West Coast Weekend -- Huntsville, Alabama Photographer

I went out to the West coast a couple weeks ago, to Washington and Oregon to spend some time with friends and get a little photography done.  It was fun, to say the least.  I think I found a part of myself that had been lying dormant for years, just waiting for an excuse to come out and groove to her sweet-soul groove.  I listened to loud music with friends on a drive down the coastline of Oregon, drank a pint of Guinness in a pub, ate (mass quantities of) delicious food, found commonality and grace with fellow Believers, and generally allowed that slow, West coast vibe to bathe me over in its warm, honey-gold tones and salt air.  It was a much needed reprieve from my regular daily grind, allowing me to breathe and return home refreshed and restored to a more solid self, a grounded self, an assured self. SouthWest Selfie

Mt. Hood, proud sentinel over the Columbia River, Portland Oregon, and Vancouver Washington

Mt. Hood Washington Oregon


Portland is indeed weird.  Wonderfully and deliciously weird -- and I love it!


Possibly my most favorite place in Portland (maybe in the world), is Powell's World of Books.   It is one serious bookstore -- and I adore books.  I spent nearly two hours (not long enough) trolling the shelves, reading spines, watching people, smelling the age of the place, room after room, a whole square block of goodness times three floors and a basement!  There was even a moment, on the upper floor, where I found myself fully immersed in the place, feeling the magnitude of the space, the building full of people, full of words and photographs, in thousands of books representing thousands of minds and lives, the decades of thoughts and ideas and passions. It was reverent, almost . . . holy.

Powell's Bookstore, Portland OR

One of my favorite spots in Powell's is the shelves and shelves if  Jane Austen goodness.

How to Create the Perfect Wife

Harry Potter

Powell's Bookstore, Portland OR


Much of my time was spent with my girlfriends, Lisa and Christina.  We drank mass quantities of Starbucks, ate crazy good food (if you're ever in the area, do eat at Moe's on Cannon Beach), and generally had more fun than a barrel of monkeys.

A cuppa clam chowder from Moe's, Cannon Beach, OR.  I won't lie:  I had two cups.  Worth every calorie.

Christina's "good coffee!" face.

Haystack Rock on Cannon Beach, OR -- also known as "Goonies Rock"

smiling beauty

That's me there, flanked by two of the most spectacular redheads in the world.

Cannon Beach, OR

Cannon Beach beauty

After visiting awhile with Goonies Rock on Cannon Beach, we headed over to Astoria, home of The Goondocks.  I admit it, I'm a total Goonie geek.  Goonies never say die!

The Goondocks

The Goondocks

The Goondocks

stunning view of the river from the Goondocks


One last stop before a last night's sleep and boarding a plane for home: Voodoo Donuts!  You simply cannot visit Portland without a donut pit stop.  Tip:  the Portland airport will indeed allow you to carry on a big pink box of Voodoo;  just be prepared for the envious stares and covetous comments by everyone you encounter between the airport and home.

sign at the historic (and delicious!) Voodoo Donuts, downtown Portland, OR

That's right folks: an entire box of nasty goodness.  Check out the maple bacon bars, the only thing my husband asked (begged) me to bring home from my trip.

I can't wait to return to the West coast.  I miss it terribly already.  *sigh*