DIY weather

valley weather

After a while the fog and frost and damp turn oppressive. We’ve had them endlessly, with freezing temperatures and some kind of weather bureau teasing that is no longer funny. It goes like this:  “Oh yes TODAY will never thaw but TOMORROW will be a tiny bit warmer and then on WEDNESDAY we will be ten degrees better and on THURSDAY or possiby FRIDAY it will be mild and time to get outside and prune the roses.


The days of the week change but the song remains the same as do the actual freezing dark foggy days.  Any moderation is always a mirage that dissolves as it is approached only to reform three days into the future.

But then, we heard a rumor.

This rumor came to Mr O from an actual human being who claimed that the weather at the Oregon coast was lovely and sunny. “But no,” I said, when I heard the rumor.  “Look at the phone weather app for the coast– cloudy and cold,  just like home.”

Mr O refused to believe the phone and we went anyway and there by the ocean we found a day that was beyond beautiful.

Max at the coast

No wind, blue sky, and a sun-warmed moderate air temperature that felt wonderously mild after what we have been through.

January Oregon coastThere were other people with dogs and kids around. Some were even wading in the waves, which shows you how crazy winter can make you. It was not a summer day, but the sun and the blue water and big sky were dazzling, and somehow the waves were huge and close and grander than ever.

beach houses

There was even dry sand up by the land’s edge where most of the beach houses looked vacant, although some sweet child had written “Happy Birthday Mom” in enormous letters in the sand , a message to someone up on that cliff someplace.

walking the January beach Oregon

Mr O was so very right about the weather, and I was glad that I and the phone app had been wrong.  You might think this mature and generous of me, but really what’s the joy of being right compared with a winter picnic by the ocean, with smoked salmon and beer and sun in your eyes?  It was what the evening news might call a win-win situation and I definitely won.

Max studies the pool

Max won too.

Well I just wanted to let the Western Oregon readers know the truth about the coast weather this week (you know who you are!) and to let everyone else know that I am mentally fortified to now create in actual ink on actual paper a schedule for this year’s seed planting yes all of them and no not all at once in the same pot that would be silly.  Probably.

With brand new mental balance,


Oregon coast January

About linniew

Unpublished novelist seeks therapy in gardening. Westie assists.
This entry was posted in Max the Westie, weather and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to DIY weather

  1. Angelique says:

    Beautifully written piece that made me long for those winter trips to the beach. This So Cal has been sadly dropped on the wrong side of the Rockies. I often find myself gazing at the dozens of pictures I have taken throughout my life of the sand, sky, and the glorious waves of the Pacific ocean that used to toss me around, cradle me, and soothe my weary soul. Thank you for sharing your beautiful Pacific Coast day.

    • linniew says:

      Oh Angelique, I am happy to share. But we have to get your next west coast vacation planned and right away! In the meantime I will keep trying to visit your blog even though your server is said to be lost but maybe it’s just at the beach.

  2. Scott says:

    I love any reason to make it to the coast! I’ve been loving our fog/frost the last few days…but we’ve also had it clear up by noon or so, leaving us with blue skies…and keeps it from becoming dull. I’m hoping your weather turns soon too 🙂

    • linniew says:

      Blue skies? Like now? That picture at the top of this post was a few hours ago and now it’s still like that this minute, frost and all, only getting darker… So, to recap, Portland gets two to three great little local restaurants on every block and afternoon January sun too? THIS IS SO UNFAIR. (That wasn’t whining no that was simply an unbiased observation.)

  3. Fay says:

    I’m glad you found your mental balance again, its always tricky when we lose them isn’t it. I love the trees in your patch so beautiful. I think Max enjoyed the beach – very much. My dogs have beach envy as I’m currently banned from beaches for bad behaviour. I’m glad the phone app was discarded by human intervention well done you. Win win indeed. I look forward to your newly found energy!

    • linniew says:

      My mental balance is definitely elusive– I think because it’s more fun without it. Still, one must present a sort of cohesiveness or they won’t even let you into a grocery store. I wish we could have brought your dogs to the coast with us, but I know you will soon be out hiking around again!

  4. Ah yes. Mental balance can never be underrated or is it overrated? Anyway, that last photo of the sun just off the perimeter of the camera’s lens, well maybe about halfway on the lens, now that I’ve double-checked, is so lovely. Max looks adorable out on the beach, sniffing around. This post makes me happy, Linnie. A huge kudos to Mr. O and a lesson on the sometimes unreliability of phone apps. 🙂

    PS~~ The banner and first photo aren’t half bad either, you know. Just sayin’.

    • linniew says:

      Hi Gracie! All the beach images were made with the iphone–you see I didn’t throw it into the sea even though it got the weather so wrong– but the frost images were made with Mr O’s Complicated Camera but of course set on Automatic which I’ve found makes it so the picture doesn’t turn out quite so blank.

  5. Lyn says:

    I’m glad you had a day of respite. Winter is one of my favourite times to be at the beach, even though I am rarely escaping ice, just greyness.

    • linniew says:

      Our coast is only an hour away from my house but the weather is often opposite to whatever we are experiencing. Or sometimes, in the case of storms, it’s much worse. But in the spring and fall especially the coast can be balmy and fair while in August, when we are too hot and dry, it is foggy and cool–altogether a very useful escape.

  6. Alberto says:

    I have never seen the ocean in my entire life. It looks greater than the sea and more frothy too. Although the first pic of your garden is very pretty I am so glad you made it to the coast, I couldn’t imagine reading the words ‘mental balance’ in your blog again, not before April or May.
    You will post about that seed schedule, right? (not that I want proofs of our mental balance…)

    • linniew says:

      I haven’t seen your sea either. Perhaps I have never seen any sea but I have seen the Atlantic and it didn’t have the big waves of the Pacific. When you come to visit me I will be certain to get you to the beaches here Alberto. And ALL Oregon beaches are public and also allow dogs– not like California where people own private beaches and dogs get arrested. (Yes Max had a few awkward moments in California once.) I haven’t yet drawn up the great seed-planting document but I will try to post an image for those who obviously have no faith at all in my strict and formal approach to gardening.

      • Alberto says:

        Mina is very concerned about Max being an ex-convict, no wonder he isn’t tanned at all…
        And, by the way, I’d like to inform you that I could even enter the no dog zones, if you are also planning on formal paper a schedule in case I pay you a visit…

        • linniew says:

          Well Max never actually served time, since he had his lawyer (me) to explain to the police that we were not from California and had just assumed ALL beaches were like in Oregon. (It was especially difficult when we crashed that expensive oceanside wedding on a hotel beach in San Diego…) So, you won’t be buying Mina a ticket too when you come? Well okay. Max will get over it.

  7. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Is this a mirage? Could there possibly be blue sky and sun somewhere close to us? How could this be? Your trip and picnic in the sun sound fabulous. Almost too good to be true.

    • linniew says:

      Peter I did not make up the coast weather. Honestly, just because a person occasionally enhances reality the tiniest bit is no reason to doubt a whole day of weather.

  8. Katie says:

    We had a lovely day yesterday down here in California and I’m feeling optimistic too. Winter is like a long underwater swim. If we couldn’t catch our breath on the sunny days, we would surely drown.

  9. b-a-g says:

    Thanks , it’s the first picture of real-time sunshine I’ve seen this year. I assume those waders were smeared in whale blubber or something.

    • linniew says:

      Oh yes– most shoe stores here sell it, very useful and saves on both boots and sometimes raincoats although it does have a few negative characteristics and is hard on whales –there’s a new synthetic version made I think of cottonseed oil.

  10. A day at the beach sounds incredible. I miss the rocky beaches of northern California. It’s been cold here (10-20 F) but I thought it felt good. I like it when winter is assertive. It kills all the blackspot spores that torture my roses.

    • linniew says:

      …and the wasps, I hope. I do like snow but it’s hard to come by here. Today we have not-quite-freezing rain. I agree, the northern California coast is breathtaking.

  11. Ricki Grady says:

    I think you just gave all of us a little adjustment to our mental balance.

    • linniew says:

      Well Ricki it’s really all relative right? I mean angles and views and what looks say vertical or perpendicular or upside down? So a little shift might correct it but would at the least change everything a bit. I hope you enjoy the adjustment!

  12. Cynthia says:

    So glad you had a lovely day at the beach. Sunshine is very important for my mental balance, and that’s why I don’t live in Oregon!

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