Sunday, September 29, 2013

Beach House Rental

This weekend we headed to Seaside, OR for what was supposed to be a lovely weekend on the coast. What we ended up with was hunkering down in our beach house rental while a giant storm pounded the walls - 4-5inches of rain and 50mph winds!

We did manage to get out briefly on Saturday evening for dinner and a browse through an antique mall (where I got the best 1960s Italian evening purse). For the most part we curled up on the couch (although Saturday I did have an all day meeting to go to; luckily only a few blocks away).

The best thing about the weekend (other than getting away for two nights) was the ADORABLE beach house we rented. If I could have picked it up and taken it home with me I would have.


Two bedrooms, one bathroom...


fully equipped kitchen with a coffee and hot chocolate chip cookies waiting for us...



and a cozy little living room...



While we may not have had the chance to go down to the water, or explore too much in downtown we had a fun weekend snuggled up. I think I'll stay here again too if it's available. Just had so much fun.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Biwa - Check!

It's been a while since I've been able to mark off any of the places on my Portland Food Passport. But this past Tuesday, before going to the Pink Dress Gala, my sister K and I stopped into Biwa for dinner.


Biwa is "home style Japanese food" with everything from grilled (yakitori) small dishes so you can mix and match, to larger bowls of udon and a whole side menu devoted to sake!

 K and I had a smorgasbord (sorry I don't know the Japanese equivalent) of clams in sake and yakitori items - garlic (OMG), lamb (all me), shitaki mushrooms (all K), chicken breast, chicken wings w/ spicy mustard, skirt steak and pork belly.

Yum Yum! And one really cool thing we noticed on the bottom of our menus (as well as a note in with our check) is that Biwa charges a 5% fee to help make sure their wait staff and dishwashers are given a living wage AND have health insurance!

How awesome is that?! I'd be promoting this place even without that (because the food was so good) but that just is icing on the cake! Way to go Biwa!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

White Tees and Pink Tatas

Last night my sister K and I went to the Breast Friends Foundation's Pink Dress Gala.


Why yes, those are the members of Plain White T's we're standing with....they were our dates. LOL

Actually they were the special musical performance and since we bought VIP tickets we had a meet and greet with them. K and I noticed that they all had beers in their hands and then would "hide" them for the pictures.



I'm glad K found the event tickets online because we had a blast. I had been sick last week and then had a lousy day on Tuesday but went anyway...and I'm glad we did.

The VIP room was catered by Elephants Deli (a yummy local catering company), we got gift bags (including coupons, candy shaped like boobies and bottles of wine), two free drink tickets and then of course meeting the Plain White Ts (oh and an autographed picture)!

After the meet and greet the band played.

video


Posh Lingerie was also there with their (crazy expensive) brassieres and corsets. They had set up a spin-the-wheel and win a prize game. I ended up with a Tshirt!

There were other companies too...an insurance company, a weight loss organization, etc. (blah blah) but they also had giveaways and raffles which is always fun.


Not only did we support a good cause, but we got to have a one in a life time chance of meeting the Plain White Ts, and hearing them live in a great/intimate venue.


Thanks sis for dragging me out of the house and making me go. Haha. Next month we have a sister date planned that includes dinner, costumes and murder......that's right a Detective Dinner show just days before Halloween!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Getting Inspired

I can't help it. I know we're still 40+ days away from Halloween but we start decorating the first of October. Over the last few years I've tried to do more in way of DIY with decorations (from cheaper pieces) rather than purchase expensive pieces. I did this last year with some crow's nests (see here).

Here are some of the pieces I've been inspired with so far this season and may give a try this year.









Friday, September 20, 2013

Rustic Rellenos

Growing up in Southern California, I was raised on delicious Mexican food. A good plate of tacos tastes like home. So when we moved to Portland, where only 9.4% of residents are "Hispanic" or "Latino" (compared to my hometown with over 37%) and most of those are from Central and Southern America...GOOD Mexican food is hard to find. 

We've found two sit-down restaurants near us and a taco shop, all of which are "good-enough", but for the most part when we want Mexican food we make it ourselves. Both my mother and I love chilli rellenos, so the other night I had an idea to make a version of them here at home. 

Now traditionally the chilies are roasted and then battered in an egg mixture. However, after a long day at work frying was the last thing I wanted to do. So I made a more rustic version with stuffing the poblano chilies with a scrambled egg mixture, covering them in cheese and sticking them in the oven. 

They turned out delicious!

Ingredients:

3 poblano chilies (or 1 per person)
4 eggs (1 per person +1)
1/2 can Chipotle pinto beans (S&W brand)
3TB Verde salsa
3 handfuls of shredded cheese (I used a Mexican blend)

Directions:

Slice chilies length-wise down one side (creating an envelope or pocket) and scrape out all the seeds. Place chilies on foil lined baking sheet and under a high broiler, allow skin to blister and char (you can do this outside on a grill or on a stove top if you have a gas oven). Turn occasionally to char all sides. Once black and blistered place into bowl and cover with plastic wrap (this will sweat the peppers and allow for easier removal of the skins).

While peppers are sweating heat beans in skillet with verde sauce. Crack eggs into a separate bowl/cup and scramble - pour over beans.

As eggs are cooking, take chilies out of bowl. The skin will easily slide right off - discard skin and put chilies back on lined cookie sheet. Once the eggs are done being cooked stuff into chilies. Top with handfuls of cheese and place in oven (350 for 10min or until cheese is melted).

Serve with your favorite side dishes.



Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Tutus for Tatas

Well I'm home sick today (just been go-go-go lately and not getting enough rest so a little throat-bug found it's way to my body) so I thought I'd sit down and write some long over due blogs. Including this one "Tutus for Tatas*"

Next week my sister K and I are attending the Breast Friend's Foundation fundraiser "Pink Dress Gala" - music (including the Plain White Ts), food, drink and an auction to raise money for breast cancer research. Well obviously the idea is to wear PINK at the Pink Dress Gala....so we were both on the search for something pink to wear. 

Now I have lots of colors in my wardrobe but no pink, so this past weekend I went out shopping looking for something to wear. Now while I didn't find anything pink I did find this beautiful black lace 50's style cocktail dress (from Ross no less). 

Well I bought the dress just because I couldn't resist it...but then I realized if I added a pink ribbon, made a pink petticoat to peak out from underneath and finished the outfit off with a pink flower in my hair it would be PERFECT for the event!

supplies
So off to Fabric Depot I went and bought 10 1/2 yards of pink (various shades of course) tulle, ribbon, elastic and wouldn't you know a pink flower for my hair!! Within the hour - after folding, cutting, tying and twisting - I had a fabulous pink tutu for the gala!

because if pink is good...four pinks are even better
cut into 6in strips
nothin' prettier than a pile of tulle

separate by color
attach slip knot style onto elastic
I did a pattern, rotating the colors
even Asha likes tutus
all done!
 I promise to share the final outfit with you!

under the skirt.




*Note: it wasn't until after I wrote this blog that I found out there is a group/website "Tutus for Tatas". I am not affiliated or associated with this group but did want to give you their weblink in case you found me by mistake: http://www.tutus-for-tatas.com

Monday, September 9, 2013

Homemade Breakfast Sandwich

For a number of years I was awful at eating breakfast. Just didn't feel I had time, wasn't hungry, blah blah blah. Every excuse under in the book. The last year or so I've been better at eating something - an egg, a breakfast sandwich, breakfast burrito - and I've also tried to be better at making breakfast at home (rather than stopping some place on my way into the office).

Homemade breakfast burritos freeze really well but I was in the mood for something different. So this weekend I put together my own version of an egg breakfast sandwich - scrambled eggs, cheese and bacon on English muffins - wrapped them in paper towels and tucked in the freezer. 

fry the bacon

farm fresh eggs

one egg per sandwich

scramble as usual

toast up the English muffins

layer eggs, bacon and cheese - wrap and freeze
They looked delicious as I was assembling them and I can't wait to try one later this morning. Yummy.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Sunflower Fields

It's not that I haven't been traveling recently. I've been to Southern California, Baltimore and Boston all within the last six months...but they've all been work related. And if you travel for work than you know it doesn't matter how amazing the city, how much fun you squeeze in or how much you enjoy the trip - work travel is NOT the same as a vacation.

So with this year's Labor Day weekend I decided I was going to give myself a real vacation. One of my besties just got home from a year in Costa Rica and I figured she was the best excuse to take some extra days off work (on top of the already long weekend), hop on a jet plane and spend some time relaxing.

My plane got in late afternoon on Thursday, so that evening (and the next morning for better photograph lighting) we headed over to Grinter Sunflower Fields.


Some of them were about the size of my hand while others were the size of my HEAD! You could pick them for a recommend donation of a dollar.


They had hay bales scattered around to take more aerial views (some people had brought step ladders), and little cut away nooks to take pictures amongst the flowers


I wish we had been able to go deeper into the fields (we tried and failed) but even with just staying on the parameter I got some beautiful photographs.


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Bootilicious Exposed

Now when I say "bootilicious exposed" I don't mean something sexy like a Beyonce butt-bounce


or the Shakira jiggle



I mean something more like this was my Tweet after the fact



I was meeting my mother after work and took the bus out to where we were meeting up. I get off the bus and swing my large bag up over my shoulder and walk the block to where my mother's car is. As I open the passenger door she's pawing and reaching for me. I put my bag on the front seat floor and ask her what she's doing as I sit down.

"Reaching to pull your dress down" ....the bag had lifted my dress up over my hip and exposed one of my porcelain white thighs and butt cheek to the world!

OMG! I started freaking out.

Did I just flash an entire bus of people? Just the bus driver? No...no I didn't put the bag on my shoulder until I got off the bus. 

CRAP! But there was the guy who got off the bus behind me and walked behind/beside me for the block while on the phone. (To which my mother replied "Well you know he was telling his friend ALL about it!)

Damnit! And what about those board bus riders who stare out the window as the bus drives. They got a show too! 

The next day when I told my coworkers (because how can you not share an embarrassing story like this?) we started coming up with "the positives"

At least it wasn't at work. 
At least I was wearing underwear.
At least they were full coverage and not a thong. 
At least it was only a small block. 
At least it wasn't in downtown.
And now I have another great embarrassing story to share.