Wednesday, July 6, 2011

What I've been up to

Oh my gosh, it's been nearly a month since I've written! I've been busy settling in and enjoying Portland, but of course that means I've been putting off blogging for far too long.

Our drive up to Portland was exhausting but went really well, in that everything made it up in 1 piece and we didn't have any significant Penske-truck-pulling-a-trailer mishaps, but Dr. Hubby swears that he will never drive a moving truck again!

Our apartment is wonderful and nearly done- once I hang up our pictures and figure out where to store the colony of computer related cords living in the corner of our front room I'll post a bunch of pictures. :) I love it because we actually managed to avoid cramming every inch of it with furniture. Having a bit of space makes it feel very peaceful. That being said, we still feel like we have too much stuff and took another car load of things to goodwill once we got here. I also love our location- Munjoy Hill feels a lot like the Marigny in New Orleans and we are close to the water, a gorgeous park, tons of restaurants, a coffee shop, and a gourmet/healthy food market.

Portland is amazing. Living here right now really does feel like being on vacation. My "office" is a sunroom that had a great view of Casco Bay and I walk my dogs in the Eastern Promenade (a big park leading down to the bay) every day. I've taken them down to the beach a few times but they are horrified by the fact that the water moves! They really love being in the park though and when it's not crowded we take them off their leashes and let them run back and forth between us. Bernie, lazy creature that he is, kind of gamely trots along until he gets too tired, but Hereaux SPRINTS with this big doggie grin on his face. He is in doggie heaven here!

Eastern Promenade after a rain

The happiest I've ever seen my dogs

I've found a lot of things I love about Portland already- The weather, of course, is perfect. I've also joined a yoga studio that I really love, I run a weekly 5K race (and have plans to run many more races), I've gone to to Farmer's Market and tried every strange veggie I found (fiddleheads! kohlrabi! salad greens with edible flowers! garlic scapes!), I've done a First Friday Art Walk, I watched the 4th of July Fireworks over the Prom from my porch, I've eaten at a lot of great restaurants, and I've cooked some pretty good meals here as well. And of course, the only pictures I've taken have been of dogs and food. :)

Fiddleheads! (and grilled chicken)

Periwinkles- aka snails! I basically pulled these out of a tide pool and boiled them- they were tasted like clams!

Speaking of clams- this guy was the size of my palm. Divine paired with fresh bread from the Standard Baking Co.

I also really like how environmentally friendly Portland is. Gone are the days of having to drive to find a place to recycle (and only being able to recycle newspapers). We have free curbside recycling and we definitely generate more recycling than actual trash because they take everything. It's awesome. Less awesome is having to pay $1 per special trash bag to get rid of our trash, but in all honesty, I appreciate the incentive to not just throw away stuff. Because we are total cheapos, we've also started a compost bin (despite the fact that I have a black thumb and kill every plant I try to grow) and I have been saving a bag of veggie scraps in the freezer for stock. I actually made my first veggie stock on Monday and plan to make chicken stock from the bones of last night's roast chicken tomorrow.

Working at home is going pretty well- I've been able to meet or exceed all of my deadlines so far and I really enjoy wearing yoga pants all the time, eating omelets whenever I want to, and painting my nails unprofessional colors. :) It can feel a little isolating but I'm making a point to actually leave the house every day (and walking the dogs doesn't count) which helps me feel more connected to the outside world.

In the next few weeks I'm looking forward to camping in Acadia National Park (Dr. Hubby talked me into getting us new tent and me a sleeping bag), running more races, going to the Farmer's Market more regularly (I've missed the past 2 weeks), doing a walking tour of the Hidden Gardens of Munjoy Hill, and taking a trip back to New Orleans for work (I need my boudin fix!). I'll also be going to D.C. soon to visit friends, and will be celebrating my 30th birthday in NYC with my inlaws since my brother-in-law is turning 3o three days after I do!

There are a lot of things I want to do but don't have concrete plans for too- trail running, getting out on the water (be it in a kayak, paddle board or real boat, I'm not picky!), skiing and snowshoeing this winter, and making friends and workout buddies.

Overall, I miss my family and friends but am incredibly thrilled to finally living in Portland. I still walk around and think to myself- I can't believe I actually live here. :) So far, the adventure is going well!

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