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Artists, Luaus, and Bears in the Cove

Sunshine through the trees in my view from the greenhouse on Tenmile Lake in Oregon

View from the greenhouse on Thursday

Happy Friday, the 13th my sweet friends! I missed you all last week. I have to admit, I was in a bit of a state of overwhelm and just couldn’t imagine adding one more thing to my plate last Friday. Something had to fall off, and as it often happens, the thing I love (writing) fell off the plate. With four client projects going at once, I found myself juggling a lot of balls recently and while I am grateful for them all and actually love working on multiple projects as I believe that each inspires the other, I still found myself a little flustered. I took the time to work heavily on one of the projects last Thursday and Friday to make a larger dent in getting the work done. The fun thing about that project is that it is an illustration project so I’m very excited for the outcome! I’ll share it with you all when it’s finished.

I also had a really boring week – the week before last – for blogging. Not much to talk about other than client work, work, work all week! Lol! This past week was back to normal. I’m still juggling those projects but feeling much more on top of things after taking those two days to really get farther along. And I was able to sneak in some fun this past week – which I find incredibly important to my mental health. I don’t know if there is ever really a true work-life balance in my life but I strive for it daily. I try to go outdoors for at least an hour each day – oftentimes, more like 3-4 in the evening. I am conscious of taking lunch breaks and nourishing myself with good foods to re-energize mid-day. And I make plans with the YaYas of the Lake (our little friend group here on the lake). Those plans definitely keep me going. I would love to hear how you work towards a work-life balance and if you are achieving it, I’d love to hear your secret(s)!

View from the deck at our lake cabin on Tenmile Lake in Lakeside, Oregon

View from the deck Monday evening

This week was filled with more fun than the one before and I could not be more grateful for the wonderful friends I have here on the lake and for my sweetie who has really stepped up in helping life feel more pleasurable in the moments when I’m not working.

Saturday was the first of two YaYa outings last week and a few of us headed down to an Artisan Market in Langlois – about an hour and a half south of us. Before we got on the road, my sweet friend, Maria, gave me a special surprise. I had been telling her how much I had always wanted one of those beautiful, Mexican dresses with the embroidered flowers across the top and sleeves and edges. Turns out that she says she has hundreds of them that she has collected over the years and she brought me THREE of them! A red, blue, and white one, and the details in the embroidery are gorgeous. And, lucky day, all three of them fit! They will definitely be my new summer dresses for next year. I’m over the (harvest) moon about them.

Mexican embroidered dresses

Mexican embroidered dresses from my sweet friend, Maria

The Artisan Market had their special Harvest Moon edition of the market and it was so much fun! They decorated the building's interior so beautifully with big moons hanging from the ceiling and little, white twinkle lights. The vibe was perfect Autumn-deliciousness. There were a TON of incredible vendors with so many gorgeous arts and crafts. I purchased two lovely mugs for tea, a new boho rainbow keychain, a macrame wristlet (planning to carry my water bottle with it on hikes), a pottery berry basket, and the most adorable little birdhouse stake to “plant” in my garden. There were even more treasures I wanted to purchase. If I had the money, I would have gotten something from every vendor – that’s how great everyone’s items were!

Harvest Moon Artisan Market in Langlois, Oregon

Harvest Moon Artisan Market in Langlois

Exterior of Langlois Cheese Factory event venue in Langlois, Oregon

Outside of the artisan market at the Langlois Cheese Factory

Hand made red ceramic mug from Harvest Moon Artisan Market in Langlois, Oregon

Hand-made ceramic mug from the Artisan Market - I love red, it's so cheery!

I also got to meet a sweet virtual friend who I know through TikTok and Facebook and the bellydance community. She’s the one I purchased the hand-built mug from. If you look closely in the photo, it says “Dance in the rain” on one side and “Bee a wildflower” on the other and there is a tiny bee at the bottom of the inside of the mug. So darn cute! And very “me”. I always say that my life’s theme song is Tom Petty’s “Wildflowers”. It was so fun to meet her and see her beautiful hand-crafted items in person.

Hand made mug from Laura Pallitin from the Harvest Moon Artisan Market in Langlois, Oregon

"Bee a wildflower... dance in the rain..."; by Laura Pallatin

After we walked through the Artisan Market, we were all getting hungry for lunch and decided to head back north a bit to Bandon to eat at one of our new favorite restaurants, The Wheelhouse. The food there is scrumptious every time, no matter what I order. Two of us had the shrimp and chips and our other friend got a shrimp po’ boy. Everything lived up to its reputation and we had the most lovely lunch sitting next to the sea. Upon arriving, we parked at a lovely little shop that we’d never visited before in Bandon called “Sweet Peas”. I was over-the-moon because I thought it was going to be a plant nursery – and I don’t know if you can tell yet, but my current addiction is gardening and all-things-plants! We visited the little shop after lunch and although they do have a few plants out back, the interior of the shop is where the “good stuff” is. They have so many wonderful treasures and gifts and things for your home and life. And everything was so unique! I purchased a new hip belt hand-crafted from real leather by a local artist. It was quite pricey but I know it will last a lifetime so I am very pleased to have found it. And, I have to add that being a plus-sized gal makes it hard to find hip belts that are cute AND that fit. This one was long enough because it was built to be either on your hips or worn as a cross-body bag. It is perfect! And I rarely see such beautiful colors of leather… the rich blue-green is just stunning in person.

Adorable wood and macrame rainbow keychain from A Branch & Cord

Adorable macrame rainbow keychain from A Branch & Cord

Ceramic berry bowl by Seaward Ceramics

After lunch and a little more shopping, we were ready to head home. We had a lovely drive back to our little lake, chatting and telling stories. I love that we all continue to grow closer as friends each time we get to spend time together. It’s wonderful to be surrounded by so much love. I truly attribute being able to get so close to living in a tiny town. When I lived in a large suburb in Southern California, I had lots and lots of friends but we only saw each other a couple times a year. We were all so busy and so stimulated by everything going on around us – myself included. We were stuck in our ruts and it was cozy and felt good to continue on in our routines. But what I didn’t realize until we moved was that we weren’t really LIVING the way that we are now. We weren’t treating each day like a new treasure. We weren’t careful to be sure to spend time with people we cared about – not that we didn’t spend time with them, it just wasn’t a priority. We were stuck in the “rat race” and I’m so happy we made it out of the maze. I tell everyone who asks why it seems that I live such a blessed life that it’s because I live in a tiny town where people really care about each other – even those that I don’t know yet.

Ceramic birdhouse stake for the garden by The Watering Can Pottery

Ceramic birdhouse stake for the cottage garden; by The Watering Can Pottery

I returned home that evening with that wonderful sort of exhaustion that you get when you’ve had a big day out filled with fun, laughter, and great conversation. And then I got to get up Sunday morning and do it all again!

Sunday morning, I met up with my sweet friend Susan so that we could head to North Bend (about 30 minutes south of us) to see our other dear friend Laura perform in a Luau fundraiser in support of the families who lost everything during the fires in Lanai, Hawaii. We met up early so that we could chat and catch up with each other prior to the show. Neither of us had eaten breakfast – we were too busy getting ready to meet up! So we headed to North Bend early and stopped at Safeway for bagels. Susan got cream cheese for hers and I got Harvarti cheese with caraway seeds (a treat that I can only find at Safeway in the city). We were going to head to the park to sit and chat but realized it would be too far away to get back in time. Instead, we headed to the airport (sounds silly but bear with me). Our airport in North Bend is tiny! One runway, one terminal and it sits overlooking the ocean. We parked in the upper section of the parking lot with a view of the ocean and the planes – or I should say ONE plane took off in the hour that we sat there, lol. I think they have two flights per day which is pretty incredible considering how small the population of the area is. The flights are most often filled with golfers headed to Bandon Dunes Golf Resort – a world-class set of golf courses and lodging overlooking the ocean. I’m not even a golfer and I think the place is pretty spectacular.

Blume Bauer dressed and ready for the Luau fundraiser for Lanai, Hawaii

Ready for the luau!

We sat and chatted and caught up on all the things we hadn’t gotten to talk about over the previous couple of weeks – even though we text almost daily. Lol! Our bagels were flavorful and the conversation is always such a welcome treat. Susan and I can talk together for hours on end!

When it was time for the show to start, we drove over to the venue and got in line to enter. It turned out that with our donation, we got entered into a raffle for a ukulele - so fun! I have really been wanting to learn to play the ukulele, but alas, it was not meant to be just yet as I did not win… this time! The luau was delightful. The ukulele performers knew so many songs, they played for almost two hours! Some of the songs included hula dancing with and without props. I think my favorite prop was one that I had never seen before – bamboo sticks. The sticks had slices cut into them about 3/4 of the way down each piece of bamboo. When the dancer tapped them together, they made a sound similar to a rain stick with a swooshy-whack and when the solid sides were tapped together, they sounded more like a drum. It was intriguing to watch her play them like an instrument. The leader of the show was a phenomenal storyteller and she explained what all of the Hawaiian songs were about so that we could follow along through their dancing. It was a really wonderful afternoon!

MC and storyteller from the Luau fundraiser for Lanai, Hawaii

Our storyteller from the Luau

Bamboo sticks performance

After the show, Susan and I met up with Laura at Tai's Dynasty – a local Chinese food restaurant near the show, and headed back home to Laura’s house. We ordered takeout and headed to Laura’s for an early dinner at her place and lots more conversation and laughter. After dinner, we headed down to her game room and played ping pong, listened to music, and laughed so hard that we were almost peeing our pants! I love that these two ladies love to do physical things – it’s so much fun to get to play around like we’re kids. And we all love the same music, so we’re always singing each of our favorite songs as we play. We had the BEST time and were sad to see it come to an end but we wanted to get Susan home before dark. She lives boat-access only and doesn’t have a boat with big lights on it to see in the dark.

I returned home, once again filled with happy exhaustion. Overjoyed at spending the weekend with such sweet friends and feeling my stomach muscles ache from all of the laughter.

The rest of the week was mostly filled with work but it is also time to start cleaning up the summer garden as things die back. Dead-heading flowers that I can’t believe are still blooming and thriving so late in the season. The geraniums are still going strong, although the plants in the big barrel pot have become quite leggy. I need to look up how to take care of them before winter. I can also tell that her clumps of flowers are progressively getting smaller and smaller. My coreopsis is a happy little camper and still producing, bright yellow-orange blooms. And the rose campion is the gift that keeps on giving! I cut back the dead flowers and she just sprouts more and more brilliant purple blooms. Oh, and my zinnia I shared a photo of a month ago is still in bloom and looking as lovely as ever. I’ll definitely be adding more zinnias to the garden next year. They are really perseverant!

Tomatoes from my garden harvest on Tenmile Lake, Oregon

Tomato harvest this week...

Orange begonia flowers from my deck garden in Lakeside, Oregon

Orange begonias are still strong!

Passion flower from my deck garden in Lakeside, Oregon

Passion flower (from my sis!)

Fuchsia flowers from my deck garden on Tenmile Lake, Lakeside, Oregon

The fuchsias love the rain and cool weather!

We also had a very exciting encounter with a baby bear this week. The sweetie and I were sitting and chatting near the windows facing the lake and suddenly, he exclaimed “that’s a bear!”. I looked out the window and sure enough, a baby bear – on the larger side, probably a year old? – was timidly sauntering through the cove. He kept looking about to make sure he was safe and just followed the deer trail as he walked on through. He was so darn cute! I sure wish they were cuddly. Ha! Of course, now I can’t bear (pun intended) to let the cats out for a while until we know he’s moved on to hopefully greener pastures. This time of year is a little more dangerous with bears as they are in their final preparation for hibernation and looking to fill up their bellies. Apparently, bears don’t hibernate in the way that we think they do – especially somewhere like here that stays mostly moderate temperatures year-round. But they do still try to bulk up for the winter and they sleep a considerable amount more than they do in the summer months – sort of like humans. Lol! I find myself living much more like the animals here in the wild and embracing the season of rest during the winter months. I realize more and more that we need rest too, just like every living thing on this planet.

Baby bear walking across the cove at our lake cabin on Tenmile Lake, Lakeside, Oregon

Baby bear in the cove!

Are you looking forward to cozying up this winter and settling in for a long winter’s rest? Let me know in the comments.

Hugs and kisses from Blume Bauer and The Yellow Desk blog


New leggings and a pillow I designed from my illustrations this week!

Blue capri leggings with pink and purple astrantia flowers pattern

Blue-green throw pillow with pink astrantia flower art

Blue leggings with pockets with white daisy pattern; available in plus sizes

Blue capri leggings with white daisy pattern


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Illustration by Blume Bauer ©

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