Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Fall Fun

Our fall is spectacular in the South Willamette Valley of Oregon right now.  Beautiful colors, brilliant sunshine, warm temperatures in day, with cool mornings to give you that "fall feeling," and activities for fun on every front.  We've harvested our garden, picked from the pumpkin patch, and decorated to get in the spirit of things. 

Pumpkins from our very own pumpkin patch
 Since we're in the heart of wine country, let's talk October party options.  Friday, October 25, kick off the Halloween party season at Domaine Meriwether's 1st Annual Halloween Soiree with live music, wine and beer, and a costume contest.

Then on October 31, if you aren't staying home for the Trick or Treaters or walking the neighborhood with your own kids, head on over to Territorial Vineyards and Wine Company in Eugene's colorful Whiteaker District from 5 to 10 pm.  Sport your favorite costume, enjoy lots of camaraderie, great wine, snacks, and tons of fun.


Keep your costume and your dancing shoes handy for the next Friday, November 1, at nearby Pfeiffer Winery's Halloween bash with Cal and Shelly James live music, food, wine and dancing.  Whew, we're danced out already.

For all you college sports fans, this is the place. We're just about 30 minutes away from college sports both north and south.  To the south,  The University of Oregon is hosting UCLA on Saturday, October 26 at 4 pm, and more games, home and away to come in November.  The Ducks are "tough enough to wear pink," with pink helmets showing support for the fight against women's cancers.  

To the north, Oregon State University, is hosting Stanford, on Saturday, October 26 at 7:30 pm.  followed by another home game hosting USC on Friday, November 1 at 6 pm.  


Cheers to fall.  Come join us at the farm around the campfire.  

Friday, August 2, 2013

Summer in the Oregon Countryside

We’re in “deep summer” here in the Willamette Valley in Oregon.  For the most part temperatures are the “perfect” summer weather.  Hot enough for sunning and a dip in the pool and cool enough for morning garden work or enjoying an evening hike or a sunset horseback ride.  But even during our couple of weeks with temperatures in the 90’s, eventually, unlike my growing up years in the Midwest, we have cooler temperatures in the late evening and at night.  Relief with temperatures in the 50’s arrives in the darkness, and unlike the Midwest of my childhood, the humidity hovers in the low percentiles. 
Riding the vineyard is great in summer

And, we’re green, flowers are blooming, vegetables are growing, County Fairs and music festivals are underway, wine tasting rooms are busy (serving lots of chilled white wine), and life is good. 

Basil growing for delicious salads and pasta

So, what to see and do in the Oregon Summer?  Here at The Farm, we are in Lane County within 30 minutes of the City of Eugene.  To the north of us, we are also just minutes from the Benton County line, and just over 30 minutes from the City of Corvallis.  Both counties and both communities offer an abundance of charm and activities, and of course both communities are University towns with nationally acclaimed sports action. 

If you’re planning a visit to Oregon, or even if you already live here, a great place to check out all our area has to offer is to look up information on the local tourism websites.  For Lane County, the events calendar for Travel Lane County:  Eugene, Cascades,and Coast is the place start.  For Benton County, and the City of Corvallis, look up Visit Corvallis for all the latest information on that adjoining area. 
Pfeiffer Winery with great wine in a beautiful setting, just four miles away

Here are a few highlights of summer and fall fun to the NORTH of us:

June 21 to September 22Heart of Willamette Wineries Summertime Wine Tour.  Pick up a passport for $20 at the Visit Corvallis Office or at designated wineries enjoy free wine tastings and an opportunity to win a free night at a bed and breakfast. 
All Summer LongMid-Valley Sip Trip offers great choices of hand crafted beverages, including beer, cider, and mead.  Download a map and take a beverage tour.
August 1 -3Benton County Fair and NPRA Rodeo.  Enjoy the fun of a county fair with food, music, and rides, as well as an opportunity to watch professional rodeo. 

 And to the SOUTH of us, here are some options:

Weekend Winery Fun:  Wineries in the area are bustling on summer weekends with tastings from about noon to late afternoon.  Many of the wineries are open Friday nights with twilight tastings, live music, and delicious food.  Check out the Eugene, Cascades, and Coast Events Calendar for some options.  Visit the South Willamette Wineries Association website for a list of wineries in the area and a map to find.
August 5, 7:30 pm:  Catch LyleLovett and his Large Band at the Silva Concert Hall in Eugene
Summer and Early Fall Markets:  The area has many outdoor and farmers’ markets with everything from crafts to produce to food stands to entertainment.  The Eugene, Cascades and Coast EventsCalendar lists many options for great family entertainment and shopping.  

Monday, February 4, 2013

Show Time

Life in the beautiful Oregon countryside with horses and family and friends is truly a gift.  As we gear up for the coming spring and summer with the new bed and breakfast business, we spent time this weekend with the foundation of our lives here, our horses.

With six horses in tow, that's two trips of three each, we headed off to the Oregon Horse Center for their winter fun show.  We're only 20 minutes away from the Horse Center, so it's an easy trip.  Friday afternoon was horse and "stuff" transport.  There is always lots of "stuff" when you go to a horse show.  All the stuff to take care of the horses and all the stuff people need to show horses, like sparkling clean horse equipment, and new shirts.
Khira and Moreno and Lynne and Lucero ready for Gaited  English Pleasure
 Saturday the focus of the competition was for English style riding and Sunday the focus was Western style riding.  Many horses can do a little of both, and our Paso Fino Horses are very versatile.  Paso Finos are "gaited horses," which means that they move their feet in a unique four-beat gait that is very smooth to ride.  Tennessee Walking Horses, Missouri Fox Trotters, Mountain Horses, and Icelandic Horses are also considered gaited horses.
Brittney and Lucero and Khira and Moreno set for Gaited Western Pleasure
We have a great crew here at Synergy Stables of people who lease our horses and ride them on a regular basis and people who board their own horses here.
Lynne & Lucero, winners of Paso Fino Country Pleasure at the 2012 Oregon State Fair
Lynne has been with us almost from the beginning, our very first leaser here, riding Lucero and forming a wonderful bond with him.  She wrote about their relationship in a heart warming story for the Northwest Paso Fino Horse Association. 

Brittney and Lucero ready for Gaited Western Equitation

Brittney has been with us over a year and a half, starting with working in the stable and now a leaser, who has done a great job developing her equestrian skills.  Khira boards her mustang Salita with us and also rides the Paso Finos.  She has been with us almost a year and has come a long way as a young horse woman and rider.
Khira tacking up Moreno for Gaited Western Pleasure.

We had a great weekend, full of fun, a few frustrations, lots of learning and lots to be proud of.  There's nothing like the horse and human bond. Proof of that in the Budweiser Beer Superbowl 13 commercial featuring the Budweiser Clydesdales.  Not a dry eye in America as people watched the bonding of horse and trainer.

Our proof is in our little table of ribbons and prizes and the warmth of our weekend memories.