The first big holiday of the summer is here and it looks like the weather is going to cooperate!  The Fourth of July is a great time to get away and that is what we are doing this weekend.  We hope you enjoy this week’s show.  They are some of our favorite stories and we hope you can still learn a thing or two from them!

Choosing Art

If you are decorating your home or apartment you may be having some trouble picking the right art for the walls.  We were joined at the 937 Condominiums in the Pearl District by Amy Troute of Amy Troute Interior Design (503-805-0811) to see how she chose the art for the condos there and get her tips for picking the right art for any room.  Amy showed us how she designed around the painting ‘Cowgirl’ by Sidonie Caron.  Amy had to take into account the wide windows along one wall and the starkness of the walls on the other side.  It was a very complimentary piece to the overall retro design.  If you have a piece of art that doesn’t fit in as well as the piece by Sidonie you may want to incorporate some of the same colors as the art into your other designs around the room.  This will help tie it all together.  If you are looking for art, find something that you love.  Don’t just buy a piece based on its value (or what others would call an investment).  You will be living with this art for a long time and you should enjoy it every time you walk into a room.   A quality designer or gallery will work with you and your space to find a piece that will fit your tastes and your décor.  And remember, the things in your room, the carpet, the furniture, the paint, are much more flexible and easily changed than some of the larger art you may find.  If you are loking for some of the art that we featured in the story you will find these artists at Heidi McBride Gallery & Art Consultancy.  The artists are Sidonie Caron, Nick Van Grainger, Gabe Fernandez, Therese Murdza, Ani Licia Thompkins, Michael Hensley, Molly Cliff Hilts and Eugenia Pardue. 

Apple Pear Salad

We love visiting great restaurants.  Our latest favorite is Oswego Grill (503-352-4750) in Lake Oswego at the junction of I-5 and 217.  Owner Dave Burnett invited us into the kitchen to meet his chef, Genardo Zurita.  We also got to see their custom wood fired grill.  Dave worked over 20 years at another restaurant and decided to open his own place.  It is wonderful.  The grill itself is 1400 pounds of cooking magic.  They cook their steaks, burgers, seafood and even a salad over mesquite, apple and cherry wood.   Chef Zurita decided to show us an apple pear salad with grilled chicken.  Chef started with a couple of chicken breasts that were covered in olive oil, salt and pepper.  After about 3 minutes per side the chicken was ready.  Next we moved to the assembly area where we were going to put our salad together.  We used arugula as the base of our salad.  The ingredients included sliced apples and pears, and lemon vinaigrette.  To make the vinaigrette we used lemon juice, garlic, lemon zest, honey, salt and pepper.  We mixed olive oil into the mixture slowly to make sure it combines well.  We then tossed the ingredients together and garnished with grapes, candied walnuts, gorgonzola cheese and a couple of hardwood grilled asparagus spears.  To try making this recipe at home you can check out the recipe here.  We’re not sure anyone can reproduce this masterpiece, unless you want to build your own hardwood grill!  Stop by the Oswego Grill to taste it yourself.

Sanderson Fire Extinguishers

We all know that fire extinguishers are important for the safety of our families and property, but there are important differences in the types of fire extinguishers that are available to the homeowner so we stopped by Sanderson Safety Supply (503-238-5700) to talk with Geoff about the different types and how to use them.   First of all you may have noticed a letter designation on the front of your extinguisher, an A-B-C or a combination of those letters.  Those letters refer to the type of fire that the extinguisher can treat.  ‘A’ means a paper or wood combustible.  ‘B’ refers to liquids and ‘C’ deals with electrical fires.  So an ABC extinguisher can handle all of those different fires in your home. 

The most important areas for placing an extinguisher is a kitchen, a garage (near your furnace or hot water heater), and your sleeping areas.  The first areas are where you are most likely to encounter a fire and the last area is for your safety if a fire happens during the night.  Make sure the equipment is accessible for use too.  Don’t bury it in a closet. 

To use the extinguisher you would use the PASS technique.  That means ‘Pull, Aim, Squeeze and Sweep’.  Pull the pin, aim at the base of the fire, squeeze the handle and sweep at the base of the flames.  Remember to keep the fire extinguisher up-right while using it too.  When you use a fire extinguisher you are trying to remove the heat and the oxygen from the fire which are 2 of the 3 items from the fire triangle that maintain the fire (the 3rd is to remove the combustible material).  If you have a fire extinguisher make sure you maintain it and if you don’t then consider getting one (or two) for your home.    

Saving Water in the Bathroom

The one area in the home that uses the most water, and some would say energy as well, is the bathroom.  We met with Jim from the Regional Water Providers Consortium to learn some tips for reducing your water usage and save money in the process.  First we started at the sink.  You can save over half the amount of water in the sink by replacing the aerator with an energy efficient one.  It simply cuts the flow and adds more ‘air’ to the water.  Most people hardly notice the difference.  Another way to save water is to shut if off when you are not using it! 

We then moved to the toilet, the biggest water user in your house.  About one third of your water usage for your entire home is from the use of the toilet.  The biggest waste here is from toilet leaks.  Mainly the leaks occur within the toilet itself.  You can test for leaks in your toilet by using dye tablets.  Simply drop some dye tablets (food coloring will work as well) in the tank of your toilet and after about 30 minutes you can check the bowl for colored water.  If you see coloring, you have a leak.  If you do have a leak you will want to check the seal of the rubber flapper to make sure it doesn’t need replacing.  Another way to save water is to add a new type of ‘brick’ to the toilet.  Jim showed us a toilet bag that you can fill with water to displace space in the tank and that will save you water as well.  A ‘toilet tank diverter’ also helps.  This small device helps fill your tank up faster and allows less water to run into the bowl.  These are just a few of the water saving tips that you will find at the RWPC website.

Paint Goobers

Our quick tip this week is one that will help you get rid of the fuzzies on your paint roller to keep them off your wall when you paint.  Jamie joined us from Sherwin-Williams to show us how a little bit of painter’s tape can clean up your roller.  Just step on the tape, roll it out and run the roller over the sticky part of the tape.  This will collect the fuzzies and you are good to go to finish your paint job.


Summer Camp Packing

With summer right around the corner it may be getting close to camping time for your kids.  For some, that means a lot of excitement, for others it just stirs up a lot of stress.  How to get your kids ready for camping and keep your sanity can be hard to do.  Dan from The Container Store (503-620-5700) shared some tips that will make the whole process easier.  The key is to have a plan and include your kids in the process.  Make a check list of what you need to pack.  Check with the camp to see what they require and forbid.  If they don’t have a list you can find one at The Container Store.  The next thing, label!  Label everything.  From toiletries, to clothing you need to make sure things are labeled. Not only will it help in packing and identifying your stuff, it will also make sure that all that stuff makes it home too.  Use either a laundry marker or a P-Touch to make sure you get everything.  Make sure you include a laundry bag so they can have something for the dirty stuff or if the camp has a laundry service.  Get a caddie to carry their toiletries to and from the bathroom.  A pair of flip-flops are also a good idea in case they have to shower in a ‘rustic’ bathroom.  Include a notebook or diary so they can record their thoughts and memories, and include a folder with self addressed and stamped envelopes so they can drop you a note while they are away.  Finally, where to put all this stuff?  Dan recommends a trunk.  A suitcase may not have enough room and a duffle is too soft and may not protect everything you pack.  A trunk, either wood or waterproof plastic is the best solution.  Just make sure that it can be locked and that your child loves it.  If the thought of packing still has you stressed, you can get all the help you need at The Container Store.


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This page last modified
July 08, 2011.