We checked into a sub-standard hotel (to my standards, anyway). The carpets were old, the couches were torn, and the mattresses were bony. After 24 hours, the toilet clogged, overflowed and gushed everywhere. I ran upstairs and turned off the water, then called the front desk to get some assistance. They moved us to a new room...which looked remarkably like the old room, including old carpet, old couches, and old mattresses. The nice thing was that in the mornings they had hot breakfasts (until 9 a.m., anyway) and in the evenings, they had simple dinner fare...burgers & dogs one night, and chicken fried steak the next. FREE. The burgers were really good.
On Wednesday, we headed over to visit with Heide & family at their new place. They don't have cable, but they have "Animal Planet" out their back door...and as A3 put it so cleverly, "All we get is the Squirrel Show." Heide provided incentive and the creatures came for our entertainment. A2 has named several of them and can tell them apart. I suppose it's her keen artistic eye that can discern subtle details between each of them.
A1 wanted to do a little shopping for a jacket, so we decided to make a quick trip to Portland to check on a few of their offerings. Our 90-minute quick trip to a clothing store turned into a 6-hour EPIC Journey through horrible Portland traffic. We were stuck in the city at every turn. We even did a figure 8 trying to get onto a bridge to cross the river downtown. I hoped that I would get a chance to go to Fabric Depot or a yarn store...but no such luck. I did, however, find one offering that I found amusing on the shelves, but could never imagine ever wearing...or anyone else wearing. At least not in public. I had to get a photo to show to my bro who loves bunnies. He agreed...he wouldn't wear it, either. Nor would his wife. I wouldn't be able to drop the $40 they were asking for it, anyway...and that was the sale price. Maybe if I found it at a second-hand store or something...Maybe.
Thursday we headed over to Mike & Laura's at 11 pm. Got lots of photos of the kids...
Mr. Mal loves his jumpy seat. He had mastered the control of it, bouncing and turning in circles, then lifting his feet to unwind. Brilliant kid for 10 months!
Friday Kelly headed down to Portland (while we slept in) and did a little Black Friday shopping. I didn't even know he was gone until about 20 minutes after I got up. We packed up all our gear and traveled North to visit with the Grands on the Peninsula. We made a couple of quick detours to grab some Cache-to-Eagle geocaches. The first was in Bremerton at the Boy Scout office up in the hills in the Soroptimist Park. We found it pretty quickly and picked up a couple of Travel Bugs there. From there, we headed up to another one at the Kitsap Memorial State Park in Poulsbo to grab one more C-to-E cache. This one didn't have one of the points of Scouting in it...each one is supposed to be labeled "A Scout is... [honest, friendly, trustworthy, faithful, courteous, etc.]" I figure what we'll have to do is find all the rest and use the process of elimination to determine what it is. We have gotten 9 of the 12 so far...only have to get two in Seattle and one in Sequim...no idea when we'll get a chance to drive all the way out to Sequim. It'll take at least 2 to 3 hours EACH WAY. I dunno...
Saturday we returned to the Grands' and visited with Kelly's brother, his wife and son. The kids had a fantastic time...there was much joy emanating from the loft. Football games played the whole time. I wasn't really paying attention to any of them, but I did see the surprise ending to the Aurora-Alabama game...fantastic finish!
Saturday morning, rather than watch football, I managed to make my escape...temporary escape. I spent a couple hours out seeking Geocaches. I found one in the morning when Kelly and I walked over to Starbucks for some tea, but I found seven more around town (and one that was missing, so I couldn't count that one; I found the fishing line that it had been attached to, but the rest of the cache was gone).
We stayed for dinner then headed back home. It was a long week, but it was a lot of fun...except the traffic part. We made our way back across the water and got home shortly after 9. It was an epic five days, and I'm really glad that we have a day to recover before we start back into the daily grind. Laundry, straightening up, and maybe some Christmas decorating are in order!