Love of vintage French comes alive through local collaboration.


Three local women have combined their unique talents to create a limited edition book of all things vintage French. Bremerton’s own Wendy Dreaney, who’s career and wanderlust has taken her all over the world, was approached by Liz Le Dorze, the owner of Hattie Rose, (which specializes in beautiful French pieces) to showcase her fine art prints of French flea markets. After further discussion, Liz encouraged Wendy to create something special, a book, to showcase the fine art prints of the many flea markets that Wendy had explored all over France. Hattie Rose is filled with unique pieces, hand selected with a discerning designer eye and complimenting line of Komedal Cloth textiles. This was a perfect fit.

Now inspired, Wendy was seeing how this book could come together. She reached out to Marit Bockelie, owner of The Bremerton Letterpress Company to help bring this idea to life. Wendy knew she wanted the end sheets of the book to mimick the vintage French linens, like the ones she has all over her home, however, she couldn’t find paper that looked like it. She reached out to illustrator Toni Santos, of Baby Buddha Studio, who then hand painted all of the end sheets for the book. This trio of incredible talent has now brought this limited edition book to life. There will be only 20 books for sale.

These very special books, along with Wendy’s fine art prints,  will be available starting November 4th,  from 6pm to 8pm , at Hattie Rose, located on Winslow Way, Bainbridge. They will also be available at The Bremerton Letterpress Company on Pacific Ave in downtown Bremerton.  This is the first of what they hope will be at least 3 volumes of handmade books created in collaboration between Wendy Dreaney Photography , The Bremerton Letterpress Company and Baby Buddha Studio.

For more information please visit these websites.





Macklemore & Ryan Lewis choose Bremerton for the “camping trip” tour.


It’s not too often we have a big show in our small town, last night Mackelmore and Ryan Lewis performed to a sold out audience at our own Admiral Theatre.  After completing a  long summer tour that included the US, Canada, Norway, Finland & Australia, the two came back home to perform in their home state at small venues in quiet little towns like ours.

The two are both Washington natives, Macklemore from Seattle and Lewis from Spokane.  Along with being passionate performers, they share a passion for outreach, activism and charity.   The  have supported the 30/30 project, Free the children and the One campaign to name just a few.

When the news got out in our small town that this show was coming and sold out in minutes, it was the talk of the town.  For some, volunteering to help at the Admiral was the only way to experience the show.

They were fun, energetic, kind to their fans and put on an incredible performance.  We hope they will be back again, Bremerton loved it!

For the photo story, see Eric Morgensens photos on the Admiral’s Facebook page

Photo story

#macklemore  #thecampingtrip  #ryanlewis  #theadmiraltheatre #bremerton






Waterfront Living in Bremerton


Bremerton is lucky, it has so much front footage of waterfront with channels, inlets and bays.  Living here with a view of our waterfront is a real treat, you see wildlife, kayakers, the early morning water skier, and the boats heading into Oyster bay to raft up for the hot days of summer.

If you live along the shores of Ostrich Bay or Oyster Bay , it is very social.   I attended “Beach Friday” an open house of sorts,  where a local gal hosts her friends and friends of friends to her beach in the summer.  You see lots of multi-colored beach chairs lined up, floaty’s and boats anchored about.   Last night I was picked up by a neighbor for an evening boat ride which resulted in us anchoring at “beach Friday” for a while. This night on the beach included ladies in the colorful beach chairs,  folks standing in the water talking, several boats tied up, a family arriving by kayak, a couple dogs….there was a lot of fun chatter, laughter and warmth as the sun set, it could not have been more perfect.

Oyster Bay has its own vibe and attracts boaters and skiers from all around.    On any summer day there will be  boats of all sizes rafted together, the occasional motor yacht anchored and of course,  water skiers.  You’ll see many families out pulling their kids on inter tubes,   fun islands afloat and more.   The boaters are friendly , they all wave to each other and are there to share a beer or tow you home if you’ve run out of gas.

Being on a boat in Bremerton also gives you the opportunity to tie up to a local dock  and find a bite to eat.  There are a couple choices now.  Hands down the local favorite is the Boat Shed,  its the only waterfront restaurant with its own dock.  Sitting on that deck, on a hot summer night watching the sunset over the Olympics cannot be beat.  My personal favorite to eat there is the steamed clams with lots of bread with a glass of “buttery oaky” Chardonnay.  With the Bremerton Marina now an easy tie up, you can walk up to Anthony’s or several of the small eateries downtown.

Lastly, Bremerton waterfront is really the last “affordable” waterfront around.  Beach cottages and waterfront homes start in the mid 300’s up to high 600’s on average.

#boating #bremertonliving #theboatshed #beachfriday

photo credits to Matt Mason, Danielle Walsh, Jordan Rogers



“Elixir Fixer” your party’s new best friend is coming to Manette.

So….when you are the outgoing creative type , a former chef , with an entrepreneurial spirit who’s been a stay at home dad the last 15 years and ready for your next big move, what do you do?     Well…. if you are Jim Higgins, you create a  “party in a bottle” and get to work.

Since the inception of “Elixir Fixer” Jim has been working non stop to bring his idea to life. He created the product, brought it to our local market, and is now working to distribute it on a large scale…….and that’s all happened like in the last 6 months or so.

The need for a warehouse space drew Jim to Manette , where he is transforming a retail/warehouse space into a beautiful showroom.  The space will have many functions, warehouse, retail and Jim’s office for starters.   The larger scale plan includes creating a place to share and teach …..the craft of cocktails & mocktails, how to plan a super awesome party, private tastings, and in the end be a family friendly place that ultimately brings the community together.

It’s evident that his creative side is on fire right now when you look at the space he’s bringing to life while also launching 3 new flavors to the collection.

What a treat for Bremerton and also for the Manette  business district which is blossoming into a diverse and wonderful little hub of excitement these days.  Jim plans to have his storefront open by month’s end, but in the mean time, he is working tirelessly to bring it to life, stop by and say hello.

Follow his progress on Facebook by clicking here.

#elixirfixer  #cocktail  #manette  #bremertonliving  #party





Students receive over $34,000 in scholarships from Kiwanis Club of Bremerton

For the last 8  years I have been honored to be a part of a committee that selects and interviews candidates for the Bennett Memorial Kiwanis Scholarship.  We had 53 applicants this year.

The Kiwanis –Bennett Memorial Scholarship Fund has provided scholarships for deserving students since 1955. This scholarship is named in memory of a member of the Kiwanis Club of Bremerton, I. Wesley Bennett, and his wife Nellie, who left a large share of their estate for this purpose. Since that initial gift over 60 years ago, other contributions have been received, allowing the fund to provide over $1,060,000 in scholarships .

This years 21 recipients will be our future nurses, surgeons, lawyers,  educators, robotic engineers, biologists, and business majors.  They are our local kids who are from local  schools,  mostly Bremerton and CK.  Many hope to come back and put their skills to work right back in our community.  They will attend OC, Western, Evergreen, UW, Gonzaga, U of Portland, to Hawaiin Pacific, Lincoln and Chapel Hill.   Students had an average GPA of 3.5 or better and logged 300 hours or more of community service……several had accomplished that while also participating in running start.  They were all quite amazing and excited about what lies ahead for them.

Recipients:  Dezerae Hamblin  – OC , Kelsey Cain – CK, UW, Ellie Davis – UW , Cora Newton  – NM, HP , Samantha Luong – WWU, Bryan Freeman – BHS, UW, Joy Clark – CK, UW, Carly Strong – NM, ESC, Sarah Holt – UP,  Rebecca Campbell – UW, Brielle Mathis – SK,OC,  Kevin Nguyen – BHS,UW,  Lydia Caldwell – BHS,WWU, Abe Bartlett – BHS, LU, Jasmine Ford – GU , Tiana Herring – BHS, CHU, Andrea Hjorten – BHS,WWU, Amanda Ford – CK,GU,  Jalena Myers – NK,SU, Michaela Myers – PLU, Clarissa Gold – UV

The local Kiwanis club meets every Thursday for lunch at “The Source” 516 5th St.  next to the Admiral Theatre from 12:30 – 1:20 and has about 30 active members,  You will see us in our red vests this weekend marshaling the Armed Forces Day Parade downtown.



Story time with Bremerton’s own Toni Yuly


I had the pleasure of chatting with Toni Yuly about the completion of her first book series.  The trilogy,  also feature her original artwork inspired by a Japanese coaster that Toni picked up at our local St. Vinney’s.   Early Bird, the first to be released in the series, is an award winning book recognized by the American Library association and was also voted best board book by the New York Library.

Toni is a Seattle native who, like many, made Bremerton her home about 8 years ago.  When I asked her , why Bremerton?  I loved the response. ” I liked the vibe, the quieter pace,  it was cheap, cool and gritty….perfect for an artist”.  I agree!  In fact, she loved her new town so much when she first arrived that she made a series of t-shirts showcasing our notable landmarks such as, McGavin’s, Manette TV and the green hammerhead crane. She said that sometimes she still sees one of her t-shirts being worn at Hi-Lo’s.

Toni is a UW alumni where she studied fine art, she worked  33 years as a King County public librarian, and is now retired from that career to become a full time writer and artist. She also lived a year in Japan as an exchange student during high school, this experience  had a profound influence and has provided much inspiration in her art and life.

Her “torn paper ” art comes to life with her adds of eyes and ears.  This artwork can be found on cards that will be coming soon to the Bremerton Letter Press.

She will be celebrating “kids day” this coming Sunday, May 1, at MOMO,  located in the Japanesetown section of Jackson in Seattle from 1-3.  She will be celebrating kids day with book signings and a reading.

Toni will have two new books coming out next year. The first, the Jelly Bean Tree, stars a blue giraffe and her friends an elephant, wiener dog and a turtle.  The second,  Thank You Bees, a poetic story of gratefulness and connection to your natural surroundings is being released by Candlewick.

For more information on Toni Yuly please refer to the links below.




Comedies by women? You must be joking.


Yesterday I had the opportunity to have coffee with the two women responsible for bringing Broad Humor to Bremerton.  They met in New Zealand of all places.  Marie Weichman,  an Art Professor at Olympic College, was on sabbatical and  Susan deRende, writer/artist/digital nomad, was working as a resident at a film studio.  A conversation started between the two women and an idea was born.

Susan, who is passionate about women in the arts is the founder of Broad Humor, a women centric film festival. The festival, going on its 11th year in LA ,  is extending its reach here, next weekend.  Bremerton can join the ranks of other “host towns” like Rome, Belgium & New York , you know …small towns like ours, for an off-site festival.

This is a thing.  The city & Olympic College immediately got on board to support this coming to our community. The films creators & directors will be here for small panel discussions and net working through this 3 day event.  In addition to the two day film festival, there are author readings, coffee networking , a VIP event, hosted by Manuela Horn and catered by our own Honor Bar.  Tickets are in limited supply and available through Brown Paper Tickets.

Its also worth mentioning, that proceeds of this event will be creating scholarships for women students pursuing a degree in the Arts.

#broadhumor #funnywomen #susanderende #olympiccollege

More Information on the event

Susan’s new book released early for this event is available on Amazon


Kitsap Fresh launches in Bremerton


If you are looking to eat more farm fresh local grown organic foods and support local, the opportunity just became easier for us in Bremerton.  Kitsap Fresh, an online farmers market, hosts a site where you can shop local and support our community farmers and artisans.  The volunteer run program set up at CJ’s Evergreen market last night where you could sample foods and meet venders.  When you place your first order, they ask for a nominal fee to support the organization with varying rates depending on whether you’d like to volunteer time. Once you register, there is a simple drop down menu where you can shop. I believe that the venders post their goods late Thursday night, you may have to act quick.   There is no minimum order.  The following week, it’s delivered to CJ’s Evergreen market for pick up.  Super simple. There are about 28 vendors which include dairy, baked goods, coffee, seafood and more.

When you visit the Kitsap Fresh website, you can click on the links to their vendors.  Here are the links for more information.  You can also find them on Facebook.



Green Mountain Day hike

Living in Bremerton gives you an advantage when it comes to opportunities for local day hikes.  In lieu of the drive up to one of the many trails in the Olympic National forest, we opted the other day to drive out to Green Mountain, about 20 minutes from town.  There are multiple access points, the gold creek trailhead is a great one.  The day we went it happened to be closed due to logging, however you don’t have to let that stop you.  We turned around and parked at the access road about a 1 mile before the trailhead on Lake Tahuya Rd. and just “hiked” the logging road.  While this is a well maintained logging road, once to the top you enjoy some great vistas to the west with the Olympics in full view. My fit-bit reported roughly 6 miles roundtrip and the elevation gave us a rewarding workout.  Once to the top, we found ourselves leaving the road and climbing up a recently treed hill to get a broader vista, this brought the  Hood Canal into view, we found a log to sit on to enjoy lunch and take in the beauty.


Here is the link to the regular trailhead.  Taking this hike you’ll be rewarded with east views of Bremerton and Seattle.

Greg, Bremerton’s Piano Man

So …one of our fun little Bremerton secrets is not just the downtown Eagles, but Greg playing in the upstairs bar of the downtown Eagles.  This is a fun and friendly gathering, our favorite “stand in” bartender Michael Goodnow pours a good drink and Greg plays his eclectic playlist of music, with the occasional guest singer that joins in. The night usually ends with, of course, you guessed it,  “the piano man”.  No need to be an Eagles member, however you may be invited to join , once you tour this historic and iconic venue, enjoy a couple low cost – well poured cocktails, you may be enticed.  The Eagles is located downtown on the corner of 6th and Washington.

greg the piano man

#bremertonliving #downtownbremerton #pianoman #eagles