Nothing Says Lovin’ Like Something From the Oven ~

It was swoon at first sight and love at first bite.

This weekend while a huge swath of the United Stated was hunkered down under ten feet of snow and bone chilling cold, Portland was aglow with bright sunny skies.   It was perfect weather for a winter walk.  All I had to do was convince hubs to pass on a little football, bundle up, and head out into the cold air and blinding sun.  Fortunately, I know the secret.  I enticed him with the promise of brunch and a new restaurant.  Works every time.

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waiting for me to decide on our next tasty treat.

We headed over to the east side of Portland, where tucked away on a quiet corner of Hawthorne Boulevard sits a little slice of Heaven called Tabor Bread.   These folks are working more than a little magic with yeast and flour.  And the magic begins with locally grown wheat which they grind themselves.  Believe me when I say you can taste the love.

taborbreadflourbags

Real red wheat flour, spelt and kamut from local growers.

The flour mill.  How cool is that?

The flour mill. How cool is that?

The minute Hubs and I stepped into this delightful little shop our noses twitched from the heady aromas of yeast and sugar.   And here’s where my plan (not a resolution) went right out the window.  Cup of soup and half a turkey sandwich?   That was the plan.  Ha!  We were called immediately to the sweet, and oh so delicious, dark side – first up we shared a freshly baked pecan sticky bun.  Swoon.  That was devoured while we perused the menu.  Still trying to decide on what to order, we shared a tiny delight called a donut muffin.   DoMuf, how do I love thee?  Let me count the ways.   By this time neither of us was actually hungry and we were pretty well sugared-up, so we decided to be “good” and settled on two cups of rich, house-made hot chocolate and a plate of toast with fresh balsamic pear butter.  Oh my.  Is there anything better than toast made from thick slices of just out of the oven bread?  It was the perfect finish to our three course breakfast.  Oops!  We ate it so fast, I forgot to take photos.

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Nothing says lovin’ like something from the oven at Tabor Bread

The tiny dining room was warmed by the giant brick bread oven along the back wall.   It was comfy and cozy and so we lingered over our toast and chocolate and settled in to watch the show.  The baker never stopped his dance.  A wooden paddle with a 6 foot handle was Ginger to his Fred.  Piping hot loaves of all shapes and sizes slowly filled the racks.  The air even had a hint of smoke.  Did I say heaven?

Finally, with gooey fingers, full bellies, warm hearts and huge smiles on our faces, we agreed it was time to get on with the second leg of our adventure.  We waved goodbye to the kind folks at Tabor Bread and set out to walk off just a few of the 1,000 calories we had each just consumed.  Hubs led the charge and we headed up the hill and then up a little more until we reached the top of Mt. Tabor.   The air was crisp, the sky was blue, the sun was bright in the sky and the birds were a chorus cheering us on as we trudged up the path.  The view from the top was well worth the effort.  taborbreadwalkview  And then we took the easy way down. taborbreadwalkstairs

Happy Camper

Happy Camper

This was one of the tastiest close to home and on foot adventures we’ve had in a while.  We found a little bit of everyday magic at Tabor Bread We will be back…very soon.  Next time we’ll branch out and try some of the savory bread pudding that we didn’t have room for.

Yum!

Nancy

Tulips, Tulips and more Tulips

I have developed very bad case of itchy travel feet.  I have the backpack, the rollie, the travel partner and I am so ready to hit the road, or the skies, or the high seas, but for just a while longer, I am anchored here in Portland.

I have to admit that sometimes I’m so busy dreaming of greener pastures, colorful faraway lands, and take-your-breath-away vistas, that I forget to seek out and enjoy the bountiful beauty that is all around me – right here – in Oregon.  That’s why last Saturday the hubs and I braved some very cold and threatening weather to drive out into farm country and visit a place that had been on my local bucket list for several years – The Tulip Festival at the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm.   It wasn’t Holland, but it was only 45 minutes from home and it was truly spectacular. redtulips tulips5

We wandered the tulip fields for about two hours so I could attempt to take photos with my tiny point and shoot camera and my iphone.   Hubs was a champ.  I’m sure he was done in the first fifteen minutes, but he stood tall and let me play.  When we started to get crowded out by the “real” photographers with their fancy DSLR cameras, high powered lenses and tripods, it was time to head off for a hot toddy and a tasty lunch.  Promise my guy a meal and he’ll sign up for almost any crazy adventure I propose. tulips3 tulips6

I think you will agree the colors were amazing.  Thousands of delicate heads of red, yellow, orange, purple, lavender, and white dancing in the wind.  Picture perfect indeed! tulipspurple singleyellowtulip

I am in love with my iphone camera and cannot wait to use it when we do start our world travels.  In the meantime, we truly enjoyed this close to home adventure.

Cheers!

Nancy