Friday, April 29, 2011

Some of my favorite things

I would have broke into the tune from the Sound of Music but I've already done that in a post about a zillion years ago and it is a little cliche. What you'll get instead is a few things that we did over the weekend, apart from the memorial service that I originally went up to Portland to attend. Of which the only highlight was when the minister tried to convert/shame the Muslim daughter of the deceased during the service. Highly entertaining for us and probably frustrating for him. 


The Farmers Market: You know there was no way I was going to miss this what with my love of food and all. Farmers Markets in the Pacific Northwest really don't get started for another month or so but this one seemed well established. It extended about 3 blocks north and south along a divided road with park land in between. It was very Portland, eco-conscience, sustainable and organic. Very little could have made it better with the exception of two things; one, that I didn't feel I could buy anything because I couldn't take it on the plane home and two, I didn't find any huckleberry jam for JR. Poor JR, he had to make do with Tully's coffee.

What I did find were these fabulous mushrooms. I don't know if morels grow in the Portland area, we never could find them up north in Seattle but they didn't look like they had been beaten up on the way there so maybe they do grow around Portland. I've never had hedgehog mushrooms but since I haven't met a mushroom I didn't like sauteed in butter and white wine I'm pretty sure these would have been delish. Fiddlehead ferns? Those I've had. Not my favorite of the forest fodder but okay none the less.

I did split a vegan gluten-free cupcake with my daughter-in-law. Wow! It was good but I almost never eat that much sugar at one time. Had I known I would have laid off that last cup of coffee. I was buzzing for awhile then came the inevitable crash, usually not very attractive, but I soldiered through it.

Jan: You would have loved it. Every meat vendor there sold grass fed, organic, sustainable stuff. I didn't look all that close, you know because it usually gives me the willies but I did look at the signs.

Edited later: WTH Blogger? I had pictures up there. If you dont see them try to imagine a picture of wild mushrooms and other of meat sellers.
Learning Stuff

"learn'in never taught me nuthin and books are the worst'" (Mrs Yellowbeard) We went to their science center on Easter morning thinking that all the families would be busy with bunny and bunny related products. And, while it wasn't packed it was still fairly busy.  

This place is also soooo Portland. All tree-hugging granola-head in a 'let's try to make it cool and trendy' kind of way. Yes, I'm sorry to say I fit right in. I picked up a periodic table of elements t-shirt for The Boy at the gift shop. I try to indulge my geeky spawn. I wanted to get Cap't Dumbass' kids these cool whirlygig things but after terrorizing little kids and pissing off the store employees playing with them in the store I figured that Supreme Leader would have killed me.

 I have no explanation for this but I want it on record that I wasn't drunk. 
(Becky; where were you when I needed you?)


OMG! OMG! OMG! Powell's Books.  

We spent a lovely few hours wandering among the stacks of the largest resale bookstore in North America. This place is one city block stacked to the ceiling of new and used codices. I was in heaven.

I'm pretty sure you can guess how I reacted to this site. I really should have alerted the staff to clean up the drool.

One thought kept going through my mind after the disappointing purchasing options at the farmers market; This was something that I could pack in my suitcase and lug through the airport for the red-eye home. *Note to self; never plan to go directly from the airport to work after getting off a 4 1/2 hour flight at 5:42 am with a suitcase full of books. It will never end well*


The wine that western Oregon in known for it Pinot Noir. It is a tender grape that likes the cold wet early summers and the warmer possibly wetter late summers. It is a particularly hard grape to grow and transform into wine but well worth the effort in my book. Oregon Pinot Noir is probably my favorite of the places that this grape is grown and bottled. 

Sonoma winemakers: Nice try but you can't beat Oregon Pinot in my opinion. (which should be considered authoritative because I drink what is probably considered way too much of it.)

No trip to Portland would be complete without a trip to at least one winery. This one was about an hour away from Portland. The weather was beautiful (for once) and the wine was good.

My Kids

These two were the best part of the trip.

The Geek and his lovely wife.

That is my Portland travel-log for the day. Next trip is in two weeks, where we will be taking in the sites of Chapel Hill, North Carolina. This will be a new adventure for me. I'm not sure how much time I'll be able to spend out and about but I'll try to come back with something. Those 8 to 5 workshops really cut into my 'explore the city' time. 



  1. Oh I could have spent hours, no days, in that bookstore. How many books did you bring home? I don't think I could have contained my book spending heart there.

  2. Sounds like a loverly trip!

  3. What's with the Camel. You cannot just lob a camel into a blog post about the wettest bloody spot on the planet excepting my place. And not expand. Camels in Oz are plausible, in any part of Oregon, outlandish.

  4. I was envious at the mushrooms and damn near sobbed at the grass-fed beef - I am so ready for the farmer's market to start up here!! I'm so desperate, as a matter of fact, I called our CSA farmers yesterday just to pester them about when they'd begin deliveries.

  5. Aww, your son and DIL are adorable. Glad you had a good trip, that vegan gf cupcake sounds good. The GF stuff is always loaded down with sugar to help us forget there's no delicious wheat in it. We went to a bday party today and the mom had made a special trip to get Graham a vegan gluten/casein/soy/dye free cupcake. Isn't that awesome? So my asshole kid says "I don't want that, I don't like chocolate." Grr.

  6. Vince: the camel was part of an exhibit at the Oregon Science center. I want you to know I stood on line for a chance at that photo. Almost had to take on a 6 year old for cutting in line.

  7. WOW, that's bloody well done. I thought it was a real animal taken on some dune system nearby.

  8. Love the family pic…lovely family :)