Forty Acres of Heaven

The City of Redmond is best known as the home of Microsoft and Nintendo of America. However, for us dog lovers — it’s best known for the “Doggy Disneyland” in Marymoor Park. The park contains over six hundred acres of recreational activities, rare amenities, and culturally enriching events. And forty acres were developed into one of the largest off-leash dog park in the country.

This is where dogs can finally be free to be dogs: they can roam freely, run wild, play balls, swim, socialize and sniff endless butts.

The park is open to all breeds and sizes. However, some smaller dogs might feel intimidated by the larger size dogs. Though, this dachshund seem very sure of himself against the giant, looking down on him.

Words of caution… the park is not fenced. So, if you are unable to keep your furry kids under control with verbal commends, you will find yourself chasing after them or worst — they disappear. Just because it’s a leash free park, you still need to keep an eye on them and have them under control. Also, don’t bring your furry kids if you know they can’t play nice with others. Other than that, the park is forty acres of heaven for your furry kids.

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The Dam Road Trip

I’ve wanted to take pictures of the eagle migration for the last couple of weekends but the weather has not been very cooperative. Finally there was a break in the weather yesterday and off we went on my eagle-shooting quest. Unfortunately, when we got there — not a single eagle to be seen. It looks like I’ve missed the migration. 😦  Oh well, there is always next year. Besides, we were driving on one of the most beautiful scenic roads in America — the North Cascades Highway. It offers an amazing display of enormous mountain peaks, lakes and dams along the way. Since the weather was so beautiful, we decided to do a dam road trip instead.

The highway is also a part of the Cascade Loop, a 400-mile driving tour through the cascades. Although, we knew we weren’t going to do the loop because part of the highway is closed during winter. We thought we would drive the distance to see the three dams: Gorge Dam, Diablo Dam, and Ross Dam.

The first dam we came to is the Gorge Dam. This dam is the smallest of the three.

After you pass the Gorge Dam, the next stop is the Diablo Dam and the amazing look-out point. Words cannot even begin to describe this view — you will see the surrounding Cascades, wild-life, Diablo Lake, and more. I was still hoping to see an eagle or two but     no luck.

While I tried my best to capture the beauty of the place, it was just too much for the camera. This is one of those places that you have to experience it in person to get a better sense of its true majestic beauty.

Though I wanted to explore the area a little more, unfortunately, the temperature was freezing cold and very windy. It wasn’t easy to hold the camera steady when my hands were shaking. After taking only a dozen shots, my fingers were numb. We continued on to the next dam, which is the Ross Dam.

A few miles after the Diablo Dam outlook, there were snow on the road and got thicker as we head up higher. It was a good thing, the SUV has four-wheel drive. We were able to continue up the hill without any problem and kept driving until we saw the sign.

We didn’t get to see the Ross Dam but the furry kids had a great time playing in the snow.

Out And About

After weeks of rainy weather, we finally got a break yesterday — what a gorgeous sunny day. We took advantage of it and went on a road trip with our restless furry kids. Without a specific destination in mind, we decided to take the Interstate 90 — also known as the Snoqualmie Pass in Washington State. It’s a very beautiful scenic drive that cuts through the Cascade Mountains. The Interstate 90 eventually ends somewhere in the State of Massachusetts.

After about 45 minutes drive, we ended up at Snoqualmie Pass Summit Ski Lodge.

The furry kids went nuts over the snow, especially Evie. It was fun watching her hop around like a snow bunny in the deep snow.

She had so much fun that when it was time to go; she refused to get in the car and had to be carried. Hmm… sure reminds me of when my boys were little kids.

Global Warming… Burr…

In the 20 years of living in the Pacific Northwest, this has to be the earliest snow fall I can remember. I sure hope this isn’t the sign of a snowy winter ahead…

Puppy Eyes

It’s Raining… It’s Pouring

Today’s Daily Shoot assignment: Illustrate the local weather.

Here is Sarah, singing her rainy day blues.  It’s raining… it’s pouring… my day is boring… I’m stuck inside, playing hide from these two drooling canines. Meow…

Prime Time – Sibling Rivalry

For the last couple of months, I’ve read blogs and seeing impressive images about the 50mm prime lens and its benefits. Well… I finally took the plunge and bought one. So far it’s been  an adjustment using a fixed lens vs. a telephoto lens; habits are hard to change. I find myself moving back and forth, side to side often; feeling like I was doing the square dance. However, I do enjoy the challenge and like to see how far I can push the limit of this lens. The first thing I noticed were the effect the f/1.8 aperture  has on the exposure of the photos; though getting a sharp image were not as easy as I thought. Well… you know the old saying, “practice makes perfect…” 

I took these pictures of my “furry kids” fighting for their place in the pack.  Since the sun was setting, I kept the aperture at f/1.8 and the ISO at 200 for all the shots. From the pictures, it looks like Max is being vicious and rough but actually he was very gentle.Like all sibling relationships; the never-ending fights,  jealousy moments, and attention seeking tricks. Max, being the gentle big brother has put up a lot with little Evie since her arrival a month ago. However, he finally had enough… and decided to put Evie in her place.

“I’m sorry brother… I love you…”Yup! She maybe super cute and get all the attention but I am still the top dog!