Saturday, July 31, 2010

... doing other things besides eating in portland

tanner springs park

we also had a great time in portland doing other things besides stuffing foods down our gullets. like stopping by tanner springs park in the pearl district and enjoying the quiet and the scenery and the bubbling spring.

at powells

and, obviously, spending lots of quality time at powell's.

international rose test garden

international rose test garden

we also swung by the international rose test garden, which i had never been to before. now, i'm not a lover of roses, but this place might convince me to become one. so much diversity! so many flowers!

international rose test garden

there was a young lady obviously celebrating her quinceañera getting her photos taken amongst the roses. i snuck this photo pretending that i was taking a picture of the flowers, but really, i just wanted to remember how sweet she looked. see her there, way back in background? she almost looks like a rose herself.

pdx seamsters

i was charmed by this sign. that's all.

(also, i'm not going to mention the three fabric stores i visited in portland because that would be crazy. whoops. too late, i guess i just mentioned it.)

r. crumb

r. crumb

we also lucked out in that r. crumb's genesis was being displayed in its entirely at the portland art museum. i wasn't able to read the whole thing, but it was a delight seeing the original drawings in person.

lookout vista

on the way out of town we took a detour by way of the columbia river gorge scenic highway. first we stopped by mcmenamins edgefield to stock up on several bottles of their delicious gin, which i just can't live without. and further along down the road is the lookout vista, which gives you an insane view of the columbia river and the twisty turny road to the falls.

lookout vista

you can also go inside the vista house to see gorgeous arts and crafts style architecture and more pretty views.

multnomah falls

and then, onward to multnomah falls! such prettiness, such greenness!

multnomah falls

such a lovely way to say goodbye to oregon before returning home.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

... eating in portland

the sugar cube

portland has my heart when it comes to food. especially food served out of a cart. i don't know why it is that when an establishment has wheels (or at least, the prospect of wheels) the food suddenly seems exponentially delicious.

pine state biscuits

pine state biscuits

first stop: pine state biscuits on alberta. (ok, not a food cart, but i believe its roots were of the cart variety.) yum. i had a delicious collard greens and egg-topped biscuit with some spicy sauce, and c had a great veggie biscuits and gravy. i will go back again, for sure.

next stop, pok pok for dinner. no pictures. maybe because it was dark or maybe because the food was really good, but not great. though the grilled sweet corn with coconut milk was seriously amazing.


for breakfast on day two: bloop! no lie, a food cart that serves nothing but oatmeal (ok, in reality it's a shared food cart that in the morning serves oatmeal and then they turn it over to a vegan bowl-based food cart... great idea, no?). but it's all cooked to order and it's seriously delicious. and oatmeal is my most favorite of breakfasts, so i'm quite partial to the concept.


i had the apple cider oatmeal and c had the peanut butter banana dream. wow.

the whole bowl

for lunch we stopped by the downtown whole bowl. they serve one thing, but boy is it a delicious thing! i have a suspicion that the secret tali sauce may be very similar to the now defunct gravity bar's lemon flax dressing, but i'm not entirely sure. whatever the case, it was yummy.

solar waffles

for lunch 2: electric boogaloo we stopped by solar waffle. i liked the savory mushroom waffle just fine (and the whole non-profit, solar powered business is great), but the scene was this weird we-don't-really-care-crusty-hippie-thing that didn't jive with me. i like my food clean with minimal hawking of loogies, thank you very much.

ken's artisan pizza

dinner was a true neopolitan-style pizza at ken's artisan pizza. i read some reviews beforehand, many of which mentioned that the pizza was too burnt, which i dismissed because who doesn't love little burned bits on their wood oven baked pizza? but, to be honest, it seriously was burned. like, the entire crust. which is a shame because the pizza could have been great. if only they took it out of the oven about 45 seconds sooner.


day three breakfast was at broder, my most favorite breakfast place in portland. abelskiver and scandinavian decor and very good coffee and blurry pictures abound!

garden state

before heading out of the city, we stopped at the mississippi marketplace for a three-course food cart lunch. the appetizer was some amazing chickpea fries from garden state served up with the surliness one would expect from new jersey.

sushi tree

next up was veggie sushi from the sushi tree. we had to wait forever since the rice needed to cool, but i don't mind at all since the ladies making the sushi were so sweet, we got to eat edamame while we waited, and the sushi was fan-freaking-tastic.

the sugar cube

and lastly, the long-awaited sugar cube offered us dessert for the road. we got a highway to heaven cupcake (lots of moist dense chocolate and ganache and salted caramel), and the acclaimed triple threat chocolate cookie. i might be ashamed to admit that we also had the vanilla bean lemonade and a fizzy lifting drink had i not enjoyed them so very much.

the sugar cube

and now, i will eat salad for the next year to make up for these three days of gluttony. or, at least, until i return to portland again.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

... coming home

feet in the pacific

i'm back! back from a socks-knocking-off birthday and a road trip and a delicious food-devouring adventure and relaxation and sweet, happy times with my c.

back from having my feet in the sands of the pacific.

back with tales to tell of the best. birthday. present. of. all. time. (you think i am exaggerating but wait until you see what i have to show you.)

but right now i am tired. and collapsed in a pile on the sofa. and awaiting the season premiere of mad men (no spoilers!), which our magic box diligently recorded for us whilst we were away.

and, sadly, i may be gone again tomorrow for slightly less happy-inducing adventures. but i am still here. i promise.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

... salsa party!

mixing salsa

gael, of the famous cookie party, and also the miss america party and the f1 monaco grand prix party and the world cup parties and, honestly, every fabulous party you can think of, had us over last (last) weekend for a salsa making party.

how cool is that!?

chopping tomatoes

i think that, in this case, too many cooks in the kitchen was a very good thing. collectively we chopped and diced and squeezed and stirred and tasted until we had just the right salsa.

chopped onions

our first was a classic tomato salsa that we all wanted a little on the spicy side.

chilis and onions

therefore, a lot of jalapeños and serranos were required.

francine's hands

francine was the chili-cutting master. or mistress. or whatever. i was just happy not to have this job.

mango and black beans

mixing mango salsa

mango and lime juice

we also made a lovely, sweet, mango and black bean salsa. i took home two jars of this and have been enjoying it very much.

salsa party decor

of course, a gael party isn't complete without appropriate decorations.


and a most delicious sangria.

bubble parade

all followed by sweet miss kelly demonstrating her moves with her deluxe bubble maker. (i still want to know what a bubble parade is, by the way!)

salsa parts

Monday, July 12, 2010

... summer

pimm's cup

i would like to be a summer baby, but i am, admittedly, more of a child of winter. it is more in my nature to bundle up and hunker down for the cold winter months than to set myself free under the warm summer sun. but this past week in seattle we've had the kind of summer weather you just can't ignore. and i'm doing my best to enjoy the heck out of it.

fresh picked radishes

like picking the first radishes of the season from our garden.


and enjoying them still warm from the sun sprinkled with sea salt.

pride and prejudice and pimm's

or reading a good book in the sun with a well-garnished pimm's cup close at hand.

summer fruit

or having a plate of the best summer fruit for an afternoon snack.

the pub

or momentarily escaping the heat with a cold beer in the cool darkness of the pub.

summer reading

and finding any time, any place to read. these few words from the great gatsby that i read the other day over at jane's most wonderful blog (and, sidenote, you should click on that link and read all her lovely words and enjoy her photos, and then tell her how you want her to update more, because, really, how important is med school anyhow?) really summed up how i feel about summer:

“and so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow fast in movies, i had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer. there was so much to read for one thing….”

true dat.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

... a sweet, quick, handmade gift

colored pencil roll

my niece's birthday was last week, and for the occasion i whipped up this delightful colored pencil roll from joelle hoverson's last-minute patchwork + quilted gifts. i had been wanting this book for a while, and i remember seeing a bunch of people making these a while ago, so when i thought about what to give her, this pencil roll immediately came to mind.

colored pencil roll

when i saw this super cute fabric (which i used for the back of the roll) at fabric crush, i suspected that olivia would like it as much as i do. i think she's at just the right age to appreciate hearts and peace signs and notebook doodles. at least, i hope she is.

colored pencil roll

colored pencil roll

i had the best time digging through my scraps finding fabrics to go with each of the colored pencils. this range of the blues, purples, pinks and browns is my favorite section.

colored pencil roll

but all of them are pretty great.

colored pencil roll

i'm giving her the pencil roll along with a copy of anne of green gables. i am so excited for her to read this book, you have no idea. i will try my best to not have my heart broken if she blows this off for a few years. but i just know that even if she waits until she is 35 to read it for the first time--like i did--she will still adore it.

colored pencil roll