Monday, August 31, 2009

100th Annual Dahlia Show

My parents came out for a visit last week from Montana for a few days. We had no plans made other than blueberry picking so I browsed the internets in search of something for us to do. I came across the 100th Annual Dahlia Show in my search. My parents are avid gardeners, both vegetable and flowers. Though they don't have any dahlia's in their garden, I thought it would be something fun to do. We drove out to Forest Park in Everett to check it out.

There were several buildings full of dahlia's and even tables outside that were stacked. A couple of buildings were filled with a single dahlia in a pot. One building was full of the history of dahlias. Not being a history fan, I didn't spend much time in that building, too much reading for me! There was another building with photos of dahlias. My favorite building though was the flower arrangements. There were a lot of fun and creative pieces. These were two of my favorites. I have more photos from the show on Flickr.

After the Dahlia festival we took a short drive to Mukilteo and visited the Lighthouse Park. I've never been there but have always wanted to go because I love to photograph lighthouses. While my parents stared out at the water and watched the ferries come in and out, me and Mark went up into the lighthouse. There was a nice view of the Puget Sound and the ferry docks. We couldn't spend too much time up there because only a couple people are allowed up at a time and there were more people waiting to go up so we took a few snapshots and headed back down.

It was a nice warm day and the ice cream was calling us so we walked a few blocks to get some soft serve at Ivars. I actually got a root beer float which I haven't had in I don't know how long, but it hit the spot.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Blueberry picking

Originally uploaded by gapey
It's that time of year again for picking blueberries. Last year I went to Life Mountain Blueberries in Gold Bar on their last day of picking. They are a certified organic blueberry farm. This year we went to Overlake Blueberry Farm in Bellevue near the Mercer Slough Nature Park. They too are a certified organic farm.

The weather this summer has been pretty hot and dry and I'm not sure if this place does any watering or not. There were tons of bushes and several varieties of blueberries. There were also a ton of people picking. They take your driver's license when you come in and they must have had a stack of at least 75 licenses. Parking was hard to come by as well. I'm sure it's much less crowded on a weekday. We ended up with about 4 pounds of berries and paid around $6. Seems like a pretty good deal for organic berries.

My parents will be up to visit this weekend and they're wanting to do some berry picking so we will probably go to Life Mountain Blueberries. I heard the berries were a little small and dry due to not much rain but we got some good rain the last week or so and am hoping that will plump up the berries for us.

I brought Danbo and Smiley Guy along to help. More pics from our berry picking in Bellevue can be found here.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Seattle/Tacoma PUG BBQ

Seattle/Tacoma PUG BBQ
Originally uploaded by gapey
I went to my first PUG (Pictage User Group) meeting a few weeks ago with Mark, who's been to at least one before. Even though we don't use Pictage, they are a welcoming group and welcome any photographer to come to their meetings. They are made up of mostly wedding and portrait photographers. There is a Tacoma PUG and Seattle PUG group, but the Seattle group seems to have merged with the Tacoma one.

The BBQ took place in Seattle on Alex Rubin's rooftop deck and was organized by Airika and Gerald Pope. Everyone brought a little something to share. We ended up bringing what I would call tostada cups. They were made with Phyllo pastry cups filled with refried beans, cheese, lettuce, and sour cream. I got the idea from a recipe I found online for taco cups but I decided to change up the recipe a bit by including the refried beans. They seemed to go pretty quick.

Not too many people brought cameras which was a little surprising. We brought ours but ended up not taking very many pics because we were busy meeting and chatting. We didn't really know any of the other photographers there but had heard of several of them from their great work. We enjoyed meeting everyone and checking out a few of their websites.

We are looking forward to the next meeting in Tacoma where Jeff and Erin Youngren will be guest speaking. More details are on the Tacoma Pug Facebook page if you're interested.