We ran into a viewer the other day at one of our Favorite stores, Terra Casa (503-577-8242). She had seen some of the great décor items on the show and had to stop by the store and see for herself, all the great things they have in stock. While she was shopping we chatted about the show. She was very nice in her comments and she loved the fact that it was a local show, featuring local places. That is what we try to do every week. We try to give you ideas for recipes, projects and designs to make your home better, plus places you can go to get help. If you ever have ideas or comments, please drop us a line and let us know what you are thinking. We really would like to hear from you.

Reasons for Choosing a Designer

When a lot of people are looking at re-doing a space in their home or considering a home improvement they may think an interior designer is a luxury. Actually, hiring a designer may save you money (and your sanity) in the long run. Designer Kimberlee Jaynes talked to David about the main reasons for hiring a designer. First of all, they offer solutions. Most designers have a wide range of experience and they have worked through a lot of the common problems that people face when they are looking at a project. Providing solutions to these problems are easy for them. They also know what to look for. They make sure things are done right the first time. You can't always return the couch when you get it. You have to also look at the space and figure out if things will fit. Designers also have the contacts and means for getting into design centers where the newest products are displayed. They also have working relationships with suppliers and can sometimes get discounts that you can't find elsewhere. They also can help with opposing tastes, especially between husbands and wives. That is worth the price in itself! Hiring a designer is just protecting your investment. If you have any questions feel free to contact Kimberlee at Kimberlee Jaynes Interior Designs (503-407-9525).

Painted Hills Beef

When you are in your grocery store, do you know where you food comes from? If you buy Painted Hills Natural Beef (1-877-306-8247) you know exactly where it comes from. We met up with Merhten Homer, President of Painted Hills to learn what makes this beef so different. Merhten told us it is the way it is grown. These cattle are grown with no added hormones, no antibiotics and a 100% vegetarian diet. The meat is 'choice grade' the best that you can buy. Merhten also gave us some grilling tips too. He recommended that you don't over-cook the beef. If you are grilling, you are looking for a medium rare piece of meat. To get this, all you have to do is get your grill to a medium heat. Cook your steak until it gets shiny on one side. This means that the moisture and natural oils in the meat have cooked to the surface. Flip it over and repeat on the other side, and you are done. We found a great selection of Painted Hills Beef at Barber World Foods, (503-244-0670) a great market near Capitol Highway, but it is also available at select markets around the state.

Buffalo Shepherd Pie

What's for Dinner!?! That s probably one of the most heard phrases in the home when it gets close to dinner time. To help answer that question we checked in with Mr. Mom, Dave Lilja. Dave is a stay-at-home dad who had to deal with that question all the time and so he came up with a bunch of easy, nutritious recipes that he recently published in a great cookbook, 'Mr. Mom's Favorite Family Meals'. His recipes are really interesting... in fact the one he did for us is a Buffalo Shepherd Pie. The reasons for the buffalo instead of beef, it is lean, it is cheaper, and the flavor is outstanding. Dave started by browning the buffalo, then he steamed some cauliflower which was mashed to look and feel like mashed potatoes. Once the buffalo is browned, it is added to a casserole dish and mixed with chopped carrots. The mashed cauliflower was spread over the top and grated cheese was sprinkled over that. It was baked at 350 degrees for 25 minutes and it was done. If you would like to try this recipe, you can click here or you can get a copy of Mr. Mom's cookbook at his website or call 303-800-1603.

Culinary Salt Tasting

If you are just using plain salt on your meals you are really missing out on some true flavor excitement! We stopped by the Spice and Tea Exchange of Portland (503-208-2886) to see some of the different types of salt that are on the market. Rob and Ivy Liniger are the owners and Rob gave Robin a 'taste tour' of the different salts they carry. First we saw the mineral salt, which is mined out of the ground. It is a solid salt slab that can be used as a cooking surface or even a serving tray. Next we saw the solar salts. These salts are formed by evaporation. Rob told us that all salts have their own flavors and nuances. Robin then tried a bunch of different salts. The first was a Fleur de Sel, which means the Flower of the Salt. It is the very top layer taken from the evaporated salt. Next was the Himalayan Mineral Salt, this is a pink salt that is the favorite of Robin's daughter. With 70 different minerals it has an earthy, smoky flavor. Next was the Cypress White, which is a finishing salt. You add this salt at the table. The delicate structure of this salt will make it break down when you cook, so you want to avoid using it for cooking. Next was an olive salt that was made in Oregon. It is great in soups and salad because of the intense flavor. Finally we tried the Chardonnay Smoked Salt. It is a salt that is aged in oak chardonnay barrels. If you think this is incredible, they have about 30 more varieties of salt. If you are looking to 'spice' up your cooking, stop by their store in downtown and say hi.

Deck Refinishing - Part 1

Before you can head out and enjoy the rest of the summer you really need to redo that deck! You have been putting it off long enough. To help you (and others who are afraid to ask for help), we went out to Miller Paint (971-204-0007) to learn the steps for getting the job done right. George met us at their deck at the Miller company headquarters to walk us through the steps.

The first step was to clean the deck. You never want to put new stain over old stain so you have to clean it first. George started by using Cabot 'Problem-Solver' and Cabot 'Wood Brightener'. You first brush it on and then pressure wash it off. If you don't have a pressure washer, you can use a strong bristle brush. You will want to be carful with the power washer. Too high of pressure and you could damage the wood. Also you don't want the stripper to dry on the wood so apply it during the cooler parts of the day when temperatures are between 50 and 70 degrees. Once the deck is cleaned you will need to wait for 2-3 days before you can apply the new stain... and to show you how to do that you will need to tune in next week.



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This page last modified
August 13, 2010.