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September 29, 2008

Backyard chickens

I experienced the adventure of free-range chicken farming today. It was quite warm so I thought it'd be a good day to bring the chickens outside for the first time, let them run about, maybe start to identify them as individuals, not just as one of the three breeds I've got: Black Japanese (2), Silver Duckwing Old English (4), Golden Sebright (5). I'd like to know sooner rather than later which are roosters also. I even thought I might get Sam out on a leash for a little closer introduction if things were going smoothly. more...
See the photos...

Posted by Dave at 06:36 PM

Sunday mountain bike

Drew and I got out for a killer mountain bike ride yesterday out by the coast range. We had a couple of navigational issues but mainly stayed on track. Lots of elevation, lots of great trail. I have not gotten out for enough of these this summer; my first owning a mountain bike in a lot of years. Both dogs had a great run as well. There are a lot of off-road motorcycles in the area but they are on separate trails so you just end up hearing them which wasn't that bad. I found a new site to upload the GPS tracks to and it generated this cool summary of the trip.

Gales Creek Campground Loop

Widget powered by EveryTrail: GPS Geotagging

Posted by Dave at 11:57 AM

September 25, 2008

Sarah's sweater

While babysitting today Sarah asked me about my knitting which I'd brought over since she was supposed to be napping but turned out not to be very sleepy. She asked what I was making, who it was for, how to do it. I showed her a little and look forward to being able to teach her to knit as she gets older. Then I pulled out a sweater from her closet that I made for her almost a year ago. It was a little big back then but fits her great now. I'm glad she'll get to wear it at least a couple times before her next growth spurt. Maybe it will look good on Emily down the road. It's made of sturdy hemp that softens after each wash.

Posted by Dave at 05:34 PM

September 21, 2008

Swifts

This evening I went to Northwest Portland and saw the swifts. It is quite the phenomenon. 5000-10,000 birds circle a school and then after sunset and bug eating spiral down in to a big chimney to roost for the night. Sometimes a hawk shows up to hunt, he made a brief appearance tonight. This is very popular in Portland, last year there must have been about four hundred people watching the day I went, tonight maybe one hundred because of a rain storm that only cleared just before we got there. Quite a few folks considering it's been going on all month long. The weather was beautiful actually: cool clouds, pretty sunset, lots of birds.

Last night I wore a jacket for the first time since spring and summer is about up. The equinox is tomorrow. I'm looking forward to knitting with the rain coming down outside but summer felt short this year. We may yet get a few more warm spells.

Posted by Dave at 08:47 PM

September 16, 2008

In to the tub

Today I moved the chicks from the Rubbermaid in to a cast-iron bath tub I happen to have in my basement. They have grown a lot and I think need the extra space or soon will. I got some new bedding for them from a cool place I discovered called Concentrates in industrial inner SE. I am hoping it will be easier maintenance and smell better than the newspaper. The chicks are a lot of fun to watch, I put a roost in the tub which I hope they use. They have been enjoying roosting on top of the waterer and feeder. Their next move will be to the coop. That is not yet built but I have been collecting ideas from various sources and am excited to build it. I hope the chicks like their new home.

Posted by Dave at 11:03 PM

September 14, 2008

Michael's wedding

I made a quick trip to the Jersey shore this weekend to see my friend Michael married and stand as his best man. It was a long way for a short trip but I was very happy to be there. I've gotten to know Tiffany over the last several years and he found an amazing woman in her. Of many reasons I am glad to know her, she taught me to knit which I have enjoyed for over five years now. She made her sister/maid of honor's dress and while in Thailand for six months last year worked with a Thai tailor to make her own wedding dress which was unique and beautiful. more...
See the photos...

Posted by Dave at 11:06 PM |

September 09, 2008

Beer!

On Friday Jen and Kyle had a beer tasting party for Jen's birthday. I'd never been to one before but discovered that as you might expect it's a great concept. Folks brought growlers and told only Jen what kind of beer they contained. Then we all tasted away on a beautiful evening and voted for our favorite IPA, pale, other, and best overall. There were prizes for the people who brought the winning beers. There was a good variety of local beer including some homebrews. I had trouble pouring a little bit for a taste rather than just having a beer. Next time perhaps I'll grab a smaller glass. I bought my first growler for the party at Hopworks for $15. I'm excited to bring it to a bar and say "Fill 'er up". I think you can do that, this is still new to me. more...

Posted by Dave at 12:32 PM

September 02, 2008

Chicks!

Half the reason I decided to blog again is that on Thursday just after returning from the beach I got fifteen baby chicks in the mail! I recently went to a workshop on raising chickens in an urban setting. The nursery that gave the workshop had several bantams running around during the class. This is a smaller breed of chicken. I decided they were for me. Most of the local places only sell chicks seasonally though so I ordered online (where many nurseries get their chicks too). The minimum order was fifteen so the chicks can keep themselves warm in the mail. It is a rough start to their life, they are born and then put in a box and spend a day in the postal system. more...

Posted by Dave at 03:53 PM

Hood to Coast and Manzanita

I organized a Hood to Coast team this year and ran the race for the first time. It was an intense thirty hours of racing even though a whole lot of that was sitting in a van. I'm definitely glad to have experienced this huge event that runs right through Portland but I don't think I need to do it every year. I enjoyed running in the coastal forest at 2 am under a beautiful night sky a lot more than I expected to, I'll have to do that again! Everyone had a great time in both of our vans and then we all crashed at a beach house in Manzanita. The first night I counted twenty racers and supporters plus Sarah! Most everyone left on Sunday but the family stayed down for several more nights and lots of fun activities at the beach. Thanks to everyone for making it a special time, especially to my folks for everything, including procuring food and driving! And to our volunteers Kelly, Rachel, Elvira and Patty!
See the photos...

Posted by Dave at 03:33 PM |

Soulfly

This event was way back in July but it was just too fun not to get a mention here. The second annual Southeast Soulfly generally lived up to the very extravagant expectations set by the original. Again it kicked off at my place and then travelled to five other houses each with a dish, game, and a drink. And some of those drinks were pretty damn strong! Lots of creative costumes and fun people on bikes, how could it go wrong really? Genius Jess!
See the photos...

Posted by Dave at 03:07 PM

Back from vacation

I started this site to post about my bicycle trip across the country in 2002. I did not imagine I would be actively updating it for the next six years. For most of that time blogging has been a fulfilling way to share pictures and stories from my life with family and friends spread out around the country and the world. Earlier this summer the idea of having so much of what I've been up to up for public viewing felt vulnerable for the first time. So I put my blog "on vacation" and also deleted my Facebook account. However I have missed the outlet to share my photos, projects, adventures and stories. And I have heard from others who have missed the updates. And so I resume my blog today knowing that this site is a portal in to my life, it is not my life. There is still a boundary there. My life is in the photographs, behind the camera, in the words of the entries, and in the uncaptured moments. The photo I had up while my blog was on vacation was a sunset from a trip along the Lost Coast I took with Michael in 2005.

Posted by Dave at 08:28 AM |