Friday, July 30, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
For my birthday last week, my husband planned a nice hike nearMultnomah Falls. He knows I am in love with hiking in Oregon and somewhat embarrassed to say, we've been here 2-1/2 yrs. and hadn't made it to the falls yet. I picked the actual trail...he won't take credit for that. 5.2 miles up steep trails, gorgeous waterfalls, streams, a freezing soak from the ankles down and I was enthralled and pooped out by the end of the hike. I can't believe it took us this long to experience this wonder and we are so glad we finally got to do it!
Now, back to the "Rose" city and fast forward a few days! Rested up and ready for more, this "city trekker" made her way toward the Portland Rose Test Gardens and the Japanese Gardens. A few miles one way and all up hill but, I decided I was going to enjoy every minute of it. Take it slow, take in the sights and take my book so if I wanted a rest, I could sit on a bench in the shade, sip my water and enjoy! The perfect sit landed as I came to the entrance via walking trail to Washington Park where the gardens and zoo are located.
I pulled out my book and decided that over the next few days, I really needed to finish it. I began reading one of the last chapters and have been overwhelmed by the story as it takes place in wartime Germany. It has been a struggle to read and grasp. Eventually putting the book away and wanting to get this garden touring going, I stumbled across the Oregon Holocaust Memorial. I couldn't believe it! I had heard about this memorial but wasn't sure where it was located. Still reeling about what I had just read, this moment became a stunning reminder of all that was lost. What a beautiful backdrop for something so very powerful and sad. Reading each name etched in the wall, one can't help to take a moment and pause for those that suffered so much.
My trek kind of took on a different feel and I moved on to the gardens. Contemplating the day, seeing the gardens and realizing just how much there is left to experience here in Oregon, I need two more lifetimes to do it all! It's hard to imagine that our visitor's and guests that come to Oregon and only spend a few days here can leave satisfied. I don't think many of them do. The phrase we hear most often is, "we will have to come back so we can do all the other things we wanted to do!"
Well...there is something pretty awesome to be said when you can visit a city or a state and you just can't get quite enough. And there is something to be said when you find your innkeeper so "in love" with where she lives that you "must" come back and experience what she is so passionate about. And that's exactly what it is! Passion! Yes...we are passionate about Oregon!
So...whether you are coming here to see our mansions, visit our gardens, comtemplate our memorials, eat our food, drink our beer and/or wine, or you are just coming cause you have to see what all the hullabaloo is about, we hope you get a true Oregon experience.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Each year, some of these gorgeous dwellings are open for the Annual Tour of Historic Homes and Gardens Tour. This year that happens to be on July 31st! Join hundreds of visitor's to Albany and The Willamette Valley to get a glimpse of some of the most unique homes in the country.
A once thriving agricultural mecca, the sweet town of Albany banks the Willamette River. A perfect location or "hub" for visitors to see our vintage treasures while visiting our awesome downtown and culinary travel destination. Several historic homes, museums, buildings and restaurants will bewaiting to welcome you as you tour our town and see why this region is drawing such a plethora of visitors. Parks, riverwalks, a new promenade, tours and that Oregon culinary experience you have been dying to find!
Come and enjoy a weekend of touring in the Willamette Valley and see why we love it here...in Albany where the charm of vintage bliss captures the historic home lover in all of us!
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Friday, July 9, 2010
Similar to my "Shirred Egg" recipe, this one is healthier version. Not as much cheese but just enough grated on top as it exits my oven...to make it perfect!
Here's the recipe but go on the Williams-Sonoma website to get even more great recipes!
Williams-Sonoma: baked eggs with tomatoes, herbs and cream!
2 tsp. unsalted butter, plus more for ramekins
2 or 3 tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
4 tsp. heavy cream
4 tsp. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter four 1/2-cup ramekins
In a bowl, stir together the tomatoes, basil, parsley, 1/2 tsp. of the salt and 1/2 tsp. of the pepper. Divide evenly among the prepared ramekins. Cut the 2 tsp. butter into small pieces and divide among the ramekins, sprinkling the pieces evenly over the tomato mixture. Break an egg into each ramekin. Season with the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper, dividing evenly. Drizzle each egg with 1 tsp. of the cream. Arrange the ramekins on a rimmed baking sheet.
Bake until the egg whites are opaque and the yolks have firm edges and are soft in the center, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle each serving with 1 tsp. of the cheese. Serve immediately. Serves 4!
I served my dish with fresh baked blueberry scones, organic vanilla yogurt with banana and "Bare Naked" granola, juice and my Allann Bros., "Truck Stop" coffee of course.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
The Vintage Roost Summertime Lawn Sale
Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays, July 22nd- July 31st
This is a very fun SALE where we bring lots of stuff outside and mark it down
We'll also have plenty of new items inside for decorating your home and Garden
and you can always count on us for unique gifts for special people and occasions in your life!
A Great way to spend a Lazy Summer Day!
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Two lasagne's later, after the bruschetta and olive tampenade, but during the caprese and the salad then again later when the Dutch Apple Cheesecake Tart came out of the oven...oh my gosh Patrick! All we could say was, "it was gorgeous, delicious, slice me a big piece and when can we move in?"
My nephew visiting from PA loves cooking and Patrick at Forest Springs Bed and Breakfast in Gresham said "yes" when I asked him a few months ago to give Drew a cooking lesson. Little did I know that this chef and his student would prepare such an awesome feast. Homemade pasta, sauce made with onions, peppers, mushrooms and wow...so good! I couldn't help but peek into the kitchen every now and then to get a picture of these two working together to make our meal. But I made time to explore Forest Springs and take some photos and I do believe this is one of most gorgeous settings I have ever seen!
Forest Springs is breathtaking in itself as it is perched up on a hill surrounded by 3 acres of Oregon foliage. Magnificent trees, plants, ponds, garden sheds and the perfect place for a wedding! And that's a good thing because that is a lot of what goes on at Forest Springs Bed and Breakfast. Patrick is a talented chef and takes those talents right from the breakfasts he prepares for his guests as they dine in the garden and later as he observes as they wed in that very spot. A "secret" space of sorts surrounded by peace and tranquility but not too far from civilization and close enough to get right up to the dining table when he calls you for lasagna!
Thank you Patrick and Stan! You did an awesome job Drew and dinner was delightful surrounded by friends, family, good wine and food and in the middle of an Oregon forest!