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Portland Blog: This Week in Portland March 23 - March 30 2013

Welcome to the weekend, PDX! Every weekend, we have a new, all-local, Portland blog to share with you all. If you stumbled upon this, make sure to sign up or bookmark so you can get the latest Portland news, pictures, musings and Portland events. This weekend, we are delighted to welcome in spring! I'm pretty sure your reaction was similar to mine: a squeal of delight, a few cartwheels and half a dozen high-fives with the neighbors. Spring, spring, spring-- at long last, spring!!

First Day of Spring in Portland 2013

Spring in downtown Portland by Lorri Ely

Most Popular Portland Neighborhoods

The Pearl DistrictIrvingtonPiedmontBoiseAlberta ArtsSellwoodHawthorneNob Hill and Belmont.

If you are moving to Portland Oregon you simply must visit the popular neighborhoods - but, given our nearly 100 urban Portland neighborhoods, everyone has a different favorite so please do take some time and read about all of our nearly 100Portland Neighborhoods (neighborhood profiles, videos and more!) If you're moving to Portland and want to meet people or ask questions about how to get started, join our very popular Portland blog; a real Portland community chock full of chits, chats and Portland events!  We hope this page has been a helpful moving to Portland guide, but join our Portland community forum and ask any questions you have about moving to Portland Oregon--we are happy to help!

Learn more about Moving to Portland Oregon.


First Day of Spring in Portland 2013



Powell's Bookstore Picks

We love Powell's  Portland Book Review of the Day   Portland eBooks   Powell's Author Interviews



HOEDOWN by Rob Creighton Garrison

I live in an apartment. The apartment community in which I live is very neat and well-kept. Spring brings the landscaping crew out to trim the hedges and the grass, and plant new shrubbery and flowers where necessary. I love the aroma of newly-mown lawn as it wafts through the window of my office.

spring in portland

This is when living in an apartment sucks. I don't get to do any of that stuff.

Yes, I enjoy yardwork. When I was a kid my dad made sure I learned to chore up on weekends and on summer vacation from school. I ran the noisy gas-powered lawn-mower up and down, to and fro over the lawns front and back, under the merciless West Texas sun. In lieu of a properly-fitted grass catcher, we had a rake, so I had to scrape up all the grass by hand and dump it into a plastic-lined trash can. Then came the trimming around the fences in the backyard. Favorite part? My mother's rose bushes, which I suspect were cleverly disguised triffids who drew blood every time I went near them.

Of course I wasn't in love with the process then; it was a have-to thing, not an elective activity. What pale fat kid wants to trudge around behind a loud, vibrating, fuel vapor-spewing machine while losing a quart of bodily fluid every half-hour? Friends would drop by of a weekend afternoon (friends whose fathers cared nothing for character building or their sons' work ethic, the lucky jerks), to find me sweating and panting and flailing away at the pull cord trying to resuscitate the fuming beast because it had died for the third time within fifteen feet of travel. Go to a movie? Sure! Because you know, my dad wants only a third of the backyard cut this week, see, he's going for a theme. Idiots.

I would see the pity in their eyes as they would leave me in pursuit of Summer Fun, which was only fitting because I'd feel pretty damned pitiful. Sometimes my dad would come out to confirm it. “What's wrong? You look pitiful!” I remember vowing to myself that when I grew up I would have somebody else do this crap for my own yard because it sure wasn't going to be me.

But, bless me, later as an adult I grew to enjoy it. It took getting married to a fastidious woman who loves flower borders and sculpted emerald lawns, and who would do it all by herself if I didn't help her (which of course I wasn't going to allow because I know ammunition when I hear it being loaded for later use). Grudgingly I followed her out to the side yard of our apartment building on Southeast Belmont and helped her plow under the bark dust the landlord had lain instead of a proper lawn, and we leveled the ground as best we could and then I spread the grass seed while she pegged out the flower beds along the garage...

...and in two short weeks we saw that it was good! Compared to the pit with which we'd begun, the space now glowed with vibrant, healthy color. The neighbors in our building and the tenants in the building across the yard came out to actually thank us for our beautification efforts – and also thanked me for using a reel mower instead of a noxious and obnoxious gas-powered chewer. Soon we were having raucous lawn parties on the weekends. Nothing beats leading friends into ill-advised confessional inebriation on one's own lawn (well, it wasn't technically our lawn, but whatev). And I had enjoyed the process! Thereafter I needed little prompting to join the missus outdoors to nurture and maintain our small parcel.

portland oregon

                     Me working in the yard.  The image is a little distorted; must have spilled something on it.

Now we're back in an apartment and I'm relegated to living vicariously through the toil of the young landscaping crewmember striding around behind an edger in the green spaces outside our patio door. I'm tempted to ask him if I can have a go.

If you're an apartment dweller, or just want more opportunities to commune with the soil, the City of Portland'sParks and Recreation website has info on 47 community gardens located throughout our area. In particular, check out the Produce for People Program, which helps feed those suffering below the poverty line. The best kind of sweat is that shed for others in need. If you have kids, get them involved too. They'll thank you for it.

Just probably not right away.

angela higgins portland

            Someone else who has a knack:  Angela Higgins, friend and one of my bosses here at PortlandNeighborhood                       




The Portland Video of the Week

Skateboarding PDX


The Portland Photo of the Week

The Portland Photo of the Week is by Earl Thomas. Entitled "The Watcher", this fish bird is on the hunt. A great image! Thanks, Earl!

Grackle Bird


Earl wins a $20 gift certificate to a local fave and nationally recognized cult classic: Powell's Bookstore. 

"Keep books in circulation. Keep ideas alive." --Powells Bookstore


humbly made


Featured Portland Events this Week

Here's the latest roundup of our featured Portland events for you to enjoy!  Mark your calendars and go ahead-- it's free to add your own!


The Best Deals in Portland This Week

By Ross Seligman


 3716 NE 19TH AVE Portland, OR 97212



PDX homes

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2910 NE 42ND AVE Portland, OR 97213


PDX homes

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4750 NE GLISAN ST Portland, OR 97213



PDX homes

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717 NE 74th Ave Portland, OR 97213



PDX homes

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Visit our website where you can contact us and search all Portland metro area homes for sale and real estate from the RMLS, including neighborhood and school information:


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