One Perfect Day

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I didn’t plan to have a perfect day.  I don’t think anyone actually plans that.  But have one I did!

October 8th, 2014 started out gloomy in Portland.  We’d planned to go hiking and drove out to Multnomah Falls in the Columbia River Gorge.  The drive is about 40 min from where we live.  We could see the sun peeking through the clouds the closer we got.  First on the list, however, was salmon. We went past the Falls to Cascade Lockes where the Native Americans sell the salmon they caught the night before.  Only the Natives can sell the salmon in Oregon.  When we pulled up, there was only one table being set up.  We were early.  But oh, the fish!  They had a big King Salmon, about 15 lbs.  She flipped it on the table, asked how much we wanted and proceeded to filet it right there for us.  We got 4 pounds.  When I asked how much, I swooned when she said $8 a pound.  What!!  Have you ever bought wild king salmon in the grocery store?  If so, you’ll know why my heart was beating so fast.fish stand

salmon

We brought a cooler and they had ice.  The day had started perfectly.

We went back to the Falls and parked.   Multnomah Falls are 580′ high.  It’s a stunning sight.  A beautiful Fall day.  We couldn’t get a good picture of the falls height, but got a good one of the lower half.lower half of falls

We hiked up to the top of the Falls and the lookout. top of falls Looking down.  Scary!

From there we continued up, and up and up.  We ended up with an 8 mile hike and 1600 feet at the top of our hike. large rock

There were waterfalls everywhere and so much rushing water!  At various places we could see across to the Columbia river.  It was stunning!

Columbia River  So hard to do it justice!

We were pretty tired after we finished, but the day wasn’t done yet.  We went to happy hour at the Bistro Marquee with new friends.  We have finally made some friends!  We had fried chicken, salad, meatballs and to top it off, bacon cheesecake.  Bistro Marquee

I should have known it would be a perfect day as the SF Giants had beaten the Nationals on a wild pitch the night before!

It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Part of the proceeds from the sale of Kiss For A Cause LipSense go to the American Cancer Foundation.  I have it on sale this month for $20.  It’s normally $25!  All Pink LipSense colors are $2 off.

Let me know if you want one! kiss for a C

I would like to know if you have had a perfect day.  What made your day perfect?

Goat Cheese Fantasies

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I know you are all dying to hear about my goat cheese fantasies.  But, first things first.  Remember my contest from last month?  No?  Well, I had one and I have a winner to announce!  As soon as you see the picture, I am sure you will remember the contest. The winner is…

toga guy

Tassy Meundier! Her caption:  David’s cloak of many colors covers tattoo sins all done by others!  I got several entries, so had a hard time choosing.  I think you’ll agree that Tassy does capture the photo.  Thank you Tassy!

Like all goat cheese fantasies, it started with a peppered bacon BLT.  In tiny Carlton, OR which is in the farm and wine country.  What Carlton lacks in size, it more than makes up for in charm (and bacon).  We went to the wine country to visit the farms which have their own farm shops.  After lunch, we hightailed it to Carlton Farms where they go from raising the animals all the way through to the freezer cases in their store.  They butcher and process right there and if you doubt that go to their store and you can smell it!  We got peppered bacon, steaks and lamb.  And yes, you can tell the difference!

We then went to Kookoolan Farms which is smaller and happens to have Chrissie the farmer!

Chrissie the farmer

Chrissie is a dropout from the Tech Industry.  Aren’t most farmers these days dropouts from the Corporate world?  She raises chickens, vegetables, and makes her own Mead.  She gets her beef. pork and lamb from surrounding dropouts.  Like Carlton farms, the chickens are raised, butchered and sold right there on the farm.  The best part of Kookoolan farms is their little shop where once you get the tour and are told how it works, you can go to 365 days a year.  It’s not staffed!  It’s the honor system.  You go in, get what you want out of the freezers and on the shelves (olive oils, honey, etc), write up your own ticket, then put your money or check in a cardboard box!  Once Chrissie gave us the tour we went in to do some Mead tasting.

Not since the 1950’s, in downtown Blue Earth, MN have I experienced anything like the honor system.  I could pick up what I wanted and tell the shop keeper to charge it (to my parents) or take something home “on approval.”  I am experiencing the 1950’s right here in Carlton, Oregon.

I had never tasted Mead, which is wine made from honey which sounded scary to me.  We tasted sweet and semi sweet and dry meads.  It was an experience!

tasting room at kookoolan

Meanwhile, back to the fantasy.  After being in the bowels of the farm and wine country, of course we are going to move there, raise goats, make goat cheese and bake bread.  A dream come true!  Dropouts ourselves.  Then we drove back to Portland and came to our senses.

A heads up for my SeneGence customers.  SeneGence is raising prices on July 15th.  My website will reflect this rise in prices.  Prices have only been raised twice in 15 years and as ingredients get more expensive you know who the cost gets passed on to.

However!  I am personally not raising my prices until Sept 1.  Please stock up on what you need at the lower prices!

What I really want to know is how many of you ever fantasized about being a dropout?!  And what was your dropout fantasy?

Not There Yet

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It’s been two months. It doesn’t feel like home yet,  and I’m feeling a little homeless.  Where in Portland do we fit?  It’s a hipster City and I am in awe every day!  We are not exactly in the hipster district, but pretty close!

glasses are hip

That’s me on the left.  Actually, they’re pretty cute!  Portland, where one tattoo is never enough.hipsterSo we don’t fit into the hipster lifestyle, yet there are hipsters in our building!  I ran into one today getting off the elevator.  He was also pretty cute.  Maybe going to work??  It looked like he had on some kind of black suit (not the kind we’re used to).  But the hair!  Pomade was all I could think of.  A black volcano on top of his head, Mt St. Helens  all pomaded into place.  Black hipster glasses.  Oh, I wish I could have taken a picture…

What to do when you are desperately missing your kids, grandchildren (do they even remember who we are?) and friends?  Take a road trip!  So we did.  Two weeks in California spent seeing everyone.  It was wonderful.  California is so much more fun when you don’t live there.  I can see why people love to take a vacation there!Easter outfits Liam with tortilla

Olivia and Mackenzie, 15 months.  Liam, 10 months.  Yes, you are right.  That is a tortilla on Liam’s head.  Don’t even ask!  Now you see why the road trip was necessary!

Back in Portland with renewed enthusiasm.  I joined a newcomers club to meet people.  The weather is great.  AND SeneGence came out with the most amazing product (in my book) since LipSense!

There are many days I don’t want to bother with foundation, but it really makes a difference.  Now I don’t have to bother!  Introducing the amazing CC (color correcting) Tinted Moisturizer!  It is also a BB Cream.  BB Cream is skin care and make up in one simple step.  It covers like a foundation!  The color conforms to your skin tone and it’s a moisturizer.  I absolutely love it.tinted moisturizer

What’s in it?  Vitamins A,B,C,E  Orchid Extract, Tea Leaf Extract, Anti-Aging SenePlex Complex.  It helps to correct redness and signs of skin damage.  It fights free radicals with a formula ideal for Acne-prone skin including Amica Flower, a natural anti-inflammatory

Tinted Moisturizer will last several months and is sold for $45.  Followers of my blog will get free shipping!  SeneGence is already sold out, but I ordered several before that happened.  If you would like one, email me at:  sserleth@gmail.com   Free shipping ends on Sunday, May 25th.

Have any of you experienced the hipster culture??

 

Oh City Life, New Life

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“This may be your last day on this Earth.”

Where were we?  Just minding our own business at the Portland DMV.  Our numbers clutched in hand and nervously studying the rules and regulations of the road for the written test.DMV Was this guy serious?  He had walked through the door, stopped in front of another man (obviously not his best friend), and threatened him?

No government institution brings out the murderous instincts in people more than the DMV.  Usually it’s the bureaucrat behind the counter reveling in his power over you that brings it out.  But back to our friend who then calmly walked up to the counter, took his number and sat down.  No reaction either from the man whose last day on Earth it was!  After that the test seemed like no big deal.  I passed it and shockingly the vision test too.  Standards are indeed not high.

Familiarity breeds security and I don’t have that right now.  One of my biggest fears is driving in unfamiliar places.  Part of it is that I can’t see, so street signs are a mystery.  As is the concept of North, East, South and West.  I happily let Tom drive everywhere.  But I knew that couldn’t last forever…

The day arrived.  I wanted to go to Uwajimaya, a fish market in Beaverton.  Tom said he would go along, but I needed to drive.  Down we went to the parking garage.parking garageDid I mention I hate parking garages?  Backing out was no problem, but where was the exit?  I circled once.  Tom said “you missed the exit.”  Alright, I’d find it the second time around.  Nope.  Tom:  “you missed the exit.”  “Well, where is it?”  I asked.  He was not happy.  “You have been down here a hundred times!  You figure it out, I am not telling you.”  His jaw was tightening, and I started laughing.  Third time around, I am looking into every nook and cranny there is and I can’t find it!  Now he was so mad, I was crying with laughter.  “Stop the car! Think about how we get in here.”  Then it dawned on me, I need to go through the gates of the building lot into the Safeway lot and out.  Crises over.  Once out, it was easy.  Now that I can find my way out of the garage, I get to go by myself the next time.

Being uncomfortable in a new situation reminds me of starting with SeneGence.  I loved their LipSense Lipsticks and finally decided to sell them.clip_image002_0004  But I was the kind of person who wore very little makeup and never thought about it.  So a Cosmetic Company was very new and uncomfortable for me.  I had to learn a lot, get my feet wet and make mistakes.  The thought of someone asking me what color they should wear terrified me!  How do I know?  Do I look like I know what color you should wear? I don’t know what color I should wear!  I felt like I was in a parking garage.

I have learned a lot.  Now I can (pretty much) tell what color you should wear and learned some makeup tricks which I am most happy to share!  I have only learned the simple ones, I am still pretty informal when it comes to makeup.

The lesson here is just to get into the car and drive.

Do you have any experiences with something completely new and out of your comfort zone?  Please!  Share them with me and how you dealt with them.  I can use all the driving tips I can get.

Now We’ve Done It!

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It was always Austin, Texas.  That was where we were moving to. Austin Tx

We’d been there several times, looked with a realtor for a week at houses and areas to live.  We’d identified where we wanted to be.

Then one weekend. after a long hike in the hills of Napa, we were moving to Portland, OR.  Just like that, after one single hike.Portland Scene

After 36 years in California, we left on February 26, driving our car and a 17′ U Haul.  We had another couple with us who were going to visit their daughter in Portland.  We were headed to Tualatin, OR, a suburb of Portland where we were spending the night with friends.  All of us and our trailer too.

We arrived 12 hours later.  Sharon and husband Bill, who is a very good sport as he hadn’t met the couple with us, welcomed us with what we needed most:  wine!  Sharon had done a lot of legwork for us including getting a parking permit from the City of Portland for the moving truck which was arriving on Friday and finding us a storage unit for everything in that U Haul!

Thursday was to be the simple day.  All we had to do was go to storage, unload the U Haul, then go downtown and check into our new apartment.  How hard could that be?  The problem was 3 women!  Plans changed every 5 minutes–literally.  Janet trying to coordinate seeing her daughter, me putting in my 2 cents, and Sharon coming up with better ideas for the ones we had already come up with.  Dan was pouring us all coffee, Bill had already gone to work and Tom was trying to make sense of it all.

Of course, when we finally got to the storage unit it was closed! Tom had declined to get the codes as we would just check in when we got there…  After much angst we got a call saying they had been in a meeting and we could come over now.  But–it was lunchtime!  So we had lunch.  We didn’t get to storage until 1:30.  By then Tom was not happy.  He took me aside and said with that voice I know so well “The best thing you, Sharon and Janet can do is leave.  Leave Dan and me to unload and you go home.”  Sharon said to give him 5 minutes to change his mind.  Yup.  It only took 2 minutes.  Someone needed to put the code into the elevator every time and hold the door.  We were needed!

We finished at 4pm and needed to get downtown by 6pm to check in.  We are going to stay at the apt. that night as the moving truck was to arrive the next morning.  Sharon offered to let us spend the night again.  Tom gave me a look.  Judging by our day’s events we decided we’d never make it to the building in time the next morning so we declined.  In rush hour traffic, we made it downtown in time to check in.  But the box we’d packed with overnight essentials was not with us.  So no towels, toilet paper, you get the picture.  What we did have was our Aero bed and suitcases.  We left to meet our friends for dinner where we had a lot of laughs.

We were dead tired.  The Aero bed was pumped up and in we went.  About 15 minutes later, it seemed a bit softer, then softer.  We got out and Tom pumped it up again.  This time it only took about 10 minutes for that feeling.  Then I could feel and hear the air coming out.  It was leaking!  But!  We had duct tape.  No toilet paper, but we had duct tape.  Now it took a whole half hour for the air to seep out.  This is what the morning brought:  aero bed and Stevie

Moving in day was an adventure.  Here is a picture of Janet and Sharon who were both helping.  JJ and Sharon

After clearing out 5 or 6 big boxes over the weekend, I started to look around.  Where was the wardrobe box with every pair of shoes I owned except for the ones I was wearing?  Where was the antique side table I bought 30 years ago in Vail, Colorado?  My favorite ever piece of furniture?  When neither turned up Tom really started to panic wondering how much money we would be investing (he wouldn’t describe shoe purchases as an investment) in shoes.  I was more upset about my table which Tom reminded me I had bought for him for his birthday.  I do not remember that!  We decided they had been stolen.  Tom had seen the table come off the truck, so that was our conclusion.  On Monday, Tom suggested we check on the 7th floor entrance.  We have entrances on both the 6th and 7th floors.  I said I’d been out that entrance a bunch of times and there was nothing there.  We checked anyway.  Not only were the table and my shoes there, but there were 5 other big boxes we hadn’t even missed!  Sigh.  We’d downsized, but not enough!

We have rearranged the furniture 4 times.  All the pictures we hung had to be moved.  We finally found a place for almost everything.  I think we’ll like it here.  IMG_4148

I have neglected my business but am giving myself a pass this month!  More soon.  I have a lot more stories!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shake it Up

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Growing up, I looked at adults as having it made!  Stay up late, watch whatever you wanted on TV, have dinner parties.  Kids had all the problems!  I usually got these thoughts when writing 100 times on the blackboard: ” I will pay attention in class”.  This was done at recess of course under the watchful eye of Sister Mary Ave Maria.  Or when making a fool out of myself over a boy that had less than zero  interest in me. He of course was flattered that I would do such a thing for his benefit. But when you got old (50). it would be all beaches, golfing, traveling,and not a care in the world.

Boy, was I misinformed!  If only.  But what would life be like if it were perfect?

After 36 years of living in California, Tom and I are shaking it up!  Two years ago we sold our big house in Larkspur (3000 sq feet), rented a small house in Napa, Ca (1500 sq feet), and are now moving to a one bedroom loft (950 sq feet), in downtown Portland, Oregon! museum place

We are leaving at the end of February and up to our elbows in boxes.  Why am I writing this blog?  My husband just asked me that question. He thinks I should be getting ready for our big garage sale on Saturday, and I should!  I won’t be here all day on Friday and I’m surrounded by stuff that needs to be priced and sorted.  It’s called “PROCRASTINATION!  The weather forecast for Saturday?  The first major rain storm of the winter…

My solution for weather and all major life events is a new color of lipstick.  These days when I don’t have time to put on makeup, I put on the lipstick and mascara and I’m good to go!  Lipstick is a cure all.  It brightens your face and your mood!  I am curious.  What do men do for their perk me up?  Let me know!

For those customers of mine who are following me, I am giving you a free tick on your virtual lipstick card and also to any new followers.  Didn’t know you had a virtual lipstick card?  I always like to flatter myself that all my customers open all my emails.  I fear that is not the case.  If you missed that email, I started a loyalty program last August.  For every full priced lipstick you buy you get a tick on your card.  When you reach 10, you get a free lipstick!  I started everyone off with a free tick so you only need 9.  Now you are even closer!  Contact me if you want to know what your card looks like.

For those who want to check out this wonderful product and others, I have a website:  http://www.lipslove.com

My next post will be from Portland.  We’re excited!