Oh hai! Allow me to introduce myself.

I just realized I haven’t posted in a month and it’s not that I’m offended by my own laziness, it’s that I can’t believe a whole month has gone by and I kind of didn’t notice. That’s summer for you.

Given the short season, I’ve been taking every opportunity I can to enjoy summer. For nearly the entire month of August, I traveled to visit faraway friends, had sleepovers with my girlfriends and their kiddos, took the dog hiking all over the place, went swimming in lakes, and even took a trip to the coast in a ’76 VW van, which broke down and had to be push-started about 10 times in two days. (I honestly couldn’t even believe that a vehicle could just magically START from a few people pushing it. Now I want one.) As you can imagine, every time we parked, we were sure to locate a desolate street with a slight downhill slope and a good 20 or 30 feet of clear space ahead of us. The great thing about being able to push-start one of those things is that it didn’t cut into our shopping time by much.

Why all this blathering? I am going to introduce myself. Cross the jump if you dare!

This may not seem like a big deal to you but after blogging anonymously for a year, it’s honestly kind of weird. Without further ado, my name is Nicole, I’m 28, and I live in Bend, Oregon. Bend is a town of about 80,000, nearly smack-dab in the middle of Oregon. Most people think of Oregon as being rainy and lush and green, but the opposite is mostly true; only the western third of the state is actually wet and green. The other two-thirds of the state exists in the rainshadow of the Cascade Mountains, part of an area known as the Great Basin or Interior West. It’s the kind of West where tumbleweeds roll by and everything catches on fire around August. Our third of the state is often called the “High Desert,” but this is a total misnomer. We get about 14 inches of precip a year, and to be a real desert, you have to get 10 inches or less. We’re more of a steppe, dominated by sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) and Western Juniper.

This is me all gussied up. (Doesn’t happen often. Only at weddings, funerals, and.. well, that’s about it.) 

This is me with an eagle.

This is me in a tree.

So hi! It’s nice to “meet” you. :) Central Oregon is awesome this time of year and I’m taking some of my excess energy to put together an Etsy shop. I love to craft, and I’m determined to supplement my income with some of the things I make. Coming soon will be coloring books, embroidery, nature art, and who-knows-what-else. I’ll keep you updated. In the meantime I’m trying to develop a logo and WOW, it’s hard work! Shout out to all you graphic artists out there. I’ve got no fancy programs so I’ve been struggling to choose the perfect fonts, put them into a word doc or powerpoint, and then I’ll figure out something logo-ish from there.

For those of you unfamiliar with Etsy, it’s basically an online mall of individual shops that are only permitted to sell three things: handmade goods, vintage goods, or supplies for handmade goods. It’s a great way to support artists and find goods that are made in the USA (or not; my favorite pair of earrings came from an awesome shop in Turkey), completely unique, and made with a lot of love.

Thanks to all of you who have been sticking with me through the strange time of my life being blown wide open while I attempt to reassemble the pieces into something even more awesome than what it was before. Love to you all!


Posted on September 15, 2011, in The Roaming Naturalist and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Aha, there you are! Pleased to meetcha! Oh yeah, the pros and cons of being between jobs… Etsy sounds like a good idea (I have 3 different jobs myself, earning a little $ here, a little more there…) Best of luck with it.

    • Hi Patricia! I sure hope Etsy takes off, we’ll see! First I have to stop dreaming about it and get in the studio to produce some fun stuff. It’s a new day! Glad you’re still keeping an eye on my blog! :)


  2. Bravo, Nicole!, for being brave and talented; for surviving the push-start vehicle experience (been there, done that); for taking chances in life, art, career; for sharing your words. I discovered your (old) blog while searching for plant identification. I stumbled on your site which I found so refreshing and real. I will continue to follow it and tell others I know who enjoy the planet the way you do. Keep it up! janet in nc

  3. Nicole,

    Wow…you do clean-up nicely! Hey, I miss you at the “not to be mentioned” ex-employer. I am glad to hear you are doing well and I hope you are surviving fine. I have wanted to send you links to all the bird pics I have added over the summer but I don’t have your email address.

    Take care,


    • Hi Tom, thanks for the compliment ;) I don’t do too shabby when I’m not covered in owl poop! I sure miss you too and all the other volunteers/staff – please give them my love and hellos! I will send you my email address!


  4. Hi Nicole! Very nice to meet you! I love reading your blog. ~ Kristi

  5. Great to here that you’re well, Nicole…(I still almost wrote theroamingnaturalist)! Sounds like a lovely and enriching summer you’ve had, and an inspired start to a new and creative life. Wishing you all the best from over here, and looking forward to your insightful writing whenever it might appear. Until then, happy roaming…it’s a pleasure to meet you!


  6. Just stumbled onto your blog because you were next to me in tonight’s Nature Blog Network rankings…… very cool blog & I really like your spirit and sense of humor! Cheers from here in North Texas! I hope your employment picture is looking up as well!


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