Category Archives: Health

S.F. Restaurant Tips

As part of my facelift for the blog, I have included a list of restaurant suggestions on the right sidebar. San Francisco has some of the most amazing restaurants. These are just a few of my favorites, and I will add to the list over time. No matter what kind of food you are looking for, you can find it in San Francisco. If you click on the name, it will take you to that restaurant’s website. Listed below are a few tips that might help you have a more enjoyable experience eating out in San Francisco:

1. Make Reservations. Some places do not take reservations, and some only reserve a table an hour in advance. Do some research.

2. Expect to Wait. Without reservations, and sometimes with reservations, you can expect to wait for a table in San Francisco. I have waited a few times for over an hour for a table, but the average wait is about 20 – 40 minutes. If you are visiting, this may be a shock. If you live here, then you know this is just what happens. The food is worth the wait.

3. Quality vs. Quantity. Coming from the Midwest, I was both surprised and happy to find that the portion size on the West Coast is reasonable. For example, in the Midwest if you go out for breakfast many of the meals come with sides of hotcakes, biscuits and gravy, or fried potatoes. In S.F., your breakfast meal may come with a side of wheat toast, a cup or fruit, or a salad made up of many types of greens. The greens and fruit will be exceptional. When you leave a San Francisco restaurant you probably won’t feel full to the gills, but you will feel satisfied.

4. Taste. It is all about the taste, presentation, and how the chef combined certain ingredients. Just a simple thing like hot chocolate can be so different depending on the restaurant’s interpretation of it. It is amazing to see how the different chefs prepare calamari.

5. Price. Be prepared to spend a little more when eating out in San Francisco. Honestly, be prepared to spend a little more on everything in San Francisco. It is not an inexpensive town, but it is worth it. When going with a group of friends, the most common thing to do at the end of the meal is to split it evenly by everyone throwing in a credit or debit card.

6. Experience. Eating out in in this town is all about the total experience. If you do plan something for after supper, then make sure that it is scheduled for way after the meal so that you are not rushed. It is all about taking some relaxing time, catching up with friends, and eating some exquisite food.

7. Please Tip. As I mentioned above, San Francisco is an expensive town to visit and live in. All you have to do is visit realtor.com to prove this (and the market is currently down). Therefore, I ask that you remember this when tipping your waiter or waitress. Generally, a 10 to 20 percent tip is appropriate, but I would ask that you lean more toward the 20 percent.

Bon Appetit

–Mike

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Filed under California, Entertainment, Health, S.F. Restaurants, San Francisco, San Francisco Tourist

Sights and Sounds

Below are pictures from the Portland Farmer’s Market on Saturday, May 16th. I bought fresh strawberries, asparagus, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and a zucchini.

Portland Farmer's Market 1

Portland Farmer's Market 4

Portland Farmer's Market 6

Portland Farmer's Market 2

Portland Farmer's Market 3

Portland Farmer's Market 7

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Filed under Cooking, Health, NW Entertainment, pictures, Portland, Portland Culture

Comfort Places

Recently, I have been feeling under the weather and a little down. Nothing major, just a normal cold. However, it was bad enough at times for me to retreat in my mind to my comfort places. You know the places I’m talking about. They are the ones that make you feel secure and calm when you are a little depressed or not feeling well. I have listed a few of my comfort places below:

1. Grandma and Grandpa’s House. I used to love to stay at my grandparent’s house when I was young. I can remember the feeling of stepping from a fresh shower after a day of working in the yard. My feet would sink in the newer carpet as I walked to theLa-Z-Boy and prepared for an Saturday evening of watching old black and white scary movies with grandma. Grandpa always went to sleep early, but that meant that in the morning I would probably wake up to the smell of fresh pumpkin bread. Grandpa made pumpkin bread all of the time and froze the extra loafs. Whenever anyone stopped by the house, grandpa would run to the freezer and give them a loaf to take home.

2. Wheat Fields. There is nothing better than standing out in the wheat fields or near the wheat fields on a hot, Western Kansas day. The wind hits the wheat and makes you feel like you are in an ocean with golden brown waves. The heat hits you and massages all of the tension out of your body.

3. St. John Vianney Seminary Chapel. My first year of college, I went to the seminary which was on the campus of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. The seminary had a small side chapel that students could use for daily meditation and reflection. It was very simple in design. All of the walls were white, and it had a couple of sky lights. I remember it being very peaceful and calm. Basically, it seemed like a nice big hug to a young college student several states away from home.

4. Leaf Cookies. This isn’t really a place, but an item. When I was a kid and had been really sick, mom would make me leaf shaped sugar cookies. They had to be leaf shaped without frosting in order for the “healing” powers to take place. I don’t know if it was the leaf cookies or just the realization that she loved me enough to do this special task just for me, but it definitely helped me to feel better.

I think that comfort places are important to have in this life. Let’s face it, life can be pretty tough sometimes, and I think it is important to have more secure times to reflect on. Honestly, I think it is mentally healthy. I’m feeling a little better already. Darn cold. I wonder if there is a nearby bakery that makes leaf cookies?

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Filed under Family, Health, Human Nature

Allergies. How do you combat this seasonal enemy?

When I moved away from Tulsa, OK three months ago I thought that I was leaving behind a good deal of allergy problems. Tulsa has a lot of environmental factors (natural and man-made) that make it a difficult place to live for anyone who suffers from allergies. In Tulsa, it is not a question of do you take allergy medicine, but the question is what type of allergy medication do you take. Unfortunately, Portland, OR has not been to kind on my allergies either. At the moment I am blaming it on the fact that we haven’t had a freeze and it is already December 11th.

I have tried most of the prescription medication, and all of the over the counter medication, with a small amount of success. My latest combination is Zyrtec, Mucinex D, and Advair, but I want to investigate more natural and homeopathic solutions. One approach that I am going to do is take a teaspoon of local honey every morning. In order to make honey, bees often use the allergens in the environment. The theory is that if you take a teaspoon of local honey every morning your body will get used to the allergens and not react to them.

Please post any ideas you have that might help with allergies.

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Filed under Health