Sunday, May 18, 2014

Day Tripper

Seems like every outing our family takes involves food. I am very OK with this, given the gorgeous abundance available where we live. Saturday mornings are no exception and it is a great way to introduce your kids to new seasons and flavors. The Lake Oswego Farmers Market held their season opener on May 17th. It has been long awaited in this family and thanks to the education such markets provide, my children have learned first hand about local foods and how they are grown. Our visits to the various markets in our amazing city have offered a free invitation to sample the true flavors of nature's bounty. I love, as a result of farmers markets, the opportunities to develop kid's creativity and palate by trying new flavors. So, on a Saturday morning I love to head down with the kids and dad to help choose our foods to buy for the week. Surprisingly the choices aren't just confined to bags of Kettle Korn. Rather, the kids are starting to choose fresh heads of broccoli, farmer's cheese and varietal carrots to fill our bags. And, of course, dont forget the fresh berries. Saturday evenings then lay the foundation to prepare what we purchased that morning. It gives our kids a sense of ownership in family dinner as we have both chosen and prepared the ingredients together for some excellent family style meals. While in Lake Oswego, it is a good idea to get some pastries and coffee at either St. Honore Bakery or a bakery market vendor, located in the same Millenium city park. The cinnamon rolls and chocolate croissants are our kid's particular favorites. Once we have strolled through downtown Lake Oswego and pet all the dogs we can, located in the outdoor free doggy day care, we proceed up to Tryon Creek State Park just a few blocks away for a family hike. Terrain is easy and definitely family friendly. Dogs on leashes are welcomed and there is a fantastic nature store on site with some very cool exhibits. If one is looking for something simpler take a stroll around the lake at the farmers market and downtown Lake Oswego to check out the amazing local art sculptures on display, crafted by local artists. Thanks to the Lake Oswego Arts Council, our town has been graced with some breathtaking talent in what I consider to be an outdoor gallery. The fun thing, the art continues to change and expand, allowing new artists to showcase their craft in unique ways. Our kids have thoroughly enjoyed our evening art walks and is a lovely way to spend a summer evening. This year we have the new addition of 1.00 matinee movies at the newly renovated Lake Theater located (naturally) on the lake. A great hot summer afternoon boredom buster. Speaking of movies, a totally free option is available for July and August at Millenium City Park. Movies in the park is a relaxing way to spend a warm evening with the family. Pack up lawn chairs, snacks and blankets and head down for the evening. Snacks are available for purchase but we love to pack a picnic and pop our own corn for the event. Or, even better, just keep it simple by purchasing Tillamook Ice Cream milkshakes located at Lake Oswego Ice Creamery, located one block away. Whichever events or activities you choose for your family, do remember these are budget friendly family outings the whole family can appreciate, but I do have a word of caution. Plan on making a day of it because once you arrive in this gorgeous lakeside burg, you aren't going to be in a hurry to leave.



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