Good morning to you all from Ashland, Oregon! – My musings today …..
PEOPLE OFTEN ASK ME –
“Why should we stay at a Bed and Breakfast? We like to be independent and we don’t like to be tied to a breakfast time and we like the option of other food. Also we have to talk to strangers, some of whom we have no desire to meet”!
Well here are my thoughts as I put “pen to paper” and ponder the concerns that people have about Bed and Breakfasts.
Shakespeare and Bed and Breakfast go together like Wine and Cheese here in Ashland, Oregon.
Interestingly they seem to add to the whole experience of most towns. The United States has a history of Bed and Breakfasts dating back to the times when early settlers first came to this country. Pioneers crossing through these vast lands often sought safe refuge in homes, inns or taverns. Today some of those historic accommodations still serve as Bed and Breakfasts. During the depression even more homes were opened up to travelers bringing in much needed money during this time. As more Americans started to travel abroad to different countries, they discovered this amazingly diverse type of accommodation.
Don’t be fooled by Bed and Breakfasts.
Yes, today there are a few that are still run as a “mom and pop” business but times have changed and Bed and Breakfasts are changing with them – in a nice way.
They still retain their quaintness but most have taken their homes to the next level. The business level yet still managing to retain their individuality, their personal, professional care of their guests and their insider knowledge of their towns. The majority of our Bed and Breakfast owners will go out of their way to ensure that you have everything you require at hand and all for that “no added cost” experience. We will ensure your privacy, your safety and respect your personal space. Breakfast time – sure it’s fixed but just imagine – everything is cooked from scratch, healthy, organic and most Bed and Breakfasts will cater to dietary and food allergy requirements. Just mention them to your Innkeeper Chef upon checking in or booking. Just alone the smell of fresh baking wafting through the house along with the aroma of bacon will have you up and about anyway, just itching to get to the table. As for meeting people, well I have yet to see a table of guests that have literally nothing in common. Just being in Ashland, Oregon proves that they all have something in common. Friendships are made and our guests go home happy. What more could you ask for?
Today most Bed and Breakfasts have Bedrooms with Bathrooms en-suite, Wi-Fi, Air Conditioning, Heating, Tea/Coffee Facilities, Cable TV, Snacks and Fresh Baked goods available 24/7. Concierge services, Ticket Specials and so much more at no added costs. Do your homework – read the reviews, more importantly # Book Direct to get their best deals.
#BOOKDIRECT… Why Book Direct?
William Shakespeare, 1564 – 1616. “To be, or not to be: that is the question”.
In todays’ age of OTA’S – On Line Travel Agencies such as Trip Advisor, Booking. Com, Expedia and so many more it seems to just be easier just to deal with them when looking to book accommodation for your vacation. Have you noticed that you will never find a Bed and Breakfast on their main pages? Sure you can find Hotels and Vacation Rentals. So where are we hidden? Deep down in the filter searches if you can find us (if only) or maybe in amongst the hotels that they seem to divert you to when you begin searching. I call it sheer luck if you finally manage to stumble across a Bed and Breakfast.
Amazingly OTA’s seem to offer it all and more! Beware however of the hidden costs, the cancellation policies and the not so gentle nudge in other directions. Please note that you cannot cancel direct with a Bed and Breakfast you have to go back to your OTA to process a cancellation request. Sure – I always use OTA’s when researching my travel plans, accommodations and flights – however once I have done my homework I tend to look for an email address or telephone number to contact them directly. Unfortunately I have also had my fingers burnt – thinking that I am hitting a local number button and making the booking, which I have found upon arrival at my accommodation I have still somehow managed to book inadvertently through an OTA or Google.
I have been caught yet again!
So where is the best place to do your booking? Go directly to the website of the business if you can – google it or look for the web address on the OTA page. The web address is sometimes the only way you will find the number, the correct email address that will enable you to #BookDirect.
Actually this is the only way to enjoy your booking experience with a genuine Innkeeper who will keep you informed and give you the experience that you want.
Some Insider News!
Believe it or not – a chance encounter with an American Diplomat back in Zimbabwe bought Adam and I to Ashland, Oregon in 2012….
Ashland, if ever there was a town that has it all, it has to be Ashland, Oregon. A multi-cultural town where you can be who you want to be and find something to do that you want to do. A “Bucket List” dream! Whether you are single person and looking to mingle, romantic newylweds, adventure driven families or cultural couples – we have it all and more:
- Vacationing Home hunting
- Theatre Cabaret Cinema Art & Glass Galleries
- Wine Food & Restaurant Local Cheese Chocolate
- Boutique Shopping Local Artisan Shopping Farmers Organic Market
- Antique Rummaging
- Hiking Biking Walking Rafting Skiing Fish Golfing
- Crater Lake Emigrant Lake Lake of the Woods Jacksonville Applegate Valley
The choice is yours to make in this small quaint town of twenty two thousand people give or take.
Ashland, Oregon boasts an eclectic home to many from all walks of life – a town of diversity, humor and so much more. This is what makes Ashland different – the people.
Walk through our beautiful Lithia Park, wander the “eye of the needle” as I call the center of Ashland, eat in our local restaurants that are geared towards organic, healthy beautiful meals as well as catering for all dietary, food requirements. Of course we are home to the famous Oregon Shakespeare Festival
which has been in existence for more than eighty years. Don’t be fooled by the term “Shakespeare”. Not only do they showcase some beautiful Shakespeare productions such as Pericles, the King Henry Chronicles and The Odyssey, but also some incredibly interesting, contentious and diverse plays based on the multicultural history of America. Some of these small plays are brimming with emotion – sadness, laughter and humility. I never miss a new play if I can – some of the most memorable of them in the short time I have lived here “Sweat” a story of the locked out Steelworkers Union of Reading, Pennsylvania in 2011, Vietgone that tells of Vietnamese refugees with nowhere to turn to but America – to make a new home for themselves and the struggles that they faced, – I walked out of Vietgone with tears running down my face. Roe vs Wade, Mojada: A Medea in Los Angeles, Unison and so many with powerful messages.
Our wine Valley is growing and it would seem that my predictions of a small “Sonoma” in the making six years ago may be coming to fruition. Weisingers a long time family owned winery is reaping awards in the Wine industry. Some of my favorites include their Grenache and Tempranillo as well as their Viognier. Eliana Wines owned by a fellow Zimbabwean (an interesting tale if ever there was to tell) has also done well in the medal arena with their Tempranillo. Be sure to look out for the release of their new dessert wine. Ashland is surrounded by boutique wineries that still offer that personal tasting experience such as Dana Campbell, Simple Machine , Pebblestone Winery, Aurora , Belle Fiore (a magnificent Chateau and Wedding Destination) and my “in town” favorite – Platt Anderson Cellars. This small wine shop with the big heart is perfectly situated in an Art Gallery. Who wouldn’t want to wander the floors of a beautiful art gallery whilst quaffing on wine.
Eat at Ostras (Spanish tapas) with our wonderful Oliver at the helm. Enjoy his wine suggestions both local and Spanish. Try out the sushi at Sakana along with a bottle of delicious Sake. Dine at the Taj and enjoy the rich spiciness of Indian Food along with an Ice cold Indian beer. Have a burger at the Standing Stone with a beer sampling platter and of course eat Vietnamese/Asian at – a small hole in the wall restaurant. No matter what you like to eat, how you like to eat and how much you wish to spend – it is all here to be found in this incredibly interesting, but quaint town of Ashland, Oregon.
Adam and I have now owned Abigail’s Bed and Breakfast Inn for five years and we have loved and watched this town grow from strength to strength – it really is worth a visiting Vacation. Come and stay with us – we may be small on the Inn front but we pack a lot into our package! Bed and Breakfast with all of the hotel amenities and no hidden costs. We shall look forward to hosting you this coming season….
GLUTEN –FREE ALMOND COOKIES … a chewy, goey delight! Don’t be put off by Gluten-Free these are delicious regardless..
- 4 cups of almond flour (I tend to us the Costco Almond Flour)
- 4 ½ cups of fine sugar
- 7 Eggs
- Almond Essence to taste
- Pinch of salt
- Zest of a lemon
Place the eggs, the sugar, salt, almond essence and zest of lemon together in a mixing bowl or blender. Whisk on a high speed together till it reaches a thick creamy ribbon stage.
Take the almond flour and put into a bowl. Slowly add the rich creamy egg/sugar mixture to the almond flour and stir thoroughly bringing it altogether.
Take a ice cream scoop and begin by scooping onto a baking tray line with baking paper.
You can either freeze these and bake at a later date or if you choose to bake now – pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Bake these for approximately 15 minutes until lightly brown. Be careful not to overbake as with such a high sugar content they can burn quite quickly.
Before I bake them I tend to press them down slightly and top with a smoked almond and/or a glace cherry.
The cookies with be soft to touch but will firm slightly when cool. They should be soft and chewy on the inside.