Sunday, August 30, 2009

A long walk.

Matt and I took advantage of a beautiful summer day to take Walk #2 in Portland City Walks, which was the "Piedmont and Overlook Loops" walk.

On our way to the Kenton Max stop I snapped a picture of the new, smaller Paul Bunyan's coffee place. It used to be on the other side of the Kenton Max stop in an actual building, but I think the recession must have gotten to them.

A close up of their Paul Bunyan. They are quite trusting, I wouldn't leave this out.

Our first stop was Peninsula Park. These planters have always interested me. "Jeb, let's make a huge concrete seating area and plant some Doug Firs in there and in 40 years, the seats will be in shade..."

We timer-photo pose in front of the fountain in the rose garden.

Matt has no time to stop and smell the roses.

But Patricia does.

This is a 100-year old cherry tree whose life was spared as the Portland Community College Cascade Campus' parking lot was poured around it.

I've been to the North Portland Library before but I've never noticed the faces of great authors staring down at me from the carved ceiling.

Said carved ceiling.

Once upon a time this was a funeral home, albeit a lovely one designed in the Italian Renaissance style. Now it is yet another outpost in the McMenamin's empire. Indeed, this is McMenamin's corporate headquarters.

This used to be a convent and girls school. It closed in 1993 and in 1998 the Portland Development Commission purchased it and the seven acres surrounding it. It's now a low-income senior apartments and many Habitat for Humanity houses have been built on the site.

Matt stands in the middle of a traffic calming device.

I've always loved the art at this shop.

Don't you want large metal flowers in your yard?

More art.

Maybe you would like to visit them?

At the Rosa Parks Max stop we learned about the art which is in the style of Columbia River Gorge Native Americans.

This brick has a traditional Klikitat basket weave pattern.

New Seasons has an eco roof.

We walked to this overlook in the, you guessed it, Overlook Neighborhood.

I love finding survey markers.

More overlooking. That's the Fremont Bridge in the distance.

Self portrait.

This house reminded me of the house every five-year-old draws, but with more details.

A twisted trunk.

Maybe yoga got it this way?

These next set of pictures are from a park that I have ridden by many times, but have not often taken time to visit.

A mosaic picnic table top.

Matt attempts to pull something out of the ground.

Oh! Those are caskets! (Don't worry, it's art.)

We snap a self-portrait in a comfortable seat with the caskets behind us.

In the tree in front of us looms a figure.

Some of the houses along the street with this park are also very arty.

And there is an art car parked next to the park.

Art car closeups:

Naked lady seat.

All the plates from the trophies on the front are adorning the back.

The park turned out to be a Portland Water Bureau park and I quite enjoyed my visit.

We spied this teepee in a backyard along the way.

This was a great, if dying, madrona.

What used to be Bess Kaiser Medical Center is now Addidas World Headquaters. The campus is fun to walk through.

I'm a fan of interesting graffitti.
Thus ended our walk. We stopped and had dinner at Sagittarius, which has delicious Mac and Cheese and excellent desserts. It's also hip, without being too cool for us. And they have a variety of horoscope books which are fun to while away your time reading.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Pergola in place.

Both my brother and I were tired on the day the pergola was supposed to be assembled, so it was put off until this moment. Thanks to all our pre-cutting, it went up quickly once Chris used the hammer drill to drill the bases into the concrete. One thing that would have helped was if I had large clamps. They would have been easier to use to keep the vertical supports square as we put the horizontal supports in place. We used bungee cords and my muscle.
Chris puts the final top support in place.

I was very, very excited to see the finished result. I love the way it looks and feel very proud that my planning worked so well.
When drawing up plans for things, I always turn to The Carpenter's Manifesto by Jeffrey Ehrlich and Marc Mannheimer. (ISBN 0-8050-1299-0) College Boyfriend John Bita bought it for me years ago and I'm forever grateful. It's out of print, but I just checked on Abe Books and can be had for less than $10.00. Less than $5.00 in one case. If you are designing anything, it's worth every penny. In very simple terms, the authors take you through steps of design from rough sketch to scale view to 3-D view. Other chapters explain about structure, tools, and techniques. There are also plans to build things: bookcases, coffee tables, loft beds (the first thing I built using this book) potting table. Their can-do tone and clear information inspire confidence.

The plan for this pergola is to plant hardy kiwi in the box in front and let it grow up and around the pergola. Hardy kiwi supposedly produces in shade, though less, and I'm hoping for some hardy kiwi. However, I will take some good growth on the pergola which I think will make our front porch much less "out there."

Cutest kitty in the world.

When Chris delivered the wood for the pergola, I took advantage of the truck being on this side of town and bought four bales of hay. Three of them stacked in a pyramid made a lovely playground for the cats. Here, I catch upstairs kitty and Sentinel looking like the sweet kitties they are.
Such a handsome fellow.

He likes to peer over at things.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Best kitty in the world!

Such a handsome and sweet fellow. He (unlike me) is now on Facebook. You can friend him if you want.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Wood for pergola arrives

Aside from spending my vacation making the Roman shades and caulking and fixing the bike hangers and planning next year's permaculture garden and desperately trying to catch up the blogs, I've also been designing a pergola for the front porch. Chris and I cut the lumber at my mom's house last week (that was an exhausting and puzzling enterprise) and he delivered it today.

Below you can see our trouble spot. It was very difficult to cut notches with square sides in 4X4's. This involved about an hour of "maybe we should do it this way," and "Hmm. no, how about this?" communication before we settled on the technique of drilling pilot holes in the corners and using a jigsaw to cut from the ends. And by "we" I meant that I trouble shot, but Chris did all the cutting. I sanded. Because the 4X4's were bigger than the jigsaw blade, we had to flip the wood over and cut from the other side. It is very difficult to get a straight cut using this technique, so I got to do a lot of sanding. Was our technique one that other people use? I wonder if there was even a better way.
After cutting all the wood, I was exhausted and had to rest the next day or so. It was one of those "I'm not quite as young as I think I am" moments that are so fun to experience.