Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hello Again!

We have been insanely busy getting the new store built out and was able to quickly grab some photos from our walk around the hood today.


PDX Walkabout 11-2k10

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

WTF? I Will Put A Slug In Ya Head!

And as usual, it starts off innocently enough.  We were hanging out on the back porch, enjoying ourselves, when we realized I almost stepped on this monster...

Had to pick it up...

And if you must know, it took about a half hour of scraping with my finger nails and soap to remove the slime fest that had visited itself upon my hand.

On to the weekend before last...  We headed out on Sunday for our first visit to Mt. St. Helens.  Nice drive and it was pretty cool all around.

Once again, in Big Foot country.  Woohoo!  This guy seems to be grabbing for his package for the paparazzi...

And if you plan to fuck with his environment...  Well, he/she has posted signs to let ya know what the consequences are...

This shot we took on the way up gives you an idea of just how far the slurry cruised down the mountain through the river valley...

The Volcano blew on March 18th, 1980 at 8:32am and peppered the globe with ash.

Once we reached the Johnston Ridge Observatory, the clouds were still hovering over the mountain (fail on my part to check the freakin web cam before we left).    However, this shot is good, in that it shows how the top slid down off the face of the mountain and created a whole new landscape.  This debris buried the base of the mountain up to 150 ft deep and could (theoretically) be lifted back up to reform the mountain side and top (sure thing Batman)...

Over about a month's time after the event, there were trapped pockets of water from the river that boiled under the debris and blasted as geysers to create this volcanic looking plateau.

Here is a shot in which you can see some of the remaining trees from the blast.  Some still standing behind the ridge and the rest just blown over snapping at their bases.

At least, that's how I remember it going down.

Definitely worth the visit and we will leave the survivor testimonials for those that visit the observatory and pay their $8 bucks.  Way cool.

A couple of more lively photos from the area...

And we finished off the day with our first trip to Salty's on the Columbia Gourge (Portland side).  We dined on a Creamy Artichoke Dungeness Crab Dip and shared a Dungeness fresh out of the pot for the main course.

C'est la Vie!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Best Get Started

Ah, Where to start.  It's been a hectic couple of weeks with all kinds of updates.

First up, Amelia and her friend Helen came in from DC for a week.  Lots of running around and fun had by all.

Here are a few pics from their visit...

And while all this was going on, Michael was planning a surprise birthday party for Thea's 40th!  Pretty ambitious and Susan and I volunteered to prep some vittles for the event.

I put together an album of the event as well...

Thea's Suprise 40th B-Day 2k10

And to top it off, we had a visitor of the four legged variety since Liby and Dan headed out to Hawaii leaving us all to fend off the infamous Portland Zombies.

The dogs have been gettting along famously and driving us nuts since they both have to crowd into the bed.

Here some pics of the love birds...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Whitewater Shenanigans 2k10!

On Saturday, we went for a one day whitewater rafting adventure.  It was my first time ever and I thought it was pretty awesome.  Some in our crew had some issues with the guide but, whatevs.

We went through River Drifters out of Maupin, OR to raft the Lower Deschutes River.  There is a virtual river map as well here which outlines the rapids we traversed on the trip (click on the waves for pic and info).

I believe it was Shearers Falls Rapids (Class VI) that our crew decided to take the safer left side passage.  After we were over we watched some rafts take the right side with lots of bodies in the water.  In fact, one of those folks apparently dislocated a shoulder and that was game over for some of that crew. Guess we made the right choice even though most of us wanted to go for it.

Not too many pics since our camera is not waterproof but, here are a couple.

Top of the mountain to ya (Mt. Hood around 6:30am at that)...

Part of our crew getting prepped for the day (Ellen, Susan, Evyl, Mendy)...

Post trip relaxation and pain killer (Jaegar Bomb)...

The road less traveled (missed our turn onto 26 which lengthened our trip back substantially)...

Friday, August 20, 2010

One More For The Road!

As we have hinted over the last month or so, we now have confirmation of a new bun in the oven.  Heather and Doug Brown (SF Browns) have officially declared a new addition due Feb 8th 2011!

Baby counter tracker thingy on the left as you can see.

Hope she can hold out until the 16th!  Either way, looks like another Aquarius on it's way.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yooper Fest 2k10

Well, we made it back from Michigan on Sunday.  Once again our travel situation was a challenge but, not as bad as last year (delays on the way out and back which entailed overnight stays in Minneapolis and Detroit - YEAH!).

This year we got to the airport at 6am, which required that we got up at 4:45am.  We were notified after boarding the plane, that the oil filter light was on for one of the engines.  We thought, Ah, do what you must.  After all we upgraded to first class for the PDX to MSP.   To make a long story short, we ended up getting of the plane and re-boarding 3 times as we waited for Delta to fly in a new filter and O-Ring from Seattle or Salt Lake to complete the repair.

Not to mention someone broke the toilet on our new connection fight which caused a slight delay out of MSP to MQT.

So what does this really mean?  We flew out at 1pm, missed our connection and ended up arriving at Ross Lake at about 11:30pm.  Oh and let's not forget, our bags somehow got routed to Detroit instead of Marquette.  Less than first class service (with yellow priority first class bag tags).  Delta agreed on refunded 20K of our 25K miles for the upgrade.

The main point here is that Delta has a guy who will actually deliver the baggage.  This is no small feat as the Cabins are an hour and a half from the airport.  Which includes 5 miles of dirt roads and a small half mile private dirt road in order to deliver the goods.  The delivery arrived at 1am Monday night and we discovered the bags at the hill house around noon the next day.

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Again what does this mean?  No clothes for a day and a half  and a shameful episode of having to wear Dad's boxer shorts for one full day.  Not that that is actually anything to worry about, just would have preferred to salvage some of my independence and integrity.

So, on the way back home, you guessed it, another oil leak on the MSP to PDX leg.  No first class this time but, they managed to find another plane and we got home only about an hour late.  And our bags were there as well.

Anyway, the trip was great.  Thanks Mom & Dad!  Only complaint, it was pretty humid and the mosquitoes had some fun feeding on my wrists and ankles.

Animal Highlights:
One potential Yeti (or if you live in the southeast, Skunk Ape) sighting but, since we don't have proof, this one stays off the list for now.

Food Highlights:
Outdoor Activities:
  • Perseid Meteor Shower viewing from the dock
  • Corn Hole (not what you might think, compliments of the America Cornhole Association - really!)
  • Kayaking
  • Dirt Biking
  • 2.5 horse power lake tour
  • Walks
Lakes Seen And Or Visited:
  • Ross Lake
  • Cusino Lake
  • Worcester Lake
  • Canoe Lake
  • South Gemini Lake
  • Little Ross Lake
  • Lake Superior
  • Lake Michigan
  • Lake Huron
 We also decided to head out to Mackinac Island (pronounced Mackinaw) for a day of reconnaissance for next years 60th anniversary party for Mom & Dad.

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This is one wacky tourist town.  One main strip is about 7 blocks long and no motorized vehicles of any sort are allowed on the Island.  Therefore, there is that unique horsey smell about the place mixed with the sweet, rich flavor of freshly made fudge! We saw trash collectors, The UPS guy all conducting business via horse drawn carriers.  We even saw a midget delivering a UPS package by bicycle.

This is probably also the heaviest per capita bicycle riding town around. While walking about, we decided to to take the horse taxi from the Mission Point Resort back to the main strip.  We skipped the bikes.

We stayed at the Windermere and ate at The Pink Pony and Horn's for lunches and Goodfellow's Italian Chop House for Dinner.  The rooms were fine, the food was good and the weather was great (even though we did not have AC in the room).

All in all, the trip was too short but, we were happy to be able to squeeze this in and hang with the parental unit.

Due to the volume of photos from the trip, we have opted to insert a picasa web photo album versus posting the individual pics.  Click on the link or the album pic and have at it.

Ross Lake 2k10

Saturday, August 7, 2010

More Road Trip Photos 2K10

After the wedding, we were on our third leg of the trip in Napa valley with Evyl K and her family. Bob was kind enough to put us up for 2 nights of fun.

On day 2, Tony (Evyl's Bro), took the role of designated driver for a wine tasting tour in the valley.  Wine tasting is no longer a $5 keep the glass type of experience anymore.  Most were around $20 and no glass.  One was as much as $65 and we passed on that.  The Bestest was Heitz Cellar at no charge and best wine steward to boot.  I was compelled to make a hat purchase from these guys which made up for the freebie.

Here are the ladies at our first stop, Miner Family Vineyards..

Next stop... wait for it... Clos Pegase!  We had to pop in and have a taste.  For those of you that remember, we got married under the big tree at the front of the gardens by the winery.  Well, they removed the tree a week before we arrived due to safety concerns.  And now, there is this spindly little replacement that will take many a year to catch up to it's predecessor.

If you check out the web site, its pretty hilarious that Bacchus is their spokes deity.

Pretty goofy...

They had a few of these placed around the grounds...

Evyl gettin' a little of her own Bacchus on...

And this one is at the end of the parking lot and a gateway to the vineyard...

As mentioned before, Heitz Cellar was the winner hands down on the tasting and delivery.  Very nice seating area outside of the tasting room...

These last ones are after we headed out of Napa.  For whatever reason, we decided to head up 101 again to the coast by Crescent City, CA.  That was probably a mistake due to the extra length and windy roads.  It would have made more sense if we had more time to spend on the coast.

This one is just funny...

Coming out of the mountains and into the marine layer...

Prehistoric Gardens Road side attraction fun on day 2 of the trip home...

Popped into the Crazy Norwegian's for Fish & Chips.  Pretty tasty and the place was hoppin' the whole time we were there...

First Bear sighting...

And of course, Hugo!  This little guy was ready to be home something fierce...

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Marilyn's 80th Birth Day!

Marilyn's crew came over to our place on Sunday to celebrate Marilyn's 80th.  We had a BBQ, plenty of beverages and a perfect day for it.

For Appetizers, we broke open a jar of 1997 Smoked Sockeye Salmon which was delicious.  Caught and smoked by none other than John Thompson himself.  We had Cheese, Pickles, Veggies and Dip to go along with it.

What a hottie (Marilyn playing the Piano) and what a stud...

Susan put together Mac & Cheese, Nicoise Salad, Banana Bread and I grilled Pork Loins marinated in Garlic and Teriyaki.

Marilyn managed to sneak the last bit of Smoke's beer for this photo...

Marilyn (Smoke's wife)...

A couple of crumb grabbers (Kate and Nicholas)...

Kelly and Tommy...

Tommy and Shirley...

And Shirley had the first Yeti sighting...

Smoke, Tommy and Bob are heading out in a couple of weeks to scope out their Elk hunting spot over by Burns, Oregon. Just so ya know, Tommy is 90 and smoke is 80 and they keep it going year after year. No surprise they haven't gotten one recently since they both need to shout a bit to be heard and this is not really conducive to a successful hunting strategy.

Happy hunting!

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Road Trip 2k10 San Francisco

Here we go with round two from our trip and heading into San Francisco.

Fled Red Bluff since it was on track to hit 107 degrees that day and it was hot most of the way.  As we approached Vallejo, we spotted the Marine layer and knew we were in for some classic chilly summer San Francisco fun.

Sunflower farm as we bypassed Sacramento...

Another farm landscape shot (lots of Hay around this time of year)...

Met up with Phredd and Sonia and headed straight to our favorite Oyster Bar in the country...

Definitely worth the wait (about 45 minutes).  We both had Dungeness Crab Cocktails, split a dozen mixed up Miyagi oysters, Smoked Salmon on Bread and of course, an ice cold Anchor Steam on draft.

Funny about the beer situation.  While we were eating, a southern good ole boy stepped up to the bar to order a beer while he and his wife waited and asked what they had.  The server mentioned Anchor Steam (SF's local Brewer for God's sake) and the guy kinda grumbled if they had any American beers like a Budweiser.  The server then naturally replied that Budweiser is actually a Belgium company.  I don't think the guy heard him but, that was righteous.  He ended up getting a Stella Artois and a Bud light.  Both Belgium Beers!

Next up, Zeitgeist, to hang out with Mimi and Pete...

Fawzi and Josie partying at Heather's pad...

Thanks Heather and Doug for letting us crash at your place.  It worked out perfectly!

Well, we had a blast in SF as usual but, it was freezing cold as usual too.