Ignited Road Trip ~ High Desert Escape










Kids at camp.

PH on a business trip.

Me on my knees in my closet tossing baubles, boots and gyspy skirts into a ridiculous pile….going on a girl adventure. I couldn’t think of a better partner for an escape—Elida is fun, spontaneous, pure of heart and makes me laugh. Plus we had a lot of planning we needed to do for our retreat schedule this year.













Smith Rock and a perfectly sunny day…it was a dreamy landscape for taking portraits of each other. We met the sweetest couple from Portland who snapped one of us together. Later they found us at the cafe’ where we lunched…they drove ten miles back just to come eat and talk with the crazy photo girls. It was a highlight. The world becomes so small when you’re looking for good things on the road.

































Next stop: Off ramp to Highway 97…totally random pull-over and a funny spilling out of gear onto the road as we rummaged our way into different outfits. I have to commend our Eastern Oregon friends who drove by—no honks or rude gestures. Good manners demonstrated with smiles and thumbs up…not sure that would be the case at home.


























































Just drop me from a helicopter into the scrub trees in this terrain. I adore it out there…dry…warm..bright…moutains looming in the background in every direction.

I am home.








































I think one of things I love the most about living in the post-40 side of life is that “why not?” pops up again and again. After a family trip in Bend in June, I was picturing a photo escursion out there as I watched the desert zoom by on our way home. The thoughts that “it could be fun” and “let’s find a block of time” were the only requirements for making something happen. It helps to know people in your life that are able to release and just go. Elida is one of those people for me and I adore her for it.






























































































































They say that “Every summer has a story”….I’m enjoying every single minute of this one. It’s about taking back the writing of my own story and relishing every family moment I can pull my to my chest.

Show up.   Explore.   Discover.

All is as it should be.

* * *

We were lucky enough to stay with Elida’s sister’s family while on our adventure. They have the most amazing girls (one is a teen and is missing here)—blond beauties with smarts and talents galore. I fell in love with all four of them as we sat on the grass in their yard talking.  Their aunt was snoozing next to us because I got her up at the BCOD (Blair family acronym butt crack of dawn).




























We went to a horse race outside of their town. The people watching was a “ten” for sure. I was trying to be discreet with my long lens, but was caught a couple of times. Luckily, these folks were smiley and open to having their picture taken.





























































This was a funny…I walked by these girls and said, “Hold up, now! Ladies, let’s have your best princess smiles.” Seriously, anyone passing by me with a crown and a sash is fair game. Too darn cute.




















* * *

The drive home was just as fun, but at the very end I was sad to see our time together end. Our lives with our kids and businesses are very full. Sometimes too full to take a break and see what’s out there. I just have to remember that it doesn’t have to be summer to take on an adventure.

‘Holding on to this as long as I can!

Hoping your summer is full of adventure and family love, lovelies~



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15 Responses to Ignited Road Trip ~ High Desert Escape

  1. Mary Jo Vick says:

    You inspire me! Love it!!! Love the mountains, the gypsy dresses… and the bling! But most assuredly the spirit of your trip. xoxo

  2. Mikal says:

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this!!!

  3. Terry says:

    Nothing like a great girl getaway to lift us up! Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures and thoughts Lara. You always make me smile :)

  4. kimberly says:

    Honestly, you two are such an inspiration for what is possible when we let ourselves go. I love seeing how much fun you had together- now I am even more excited to see you at the end of the month!!!

  5. kolleen says:

    L O V E!!!!

    i need to find an “Elida” that lives close to me!!!!

    i love this post so much … beautiful!


  6. Cat says:

    Wowzers! Yall are living the dream girls…and Lara, that pic of you in the long skirt is just breathtaking!!

  7. Awesome photos! Seeing my hometown and my girls through your lens was so much fun! Your photos highlight the romance all around me. I just need to wake up and see it!

  8. Deana Wolfe says:

    Were you seriously that close to our town, I am just sure Mikal & I could have shown you around! You girls looked like to were having the time of your life and “yes” that is what summer is all about!
    Enjoy the rest of your summer…

  9. pam says:

    SO glad you had such a great time! I love that in the shot of the two guys you can see the outline of where he keeps his “Skol – chew” …that is a sign of an authentic countrified man! I miss you guys…I so need to move 😉 Can’t wait to hear what is in store with all the retreats!

  10. Serena says:

    There is nothing better than seeing two beauties together exploring, playing, being free and scheming up new dreams. Love you both for all that you are and share with the world!

  11. Leeann Moore says:

    Thoroughly loved the post and the tales of you lovely ladies and your summer break in the Great Northwest High Desert! You captured the essence of the county and the people in words and in photos. There is just SoMeThInG about that country up there that I love! Maybe it is the contrast of the pines and the basalt outcroppings among the golden grasses. Maybe it is the cognitive whiplash one gets at the words Oregon and “desert” that breaks long-set connotations. I don’t know, but I do know I love the way you took us along on the trip! Thanks Leeann from Texas– first and last and from Washington State– in the middle years!

  12. Gorgeous photos Lara! I think my favorite is the one of Elida in the quilt. Atleast I am pretty sure that is her. I had to look several times, you guys both look so much alike. You could be sisters. I bet you get that a lot! Seriously, you don’t have any idea how much you inspire me. I would so love to do something like this. Sunday I went out to do a little photo shoot of my little boy and I. I dressed in a ruffled demin dress, bling and boots that I absolutely love. My mother in law was there and honestly, made fun of my outfit. She really hurt my feelings. The pictures turned out good though. I don’t know why people can’t just let others express their own style. I am sure she didn’t mean to hurt my feelings but still it did. I almost didn’t go take the pictures but thought about what you or Melody Ross would do and decided I was doing it for me, not her and did it anyway. Just wanted to thank you for the inspiration!

  13. Elise Braden says:

    How spirited and inspirational! I’m feeling the need for a road trip of discovery ~ thanks for sharing yours with us!!

    Cowgirl in the Sand

  14. Sonnet Gal says:

    You captured your adventure with Lara style! And your comment about living on this side of 40 and saying “Why Not” is so true…I find myself doing things I would have never done even 10 years ago. I’m looking forward to an adventure in October…I’m picking up Kelly on the way! :)

  15. Lori Dee MacKenzie says:

    Ohhh, Lara,
    Thanks so much for the fab pictures of the Crooked River round-up, Smith rocks and all…. I am an Oregon girl (living in Arlington, Wa.), and those pictures brought back memories of the summers spent in Prineville and Central Oregon. Oh, how I miss it! Also I love the skirts and boots y’all had on! Thanks so much! Beautiful! Lori

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