Portland Picks Website presenting
  life + style to you: every Friday
June 16th, 2006

A wise man once told us that if we think life goes by quickly now, we should hold on to our hats – every coming year will pass with more speed than the last. Of course, when we heard this we were 19 years old and days still had that beautiful quality of seeming long – even endless. Now, we contemplate an afternoon of running errands, doing a little yard work, and meeting friends for dinner as if it was an entire semester of economics classes that we have to complete in one week. Due to the “whizzing by” factor of what should be a lazy Sunday, just dropping by a few places – even for fun – can loom in our minds as an enormous “thing” we “only” have an afternoon to achieve. Is it that there isn’t enough time in the day? Or do we just need a vacation? … Wouldn’t it be nice to stop the world – just for a couple of hours?


Portland Picks:


School’s Out...Let’s Play

Let’s set up a play date.  No, not for the kids, for us girls.  Well okay, them, too.  There’s the cutest indoor play park in Lake Oswego, all fresh and clean and “normal.”  Not one of those germy snotty infested joints.  And it’s situated in the heart of Lakeview Village in Lake Oswego (on the lake).  Nothing but the finest for little Susie and Jimmy.  And you, Mommy Dearest, can hobnob with others and make new friends.  And even better, you can drop the kiddles off and go shopping at Meringue, Grapevine, and Urbane Zen, or lunch at Zeppo across the street, or maybe you’d prefer a little well-deserved pampering at our all time fave Rumi Simone Spa...and know your kids are in good hands.  They even have date night, or Mom’s Happy Hour, so you can drop the little ones off Friday evenings and dine lakefront at Blinn’s Boathouse and know your child is having just as much fun as you are.  

Who needs a babysitter when you have The Play Boutique?  And if you’re hungering for other big people company join the group for weekly get togethers and chit chat while the little ones burn off all that crazy energy.   And even better, this is not time wasted.  The Play Boutique is stimulating, providing edutainment (educational fun) from highly trained professionals and educators.  Your child can cook, sing, learn and of course play while you do!  As far as play dates go, this is top banana for your little monkeys.  Check them out and sign up fast.

The Play Boutique
332 First Street
Lake Oswego, OR 97034
In the Jazzercise Fitness Center
Next to Wizers, across from Lakeview Village




Close Knit

We found our new favorite knitting store, and although we are totally lame, we love the Zen-cool idea of curling up and knitting.  We’d be even cooler if we could make something for real, like that we could actually wear and brag about (“Oh, this old thing? I made it.”)  Something that was actually, well, something.   (Thus far we haven’t knitted anything except these asymmetrical loopy squares which couldn’t even pass as measly potholders.)  But we’re relentless, and practice makes perfect. And Close Knit has created events that can keep us,  and you, and your new close-knit knitting friends, knitting.

In addition to the wonderful space at Close Knit, filled with lush yarns and design ideas, they have all kinds of summer activities, kinda like knitting camp for grownups.  But if knitting camp is not your idea of fun, they also have a new weekly social knitting event each Saturday morning called “Lawn Chair Knitting.”  That's right, bring a lawn chair and your summer project and spend Saturday mornings outside this cute shop from 10 to noon.  They are looking forward to 22nd and Alberta being filled with lawn-chair knitters. The kick-off was last Saturday, the 10th, which was "National Knit in Public Day" (but of course).  Check them out this Saturday and BYOLC.   Morning goodies await!

Close Knit
2140 NE Alberta Street
Portland OR, 97211





Find Your Sole Mate

We love our shoes and shopping for shoes.  But some days we feel like just putting our feet up and kickin’ back with our laptop. Sometimes it’s nice to shop online, versus actually getting out of our jammies and dealing with the malls and the perky salespeople.  But we also like to buy local and support the small, clever businessfolks right here.  And now we can at Solestruck.com, a great homegrown website with an amazing selection of designer shoes; shoes and styles from Kenneth Cole, BCBG, Nina Devin, Steve Madden and more.  

Solestruck has this season’s must haves, too: Shoe styles that recall classic 1950's European charm and renew the sexy pin-up inspired fashions of the mid 1970's; boldly colorful kicks that are enhanced with touches of metal and patent leather; round-toe pumps and ballet flats with romantic ruffles and light lacy cutouts. Make a statement with your shoes this spring and find all the season's must haves at Solestruck.  So get shopping girl, you’ve got to support the ecomony.  There are shoes to be had.






Dining at the Carlyle
We didn’t want to go somewhere fussy and fusty for a celebratory dinner, but we didn’t want business as usual, either. We needed special, yo. So we hit Carlyle last Saturday night, and boy oh boy, was it just the place. The room is dark, but not so dark that we’d need glasses to read the menu and thus age ourselves 50 years—more the dark where everyone is sexy and noir. Even the bathrooms are done right (don’t you hate it when you love the restaurant but the bathrooms are ick?)
And not only were we comped champagne (and later, port) by our truly excellent waiter, the food was as memorable as the event we were celebrating. Crab risotto, buttery and chunky with mushrooms; a precise beet salad; lamb cooked perfectly; salmon surrounded by crab gnocchi and vegetable noodles. The wine list? Fitting. The martinis? Perfect.
We chanced rolling out of there and ordered dessert—carrot cake the size of a brick and tasting like heaven. And we were as reverent to the fried blueberry cobbler as Homer Simpson is to donuts.
Even if you’re not up for a splurgy dinner, Carlyle’s got a lunch menu with similar items, as well as $1 martinis on Mondays (makes them a little less manic) and half-price on some of their bar menu Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Go and feel sexy.
1632 NW Thurman St.
Portland, OR 97209



Get Your Plant On
Some of us have moved here from varying environs—let’s say, hypothetically, from a New York 5th floor walkup apartment, where we green-thumbed our way through little pots of oregano, mint, and catnip for our feline companion. Deer and rabbits weren’t the problems—instead we had crazy mafia squirrels that ate our cherry tomatoes. So gardening in these far more fertile climes is something that we’re still getting accustomed to.
Though it may be a little obvious, have you checked out Portland Nursery? No, really, have you? There’s a reason it’s so big. It’s got everything. It’s not just a plant warehouse, either; there’s always something going on. We were there the first weekend of the Strawberry Social and were serenaded by a bluegrass band as we, well, thumbed through bluegrass. Kids played in haystacks, couples snuggled under maples, elderly women picked through huckleberries.
And they’re so nice. When we gave them weird requests like “I want something red but not too bushy and will fit in a container that may need to be moved around a lot and no roses please,” they found just the plant we never knew we wanted. Seriously, we haven’t been this excited about blooms since we conducted that avocado pit experiment in first grade.  Even if you you’re an avowed cactus-killer, there’s something for you at Portland Nursery. We swear.
Portland Nursery
Division Street Store
9000 SE Division St.
Portland, OR 97266
Stark Street Store
5050 SE Stark St.
Portland, OR 97215




To Market, to Market

If you’re like us, shopping for groceries is somewhat of a chore. First you survey the pantry, then you make the list, then you haul your cookies down to the store and plop item after item into your cart, almost blindly navigating the aisles. Oh, it’s so dull. We have been known to beg our Signif Others to do the deed for us…but it always involves giving a backrub in return, so it’s not exactly a win-win.
And then we discovered a little gem of a store on Fremont called Beaumont Market. They not only have glorious produce and aisles and aisles of “the good stuff” like naturally raised chicken and beef, fresh pastas, and a small but excellent selection of Northwest wines, but they have “gifty” stuff, too. So you can get your groceries and get your shop on!
From delish-smelling soaps, candles and bath gels to fun kitchen accessories (we love the rubber gloves with cute fabric trim to dress them up), you’ll find knick-knacks and trinkets and small decorative items that make it less of a grocery store and more of a fun event. We took the parents there and they loved it – we got our peaches, Mom picked out soaps, Dad perused the flavored sodas – everyone was happy.
Beaumont Market
4130 NE Fremont St.
Portland, OR 97212




Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Shop!

We have some friends who can totally do the garage sale thing, but we just can’t embrace it. We love a good thrift store and we get palpitations when we happen upon a vintage-clothing store, but the prospect of rooting around in someone’s front yard for old knick-knacks just isn’t for us.
Which is why we adore Rerun – it’s like a fun garage sale/thrift store/vintage store where the good stuff has been picked out for you. They also do consignment, and you can schedule an appointment to bring in your treasures. Plus they sell clothing by local designers who have reworked choice vintage items, and handcrafted goods by local artisans – everything from paintings to jewelry. And if you make or create something good, there’s a chance they’ll consign it for you! So Rerun could be your big break!
You’ll find everything from groovy glass vases to cool leather jackets and fun furniture, and the most appealing assortment of whatnot and tchochkes – everything from a huge owl cookie jar to tablecloths from India and teacups from England. Better than a front yard, any day.
707 NE Fremont St.
Portland, OR  97212


Shopping for a New Home?

Some things are easy to shop for, like pretty much anything in a grocery store.  Your options are right there in front of you so comparing and contrasting is a piece of cake.  Too bad that’s not the case when you’re buying a home!  Imagine if it was as easy as choosing between the chocolate frosting or the vanilla creme.  (We are so loving the cake theme!)  But seriously, you can even factor in a dozen different brands and prices, and that still has nothing – nothing! – on the daunting task of finding the perfect home.
If you’re in the market, or know someone who is, call Tracy Knofczynski at Century 21 Peninsula Realty.  Century 21 has been a part of the community for more than 30 years, and their agents really get to know their clients.  Picture it like this: in the home-buying market, Tracy will stock the shelves for you, and all you have to do is browse and choose your favorite! Well, kind of…let’s not kid ourselves…buying a house takes time, patience, perseverance and an open mind, but it’s so much easier with a professional like Tracy in your corner.
Tracy can also help sell your home, too!  She will get your home online on www.century21.com, and the Century 21 System will maximize your home’s exposure through its global referral network, regional advertising and internet marketing program.
Whether you’re looking to sell a home, to find that perfect classic home, or even if you’re a first-time buyer, call Tracy Knofczynksi at Century 21 Peninsula Realty.  And tell her Portland Picks sent you!
Tracy Knofczynski
Century 21 Peninsula Realty
6110 N. Lombard St.
Portland, OR 97203




Understand Men 101: Making Sense of Men

We will never understand men, right? Thankfully,  for us and for them, there is hope. PAX Programs presents their fantastic three-hour introductory seminar designed to provide women with a better understanding of themselves, and of men. Understand Men 101: Making Sense of Men is for women who want to have fun while learning more about men. It’s for women who are in a relationship, who want a relationship, or who just want to discover what might have gone wrong in the past.

  • Recognize and interpret the behaviors that might sabotage your chance with the man you desire.
  • Decode the “secret” language men use to say they care
  • Make sense of the past. Learn to take control of your future.
  • Find out more about the Celebrating Men, Satisfying Women Workshop and receive great specials only offered at this event!

Understand Men 101 – free if you reserve now!
Thursday, June 22
More dates available on their website
7-10 p.m.
Portland Hilton & Executive Towers
To make reservations, visit www.PAXPrograms.com or call 800.418.9924, ext. 2



  CD of the Week:"Eyes Open” by Snow Patrol

It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since Snow Patrol released Final Straw, with its Coldplay-esque single, “Run.”  Well, it was definitely worth the wait! With the band’s newly released fourth album, Eyes Open, Snow Patrol proves that they are a force to be reckoned with, making good on the promise shown in Final Straw

Eyes Open came into existence in a little round house perched on a cliff in Ireland overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Drummer Jonny Quinn knew that this little house, where Kate Bush used to go to write songs, was the best place to channel the inner spirit of Snow Patrol.  By reading meaning into everything and isolating themselves in an amazing location from which to draw inspiration, Snow Patrol created a collection of powerful songs that boast some of the most poignant lyrics in rock today.

The album takes you on a journey ranging from the ominous and dark with tracks like “Headlights on Dark Roads” to “Chasing Cars,” an amazingly pure love song that touches your heart. Gary Lightbody, the band’s remarkably talented singer, said it best, “There are swaggering bands, bands who are in your face.  And then there are bands who get hold of you somewhere else.  I think it’s a heart thing, an intimacy thing. Like you know them and they know you.  I think we are one of those bands.”  Yes, Snow Patrol, you most certainly are.

 Pick up a copy of Eyes Open today at www.amazon.com.

  Chick Picks: For Dad  
  Out of everyone we know, buying a gift for Dad is the hardest, or is that just our dad?  We like to think of ourselves as creative in the gift-giving department but we seem to lose it entirely when it comes to our father.  It’s usually a book, or golf balls, or a shirt....yawn.  And though the following aren’t uber-thoughtful, at least they are a little different and something we know he’ll appreciate...especially because they are from you.

The Gift that Pleases Every Man

Nothing says love like a card, especially a gift card.  And, no worries, it is thoughtful because you are thinking of him and his freedom of choice, his freedom from tacky ties, from wasted cash, and polite phony thank yous.  And nothing says “I love you” like a gift card from Bridgeport Village.  Talk about Freedom of Choice.  Just pick up your Bridgeport Village gift card from the concierge center (loaded with any amount) and he can pick out his own gift — whether it’s a movie, dinner, date night, Tommy Bahamas, the Discovery Store, Oregon Scientific, J. Crew, the list goes on and on.  This is easy...you’re done...piece o’ cake!



Bird Problems, Solved

There is a bird conspiracy.  The birds are out to get us.  They poopied all over our car, and we mean ALL over it.  Then they keep flying at our bedroom window, fluttering at us, like they’re trying to tell us something.  We’re thinking it’s got to be some long-lost relatives reincarnated.  It’s freaking us out.  And then there are the geese that flock to our backyard and “go” en masse all over the lawn...and they’re migratory (which leads to totally justified bird flu fears).  

So as a Father’s Day present for the father of our children (we know we use “we” but no, he isn’t a polygamist) and really for us, we’re going to get a modern bird feeder and put it down below and a little too near our neighbor’s house.  



For the Warped at Heart

Maybe the father of your chickadees is more the sophomoric type and likes a good frat-boy laugh.   Head over to Urban Outfitters for Naughty Potty Word Finds (bathroom scavenger hunt, searching for words like...oh, we can’t even say here…and absurd mazes, and other totally disgusting stuff only heeee could appreciate) or maybe the “Would You Rather” game that he can play with his buddies.  Have him ponder this: “The Deity is going to give you an outfit to spice things up in the bedroom... Would you rather 1. Wear bologna lingerie OR 2. Aviator glasses, crotchless acid wash jeans, and a giant foam-rubber “You’re number one” hand?" You get the picture.  Or maybe he’d prefer this handy guide to world domination, “How to Rule the World.”  

Forget Borders and head to Urban Outfitters.  They have a library of books only he could love.



A Vital Gift

The Vital Barbershop is perfect for Dad.  They have decadent yet “manly” services and cool shaving products.  You can get the cool shave, the cut, and the hot towel wrap from the good ole’ days.  They’ll even give him an old-fashioned soda or a brewski while he chills.

Their most popular package for gift giving is their "Cut and Rejuvenator Shave" for $60...beats a tie any day!  Also, for Father's Day weekend, The Vital Barbershop is offering 20% off Art of Shaving and Anthony Logistics products.



Like Father Like Child

Portland’s Blackwagon.com is offering the coolest tees for dad and child from No Star. They will be so adorable in their matching Sumo Wrestler shirts, and boy they’ll get lots of adoring attention.  

Or better yet, get matching No Star tees for the whole family and stand out in the crowd on your summer vacation.



A Declaration of Independents

Is your pops a film buff?  Portland’s FilmBaby.com carries all independent films.  What could be better than endless indies delivered to his door?  It’s also a hub for your wannabe filmmaker to showcase and sell his own film.  

This is so great...only in Portland!



He’ll Flip for These

He’ll flip for Havaianas Brasil Cup Flip Flops.  They are all the rage, only $18, and something he can hang in all summer long or lounge in on Sunday morning.  Havaianas are popping up in magazines on all the celebs’ pedicured feet.  

They are sold at Urbane Zen in all kinds of vibrant patterns.  Collect them all.



Custom Tailoring Comes to Town

(For two days only!) What could be a more fitting gift for Dad than a custom-tailored shirt? There’s something about a man in clothing  that fits just so. The sleeves are the right length, the collar is just as he likes it – spread, button-down, whatever strikes his fancy – and the stitching makes it look like he bought it on Savile Row. Make your appointment now for a visit with a Master Tailor – he will be in town only two days, and is bringing hundreds of fabric samples to Portland on June 18 and 19 for both shirts and suits. Plus, though these are custom items, they’re affordable, starting at just $59. And the best part? Dad’s measurements will be kept on file so he can order shirts and suits online whenever he pleases.

For an appointment, email Joe at joe@mytailor.com or call 1.800.466.7133. On Sunday, June 18, Joe will be in Tigard; on Monday, June 19, he will take appointments in downtown Portland.


Hip Happenings:


dragonlily boutique presents...."Girl's Night Out

  • What: Private Shopping Soiree & Wine Tasting 101
  • When: Saturday, June 24, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Where: dragonlily boutique, 1740 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland
  • RSVP: call 503-234-lily or e-mail info@dragonlily.org
    $10 per person (space is limited

Dragonlily Boutique and the Wine Tasting Club of California have joined together for a special evening of private shopping and a fun, informative wine-tasting led by wine consultant Ariel Zimmer. Sample six California small-batch wines and learn the wine basics, from appelations to tannins. Wear your comfortable clothes, bring your girlfriends and come prepared for fun!
Shop, sip, nibble and enjoy the comfort and highly personalized service of this truly unique private shopping experience. End the night with an exquisite chocolate port, a surprise dessert, and perhaps a new summer dress to spice up your wardrobe!
All purchases are 10% off that night!

To host a private shopping soiree for you and your girlfriends any evening of the week, contact Jasmine or Keri at 503-234-lily or e-mail info@dragonlily.org .

To host a private wine-tasting of your own contact Ariel Zimmer at ariel@thewinetastingclub.com




Have Fun at AAA Safety Day!

Keeping your family safe is always a priority, and AAA Safety Day makes it fun for everyone! The big event is Friday, June 23, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. in the new Crossroads at Orenco shopping center, located at 7162 NE Cornell Road (at NW Cornelius Pass).
Safety Day events include:

  • Child Safety Seat Inspections (11 a.m.–1 p.m.)
  • Free Child Photo ID Kit*—Courtesy of the Ross Island Earlyrisers Kiwanis Club (11 a.m.-2 p.m.)
  • Clowns, face-painting, balloon animals and caricature artist (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)
  • Free Hot Dogs and Ice Cream* (noon-2 p.m.)
  • Meet Howler from 99.5 The Wolf (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
  • Battery Check (11 a.m.-4 p.m.)
  • Fire Truck Show by the Hillsboro Fire Department (2-4 p.m.)
  • Mobile Command Station and K-9 Team Meet & Greet from the Hillsboro Police Department (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
  • Hillsboro Chamber Ribbon Cutting with Mayor Tom Hughes (3 p.m.)

Plus great giveaways:

  • Free kids’ goodie bag*
  • North American Road Atlas for the first 100 people to show us their AAA Membership cards
  • Complimentary atlas with a no-obligation insurance quote
*While supplies last

Call 503.726.5900 for more information.



The Art Institute of Portland’s 8th Annual Student Benefit Fashion Show
Rhythm and Form: A fashion and dance event

  • What: A fashion show to benefit the student Creative Arts Scholarship fund. Featuring college  students' fashion designs.  Dance performance by the Jefferson Dancers.
  • Who: Organized by the students and faculty of The Art Institute of Portland.
  • When: Sunday, June 18.  Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show begins 7 p.m. One-hour runway show.
  • Where: The Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W. Burnside St, Portland, 97209
  • Cost: $20 in advance; $25 at the door. General admission (no reserved).
  • Call: Tickets are available through TicketMaster: 503.274.1550 or www.ticketmaster.com  or the Crystal Ballroom Box office: 503.225.0047


Celebrate Olea’s First Anniversary

  • What: Olea’s first anniversary party to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities
    of Oregon and Southwest Washington, with carnival games, raffle prizes,
    and festive food and drink
  • When: Olea will roll out the big top on Wednesday, June 28, from 5:30-10 p.m.
  • Tickets: $20 per person. Admission includes beverages and tastes from Olea’s small plates menu, from grilled dates and pommes frites to crispy frico and ceci – and whimsical carnival food like 5-Rum Daiquiri snow cones, lobster corn dogs and passion fruit and bubble gum flavored cotton candy created by executive chef Scott Shampine.
  • Call: Olea, at 503.274.0800.


Trunk Show at Simpatica!

Join the girls for a trunk show at Simpatica June 22 from 6-9 p.m. The event will feature local business owners such as Garnish Apparel, Jasmine Photography, Magma Jewelry
and more.

It's sure to be a fun evening with Simpatica providing a complimentary antipasta spread and house wine. They've been recently voted as one of the up-and-coming caterers by Bon Appetit magazine.

So phone the babysitter, grab your girlfriends and come enjoy the creativity that makes Portland so vibrant!

828 SE Ash St.
Portland, OR 97214


Throw a Party for the Party Store!!!

The Lippman Company, Portland’s favorite locally owned party store has just been nationally recognized  as the “2006 Party Retailer of the Year.”  In celebration of winning their award, they are giving one lucky Portlander the chance to throw an amazing party with a $150 gift certificate to spend on Lippman Co. merchandise or rentals anytime in the next year.

Stop by the store anytime between now and July 1 to enter the raffle and shop for everything you need for summer entertaining while you’re there.  They have loads of fun Fourth of July stuff and have also filled an entire room with summer and tropical items.  Stock up on a wide array of beach balls, hula hoops, water balloons, pink flamingos, nautical decorations, tiki torches, leis, palm trees, island scene-setters, coconut cups, and, of course, hundreds and hundreds of little drink umbrellas for your backyard cocktail parties!

  • Where: 50 SE Yamhill (on the corner of Water Avenue, just 6 blocks North of OMSI at the base of the Morrison Bridge)
  • Hours: M-F 9-6 & Saturday 9-5
  • Phone: 503.239.7007
  • Website: www.lippmancompany.com


Celebrate A Good Night's Sleep!

Win a gift certificate to Sleep Country USA and celebrate their grand opening!

  • What: Sleep Country USA will celebrate the grand opening of its new downtown Portland store with a special rendition of its recently introduced Princess and the Pea contest.
  • When: Thursday, June 22, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
  • Where: Spaulding Building. 319 SW Washington , Downtown

Come into the new store and guess which mattress on the showroom floor is hiding a "Pea.”  If you guess correctly you will be entered into a drawing to win a $1,000 Sleep Country USA gift certificate and be named the Prince or Princess of the Land! The event will be big! There's also an on-site radio promotion by KFIS, who will be giving away T-shirts, CDs and books, so come down and have fun! Good night!


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