what it could do right out of the package. After a little tweaking in CS3, it looks pretty sweet.

I decided to go on a bike ride to Golden Gardens, and took a few shots when I got there. I was really amazed at how wide this thing goes. Even on a cropped sensor, I'm getting some really great images.

Arguably the best beach near Seattle

My bike

I love the last one out of that set. I'm realizing that the more I work with black and white, the more I love it. It has a classic look that really appeals to me.

Yesterday, we decided to take advantage of one of the hottest days so far this year and head over to the arboretum park at University of Washington. There is a part of the 520 bridge that is disconnected, and on any given summer day you can find several college kids hanging out in canoes and hucking themselves off of the 40 foot bridge. David and I headed out to the park to work on our tans. We didn't have any intention of jumping the bridge (David has a cast on his leg) but it was entertaining to watch the kids egging each other on - some attempting back-flips, resulting in back-flops. David's brother Daniel headed out, and I got a some pretty cool shots of him jumping.

Daniel taking a leap of faith

David, with Daniel in the distance walking to the jumping point