Thursday, July 29, 2010

Harris State Park

This was the first place we stopped once we were over the border from Oregon to California. I've seen many beaches around the world and I have to rate some of California's as among the best.

The sand was deep and warm, the temperature was perfect, the water was cold without being was one of those moments in life of sheer "Aaaaahhhh". 

An unexpected bonus on this road trip was all of the fantastic little bead and jewelry shops along the 101 Hwy throughout Oregon and California. I wish I'd had more time to explore them. If anyone has a favorite shop along that route, share the info with me. I'd love to hear about it!


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tripping the PNW Coast Fantastic

Ah! It's good to be back. Last week we traveled down Hwy 101 through Washington state, Oregon and California. I could just about KICK myself for not stopping and getting more pictures. There were some unbelievable parts to see but I just couldn't bear pulling off the highway into a view spot. Navigating the death defying twists and turns with a wall of rock on one side of the highway and a  sheer drop off into the ocean next to the car, left me white knuckled at best. I've never seen anything like it. We took a stop to stretch our legs at Bruceport State Park in Oregon. We went on a wild adventure down a mysterious path and found lots of great hidden treasures.

And finally, late evening, we reached a spot at a true beach. Can anyone else relate to being slightly freaked out by birds after having seen Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"? If so, then imagine visiting this beach, with that fear, sitting next to a person who got 4 special treats landing on them from above. It was like machine gun fire.
It was a great trip and there are more photo's to come. But, there's no place like home! I can't wait to get back to work and finish my chain maille piece. Ciao! xoxo

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Hey, Hey, Hey!!!

Time to check in and catch you up to date. I got in and sorted out the chain maille (woo hoo!!) and I got some more fabulous shots of the store to share with you.

The store has much more than just beads and I'm going to see if I can share some photo's of some of the fantastic tie dyed materials in the store they have from some of the local artists soon.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Live Long and Prosper

I have spent much time and many resources in my life trying to sort out the mysteries of good health and my relationship with food. It's not just about looking good. It's about feeling good. I wanted to share two books with you that have really changed my life so far. 

The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth by Jonny Bowden is chock full of well researched information. It's written in a clear and concise way and really breaks things down simplistically. I don't know about anyone else, but the simpler it is for me to understand, the better. This was the first source of information that really gave me any solid footing on food and nutrition. Well worth investigating if you're like me at all and struggle with these issues. 

The Enzyme factor by Hiromi Shinya is my latest greatest discovery. This book has a completely different approach. Dr. Shinya's inspiration for researching these types of issues all began from his medical practice. He's one of the most renowned colonoscopists in the United States and he's compiled decades worth of research about life choices impacting our physical health. It's a very good, easy, and short read. It provides a lot of insight into processes in the body and gives good suggestions to alter your lifestyle.

I hope that you get as much or more benefit out of these two books as I do. It's been a long day, an even longer week, and am super happy that it's the weekend! Have a great night everyone!

Rachel of Symbiotic Life

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A New Dawn

Photo courtesy of Nicole Bond

It looks like the gray rainy days of our unusually long spring are fading and the sun.....the beautiful long awaited sun is finally here. With the tide out, it felt like we could walk to and from Seattle across Puget Sound.

The weather was so beautiful I took my work outside and made a good bit of progress on one of my latest pieces. I'm still stuck with my chain maille. Hopefully, I'll take it to Amy Margaret Kapphan who has more experience and she can give me some guidance. She does some amazing work and has a shop on etsy. Definitely a must see to all of us who are into anything handmade. Amy happens to be one of the most killer talented artists in the area. I met her while visiting my local go to spot for supplies, Beads of Bainbridge.

I'll be getting some more photo's of the place to give you guys a peek of the store inside. What I really love about the store, is the quality of their merchandise. It's easy enough to order supplies online or go to a large nationwide chain store and feel like you're getting a "good price" on your supplies, but it's often hard to get a feel for the quality of the items. I've never been disappointed with the quality of any of the supplies I've gotten from here. The store doesn't mark up the prices enough to warrant large scale discount sales. The work areas are another appealing quality to the store. The staff and owners are knowledgeable, talented, creative and helpful. If you're in the area definitely take advantage and visit them at 162 Bjune Dr SE Bainbridge Island, WA.  They carry a lot of work done by the local artists so if you see something you like, you can always take home a piece of the Island with you. I'm hoping I can convince Miss Amy into letting me feature her on the blog. She's amazing! 

Alright everybody, time to run! Enjoy the sun!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Tip of the iceberg

This weekend was all about exploration and our journey brought us to quaint and wonderful downtown Poulsbo, WA. Our exploration was nowhere near comprehensive so there will definitely be more to come.

We started our day with a fabulous breakfast of frittes buried under sauteed kale and onions, a baked salmon, topped with a poached egg. It was loved all around, even the 2 year old cleaned his plate. 

Downtown Poulsbo and the Poulsbo Marina

Such a neat day and I got to take some pictures for some necklaces I've been working on. 

What do you think? I'd love to hear your feedback! Have a beautiful night everyone.
Rachel of SymbioticLife

Sunday, July 11, 2010

I eat chain maille for breakfast

Alright, so maybe I don't eat it for breakfast.....yet. I've been doing my best to learn the jewelry making form of chain maille. I've taken vintage bronze wire, researched methods, and successfully made my own jump rings. I've been studying the European 4-in-1 technique for making chain maille and to be honest, my first two serious attempts aren't going so well.

 Attempt 1
 Attempt 2

Below is the toggle that inspired this whole necklace to begin with. 

Thank goodness I'm stubborn. I will not only figure out how to do this technique, but I will master it, to the point of a fine art form and angels will sing! :D Ok, maybe that's reaching, but a gal can dream.

Cheers everyone!
Rachel of Symbiotic Life