Want to know my favorite nature park in Hillsboro??????

I love that there are so many nature parks here on the westside, and my favorite is Orenco Woods Nature Park.  Why?  The park is located close to the NextHome Realty Connection Orenco office which means it’s a great place to go for a walk with my friend, Rebecca when we take a lunch break.

The park features 1.6 miles of trail where if you’re lucky you may have the opportunity to see blue heron and beavers along the the wetlands of Rock Creek.  You also may be fortunate to see red tailed hawk, black tail deer and as well as other wildlife.  It’s a fabulous place to take the kiddos thanks to the natural play area.

If you are looking for a place to hold a birthday party, celebrate time with family or friends be sure to contact the City of Hillsboro and reserve the covered picnic area.

The park is considered a metro park and traditionally dogs and other pets are not allowed.  However Orenco Woods connects to the regional Rock Creek Trail so metro does make an exception.  All dogs must be kept on a lease and please be kind to other patrons of the park and pick up after your floof.

One of my favorite things about the park is that when I’m walking to it I get to go by a little lending library.  I’m an avid reader and am slightly obsessed with little lending libraries.  If you find it I hope that there is something that interests you and your able to take advantage.

You can Never Have too Many Books Right?

Add a subheadingI love to read, and while I enjoy audio books and reading on my eReader there is something special about holding a physical book in your hands.  It’s probably why I love buying books so much.  The problem is, what do you do with all of those books because at some point in time you run out of places to keep them.  Helping get rid of some of those books is where this week’s local business of the week comes into play.  The Arcade Book Exchange is a used bookstore that has been serving the needs of Washington County readers for over 43 years, and the amazing thing is that you can trade your old reads for some new ones.

The Arcade Book Exchange carries a large selection of newer release, novels, romance, mystery, horror, spy/adventure, sci-fi/fantasy, westerns, children/young adult, self-help, inspirational, historical, true crime, biographies, category romance, military and so much more.  You are sure to find something you’ll love.  They focus primarily in paperback books, but you can find a selection of collectible and hardbound books as well.  In addition, if you aren’t ready to venture out and go brows books in person they offer an online selection of books too.

It should be noted that Arcade Book Exchange does not purchase books, you can only trade them.  So you may be wondering what does the process look like when you trade books?  Well here’s what you need to know about their trade policy:

You will receive 1/4 of the cover price on all incoming books in in-store credit.
Outgoing books can be purchased at 1/2 the cover price.

Half of your PURCHASE price may be deducted off of your store credit.
The remaining half must be paid with cash, check, debit or credit card.

Bring in two $8 books. You will receive $4 in store credit.
Take out two $8 books you will pay $4 in cash/debit/check and $4 will be deducted off your store credit.

All “CASH” books (with white cash sticker) are eligible to be taken off your store credit.

Credit has no expiration and no cash value.

So, the next time you are in need of a new book, why not exchange some books you no longer want and get some new ones.  The Arcade Book Exchange is located at 136 SE 3rd Ave, Suite 300, Hillsboro, Oregon and their phone number is (503) 648-5821

My 2020 Reading Challenge –

My Copy of May 2020 GraphicsI am really blessed to work with so many agents who love to read, just like I do.  They have pushed me to stretch my reading goal for this year from 20 books to 52.  So far I’ve read 17 books thanks to Audible, my Kindle app on my phone as well as good old fashioned physical books.  I sense that I will start to get through more books the longer the stay-at-home order is in effect because it’s a good substitute for the self-care items I can no longer do.  So, if you happen to be looking for a new book to read here is a recap of the 17 books I’ve read so far:


  1.  You Are A Badass:  How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life  by Jen Sincero – This is a self-help book that gives you some ideas on how to identify those things that are self-sabotaging beliefs, ways to change your thinking, how to set goals, learn to love yourself and work towards getting the things you want in life.  Jen uses humor, and some foul language to talk about how she used the steps she mentions to change her life.
  2. Tiaras & Terror (Aloha Lagoon Mysteries #13) by Anne Marie Stoddard – This is one of the books I read on my Kindle app.  I like to sit and eat lunch or dinner by myself out and read (not that this is something I get to do right now).  This series is just fun.  It takes place in Kauai and introduces you to several characters that return in different ways in each book.  Every book has a different type of murder occur in the quaint, quiet resort town of Aloha Lagoon.  Our main character typically finds themselves as the main suspect in the murder investigations and therefore works to clear their name.  They are typically a quick read and are just fun.
  3. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by JK Rowling.  This is a re-read for me thanks to the podcast Potterless.  I love Harry Potter and when I don’t feel like really thinking about what I am going to read next the series is a go to for me.
  4. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller.  I decided to read this book after watching the show on Hulu that is based off the book.  The book takes place during World War II and follows a bombardier named Yosarian who finds himself with a Colonel that is always upping the mission count.  Therefore Yosarian finds himself doing everything he can to get out of flying more missions because he just wants to go home.  This book is a little hard to follow and it could have been because I used Audible, however in the end it was really good and very funny.
  5. Fascinating Facts About Hawaii by Jim Loomis.  Hawaii is my most favorite place in the world.  This super fast read was fun, and I learned some interesting facts such as there are more 120 islands actually make up Hawaii.
  6. The Year of Less:  How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life Is Worth More Than Anything You Can By in a Store by Cait Flanders.  Cait has always approached different issues in her life by doing extreme (by some folks standards) challenges.  In this one she made a goal to not spend anything over a year (other than in the categories she deemed essential).  I loved the concept of this book because I know I have lots of stuff, it’s cluttering my home, and I’m never going to use half of it.  I mean really how many hand soaps do I need to have on hand?  She gave me some good goals to work for (which I’ve not really followed through on) and I still really want to cut back on the amount of stuff that I have.
  7. Everything is Figureoutable: How One Simple Belief Can Help Us Overcome Any Obstacle and Create Unstoppable Success by Marie Forelo.  This book was absolutely amazing.  Marie grew up with a mother who taught her that everything in life is figureoutable, and it’s so true.  We live in an age where all the information we could ever want is at our fingertips.  You just have to search for the answer.  She also has the belief that when you find yourself struggling to make a decision on something you should ask yourself will this matter in 10 years.  Will you regret not doing it in 10 years.  If the answer is yes then you will be able to figure out how to make it happen.  It’s truly powerful
  8. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard.  This book is set in a fictional time where society has been changed into two different classes, Reds (with red blood and inferior) and Silvers (with silver blood and abilities).  The silvers rule the reds, and use them as human shields in their wars.  To silvers reds are expendable.  Our heroin Mare Barrow finds herself being thrust into the world of silvers when she finds out she has abilities of her own that are far more powerful than the powers of silvers.  She is a new blood.  This book is the first in this series that is filled with love, loss, war and becoming the face of a resistance.
  9. From Poop to Gold:  The Marketing Magic of Harmon Brothers by Chris Jones.  Ok I was intrigued because of the Squatty Potty Commercial with the unicorn.  The commercial really makes me laugh, and I was hoping that this book would really give me some insight onto why it was so silly.  Well, it did to some extent.  I listened to this book on Audible and it was one that needed to be actually read due to the fact that Chris refers back to graphics and that are needed for context.  It was a quick read but not one that you need to run out and buy.
  10. The Princess Bride by William Goldman.  I love the movie, and have been trying to read this book for years.  I finally sat down and started reading it 8 pages at a time.  It made it so much easier to handle, and I will say I enjoyed this book.  There are differences from the movie, but those differences did help me understand the movie better.  And how can you not root for true love.
  11. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Conterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson.  Be warned if you don’t like curse words this book is not for you as they are littered throughout. We spend so much time trying to be positive all the time and Mark helps you cut through that thinking to help us be happier, healthier humans.
  12. The Millionaire Real Estate Agent by Gary Keller.  This book was recommended when I worked for another brokerage.  I felt that it was an important read for me even though I am not with that brokerage anymore.  It was good, I gleaned a few nuggets and am glad I read it.
  13. The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris.  I love history and this book gives you a very unique perspective on the concentration camps of World War II.  It follows the life of Lale Sokolov at Auschwitz-Birkenau and how he falls in love, and how they both survive.  It’s an amazingly inspiring story, and a must read.
  14. French Aromatherapy: Essential Oil Recipes & Usage Guide by Jen O’Sullivan.  Another book that I’ve been trying to read, for forever.  It was great for learning about essential oils.
  15. Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard.  This is the second book in this series and we follow Mare Barrow as she becomes an integral part of the resistance in beating the Silvers and changing their world.  She begins a journey to search for more new bloods to train them, and help in the fight to create a new life for all reds.
  16. King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard.  Mare finds herself prisoner of the new silver king, Maven who is obsessed with her.  The Red Dawn (the resistance) frees her from captivity, and we see how they work to attempt to overthrow Maven.  An amazing addition to the series.
  17. The Little Book of Hygge: The Danish Way to Live Well by Meik Wiking.  I have been curious as to why the Danish always seem to be so happy, and learn more about what hygge is.  I listened to this book on Audible and it was a quick listen, and really interesting.  I wish I had a hard copy of this book because it had some recipes that would be fun to try.

I know have a whole lot of books left to go, but I’m enjoying the challenge of trying to read 52 books this year (a book a week).  I hope you find something that you want to read, and I would love it if you would comment with some of the books you think I should read.

Books, Books and more Books

April 6 postI absolutely love to read, and am so thankful that my Mom modeled reading for pleasure when I was a child.  At any given time I can be reading at least four books – one through Audible, on in the Kindle app on my phone for the time I used to be able to go out to eat by myself and would read, then a self-help book and a fun book.  Those last two books are either a hardbound copy or paperback.   There is something about holding a book in my hands when I read that I just love.

As we get further into the stay at home order I find myself reading more, and since I like having a hard copy of a book I thought, hmmm, how am I going to get books, besides ordering from Amazon.  Which we all know is slow right now, and yes I could go to the library, except they are closed too.

So imagine my surprise when I learned that my local Barnes and Noble was doing curbside pick up when you order online.  My little book nerd heart was so happy when I heard this.  Now, browsing online does not compare to being able to go to the store and roam the aisle looking at all the different books, but it’s better than nothing.

If you are a book nerd like me, I would encourage you to do a little bit of searching on the internet to see what bookstores around you are doing curbside pick up – that’s if you are allowed to go out as each state’s stay at home orders are different.

Hillsboro’s Tiny Libraries A Part of the Little Free Library Movement

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The little library movement is sweeping the nation and has hit Hillsboro.  You may have noticed several new tiny libraries have popped up around the city, and wonder what it is all about.

It is really quite easy to borrow a book from the tiny library.  Hillsboro Library spokesperson, Mary Loftin says that the rules for these tiny libraries are simple.  If you see a book you like you take it home, and read it.  Then when you are done simply drop the book off at any of the tiny libraries across the city for others to enjoy.  The library realizes that not everyone can get to a branch location so this is their way of reaching more people in our community.

One might wonder if the library is concerned about books not being returned.  One of the unique features of a tiny library is that they are not staffed, and books are taken on the honor system.  You are welcome to enjoy them as long as you like, plus since the books at a tiny library are not like standard library books they do not have to be returned.

It should also be noted that these tiny libraries are not checked by librarians, so if you happen to have an overdue library book they ask that you DO NOT return it to a tiny library.  Overdue library books still need to be returned to an actual library branch.

The books you will find at the tiny library are provided by the Friends of the Hillsboro Public Library which is a a non-profit.  With their help the Hillsboro Library can continue to think outside of the box to provide access to library books for those who are unable to make it to a branch location.

Tiny Library Locations include:  Bagley Park, Evergreen Park, Frances Street Park, McKinney Park, Orenco Woods Nature Park, Tuner Creek Park and Walnut Street Park

*information courtesy of Pamplin Media Group