So worn out today. It has felt like we have been at a run for the past two weeks. CK's brother, house guests, Atari's passing, tattoos, big shopping expedition, then days of activity around Open Source Bridge, parties, and the Heart of Wisdom Zen Temple Founder's Dinner (which I helped out at). On top of all the busyness of the past couple of weeks I've not been sleeping really well, neither has CK.
I'd woke up early and sat zazen, planning to head into the office. I felt generally exhausted, had a headache and was generally nauseous. I opted to work from home and dragged myself, with as much mindful attention as I could muster, to meetings. I was grateful to head over to an appointment with Beth for a massage.
I warned her I might fall asleep on her, but some of my muscles were so bunched up and tight that it would have been impossible to doze off. The pain in my left shoulder and back reminded me how grateful I was to have ordered a new bag on Saturday. My beat to heck bag from Vy & Elle is not good to carry around even my ultra-light laptop. I felt merely tired when she was done, some of the thick fog of exhaustion had let up a little.
Had told E I'd take her yoga mats back to her this evening but was enjoying making dinner with CK and just didn't feel like leaving the house. She got the marvelous artichokes we picked up at the King Farmers Market on Sunday ready and researched how to do them in the pressure cooker (cut in half, 8 minutes, yum). She also made a balsamic vinaigrette to dip them in. I sauteed the stems of the rapini we'd picked up, added all the green tops and balsamic to steam. I caramelized half a sweet onion then added a whole, heirloom tomato with some more balsamic to make a simple sauce. I tried making steamed amaranth, but it came out something between porridge and polenta, but stickier. Despite the not-what-I-was-going-for texture the amaranth was still tasty, especially paired with the onions, tomatoes, vinegar & mustard-y rapini. We are all fired up to experiment further with it, amaranth is another "super grain".
Today we slept it, which felt wonderful!
Once we all were up and showered we decided upon Vita Cafe (really like the new space) for a big breakfast and then up to the Downtown/PSU Farmer's Market. It meant we got there past noon, much later than either CK and I usually get to the market. We were not very surprised to see that some stalls didn't have as much left.
Musicians were all around the perimeter of the market and the band that was playing in the center was awesome! We quickly picked out some asparagus then looked around for rapini (none to be found, sadly). Since we hadn't found rapini we decided to get some chard. I also grabbed a small bunch of spring red onions - shining red bulbs and stiff green shoots. Some vegan basil, garlic, mint pesto was sampled and purchased for dinner later. I also got some fiddlehead ferns to try out.
CK and I picked out some more starts for the garden. She found a yellow watermelon and a spaghetti squash. We also got two types of lettuce and some red choi. Then vendor at that stall had a broken Italian bush bean (1 out of 6 starts in the tray was damaged) that she gave to us free!
The last two chocolate panini at the Pearl Bakery booth were purchased and then we decided to get a "soda" made from fresh raspberries, lemonade and mineral water. This was very refreshing and tasty. We enjoyed these while heading over to Pearl Bakery to see if we could get a round boule of their multi-grain bread. They didn't have any left so we picked out a cibatta to go with the veggies with dinner later.
Brought the market goodies back to the house and decided to drive up the Gorge a little bit since NR has never seen it. As we drove past falls we made a spur of the moment decision to continue east to Hood River. Once there we went to the Full Sail Brewery and had a late lunch with beer. Then down to the river to watch the windsurfers and kite-boarders.
Back to the house CK and I worked on the yard a bit. I planted seeds for various lettuces and greens as well as the starts from the market. Still need to find homes for 3 more of the bush beans. CK leveled out the area by the compost pile so that she can make mounds for all the winter squash and melons.
Then inside for a late dinner of grilled, baked tofu & tempeh with pesto. Chard sauteed with the red onion and a little minced garlic in olive oil, tossed with balsamic. Seared, steamed asparagus with sea salt. Plus crispy slices of garlic bread. All of it was so delicious.
Made for a long day, but it was a lot of fun showing off our city and state. I really enjoyed being able to go from the Farmer's Market to a delicious dinner later. That CK & I also managed to squeeze in a little garden time ourselves was very cool.
When I got back to the flat after teaching my Sunday yoga class CK had decided we were going to Sauvie Island to explore, maybe pick some berries, and take pictures. The day was warm, sunny and beautiful out. We snacked on the leftover tempeh and I threw together some of the barley, some balasamic vinaigrette CK had made, and fresh veggies so we had a salad. We packed a couple of apples as well as the salad into a bag so we could have a snack lunch later.
We drove around, just enjoying the beauty of the day, and finally decided we'd drive across one end of the island and go to Columbia River beach side. We parked and walked around a pasture for a while, looking at the cows, a couple of snakes, a woolly caterpillar, and lots of birds. It was a lot of fun just to walk along talking. We discussed ideas about working with online writing, which is this wonderful meeting of our technology and creative interests. I really enjoy that CK wants to share this with me too.
Headed back to the little red truck and headed back around the loop we'd selected. We made our way to Columbia Farms where we decided to have our lunch/snack and got an empty half-flat along with directions to the rows of raspberries. After we finished our snack we got to picking berries for about 40 minutes.
I was surprised CK had never done this before. Mom and I would often go to u-pick places and farm stands for produce. She enjoyed that connection back to her childhood in the country as well as the inexpensive aspect. The bees, busy with the flowers and berries still thick on the canes, were a little unnerving to CK, but she gamely picked berries. Each of us stopping to eat a few as we went. Oh, raspberries just picked, still warm from the sun, and the half flat for under $5!
From there we went on to the Pumpkin Patch where we purchased half a dozen different winter squash. We also bought a bag of still warm kettle corn and sat on a bench watching all the birds in the sun flowers, munching and planning a future visit, closer to Halloween. Eventually, half a bag eaten, we made ourselves close up the kettle corn and headed back to Portland.
AM and I finally both got up, got dressed and went over to the Hollywood District this morning. I was on a mission to buy produce for us and CK. She was attending WordCampPDX so I had her list of produce to pick up. High on the list were more apples from Kiyokawa Orchards, Romanesco broccoli, greens, beets, broccoli, carrots, and anything else that appealed to me!
I love putting together dinner around what looks most appealing at the market.
Slept in until 8:30 this morning, which is pretty late for me. It was nice to sleep until I woke up, including waking up for a moment at a few minutes before 7AM and getting to go back to sleep. AM and I stumbled around, took showers, I got together all the stuff I'd be taking with me later, and then we made our way to the Hollywood Farmers Market so I could get more apples.
I headed to the Hollywood Farmers' Market today on a mission -- apples from Kiyokawa Family Orchards. I found the apples were in and immediately stuffed several in the bags along with a couple of pears that will ripen in a few days. I asked about the particularly delicious, but very short seasoned, Pink Pearl variety, they usually are only in for a couple of weeks at the beginning of September. I was told another week, week & a half. The season is off to a late start with our cold, damp year.
AM & I both slept quite late for us, it was past 8:30 when we woke up. I wrote a little about what I'd had in my mind when I went to sleep the night before; the chanting entry. A discussion about going to Seven Virtues for coffee expanded to include a foray to the farmers' market to see if apples were there yet.
Apples are one of my favorite types of fruit and when they start really coming into season it is wonderful enjoying them. Every year I look forward to a particular family orchard bringing apples to the market.
Listening to Big Blue Ball finally. Hearing snippets about it for the past 15+ years it is a real pleasure to finally hear it. AM felt that perhaps some songs showed a little age having sat around on tape for years. I've found the songs range pretty wildly, which is to be expected. One hit me a little off but that's more likely due to listening to it after a yoga class, dinner and after 9PM when I'm feeling a little more chill.