Blackberry Part…oh heck it’s Festival Time!

The weekend of August 16th-18th marks the start of the 25th annual Sutherlin Blackberry Festival. I am so happy to experience this event. Last year we had moved up here one week after the festival. While I did not compete this year, just you wait till next year!

This is a wonderful event. There are numerous booths where you can browse and shop for all sorts of fun things. But before we can get started on that, let’s bring in our flag honor guard.

Representing all Branches

Representing all Branches

I am constantly amazed at how seeing our flag fly makes me feel so proud.

Respecting the Flag

Respecting the Flag

Yep, very proud to be an American. A young lady, Alexandra,  sang the National Anthem and just nailed it. She was 11 years old. So wish I could have gotten her picture.

Come on! Let’s go to the festival.

There are booths set up all over offering food items, clothing, makeup, jewelery, hand crafted items, pet items you name it. One thing I bought that I now love are bowl pot holders for your microwave. I often times heat up soup or a bowl of oatmeal and have to reach in and grab that darn bowl that is hotter than lava hot freshly spewed from a volcano. Well now all I do is put my bowl on my holder and the put it in the micro.

What a neat idea. A bowl holder for the Microwave.

What a neat idea. A bowl holder for the Microwave.Bowl holder with a bowl.Bowl holder with a bowl.

One of the neatest things is the raffle for a car and another for a motorcycle.

2006 Harley Sportster

2006 Harley Sportster

The winner of the motorcycle was Frank Harper of Texas (long time Sutherlin Resident).

1972 Ford Mustang Mach 1

1972 Ford Mustang Mach 1

The winner of the car was Harold Wells of Oakland.

I’m going to do the next set of pictures a bit bigger since they are in a collage form. I didn’t want to make you have to scroll though for days.

Face Painting

Face Painting

These kids were so proud of the art done on their faces. It was just a joy to take their pictures!

Junior Boot Camp with The Body Shop Total Fitness

Junior Boot Camp with The Body Shop Total Fitness

I just love the fact that the gym here in town, The Body Shop Total Fitness, gets so involved in promoting kids to get up and exercise! Well done Terry and Dianna Brock.

A ride for everyone

A ride for everyone

Yes that is a gun holster in the middle picture. Some really nice rides were on display.

Old is always better

Old is always better

There were nicer “old cars” here than I ever saw at Route 66! Just gorgeous vehicles!

Let's Eat!

Let’s Eat!

And of course there’s the food! If you were hungry and couldn’t find something to eat here I would have been shocked. Bad thing is to walk by these taking pictures realizing you forgot to eat lunch. Let’s just say I got to taste a lot of different things. Folks are pretty friendly around here.

And the winner is...

And the winner is…

For the cooking contest which included (but not limited to) – cookies, pies, cobblers, candies, jams/jellies, sauces and savory dishes. Rhonda Seekins of Sutherlin who took home 5 ribbons – three 1st place and two 2nd place! Wow nice job!

There was also a chili cook off. Now the only thing that I thought was ‘different’ were the categories – Men, Women and Texas Style. I didn’t know men cook chili different than women do. I think I would have done men and women together, made a category for junior division (15 and under), kept Texas style (no beans) and had another category for say white chili’s, chili verde etc.

2 winners from each category

2 winners from each category

What a great event this is! If you are ever planning to come up to Sutherlin, do make sure to time during the festival. At night there are bands, dancing and more food. Also you can tour some the best wineries Oregon has to offer!


Arts and Crafts Day…

I remember as a child being so excited about the days at school when we were going to do arts and crafts.

Finger painting with all the primary colors (and which probably contained lead), gluing all those popsicle sticks together in shapes of buildings, and who can forget the “was it an ashtray, pencil holder, weak pumping heart made of clay” figurine?

Well I decided that since I have more time I’d channel my inner child and begin my own arts and crafts. I remember as a kid we didn’t care if we got dirty, or even ate the glue in which we formed our creations. Now we carefully gather all our items, lay down the all powerful newspaper to protect our tables and don the apron to keep our clothes tidy.

So lets gather our items – Here we have old mayonnaise jars, Mod Podge, water, food coloring and a small paint brush. Before I forget, go over and turn your oven on to about 200-225. If you have one of those fancy convection ovens be sure to turn the convection fan off. Now where were we…oh the items.

Items needed

The mixture I used here was 4 tablespoons of Mod Podge, 1 1/2 tablespoons of water and 15-20 drops of standard green food coloring.

Mod Podge

Mix the Mod Podge, water and food coloring together in a paper bowl or glass bowl.

Colored Mod Podge

Be sure to mix it very well to get even coloring.

Coat the jars

Once it’s all mixed up pour the entire contents into a jar. Slowly turn the jar to get it all even coated. Then very slowly pour the contents into the next jar and slowly turn the jar to get the entire rim. Let it drain for a bit to get as much excess as you can out. This mixture will do 4 large jars and it’s easy to work with.

Bake Upside Down

Put the jars upside down onto a cookie sheet covered with either wax paper or parchment paper. Double it up because it will soak through. But again clean up is pretty easy as it’s all water soluble. Let them bake about 5-7 minutes then flip them over.

Turn them over.

You can remove the cookie sheet and let the jars continue to bake right on the rack. (Do excuse my pizza stone, I leave it in my oven all the time as it gets quite a work out with pizza’s and hearth breads…but more on that for another post) Let them continue to bake for another 30 minutes.


Your jars will come out all shiny and translucent. Here are my green jars and a couple of light blue jars I did earlier. If you want lighter colors use less food coloring. For extremely bold, use more. It’s all up to you.

Finished Touches

Now you can use them for all sorts of things. Here I just added some twine and silk flowers. The small blue jar will hold q-tips for my guest bathroom. You can put tea candles in them for great patio lighting for bbq’s. Just remember not to fill them water or you’ll undo all your work.

Well that’s it for now.  Lets see where my next inspiration takes me.