Saturday, August 18, 2007

People, Places, Dogs and Yarn

Oregon Coast
Our 25th anniversary deserved more than just a dinner, but with two big trips planned for 2007 (Scotland in May and Hawai'i in October), we opted for a quick getaway and headed for the Oregon coast.

Since I'm the planner in our family, Tom made some suggestions about towns to visit, but left it to me sort out where we'd stay. We'd decided early on that the dogs would go with us, but with the loss of Cody, it was just Mandy. I found a site with a list of dog-friendly lodgings and after lots of site visits, settled on the Fireside Motel in Yachats (pronounced YAH-hots). Once we arrived, we both agreed that I'd made a good decision. Mandy was happy as long as she was with us, though truth be told she'd rather have been with us in the comfort of her own house.

We left on Monday and could not have asked for a better day. We took 99W through McMinnville and on to Lincoln City, where we took a break and walked on the beach.

Checking into the Fireside Motel, we received a pet package consisting of a sheet, towel, mat and several scooper bags. Mandy was set. In town we met a local dog, Sam.

We'd booked an ocean view room and were not disappointed with the view. Behind the motel is the 3/4 mile 804 Trail, that goes along the coast, with benches and tables visitors can sit and enjoy the ocean in addition to exploring the rocks and tidepools.

We headed south to Florence on Tuesday, where we escaped the fog that had rolled in between the time I took Mandy out on her early morning walk and Tom got up. In Old Town my first stop was Reigning Cats and Dogs, which had a great selection of doggy things for people. Our next stop, was the Siuslaw Coffee Roasters where I found out that Siuslaw is pronounced "sigh-YEW-slaw" and we bought some yummy cakey fruit pastries. There was a name, but I don't remember it, but they were very dense and reminded us of a cross between shortbread and cake with fruit, a crumb topping with coconut. Again, yum.

I remembered seeing or reading about Mo's clam chowder, so on the way back to the car stopped by and got clam chowder, fresh bread and cole slaw to go. Good timing on our part because as i sat with Mandy, there was a crowd gathering outside for lunch. It was a good lunch.

On Wednesday, we headed south again to take the Eugene-Florence road home. Just north of Florence is a big "YARN" sign, so we had to stop. Happy Kampers Yarn Shop has a very large selection of yarns you'd find in big box stores, but upstairs I found a brand I'd never seen before and some wool that was just too pretty to pass up.

Sometime ago I'd found a link to Dyelots so we planned the one stop in Eugene. I was greeted by Janis as she cut mint in the side yard of the house for a visitor, then led into the house and to the yarn. She had mostly fiber, but there were beautiful yarns spun up, and this is what I brought home.

There are more pictures from the trip here.

Tacoma and Seattle
My mom lives in Sun City West, AZ and we have been trying to get her to spend some summer time away. A snowbird friend, Barbata, invited her to visit in Tacoma and the proximity to Portland finally convinced her to leave the heat for awhile. It's less expensive to fly in and out of PDX, so I made all the arrangements and on Thursday she arrived with Tootsie and we were off to Tacoma.

Barbara found some toys for Tootsie, who really wanted to play, but in the end was just too tired.

See more of Tootsie.

After spending a few hours enjoying Barbara's view of the Olympic Peninsula and Tacoma Narrows bridge, we headed north to meet Jud and Karrie for dinner at Camelita. The food was fabulous. It's vegetarian, but very creative "savory fare."

We arrived a little early but not problem because I had scoped out the yarn store situation and found the Fiber Gallery just a few blocks away. It was a good find. They had probably as good a book selection as I've ever seen. I'd venture to say that you could find just about any knitting book currently in print, and a few that are out of print. The yarn consisted of a lot of unusual fibers (banana leaf, corn, hemp, nettle, bamboo). In the end I bought more the more traditional fiber of merino in the form of hand painted Malabrigo lace yarn. The picture doesn't do the colors justice. The left hank is plummy while the right is mostly a chocolate brown with blues painted in.