Saturday, August 15, 2009


3 Friends outside
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
My friend Lisa graduated from Portland State University with a Master's in Education today (8/15/2009).

The three of us in this picture have been friends for 28 years. Every time one of us has a major life event, such as a graduation, we try to be there. I had a great time watching Lisa get her diploma today!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Federal Building in PDX

This used to be the old post office in Portland and was built in 1915.

I took this on my photowalk yesterday. Our 1.5 mile route took us from Chinatown through the Pearl District, via Union Station. We were stopped at Union Station by a man who was telling us we *had* to get a picture of this old building. You can see why, the architecture is timeless. Unlike the hideous 1964 post office across the street...

You can see the best of my photowalk photos here:

Saturday, June 27, 2009

View from the Cooper Mountain Trail

A brand new nature park opened up today in Aloha, Oregon.

Cooper Mountain Nature Park has three trails. My husband and I walked the Cooper Mountain Trail, which is the longest trail. It was an absolutely gorgeous morning to go for a walk. Of course, the later half of the loop is pretty steep, but it was well worthwhile. Probably took us about an hour, and that was with me stopping every so often to get photos with my new camera lens (18-55mm DX VR lens from Nikon).

Thursday, June 04, 2009

World of Coca-Cola

World of Coca-Cola
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
This is one of my photos from the world of coca-cola in Atlanta, GA. I used the "300 Look" Lightroom preset from Matt Kloskowski (free from - it pops out the red and adds a nice sepia tone to the background.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

All right, since I was asked so nicely, I'm posting my "scrapbook sale ready" items on the blog.

Mostly Stampin' Up rubber stamps, but there are some acrylic stamps and quote books in the mix.

Shipping is USPS Flat Rate Priority Mail rates as listed here (depends on size and amount of stamps):

I'll only accept PayPal. When I accept the saljavascript:void(0)e, I'll give you my PayPal email address.

I'll edit this post as stuff sells, or point to a new post.

Stampin' Up Rubber stamps

Best Bar Codes (set of 4, never used, unmounted) $8
Stamped From the Heart (Set of 4, never used, unmounted) $8
A Light Heart (Set of 7, never used, unmounted) $15
Happy Harmony (Set of 6, never used, unmounted) $10
Tagger's Dozen (Set of 12, never used, unmounted) $10
Holiday Tag Team (Set of 14, never used, unmounted) $10
A Grateful Heart (Set of 6, lightly used, mounted) $8
A Perfect Princess (Set of 7, never used, unmounted) $15
Holiday Happiness (Two Step Stamping, Set of 8, never used, unmounted) $15
Riveting (Set of 8, never used, unmounted) $8
Sketch an Event (Set of 8, never used, unmounted) $15
Stardust (Set of 4, lightly used, mounted) $10

Fontwerks Rubber Stamps (ALL UNMOUNTED, NOT SEPARATED)

Henna (Tia Bennett) $20 (new in package, never used)
Flower Power (Elsie Flannigan, now Elsie Cake) $20 (new in package, never used)

Acrylic Stamps

All My Love (Heidi Swapp, 1 phrase stamp, never used) $2
Crowns (Heidi Swapp, Set of 4 crowns, never used) $5

Heart Smudge (Basic Grey, never used, new in package) $10
Swirlie (Basic Grey, never used, new in package) $10

Journal Stamp (Rusty Pickle, never used, new in package) $10

Friend (7 Gypsies, 97% Complete Stamp, never used, new in package) $10


Quote Unquote, Volume 1, $5
Quote Unquote, Volume 2, $5
Quote Unquote, Volume 3, $5


Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
Prior to the conference in Atlanta, my friend Jackie and I went to the Atlanta Botanical Garden. As soon as I saw this glass on the fountain, I *knew* it was Chihuly glass! It's definitely a center piece.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Cleo looking innocent

Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
Yep, she's got that innocent "I'm lovable and how could you believe anything bad about me" look on her face!

Impromptu photo shoot this morning with all three cats and a sunbeam.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Me at the Atlanta Hard Rock Cafe

My STC friend and colleague, Nathaniel Lim, took this photo of me in front of the window at the Hard Rock Cafe in Atlanta, GA. We were amused - maybe we were so tired from the conference that it was amusing, but nonetheless! :)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Murphy in her sheepskin

This is our oldest cat, Murphy. She's 10 years old.

She loves to sleep in her sheepskin, it's one of her favorite places. She has other sleeping places, but this one is all hers. None of the other cats sleep in this sheepskin.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Tiptoe through the tulips with me

One of our out of town friends went with us to the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm in Woodburn, Oregon. Every year in March and April this farm has a Tulip Festival. We were down that way, checking out Fry's and other stores, when we decided to go there on a whim.

Even though it's near the end of the festival (it was supposed to end today, but they extended it a week), there were still some awesome blooms.

I took this with my dad's Nikon D50, which he graciously loaned me to go to the STC conference in Atlanta. His D50 is much much lighter than my D100, and both cameras use the same batteries and chargers. His camera will make it easy to take photos without worrying about the weight of the camera with my shoulder recovery.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

40 is the new 30!

I can't believe I'm 40. I remember when I was a child and a teenager, 40 seemed SO FAR AWAY and *old*!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Stub Stewart State Park

Today my husband and I went to Stub Stewart State Park in Buxton, Oregon. It's about 27 miles away, but still in the same county... :)

It's Oregon's newest state park, and just opened sometime in the last two years.

I didn't take a lot of pictures, but I did get a few. It was hard holding the camera and pressing the button on the camera with the same hand. You don't realize how much you rely on two hands to use a camera, until you can't! :) Good thing for hand size point and shoot cameras.

Isn't it gorgeous?

Monday, March 30, 2009

Two jobs just got posted today - 1 contract position, 1 direct hire position.

Wish me luck - I'm submitting my resume for both tomorrow (after reviewing and customizing for the position).

Oh yes, I follow up with my orthopedic specialist tomorrow (Tuesday) at 1:30 p.m. - I assume the stitches are coming out, and a prescription for physical therapy is forthcoming. I may still have the sling, and I'm not sure if I'll be cleared to drive yet.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

One week and counting. I still have iodine and Sharpie marks on my shoulder. Any ideas for removal?

The tape over the incisions came off yesterday - it looks like 2 stitches per hole (I have 3 holes).

Monday, March 23, 2009

Doing well recovering from surgery!

I've done a lot of sleeping, a lot of reading, and a lot of TV watching.

I see the doctor next Tuesday, and hopefully will be clear to drive after that. Because I had the best case scenario surgery (no repairs to bicep tendon), I may not be in the sling past the doctor's visit. That would be great!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Sneaking on one handed typing.....

Good news. No repair required, so I should be out of the sling in two weeks.

I had an asthma attack after surgery...they said it is not uncommon with the nerve block to feel short of I had a trach tube down my throat.

I lost my voice too...and have a hard time speaking more than few words without being short of breath.

Just updating you...I'll be back in a few days.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

One week to go until surgery!

And it's going to be a long week...the surgical center told me yesterday that I cannot take ibuprofen for one week before surgery. Yep, you guessed it, that's my pain relief/anti-inflammatory of choice. I can take Tylenol, but Tylenol does not work for me. Hasn't since I was a teenager. I guess I'll try though, depending on how bad the pain level gets in the next 7 days!

Still working my way down a fairly lengthy list of things I want to do while I still have two hands to type with. :)

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The surgery date has been set. Wednesday, March 18. It will be a day surgery.

I'll be wearing this lovely, fashionable sling for 5-6 weeks after the surgery:

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

A surgery date is one step closer to reality.

I called the doctor's office today to get an update.

Instead of the doctor's assistant calling me back, I got a call from billing. They wanted to know if I had private insurance outside of the auto insurance. I gave them my information (my husband's insurance is awesome and covers us both) and they will preauthorize my surgery through his insurance too.

I don't understand PIP, but apparently there's a finite amount of money (research shows $15K is minimum in Oregon, apparently). While the insurance company would confirm I still have money available, they wouldn't tell the doctor's office how much.

All this means I'm one step closer to an actual surgery date. And once they preauthorize with my husband's insurance, I"ll be pretty close. I assume that's when they will actually schedule the date.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Brad Paisley

Brad Paisley
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
My husband and I went to the Rose Garden Arena last night (2/27/09) to see Brad Paisley, Dierks Bentley, and Crystal Shawanda in concert. It was a rockin' country concert. Our seats were located right next to the left side catwalk (on the inside), and this photo is at the top of the catwalk, close to the stage. We didn't get home until shortly after midnight!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

MRI results are in!

I had a shoulder MRI on February 16th. I met with the orthopedic specialist on February 23rd (Monday) and it is now official:

Arthroscopic shoulder surgery is required.

Looks like I have the following issues:

  • Seriously inflamed/thickened tendon (not the rotator cuff tendon, another one)
  • Bone spur impinging on the rotator cuff tendon
  • Potential partial tear of the bicep tendon (there's a dark triangle spot where the muscle should be on the MRI picture)
If they have to repair anything inside (instead of just remove), I could be in a sling for up to 6 weeks. With 6 months to full recovery.

If they don't have to repair anything, I'll be in a sling for 1 week, with 3 months to full recovery.

I'm waiting on approval right now, then they will schedule the surgery. It will be on a Wednesday, since that is his surgery day. I'm hoping it will happen on March 4 or 11...too much later than that and I'll still be wearing a sling at the STC conference in Atlanta if they repair anything.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Cat Brain (ADSR #11)

The one question I want to ask my cat Cleo.....

My layout for Challenge #11 of the ADSR contest.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Phew! Survived that phone screen interview!

I think I did well. I feel good about this job opportunity. It's exactly what I want at the salary range I want to be in. And STC involvement is okay! Good thing! I even gave her more information about STC and the STC conference.

I will know by next Wednesday if I make the next round, which is a face to face panel interview with the hiring manager and her team.

Now to be calm and not stressed for the next week. :)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I got a call from a corporate recruiter today. I talked with her for 20 minutes, and ended up with a phone screen interview with the hiring manager tomorrow afternoon.

*Fingers & toes crossed*

Sunday, January 25, 2009

You're So Cute

You're So Cute
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
My layout for Challenge 6 of the ADSR. My husband says this phrase to me every day... :)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Lost Love

Lost Love
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
My layout for Challenge 5 of the ADSR. See photo on Flickr for journaling text.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
My layout for the 4th challenge of the Amazing Digital Scrapbook Race.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Driving Pet Peeve #1

As many of my local friends and family can attest, I hate driving. I especially hate driving when others don't follow the rules of the road.

My first driving pet peeve concerns drivers who *know* they are in the "turn lane only" lane so they can rush ahead of everyone, and then expect someone to *generously* let them back in before they have to make that turn. Excuse me? Your stupidity (there are signs) or arrogance do not mean *I* have to let you back in just because you put on your turn signal. Make the stupid turn, then turn around and come back. It's not my problem to deal with, and cursing at me and making hand/arm gestures when I won't let you in just makes me laugh. What's that quote?

"Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."

Monday, January 05, 2009

Day 5 of Project 365

I worked out today. 20 training minutes in Wii Fit had me (excuse the imagery) dripping sweat and dog tired. Phew! I'm looking forward to the day I can do 60 minutes, but baby steps first.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Christmas 2008

Christmas 2008
Originally uploaded by Rachel Houghton
Here's a layout I did for the Amazing Digital Scrapbook Race (aka ADSR). This is for the first challenge. There will be a total of 12 challenges through out the next six weeks.

Day 3 of Project 365

My husband was reading quite comfortably in this chair when our cat Willow came up and started meowing. Apparently, she wanted warmth and to share the chair. :)

Friday, January 02, 2009

Day 2 of Project 365

I've joined a group on Flickr that is attempting to do a photo a day for the 2009 year, called "Project 365."

Some folks don't even realize I wear glasses, since I only use them for computers and reading, so I thought it would be interesting to do an arms' length photo of myself wearing them.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

My word for 2009.


Why? I look forward to the opportunities that 2009 is going to bring me - a new job, a new outlook on life, a new project that will stretch my boundaries.