Sunday, June 12, 2011

Why you Should NOT Bike and Sip Wine!

So my birthday is coming up and one thing I have been dreaming of is taking off by bike into the rolling green hills of Oregon on a sunny day and enjoying life. Enjoying friends, the sunshine and strolling through a few wineries that bless the Willamette Valley.... sounds heavenly huh? Like something from the movies.
SO I decided to contact all the people that know wine and biking best that includes my Mom and her local OR friend Pat. One word of concern from Mums and this is the response I get back.

Hi Anna,
Wine tasting by bike is not such a good idea for several reasons:
  • I'll admit to riding my bike after consuming a few beers and it's something that I can't recommend. The Tour de Lab last year comes to mind as an example. It's amazing how unsteady you feel on a bike after even one beer! Your Mom thinks it's dangerous.
  • Most of the wineries I frequent are located along HWY 47 between Carlon and Newburg. Another bunch more are located along Hwy 99 between Newburg and Dundee. Both these roads are very dangerous to ride on with 55 MPH traffic and little to no shoulder.  Your Mom thinks it's dangerous.
  • Wineries tend to be located on big hills not the flats. The two main AVAs (American Viticultural Areas) for those areas are the Jory Hills and the Dundee Hills. Note the word "hills" here.Your Mom thinks it's dangerous.
  • So I'd recommend going for a nice flat ride during the day and sipping some excellent Oregon wines at home with something on the BBQ in the evening.  
p.s. Your Mom did not make me say any of this! Mother's always know best however.

There ya have it folks... Dreams Crushed. Thanks Mum..... But no really I made a different plan. I am going to try out the Banks-Vernonia State Trail and maybe spread out some of my favorite vineyards in between by car- Purple Cow, Willakenzie Estate, and Duck Pond.

Friday, June 10, 2011

What do YOU enjoy? Well I enjoy long strolls.....

Well I enjoy long strolls on the beach and sunsets, and through the forests....ha-ha. I just enjoy walks of any sorts. Dates don't need to be a fancy dinner or something that you always have to pull out the wallet. I actually prefer getting out of the hustle and bustle of  the city and exploring. Just hand in hand in the quiet of nature, with a spectacular view. And I did just that the other night, with this handsome gentleman.

Cooper Mountain Nature Park is just right out of the city. There are trails that take multiple twists and turns through the forest. Its not too long and the scenery is just right.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Two Roads Diverged in a Wood, Which Road Will You Choose?

The Road Not Taken- by Robert Frost

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

This just hit me, and I have to write about it before the thoughts run into media requests and updating media lists. I remember being so in love with this poem at the age of 8. I even memorized and recited it at my elementary school talent show. But just now I have understood how prevalent this perception has been in my life and so many times I have stood staring at those two roads. If I went right my life would lead one direction but if I go left my life would lead another. Most often than not, I choose the destination that is unknown. Maybe that is my adventurous spirit. I hate change, although I hate following the same boring path in life. I get bored doing the same thing too many times in life and I am thrilled by a new destination, a new path, a new journey. Maybe that’s why I cringe a little at taking the same hiking trail…. I think “What about the others?” So many more to explore! Or watching the same movie… “But what about the other stories? Yet to be heard!”

Decisions…my weeks are changing quickly. Every week is different. My life has taken so many turns in the past few weeks I might get dizzy. But God has a plan and he has an understanding and the cool thing is, he knows the path I am going to take. And that has made all the difference.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Homemaker Not to be Confused with Home wrecker…

Sorry that’s a terrible title, but I kind of found it funny. And it’s a Monday, a day I am usually not at my best and spend most of the morning trying to shake off the sleepiness of the sleep I did not catch up on during the weekend. My life is seriously a blur sometimes as I try to cram so much into one 24 hour day. And this weekend was no exception. Although, I am proud to say most of my weekend was spent in my home. Starting out with a Friday night jam session around a tiny fire pit and then Saturday preparing our garden box, weeding and enjoying the later afternoon on a bike ride with one of my best friends.

So my Mom recently purchased her fourth bike…… Yes, fourth! As I would say, why do you need four bikes? For a bike enthusiast that is a ridiculous question, so I came up with a scheme.

I have a bike, most of my friends don’t have a bike….. So it goes, “Hey Mom, want to “loan” me a bike? I mean you don’t really need ALL four.” So the great Mother that she is, “loans” me one of her better bikes and because of this I got to teach my friend Sammie on Saturday the joy of road biking! Can’t say I was the best teacher of street smarts…. I pulled into traffic a bad way, whoops. However, we really did enjoy a leisurely ride through Fanno Creek .

And where does the Homemaker come in….. well yesterday after I dragged myself out of bed finally at noon. I then proceeded to clean the house, mow the lawn, weed, weed-whack, plant vegetables, and clean out the scum from our fish pond. And by grace, I  luckily I woke up free of whatever nasty disease I could have gotten from that water. I may be renting a house, but its sure fun to pretend I’m not and tend to the beautiful home God has currently provided my roommate and I.

Friday, May 20, 2011

U Should Have Called in Sick

These were the words my mother left me....along with this beautiful picture. Of all things I would like to be doing today on this 70 degree day, it would to be on my bike. Biking the countryside. So thank you Mom, for blessing me with this jealousy. According to what she told me this morning, she is at Mt. Angel. A quick Google search and it pulled up this: Definitely a place that deserves checking out.

This is the pleasure of the PNW, when the sun comes out, YOU DON"T WANT TO MISS IT! Rain tomorrow (sigh).

As I have grown out of calling in sick (that was only easy and forgivable at Disney).... I am still quite distracted. If we are truely sick at my work, you get to work from home...but at least I have Wi-Fi in the backyard! :)

Anyways, I will stop complaining and get back to my duties!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Oh Sassy Red Heels- Its Time for a Night on the Town!

Seriously, I have been put in some REALLY awkward and uncomfortable moments with men lately that I could begin writing a book of, “How to NOT treat a lady!”. And I don’t care if we are just friends, there have been some big “Oh no.. you didn’t” moments, that I have brushed aside with a smile and then let myself break in the car. I hate feeling awkward.

But today is a new day, and I got these fancy BCBG red heels in the mail yesterday. Today I feel sassy and ready to take on the world!

I SHALL take these beautiful shoes, dress up and plan a night out on the town with the ladies at Urban Fondue. It's my Mothers fault but I am addicted to cheese. So the thought of cheese fondue makes my mouth water. The dark, candle lit ambiance of this place also makes it the perfect setting for a romantic date, but groups are fun as well. My friend Caitlin recently had her birthday here. I was unfortunately late and had to shove fondue down my mouth before the group left. But through the quick bites, it tasted delicious and I would argue a much cheaper/better quality alternative to the Melting Pot.

Hmm… yes, I am planning this outing soon.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Despise V-day? Do what you LOVE!

Hate is a strong word, so I will go with despise. Like any single girl should, I despise Valentine’s Day. Even if I wasn’t single, this really isn’t my favorite holiday. So how crazy is it, that I participated in the Worst Day of the Year ride? Its name actually coincides with one of the coldest days of the year. But how appropriate that it falls right along the holiday…

But no really, when a day comes up that you know isn’t your favorite, what a better way to cheer yourself up? And in my life- my bike, volunteering + Portland corky culture= TRUE LOVE! Seriously, I couldn’t have had a better Sunday. Making this Monday all the more bearable.

By volunteering, you get a free ride, free meals and a free shirt. What a steal! You can choose between an 18 mile or 40 mile loop and seeing as I didn’t have much time, I chose the 18. (Along with being out of shape, I am so sore today!) Dusting the bike out of the garage, it felt so good to get outside, to ride along the river and dream of owning a house in one of the many beautiful Portland neighborhoods. Last year was a bit of rush to get back to my volunteer duties, but I made sure to get there early and enjoyed all of it with a great girlfriend. The ride was pretty flat with rest stops along the way, that served amazing drinks like Dragonfly Chai. YUM!

After the ride, I supported the Community Cycling Center (CCC) by serving up Laughing Planet Veggie Chili to those riders coming in, washing dishes, and taking down bike racks. The rain didn’t hit until we were taking down, so I think it was definitely a successful day. And I love what the CCC does for the community. You will probably hear more from me about them.

And for today…. I am not eating a tub of ice cream to myself. No, instead I am joining with my fellow single ladies and we are treating ourselves to heart shaped pizza, chocolate, cookies and chick flicks. Oh what a good life.

So stop pitying yourself and do what you LOVE to make yourself feel like a million bucks today.