Portland Trip via iPhone

We took long weekend for the boy’s birthday and headed up to Portland, OR.  We had never been there but it has long been on our ‘places to go’ list.  A city known for natural beauty, good food, and good design (both of the graphic and city planning varieties) is not something we can pass up.  I do have a nice camera but more and more all I use is my iPhone.  One less thing to carry.  So please enjoy Portland via iPhone

We arrived in the afternoon on Saturday.  I got to say, traveling on a Saturday afternoon is incredibly easy. The airport was empty and we flew through security… pretty nice when you have a kid with you.

We used AirBnB to find a wonderful flat to stay in.  I really love renting something more than a hotel room.  One, I like to stay up later than I like my 4 year old to stay up. Two, having a kitchen or at least somewhere to store yogurt is important for maintaining good 4 year old disposition.  Three, a play area is important for not wearing out the kiddo. Plus this place was awesome.  The boy was happy with his window.

We didn’t rent a car – Portland has excellent public transportation and our place was a 10 min walk from downtown.  Along the way we passed this guy in front of the local soccer stadium.

There had been a water warning the day we arrived which resulted in many businesses being closed or having limited offerings (you couldn’t use tap water without boiling it).  This meant that Voodoo Donuts, usually open 24/7 was closed for almost a full day.  Needless to say the line was absolutely crazy when they did open.  Oh well, no Voodoo for us.  We had to ‘make do’ with the best croissants I’ve had in my life.  Really, Ken’s Artisan Bakery is AMAZING!  Go there. Portland people, go there now!  Also, a little Stumptown:

Salt and Straw has just about the best idea in ice cream I’ve ever seen – the ice cream flight.  This means you get 4 small “taster” scoops so you can try a lot more flavors.  This is needed as their flavors are beyond unique and to try only one would be sacrilege.  From front to back you have toasted almond with salted ganache swirls, coffee bourbon, chèvre with marionberry habanero jam, strawberry coconut sorbet.  They boy got chocolate with sprinkles… you know, to mix it up a bit.

We went to the Oregon Zoo and took the train up to the Rose Garden and the really cool playground they have up there.

There is even proof that I was there

We did a lot more including a very nice, mommy and daddy only dinner at Andina and fun times getting lost in Powell’s.  I managed to hold back on my stalking urges and didn’t show up at Colette Patterns, although I did pick up a couple of their patterns… at Powell’s.  Yes, they sell local sewing patterns at the bookstore because THEY ARE THAT AWESOME.

Good time was had by all

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Mini-Break on the Russian River

So I think I’ve mentioned that work has been crushing my soul lately.  Not to whine about it too much, but, yeah, it’s sucked.  After two straight weeks of working every night and weekend, I took a long weekend to reconnect with the family. My plan was to go to Palm Springs and spend some time sitting by a pool with a book and a beer (I dream BIG).  But, that weekend was the same as Coachella.  This did not fit into my lazy weekend plans, although I’m sure there was beer drinking to be had.

Instead we rented a house on the Russian River in itsy-bitsy Duncan Mills.  The house had a fully enclosed yard so the boy could run around without any fear that he would be swept away down the river.  A tall white gate separated the yard from the riverbanks.

April can still be pretty cold under the redwoods.  The river was high and moving quickly so we limited all our kayaking to on land

or viewed from the beach.

The woman who was actually kayaking in that water was amazing.  Jenner is where the river hits the ocean, creating swirling waves in both directions.  The wind was strong and cold – you had to be a pro to be out on that water.  Clearly, she was.

We did a little hiking in Armstrong Woods.  It’s so great to be somewhere where the path is well defined and flat.  We could let the boy run and play without worrying that he would land off trail in a patch of poison oak.

It was wonderful to spend some time with my boys.

Beautiful light through the redwoods

You can hide in a tree.

I love this shot… this is life with a 3 year old. A blur of fascination.