There and Back Again: The (After)Glow


“Why do you go away?
So that you can come back.
So that you can see the place you came from
with new eyes and extra colors.
And the people there see you differently, too.
Coming back to where you started
is not the same as never leaving.”
Terry Pratchet



Travel invites us to break our routines, sharpen our senses, and open ourselves to seeing our world from a novel point of view.

Back now from a week on the West Coast with daughter and her family, I am enjoying the warm after-glow of our time together as I edit the hundreds of photos which came home with me.



The weather was fine during most of my visit, and so we spent as much time as we could playing on the many beautiful nearby beaches, or letting little one run and explore at the Connie Hansen Garden Conservancy.  I was very pleased to see the upgrades and improvements to the garden there, all accomplished by devoted volunteer gardeners.


A sunset walk at the Connie Hansen garden revealed this beautiful glade beneath old Rhododendrons.


Now nearly four years old, my granddaughter has grown and matured a great deal since I last saw her.  She bubbles with happiness and personality; her fearless energy driving her to explore and transcend the limitations of the very young (and sometimes the very old…)



I watched as my daughter tended her own garden, and as she tended this beautiful child.  It takes great vision, patience and understanding to nurture both children and gardens.  

We wandered together through a local nursery while little one was away at her pre-school class; I indulged in buying herbs, flowers and ferns to grow in my daughter’s garden and in her care.


Beautiful native and exotic ferns fill the shady spots at the Connie Hansen Garden.


There was so much to enjoy and to feel glad about on this visit to the Oregon Coast.  I was delighted to find abundant life in the tidal pools and around the rocks which line the coast.



“Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.”
Anita Desai



I have come home energized and inspired.  Even as I unpack, re-organize and readjust to Eastern time; my mind is teeming with ideas to tend and improve my own garden.  I’ve photos to share, trees to sculpt, bulbs to plant and plans to make with friends.


I made this for a friend one evening, after little one and her mom went home.  Now I am filled with ideas for incorporating sculpted trees with slices of geode to make unique pendants.


There will be a new line of note cards with photos taken in Oregon.  And, I came home with heavy suitcases because I picked up so many beautiful rocks from the beach!

I’ll soon use them as bases for the trees I plan to make over the next few weeks.


What an unusual view of Siletz Bay, with the tide completely gone out.  These trees remain an inspiration to me as I combine organic and mineral forms.


“The real voyage of discovery
consists not in seeking new landscapes,
but in having new eyes.”
Marcel Proust

So fair warning:  I have many photos  left from my trip to share here at Forest Garden during the coming weeks.  I hope you won’t mind too much..

I remain intrigued by how the same plant grown in Virginia and grown in Oregon can come to look so different. Climate and soil make all the difference.

And I am endlessly fascinated by the magic that always greets me in Oregon.


Gorgeous Fuchsia grows at Mossy Creek Pottery near Gleneden Beach, Oregon.

Photos by Woodland Gnome 2017


Fabulous Friday:  Happiness is contagious….
Let’s infect one another!


For the Daily Post’s
Weekly Photo Challenge:  Glow

About woodlandgnome

Lifelong teacher and gardener.

9 responses to “There and Back Again: The (After)Glow

  1. In a word…

    • Thank you, Jane. The trips are intense, but I generally only get out to visit my daughter once a year, and we try to make the most of it. She has a lot going on, and I devote the time to helping her, as I can, while I’m there. On one of these trips, I hope to eventually be able to set aside a few hours for us to get together ❤ ❤ ❤

  2. Oregon looks like such a beautiful place. I’ve not been there yet. I just returned home from a visit with my grandson so I know how this kind of travel can be so inspiring. The pendant is beautiful, and I love the sea anemone. 🙂

    • Thank you, Robin! What a treat to visit with grandchildren, and how hard to part again. I hope you had a marvelous time with your family. The sea anemones were spectacular last week. On some visits, I rarely find them. Life on the rocks seems to be making a comeback. My son-in-law tells me that the life is affected by the sea’s PH and temperature. Conditions appear to be improving, though there were no sea urchins and no sea stars to be found on the beaches we visited. Oregon is very beautiful in many places. But it is a hard life for many of the residents. There isn’t a great deal of economic opportunity in many places, and the weather can be fierce. You learn to be a ‘survivor’ to thrive there!

  3. Pingback: Glow: Passage – What's (in) the picture?

  4. Glad you had a nice time – your granddaughter certainly has grown! Looking forward to seeing more of your trip.

  5. Farrokh Namazi

    So very glad you have been there and back, again. So glad it was a beautiful and enriched trip, and that you got to soak in the beauty, growth and essence of both daughter and grandaughter.
    Looking forward to lots of pictures. Your new line of pendants are gorgeous. Your talent with both jewelry and gardening is both delightful and inspiring. Welcome back.

    • Thank you so much, Farrokh. I hope you and yours are well. I’ll send you a link to more of the photos 😊 With such lovely weather , there were lots of opportunities to get out and play . Will look forward to seeing you next week .

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