A Holiday Week With Family In Spokane

It was short, but it was so sweet. Last night, my little family arrived back to South Carolina after a special holiday visit to Spokane. It was the best way possible to conclude 2017.

You can’t beat being around family during the holidays. We just got back from a great trip spent with mine.

We departed in the afternoon on Christmas Day. By the time our plane touched down in Spokane, it was the very early morning of December 26. Nonetheless, my parents were at the airport with big smiles (and a happy tear or two) to greet us. A memorable trip was underway!

Sloan and I watching a movie on the plane.

After my mom had her chance to hold Sloan and give her plenty of kisses, we all went to bed for a few hours. Perhaps not well-rested, but more than awake because we were fueled by happiness and adrenaline, we enjoyed a great first day.

My mom holding Sloan in the wee hours of the morning of our arrival.

My brother arrived at the house first that Tuesday morning. Shortly thereafter, my sister pulled up in my parents’ driveway with her daughter and baby son in tow. A big draw of the trip was to see Johnny again. We were in Spokane when he was born in July but had not seen him for six months. It was so nice to hold Johnny and to watch him play with Sloan.

Johnny and Sloan spent a lot of time together.

That first day we celebrated our family Christmas. We played games, took photos with our custom Snapchat geofilter, admired the snow, and watched over the babies and toddlers. When my brother-in-law showed up we ate our prime rib dinner, opened gifts, and looked for the pickle.

My parents with Sloan, Johnny, and Mikayla on Christmas day.

The next day, Wednesday, December 27, I woke up early to work out with my dad at a gym I have grown very fond of over the years. I returned and shoveled the driveway as Spokane had received even more snow over the night. During this all, my mom joyfully took care of Sloan, savoring every moment. After I returned to Myrtle Beach my mom told me, “I sure loved my mornings with Sloan.”

On Wednesday morning, I shoveled our driveway.

My sister and her kids soon came over. Miranda and Sidney went to Target and Glen and I went to Costco. Later that evening, Glen, Sid, and I went to the historic Davenport Hotel in Downtown Spokane where we had drinks at a place called the Safari Room with my brother’s friend, Courtney. The atmosphere and conversation were both lovely. We came home and ate with my parents (and Sloan) as we heated up the leftovers from our Christmas dinner and made sandwiches. Later that night, Glen, Sid, and I went to a neighborhood bar where we caught up with old friends.

Enjoying ourselves at the Safari Room at the Davenport Hotel with Glen and Courtney.

On Thursday, our entire crew, strollers and all, went shopping at the mall. From there we ate lunch at a place called Fatburger, a joint that Sidney had wanted to try since we visited last Christmas season. When we arrived home, Sid and I took Sloan out in the snow for the first time. We took her on a sleigh ride and even though she certainly didn’t love it, we were able to make some cool memories. We came inside and we all played a Jeopardy board game (congrats on winning, Glen). Then, we all invaded the basement to watch the Holiday Bowl between Washington State and Michigan State. The outcome was far from what we wanted but the appetizers we made for the game sure were good. We concluded the evening by watching a movie.

Sloan experienced snow for the first time.

Friday rolled around and my dad and I got in another gym session. When we arrived home, Sid and mom were having a great time playing with Sloan. My mom cooked up a big breakfast for us all which was delicious. Later in the day, my mom gladly watched over the babies as my dad, Miranda, Sid, Glen, and I went to Birdy’s, another neighborhood sports bar near our house. We had the best time. We told stories, we laughed, and we enjoyed each other’s company. It was one of the highlights of the trip. We returned home and then our entire group went out to Tomato Street, a restaurant with some of the best Italian food you will ever enjoy. We had a very nice time. Upon returning home, we watched another movie to finish off the night.

Our crew at Birdy’s in Spokane.

Saturday was our last day in Spokane and we made the most of it. The morning was spent sitting in the living room as Sid, my mom, my dad, and I chatted while watching Sloan play. Sid and I made our traditional visit to a local haunt called Selkirk and we roamed the aisles of Fred Meyer. When we returned home, Miranda and her family had arrived. I was able to play with Mikalya and hold Johnny one final time. We then went off to vigil mass at St. Thomas More, one of the moments I always look forward to when returning to Spokane. After the service ended we drove by a house in the area that is decorated in a holiday Disney theme each year. When we got back to the house, my parents prepared a steak dinner. It was fantastic as it was my favorite meal of the trip. We then watched another movie and savored the remaining time we had together.

Sidney at Selkirk this past Saturday.

We left my parents’ house at 3 a.m. on Sunday morning. They took us to the airport and we said our tearful goodbyes.

I had an amazing time in Spokane with my family during the holidays.

It was a special time in Spokane. We all stuck very close and enjoyed each other. It was nice to watch Sloan interact with her fellow baby cousin. Just as we were impressed with little Johnny, I know my parents, brother, and sister were impressed with Sloan. We were treated so incredibly well by my parents. We were also touched by how much time and love my brother and sister gave us. It was tough to leave my hometown and the people I love but we brought so many memories home with us. To my family – thank you and we love you. Don’t Blink.

Our Holiday Week in Spokane

As I sit on my couch here in Myrtle Beach, I find myself reflecting on our recent holiday trip to Spokane. We returned to South Carolina late last night after another memorable visit with my family. This time around, we didn’t have a lot of time out west. However, we made the absolute best out of the five days we did have to spend with our west coast loved ones.

I felt that perhaps the best way to organize this particular post would be to just briefly convey the best part about each of those special five days we spent in my hometown. So, here goes nothing…

Tuesday, Dec. 27 – My three aunts from Walla Walla drove through the snowy roads to see Sidney and I. My cousin, Abby, and her boyfriend also came. They all “oohed and aahed” over Sidney’s belly and threw the two of us a baby shower. We also played the popular game Speak Up and watched the Holiday Bowl. My Aunt Nancy and Abby came to Myrtle Beach for the wedding but I had not seen Aunt Debbie or Aunt Judy for over a year and a half.

Sidney and I with (from left to right) my Aunt Debbie, Aunt Nancy, and Aunt Judy.

Sidney and I with (from left to right) my Aunt Debbie, Aunt Nancy, and Aunt Judy.

Wednesday, Dec. 28 – We celebrated our Reser Family Christmas on this day! My parents, my sister’s family, my brother and his girlfriend, and of course Sidney and I turned up the holiday spirit for most of the day. We started by playing games. We then enjoyed a delicious prime rib meal. We then opened up gifts. After the presents, my mom banished all of us to the basement so she could hide the pickle in the tree. For the second year in a row, my sister found it. We then ate the dessert. Although a few days after December 25, you never would have been able to tell that we were celebrating Christmas late.

All of us "kids" playing Phase 10 on Wednesday, the day we celebrated our Reser Family Christmas.

All of us “kids” playing Phase 10 on Wednesday, the day we celebrated our Reser Family Christmas.

Thursday, Dec. 29 – This was the day I got to hang with my siblings the most. Sidney and I went with my brother and sister to the mall where we looked all around and used some of our Christmas money. The four of us then went to my dad’s work and surprised him! He took us around his whole office introducing us to everyone. We then headed to Selkirk, the restaurant/bar that Sidney and I always make sure to frequent while in Spokane. We enjoyed appetizers and drinks while laughing about my dad’s lame jokes.

We visited my dad at work (above). While at the mall, I posed for a photo with my brother and sister (bottom left). Sidney and I shared our favorite item to eat while in Spokane...snow capped fries from Selkirk (bottom right).

We visited my dad at work (above). While at the mall, I posed for a photo with my brother and sister (bottom left). Sidney and I shared our favorite item to eat while in Spokane…snow capped fries from Selkirk (bottom right).

Friday, Dec. 30 – Whenever all of us are together, my mom always likes to take us out for a nice meal. However, instead of going out to dinner, we decided it would be a nice change to go out to breakfast. We went to Old European, a Spokane breakfast institution. Although it took a long time for a party of our size to get seated, the wait was worth it. We chowed down on the delicious food and left absolutely stuffed.

We played games on Friday too! A few photos from the fun day.

We played games on Friday too! A few photos from the fun day.

Saturday, Dec. 31 – We marked our last day in Spokane pretty much how we spent the previous four: with family. We went with my parents to mass at the church I grew up in, St. Thomas More, and then we returned home to spend the New Year’s Eve with the exact same group we celebrated our Reser Family Christmas with. We ate pizza, macaroni and cheese, sandwiches, and Sidney’s homemade queso sausage dip while enjoying each other’s company. I made sure to savor every single moment as I knew that in just a few short hours we would be heading back to the airport.

The three of us Reser kids with our significant others on Saturday night.

The three of us Reser kids with our significant others on Saturday night.

I kept myself honest in this post. I made sure to list just one main highlight per day. But of course there was so much more that went into our trip out west. I went to bars with my brother and dad, stayed up late talking to my mom, and spent every minute possible playing with my niece. Sidney continued to bond with my sister, allowed my mom to touch her belly all she wanted, and enjoyed winning money at the casino. 

Of course, we can’t thank my parents enough. They showed us tremendous hospitality, love, and generosity. They did all they could to make our trip special. They picked us up and dropped us off at the airport at late hours when the snow was falling and the roads were awful. Besides just our parents, we thank everyone else for making our Spokane trip amazing. We can’t wait to return. Don’t Blink.