Sunday, January 20, 2008

January Flashback--New Orleans Night

The Young Adults (age 18-35) at our church are going to New Orleans this spring break to do a service project. They had a New Orleans Night which included dinner, dancing, a drink ticket and the chance to bid on many items for the silent auction. It was incredibly fun, the food (made by the young adults) was fabulous and the silent auction was wonderful, because items didn't get bid up too quickly which meant I got to bid more.

Kelly, Heidi and Dan live it up.
I used the night as an excuse to dress up, which meant that Matt dressed up too. Despite his foot bugging him, we danced a bit. Matt's a trooper.
This is the UU Swing Band. They have a longer, more official name, but I forget what it is. I always enjoy hearing them play.
I bid on a variety of things and won two. For awhile there I was worried that I would win everything I bid on, but other people came through for me. I got a lovely painting which will hang over our fuse box. Amanda and I bid on cake decorating and we won. We are splitting four cakes. I'll use my two for Matt's combination graduation/30th birthday party in June.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

January Flashback--It's like watching paint dry.

Oh wait, it's not like watching paint dry, it is watching paint dry.
My enthusiasm for painting, always slight to begin with, only extended to painting two sets of shelves. Thus, the shelves over the refrigerator will have to wait until that magical day when I feel like painting them. But the dining room shelves and the pantry shelves look nice.
I let everything dry for about a week. Past experience has taught me that paint that looks dry and feels dry isn't really dry. By waiting a week I avoided that "sticking" issue that I've had before.
Ideally, I would have taken a picture of the shelves with stuff on them, but I didn't and I'm behind anyway, so that post will have to wait until another day.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

January Flashback--starting out the year with illness.

So we were absent all of January. So here's what we've been doing:

Matt came down with an awful flu that involved two trips to the doctor and more than one trip for medication. I was fine for about two days, when I came down with it too. I went to the doctor once, although by that time I was better. We used Flexcar a lot when we were sick. It came in handy to drive to urgent care and across town, as well as to the drugstore.

I haven't been that sick since high school. I lost my appetite for two days and that never happens. It wasn't very fun at all.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Year's Walk.

In 2005, I was happy to get Portland Hill Walks for Christmas. The book has 20 walks of 3-5-ish miles all over Portland. My favorite part about it is that Laura O. Foster, the author, loves the hidden staircases that are all over the city and many, if not all, of the walks take you on these staircases. It feels so adventurous. Plus, she gives fun historical information about Portland. Matt and I take these walks every so often and we took one today.

Today we took walk #5, which is called "Portland Heights to Park Blocks and Goose Hollow Loop." Here are some highlights.

When I lived downtown, this restaurant was in the neighborhood over from me, but I never ate there. I love their folding outdoor tables.
I've always loved this house, picking it out as one to buy when I win the lottery. On the walk, I learned that this house was originally a three story house in a different location. It gained the bottom two stories when it moved to the present location, due to the slope of the site. Fascinating!
Here's the first set of stairs we climbed. I'm looking back out over Portland.
And Matt, still sick, is ready to climb the rest of the the 100-plus steps to the top.
It was a sunny day, which was a New Year's treat. The views were gorgeous.
Mount Adams is right below that yellow crane.
The homes in Portland Heights are very fancy. Many of them are also built into the hillside, so they either bump against the street, like this one, or are suspended on stilts.
Another great view, this time of Mount St. Helens.
Imagine if this was your view from your porch each morning.
Down, down, down the last staircase.
We walked back and, having just missed our Max train ate at Pastini Pastaria. The food was wonderful after our walk.

Two different New Year's Eve Celebrations

New Year's Eve is my least favorite holiday. The pressure of finding something fun to do throws me right back to Friday night in tenth grade. Therefore, I was thankful that Hafidha and Michael hosted a Young Old People's New Year's Eve party. We came, we ate we hung out, we played games, we watched the ball drop, we played more games, we left.

Dan, Michael (who had many New Year's libations) Hafidha.
Sabrina and Brett
Jan and Dan
Sabrina and me. We're all wearing those funny crowns because they came in our festive crackers. The headgear was my favorite part as my cracker prize was a large plastic paper clip and my joke didn't make sense. But that blue crown? Made my night.
Sabrina brought and cooked this turkey, which was delicious. There was a lot of good food that I forgot to take pictures of. I also didn't take pictures of our rousing game of Apples to Apples which we played with more than 10 people. It is a good party game as it allows people to join at any time and it takes about 30 seconds to learn.
Mark and Amanda, who were kind enough to give me a ride home from the wilds of Vancouver.
After midnight, we broke out the Twister. It was incredibly fun, and my yoga practice came in handy.

Matt and Jeff, Ramon and Heidi did the First Run. It was a 5-K that started at midnight. Their times were better than when they were in the Bo-peep and sheep costumes.....
...despite the fact that Jeff hurt his ankle, Ramon had back trouble and both Matt and Heidi were sick.
Happy New Year!