Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas Extended

We had kind of a drawn out Christmas this year.  First, Deborah and I decided to start early. I paid for her sewing lessons for the year and bought her a thread caddy with 100+ rolls of thread; She bought me a La Crosse wireless weather station and a new exhaust system for the truck.  Romantic, huh?  The truck sounds 1000% better and I suspect we'll get better mileage too.  That will be nice when it comes to towing the boat.

Christmas Eve was busy with the girls, most of the grandkids, Brandy and Al with Chloe, and Doug and Linda here.  Fun times.  On Christmas day I had a gift certificate to her favorite spa for her and she had an egg poacher for me. We've used it twice already!  

Yesterday (28th) James, Zach & Krista came over to celebrate a late Christmas with us.   James brought some awesome orange-molasses cookies and Zach & Krista gave me a cool pair of kitchy lamps for the family room.  

Then we headed to Portland to pick up Jessy and Homero from the airport.  They'd been in Mexico visiting his family.  This morning (Sunday) April, Gaby, Jose and Gaby's friend Anna came for waffles then we had Christmas with Jessy. 

All in all a nice Christmas.  Next stop New Year's Day and our 14th anniversary.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sailing friends and snow in the Valley

It's been a while since my last post.  Hasn't exactly been sailing weather around here though, so I guess I can forgive myself. :)

Several years ago Deborah and I decided to get away from the Thanksgiving insanity and head north to Victoria, Canada, for the holiday weekend.  We thought it was time to go north again this year so I emailed Bill and Sue (Capri 22 "Windsong"), who cruised the San Juans with us this summer, and asked if they wanted to meet us in Vancouver.  They asked if we wanted to visit them in Kamloops instead.  So we did!

Kamloops is a long drive so we left on Tuesday afternoon.  Our timing was impeccable and we hit Seattle at rush hour.  We did have a nice view of the ball fields and skyline while we sat in traffic.

We spent the night in a motel in Burlington then drove the rest of the way on Wednesday morning.  Tales of the infamous Coquahalla Highway had me prepared for feet of snow, treacherous driving and semi's sliding everywhere.  Ummm.  Nope.  

Bill & Sue have a beautiful home on a bluff at the south end of Kamloops.  The new Garmin GPS led us right to their house without any hiccups.  We spent 3 relaxing days, eating, visiting, and getting the grand tour of the area.  It's high desert and reminds me of Bend and the Gorge, only with steeper hills.
We checked out Snow Peaks ski area, had turkey with all the trimmings for (our) Thanksgiving (theirs was in October), and spent Black Friday fighting traffic and people to go shopping.  We also got to play a cool Canadian game called Crokinole; Sue and I whipped Bill and Deborah, but who's keeping score?  :)

We headed home on Saturday 10 long hours on the road, after a great visit.  Bill and Sue really are great hosts and wonderful friends.

The last week at home has been really interesting.  The forecasters were projecting an inch or so of snow in the valley.  I woke up about 4:30 AM on Friday and there was about 1/4 inch of snow on the ground.  By the time I got up it was over two inches,

 and by the time I decided to drive in to work for a 9:00 phone call there was 3 inches!  Wow.  Corvallis had even more snow, so after about 90 minutes, with the snow coming down like a blizzard, I grabbed my laptop and drove on home.  

The University closed at noon and didn't open again until today (Tuesday) at 9 AM.  By the time it was done snowing on Friday evening we had 6 inches at our house.

Jessy came over and made a snowman, which wasn't easy with the powder snow.  We managed with a shovel and bucket though.

Saturday we entertained Jessy and Jose, first with a trip to get 3 of us haircuts, then with some sledding in the back yard.

Now, what's all this snow got to do with the boat?  Not much, right?  Well, true, but Deborah did buy me an early Christmas present.  A La Crosse weather station with anemometer, rain gauge and indoor/outdoor temperature/humidity measurements.  Plus an online interface.  Awesome!