Catrina is over in Amman. Irene and I are here in the Pacific Northwest. The Beginner’s Guide to Bend, our Bend Oregon blog, is seeing a lot of changes, shifts, and internal movement. I suppose you could say things are happening. So, without further ado, a little about the new owners of the (Eternal) Beginner’s Guide to Bend.
When CG passed us the baton, we took it upon ourselves to add “eternal” to the name of this here Bend Oregon blog. Why? Because we are eternal beginners. Always. And because coming at the world or the place we’ve lived in for years with a “beginner’s” mindset leaves the door open for seeing the things we see every day in a slightly different light. Or at least that’s what we hope and aim for on this Bend Oregon blog, and in life in general.
Bienvenidos, read on, and join our mailing list!
Who Does This Bend Oregon Blog Think She is?
Not sure, but here’s a little about Irene. And here are some words about me, Laura. We’re both poets who migrated to Bend Oregon from the NY/NJ (tristate if you will) area. No, we did not know one another before moving to Bend. Yes, we love our roots and where we came from. Yes, we love where we get to reside now. No, we are not amused (though we might humor you) when asked “what exit” we are off the Jersey Turnpike. Yes, we have been to the Jersey Shore and it is as real as you think it is.
Irene and her husband Mike run the Blank Pages Workshops at the Workhouse in Bend. They’re sweet monthly writing workshops you can attend for $25 a pop. And they’re worth it. Aside from being talented writers, Irene and Mike, they’re both trained and talented chefs. Seriously, the art of ( ) runs thick in their veins. Just fill in the blank and they’re probably doing it and doing it well. Also, here is some of Irene’s poetry.
Hm. Me? Well, talking about myself is not my favorite thing to do. So I’ll let the links do the talking, ok? Aside from this Bend Oregon blog, I do have this little site here and some poetry here and here. And I do race bicycles, which you can watch a little bit of in this short film. I love winter. And snowboarding. And sometimes write for The Vanilla Workshop and Patagonia’s blog called The Cleanest Line. And… anything else you want to know, just ask. I’m over talking about me.
Other Things Besides Our Bend Oregon Blog
Back to the royal We. Along with this neat Bend Oregon blog, Irene and I also run a creative content agency in Bend. It’s called frank. and we’d love to work with you if you if you’d love to work with us. But only if we want to work with you. There’s also this thing called The Stay Project that we started with another poet-friend of ours, B. It’s a neat creative/socially aware endeavor, if we don’t say so ourselves. You should check it out.
UPDATE – October 2016: Hey everyone! So, I never thought I’d leave Bend, but I got married and, well, life changed a bit. The three of us (including Betty, of course) moved to Amman, Jordan for my husband’s work. I’ve turned over this Bend Oregon blog to two whip-smart artists/writers who will carry the torch, helping y’all keep in touch with the real Bend experience. Hopefully you’ll see their bios here at some point.
In the meantime, if you’re curious about expat life in the Middle East, you can find my new blog here. If you want to know how I felt about leaving Bend, Oregon, read this. Do I miss it? Hell, yes, but I’m enjoying the adventure of it all. Who knows? We may end up back in Central Oregon in a year or two. We’ll see.
Here’s what I wrote when I launched this Bend Oregon blog in late 2012:
Who the heck is Catrina Gregory?
I’m a city girl living in the outdoor capital of the world.
I spend my days writing, hiking the most beautiful trails ever with my Argentinian rat hound Betty, feeling insanely grateful, seeking alternatives to the omnipresent puffy jacket, gazing at my stilettos longingly, and generally exploring my own backyard.
(Central Oregon is a pretty sweet backyard.)
I’m Oregon born and bred, but I fled my lovely home state the moment they gave me my Marist High School diploma (go Spartans). I went to college in Seattle (go Falcons), then lived in New York City (go Knicks) and Los Angeles (go Lakers) before finding my way back to Oregon (go Ducks), Bend to be exact, in September of 2012. I love it here, but I haven’t had a decent glass of French white since I arrived.
I’m a freelance writer, specializing in web content and breezy, conversational copy. I help big companies name stuff, and help small companies generate fun and meaningful words to feed their content machines.
I’m a sculptor (lost wax, mostly jewelry), an operations geek (I have this weird compulsion to make everything more efficient, unless it involves my life), and a food fanatic (local, farm-to-table, ethical, ethnic, slow, etc, — and pretty much any Mexican food I can get my hands on, especially when pork is involved).
I’m fluent in 8.5 languages, good at everything I do, and I’m exceptionally graceful. I have perfect eyesight, floss and meditate twice a day, and I’m a lingerie model. I follow college sports religiously. My nails are always perfectly manicured and tyuhij73w…………… Sorry, I just fell asleep typing this totally fabricated paragraph.