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  1. I hope you don’t mind that I have added you to my blogroll. I want to keep up with you and what you have been through and how you are doing.

    I live in a 3-generation-of-women household, and guess I’m the ‘baloney’ in the middle. My mother has Alz, and my daughter gave up her life/career to be the full-time caregiver while I earn the living to support us.

    My daughter gets the brunt of so much of the challenges of the various stages, various days, etc. I think the absolute world of her for taking on this side of the situation.

    We have looked around for kindred spirits who actually understand this journey, not just those who think we can make my mother “better” by [insert impossible suggestion here].

    Again, I thank you for sharing. You are an awesome writer and I weep with you (and for us) in sharing your words.


  2. You know, I have had so many positive responses from this blog that I have suspended my plans on writing about other things. It is a sometimes painful thing to write about, and not something I can pour out every day. Some of it I find hard to remember, which in itself is scary. In 5 short years – which seemed so long at the time – my mother was gone. There were so many ups and downs along the way. At times I felt I gave up so many things I wanted to do, but that is one of the big lessons here. Alzheimer’s has got to be one of the cruelest diseases. Watching your loved one slowly crumble in confusion is gut-wrenching. I came to know my mother as this incredible courageous person whom I might otherwise never have known. I so admire the three of you sticking together. When it gets down to it – when you realize that so little in life is really necessary – you also realize that family – however that is defined – is all that really matters. Why are we here, after all, if not to help one another? And who are we if we do not? These things define us. My heart goes out to you. Embrace the things that bring you closer, even if you can’t see it at the time.

    Yes, it helps to know other people have been there. Contact me any time you feel alone in one of those dark places – or on the flip side, when it is fun to celebrate with others a bright moment. As time goes on, moments are all we get, so we have to appreciate them.

    And thank you for adding me to your blogroll. I am new to how this works, but I am finding that it’s all about people. Connections make that happen. I am so glad I have this chance to get to know you and several others who have contacted me through this medium. Technology is amazing, isn’t it?

  3. Hi Blythe.
    Although I love WordPress for the features it gives for the look of the site, I have been evaluating different blog hosts and because one of my purposes to blog is to generate some income, I will most likely switch to using my blogger site ( If you would like to check that site out and perhaps switch to it on your blogroll. Eventually, I would like to find a good software and host my own domain for my blog, but in the meantime, to continue learning about the income from blogging, I will use blogger. I hope to see you over there and I may end up deleting this WordPress site to avoid confusion.
    Take care!

  4. Hmmm – I never even thought about making $ off this blogging thing. It gets kind of addictive, you know. It’s opened a whole different world to me. My computer has turned into a time machine – it just sucks away the time and the next thing I know, hours have disappeared!

    I will change your link – and your name while I’m at it (glad you like the idea of Davy’s Locker – I live by the ocean, so the idea of pirates dredging things up from the bottom of the sea comes rather naturally).

    I am interested in hearing more about how things work out with your mom. And I can definitely use some help in the tech dept. So I will keep checking in.

    With blogspot, I had trouble signing in and leaving a comment on Jen’s page, but maybe it was a glitch in the system that particular day. I tried several times to change my sign-in name & password and it kept telling me I didn’t have the right info. But I might reconsider converting.

    Thanks for the reference to my blog on your new site! That was very nice of you.

  5. I love the pics on your new site! Your gift is truely your creativity and artistic abilities in both writing and photography. I am still learning more and more about the blogging for money thing. It is a slow process and obviously has to do with big numbers of visitors to the site, which I have yet to discover that secret. I love the experiences you share about where you live and how you make it visible in my imagination. Thanks for the continued thoughts and I will keep in touch.

  6. Thanks, Dave. The hardest part is finding time to do all this!

  7. very cool! I missed it.

  8. I love your blog!! You love in an amazing area and do a great job of sharing it with the rest of us! I would like to add you to my blogroll and if you like my blog please feel free to do the same. Thanks for doing what you do.

    • Bob- Sorry for my late reply – your comment was trapped in the spam hole! Glad I checked! Thanks for visiting my site, and I am very glad you like it. I am flattered that you would add me to your blogroll. Thanks. The thing about putting yourself in wild places (even in your own backyard), is that it gives you the opportunity to connect with something bigger than yourself – and maybe learn something about yourself in the process. In trying to share the beauty of places I realize I am quite privileged to experience, a bit of that philosophy creeps in. And I think that is where you and I connect as well. I thoroughly enjoyed your writing. Very insightful!

  9. Hi there,
    I just found your beautiful blog. I am looking for a good spot near Seattle to record audio from seals and sea lions. Could you give me any advice where I can find great and lonely spot in september and where I can safely get as near as possible?
    Thank you very much and greetings from overseas.

    • Thank you for your kind words, Axel! And glad you found my blog – I am continually amazed at how the WordPress forum reaches so many people. I don’t post on here much anymore because I have switched to my main blog at – but I keep this one going (sort of) because I still find interesting people through it that I don’t otherwise meet.

      In answer to your question – you might want to read my post about silence and a very interesting person, Gordon Hempton, who is recording the sounds of silence: Gordon can be reached through his website: . He has some amazing recordings of what you can hear in wild and remote places, which are getting harder and harder to find!

      Re: seals – I don’t consider myself an expert, but in our travels, particularly when kayaking, we come across many seals on the Olympic Peninsula where we live and on Vancouver Island, BC – however – and this is a big however – they are rather quiet but curious animals that like to follow you from a distance. They like to snooze in the sun on beaches and rocks (not a noisy moment conducive to recording!). And they are often in high-energy environments where the sound of waves crashing on rocks drown out their occasional barking. I would imagine they make more noise establishing dominance and territory during breeding seasons, which I believe is a little later in the year.

      A sideline story: a sea lion was once swimming underwater and unknowingly came up right beside our boats – was totally startled to find us there – shot up in the air and flopped over backwards, creating a wake that almost toppled us over! We were just as shocked as he was. These are large, powerful animals; I do not recommend getting that close on purpose!

      As far as good spots to find them – a lot of places are hit & miss. Sometimes you see them, sometimes you don’t. The Dungeness Lighthouse/Dungeness Bay is near our home, so we go there frequently and almost always see lots of seals and occasional sea lions. We’ve seen sea lions on nearby Protection Island, but as the name implies, it is protected and people are required to keep their distance. We usually see a group of seals when we kayak west of Port Angeles from Freshwater Bay toward Salt Creek (which is where we bumped into the sea lion!). These are not necessarily the best places to record them, however. We have also seen seals, sea lions, and whales out at the far northwest tip of the continental US: Cape Flattery, which is on the Makah Indian Reservation. Tatoosh Island is a place where they often gather, but it would not be easy to record them from a distance. You might be able to find someone local who would take you closer with a boat.

      If you can go north of Vancouver Island to the Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands) in BC (kayaking trip of my dreams!), you will be almost guaranteed to see sea lions. You will also find them on the northern coast of Vancouver Island and on the east coast, where they gather in December – April to take advantage of the herring runs (bonus: you’ll also see the Orca whales). These places are still quite remote, depending on where you are, and Vancouver Island is certainly more accessible than the Haida Gwaii.

      Here in the States, we just got back from a trip down the Oregon Coast (blog post to come in the near future – stay tuned!). Where we camped, we saw a pile of harbor seals that lazed in the sun all day long and then fished the rip tides in the afternoons and evenings. If you go down as far as Florence, OR, you can visit the Sea Lion Caves. Ok – this is hardly remote or lonely – and in fact, the number of tourists can be a bit annoying – but at least in September or later, it will be the off season, and so there will be fewer 2-legged animals! There is an elevator that takes you down to the cave – and the sheer number of sea lions – and the noise of their barking, the birds, the waves – are all very inspiring. To be honest, I haven’t been there in years, but I’ve heard it’s still a popular hangout for the pinniped clans. You might also see migrating gray whales. We didn’t go down as far as Florence on our trip, but even so, we visited one gorgeous beach after another, and outside of the parks, many of them had free access and just a few locals strolling along the shores.

      I have contacted my friend, Gordon Hempton, to see what kind of advice he can give, but in the meantime, hope this is helpful, and wherever you go, have a wonderful trip! Hope to hear from you again!

  10. Hi Blythe,
    wow, now that is an awesome response. Thank you very much.
    You are right. Blogs are great if they are specific enough. And yours definitely is 😉
    I think I will try to drive down the 101 and check out the coast line from time to time. If I can find a good spot north of Florence that would be perfect. If not, I will visit the Sea Lion Caves. Probably that is my best chance.
    The other one that might be pretty interesting is to ask locals to drive me out with a boat. I just found bigger boat rental stations, do you have any advice how I could probably find someone who would be willing doing that? Of course I can pay for a trip (depending on how expensive that would be).
    Thank you also for asking Gordon for me. I guess you can see my normal email address, just in case you got any updates for me from Gordon.
    I will print out your post and reread it later again, because there are pretty much good information for me in it.
    Thanks again!

  11. This is really a timely conversation, because it is exactly what I was about to write about on my next post – so you will get the sneak previews.

    On our recent trip, we headed down Hwy 101, just figuring we’d find places to stay along the way. Well, the maps show little icons that designate campgrounds. We found these were invariably state and county parks with high fees. They were often crowded areas with “Loop A, Loop D,” etc., lots of little kids on bicycles, dogs, and people who check out their neighbors’ coolers after dark. I’m not against kids & dogs, mind you – but we were hoping for something not quite so congested. Parking lot camping usually isn’t our style – but a base camp can still be a good jump-off point for other places if parking lots are all you can find.

    Anyway – we came across this funky little family-owned campground (they also rent cabins) south of Cannon Beach, north of Tillamook, near Nehalem Bay, called Jetty Fishery. They were selling crab & humongous oysters – seriously, I didn’t know they got that large and I live in prime oyster country. Yes, it was “parking lot” camping – but there were few spots and hardly anyone was there. We looked right out at the waves breaking over the bar at the entrance to the Nehalem River. Across the water was a spit on which lounged the pile of seals I spoke about. It was safe – everyone kind of watched out for one another – the people were friendly & colorful – and we went up and down the coast from that spot and could find nowhere we’d rather be. Plus, our money went to helping a family. They have a small boating business – rent your own & go fishing or crabbing – or hire them to take you places. I highly recommend them. (

    When we drove south, the closer we got to Newport, the crazier it became. Lots of beautiful places along the way. I am sure there are other privately owned places along the coast with folks trying to make a living in a tough economy – whether campgrounds, B&Bs, or whatever. I’m just saying you can find some very cool places by just keeping an eye out – and those folks can probably turn you on to where the locals go – places that aren’t featured in the glossy brochures or on maps – or someone who has a boat to take you somewhere the 101 traffic stream usually doesn’t see. The thing about boats, though, is that there is really high surf along the Oregon coast, so you pretty much have to be in a protected bay area or be able to get out far enough to be beyond the breakers and the rocks.

    Again – hope this is helpful – and have a great time!

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