Gifts from Bend, OR

Live in Bend, Oregon and want to give a gift from Bend, Oregon? Follow my local gift giving series!

Green your coffee routine

Save 23 lbs of waste this year and start using a reusable coffee cup to keep you caffeinated.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Respecting the Rhubarb 2014

Yes, I haven't blogged in a while ... I've been too busy enjoying my family and making the following rhubarb recipes! As usual, I had to document my adventures so I have something to look back on next year! I will definitely be making the BBQ sauce again along with perfecting the yogurt cake so I can enter it into the La Pine Annual Rhubarb Festival in 2015!

Here goes the 2014 recipes  ...

Substituted cherries for the strawberries!
These were a lot of fun and easy to eat!

Rhubarb Chipotle Barbaque Sauce
added 2 teaspoons of chipotle chili powder from Savory Spice Shop

Here's the recipe:
Two large stalks of rhubarb, chopped (about two cups).
Three quarters of a cup of water.
One onion, finely chopped.
Two to three garlic cloves, crushed.
One cup of ketchup.
2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder (I used some from Savory Spice Shop)
One half of a cup of pure maple or golden syrup.
One half of a cup of packed brown sugar.
One quarter of a cup of apple cider or rice vinegar.
One tablespoon Worcestershire sauce.
One tablespoon grainy mustard.

In a small saucepan, bring rhubarb and water to a simmer and cook for five to six minutes, until the rhubarb is very soft. Pour into a bowl and set aside.

In the same saucepan, heat a drizzle of oil over medium-high heat and cook the onion for three to four minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another minute or two.

Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer; cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the mixture thickens.

Puree with a hand-held immersion blender or cool and puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Use as you would any barbecue sauce on grilled meats, in baked beans or drizzled on burgers. Makes about two cups

made this recipe without the strawberries

made this recipe without any modifications

adapted from this recipe
I didn't put the glaze on and I substituted rhubarb for the strawberries and added a full vanilla bean.
This was my favorite recipe of the whole season. I made it twice. 

I also tried the following season items when I was out and about!

Bonta Gelato AND Addy Mac's Ice Cream

Rhubarb strawberry fritters from Sweetheart Donuts in Bend, Oregon

Finally, a goal of mine was to try a rhubarb beer! I tried the Rhubarb Wheat Festival Ale from Sunriver Brewing at the Rhubarb Festival in La Pine, Oregon. I will definitely be back at the festival again entering my yogurt cake!

Until next year! I actually have some rhubarb left so I may make more BBQ sauce.
Until then, store your rhubarb in foil to keep it fresh!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

[Video] Options for reusable coffee cups

 According to Carry Your Cupthe average American office worker uses about 500 disposable cups
every year. Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee per day or equivalent to 146 billion cups of coffee per year, making the United States the leading consumer of coffee in the world. Americans throw away 25 billion styrofoam coffee cups every year If you buy just one cup of coffee or tea in a disposable cup every day, you’ll end up creating about 23 lbs of waste in one year.

YIKES! That's a lot of paper and just an example of one small way you can conserve waste each year!

My rule when buying a reusable coffee cup is NO plastic because who wants their latte with a shot of leaching plastic?

This video explores my favorite three options: ceramic coffee cups, Hydro Flask and Silipints!


I was given products in the blog post to try. The opinions are my own. This blog post contains affiliate links that I make money from. Thanks for supporting my family's journey of going green gradually.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Bend Local Gifts: Coffee

Living in the Pacific Northwest has made me a coffee and beer snob. I partially blame my husband as he insists on drinking good coffee at home. I tried to buy bulk Starbuck beans at Costco, but he insists locally roasted coffee.

I love love love Lone Pine Coffee Roasters.  Family owned by Scott and Anna Witham, their little out of the way coffee shop is a treat to visit, hold meetings or pick up a specialty latte. My favorite blend of theirs is Tin Pan Alley Blend.

Popular local coffee house, Back Porch Roasters, offers a variety of blends for the coffee lover in your life. My favorite is their Back Porch Blend which consists of Costa Rica La Magnolia, a sun-dried coffee from La Minita's Tres Rios mill and El Salvador Piedra Grande.

Strictly Organic has to be (I think) the original local coffee roaster. When I lived in Omaha, I would buy this for my dad each year, as he's a fellow coffee snob (must be genetics).  Certified organic, my favorite blend is the smokey Jitterbug.

What's your favorite coffee shop in Bend?

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Bend Local Gifts: Ruffwear, Bend Pet Express

Fido needs to love during the holidays! Ruffwear is a manufacturer of canine outdoor gear in Bend, Oregon.

The company  sells harnesses, dog packs, lifejackets, dog boots, collars, leashes, and dog beds.

The company's first product was a collapsible dog bowl and has evolved from there.

If you're looking to support a local pet store, stop by Bend Pet Express where they have EVERYTHING for dogs, cats and other critters.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bend Local Gifts: Nashelle Jewelry

What girl doesn't love jewelry? I remember Nashelle founder, Heather Straw,  working at a downtown Bend boutique. I can't recall the name but when I'd walk in, she's be hunched over at the counter making jewelry.

Since then, her operation has expanded! Movie stars are buying her jewelry AND big time magazines are showing her jewelry in fashion photo shoots. 

Nashelle uses recycled 14k gold fill and sterling silver material, which fits perfectly with my family’s green/eco-friendly mission. All made in the USA, they support many charity causes including Feeding America, Food for the Hungry, the Family Access Network, KIDS Center and their Pay it Forward line which benefit causes that are close to their heart, such as East Coast Disaster Relief in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.  

I'm dying for a personalized hand stamped necklace with my children's name on it or EVEN their initials with charms. What pieces do you like? 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Bend Local Gifts: Beauty products

Even though Bend, Oregon feels like a small town, we do have some amazing bath and beauty products that are eco-friendly, organic and use only the good stuff to make you smell good. These would make great hostess gifts or an inexpensive gift for a girlfriend.

Angelina Organic Skincare started in 2007 and offers face, bath, body, massage, aromatherapy along with a Mama and Baby line.

There products don't contain the following:  ingredients considered potentially harmful, mineral oils, irradiated ingredients, herbicide or pesticide residues and GMOs. They don't test on animals and always use recyclable and reusable packaging.

DANI Naturals offers aromatic reed diffusers, soy wax candles, hand wash, organic lotions, shampoo, conditioners, shower gels and sugar scrubs. I love their candles and am a big fan of their sugar scrubs.

Their products  are made with 100% vegetable oil based with soy waxes essential oils and organic ingredients free of petroleum, paraben, artificial colors, dyes, animal by-products, or sodium or ammonia laurel/laureth sulfates.

I'm a big fan of Bend Soap Company's goat milk soap. My husband can't get enough of the "Pine" scented soap either (guess what will be in his stocking). Johnson family started making this soap after their son was diagnosed with Eczema and their story is quite amazing.

There's also a new company I haven't tried called Coco's Haven. Here's their mission from their Facebook page: We're an all natural line of coconut oil lip and skin care products that are sustainably made and build a safe haven for all. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to stop human trafficking and empower victims.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Bend Local Gifts: The Artist Series, Vol. 1 Silipints

Artist series Silipints 
If you live in Bend, you'll notice Silipints everywhere. Just ask my nephew, Mitchell. He became obsessed with then during his visit from Nebraska. He had to go home with one.

There is some debate in the green community about  silicone products ... are they really eco-friendly? Are they safe to use?

Silipint was started by Bend resident Rick Fredland who created the world’s first silicone dog bowl, the Aqua-Fu. Silipints are made from 100% food grade silicone. They are BPA free, unbreakable, dishwasher safe, freezer safe, microwave safe AND you can customize them. I believe they are eco-friendly and we own a couple.

Their latest artist series features two local Bend, Oregon artists, Lisa Smith and Adam Haynes. I'm really drawn to Lisa's design because I have the "That's Amore" print hanging in my house. I'm hoping Santa stuffs my stocking with both the white and red cup.

To learn more about Silipints, visit their website! They're offering shipping off $50 or more!


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