This was one of those weekends that totally snuck up on us, but when it was over, I kept saying "I'm SOOO glad we did that." I had reserved a night at McMenamin's Edgefield Lodge outside of Portland - it was supposed to be a "girls weekend" with Amy and Liz coming down from Seattle, but Liz's summer travel plans took her to Belize instead (yea, tough choice on that one!). Instead of cancel our reservation, we decided to make it a family weekend. I have a friend that has described Edgefield as "a grown-up playground," and she is totally right. It's an old Poor Farm and later nursing home that the McMenamin brothers have renovated in their signature style. It now has a hotel, winery, brewery, distillery, ice creamery, soaking pools, a spa, golf course, movie theater, a nice restaurant, and several other "food spots" tucked throughout the property. I've never stayed at a hotel where everyone is just milling around, chatting with other guest and generally just having FUN!
We put Owen down in our room, and then spent time out on one of the decks drinking beer (Scott), eating ice cream (me), and watching the sunset. Scott figured out that our monitor would even reach to the pool hall, but we never got that far. The best part? We were in an upstairs room of the lodge with just one TINY window, so it stayed totally dark and Owen slept in until 8:15 AM! Glorious. The second best part? Our room was only $99/night. Yes, it's a "European style" hotel, so you have to walk down the hall to a shared bathroom, but even that was pleasantly surprising. It's really just an area of each floor with 6-8 individual bathrooms grouped together (accommodating old plumbing), rather than the dormitory style bathrooms we were both expecting. Bottom line: try Edgefield if you're looking for a place to stay near Portland.
Anyway, we went to Portland with two purposes:
Our Ikea trip was successful in that we purchased a toddler bed, mattress, and matching dresser for Owen (and a couple new lamps for ourselves). The visit was also a the predictable headache that you would expect with a nearly two year old who had spent the last 3 hours in the car and then dragged through Ikea land for 2 hours. We survived, and I'm THRILLED with Owen's new furniture... just have to build it... and dismantle our guest room to make room for it... and... and... and... don't expect pictures for a few more months.
The zoo, on the other hand, was fabulous. Owen loved seeing all the animals, and we planned our route to hit the big stuff (elephants, bears, primates, etc) first and then had a wonderful encounter with the sea lions and otters on our way out the gate. We enjoyed our visit last September, this was even more exciting because Owen could run from exhibit to exhibit, name some of the animals, and provide his own commentary. Plus, after 2 1/2 hours, he was so exhausted, that he was asleep before we hit the freeway and snoozed for almost 2 hours of of our 4 hour drive home. And now, here are the zoo pics...
Outside the warty hogs ("Pigs!" yelled Owen):
Dancing on the concert lawn after lunch:
Helping to groom the goats:
Checking out the "striped horses"
Looking for giraffes (but all we could see were the gazels). Aparently a lot of the animals also need an afternoon nap.