Leach Botanical Gardens/The Grotto

As you might recall, last week I had some friends visiting during the brutal Portland heat wave.  To stay cool we took some morning outings to shady higher elevation spots including Leach Botanical Gardens in SE Portland and The Grotto in NE.  The gardens were pretty, though not many flowers blooming...


There were some birds around, mostly chickadees and hummingbirds zipping around, but also some noisy Red-breasted Nuthatches...


Levi's favorite thing in the gardens was this big dinosaur:


Or maybe it was the stick he found later on.  Who knows.  Another morning we headed to the Grotto.  Let me say that I am not a religious person, but this Catholic sanctuary is so bizarre that I have dragged many a friend up the elevator to the gardens there.  Plus there's a sweet view. 


There were birds there too... Steller's Jays were the most conspicuous...


There's a small pond with a mini-waterfall in the gardens that managed to attract a Spotted Sandpiper- a remarkably spotted one at that.


It was awesome having my friends here for so long.  Now if only I could convince them to move here...

Anyway..  It's my birthday so I must go celebrate... And by celebrate I mean get out of my pajamas and go to work.  It's cool, I celebrated yesterday, and perhaps I will celebrate more after work.  Good times!