BREAKFAST x Columbian Cafe / Astoria, OR

We live in the sleepy coastal town of Astoria. There are many charming places to invest your time; cafes, book stores, art galleries.. the place we chose this particular morning is called the Columbian Cafe. I'm not sure how long its been open, but I now there is character in its walls and story on the shelves. Sophie and I went there breakfast. I had met Kyle (chef) the night before at a show in the Voodoo Room and decided we would pay him a visit in the morning. We made it in around 10:40am. Cozied up to the counter - we were greeted by Kyle and Tania. Water, coffee, housemade bread and jam - it isn't hard to remember why we love the Columbian. Sophie ordered the vegetarian Mercy (chef's choice) and I ordered the meat inspired Mercy option. Mercy is a beautiful thing. It allows the chef to create in a way that keeps them inspired. No guidelines beyond your general meal desire; be it meat, vegetables, fish, etc. I admire this as a menu item. We talked to Kyle about what inspires him in the kitchen and otherwise. He is from a small farming community about an hour outside of town. Now he lives here - pursuing craft and passion behind the bar in this little restaurant, in the sleepy town of Astoria. People like Kyle are why folks love it here. I am inspired to see Kyle cook and to be served a meal by his hands. To be honest I have no idea what to call the meal I was served. It was beautiful, delicious, creative, colorful, warm, spicy.. as far as ingredients I know there were eggs [scrambled and presented in a crepe-like flat], hash browns, mushroom, chorizo, cabbage, cilantro, various spices and topped with avocado. Sophie had pan seared potatoe slices, stir fried vegetables, and poached eggs, topped with green beans and beet pesto. We left the restaurant full; full of excitement, inspiration, delicious food, and a desire to create meaningful things with our hands in the same way we had been treated to during our visit to the Columbian Cafe. 

Cold Feet - Warm Hearts / Snow in Florence, AL

I thought I had managed to escape the snow that has been falling in record amounts all over New England... apparently it followed me south. The forecast said snow and ice would start at 1pm. 1pm came and went. I figured it was another false alarm. 2pm.. snowfall. It snowed till 8pm. Florence, AL had about 5" of solid fluffy and beautiful snow. We spent the afternoon throwing snowballs and building a 6ft tall snowman. Felt nice to get out and embrace the cold with family.