Looking for answers to life's questions

It’s been hairy, hectic, and heavy. We’ve had a long week of shifting, shoving and shimmying stuff around.

The pods arrived and so did my former (ex) daughter-in-law. She worked like a trooper in helping my son and I build shelving in the storage unit. When he bought the shelves, I shook my head and shrugged, thinking this man is not playing with a full deck. No, I didn’t say it out loud. I just couldn’t see the picture he had in my own mind.

Just like a tinker toy, The beginning looks nothing like shelving

Just like a tinker toy, The beginning looks nothing like shelving

Once they were together, I had to admire his foresight. My stored stuff was placed on the first set of shelves moving from another location to this one closer to home. Then we had to make quick work to empty the first pod so they could deliver the second. The first one held all the heavy stuff like tools. The rest of the week was so exhausting that we all ate many of our meals out, showered and fell in our beds. Trying to squeeze five bedrooms, 3 baths, a 2 car garage and a shed’s worth of stuff into one bedroom and a 12 by 25 storage building along with my storage building worth of stuff was an exercise in mental hydraulics.

This is all my Christmas and crafts plus more sewing. If I ever get done moving it, I can use it.

This is all my Christmas and crafts plus more sewing. If I ever get done moving it, I can use it.

When the last pod was emptied, we celebrated. My living, dining, sewing room, and kitchen are NOT celebrating. It looks like I just moved in all over again. Next week we will make it better.

One pod empty, one to go and there is still lots of room in here

One pod empty, one to go and there is still lots of room in here

Needing a break, the rest of the time my DIL was here, we wanted to show her some of Portland.

Where do we take visitors who come to our town? Well, my son had to take her to Multnomah Falls. He has photographed it every time he visited here.

One of my favorite of his photos of Multnomah Falls

One of my favorite of his photos of Multnomah Falls

Then of course there is the infamous “Powell’s City of Books”. They spent well over two hours there. I spent a great deal of it in the café watching Portland walk by, buying NO books this time. There is no time to read what I have so more will have to wait. Since they sell new and used, the kids came out with a few, mostly my son. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree when it comes to collecting books.

Don't let the small appearance fool you. You need a map inside as it fills a whole city block

Don’t let the small appearance fool you. You need a map inside as it fills a whole city block

It goes on and on and on

It goes on and on and on

Then my sister met us for a tour of the Pittock Mansion grounds since the Mansion itself was closed for the winter. The view was breathtaking. I mostly enjoyed petting the dogs everyone brought.

My son managed to capture the mansion with no one in front of it.

My son managed to capture the mansion with no one in front of it.

only part of the breath taking view.

only part of the breath taking view.

One of the highlights of our town is that we live in close proximity to Bob’s Red Mill. They ship to stores all over the country and have started serving 3 meals a day. I love having breakfast there so we did. My son found the best ginger cookies I’ve ever eaten.

We timed it just right as they are always busy. They have outdoor seating for those that want to dine with their dogs.

We timed it just right as they are always busy. They have outdoor seating for those that want to dine with their dogs.

You can't miss it driving by.

You can’t miss it driving by.

Row after row of organic everything. They will even teach you how to use it.

Row after row of organic everything. They will even teach you how to use it.

For me a town is a lot about the food and Portland does not disappoint. Since we were in such a jumble anyway, we tried several of the restaurants. The Ram makes the best French fries in the world. I should know, I’ve eaten them everywhere. We stopped by the German deli, Edelweiss, for stuff my DIL needed to bake the German cookies I gave her the recipe for.

One of 4 Gustav's/Rhrinlander's in the Portland area, this one is very close to home

One of 4 Gustav’s/Rhrinlander’s in the Portland area, this one is very close to home

Then to cap off her visit, we had linner (combination lunch and dinner) at Gustav’s German restaurant. She tried the beer sampler with dinner and we all enjoyed the pretzel and cheese fondue. My son, I don’t know where he come from, had a hamburger, while my DIL and I enjoyed more traditional fare. It was LUSCIOUS! I took home a bowl of their lentil soup to see if I can figure out how they make it. Better than mine any day of the week. Of course, my son disagrees. The spaetzle was extra good with a Madeira sauce on them. Mom always used a meat gravy that we loved.

We had a cozier spot.

We had a cozier spot.

We arrived home to pick up the mail at the box up the street from the house. There were stacks of mail for my son and my sister. I had one piece. Just one, and it was happy mail! The Snail of Happiness, who was inspired to do so by The Contented Crafter, sent me snail mail. A happy package filled with her creativeness. We all admired her handiwork. How lucky am I!! Bloggers are wonderful people.

A bouquet of knit roses in wonderful colors

A bouquet of knit roses in wonderful colors


A tiny paper rose was hidden inside, all was placed in star studded organza bag

A tiny paper rose was hidden inside, all was placed in star studded organza bag

The vase of the roses in a perfect shade of blue.

The vase of the roses in a perfect shade of blue.

Now I’m inspired to finish a few projects of my own…as soon as I unearth the sewing room, again.

That’s what I do when I need a break.

At what point do you need a break and how do you go about getting one?

From my heart to yours,
Marlene Herself

Comments on: "In Search of a Break" (34)

  1. Glad you liked it. And now I want to come and visit to sample all those fabulous restaurants!!!

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    • You will be most welcome anytime. I have traveled the world, lived in 3 countries and all over this one. After 35 moves, this is the city I chose to call home. The options are limitless. I must say I have never seen anything so beautifully knit as the rose bouquet. I will think of you each time I see it and as there is a great deal of work to do in my sewing room, I will see it alot. Thank you again for your kindness and generosity.

      Liked by 1 person

    • That flower is adorable! What beautiful colors and such a clever design, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. My mom’s best friend lives in Portland, she’s president of some rose society or some such, so mom went to visit her last summer. Looked like an amazing place to be.

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    • I had a choice of the entire world of where I wanted to live. Rain and all, I found this to be the very best. Especially after living in all 4 corners of this country and many places in the middle. 🙂 I even thought about going back to Germany but it would have been to expensive to ship all my books and fabric and my kids would be too far away. Not that they need me or anything like that. It’s nice having them close. Maybe next time you can come with your mom. The rose gardens are fabulous here.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for sharing your city, Marlene. Oh my gosh, I would love to visit Powell’s Books!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mmmm – I wonder if there is as excellent an arts supplies store as there is that book store!
    I do not know anything much about Portland, so it is nice to see these great places! So happy to see you like your rose pin cushion so much 🙂

    Do hope things are settling down for you, the stuff is getting sorted and you are making a home you love! The storage unit must be a god-send!! xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s actually bigger than necessary so he can pull out tools and work in there. I have no where here at home to do those things. You can get most anything if you know where to look. I’m still learning since I don’t drive much. To be perfectly honest, there is almost nothing I need anymore. I have enough to get me through till the end if I work really fast. :))))
      We are making quick work of things. They would go faster if my ice maker would quit shooting water all over the place. He ordered a part today. It’s nice to have a fix-it man around for awhile. Thank you so much for all your kind efforts. You have a grand heart. Wish I could get to Washington DC to meet you. Maybe another time. Hugs.

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  5. You make me tired Marlene! LOL So glad you got all that done and had some time for fun things. I would love to go wandering through that bookstore! Wow. Now you need to take some ‘me’ time. Relax, rest. Big hugs ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a busy week of working-glad you had time to enjoy the city and eat at some marvelous restaurants. Next time I get to Portland I will have to check them out and maybe we could meet at one of them! ! Heaven only knows when that might be!! My friend took me to a wonderful fabric store in Portland although I cannot think of the name. A huge place with an unassuming exterior. We had such a wonderful time! What a great city. Sounds like you’re going to be busy for a very long time up there just getting to know the area-as well as all the projects you have awaiting you at home! Glad you were able to come home and smell the crocheted roses! How beautiful.

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    • You are thinking of Fabric Depot, my second home! My car knows how to get there alone now.:) You are welcome any time. I had a lot of choices when I started looking for a place to plant roots. This place won, hands down. It’s been raining all week but I just wait till next week and it will be nice like it was last week. I think the secret of Portland is out though. 😦 Those roses were lovely and will find a home in my sewing room, as soon as I can get in there. Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. The places you mentioned are familiar by name and story as I have friends from Portland. Now I can put photos to the places. Those falls are spectacular!

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    • Thank you for stopping by. I know how busy you are these days. Portland is a wonderful city with so much to offer. My son loves to photograph the falls. He’ll have more opportunity now that he’s living here.

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  8. I loved this post, Marlene!

    I’m so sorry you’re working so hard with your move, but it sounds like everything is coming together. The shelving turned out great.

    That waterfall is breathtaking. I would love to see it in person. Have you ever seen the Espresso Book Machine in action in Powell’s Books? I want to have one of my books made with that machine – just to see it happen. 🙂

    The Snail of Happiness was so sweet to send the roses to you. This was a feel-good post!

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    • Thanks for stopping by Maddie. I so appreciate it.

      No, I have not seen the espresso machine but will look for it next time I get down there. Something to look forward too.

      Yes, the snail of happiness is very sweet. The Contented Crafter started and snail mail of happiness aimed at me in honor of my first home of my own. They are all wonderful people.

      I do like to look for the best in life even when it gives us a run for our money. My son’s move was a tough one. I worked hard not to get stressed about it and let things happen as they should.

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  9. Marlene, I just listed a few of the places I would still like to visit and then you go and show all these wonderful attractions in your town. I now have another place on my list to see one day. I love the falls and that view from the castle!!

    Was writing this your way of getting a break from the work? 🙂 I am starting to listen to my body again and rest when it tells me. I’m still a work in progress but I’m getting better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for reading Lois. Those are only the tip of the iceberg. I’d like to see how many are wheelchair accessible. I think most were but the inside of the mansion may not be. I’ll check in the spring.

      The writing took me longer than usual because I was so tired and distracted.

      I’m glad you are resting when you need it. I’ve made it clear to my son that I usually need a short nap daily. I function better after a rest. Now I’m back to a tiny bit of yoga to get my back worked out and build back up. The moves have taken their tole on me. Did nothing for the last 6 months. Keep taking care of yourself. An empty vessel has nothing to give.

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  10. My goodness, that’s a big storage locker. Congratulations on finding one closer to home and enough space to store everything (or almost everything) for the two of you. So lovely that your former daughter in law remains in your life. I’m glad she could come and help,then enjoy the beautiful sites.

    I hope this is the last time you have to rent storage space, Marlene. And yes, those shelves worked really well.

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    • Thanks for reading Alys. Yes, it’s huge. That way he can pull out the saw or tools he needs to work on things. Gives us walking around room to sort through. We are both still purging but if you can’t get to it, you can’t get rid of it.
      My ex-daughter-in-law was very helpful. My son still helps her most days as tech support on the phone. He’s very good at it and there is no one else to help her. I’m glad they can be friends. I like her, they just don’t mesh full time.
      I’m hoping you got some of the rain we have here.

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      • Marlene, we did get some rain. Honest to goodness, puddle forming rain. We have a break today, then another storm tonight or tomorrow. The air is so fresh and clean.

        I love that your son can remain friends. Relationships take work and can be hard, even when well-suited. How wonderful that they can strike this kind of balance.

        Great thinking having move around room. I didn’t know you could actually work in one of those lockers. You’ve planned beautifully.

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  11. Now I see what you have been up to Marlene! A very, very busy time, phew! Oh I do understand too. When I moved from California back to the UK with my three kids, I went from a 2,800 sq ft house with 4 beds, three baths and three car garage into my mother’s English house where we all stayed, and what was left of our worldly possessions shipped across the Atlantic in a crate, the belongings of which were stored in our family friend’s, living room for 6 months until I managed to secure a house rental suitable for us all. When I remarried we removed everything into an even tighter spot, our house is small but we do have a garage (single of course!), a loft/attic which hubby utilised by placing boards on the floor so a lot of storage up there and a garden shed and of course my summerhouse. Phew :/ We never use the garage for the car, it’s full of the kid’s stuff. Neither of my boys are married and still fairly transitory with their living arrangements, although Eldest Son does alteast share a house with his live-in girlfriend. And of course my daughter still lives at home with us. And as for the Christmas decs, don’t get me started! I’m sure I have just the same amount as you …all up in the loft, haha 😀 No wonder you are exhausted, and eating out at such times is the only way to go. And I rememeber staying overnight in Portland once on our way from California to Hermiston. I would love to re-visit one of these days, such a fascinating place, loved your photos, what a spectacular waterfall. The ex has recently moved to Grant’s Pass. He loves it. Says it reminds him of England… 😉 Have a lovely, relaxing (I hope) weekend and thanks again for keeping in touch with me, your visits always brighten my day and I am only sorry I have taken so long to get over here but so glad I did 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for stopping by Sherri. I know how busy you are. We have lots of spectacular views. My son is better at the photography than I am.

      I know what you mean about the downsizing. When I ended my marriage, I left a 2800 sq. ft. home, 2 1/2 car garage on 3/4 of an acre and packed my stuff into a 26 ft u-haul. Sold a lot of it the first year to live off that bits of money. I shuttled between my sister and daughter staying a few days each until I could get a small apartment. Those were hard times for a woman unwell and unable to drive more than around the block. I’ve come a long way too.

      Grants pass is a lovely small town. Stayed there several times as I traveled up and down the coast. They get more snow than we do. A lot more!

      Hope things are moving along better for you now. We will both catch up soon. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • You certainly have come a long way baby 🙂 Things are coming along, thank so much for asking Marlene. Hugs… ❤ xo

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  12. Great post, Marlene! When I have visitors, we do the same spots of course: Multnomah Falls, Powells, Pittock Mansion. You have a finger on the pulse of restaurants though. I have been too poor/busy/parenting to go out much in the years I’ve lived here, and I really don’t have a good handle on places to eat. You’ll have to tell me about the German places when we meet for coffee.

    I’m so glad the pods are emptied and now it’s one less thing to deal with. Too bad you can’t have all your sewing stuff easily available, but…it will happen eventually.

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    • Thanks for reading Crystal. I can certainly tell you all about restaurants. After 50 years of cooking, I love nothing more than to eat out. I usually go once a week with my daughter for our time together. My sister is the one to keep me abreast of places to visit. She has lived here since 1977. Driving for Tri-met for 15 years helped too. She knows this whole area like the back of her hand.

      My sewing room will be functional soon. My son is building shelves to help organize my stuff. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. !!! OMgosh, how have I missed your post for so long? I just came by to see why no news from Wonderfrau and here I see you’ve been uber busy. Your storage shed is looking fantastic. We are hoping to completely empty ours very soon. It’s expensive and nothing much of worth is left in there, still a big job I’m not looking forward too.
    We toured inside the Pittock Mansion when we were in Portland for Mary Poppin’s. It’s really lovely and nicely refurbished. We were there in June and the drive up was nice too. We also went to the Rose Garden on the same day. I wish we’d known about the falls. They’re stunning.
    I’m off to an art class this morning. It’s at our store! It’s a new Journalling class that will go each month this year. I can’t wait to learn new tricks and I adore the instructor. I actually work with her too and we have so much fun.
    Hope things have calmed down for you. Looking forward to spring now! xoxoxo Luv K

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    • Oh my. It sounds like you are having barrels of fun. Don’t let the green of my envy drip on you. We will tour the inside of the mansion sometime in the spring or summer months. My sister was shocked when she found out she had not as yet taken me there in all the years I’ve visited. Have been to the rose gardens several times. My son will have to store his things until he is ready for another place of his own. For now, mine will fit into a back corner until such time as I finally get the opportunity to go through the stuff. In the meantime, we are both still purging excess. My sewing room is getting some organization so life is good. We have had such a mild winter this year. We will miss the snow pack when it’s time to water lawns. Glad you are getting your things sorted out so you can save money for good stuff, like crafting things. :))))

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