holiday weekend

Doing It All + Then Some

Yay for long weekends!! I got off work a little early on Friday (not by much) but it was enough to beat some of the traffic getting out of downtown. Michael and I chilled outside on the deck in the sunshine after Logan went to sleep and it was so lovely!

Saturday I went to the gym and did some weights. Then that even some friends came over for dinner. Michael made homemade pizzas and we ate outside on the deck.

They brought some salads from Pizzicato (they make amazing salads) — I had the pear and bleu cheese salad with candied walnuts–and we all had some beers. It was my “cheat day” so I happily ate REAL pizza and had beer! Carbs!! YAY! 😉

It was a really nice night–a little on the hot side but I’m not complaining. Memorial Day Weekend is notoriously rotten in Portland. It’s usually cool and rainy. But we lucked out this weekend and it was sunny, hot and clear.

Sunday I went for a swim and then we went to a friend’s 1st Birthday party. It was in a park over by SE Hawthorne.

Ice cream face!

Sunday night we had another dinner party! Two couples came over, one was visiting from Seattle with their kids. We BBQ’ed outside. I made two baked beans, a srichacha one (very spicy!) and regular.

We did chicken drumstricks–half spicy, half not spicy. I love the srichacha BBQ sauce from Trader Joe’s. It’s one of my favorite sauces.

The corn and the baked beans put me WAY over my carbs for the day! Ooops. 🙁 But it was all very tasty. And it felt like summer! We had gelato for dessert.

On Monday I got to sleep in a little bit and then we packed everything up and went for a hike. We drove to Estacada to do the Clackamas River Trail. Michael and I attempted to do it a million years ago, when we were first dating, in January of all months. It was horrifically freezing with an icy headwind so we didn’t make it very far.

This time the conditions were much better! It was kind of overcast and misty on the drive there but once we arrived the sun was coming out.

The trail starts pretty easily. It’s across the street from the parking lot and it’s flat and wide through the forest. Then it starts to get narrow and it goes along the river. 

There were a few spots you had to cross on rocks over a creek.

There were some beautiful views of the Clackamas River:

Then the trail started to climb and it went up and up and got narrower and narrower and there was a sheer drop off on the side. It was very freaky! I hate these kinds of hikes. I have a fear of heights and I can do ok as long as I’m not right on the edge of a cliff and the trail was too edge-of-the-cliff for me.

I didn’t get any good pictures of the narrow, scary, edge-of-cliff trail because I was too freaked out to stop and I was trying not to look down!

The trail did some switchbacks and then switchbacks down and we stopped for lunch at a little picnic/camping area right by the water.

We were about a mile from the waterfall but we decided to turn around after lunch and head back. And good thing we did! We climbed back up the trail and got just passed the cliff area and some hikers told us a tree had fallen across the path–they hadn’t seen it happen but they heard it fall! We were like “ok thanks” and continued on. We honestly didn’t think anything about it. Like–it’s just a tree we have to climb over, or go around or something, no big deal.

Another couple told us about the tree and we started to wonder how bad it was. Well, we turned a corner and there it was. No more trail. I did not get any good photos of the fallen tree or what we had to do to get over it because–it was freaking HARROWING!

That picture doesn’t do it justice at all. So I gave Bella to Michael and scouted it out. I went down and tried to break some branches and stomp on things to get through. Then I got to the actual tree and it was HUGE. And it covered the entire path. There was no going down to get around it. Another couple was climbing up and over the top of where it fell and it was precarious-looking on the side of a huge, steep hill.

FUCK.

There was really no good, easy or safe way to get across. But we had to. There was no other way to get out of the canyon and back to our car. I decided to go first. One of the other hikers helped me up and then I grabbed hold of a tree branch that wasn’t going to snap off (after falling several times, scraping up my arms and getting thorns and splinters in my hands). There was no where great to put your feet, either. You couldn’t tell what was solid ground, rock, or just moss and leaves. UGH!

So I JUMPED to get momentum, flung my body on top of the tree (it was huge), held on to a branch, scooted up a bit to get some more traction, flung my leg over the side and straddled the huge tree. Then I looked down to try and figure out where to put my foot. Again, it was impossible to tell what was solid and what wasn’t. So I figured it out and got to the other side, hanging on to the fallen tree and the side of the steep hill, trying not to fall down.

We tried to get Bella to go underneath the tree but she was freaked out and too scared. So Michael had to pick her up and kind of fling her up onto the tree, I caught her and then she jumped down and scrambled up the side of the mountain. Then Michael took the backpack off and lifted Logan onto the tree and I lifted him over and rested him on the branches and rocks next to me. PHEW. I stopped freaking out a little bit once he was safely with me on the other side of the tree.

Then Michael had to climb over the tree. He got over and got Logan back on his pack and then we had to scramble up, over and then down the side of the mountain–nothing really to hang on to, footing unsure, I basically just kind of crawled and butt scooted from rock to tree and tried to get down.

The photos don’t really show how big the tree was, how deep the gully was around the tree or how steep the hillside was to get down!!! It was quite the adventure. We were safe, we got over and down to the trail with minor scrapes, bruises, cuts and splinters but Logan and Bella were safe so that’s important. It was FREAKY!

We hauled ass back to the car. I had splinters all in my hands, Logan started getting fussy, the strap on the baby backpack broke, and we were all just done with the day!

4.6 miles hiked, 706 calories burned, I think part of my calorie burn was the panic attacks I had on the cliffs and then having to traverse the fallen tree!!

I’m not exaggerating when I say the tree part was pretty freaky. I think we were both rattled. And I was particularly rattled about the idea of being IN the forest, on a hike, at the exact time a tree falls on the trail. Scary! There was no cell service for at least 5 miles and once I had service I tried calling the local ranger station to let them know but they were closed for the holiday, so I called the Estacada Fire Department and they said they’d let the rangers know. I really hope no one got hurt or stranded on the trail!

Anyways, that was our weekend!

Recent Life

My bff Rachel surprised me with an amazing gift recently! Since she lives in Seattle and couldn’t bring us food when Logan was first born, she decided to gift us with a house cleaner instead! It was so sweet of her to think of doing something like that and I couldn’t have been more excited.

I was beyond ecstatic. I’ve been able to keep up with the minimal house cleaning since Logan arrived but it’s definitely not up to my usual standards and deep cleaning…? That hasn’t happened in awhile. A long while…

For local Portland people: I highly recommend the services of Double Duty Cleaning Services. Email: doubledutyclean@gmail.com. Phone: 503-933-1933.

DeNae and her assistant came over one day and cleaned our entire house from top to bottom. They even did stuff I never think of doing (and will try to keep up with in the future!) like dusting light bulbs and cleaning air vents. They even cleaned inside the microwave!

They were efficient and thorough. They used green products for most of it and then used heavy duty hospital-grade type cleaner (that kills stuff like MRSA) for certain areas. It was nice to know that the house was going to be super clean and sanitary. Especially considering our little guy is getting bigger and will be on the move soon.

Michael came home and said our house “sparkles”. It looked AMAZING. I was really happy with the results and hope to hire them again in the future when I need the deep cleaning again. 🙂

I just can’t get over how clean everything is!

In other news, we’ve been a bit more social lately. We went to a friend’s housewarming party and Logan was a little trooper. He slept through most of it. Their yard:

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Love it!

We’ve been out to dinner with him a few times, which was nice. Logan did great and I think the ambient noise of restaurants helped him just sleep through most of it so we could catch up with friends.

This weekend we had some friends over for a BBQ.

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Michael did up his awesome ribs, friends brought over spicy guacamole and some corn on the cob. I made coleslaw for the first time.

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I used this recipe:

Vinegar Coleslaw Recipe

From: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/06/vinegar-coleslaw-recipe.html

Ingredients

  • For the Dressing:
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic (about 1 medium clove)
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • For the Slaw:
  • 1 large head green cabbage (about 3 1/2 pounds), finely shredded on a mandoline or by hand
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely sliced on a mandoline or by hand
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup kosher salt

Instructions

  1. For the Dressing: Whisk together vinegar, sugar, oil, garlic, black pepper, and celery seeds in small bowl.
  2. For the Slaw: Combine cabbage, carrot, and onion in a large bowl. Sprinkle with sugar and salt and toss to combine. Let stand five minutes, then transfer to a large colander and rinse thoroughly under cold running water.
  3. Transfer vegetables to a salad spinner and spin dry. Alternatively, transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet lined with a triple layer of paper towels or a clean kitchen towel and blot mixture dry with more towels. Return to large bowl.
  4. Pour dressing over vegetables and toss to coat. Adjust seasoning to taste with salt, pepper, and/or sugar.
http://www.110pounds.com/?p=50247

Michael and I both prefer vinegar-based coleslaws over mayo. I tried to find a recipe to try for my first time and it was actually kind of hard to find vinegar slaws! I found a few that sounded good.

This recipe was really good and everyone was a fan. My one complaint was that it was a little on the sweet side (and holy cow, 1 cup of sugar?!?!). I made the dressing as is and then tasted it and it was way too sweet for my liking. In the end I added a little more vinegar, doubled the garlic, and add some more salt. Then it was pretty good!

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In the bad news department: an hour before our guests arrived we discovered our air conditioner was broken. JUST IN TIME for the coming heat wave that will be in Portland soon. UGH! Hopefully we can survive the next few days before the guy comes out (and most likely replaces the entire thing…womp womp). But we sat outside for the BBQ so it wasn’t too bad.

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In Logan news: twice last week he slept through the night! He went to sleep at 10pm and then I woke up at 4:45am like WTF IS HAPPENING?!? Completely dazed and confused, unsure of what time it was and kind of freaked out. Then I realized he was ok, he was just still asleep! So instead of getting up at 2am to feed him and pump, I was able to get a solid stretch of sleep! The first time it happened I figured it was a fluke. But when it happened again I started to wonder if maybe he was slowly growing into a “he might sleep all night” routine!

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The only downside for me is going that long in between pumping or feeding is kind of a bad idea. But hopefully it will be okay and my body will get used to that and I won’t have issues. It sure would be nice to just sleep all night!

Sunday was book club. And as usual there was tons of really delicious food:

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Greek Orzo salad, caprese, BBQ’d veggies, homemade bread and this asparagus tart:

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The asparagus tart was amazing! I’ve seen this on pinterest a million times and have wanted to try doing it. Now that I’ve eaten one I know I can make it so I will be trying that soon.

Dessert:

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Fruit tart with chocolate and Bavarian cream. Holy cow was this amazing! I seriously could have eaten so much of it (but didn’t). So delicious!

Lots of good food, hung out with friends, sort of talked about this month’s book (but really ended up just catching up on stuff!) and then it was time for me to head home to feed the baby. It was nice to get out of the house and be social solo, though.

Anyways, that was my weekend!