Saturday, August 29, 2009

Mini Reunions in Portland

One of my sorority sisters from college lives in Portland. Believe it or not, we hadn't seen each other for more than 6 years! that is crazy! It was so nice to just pick up where we left off.

Cutie Face took to her right away, too, and thought she was quite funny:

In fact, she giggled quite a bit:

We had a great night with you, Kaitie, and hope we see you again soon!

The next day, J's brother Noah came to visit. He hadn't seen Cutie Face since she was 4 months old! A lot has changed since then!

On Saturday, we all headed to the Portland Farmer's Market in the University District!

To encourage some uncle/niece bonding time, we had Noah wear the Moby-esque wrap (tutorial on my other blog, Monkeys on the Bed!)

I think Cutie Face had as much fun as Noah did just "hanging out" (ha! get it?)

We definitely loaded up on goodies, too--perfect for our trip to the beach in two hours...

Our visit with Noah was far too short but we enjoyed every minute with him!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Bikes in the City

Lookout! Bikes are EVERYWHERE in Portland!

J has this crazy idea that we only need to be a 1-car family...and that we can survive on one car by getting a Bakfiets. "A WHAT?" you ask? Well, so did I.

A Bafkiets is a Dutch bike that seats three kids in front of you in this little wooden wheelbarrow contraption. We had the privilege of test driving it while in Portland at an awesome little shop called Clever Cycles.

Cutie Face was the first guinea pig...don't know if that was the smartest idea to let her ride first!

Here is our happy family:

Brave Uncle Noah bit the bullet and also took a test ride...

So, will we get one of these? Well, let's just say it wasn't ruled out...

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tourist Traps...and darn good ones, too!

We hit (what we thought/think is) a famous breakfast eatery in Portland on our first morning...

Kenny and Zuke's. Cutie Face LOVED being able to color and eat bagels and J and I enjoyed their breakfast meals as well.

I also performed an obligatory pregnant woman duty and ordered some pickles...for breakfast. Hey! They aren't called Kenny and ZUKE's for nothing!

We also spent a lot of time in Powell's bookstore. The kiddo loved it and she got to kid-watch, too, which is often the highlight of her days!

I'm sure we did some other Portland-y things but those were the highlights!

Playing in Portland's Parks

One thing (among many) that i admired about Portland is that they really take care of their public spaces. They landscape them incredibly well and they always look beautiful! In fact, I took the kiddo out of the jogger at one point during our run for a Kodak moment:

(a bit overexposed due to the Sunrise but you get the gist!)

We first hit Washington Park, which quickly became my favorite. I loved exploring it on a run the next day and knew that if I lived in Portland, that would be part of my daily routine. So gorgeous!

Washington Park is home to the Oregon Zoo, Children's Museum, Arboretum, Rose Gardens, and the Japanese Garden.

After our morning run, we decided make a trip out of our visit to Washington Park. We stopped at Trader Joe's for some picnic food and continued on our way, stopping once we reached a great kids playground area

There was another family there and Cutie Face loved to people watch:

After getting our fill, we headed to the Rose Gardens. I'm usually not a sucker for roses but these were GORGEOUS.

Despite fighting fatigue, we decided to head to the Japanese Gardens, too, and we're so glad we did! It was restful, peaceful, and rejuvenating!

The obligatory self-portrait that J and I find ourselves taking everywhere:

then a nice woman offered to take a family portrait
(still can't figure out this overexposure issue)

Cutie Face got into the waterfall, too (and, no, thankfully not literally!)

She was also intrigued by these creatures:

We loved exploring Portland's parks but they sure did wipe us out!

On Friday night, we hit Jamison Square Park and Cutie Face had the time of her life playing in the fountains!

City parks done well are so awesome! Way to go, Portland!

Bridgetown (err, Portland, OR)!

I learned something new on our vacation--Portland is known as "Bridgetown" because of all the bridges that span the river.

Our first morning in Portland we woke up bright and early (still on EST!) and went for a run, experiencing the bridges first hand:

Steel Bridge at sunrise:

the lovely I-5 bridge:

When Uncle Noah (or, our brother) came to visit, we crossed several other bridges just for kicks. It really reminded me a lot of Boston and Cambridge...and how much I miss that city!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Eastcoast meets the Westcoast!

{I told you I was going to do some crazy posting...and here goes! This time around I'm going to post-date them so that they actually reflect the dates that we were in better that way when I'm trying to put together a blog book in chronological order!}

I forgot to take pics of Cutie Face during our two plane rides but they really were uneventful (thankfully!). When we arrived in Portland, our bags came quickly (yay!) and we were off to the T-Met (Portland's public transportation).

Cutie Face loved riding the train and looking out the windows:

One of the perks of J's job is that he incurs thousands of travel points. We had enough points to stay at the Westin for FREE! YAY!

Cutie Face LOVED the king sized bed and the pillows. If she had it her way, we'd be the ones sleeping in the crib:

We set her up at the business desk to eat some broccoli and avocado.

Then we were off to hit the town!

Yes, we brought our baby jogger. It is such a great stroller!

After walking around for quite a bit, we realized it was 8:00 EST and we were starving! So we stopped in for Sushi happy hour (its good to have east coast timing--you can hit all the happy hours and be legitimately hungry!).

Cutie Face LOVED the rice and the edamame. Everything else was blech to her but delicious to us!

Wiped out from our travels, we headed back to the hotel early, threw the kiddo in bed, and enjoyed a decent night sleep...until we all woke up at 4AM!