Sep 192016
 

Michael and I have wanted to check out Feast for a few years now…a huge foodie event here in Portland that attracts chefs from all over the country to come here and showcase their art. Unfortunately it usually fell on a weekend we weren’t available. Like when we were busy getting married. 🙂

Well for our 2nd wedding anniversary we got tickets to THE event! An evening with Franklin’s BBQ! All the way from Austin, Texas. We went to Franklin’s on our first trip to Austin a few years ago and it was AMAZING. How could we pass up another chance to have it–in Portland AND without standing in line for hours. 🙂

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My parents came down from Seattle to stay with Logan. Michael surprised me last year for our anniversary with a gift card for the hotel we stayed in on our wedding night, The Paramount. Life got in the way (and a baby) and we didn’t get a chance to use it. This weekend seemed like the perfect time to use it! So for our 2nd anniversary we stayed downtown and ate amazing BBQ. This post is all about our adventure.

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Feast isn’t just a foodie event. Proceeds also go to charity, too, which is a good thing!

The Feast event was “intimate” — about 100 tickets or so. The food, drinks, gratuities, and desserts were all included in the ticket price. We got there a little before it started at 4 on Friday and once we got in we got in the drink line.

The bar offering was small, but that was ok. It was partly sponsored by Buffalo Trace and Deschutes beer and then local wine too.

We both got the IPA beer (it was pretty decent, not my favorite but good) and Michael later got the Session (I did NOT like that at all). It was happy hour for a bit while people mingled and found seats on the picnic tables.

There was also chocolate made with tallow and BBQ spices made by Franklin. I didn’t know it at first. I just grabbed a piece of chocolate and was surprised it was kind of salty and spicy. I liked it a lot and then Michael later told me what it was made with! Shock!

We got seats kind of in the middle and we just chilled and enjoyed our drinks in the sunshine and chatted with our “neighbors”. It was super fun meeting new people and talking about Franklin’s. We made a friend, Patrick, who had moved here from the Philippines for work and he was really friendly and we had a great time talking about food events and the NW.

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The vibe was really FUN! It was sunny, hot, there was a DJ there spinning records of old-timey country music (mixed in with some Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton). It was just a really fun time.

Aaron Franklin was really friendly and outgoing and made the rounds welcoming people, thanking them for coming, asking if we were having a good time. Then he made a quick speech and said “let’s eat!”

We got in line for the food and chatted with people in line with us (just like the experience in Austin where we talked to the people who lived there). At least this time we didn’t have to stand in line for 90 minutes to get food. 🙂 AND we were guaranteed food so no worry about them selling out like it did in Austin.

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Your food porn photos:

So the dinner was a “sampler” plate but the portions were really generous! It was a lot of food! There was a rib, that if you picked up the bone the meat just melted off (seriously). There was a piece of sauce, some pulled pork (it was the best pulled pork I’ve ever had) and then of course, the melt-in-your mouth brisket that was like eating butter.

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Dream come true! We got to eat Franklin’s BBQ again!

Dessert was provided by Tillamook Ice Cream. There were three flavors:

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Wow were they good. I’m not a coffee ice cream fan but this was so smooth and mild it was absolutely delicious. Even someone who is not a coffee fan would like it. The marionberry custard was the best of the three. It was smooth and creamy and had chunks of marionberries and I think rice krispies in it. Finally, there was the chocolate with chocolate chunks. Also amazing.

Towards the end of the event celebrity chef Hugh Acheson showed up. That was really cool. We’re both fans and love Top Chef so it was cool to see him in person. He was doing one of the other Feast events the next day, apparently.

We got to chat with Aaron and take some photos at the end. That was great. He was so friendly and nice. Michael got to talk to him about Austin and grilling and I got to take pictures. 🙂

To be continued….

Aug 082016
 

Road trip!

Over the weekend we took Logan up to Seattle. I had planned on taking him up there to meet my grandmas a few months ago but I honestly wasn’t ready for the undertaking. It seemed like an overwhelming feat to go up to Seattle with a teeny baby. I don’t know why, but now I was ready.

I was a little worried about all the crap we’d have to pack for the trip–just for Logan! The pack n’ play folds up pretty well. But we’d have to bring a lot of clothes and diapers (you never know what the day will hold–his record is 6 outfit changes in one day).

Anyhoo! The day started early. Michael went for a long run and then I went to the gym for a quick weights and elliptical workout before we hit the road:

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Logan did GREAT on the drive up to Seattle. He pretty much slept the entire time until we got to Boeing Field, then he woke up and started making noises, getting a little fussy, but not too bad. We got to my parent’s house and unloaded the car and then went to visit my grandma Helen.

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She was SO happy to finally meet the babe! It was so wonderful seeing her face light up at the baby. It was pure joy. It made me happy and brought some tears to my eyes, honestly. I was really happy that Logan could meet Great Grammy Helen!

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He did really great and was in good spirits–probably because he had a three hour nap in the car! We spent about an hour and a half at her place. He got to show off all his skills to his great Grammy and we got to take some photos and get all four generations in one photo, too.

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Then it was time for her dinner and time to get going. It was such a lovely visit and I’m really happy we got to spend so much time together and she got to meet Logan. My grandma is going to be 95 this year! She’s doing great, too.

We went home and my mom fixed us all dinner. Salmon, broccoli and her delicious mustard bread (it’s seriously like crack–I can eat way too much of that bread).

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Dessert was fresh berries–strawberries and blackberries with whipped cream on top.

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Logan did so great. We were definitely out of our element, the schedule was all willy-nilly, but he rolled with it and was a rockstar pretty much all weekend. He slept pretty well, too, despite being in a new place. It’s awesome to see that he can be so flexible.

I’m sure part of it was that he was getting so much attention! He’s definitely spoiled. 🙂

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Sunday morning Logan woke us up bright and early, per usual, and I went to get coffee (not Starbucks–I think I’m the only Seattlelite who does not like it) and my mom made us buttermilk pancakes for breakfast. She used the recipe and Bob’s Red Mill mix that she used for my baby shower and they turn out perfectly!

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I had two small pancakes, a fried eggs and some bacon. It was perfect.

We had some time to kill before we were going to go visit my other grandma, Mary (my dad’s mom) so we drove to Roosevelt and went to the Maple Leaf park to do some walking.

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I think it was about half a mile loop around the reservoir and we did two laps around it. My dad pushed the stroller (which was super adorable). He was way into it and talking to Logan and telling him about the bike he’s building for him and then popping wheelies in the stroller. Dads. LOL

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So after the walk we drove down by the zoo and visited with my Grandma Mary for a bit. She lives in a nursing home after having a lot of strokes over the years. It’s hard to visit, honestly, it makes me sad and it’s hard because she tries to communicate but usually can’t. But this visit was different! She was able to get a lot of words out and she was ECSTATIC to meet Logan! And it was my dad’s birthday on Sunday and she remembered. All good signs if you ask me!

After our visit we went to get lunch at Dick’s, of course.

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Love me some Dick’s. It’s second to In-n-Out but it’s still pretty awesome. We went to the Wallingford one, which is the original.

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Then it was time for us to hit the road.

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We did not get as lucky on the drive home. It ended up taking 4.5 hours. We stopped twice to tend to Logan. He was pretty ok for most of it but when we had an hour left of the trip he got REALLY grumpy and started crying. It was pouring rain, too, so visibility wasn’t great. We stopped at a rest stop and fed him and changed him again and gave him a little play time and attention, hoping that would help.

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Then he fell back asleep and slept the rest of the way home. So even though we had to stop twice to feed/change him and he was a little fussy here and there, it wasn’t too bad.

Bella had been staying overnight at the dog walker’s house with her boyfriend Raja. 🙂 First stop in Portland was picking up Bells!

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She’s so funny. She LOVES Amy and Raja. I’m glad she had a good weekend, too. It was good to be home, though, back to our routine, back with all the animals under one roof and back to normal. It was a great weekend and I am so glad we finally did it! And it makes me want to do some more weekend trips to show Logan our favorites places!