You know what is really scary? And I don’t mean David! It is the fact that we may not be ready for winter! We have gone through and checked our list, but you can never be too careful. In fact things can surprise you! This past week we have had to check with fence companies to see if they can come out and fix our fence. The winds of a week ago blew a portion of the fence over. Just one more thing we forgot to check. To see if you have some of the basics checked, watch our story on our ‘Fall Checklist’ in this week’s show.

Also we started the show with a few quick tips for those ‘trick or treaters’. First, pick up all your hoses and other obstructions on your walkways so they don’t trip over anything when they come to your home. Then move all those pumpkins with candles in them away from the walkways so they can’t be knocked over and set fire to anything. Next check the costumes that your kids will be wearing. Make sure they are fireproof and that the masks have large enough eyeholes so they can see where they are going. Also, give them a flashlight since a lot of them will be out after dark! And most of all enjoy an evening full of scary fun!

Al’s Christmas Tree Trends

It is hard to believe but Christmas is right around the bend. It is time to start thinking about the holiday season and one of the major symbols of the season is the Christmas tree. We stopped at Al’s Garden Center (503-726-1162) where they are gear up for the season with the latest in Christmas tree decorations. Juanita joined David to fill him in on what we should be looking for this season. One of the best selling trees every year is the crystal tree. This tree is covered by white and crystal clear ornaments. They customize it every year with a different accent color, this year it was with purple ribbons. That is what makes the tree popular; you can change the look by just adding a different color. Next we moved to a ‘comfort’ tree. This one had a homemade Northwest feel to it. It was covered with earth-toned ornaments and some even looked handmade. That brought up a good point. If you are looking at freshening up an old tree you can start by moving into the Northwest look. The old ornaments from the kid’s grade school can be accented by new ornaments and when they get older you can pass on those old ornaments to them and slowly add more Northwest (or even crystal) ones to the mix. Of course you can also add a new tree so you can decorate one old and one new. Finally we moved to a specialty tree. This one was for pets and the pet lover. It was covered with cat and dog ornaments, even ones that you could personalize for your pet. Pet lovers are not the only ones who like a personalized tree, don’t leave out the sports fans! Another trend is for the sports fanatic to have their own tree. Al’s has a huge collection of Duck and Beaver ornaments for the local fan. You can find all these decorative trees and ornaments at the Sherwood and Woodburn stores. You can see them up close and personal during the annual Evening of Lights. It takes place in Sherwood on November 1st from 4-9pm and November 2nd from 4-9pm at the Woodburn store. Stop by and check out the trees, sample holiday foods, listen to live music and enter to win prizes.

Lonesomeville Scarecrows

Getting your yard ready for Halloween can really tax the creative mind. If you are looking for something creative, you may be stuck with something plastic and mass produced. To get a different twist on decorations we stopped by Lonesomeville Pottery (503-774-5387). Every year the guys at Lonesomeville go over the top in their decorating. They have learned that the best decorations are not from the store, they can be from your backyard. Wayne joined Robin in the backyard to show her how they make scarecrows (effigies, according to Wayne) out of spare twigs and branches. They simply look for branches that can be used for any body part (think hands, feet, torso or legs) then they bind the various branches together with twine or florists wire and screw on a clay Jack O’lantern head that they make at Lonesomeville. They use battery lights on the inside of the head because the body is made out of dried wood. They also make a pretty good fake spider as well.

You can take a look at these scary creations today, October 27th, at their semi-annual sale from 5 to 9 pm. All of their pottery is on sale and you can pick up your own pottery Jack O’lantern, ‘scream’ mask, or even a little luminary. You can also check them out on-line anytime of year for some wonderful pottery.

Wine and Tapas

What a great match, Wine and Tapas. In fact that is the name of an event coming up on the 29th, Spain’s Great Match. This event is all about wine, food and design. Every year they pick a couple of locations around the country to do the event. This year it was New York and Portland! For the local food and wine lovers, you can experience Spain at its best; you can learn about Spanish wines, get a look at contemporary designs from a Spanish furniture designer and taste tapas from 8 different Spanish restaurants.

To see what was on tap we stopped by Andina Restaurant (503-228-9535) and met with some of their great staff. First Chef Hank Costello made a signature Spanish tapa with Spanish and Peruvian ingredients. He started with Spanish and Peruvian peppers, a Peruvian black mint, garlic and octopus. He started by creating a pickling mixture. He added about 2 cups of distilled white vinegar and a cup and a half of water, plus about a quarter cup of salt to a bowl. This was mixed until the salt was dissolved in the mixture. Then he added about a cup and a half of whole garlic cloves and the black mint to the mixture and then started to cut up peppers. While he was doing that we had a chance to chat with Doris, one of the owners of Andina who is from Peru. She talked about how the Spanish influences on Peruvian cuisine have been a blessing for both. The Peruvian ingredients really bring some different flavors to the dishes. We joined Hank again after he had cut up the peppers and had added them to the mix. This was set aside to pickle for 2 or 3 days. Then we prepared the boiled octopus. To clean the octopus you cut along the side and the outside skin comes right off. Once that was cleaned he placed the pieces on a skewer alternating with the pickled peppers. It was covered with some olive aioli and tasted incredible!

We then met with the wine director at Andina, Ken Collura to talk about pairing these great tapas with a wine. Ken told us that the Spanish don’t consider themselves as one nation, but as a bunch of different nations under one flag. That means all their regional foods and wines can be strikingly different. The one constant is the quality and value. He talked about the different wines and how, by knowing which region it came from, you can match the fruitiness or acidity of the wine to the food. Ken will be at the ‘Great Match’ event and you can learn first hand how to do the pairings yourself. The event will be at the Leftbank Annex at 101 N. Weidler on the 29th, with walk around tastings from 6pm to 9pm. Check out the website for more information about tickets.

Mama Mia Cocktail

Mama Mia’s (503-295-6464) is a well known Portland restaurant known for great food, but they also have some great cocktails. To get a sample of one of their tasty cocktails we met up with Jared in the bar. He pulled out the recipe for a ‘huckleberry amaretto sour’. He started by pulling out his favorite liquors for this recipe. That included the 44 North Huckleberry vodka, Disaronno Amaretto and Bol’s Blue Caracao. You will use an ounce and a quarter of the huckleberry vodka and the amaretto to start. Pour those 2 in a glass over ice, and then add some sour mix, about a ½ cup. Shake it and strain into a chilled glass, add a dash of blue caracao to give it a little color, garnish with a twist of lemon and you are ready to serve. If you are not a cocktail drinker they can also make you a mean cappuccino. Jared even decorated David’s with a spider web just for Halloween!

Stop by Mama Mia’s for their great happy hour menu. It includes drinks, appetizers, dinner entrees and even desserts. Nothing is over $5! A great way to get a meal without spending a lot of money!

Fall Home Checklist

The change in the seasons is a good time to check to see if your home is ready for the cold wet weather yet to come. David and Robin received some tips from our friend Linda Gemal about things you should check on your home to get it ready for the season. We started at the top of the list and the home. The roof is where Robin started. Get at eye level with your roof. Look for loose shingles or flashing (the metal areas around vents and chimneys). Check for cracks in your chimney and repair the mortar if needed. Call a chimney sweep and get the inside of the chimney checked out as well. Clean out your gutters and make sure they are not loose or have cracks that would cause any leakage.

On the ground David was checking out the doors and windows with weather stripping and caulking. Make sure that they don’t have cracks or gaps. Re-strip or re-caulk if needed. Then check out your siding. If it is cracked repair or replace it (next week on Fusion we will show you how to do this). Finally remove and drain your hoses and cover the hose bibs to prevent frost damage. For a complete list of tips check out this list. To receive Linda’s newsletter you can sign up at her website, www.rejuvenateyourhome.com.


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This page last modified
November 02, 2012.