Wednesday, October 1, 2014


We were told by several people that the International Rose Test Garden was a great spot to check out while in Portland.

I've never seen so many flowers in one place! The roses and the gardens were absolutely beautiful, of course, but the feeling of being in the midst of all of the rows of rosebushes and was actually incredible. You can lose yourself literally and lose yourself with wonder. It felt like I was in a fantasy story (which is my favorite genre of books, so I was completely happy with this). Even Mark loved it. It's hard not to.

There are over 7000 rose plants of about 550 varieties. There are mini roses that are the size of a quarter and there are giant ones that bloom as big as my head. So many colors, so many shapes...and so many smells. I've never been a fan of the typical red rose scent, but I LOVED smelling the roses here, since each type of rose has a different scent.

I could probably stay here for days. It's free to visit, and there are tons of places to lounge around either in the shade or in the sun, and even some places with a great view of downtown Portland. I'd just bring a book and some sustenance and I'd be set for days! ;)

You can tell how much I love it in a photo below where I'm actually hugging a rosebush. Silly Bailey.

[All photos were taken in August 2014.]

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Sunday, September 28, 2014


One of the first things I start researching when visiting a city is where to eat. But this time I was going to Portland! And if you don't know why that's exciting, here's an equation to make you understand: Portland = LOTS OF YUMMY FOOD.

I think I ate 6 meals the first full day I was there. Not including dessert. (Not ashamed.) It's just so easy for me to find food in Portland, even though I'm a gluten-free vegetarian. It was awesome.

One of the restaurants we found was Teote. Teote features Latin American street food, including arepas, which are basically my favorite things to eat ever. Somehow I seem to find arepas almost everywhere I go (not really, but so far in Albuquerque, Houston, Las Vegas, Puerto Rico, and now in Portland).

Teote is in a great location and has a great upstairs bar/patio area. A great thing about Teote is that everything is naturally and authentically gluten-free. The line out the door proved that you don't have to have gluten for food to be delicious!

We ended up eating here twice while in Portland. That's how good it was! And you MUST get the fried plantains (if they're ripe) and especially the arepitas on the appetizers list.

Hope you get to enjoy Teote one day! (Oh, and did you see that photo of Mark striking a pose? He's such a cheeseball!)

[All photos were taken in August 2014.]

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Thursday, September 25, 2014


I've never done night-time skyline shots, and I had read that Portland was a great city in which to try them out.

I've also heard that my own city, Austin, is great for night-time skyline photos, but I've never tried. I need to because, as you can see, I'm not that great at them yet. Some are a little out of focus.

A city with a river, lake, or ocean front is a great city to do night-time skyline photos, because you get that silky texture of the water as well as great reflections of colorful light. A place like New York City proves for some amazing night-time skyline shots because of the easy access across the East River from the skyline, the great reflections, and the interesting buildings and bridges.

I'm glad I tried this for the first time in Portland. It was fun to do, especially the part when we ran into some high-school kids hanging out on a dock. :)

[All photos were taken in August 2014.]

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