The recent cold and snowy weather has chased us back inside and that has me thinking about projects inside the house.  One of our doors has some latch problems and that got me to thinking about doorknobs, so this week we went to Parr to learn how to replace a doorknob with Amber.  We are also starting to see more flowers in the garden and that means more cut flowers for the table and to celebrate that, we did a story on bringing the outdoors inside.   We were so tired that we had a glass of wine and admired the taste while we had our featured pasta dish.  Wow, that is our whole show… who said you can’t have fun on a rainy/snowy day.  Now it’s time to share what we learned!

Bringing the Outside In

We make a trip up the hill near St Vincent’s hospital on Barnes Road to Cornell Farm (503-292-9895) to check out their new event space in the old farm house on the property.  We had heard that a designer had used plants and cut flowers to create an incredible outside-in look in the house.  Robin met with Thomas Paine from Thomas Paine Atelier (503-274-9095) to see what he had put together.  The first stop was the old dining room.  It was filled with fresh cut flowers and wonderful plants!  Thomas had brought in vases of different sizes and filled them with flowers, some from the plants around the grounds and nursery, and some from the local florist shop.  Some of the vases were filled with single types of flowers.  A couple of vases had single varieties of orchids of the same color and those were setting next to other vases filled with lilies and tropical plants.  The coolest thing was a bunch of orchid blooms submerged in water.  Thomas also told us that he sometimes adds sparkling water to these submerged flowers to make tiny bubbles appear on the petals. 

The next room we visited had plants on a bigger scale.  Thomas had brought in huge planters with palms and other tropicals.  They filled the corners of the room with color and texture.  He had also added a very large planter on a table that contained dozens of plants.  He also matched the paintings (part of a nature series) and his own hand-made furniture with the room color to make a warm and inviting place.  He even made planter out of an old racing trophy to add some character to the room.  The large room was well suited to the large plants.  Thomas also added touches of smaller plants to bring in splashes of color. 

If you would like to do something similar in your home the experts at Cornell can get you started.  If you are interested in renting out this lovely space, give them a call at the nursery as well.

Tasting Your Wine

Finding the right wine may be at the tip of your tongue.  Denise Brown joined David to explain how to taste wine and what you should be looking for in a good wine.  Denise is a wine ambassador for Willamette Valley Vineyards and she also has her own business called Pour, Pair, Toast & Taste (503-914-7515) where she does private dinners and wine pairings.  Today she walked David through some of her tips.  She started by telling us about the ‘5’s’ of wine making; juice, yeast, barrel, age and a great winemaker.  These in combination are what can make a really great wine (or in the wrong hands a terrible wine).  Fortunately the Willamette Valley pinots that she brought are very fine wines!!!  Next she told us about the tongue.  There are 5 tastes to the human tongue, sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and the new flavor, savory.  Depending on where the wine lands on your tongue can change the taste that you experience or even what flavors you taste first.  Denise then walked David through some different Willamette Valley Vineyards’ Pinot Noirs.  Each of these wines, even though they are from the same grape, had totally different tastes.  Flavors ran from peppery and chocolaty to having faint hints of pine and berries.  You can see by the different styles of Pinots why it can change what you taste when you pair them with certain dishes like salmon or red meat.  If you would like to learn more about wines you can take a tour at Willamette Valley Vineyards (800-344-9463) or even better, contact Denise about scheduling a dinner and some wine pairings at your home with some friends!

Better Living Chef

If you are interested in sustainability and making a better world for us and future generations you need to pay a visit to the Better Living Show taking place this weekend at the Expo Center.  This 5th year event has something for anyone looking to lessen their impact on the environment.  The event is free and open to the public.  It has booths, products and demonstrations to help you get healthy and be more eco-friendly.  One of the highlights of the show is the cooking demonstrations.  NW Natural and the NW Natural Appliance Center (503-220-2362) are hosts of the NW Natural Blue Home, a 1,100 square foot demo home that has all the latest in green gadgets!  In the Blue Home is one of the cooking demo areas and Adrenaline Hunter host, Bethy Rossos, will be there showing people how to make a rustic pizza on the BBQ.  She met up with us to share another recipe of hers.  She made a BLT-Nastroni, a name she got from one of her students (she is also a teacher).  The recipe is not a bacon, lettuce and tomato.  It is a Bacon, leek and tomato recipe.  She started by sautéing some bacon ends in some olive oil until they were crisp.  Then she added a half cup of leeks, a quarter cup of chopped sun dried tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of chopped garlic.  When it was nearly done and the vegetables were soft she added a cup of white wine and deglazed the mixture.  When the wine was reduced she added in some mascarpone and a half cup of cream.  While she was doing this David was put to work rolling and cutting some pasta noodles.  When the noodles were done, the mixture went over the top and she added a little chopped nuts to give it a little crunch and some grated parmesan cheese.  It was spectacular!  If you would like to see Bethy in action on her TV show be sure to tune in to Adrenaline Hunter on Comcast Sportsnet.  Don’t forget to stop by and see her cooking seminars happening both Saturday and Sunday at the Better Living Show this weekend at 1pm. You can also check out her recipes at http://cookingrusticwithbethyrossos.com.

Changing a Doorknob

One of the easiest projects around the house is replacing a doorknob.  Sometime you want to change the style or look of your home, or you may be looking for a little more security, and changing the doorknob may the easiest way to do both.  Amber from Parr Lumber (866-214-7277) walked us through the project to show us how to do it right.  First you need to get all the tools you will need together so you are not hunting for them during the project.  She had a hammer, a chisel, and screwdriver with different heads.  If you don’t have a hole in your door you will need to get a jig that will make a hole for the new doorknob.  Finally you need your new doorknob, keyed for outside doors and non-keyed for inside doors.  Either way the steps are the same.  First remove the old doorknob by unscrewing the 2 long screws near the handle.  Remove the 2 handle pieces and the drive piece.  This will leave you with a hole to start with.  Next place the new drive piece in the small hole in the door.  Make sure that the drive piece is pointed the right way so it will catch and hold the door shut when closed.  If it seems a little loose look for the shim pieces to put around the drive mechanism to tighten it up. Then thread the new handle pieces into the holes of the drive piece and screw them together.  This should be pretty easy to do.  Finally attach the new plate on the end of the drive mechanism, on the edge of the door, to secure the drive.  Check to make sure it lines up with the strike plate on the door frame.  If it doesn’t you may have to use the chisel to make it bigger, and then you are done!  If you get in over your head you can check with any Parr location for one of the helpful staff to give you some tips for success.


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This page last modified
April 13, 2012.