Lots to See in the Neighborhood

Dear Liza,

Spring weather is here! The flowers are popping, birds are singing, and the days alternate between sun and showers.

On a walk through the neighborhood to Collage Art Supplies, we saw our first tulips, hanging out with their friends hyacinths and daffodils

Down in SE Division Street, the employees of our favorite vintage shop, Artifact, are protesting unfair promotion practices and pay. We waved in support of the protesters and will shop elsewhere until the management figures out how to treat its staff better.

Grandpa Nelson was very patient while I picked out my birthday presents, two jars of Mod Podge, two pencil sharpeners and some Liquitex acrylics, which will fill in some gaps in my art cupboard. Then we walked to The Daily Dose coffee shop for a pick-me-up. Nicole Little’s art on their walls was intricate and colorful, showing real skill with a bandsaw and showing the peace sign from my childhood.

Heading back home, we ran into a free roaming duck and chicken, wandering up 32nd Street.

And just to put the SPRING stamp on the day, we saw our first tulip tree blooming! This variety of Magnolia, which popular here in Portland, is not as bulky as those I knew in Salinas. I like them so much better!

Have a great day!


Grandma Judy

A New Hat

Dear Liza,

For years, I had a favorite hat. It was an Indiana Jones style that was good for winter, spring and fall, waterproof for rain, and heavy felt so it was warm.

When I was teaching, I wore it every day. Parents and kids told me they could identify me anywhere in town because of the distinctive silhouette of the hat.

Then, in 2019, I lost it. On vacation in Seattle, I left it in a taxi cab. Gone, gone, gone. Now what?

For months, I was too sad about it to think about replacing it. That winter came and went and I wore wooly hats and my new Hufflepuff scarf.

For the next summer I got a wonderful straw hat. But still no replacement.

And then the other at Artifact, a fabulous second hand shop down on Division, I found it! Second hand and on sale, I fell in love with it. It fit, it was close enough to my old one but just different enough to be ‘new’, and the price was right.

I love my new hat!



Grandma Judy

Moore Coffee, Please!

Dear Liza,

Mostly, when we need groceries, we make small trips and walk the goodies home, but when we are out of soda, ice cream and cat litter all at once, it’s time to bring the big guns.

And since we had the car out, we decided to so some wandering. We drove to Collage Art Supplies on Division and picked up some card stock and watercolors on sale.Then we headed to Artifact, a curated second hand store with really neat stuff. I got a new hat! (That is a story for tomorrow).

Then, worn out and needing sustenance before grocery shopping, we hunted for a new place Auntie Bridgett had heard about, Moore Coffee…. “It’s in a little alley,” she said. And she was right. And such a pleasant alley!

The actual coffee is served out of a tricked out Volkswagen van, and the van is parked in a delightfully comfy and bohemian space between and behind two buildings. There are cozy chairs and yummy food and drink. There is shade from the sun and protection from the rain.

And, the young man told us, on weekdays after lunch, there is beer and wine and sandwiches! (Which means we need to make a return visit).

Pain Au chocolat? Oui, s’il vous plait!

And there was a vintage MAD magazine!

Enjoying the yummy pastry and cooling iced Earl Grey tea while enjoying spoofs on the elections of 1976 was relaxing, delicious and very Portland.

When we finally pulled ourselves out of the old Adirondack chairs and headed for Safeway, we were well prepared. What a lovely day!


Grandma Judy