Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A Large Responsibility

Walla Walla U. is a Christian campus. It is affiliated with the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and a lot of incredible people have been educated on this very campus. The university has been in operation since 1892, when it was still REALLY out in the middle of nowhere, miles from the nearest house or shop. It has grown a lot since then - from one building to over a dozen main buildings (not counting additional structures on the campus); from under 100 students to over 1800. Originally Walla Walla College (hence the town name, College Place), the school achieved university status in 2007. The above photo is of the school's engineering building, Chan Shun Pavilion. The verse on the wall is from Proverbs, and one Christians all over the world can identify with - a responsibility given us to look out for our planet and protect it from harm.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Golds and Greens

After many years of lacking in this particular area, Walla Walla finally got an Italian restaurant. The Italian Bistro opened on Isaacs Street just a few months ago, and I hope it sticks around for years to come. They took over a closing country-style restaurant called the Homestead and redecorated (thank goodness!). The now-schnazzy dining area features brand new booths, ambiant music, and clearly Italian-themed artwork. Case in point: the above photo. It hangs in the entryway of the new restaurant. And though I'm not a wine-drinker nor am I an artist, I did pause to appreciate the blended golds and greens in this nicely-done painting.

Monday, April 27, 2009


One of my favourite places to eat in the valley is Rogers Bakery and Cafe on College Avenue in College Place. It's also known as the Cookie Tree, and there is a second one in Walla Walla, but the CP location is my favourite. One of my favourite things about it is that every meal that comes with meat can be made vegetarian - using soy products instead of flesh, so you still get the protein without going carnivore. (Don't get me wrong, I don't have anything against meat-eaters, it's just not for me.) This salad is not only huge and colourful, but it is also absolutely delicious. On top of the lettuce and cabbage is: black beans, corn, olives, red bell peppers, green bell peppers, onions, carrots, and, if you want it (which I don't) chilies, and finally, strips of grilled seasoned vegetarian chicken. Top all of that off with a homemade creamy pesto dressing and you've got yourself a filling and spectacular lunch you won't soon forget.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Keeping a Promise

Earlier this spring I promised to follow the blossoming flowers as they appeared throughout the length of the season. There is an order to what blooms when, and I hadn't noticed it until I lived close enough to work to start walking every day. I missed the crocuses this year, but the daffodils I got. They are almost all dead now, and the tulips are headed that direction, too. Next is the lilacs. Our neighbour's bush is just about fully bloomed, and it's beautiful. I'll keep an eye out for a good shot of some lilacs. These tulips are in front of a church, and when I saw them this evening I couldn't pass up the opportunity...there aren't many left to capture tulips this season. I love that there's a hint of orange on the tips of the petals.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

More Spring Foliage

I saw this carpet of tiny purple flowers as my husband and I were walking our dog through Yantis Park in Milton-Freewater. It's a rather small park, and there were LOTS of other people there with their dogs, so it certainly wasn't quiet. But this little corner was virtually unbothered, and I couldn't pass these little guys up without a photo. I don't know what they are - they'd probably barely fit on the tip of your pinky finger, and they are a ground-cover. Perhaps they are an immature myrtle? Anyone know?

Monday, April 20, 2009

The GC

This could mean a number of things, and you're welcome to your guesses. But to ease your curiosity, I'll tell you: It stands for "Golf Course." Though not as classy as some around the world in places such as Hawai'i, it's a nice little oasis in the middle of an otherwise rather brown summer landscape. Though it is still spring, so the course doesn't stand out as much as it will in a couple of months. To the left of the bench is the entrance where golfers of all ages can be seen pulling their caddies up the sidewalk. Just before that, to the left, is the clubhouse (is that what it's called in golf?).

Sunday, April 19, 2009

MF Frogs 5

A weekend of frogs! This is another in the Milton-Freewater Frogs series. This one is again on a back road in old town Freewater, but it's one of my favourites. He looks so happy and ready to serve anyone who stops by in need of car help. And yes, that's an actual tire (or tyre if you're from Britain) in his hands. The sign above him still appears to bear damage from the winter wind storm we had on January 4, 2008. Several places around Milton-Freewater have taken a long time replacing their signs and property damage. I'm not sure why. But I'm fairly certain this shop is still operating.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

MF Frogs 4

Another Milton-Freewater frog today! This one sits on Main Street (which isn't as "main" as you might think) in front of a sewing shop called "Stitch Nitch." This elderly frog is repairing an old American flag. How patriotic of her! This Main Street is particularly quiet because it is the Old Town Freewater Main Street. Whereas it used to be the happenin' place through the town of Freewater, it is now simply another side street, as the highway, just a couple of blocks away, takes travelers right past this old downtown without even knowing it's there. True, a sign marks "this way to Old Town Freewater," but what does that mean? I've lived in this valley for 7 1/2 years and I'm not sure even I know. Any old-timers have area history to share?

Friday, April 17, 2009


This fencepost apparently once kept something out...or in...or both. But over the years it has fallen into disrepair and is now a sad, lonely testament to the efforts of an unknown farmer to keep his fields safe. This is on a hillside overlooking Milton-Freewater. Since it's Skywatch Friday, we'll make note of the fluffy-looking clouds just visible in the blue part of the sky. I think springtime clouds are some of the coolest of the year.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Springtime View

From the same hill as yesterday's post, this is a view out over springtime Milton-Freewater. In the distance you can see the Blue Mountains, with some snow still on the higher parts. There is probably still a couple feet of snow at the summit. In the foothills you can see a grain elevator and the green fields, just starting the work they'll continue all summer until harvest. The foreground is a residential area of the small town, and the grass at the entrance to Yantis Park, where this photo was shot.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Small Crowd

Along with the warmer weather comes a new batch of sports. We put to rest the basketball and football and focus more on soccer and baseball. This women's softball game was going on last weekend near Yantis Park in Milton-Freewater. The infield team wasn't doing so well - their pitcher walked 3 batters in a row. I don't know what the final score was, but it was interesting to watch from the hillside for a while.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

That Time of Year

I hate bees. I hate anything that resembles them, too: wasps, hornets, yellow-jackets, and those flies that look like bees as a defense mechanism. So although spring brings with it beautiful flowers, warm breezes, and opportunities to enjoy a "cuppa" on the outdoor patio, I still find part of myself loathing the coming of warmer months. Over the weekend I noticed a growing number of these buzzing insects excitedly perusing our front yard trees. The fuzzy bits on the branches were evidently attracting them, and they were giving in to the call. Once they loaded up with pollen, though, they had a hard time flying. They were dive-bombing our porch railing, scaring the heck out of me as they did so. I was trying to enjoy a brownie with my husband, but drunken bees kind of put a stop to that! I did finally manage to get up enough nerve to snap a couple of pictures of the pollen-laden insects. Here is one, who was trying to clean himself, but was so overwhelmed with the pollen (the orange bits on his legs) that he kept falling over. A larger view of this image reveals stunning details on the bee, and I really enjoyed examining the photo...from the safety of my dining room.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


A friend of mine is studying acupuncture at a relatively small school near Seattle, Wash. Last week he came to town for a visit during his spring break, and we had a get-together with several friends in order to enjoy the short time we had with him and his fiancee. During the evening, a couple in the group decided they'd like to experience acupuncture. And, welcoming the practice and the chance to show off what he has learned, my friend agreed. One was given acupuncture in his arm, leg, and head to stave off the headache he felt coming on. Another, shown here, was given a point in her forehead in an effort to help her relax before bed. It was fascinating to watch, and I think both attempts worked exactly as they were supposed to. Well done, I say!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

April Fools

I've been out of town and didn't have a chance to schedule postings, so I apologize for the tardiness of this post. It was supposed to go up April 1, for April Fools Day (or so it's called in the United States - what is it called where you live?). This poor quality photo was snapped through my car window when I noticed spur-of-the-moment that some humourous person (student?) had placed an umlaut on the Walla Walla U. sign. I found it didn't harm anything, and it was pretty clever. Happy April Fools!