Week 16 – The Painted Hills

#108 The Painted Hills

17 April 2016 // Painted Hills, Oregon

Once upon a time, this was a forest.

Now, it’s basically Mars.

Seven Wonders of Oregon status: three down, four to go.

#109 Training for 13.1

18 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

This week kicks off the last week of full training before the half marathon. Next week begins the cool-down process of tapering.

The half-marathon has never felt more do-able. The fact that I’ve made it this far and can make an eleven mile run pretty easily means that running a half feels within reach.

Training has been a much more enjoyable process than I imagined. Looking forward to seeing it culminate in a couple of weeks.

#110 Pre’s Trail

19 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure one of them is Pre’s Trail.”

–Quote from the shirt I’m wearing on race day

This is it! I finished my last week of full training with an 11 mile long run. Early morning at Pre’s Trail made this an especially pleasant run and best of all, I finished with a pace in the 9:40s at a long distance three times in a row now, which is almost two minutes faster than the pace I thought I would have.

Mostly, I’m surprised at being able to handle these long runs. I used to hate running two miles, and common logic generally suggests that if you hate two of something, signing up for eleven won’t be very pleasant. Congrats to running for being such a mold breaker.

#111 Sprouting

20 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

We’ve got growth! Hopefully in a couple months these guys will be the stars of summer hits like pesto sauce or mixed cocktails.

A good part of me was never expecting to see the seeds again once I buried them. Good job, nature.

Also while we’re on the topic of basic agriculture, I wanna shoutout Opportunity International’s micro loan program. Checked it out myself the other day and I’m impressed. Still learning the ropes of the microlending process, but learning by doing is the best.

#112 Gâteau de Crêpes á la Florentine

21 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

What’s that? Layered crêpes with béchamel sauce, spinach, and mushrooms.

My wife feeds me well.

So well I have more leftover for lunch today.

#113 Palabok

22 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Palabok is a really underrated Filipino noodle dish with its own distinct orange shrimp gravy, and toppings that usually include citrus, shrimp, and crushed peanuts or pork rinds.

I’ve also made it before, but I used a packet to make the gravy. My aunts insisted that it wouldn’t be that hard to make it from scratch, so I put it on my list of things to make.

Turns out, my aunts are actually culinary magicians. Anatto powder, the orange stuff in the gravy is a really stubborn ingredient and it was hard to get the texture right.

This probably won’t go down as the best item I made all year, but it was alright and I know exactly what I would do differently next time. I got some ideas for the next time I get to give it a shot.

#114 Spencer’s Butte Hike

23 April 2016 // Eugene, Oregon

Found myself on Spencer’s Butte. We’ve lived right next to it for close to a year now, but it’s taken quite a while for us to finally hike up there. Our last time was before we got married.

Went with a couple of friends, took my dog, and made i to the top before even having breakfast.

You can bet that Beignet loved every second of this. Every person we passed noted that she looked like the happiest creature alive.