Eating up tulips

Fields of tulips at the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm in Woodburn, Oregon.

Tulips as soul food, I mean. We didn’t actually eat any of them.

This week started out on a down note. It’s getting a little warmer, but it was raining day after day and even though I did go do some yardwork in the rain, it’s just not inspiring to pull weeds and rake in the rain. Then I lost one of my Hussies on Monday, probably to a raccoon. I found her dead inside the chicken house and had to dispose of her body.

Tara said they would be coming to visit me on their one day off from work. I found out later that they were hoping to cheer me up. Awww. What a good kid.

Tara showed up late Tuesday night, after closing up at work where they live in Corvallis. We hugged and then told each other good night. Wednesday morning the sun came out! Tara requested Mom’s Best Baking Powder Biscuits in the World, and while we ate we decided to go to the tulip farm. I haven’t been there for years. Tara and their friends have tried multiple times in the last couple years, and keep showing up at the farm when it’s past tulip season or too early for tulips. In fact, Tara has already been there this year, but no tulips had bloomed yet.

Tara crouches carefully in a bare patch of dirt to get a close up photo without crushing any of the flowers.
At the top left, you can see a raised platform built for visitors to get a better look at the fields.
This is the view from the raised platform.

I needed the sunshine and bright colours to lighten my mood, and Tara needed to enjoy a rare day off from work and school, to simply play for awhile and not be responsible.

Our timing was good because it’s still within the main dates of the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm‘s 35th annual Tulip Festival. Each year the tulips are grown in a different portion of the farm, to ensure soil health. Since Tara had recently visited, they knew exactly where to go to find the tulips this year. In minutes of arrival, we were surrounded by tulips and eating them up.

My camera was hungry for all the colour too, and gulped it up out of proportion. I am a camera novice, so I don’t know what happened, but the colours in some of my photos are so saturated I’m afraid they’re going to start dripping.

So much colour. No editing here….just a lens gulping up colour.
A faded Mt. Hood in the distance behind the Hazelnut trees.

Tara and I had a lot of fun wandering through the fields of tulips and talking. We have a great relationship and even though we just spent a week together in Ireland, we already had lots of things to talk about again. I feel so fortunate to have this great kid who trusts me and shares with me. I asked T to take photos of me in the tulips because I realized in a whole week in Ireland, I had not asked them to take any photos of me. I’m the one always carrying the camera, so I need to remember to ask others to take my picture.

Me, warm enough to take off my sweater. Yay for sun!
Tara said, “Take off your sunglasses!”
Each field demonstrates tulips that are on sale from the farm’s flower catalog. Here is a popular choice for buyers: mixed tulip bulbs in a single bag.
Acres of blooming tulips.
I liked how these were all leaning toward the sun.

There is no picking area that I am aware of at this farm. The company sells bulbs from a catalog. Many people wander the fields in order to choose what to buy from the catalog.

At the back of the fields is an orchard of Hazelnut trees, one of Oregon’s most famous exports. It’s not yet hazelnut season, but the trees offer a nice backdrop to the tulips.

Hazelnut orchard at the back of the farm.
A tractor prepares a field nearby.
We were allowed to stand and look, but not to enter the orchard.

Also at the back of the fields, a lone man sat monitoring a couple of kites flying. He had a grey tiger shaped kite, and a giant purple shark kite. Tara said it looked like an animated character from a children’s movie, I can’t remember which one. I thought it looked ridiculous, and was irritated that I had to crop out an enormous purple cartoon whale shark from my photos.

….but I took one photo of it to show you what I mean.

The animated kite fit with the rest of the place though, which is entirely too corny for my taste. I refused to take any photos of the fake windmill, fake wooden shoe workshops, and all the carnival tents selling elephant ears and cotton candy. The place is set up mostly for kid entertainment, with rides and playgrounds and stuff that has nothing to do with tulips. I did like the game where kids place little rubber duckies into metal troughs and then rapidly pump water from old timey well pumps to flush the duckies to the other end of the trough and race each other. I do recall that when Tara was in middle school, we spent a lot more time in the carnival section though….so I should stop being so judgy.

The view as we headed back to the carnival section to find some food and wine.

One of the photos I took was of a bright red tulip shining her best self in a field of undisciplined yellow tulips bending every which way. I made a meme out of it.

20 thoughts on “Eating up tulips

  1. glad you did not eat any of them for real – ha – and that made me laugh –
    and so much to like here – but the ending photo has many analogies coming to my mind – and I like how you made it into “live your own life”
    and many times i feel more like the yellow – relaxed and unfolding in the essence of life – but then there are the red days – the strong – tall and proud and very aligned – and so your meme was perfect – live your own life which is different at different times

    1. I LOVE the way you added to the meaning of the meme! I was only thinking of one perspective, but you are right, there are more meanings that could be assigned there and it’s true that you can pick your own path each day. In fact, we all do. Thank you so much. ❀

      1. my pleasure – and you really captured an amazing photo there – whew – and the whole post is a bit of joy (tulips and trips can do this eh?)

  2. I’m behind again. The kids left Friday and I’m still catching up on so many things. We did not go there this year but did the last 3. I don’t buy tulip bulbs because they only bloom once and are gone. But I love the colors of them and they make you so happy to see so many all at once. So glad you and Tara got to see them together. Such happy photos. πŸ˜‰

    1. Omigosh! I missed the visit and I was going to offer my services. Well, I’ll come by and offer them a different day then. I love you and miss you. Yes, it was a great day with Tara. I’m glad it’s so easy for us to enjoy things together.

  3. Eeeee, what a wonderful outing! That photo of you among the tulips – both of them, but especially the one without the glasses as Tara rightly said – is gorgeous!!! And the one you made into the meme as well. I’d notice that, photograph that and be as happy for it as you are. Such an amazing variety of blossoms. It’s interesting how the first half of this post seems so idyllic but then comes the news about all the fake things. πŸ˜€ And the shark! Hihih, judgy! I don’t know, I think it wouldn’t bother me so much. The other things that you mention are worse. But all in all, gorgeous and glorious! ❀

    1. Ha ha!! Yes, I can be judgy. But I do remember appreciating all the activities when I had a child who wanted to play on them.

      It was a wonderful outing, better because I was with Tara. And thanks for the compliments. ❀

    1. There were so many kinds of tulips! And you know, your comment reminds me that I didn’t even think to try and get photographs of the different kinds. That would have been a nice touch. I’ll do that next year. πŸ™‚

      1. Sad to say, I haven’t been there yet. Though I recall many states in the US have preserved large extents of nature, national parks. I just didn’t know about the tulips. Quite lovely.

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