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Almost There

Note*:  I accidently posted this on the wrong blog! For more of our Ireland adventure stories go to http://irelandwwoofadventure.wordpress.com

I had a bit of a shock just a minute ago when I realized this will be the second to last blog post about our journey. It’s funny, we’ve been home about a week now but having the blog end makes the whole trip ending seem more real. But before signing off with our final thoughts of this whole experience, here is just a bit about the last few stops of our trip: Kilkenny, Donegal, and Kinsale.

Donegal was a lovely little town with some great shops and a great castle that we toured:

Donegal Castle: 

I thought these two models of how Donegal Castle has changed over the centuries were really interesting and show how the focus shifted from security to comfort: 

Kilkenny was another medieval village with a lot of character. It also had another great castle.

Kilkenny Castle: 

The grounds of the castle are now a great park. There’s also a small little cemetery and right outside of the cemetery fence was this little marker:

We continued from Kilkenny to Kinsale which is a small coastal village. It’s known as the gourmet food center of Ireland.We stayed at this great B&B called Tierney’s Guesthouse. Our room was the window right in the center:

Like many Irish towns, Kinsale has medieval roots and you can still see that in it’s tiny narrow streets.

We decided to go on a walk to this big fort…. we never made it but we did see some fun things along the way: 

Low tide: 

Well, that brings us almost to the end… check back soon for our final goodbyes.

New Ireland blog location

I’ve decided to create an all Ireland blog rather than use my normal photoblog. So for updated info on our WWOOF trip to Ireland, check out:


Go right now!



Update: Right now it’s 7:30 p.m. on Sept 8. We just finished our first day of work on the farm. Pictures of that to come but I have a post I’ve written and some photos of our stopover in Boston, so that first. I had a few days without internet but should be posting more regularly from now on.

Boston: Sept 7

After a year of planning and many more years of dreaming, I am finally sitting in an airport waiting for a plane to take us to Ireland. What a surreal feeling!

For those of you who don’t know the back story, here’s a quick preview of what’s to come and how it came to be.

In my freshman year of college I met a girl who had worked on an organic farm in Japan through a program call WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms). I immediately thought it sounded incredible and decided then and there that I would WWOOF one day.

Basically, WWOOF is an international organization that connects organic farm hosts with eager volunteer workers. All room and board is provided in exchange for work on the farm. Not only is it an excellent way to travel cheaply but you also get the life changing opportunity to live with and learn from someone from a completely different culture than your own.

While I’ve had the idea to WWOOF for a while, it became real about a year ago when my boyfriend Jacob and I decided we should go together. About six months later we were choosing hosts and buying plane tickets. And now we sit waiting for the plane to arrive.

During our WWOOF adventure we will be in Ireland for three months spending a month and a half at each farm. Our first destination is in Powers Cross in County Galway and the second farm is in Glensallagh in County Cork. I’ll go more into farm details later.

Yesterday, we flew out of Seatac airport on a red eye flight to Boston. Once there, we had a 12 hr layover so we hopped on the subway and spent a few hours exploring historic downtown, walking through old graveyards and having lunch at a great place in Little Italy in the North End.

What struck me was how relatively young our country is compared to the rest of the world. Pretty soon we will be visiting castles and ancient graveyards!

Anyway, our flight to Shannon leaves at 7:30 p.m. so we have a few more hours to kill. We’re spending the time catching up on some Z’s. Currently, Jacob is curled up on three seats next to me snoring.

Pretty soon we will be en route to new experiences and three months of a new life.

Bye, bye PNW. For now.

Other quick travel anecdotes:

-Boston’s weather was muggy and wet from tropical storm Lee.

– We met a couple at the Seattle airport who were also on their way to Boston and would then be heading to Ireland after a few days. We met them at the airport bar. They’ve been to Ireland a lot and were really excited for us. They plan on following the blog.

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Here are some photos from Boston including one of the oldest graveyards and Jacob and me having lunch in Little Italy. The statue in the photos is actually of Irish immigrants who flocked to Boston and lived in squalid conditions or were shipped back to their country to starve during the Irish potato famine.

Jake the Alligator Man’s 4th annual 75th birthday

This past weekend I got to take a quick break from reality and photograph Jake the Alligator Man’s 4th annual 75th birthday. For those of you not in the know, Jake is a respected attraction here in Long Beach who has garnered world wide attention. Each year he is honored with a birthday celebration and also, a pin-up contest to pick his new bride. Some of my best images for the paper are posted here: 


Damian shot his photos with the instagram ap on his phone which I think added a really cool effect. His photos are included in that slideshow.

Here are a few extras if you need an even bigger bride of Jake fix. 

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Angela and Jeff Barrett

About a month ago, I got the chance to photograph my third wedding and it happened to be the wedding of one of my oldest friends. It was a total blast and a very beautiful.  I’m not completely done with editing so there will be a few more to come. The wedding was held at the Little Church in Portland, Oregon.


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A Long Beach 4th of July

I think growing up at the beach has given me a unique appreciation for the 4th of July. Each year, my parents and I go down to the beach, usually with our close friends Sonya and Ali and some other tag alongs, and we build a wind break. Then we build a fire. Then we drink. And then finally, we blow of some fireworks. It’s one of my favorite family traditions and one that I hope to never miss out on.

This year, I also covered the Ocean Park Old Fashioned 4th of July Parade. In all my years at the beach, I think this was the best 4th parade yet. The streets were completely lined with people and the parade itself was filled with great entries.

If you’ve never gotten to experience a beachy 4th, I would highly recommend it. Nothing beats sand between your toes while watching some beautiful fireworks. Maybe my photos will convince you.

Also, here’s a link to some of my photos that were published along Damian’s in the Chinook Observer. http://movies.dailyastorian.biz/observer/july42011/

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Catching up with technology

One thing I’ve realized since getting into the photography scene, photographs take up a ton of memory on your computer. I’ve reached maximum capacity. While I back everything up and try to delete stuff off of my main computer regularly, I’ve fallen behind lately. I have so many photos that I haven’t done a single thing with and it makes me feel bad… So, I’m going to start posting old photos here so that they can see the light of day before being tossed onto the external hard drive.

Also, I can’t believe it but I graduate in 1.5 months! Once the magazine goes to print and I’m all finished with undergrad I’ve decided I will devote much more time to blogging and keeping my sites fresh and updated, especially when I head to Ireland in September.

But without further ado, Here a few shots from a gorgeous summer sunset at North Head Lighthouse last July.

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