Saturday, July 28, 2007

New Pillows and Pictures!

Since I am the queen of starting projects and never finishing them, I figured why not start another one? A few weeks back (you may remember) I made new pillows for the living room. After looking at them for a few days, I decided that I hated them! So I went on a mission to find some fabric I really liked and I thought would match the living room. Alas, I found something I loved. It's from the Fresh Cut line designed by Heather Bailey. I wanted to see it on person before I bought it and finding it was NOT easy.

To make a long story short, I finally found it at a shop that I should have tried from the very beginning. It happens to be a quilt shop opened by the sister of one of my co-workers in Ballard. She had one the best selections of fabric for a young hip crafty people. I loved the store. So I found my fabric and a few others matches too. I made this small patchwork pillow today.

Also are some pictures of my lovely stargazer lilies. I planted them last year when there were only 3 buds, I was pleasantly surprised to see that there are over 10 now.

Rob is also making some major progress on the bathroom before we leave town next weekend. We got 2 sinks and 2 toilets delivered to us this morning and he has been working on the framing for the bathroom. I can't wait till it's done.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Husbandless weekend

A few Sundays ago was the rollout of the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner airplane. We went to watch it on the big screen at Qwest Field. My knitting also made the event.

Rob is gone this weekend for a boys bachelor weekend for Coleman. In just a few weeks he'll get married in San Diego. I'm super excited to go since I haven't been to SD yet. While Rob is gone it's a great time for me to clean the house and get my hair done. This morning I had an appointment at the Gary Manuel Aveda Institute for a cut and foil. I stopped to get coffee on my way home and just started cleaning. I hate being home alone; it's so boring.

In other notes, my dream house has come on the market. I think I'll go to the open house tomorrow (I would show a link, but it already under STI). It's on the street that I like to run on and I know I have looked at it and thought "oh, that would be great if that house went on the market." Now it has and we won't buy it. boo!

I haven't written in a while. I know we have been busy with summer stuff, housework, work, and baseball games. I've been to like 6 games in the last 2 weeks. The Mariners are doing so well right now and it's so fun to root for the home team. We constantly count on this guy, JJ, to close it up for us. I've liked JJ Putz all season, but I recently found out he is a nice Michigan boy. Even better!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Willamette Valley wine recap

We left on Tuesday night for the 3.5 hour drive south the Willamette Valley for two full days of wine tasting. Staying at The Hotel Oregon, it's an old historic hotel in downtown McMinnville. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but the rooms were $50 a night and there is no sales tax so you could get nicer rooms (with an actual bathroom) but why? Very simple room; bed, sink, window, no tv, but a newspaper (NOT USA Today!). Not only was this a cool old hotel but they also had a rooftop bar, pub on the first floor, a wine bar, and brew their own beer. This hotel was the perfect location at the perfect price for this short trip.

The next morning we had a great breakfast at the Crecsent Café across the street. It was 4th of July and the town was rather dead. I was glad to see they were open, it was a great breakfast. After breakfast we headed out with a wine map to explore the area. Below is a list of the wineries that we tasted at.

August CellarsNo tasting fee. Really nice building. The guys working were extremely friendly and there wasn’t one wine I didn’t think was great.
Wine purchased:
August Cellars 2003 Marechal Foch August Cellars 2006 Rose August Cellars 2004 Pinot Noir

Laurel Ridge - $5 Tasting Fee,- towards purchase. Again here the woman working was extremely friendly. Friendly even to the guy next to me who turned up his nose at all the white wines and the smug guy on the other side of me who rolled in with his Maseratti.
Wine purchased:
Laurel Ridge 2002 Vintage Port – I’m not a port fan, but this… i
s really something! Laurel Ridge 2006 Pinot Blanc Laurel Ridge 2005 Riesling

Sokol Blosser - $5 Tasting Fee. The ground of this winery were gorgeous. It was a really beautiful location.
Wine Purchased:
Sokol Blosser 2006 Rose Pinot Noir Sokol Blosser Evolution

Duck Pond No Tasting Fee. Another great place. It was really busy. We’ve actually had this wine before and liked it, so it was fun to try something other than the Pinot this time.
Wine Puchased:
Duck Pond 2004 Syrah

Torri Mor - $5 tasting fee. Good wine but very high prices. We did not purchase there.

It’s important to note that I did not do all the tasting on Wednesday. One of us had to drive. After tasting we went back to the hotel and ate on the rooftop deck then went to bed.

Thursday morning we got up and went down to Wild Wood Café. Another yummy breakfast and a good base as it was my day to drink and Rob’s day to drive.

Scott Paul - $10 tasting fee. I wasn’t really excited about the wines because most of them were from France. They were sold out of many of their Pinot’s so I didn’t really care for this tasting. The building however, was amazing. It’s downtown Carlton.

Elk Cove No tasting fee. A really beautiful setting. They also have a B&B that we considered staying at. The people there were really friendly and all the wines were really good.
Wine Purchased:
Elk Cove Vineyards 2006 Pinot Noir Rose Elk Cove Vineyards 2005 Pinot Noir Elk Cove Vineyards 2006 Riesling Late Harvest

Kramer VineyardsNo tasting fee. They also had about 12 wines on their tasting menu, which was crazy. The woman working there was so nice and it was a really fun place.
Wine Purchased:
Kramer Vineyards 2003 Pinot Noir Kramer Vineyards 1998 Pinot Noir Kramer Vineyards Pinot Gris Kramer Vineyards Celebration Sparkling Wine

Willakenzie EstateNo tasting fee. Another new beautiful building with a nice setting.
Wine Purchased:

Willakenzie Estate 2004 Pinot Gris
ErathNo tasting fee. I am a big fan of the Erath Pinot. Before Rob moved to Seattle, I drank this often… alone. I was excited to try some of their other wines, but was not surprised when I walked out with the same wine I could buy here!
Wine Purchased:
Erath 2005 Pinot Noir

Archery Summit - $15 tasting fee. Seems high, right? This was a really nice place too and he gave very generous pours. It was 4 different types of Pinots and Oh My Gosh, they were fantastic! Why didn’t I buy anything? Because the wines were $75ish a bottle. Seriously - it was so goo.

Back at the the hotel and had a drink at the rooftop bar. We chatted up with a really nice local couple who owns a breakfast/lunch joint named Jake’s in McMinnville. He told us to stop by for breakfast in the morning. We had 7pm reservations to celebrate our Anniversary at Nick’s Italian Café next door. 5 course Prix Fix dinner. It was very very good. Although, I will say the decor did not stand up to what I was expecting. It was a perfect night anyway. We ended the evening at the local dive bar drinking Coors Light and playing pool. Can’t go wrong there. Happy 4 years to us, we’re still acting like we did 8 years ago when we first met.

The next day we got up and tried Jake’s. We had a great breakfast and our new friends wouldn’t let us pay for breakfast! We then spend the rest of the morning at the Evergreen Aviation Museum where the Spruce Goose is on display. They also have free wine tasting there and if I was feeling up to par, I would have been there while Rob looked at everything on display.
Wine Purchased:
Evergreen Vineyards 2004 Spruce Goose Pinot Noir

Why have I gone into so much detail about these wineries? 2 reasons.
1. Make sure it’s there for people who search for it. I had the hardest time getting recommendations for the “not to miss” wineries when researching this trip.
2. Remember when people ask me what we liked and where we went? If it’s not written down, I won’t remember.

Tips for next time.
1. Go with more people. A group of 4 or 6 would be a lot of fun.
2. Get a bottle of wine and pack a lunch and hang out at one of the wineries for a while.
3. By the time dinner rolls around, you're probably not going to be hungry. Don't plan on a big dinner. It's not worth it.
4. Be honest when you do or don't like the wines you are tasting. They like to hear the feed back.
5. Don't be afraid to ask questions about the wine.
6. Make sure someone drives. Cops are everywhere and tasting wine is not worth it.

a small detour to see the coast on PCH 101