Pittock Mansion

A Taste of Hawaii

I took a break from weight lifting for awhile. Part of it was when I hurt my back at the beginning of August. Part of it was just not feeling motivated to do it (first trimester fatigue) and all I could drag my tired butt to do was the elliptical and swimming. Then we got busy with houseguests, I ran a 5k and we went on vacation for our anniversary where we just hiked.

So recently I got back to lifting weights and was feeling a renewed sense of interest and desire and energy to do it. I was SO sore after those first few times lifting. I’m glad to be back at it but yeah, sore! Since I was still a little sore, I took it a little easy on this session. I did bicep curls, overhead tricep extensions, one-leg Romanian Deadlift, my ab workout (including planks and my PT exercises for my back), a seated row and then finished up with 3 miles on the elliptical.


My energy level was great during the whole workout. A LOT better than it had been recently. A little bit later Michael and I met my friend Sam and her boyfriend for a lunch date. When Sam and I made the plans I’d been craving Hawaiian (but hadn’t said anything to her about it yet) and she suggested Ohana. Apparently my friend is psychic!

Ohana was a cute place. The service was great and the food was decent. It definitely wasn’t as good as the food we had in Hawaii but it was tasty. Michael got the spam musubi appetizer. It was something he was looking forward to when we made the plans. The spam musubi we had in Maui was a risky choice–neither of us had ever had spam and it sounded kind of….gross….but it was AMAZING. We were both hoping to relive that. Here was the Portland spam musubi:


It was a little different than what we got on Maui, where it was small–like a sushi roll–that was deep fried and did I mention it was amazing?? This version was pretty good. I had a few bites. The flavor was fantastic. I wish it had been smaller, bite-sized pieces, but overall it was good.

For lunch Michael got a place of short ribs and chicken with rice and macaroni salad. I got the kahlua pig–of course! What I had been craving. It also came with rice and macaroni salad. The kahlua was tender and moist and really good, but on the salty side. Overall the meal was really good and I’d go back and try other things. I had a bite of the short ribs, which were great so I think I’d get that next time.


I had a glass of iced tea sweetened with real lilikoi pulp with lunch. It was too sweet for my liking (I like plain iced tea instead of sweet) but it was kind of a nice treat. I also got a slice of the purple sweet potato and coconut custard pie to go for later. I just couldn’t resist!

Lunch was really filling and a lot of food so dinner was very light (it might have been popcorn and lemonade while we watched a movie). And then of course the pie for dessert. 🙂


The pie was very mild and didn’t have an particular overpowering flavor. The sweet potato was mild, the coconut was mild. It wasn’t overly sweet . It had toasted coconut on top (yum) and the crust of the pie was fantastic!


Woke up SORE. I’m surprised at how sore my lower body was considering the only lower body activity I did was the one-leg Romanian deadlifts. And I used two 10 pound weights and did 3 sets of 10. It’s not like I did something strenuous but damn I was sore. 🙁 I’m guessing this is a pregnancy side-effect. Extra extra sore everything.

Since it was a nice day and I was kind of feeling too sore to go to the gym, we asked Bella if she wanted to go for a hike.


I think she was stoked! We did the Pittock Mansion Hike that starts at the Lower Macleay Park. I’ve never done it before, but I’ve seen parts of it that connect all over Washington Park.


I think we picked up the trail in the middle of it. That happens a lot with the Forest Park trails–especially Wildwood trail (which is huge and connects all the trails in the park) because we definitely missed the Stone House (bummer) and it wasn’t 5 miles roundtrip. Where we started the trail was pretty steep and went up immediately and steady the whole way.


This is a very popular trail and it’s also a popular spot for trail runners. We saw a bunch of trail runners and lots of hikers. Bella did so good on the trail! Not a single bark at any people or other dogs! We hiked for about 40 minutes I think and then we were at the top! Pittock Mansion:


It was a popular place on a sunny Sunday. We walked around to the back and found a bench to sit on where we could eat our lunch in the sunshine. It was a gorgeous view.



The grounds were pretty and there were lots of flowers till in bloom. My favorites were the dahlias, of course.




After lunch (Michael had a sandwich, I had egg salad with crackers and an apple) we hiked back down Wildwood Trail to the parking lot. We’d considered going a little further to see what we missed on the other part of the trail but it was getting late in the day. Next time. I really want to see the Stone House!


We did 2.77 miles roundtrip. It was a decent little trek in the woods, nice picnic, nice weather. I burned 353 calories.

Pho Reals

How was your weekend? I hope everyone faired the horrible storms that were happening all over the states this weekend. Oregon missed most of it. I didn’t feel the effects of the earthquake that Seattle felt all the way from Canada, but it was definitely a nasty, rainy weekend. The kind of weekend you want to stay indoors with some hot tea and cozy sweaters, and that’s pretty much what we did.

My brother lives in Philly with his wife and two cats. I had to share an email he sent me about his cats and preparing for Hurricane Sandy: “We filled the bath tub with water because we read it on one of the various advisories in preparation for the hurricane. They recommend doing it to have a surplus of water for washing things and flushing the toilet. Anyway, Claus is obsessed with water and had been sitting on the edge of the tub for the last half hour or so. I heard a splash, skittering, and saw a drenched cat slide across the bedroom floor. We are still laughing. Catching him with a towel was exciting!” It made me laugh so hard at the visual! I hope everyone is okay on the East Coast.

My weekend started off great. Michael and I met some friends for dinner on Friday night. It had been too long since we’d seen them. They actually used to work with Michael, so it was fun getting caught up and he got to tell them all about his awesome new job. We met at Pho Oregon. For some reason, I’d been craving pho for weeks–probably just because of the hot, spicy broth. That kind of food is usually what I want when it’s cold and rainy out.

This was Michael’s first time trying Pho, and it was the first time trying this restaurant for all of us. The reviews online said it was one of the best Pho places in Portland. The service was good, the food was delicious, it was really cheap. My only complaint was how bright the lights were there. They could do with dimming them just a tad….

I ordered the beef Pho (nothing too crazy for me). Michael and I also shared some salad rolls with shrimp in them. Even thought I got the small bowl, I still had tons of leftovers, so did Michael. So I combined our leftovers and had them Saturday night for dinner. Pho is very filling.

And of course, I also had lots and lots of tea.

After chatting and eating for a few hours, we went next door to a bar so the three of them could get a beer. I definitely did NOT need any more liquid in my belly. Between the soup, the water, the tea…I was going to be up all night at that rate! I’d forgotten that the weekend before Halloween is usually when people dress up and go out. The bar was packed with people in unique costumes–some particularly frightening.

That guy was actually super nice, despite the terrifying costume! He explained that it was a deer mule pelvis his grandfather had killed 50 years ago and he fashioned it into a mask. Yikes. But cool.

Saturday morning (well, almost afternoon by the time I woke up!), I went to the gym and had a great workout. For a few days this past week my knees had been bothering me again–after 7 days of being pain-free. 🙁 It was rather disappointing but I was glad they felt better on Saturday.

Michael and I spent Saturday afternoon exploring the Pittock Mansion. It’s a huge, beautiful old mansion here in Portland that was built for one of the first families that settled here. Henry Pittock was a pioneer and he started The Oregonian newspaper, as well as being on the first team to climb to the top of Mount Hood. He formed the “Mazamas” club that is even more popular today. His wife was also big into women’s rights.

After years and years and they had passed on, the house started to fall apart. There was also a big storm in the 60’s that ruined the roof. The house was going to be demolished but the citizens of Portland raised enough money to buy it and turn it into a museum to conserve their city’s heritage. Thank goodness they did. It’s a marvelous place to visit.

The mansion is high atop a hill overlooking Portland and in nice weather, you can see Mount St. Helens, Mount Hood and Mount Adams. Saturday was a very foggy, misty day so there wasn’t much to see beyond a few feet in front of us.

The house has been restored to it’s original state and all the things inside were from the family. The antiquities are pretty amazing to see. Check out that kitchen!

And the showers were actually pretty frightening:

Doesn’t it look a lot like a medieval torture device?

You tour most of the house. The tour has informational signs in each room describing the Pittock family’s life, plus all the items in the room.

I love the staircase. It’s the most impressive part of the house. It made me imagine the grand balls and events where the people in beautiful clothes walked up and down those marble stairs. (Is anyone else tired of waiting for Downton Abbey to come back on TV??)

And here is something to give you nightmares:

The kids’ room was full of lots of creepy toys. Yikes.

I’ll leave you with a few photos of the beautiful mansion and grounds:

If you ever make it to Portland, the Pittock Mansion is worth a visit. Just seeing the tiny details of how they lived at the turn of the century was fascinating, as was the opulence. In nice weather, you can hike up to the Mansion from Washington Park and the Rose Gardens.

QUESTION: Does your city have things like this from your settlers?