Finally after more than a year of searching I have found the ideal place for me to live. Yesterday, I contracted to rent a cozy cottage that is twenty-two miles from the Oregon coast. It also has the added attraction of the Siuslaw river flowing past the property through this mountainous valley before entering the ocean at Florence, Oregon. I was discriminating and patient enough to find just the right area which was a reminder to me that all good things take time. Although I have to admit that at times it was very exasperating. It is out in the boonies yet there are folks nearby. I have a lot of work ahead of me with the moving and all. I will not be blogging for a few weeks. Will tell you more about the area and cottage when I return. Happy trails to everyone.
Grange halls have existed in rural areas of our nation since the mid-1800s. Their growth was attributed to community activities associated with farmland living -- serving as a meeting house of sorts for country folks. It was a time of real family farms not corporate farms,
They played a large role in our historic agricultural community. However the grange buildings have been slowly disappearing as land is being bought up for housing developments, malls, and commercial structures.
I always look for the old grange buildings that usually sit forlornly on our former rural lands. As family farms have been exiting these areas, now one might find a grange sitting next to many commercial buildings or new subdivisions -- deteriorating ever so slowly. So many have disappeared from our landscapes. At one time the above Fernwood Grange was among six granges in the Newberg area of Oregon. Today Fernwood Grange is the last remaining of the original six -- the result of city encroachment.
Grange buildings are dying off as our culture changes.
For more info on granges across the nation click here
Trees are ever present as one rides around Oregon. To me it is what makes part of Oregon absolutely beautiful. It's winter here right now and because of the huge majority of conifers there is always the presence of greenery in the landscape.
I like to ride around the neighborhoods that are on the fringes of Portland. Once they were their own little villages until incorporated by the large city of Portland. One neighborhood is Multnomah Village.
Multnomah Village is a charming village with an active small downtown and a long established neighborhood that surround the old commercial area filled with several small businesses such as a book store, a bike repair and a couple coffee houses.
To give one an example of the charm of the neighborhood snuggled within the village perimeter I took this street view of conifer trees that were used as street trees. Street trees being those that line the streets.
Being raised as a Midwesterner I was used to large deciduous trees lining neighbor streets. Trees such as oak, elms, and maples that provided lush leaves in the summer and fall yet no lush leaves could be found in the winter.
Here in the Pacific Northwest one finds very tall trees that provide a greenscape all year round. Take a look at the photo above that I shot to understand what I am talking about.
I am not saying that the Pacific Northwest is the best as I believe there is good in all types of environmental regions. Like humans of different ethnic makeups -- trees are much the same -- providing different yet beautiful landscapes in their own way.
A few quotes for 2015. Saw the above rock balanced on top of larger rocks at a local park here in Portland. It gave me food for thought about seeking balance in my life for 2015. Looked up some quotes that relate to balance. I am sharing them below -- hope some of them resonant with you -----
Don't confuse symmetry with balance.
~ ~ Tom Robbins
My point is, life is about balance. The good and the bad. The highs and the lows. The pina and the colada.
~ ~ Ellen DeGeneres
In art and dream may you proceed with abandon. In life may you proceed with balance and stealth.
~ ~ Patti Smith
I want to caution you against the idea that balance has to be a routine that looks the same week in and week out.
~ ~ Kevin Thoman
Evermore in the world is this marvelous balance of beauty and disgust, magnificence and rats.
~ ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
If you are in doubt about what's balanced, look at the natural world.