Category Archives: things I like

THINGS I LIKE: spring blooms AND rush creek planters

SPRING IS HERE!  SPRING IS HERE!  (Insert Navin R. Johnson and his new phonebook here.)

While I realize that we are not completely out of the woods, at least we can see a teeny tiny light at the end of the proverbial tunnel.  Rain, sun, hail, snow, sun, rain, wind….welcome to a typical spring day in Oregon!  It’s still a bit early to fire up the garden, but I did plant my first flowers on Sunday afternoon.  YESSSSS.   This could not come a minute too soon, as I’ve been in major bloom withdrawals.

Early spring is the perfect time for one of my favorite flowers: ranunculus.  Here are my happy flowers, in one of my favorite planters by Rush Creek Designs.  Hood River’s adorable Good News Gardening carries a variety of these planters, including their biodegradable Juniper collection.

The bright colors and modern designs take me to my happy place:

Hellloooo spring….it’s nice to see you again!

SUN EXPOSURE: Full to Partial
SEASON: Late Late Spring/Early Summer
WATER:  Keep soil moist and well drained. Avoid overwatering
FERTILIZER:  High Nitrogen
*Deadhead regularly to encourage new blooms!*

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My Top Five…


When I tire of my cookbooks or can’t find what I’m looking for, I often turn to my list of food blogs.  Confession: I also waste an obscene amount of time just looking at pictures of food.  

Here is a list of the blogs that I use most frequently (which explains the drool on my keyboard…)

#5 Smitten Kitchen Always solid–some of the best pastas I’ve ever made have been from SK.  

#4 Canelle et Vanille Ok, so she’s from Spain (love) and she blogs fabulous recipes that are also healthy…but the main reason that I frequent this blog is that her photography is STUNNING (I wasn’t kidding when I said that I am a food gawker)

#3 Pinch My Salt  Many of my go-to salads have come from Pinch My Salt. 

#2  Joy the Baker  Not only is she a fabulous baker, but she has a great sense of humor to boot.  If you’ve ever had dessert at my house, it probably came from this blog (including the Apple Crisp that I made last night from her “Cinnamon: The Greatest Hits” post)  

and drumroll please……

#1  The Pioneer Woman Cooks  I can’t say enough about Ree Drumond. She  has a down-to-earth writing style that makes you feel like you’re talking to a good friend.  And while her recipes are fantastic (check out her Corn Chowder post), I have been known to spend way too much time perusing the various other sections of her blog —“Confessions of a Pioneer Woman” being at the top of that list. 

So there you have it…the next time you’re in a pinch, hit up the blogs.  And as always…feel free to share your favorite blogs, as I thoroughly enjoy food stalking.  The list is ever changing…

(PS– thanks to my friends who have responded with their favorite wines…love hearing from you!)


Filed under blogs, things I like


Happy October!  Welcome cozy sweaters, chai lattes, all things cinnamon,  and RED WINE.  

The Gorge is home to many fantastic wineries and lately my favorites have been by Jacob Williams. Their 2007 Cabernet was just voted “Best Oregon Wine” by the NW Wine Summit.  At $24 a bottle, it is a steal!  Their merlot is also deserving of a shout out.  Ever since Paul Giamatti’s rant in the movie Sideways, I’ve struggled with that particular variety, but Jacob Williams is getting me over the hump.  

Something tells me that it’s going to be a long winter, so I’d love to hear new suggestions from my wine drinking friends!  CHEERS….

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Filed under things I like, wine