Apr 222015
 

With Michael being gone in Seattle for a few days, me being sick and just having a ton of plans lately, it was nice when Sunday finally arrived and we could sleep in (which was amazing after being up so late for Faith No more) and then spend the day tromping through the woods. It was such a nice day, nearly 80 degrees! We packed up the car, grabbed lunch on the way from Potbelly and drove about 45 minutes to LL Stubb Stewart Park.

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It’s towards the beach but still fairly close to Portland. Years ago when we were training for something–maybe Reach the Beach–we drove out to the Banks-Vernonia Trail and did some biking. The trail connects to Stubb Stewart Park but we never actually checked out the park. We arrived about lunch time. For lunch I had the “skinny” turkey breast and swiss sandwich. It was the first time I’ve been to PotbellyΒ and it was pretty good (a nice change from Subway) and what was nice was that they had the calorie count on their menus. My lunch was around 400 calories + 140 for the chips.

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That was our view for lunch. We got a map of the park. There were like 20 miles of hiking trails, mountain biking trails, horse-riding trails and there was also a disc golf course! Plus there was camping options and cabins for rent:

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I REALLY want to go back there this summer and stay there for a weekend. It was such a cool park. There were parts of it that weren’t finished, but it was still a great day exploring. We took the map with us and sort of consulted it but really just wandered. The trails were all connected and you could go a zillion different directions.

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There were some wildflowers blooming but most of it was just greenery.

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I wish I could really detail which trails we explored but I really have no idea. We took so many turns and twists there’s no way I could really remember. At least we didn’t get lost! We parked at the Hilltop Lot (which had really nice bathrooms and picnic areas, covered and not covered) and did a trail near that parking lot. It was pretty easy and mostly downhill and our heart rates never really got over than 100. Then we took this trail:

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The Matchcutter’s Lane was STEEP. Both of us felt REALLY out of shape. And we kind of are. It’s been a few weeks since we’ve been hiking. I’ve been taking it easy in the gym due to my latest injury, so I was really feeling the climb! We found ourselves back where we started, at Hilltop Parking. We’d made a giant circle and it was actually perfect timing because we needed to refill our water bottles and Bella was panting a LOT so we decided to take a 15 minute break in the shade for her to cool down and drink a ton of water.

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And have treats. After the break we decided to try and do the other side of the park, across the “street” from where we parked.

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This part of the trail was mostly covered and it was park of the disc golf course and the mountain biking course. There a few bikers out on the trail, and there seemed to be a designated area with lots of cool things for mountain bikers to do (like wooden bridges and ramps and stuff).

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On this hike I got to test out my new boots on lots of different grounds: pavement, gravel, dirt, soft padded forest covered in pine needles, rocks and mud. They worked great! Generally speaking if you get new boots you shouldn’t do TOO many miles when you are first trying them out. Our plan was to do about 4 miles. 3-4 miles is good for a first time outing. But we ended up doing a little bit more than that, more details to come.

This hiking trip was a bunch of firsts for Bella! First, she discovered what a SNAKE was.

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Thank goodness Bella didn’t really SEE it and didn’t seem bothered. :) Second, she discovered what HORSES were. πŸ˜€

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We came across some horses on the trail and Bella was more than slightly freaked out. I think *I* was more freaked out. We stepped off the trail and let them pass and I warned the people that Bella might bark at them. I worried that she’d bark and spook the horses but she was good! She seemed terrified and cowered behind Michael and didn’t bark. They passed us on the trail and we continued on.

Supposedly there was a “viewpoint” and even though I was pretty done hiking at this point, I agreed to keep going. I should have said no because it added about 1.5 miles to our trip and that was a little too much for a first time in my new boots. And yeah, the viewpoint wasn’t much. So…

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After the (lack of) viewpoint, we turned around and went back down the trail.

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I was hitting the wall. My feet were starting to hurt–not really pain from the boots (I don’t think) but more fatigue. I was starting to drag but we had like 1 mile left to get back to the parking lot. We hiked through dense forest and then all of a sudden I heard the THUMP THUMP THUMP of horse shoes. I heard the horse before I saw it. It was trotting up the trail behind us.

I shouted “HORSE!” And Michael scrambled off the trail, pulling Bella into the bushes. Thankfully the lady on the horse saw us and slowed down. She apologized for scaring us and she didn’t scare us, just more like…made us urgent. LOL I wanted to get Bella away from the horse in case she freaked out. So we waited on the side of the trail for them to gallop up the trail.

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Bella was super freaked out, but again didn’t bark. So that was good. (On a side note, I love horses and as a kid I used to go to horseback riding camp and LOVED it. I really want to go riding again soon.)

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We got back to the car and I was so grateful to take off my boots and thick wool socks, put on some flip flops and change my sweaty shirt into a tank top. Felt immediately better! We ended up hiking 5.85 miles! About a mile and a half longer than I had planned on doing, but I’m glad we did it!

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I burned a LOT of calories too! 893 calories for 2.5 hours of hiking.

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We started to drive back to Portland and for awhile we were stuck in the “everyone returning to Portland from the beach” traffic (suck) but it wasn’t too bad, honestly. We were both hot, tired, sweaty, sticky and thirsty. So of course we stopped at DQ for a refreshing beverage. I got a Pina Colada Orange Julius smoothie and it was DIVINE!

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Bella zonked out in the backseat of the car for the entire ride back to Portland.

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What a good day!

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Apr 212015
 

Last week Bell and I were flying solo! Michael spent a few days in Seattle visiting his friend and going to the Faith No More show in Seattle. Bella and I went for walks in the sunshine, rolled around in the grass and cuddled on the couch. :)

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There were only a few times where Miss B moped at the window, wondering where daddy was. πŸ˜› She was a good cuddle partner while he was gone. Then Michael got back Friday and we went to see Faith No More in Portland!

It’s his favorite band. Like of all time. They haven’t toured in like 20 years or something like that, and Michael said he skipped the last tour because he hadn’t liked that current album and he said he’d regretted skipping it all these years. I was excited to go to the concert because I’m a casual FNM fan but I’ve heard they are amazing live and I knew it would be a fun experience.

I took a half day off from work Friday and went swimming and by the time I got home Michael was back from Seattle. We got ready to go and went out for dinner before the show. We ended up at Slow Bar and got a table outside in the gorgeous sunshine.

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Michael got the happy hour fried chicken and hush puppies and I got the curry chicken salad sandwich with a salad. My sandwich was great! It was so tasty. It had onions, grapes, raisins and currants in it. I was not a fan of the herb vinaigrette salad dressing, but I still ate the salad because I was craving greens. The toasted and spicy nuts on the side were a nice addition, too.

I’d been fighting off a cold or something for a few days and it was mostly a sore throat, which sucked, so I stuck with iced tea and didn’t have anything to drink. After eating we drove downtown and met up with some friends of Michael’s. Apparently he’d run into an old high-school buddy at the Seattle show who was also seeing the show in Portland, so we met up with their group. It was funny–Michael was running into SO many people he used to know and hadn’t seen in decades. It was kind of cool.

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The show was at The Keller and it was a really nice venue for the show. The acoustics were amazing and the band sounded great live! I love it when bands sound pretty much the same as their albums live.

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We were sitting with our good friends Mike & Susanna (whom we went to Hawaii with a few years ago). They’d gotten a babysitter for their two kids and were out on a date night! It was fun hanging out with them.

So the show…they played all the biggest hits and some of the new songs, but mostly they played the favorites. I posted a few short videos on my Instagram if you want to check it out. They played a bunch of my favorites (including “Easy”) and Mike Patton pulled up a pregnant woman from the audience up on stage and danced with her while he sang it. Then he made a joke at the end of the song that he might have gotten her pregnant during that song. LOL It was pretty cute and man, what a cool story for that lady! You can see the set list here. And you can see better pictures that mine here.

One thing I was bummed about…they didn’t play “our song” in Portland (but they did play it at the Seattle show and Michael texted me about it from the mosh pit LOL). It’s “This Guy’s in Love With You” (it’s a Burt Bacharach song) and we had the song play at our wedding when we cut the cake. πŸ˜€

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Mike Patton asked the audience what food cart was the best because he wanted to get some food. πŸ˜€ And when he was in Seattle they ate at Dick’s. Of course.

I can’t get over how amazing they sounded! It was such a good show! It ended around 11pm after they did a few encores and the four of us decided to go out for a bit.

We ended up at Luc Lac downtown. It’s a super popular Vietnamese restaurant that always has a line, which is why I’ve never been. I’ve wanted to, but you know me and standing in long lines for food… πŸ˜› It was nearly midnight and the place was packed. It’s kind of a weird place–you order and pay first, get a number and your drinks, then stand around and wait for a table. There’s really no where to stand, either, so it’s kind of annoying. They have a ton of rules around eating there–you can’t order until everyone in your party is there, there’s no saving seats, etc etc.

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It’s a cute little restaurant, though. Cool wallpaper, tons of parasols on the ceiling, hip music. It’s a neat place for sure and the food was outstanding.

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Mike and Susanna shared some Pho and a steak roll and Michael and I shared two appetizers–the steak roll and the crispy vegetarian rolls. Holy cow were those crispy rolls fantastic. I could have eaten a dozen of those babies!

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I think Mike and Susanna wanted to stay out late and party since they had a babysitter and I wish we could have but both Michael and I were ready for bed! I was sick and he had been staying up late in Seattle because of the show so we left after eating. Kind of a bummer, but hopefully next time we can party. We got home around 1am. Ouch!

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