2015 Culinary Staycation Day 1

We started at The Midoint Food & Drink.

This restaurant is located midway between our home in Happy Valley and the city. Also, it is located between Foster and Powell on 52nd. I am assuming the latter is the reason for the name. (insert laugh) I read about this place online. It had several reviews and was in the category of “local, easy, comforting, and not pretentious in the glossy-magazine and fancy chef way” If, indeed, that is a category.

It is an older spot, and while the name sounds like a pub it is in fact a diner. We were seated immediately and the menu was easy, filled with great options, and ordering was not a test in culinary knowledge. I ordered “The Downtowner” and the better half ordered “The 2 Egg Scramble” which he added tomatoes to. He actually said “would it be weird to add tomatoes?”, to which Violet (who was darling and quick with the coffee to be refilled) made it clear that his idea was brilliant. Other half enjoyed that moment. (mental note to take cues from Violet). The coffee was hot and good, and the food, amazing. Here is what came out of my mouth: “These are the best hashbrowns I think I have ever had”. They were simple, buttery, and if you added the house made green sauce (lovingly made by violet with tomatillos, jalapenos and a host of other items) you could easily clean your plate.


During my meal, Violet treated everyone like family, talked about the butter cookies that were fresh made, and allowed me to bestow her with my new found full education on the history of ketchup.


So, East Siders….get your butts over there and fill that restaurant. Also – expect to meet the amazing sisters who run it soon on The Simple Kitchen.


Midpoint Food & Drink

  • 3524 SE 52nd Avenue
  • Portland, Oregon
  • 503-774-1164
  • OPEN: 8am – 10pm
  • PRICE: Reasonable
  • STYLE American, Family Friendly

What’s for lunch?

It was the hubalubs birthday on Wednesday, so he really got to drive the meals. So, for lunch I asked, at the very least, that he select a place on Division as I was so behind on the new places over there. He did as I requested, and selected Atlas Pizza. He is a pizza fanatic and I follow Atlas on Instagram so this was perfect for me!! So, we find parking a block away, which is awesome. The thing about Division, if you have lived here a couple decades (ahem) like I have is that a lot of the new restaurants and volume of traffic is new. This area was and is still a residential area, now with a long strip of wine, beer, food and other noveltie. If you are traveling to our city and want to enjoy our culinary delights, the odds are stacked in the favor of you landing on SE Division one or two times.


Atlas Pizza was a perfect experience for us. We walked in and I was greeted by a friendly smile, immediate assistance and awesome music. I looked around and saw my 20’s on the walls: show posters everywhere for Satyricon. I loved Satyricon and used to go there, listen to music, dance and drink a lot of cheap beer. After  the concerts, there was a souvlaki joint right outside that was always open and we would grab that and eat it on our trek (on foot) back to our apartment in NW Portland. This is “pre The Pearl days” Whoever hung those posters knows exactly what I am talking about.

I Digress.

We ordered a Large Pepperoni and Pineapple. I grabbed an IPA of the tap and we chilled. I enjoyed some serious Hall and Oates music and we both watched the Original version of Willy Wonka on the TV. We were surrounded by working pinball machines, bright cheery windows and I want to point out – this place is CLEAN. I am a clean freak and in that type of lighting I can tell you that it is clean. People came and went picking up slices for here or to go, it was a warm bustling, and overall just a FUN place to be. Especially with an early afternoon buzz. The pizza was HUGE, it was delicious and I managed to eat 2 pieces. The crust was thin (we like that) and the sauce was amazing. So – yes, go here. Eat the pizza. Get a large one and take the rest home – it was AWESOME later that evening after some beer tasting…..



Atlas Pizza

  • 35700 SE Division Street
  • Portland, Oregon
  • 503-232-3004
  • Open: 11:30am – 10:00pm
  • Price: reasonable
  • Food: Pizza, Family Friendly, GREAT service

 What is next?

So we decide to keep rolling like food gangsters. Book a room at Edgefield and get an overnight sitter. I mean, it IS the big guy’s birthday, right? So….lets soak in the soaking tub and drink beer.


We love it out there at McMenamins Edgefield. It is the easiest way to get away for 24 hours, still be close to the kids, but let our hair down at a reasonable price. That is how we see Edgefield. We got a room, checked in, hit the soaking tub, then went beer tasting! We enjoyed a cheeseboard, and I was pleased by some SERIOUSLY sticky cheeses!!!  Then later, had a simple light dinner and went to bed by 8:30 – we have a lot of calories to consume tomorrow!!  Tune in tomorrow for the next installment!


Everything Is Gonna Be OK

Nothing is more humbling when you are running through your life, thinking “Wow, look at all of this I have to do in a day…how do I get it done?” Then in one swoop a close friend is diagnosed with cancer and your father in law is in and out of consciousness for weeks at the hospital with heart problems you cannot even wrap your MIND around.  Then, out of nowhere, a colleague commits suicide.

Insert silence.

You get promotions, you accept responsibilities, your kids grow, you do the best you can.  I used to focus on being the best nonstop.  Now I focus on being “the best ME that I can TODAY.”  That means making sure people know you are thinking of them and that they are loved.  Communicating with family, work.  Always work (don’t worry about next weeks duties and half-ass today…KILL IT today, and then do the same tomorrow).

My boundaries are much more defined.  For work, I work hard, I go hard, and I am available when not there, BUT, my time with my family is non negotiable.  I am not cheating my employer, I am offering them a happy, well rounded and satisfied individual.  I realized that, as a leader of mostly women, I need to show them what grace in power looks like.  Humility, love, respect, hard work, embracing errors, and laughing at yourself.  At all times growing.  Never stop growing.  THIS is what balance looks like, but it is a daily internal struggle.  All moms feel like being away from their kids for work will harm their kids.  It won’t.  It just won’t.  However you better stay on top of them and their progress and always be there for them.  There is NOTHING that I do professionally that is more important than a sick child.  Nothing.

How do I respond to all of this craziness?  I am losing myself in my kids laughs.  I am looking into theloving blue eyes of my husband more, and I am thinking. Thinking about how fleeting it all is.  How this time we have is short, and that anything can happen.  So, I guess I just do that.  I hope.  I just hope that it will all turn out for the best.

Momma and Montana

So slow down friends.  Just do today really well.

Everything’s gonna be ok.