A Whale of a Time

Seattle is all of the wonderful things I love about Portland and reminds me of all the fun things I enjoyed in San Francisco.

I had chosen to visit The Whale Wins based on a picture that popped up in my Instagram feed (@thisvalleyblog) a handful of months ago. Naturally, I looked up the restaurant (and its sister restaurants) and obsessed over their menu*.

When I learned of the cookbook Renee Erickson had written, I immediately pre-ordered it.

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I got to relive all the dishes I gushed over at The Whale Wins and The Walrus and The Carpenter.

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Here are a few pictures of the most amazing meal I’ve ever had. Enjoy.

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  • the food (the most amazing marrow bones and the goat cheese plate that stole my heart)
  • the perfect date night ambiance (look at that kitchen, the lighting, and the patio)
  • the wonderful staff (that was so very accommodating)

If you ever get the chance to visit Seattle, go to The Whale Wins. I promise you will have the best dining experience.

*I will fight someone over marrow bones and tartare makes my heart skip a beat.

A year in the life…

In the past year I have:
– moved 4 times

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-started and graduated pastry school

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-started and finished my pastry externship

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-had five different jobs

-fostered/adopted a dog

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-  gone through two breakups

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So. If anyone was wondering why the hiatus… Now you know.

Peaceful places in Portland

There is something peacefully magical about Cathedral Park.

Maybe it’s the grandeur of the St. John’s Bridge.

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Or the way the sun casts beams of light so they hit the bridge just so.

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Or maybe it’s the way the park hidden away and as soon as you catch a glimpse of it your heart stops for a moment.

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Currently

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Watching// Anything I can figure out how to watch on my laptop. I don’t own a TV so I’ve really had to step up my internet game in order to find live streams of the news and decent movies on Netflix.

Reading// Anything and everything. I’ve recently discovered the library and I’ve got e-book copies of Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg for Ladies Who Brunch Book Club and Look At Me by Jennifer Egan because I kicked myself for leaving it at the used book store after I started reading a few pages.

Listening// Quite obsessively been listening to Noah Gundersen’s newest album, Ledges. And you should to. His songs were absolutely hauntingly beautiful live and totally moved me in a way I’ve never experienced with music.

Making// My own lunches. I’ve been a full time nanny since the beginning of January and since the family and I have different diets and I hate eating other people’s food, I’ve been packing salads and snacks to get me through my days.

Feeling// Tired. Sleep is hard to come by lately and I’ve made things harder by trying to get to the gym before work (5am).

Planning// A trip. I haven’t taken a vacation in close to ten years and I strongly believe I deserve one. I’ve been tossing around going to Vancouver,BC by train, visiting the BFF in Philly, and more long term, Iceland.

Loving// The idea of having a week to myself between nanny gigs. Rest, relaxation, and exploring Portland are on the agenda.

Currently idea taken from the lovely Erin over at erinwiggle.com

A fresh start

I started the new year with a clean slate. I got a new apartment in a new building. It was the fresh start I needed after ending the past year on a low note.

Now, I’ve known people who are completely against moving into new building until all the kinks have been worked out, but I find it to be quite lovely knowing you’re the first person to use the washer and dryer and sit on the toilet.

My new place is small but is just the cutest little thing and I’ll be calling it home for a while.

Happy New Year

Hello, friends! Happy new year!

What a crazy year 2013 was. Lots of ups, lots of downs. The past six months have been absolutely nutty and, because of it, I sort of went on a little blogging break.

A lot of the madness was personal and I’d like to keep it that way…although I’m sure you’ve taken note of some changes to the blog and my instagram (@thisvalleylife).

I hope this new year brings blogging and creativity back into my life. I just finished pastry school so I’m hoping I’ll have more time for myself and my friends. I’ve been horrible with hanging out and communicating in general.

I’m also dubbing this the year of the career. I think it’s about time for someone to pay me to do something I love and can do long term. There is nothing I would love more than spending my days (or super early mornings) in a bakery. I’m done with being a starving student. Not being able to afford things to bake with has gotten old. No more, my friends! This is my year.

Here’s to less negative craziness in life and more of doing what makes us happy!