Tuesday, December 16, 2008

visitors take 7/christmas concert continued/arctic blast

this sunday the portland area had something the news keeps calling an arctic blast. well, it appeared to be pretty harmless, but after driving a few miles on the freeway we had to get off and buy chains. fun. putting on chains is fun....um, no. basically, the whole portland area is covered in one big sheet of ice with very little pretty snow to show for it. are you asking why we didn't just stay home? well, ben wright came to town on sunday night for an interview at OHSU for a pediatrics program and he stayed with us. a drive that usually only takes 30 minutes ended up taking 2 hours. oh, and chains make TONS of noise! seriously, i thought my car was falling apart when we first started driving with them, b/c they were so loud! anyhow, after we picked up ben we went to a concert by the trail band as part of our christmas concert series. they were so amazing and fun! they played a lot of celtic christmas tunes with a huge variety of instruments and we all really enjoyed the show. i think they will be a new tradition for us each december. i didn't get any pictures of visitor number 7 or the trail band...i'm lame.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

concert series dec 2008

since we're going to be flying solo for christmas this year up here in oregon we decided we needed to make sure we tried our hardest to do christmas things on our own. as part of this task we decided to go to as many holiday concerts as possible. great for me because i LOVE christmas music and so far blake is being a trooper. we're mixing it up with different genres of music and it is proving to be very fun.
the first in our concert series was seeing the Von Trapp Family Children with the Oregon Symphony. yes, they are the REAL Von Trapp's! Can you believe it? I didn't even know that the Von Trapp story was real. the children performed christmas songs and songs from the Sound of Music. they are the grandchildren of the youngest boy portrayed in the movie named Kurt. imagine that! i'll tell you this....they were not nearly as good as the singers in the movie, but it was still fun all the same.the second concert we got to enjoy was an amazing concert by the Portland Cello Project. so far they are one of my favorite finds since we have lived here. the are an indie cello group as funny as that may sound. at their concerts they do songs with different artist and collaborate with them for a really unique show. the concert was at my favorite venue the Aladdin and it had a fantastic theme...they asked everyone to wear very ugly holiday sweaters so a huge portion of the audience was walking around with santa, rudolph, snowflakes, etc across there chest.more to follow....

visitors take 6/thanksgiving 2008

happy very belated thanksgiving...at least know i was thinking of everyone on turkeyday!
we got to spend our first thanksgiving in portland this year and it was nice just having a small dinner with some good company, but it was a little weird not being in arizona or new mexico. we were lucky enough to have alexi and edi come down for a couple of nights to spend the holiday with us. it was edi's first american thanksgiving so the pressure was on! at least he didn't really know what to expect, but think all and all it turned out okay. oh, alexis is a fan of the macy's day parade, and i think i watched more of it this year than i have my whole life....i still don't understand why it is cool. i did try making a few new items this year and my favorite were the popovers. seriously, they were so easy and were really yummy. thanks barefoot contessa for the simple recipe and thanks edi and alexis for slaving away in I-5 traffic on a very busy driving day!oh, and the picture of alexis and edi is at the Pittock Mansion where the amazing race DID end! Happy Holidays!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I/We've been there...Pittock Mansion that is!

Did anyone else watch the tonight and see the preview for next week's season finale? If so, you were seeing Portland's Pittock Mansion as the final stop! That's right, Blake and I thought everything looked very Portlandish so we watched it on slow-motion and figured it out...we're detectives like that. CBS doesn't release the final stop prior to the finale so you can't google the information to confirm our statement yet, but just trust me. For all of you that have come to visit us, you have been there (Ju-this means you and I KNOW that you LOVE this show)! Remember the pretty views of the city and Mt. Hood (look for Mt. Hood in the background if you watch the show next week). Okay, that's all for now...just had to point this out, b/c it excited us that we recognized it. If you aren't a fan of the Amazing Race you should be and if you haven't made it to Portland yet get your booty here!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


We live in a Bob Ross painting! Seriously, we really do! Whatever happened to him? Last night when we went to bed we turned on PBS and there he was in all his painting glory making his sounds and telling his funny stories. Oh how I loved Bob Ross when I was younger and I watched his entire show last night and I found it quite soothing. Here's to Bob Ross! I know there are others of you out there who watched him so you should honor him too! But really, can you even imagine children coming home from school now tuning on PBS to watch a man just paint? It sure is amazing how he just gets those trees and mountains to appear so fast!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

farmers market love

this saturday i went to the big farmers' market in downtown portland i couldn't believe how much great stuff they had. in addition to people selling fresh produce and flowers there were awesome baked goods, hot cider and herbal tea, a bag pipe player and many other great items. basically, i just LOVE going. oh, and the prices are amazing! from market to my kitchen counter. look how huge the radishes are! oh the love of fresh, local, and organic produce!

visitors take 5

(claire-wahkeena falls)
right after beau & danielle departed we had one day to get ready for claire & steve. we met claire and steve on our last european tour and they are great company. unfortunately, i was sick almost the entire they were here so i was a lame host! i got the chance to show claire around the city and to do some shopping and blake rented a killer mountain bike and went on a ride with steve. steve is a pretty skilled rider and he definitely gave blake a ride to remember....apparently blake flew off the bike once and is walking with a bit of a limp, but i think he'd go back in a heartbeat. even though i felt like crappy crap the bulk of the time they were here, it was so fun to see them and to get to know them better. we weren't able to grab a picture of the four of us together, but i did snap a few when i was out with claire. man, the fall here is so flippin' awesome and i can't stop taking pictures. sorry if they are beginning to seem like overkill.
(portland classic chinese garden)
(chrysanthemum display-picture doesn't do them justice at all)

visitors take 4

our great friends from college (even high school for blake), beau and danielle, just came for visit and we had such a blast with them. if we could only convince beau to move here we'd be set-danielle keep working on him! it rained the entire time they were here, but we all made the best of it.
since i've become a local tour guide for the greater portland area i won't bother to post about all things we did and i'll just take point on the highlights.

kayaking on the willamette river in the cold rain and wind. have i mentioned how much i love kayaking? not! seriously, we were so close to talking the boys out of going, but they won and i lost big time! not only was i wet from the rain, but i fell on the dock right before taking off and i got TOTALLY soaked! even though the weather was nasty i must admit it was beautiful looking at the fall colors on our 5.5 mile journey (that's right, we were troopers in the cold).

we went on a ghost hunt in haunted areas of portland with a tour and it was so fun to see people freak out at silly nothings. i got my palm read and was told all about myself and it scared me big time only to find out later in the evening that the tour director had gathered information about me online and that is how he had all of his information. either way it made for entertaining evening of stories and ghost hunting.
(this hotel is rated as one of the top most haunted places in the US and rooms can still be rented for only $25.00/night...Amy-are you interested? LOL)
oh, and not to be forgotten we went to a drag queen show at the recommendation of my grammy. all i can say is wow. maybe i should go ask some of them for makeup tips?
(That Ain't No Lady!)
i almost forgot....we went to the zoo for the first time and it was only $2.00! what a great deal! we didn't know that before we went, but i guess they do $2.00 tuesdays. best $2.00 i've spent in a long time!
($2.00 folks! $2.00!)
i'm drawing a blank on everything else, but i know we ate a lot of great food and just had fun hanging out in portland.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

visitor take 3

after jeff's weekend in oregon i returned to arizona with him to go to some computer training for work. fun. when i returned home this time i brought blake's brother grant back with me. we had another full weekend in portland and we even managed to make it up to seattle for one day. i think i'm going to keep having arizona people come, b/c we didn't have a drop of rain while he was here. again, here are some highlights from our visit with grant. oh, by the time he left grant actually said he was almost sick of trees. i still can't get over that one and i'm sure he was just joking, but he really was in shock with the amount of trees we have here.
(Left: Pike's Place Market. this is the place they throw the fish. I wasn't fast enough to get a pictures, here is some seafood. Right: We went to the Science Center in Seattle and there was a butterfly room and they were EVERYWHERE and it was pretty cool to get so close to them. The eyes scare me a little on this picture though...)
(Here is Madame Maria (aka another local crazy). I told Grant I would pay for him to get his fortune read by Madame Maria and he humored me! Seriously, Blake and I were dying of laughter-she talked to him for over 10 minutes in the middle of the market and he was ready to be done after minute 1. Thanks for being a good sport Grant!)
(Pike's Place Market-one of the many flower vendors. It smelled fantastic one second from the flowers and then the next second I would get a scent of seafood and it just ruined it for me, but the flowers were still beautiful.)
(This picture is for those of you that watch Grey's Anatomy...they show this shot on almost every episode)
(The last of the hydrangeas for the year. Sadness. I LOVE hydrangeas and they were all over Portland when we arrived and now we must say goodbye until next spring.)
(Blake & Grant looking stylish in some hairnets. We went on a food walking tour in downtown Portland and this is in the back of a very yummy bakery. I fortunately had too much hair and the hairnet would not stay on so I got away with rubber band....sorry for anybody who finds hair in their baked goods!)(I have no idea.)

I know that was a lot of pictures, but I just couldn't decide on which to pick. Hotel Allen already has visitors 4 (Beau & Daniell from Flagstaff), visitors 5 (Steve & Claire from California), visitors 6 (Alexis & Edi from Seattle)and visitor 7 (Amy from Utah) lined up and we're accepting reservations after November so if anybody is interested let me know!

visitor take two

when returning home from AZ from ame's wedding i brought jeff back with me for weekend visit. we were busy the entire weekend and instead of posting a list of all the things we did i thought i would just point out some of the highlights. i'm sure blake was glad to get in some time with his bff and they acted just like teenage boys...
(cannon beach on a rain-free day at high tide)
(meeting jimmy hendrix (aka local crazy)...we did not ask for a photo. he appeared out of nowhere and jeff had his camera)
(getting ready for our 4 hour kayak adventure. 4 hours! i didn't enjoy this adventure at all...i SOOOO worried the entire time that i was going to fall in the muddy cold water. blake and jeff sure got a good laugh watching me freak!)
(blake and jeff being "dainty" at the tea house in the chinese garden)
(japanese garden-jeff ready for the shot, but i'm not sure where blake's mind was...maybe he was in zen state of mind. ha.)
(roloff farms once again. wait, i just realized we never bought the pumpkins! seriously, we drove there to get them to carve and we left without them.)
(not the best picture of multnomah falls, but i just had to include it.)

here's to limeade and cinnamon bears!

hooray! amy and ryan are official (you all know this all ready...i'm late on my posting)! ame-you looked stunning and it was so nice to finally meet your ryan! also, thanks for having a wedding for all of us girls to get together! love ya and i couldn't be more happy for you!

Monday, October 6, 2008

i'z be tired

I had the most difficult time getting up this morning for work when my alarm went off…seriously, I guess I can’t hack the adventures of a full weekend anymore and bounce right back to work Monday morning.

With that said, I had a wonderful time with Julie this weekend and she was such a trooper considering it rained a bulk of the time she was here…it’s Portland so what more could be expected?

Here is a rundown on what kept us so busy:

  • Went to lunch at the Elephant Deli. This has to be one of my favorite finds so far, b/c they have a little bit of everything.

  • Toured the Pittock Mansion
  • Visited the Japanese Garden
  • Hopped over to the International Rost Test Garden
  • Went to lunch at Rock Creek Tavern out in the farm land and had the waiter squeeze both of our shoulders.

  • Stopped at Roloff farm and ate some apples that had dropped from a tree, got a wave from Amy Roloff, purchased a pumpkin, and met Amy Roloff. That's right, we met Amy Roloff and talked with her for a few minutes (the farm was dead when we were there probably due the rain) and even got a picture (ju will have to post this).

  • Took a stroll in a park in Hillsboro that pretty much cuts right in the forest. Ju slipped on a wet bridge and almost gave me a heartache.....I don't need a pregnant lady having issues like that while under my supervision

  • Went to a FANTASTIC concert at symphony hall in downtown Porltand where they played the music from Westside Story and had Lang Lang as a guest pianist play a Rachmaninoff concerto

  • Dined at Higgins for yummy northwest cuisine

  • Ventured to the Alberta Arts district and had an amazing breakfast of rice porridge made with coconut milk and fresh mangos

  • Shopped at the Saturday Market in downtown and purchased homemade soaps, fudge, jams, and a few other items

  • Visited the world's largest bookstore

  • Walked, walked and did more walking

  • Went on a walking tour with a local guide where go to go underground and look at famous tunnel, visited the waterfront, and went to an authentic Chinese medicine doctor shop and blah, blah, blah...i don't really recall to much on this part of the day

                              • Drove across the river to Apizza Scholls and waited in this line to have the most delicious Cesar salad and pizza. Total wait time approx 1 hr and 2o min-it's really that good

                              • Went to the Aladdin to listen to a couple blues singers

                              • Drove back to Hillsboro and met up with Blake to see Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist

                              • Woke up and enjoyed some of the yummy peach jam made by Kaylani

                              • Drove to Cannon Beach and looked at it...really that is all we did-it was cold and rainy
                              • Continued to Seaside where Louis & Clark ended their journey and bought salt water taffy

                              • Went on to Astoria and drove across a very large bridge into Washington to turn around and come back, visited the farmers market and ate yummy fresh raspberries where Ju also purchased a marshmallow gun and got her hand massaged by a lotion salesman (she bought the lotion so it must have done the trick)

                              • Visited the Asotria column, walked up to the Goonie's house and interacted with some very friendly sea lions
                              • Drove to Wakeena Falls and Multnomah Falls to view their glory

                              • Ate dinner at Quiznos and dropped Ju off at the airport...seriously, we finished with Quizno's after all that, but we were tired and hungry.

                              Wow, that was a long list, but now maybe Julie can just post fun photos. Thanks for such a fun visit JU!

                              Thursday, October 2, 2008

                              you're it

                              I got tagged and here are the rules. Go to your pictures and go to the 6th folder. Open up the 6th picture and post it. Jen and Ame-lovely. I tag Annie, Marie, and Priscilla