Splash Pads in Spokane

I discovered the best summer hack ever: splash pads.

Sloan has discovered splash pads and she loves them!

Our state is in a serious and unprecedented heat wave with numerous consecutive days of 100+ degree days. It is pretty day. Now while I realize the best course of action for many is to just stay inside, a certain 4-year-old girl has other ideas. Sloan needs to be outside and doing things.

Oh yeah, Sloan isn’t the only one who enjoys splash pads…Beau does too.

So, we have been making the rounds at various parks in the Spokane and Spokane Valley areas. As I have mentioned before, the parks in this area are beautiful, green, and spacious. They have creative playground equipment, hiking trails, designated picnic areas, plenty of shade, and more. They almost all have splash pads too.

Can you spot Sloan? She is playing on this splash pad at Mission Park in Spokane.

For parents, the splash pad is a perfect attraction because kids can cool off without getting too wet to do anything but swim. Splash pads are usually situated right next to the playground so Sloan can go back and forth between each one. On these days that are scorchers, Sloan can run through the splash pad and then hit the play equipment that would otherwise be too hot to play on if not for cold water protecting her body. She can then spend time swinging on the monkey bars and going down the slides until she needs to cool off again on the splash pad.

After getting wet at the splash pad at Edgecliff Park, Sloan will then run over to the playground equipment.

The splash pads are terrific social centers. From what I have observed, they bring kids together as they laugh and splash as water shoots up and pours down. A camaraderie develops around the shared experience of getting drenched with cool water. Sloan has met several other kids on the pads and their newfound friendship expands to the playground as well. It is like magic.

Beau scoping out the splash pad at Greenacres Park in Spokane Valley all while keeping an eye on his sister.

Splash pads help parents fend off heat strokes too. It is a way for us to stay cool during these sizzling days. Although I don’t run through the pad myself, I do put my hands in the water and cool down my neck or arms. Also, the mist that develops and finds its way to the adults standing on the perimeter of the pads is very much appreciated.

The splash pad at Riverfront Park is pretty spectacular.

From what I have seen so far, all splash pads are different in Spokane, making it even more fun. Layouts, fountains, geysers, and funnels are all unique at each park, making for a special experience at each one. Variety is the spice of life, right?

Sloan and her cousins love hitting up the area splash pads. This is at Edgecliff Park in Spokane Valley.

Perhaps I am just on such a splash pad high because we were taunted by them last summer. Sloan and I would visit all these Spokane parks and see the elaborate but roped-off pads. Damn you, COVID. You sure know how to break a little girl’s heart.

Beau doesn’t mind getting wet.

So maybe we are making up for lost time. Or maybe it is just really hot out. Or both? Yeah, both. Thank you to our area parks for installing splash pads, they sure are fun! Don’t Blink.

Hey Southern Belle, What Have You Learned After a Year?

As I mentioned in Sid’s Mother’s Day post, she has now lived in Spokane for a year. Throughout the past 365 days she has definitely learned a thing or two about the culture and quirks of the Lilac City. For tonight’s blog post, let’s review 10 of the more prominent lessons taken in by Sid since May 2020.

After a year in Spokane, Sid has learned a thing or two.

1. Coffee stands are on every corner and no aroma is more prominent on the city streets than that of fresh brew.

2. Except of course for the pungent smell of marijuana that similarly can be smelled on every corner thanks to the surplus of dispensaries.

3. From smell to taste, Sid quickly learned that for what this city lacks in fast food chicken (think Bojangles, Zaxby’s, Popeye’s, etc) it makes up for it in fast food Mexican (Say hello to Taco John’s, Taco Time, and Senor Froggy).

4. Want a drink with that burrito? No matter how often my parents have said the word, a year is way too short of a time for Sid to ever think about referring to soda as “pop.”

5. Whatever you call your soft drink, at least it has a chance to stay cold for longer than a minute when you are outside in July. When Sid asked me why we weren’t sweating in the morning one summer day I remarked simply: Fresh air.

6. The climate isn’t the only thing that is at different ends of the spectrum in South Carolina and Washington. Political ideologies are at two different extremes as well. From the red to the blue for Sid!

7. Speaking of politicians, some might compare them to snakes and roaches. Thankfully Sid was able to escape the creepy crawlers (talking about the actual creatures) and now just has to worry about black widows and June bugs.

8. One thing Sidney doesn’t have to worry about is her accent. It is adored and celebrated by the locals who enjoy a Southern dialect in a town that is dominated by accent-neutral speaking folks.

9. Although her accent is celebrated some of her South Carolina idioms aren’t—or should I say they are just misunderstood? People here don’t understand what constitutes “being ugly” beyond bad looks and if you say “going to cut the grass” people will think you are getting your personal scissors out to do some precise trimming.

10. Sid is thankful she didn’t push harder for a riding lawn mower because gas prices to fill it are much more expensive in Washington (roughly $3.20 per gallon right now) than the cheaper prices in South Carolina. It’s okay though, moving to a state with no state income tax was a welcome treat!

Two great places, two vastly different ways of doing things. We love them both. Don’t Blink.

Power Outage Thursday Rundown

Hey, we are exactly one month away from Valentine’s Day! Oh, give me a break. It is all about my wife’s birthday in two weeks. Holidays and birthdays aside, let’s get started with my latest Thursday Rundown…

Breezy – Early yesterday morning I was in the shower when the bathroom went dark. Sloan, turn that light back on, I hollered. But she was still in her bed. Super strong gusts of wind had wiped out our power. Using our iPhone flashlights we maneuvered around the house for about an hour as we got ready and packed up necessities for the day. We then dodged fallen trees in the road as we made the 30-minute drive to my parents’ house. The four of us camped out there for the day as I used their in-tact electricity to work. The Spokane International Airport recorded a wind gust that topped 70 MPH, the second highest mark in the area’s history. Thankfully by the end of the day we returned home as the winds had died down and our power was back on.

Sloan using a flash light when the power went out in our house yesterday morning.

Hungry, Hungry Hippos – Sloan received a true classic for Christmas. One of the first presents she opened was Hungry, Hungry Hippos. Although she didn’t really know what it was at first, we played it that night and she quickly became obsessed. Sure, she has found ways to cheat but for the most part it is good, clean fun. The rounds we play get pretty intense and one evening after Sloan went to sleep, Sidney and I stayed up for some 1-on-1 matches.

Sloan preparing to play a game of Hungry, Hungry Hippos.

Soda Day – Apparently I like writing about soda on January 14. Way back in 2015, I explained why “mini sodas are the real MVP.” I reasoned that 7.5 oz soda cans help to reduce my guilt and that I would gladly pay the higher price per ounce for a serving that is smaller. I was pretty passionate. A few years later on January 14, 2018, I analyzed the rollout of the Diet Coke fruit-flavored sodas. In my opinion it was a much better play by the Coca-Cola company than its decision to rename Coke Zero. That really was a head-scratcher to me. Although I didn’t write it on January 14, if this section on soft drinks has you really interested, you can learn about my favorite sodas here.

Purchasing these smaller sodas saves me some guilt.

Easy Experiment – After being inspired by a Ryan’s World video, we did a science experiment on Saturday morning. We took a Ziploc freezer bag, filled it with water, and added some drops of food coloring. We then grabbed our freshly sharpened pencils and poked them through one side of the bag to the other. Once we pushed about five pencils through the bag we removed them and watched as perfect little spouts of water shot out from the bag until it was empty. Simple and fun to do!

Sidney and Sloan in the process of pushing pencils through the Ziploc bag.

This Week’s Meme – I once again grab a meme from the Instagram Story of my friend Lindsi to close out another Thursday Rundown. This perfectly describes the mood when Sidney and I use Google to settle our debates. When I am on the right side (which isn’t often) it sure is a sweet feeling.

Sidney and I let Google settle a lot of things in our marriage.

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I appreciate your time tonight. Remember that there is never a bad time to perform a random act of kindness. Have a nice Martin Luther King Jr. weekend and I will touch base next week. Don’t Blink.

Is This Normal?

How crazy is 2020? Well, we made a snowman and carved a pumpkin during the same weekend. Of course cutting out a jack-o-lantern is pretty typical for the fourth weekend of October but creating a Frosty is not—even in Spokane.

That was what I was trying to explain to Sidney when the snow started falling on Friday. Seriously, this does not usually happen. But our reality was a winter wonderland that surpassed the 3-6 inches that was forecast.

But don’t think we complained. Sidney got some experience driving in it, hot chocolate was made, and Sloan played in it non-stop. Perhaps our Southern belle does have some Washington blood in her.

Sid and Sloan out in the snow.

The fun started on Friday when Sid took Sloan outside with the snow still falling at a rapid clip. They wasted no time making a snow woman and decking her out in Myrtle Beach-inspired attire. Sloan couldn’t wait to take me out to the front yard to show me “Mommy” (No, not my wife. That is what Sloan named her snow person).

The snow woman that Sid and Sloan built. Sloan named it “Mommy.”

Saturday was a beautiful day. The sun shined brightly and bounced off the white snow as the snow-capped pine trees towered over us. It was my turn to play in the snow with Sloan!

Saturday was gorgeous.

We first did something that I did as a child. I filled a couple spray bottles with water and added food coloring to them. We then went out and squirted the snow as the vibrant blue and red immediately stood out.

Sloan squirted ‘Mommy” with some colored water.

Of course Sloan had to make a snow angel. While she was spreading her wings, she kept repeating “I love the snow! I love the snow!”

Sloan making a snow angel.

She then climbed the mini snow mountain…

Sloan scaling the snow mountain.

And explored the wilderness…

Sloan exploring her surroundings.

At the end of our adventure, she took time to snap a selfie with her daddy.

Snapping a selfie with her old man.

The snow has lingered through the start of this week but the temperatures will be returning to the 50s and the white stuff will soon be a memory…for a week at least. I do believe that years from now we will reflect on our first fall in Spokane and remember the snow storm that dropped several inches in October. Don’t Blink.

Connecting With History at the Davenport Hotel

It has always been a goal of mine to stay at the Davenport Hotel. For those not familiar, the Davenport is Spokane’s most famous and oldest hotel. Built in 1914, it was the place to stay in the city for several decades. If celebrities, sports stars, or sitting U.S. Presidents came to Spokane, there was only one place they would stay.

But as the years passed, the Davenport showed its age and fell into disrepair. In 1985, the hotel shut its doors. If not for asbestos in the guest rooms, the place would have been imploded. In 2000, an entrepreneurial married couple bought the property and renovated the guest rooms and brought the lobby and ballrooms back to their original glory.

For my birthday this year, I wanted to do something memorable. With us now living in Spokane and my parents chomping at the bit to host Sloan and Beau for another sleepover, I asked Sid if she wanted to stay at the Davenport. Wanting to help me cross off an item on my Spokane bucket list, or perhaps just wanting to spend the night in a luxurious hotel, she said yes.

Sidney at the Davenport Hotel on Saturday night.

On Saturday night, we checked into room 706. The check-in process was pleasant with the staff bending over backward to make us feel welcome. With the plan to check out the Peacock Room (one of the hotel lounges) and then eat at a downtown restaurant, we almost scrapped those plans after Sid tested out the world-famous Davenport mattress in our hotel room. But as easy as it would have been to sleep the night away, we did decide to venture out.

Our view of the Spokane streets from our seventh floor Davenport Hotel room.

We enjoyed our evening and returned to the Davenport shortly before 10 p.m. Before heading to our room for a night of uninterrupted sleep, we decided to walk around the hotel’s mezzanine. We gazed out at the elegant lobby below us and then started strolling. The mezzanine at the Davenport is an homage to its history. Large, framed photos of elaborate parties and socials from a century ago line the halls. Memorabilia cases also provide a glimpse into the hotel’s heyday.

A look at the Davenport Hotel from the mezzanine.

The mezzanine also provided us access to a couple of ballrooms rich in history and architecture. The Marie Antoinette Ballroom and the Hall of the Doges made us feel some type of way when we walked inside them, especially the former. It smelled old—but not a musty smell. Rather, it was a distinguished old smell that seemed to really convey the colorful parties and the important banquets that took place in the space over the decades.

A photo I snapped of the Davenport Hotel’s Marie Antoinette Ballroom.

Multiple times we talked about the people in the group photos that lined the walls. Many of the images were taken from the mezzanine of a packed lobby. Individuals in their primes with nice clothes and distinguished looks were captured in these photographs. One image from the 1910s showed all children packed in the lobby and around the mezzanine. We couldn’t help but think that these cute children were all now gone from this earthly world. It was kind of a weird feeling.

The famous Hall of the Doges at the Davenport Hotel.

Riding the elevator up to our room, I reflected on the rich history of the hotel and thought of the thousands and thousands of guests who stayed in the property before us. I slept well knowing that we were now connected to them in a small way. Don’t Blink.

Turquoise Thursday Rundown

Happy belated birthday to my brother. Glen turned 31 years old yesterday and I hope he enjoys his “Baskin-Robbins” year. In honor of his constant suggestion that I keep all my blog posts as brief as possible, I will try to breeze through this Thursday Rundown…

Sunset – There is nothing better than a Spokane sunset…well, actually there is…but I digress. I chased the sun on the interstate this past Saturday on my way home. Although I never caught up to it, I did snap this photo.

This was a pretty cool sight.

Golf Adventure – I played for the first time at a Liberty Lake golf course over the weekend. My dad, brother, his fiancée, and myself hit the links at MeadowWood Golf Course, a site located 18 miles east of Spokane. I found it to be a rather difficult course with a ridiculously long 16th hole par 5 but it made for a fun afternoon. My dad bested Glen by one stroke to win. Don’t ask about my score.

Posing for a photo during our round of golf at MeadowWood Golf Course.

TikTok Creativity – People like me who spend too much time on TikTok can rejoice. Facing a ban in the United States, a last-minute deal was made to save the insanely popular app. Speaking of TikTok, I love the creativity coming out of our account at Washington State University (@WSUPullman). One of our social media interns, Chloe, is creating content that even has our biggest trolls recognizing its creativity. Her recent hit was a play on the #GhostPhotoShoot trend. Check it out.

The ghost in this photo shoot is a stuffed Butch.

Jeopardy – The 37th season of Jeopardy looks different. The set has been updated, the contestants are physically distanced, and Ken Jennings has a role. Sadly, Sid and I aren’t the obsessed viewers we once were. Our cross country move, the coronavirus, and lack of cable have all contributed to the decline of our nightly habit of watching Jeopardy. On this date two years ago, I wrote about how Sid and I documented our competitive rivalry by actively keeping a running tally of who performed better during each show. We “kept score” for close to 200 different games. Will we ever return to our intense Jeopardy rivalry? You never know.

A page of our spiral notebook that displays some of our early games.

Punctuation Day – We celebrate National Punctuation Day today so everyone who uses the marks (f!@#$%^) to cover up their bad words can rejoice. Nah, I am actually thinking more about the people who use punctuation for its intended purpose—like me! Whether it be my day job or with this blog, punctuation is extremely important. But let me give a special shoutout to all the copy editors who are punctuation masters and save the butts of so many.

Happy Punctuation Day!

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Usually I remark about how quickly the week goes by but, to be honest, this week seems to be dragging a bit. As you can imagine, I am ready for the weekend. Please pray for an end to the coronavirus. Don’t Blink.

The World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru

Yesterday, I did something for the first time…I went to a fair food drive-thru!

As a way to give a small taste (pun intended) to the thousands of people who missed out on this year’s canceled Spokane County Fair, organizers staged the World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru. This was an event that Sidney really wanted to attend and on the final day of the event that spanned two weekends, we made it happen.

The scene as we approached the start of the line for the World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru.

Upon entering the fairgrounds, we were given a menu that listed everything available. The selection was vast and there was something for everyone. Of course we didn’t really need the menu because we had already memorized it by looking at the online version (nerds).

The Spokane World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru menu.

We were then pointed toward three long lines of cars. We entered one of the queues and waited…and waited. Ladies and gentlemen, this event was a smashing success. I am sure everyone who dutifully attends the fair during normal years showed up plus everyone else who usually doesn’t. I tracked the fair’s Facebook page throughout the weekend and there was consistently a two-hour wait from entering the line to receiving food.

Entering one of the lines of cars.

Luckily for us, this wait was cut in half. Because it was Sunday and because we went during the lunch hour, I think we missed out on the insanely busy hours. Although swamped nonetheless, the event was superbly organized. After waiting in the wasteland of the fairgrounds, we inched up to a checkpoint where a couple workers asked us the vendors we planned to purchase food from. They then put slips of colored paper under our windshield wipers that corresponded to those specific vendors.

More time passed and we eventually turned a corner that brought the World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru in sight. Things seemed to pick up from that point. Before we knew it, we were right in the middle of all the booths!

Approaching the food booths!

Employees from the two places we wanted to order food from, Azars and Uncle Bill’s Homemade King Corn Dogs, came to our window and took our orders…

This Azar’s employee would eventually come to our window.

From Azars, Sid ordered a deep-fried cheesesteak. She gave me a couple bites and it was immediately obvious that it was worth the wait.

Sid with her deep fried cheesesteak from Azar’s.

From Bill’s Homemade King Corn Dogs, I ordered a corn dog, naturally. We also got a “Brick O’ Curley Fries” to split and chicken nuggets for Sloan. The corn dog was fantastic, the fries good, and the nuggets tasted like they were from the frozen section of a supermarket. But since we went 3 for 4 on our choices I wasn’t too disappointed.

Fair food!!

The World’s Largest Fair Food Drive-Thru was a nice Sunday activity. The food was good and both our kids were patient in the car. Even in future years when the fair is in-person again, I think they could bring the drive-thru back a couple months after the event and capitalize on extra revenue. The endless stream of cars proved that this concept is a hit. With that said, now I just need a couple weeks to burn all these calories off. Don’t Blink.

SMOKE-an

This past weekend was a little hazy. No, it wasn’t because I hit the beer cooler too hard—heck, I am on a dental medication that won’t even let me take a sip of alcohol—but because of actual smoke that turned the Spokane air into a hazardous mess.

During this time of the year, South Carolina has hurricanes and Washington has wildfires. Although the former posed a more serious threat to my family than the latter, that’s not to say the byproduct of devastating fires is anything to brush off.

This month I have watched the local news solemnly as wildfires rage all over our state. These infernos have literally destroyed communities and burned hundreds of thousands of acres. There is no such thing as a break in 2020.

On Saturday, the Spokane Valley was reminded of the catastrophic flames in other parts of the state by hazy smoke that ushered itself in prior to breakfast. As the sun rose, I stood out on my back deck to this…

This is what it looked like outside from my back deck on Saturday.

What was supposed to be a 90-degree day never even topped 80. The sun remained a weird pinkish orb. Walk outside and the strong smell of smoke automatically overwhelmed you. Walk back in and you smelled like a campfire. Forget the bright September day, it was dark and eerie.

A look at the smoke as we drove down Sprague. Notice the sun in the top left hand corner of the image.

But for all the oddities that came with the smoke settling in the valley that is Spokane, the threat it posed was definitely most concerning. When the air category is at a “good” level, it hovers under a value of 50 on a scale of 500. On Friday, when the smoke started to settle in our area, it reached a mark of 170. By Saturday and through Sunday, it reached a staggering 499! That isn’t just unhealthy, it is HAZARDOUS.

The conditions climbed to 499!

The smokey conditions didn’t improve much today. I am still not comfortable letting my daughter go outside to play. Unfortunately, the wildfires still rage. Although Spokane will soon be spared the smoke, other towns will still be engulfed by the flames. We need to pray for favorable weather conditions, smart decisions by citizens, and the safety of fire fighters. Don’t Blink.

Have a Picnic

This summer we have made it a point to pack a picnic and go to a park. Why? Well, for one, it is a very enjoyable thing to do. And, two, we simply never had the opportunity to do so in South Carolina. The humid weather simply isn’t conducive to eating outside and the area of the state we lived in didn’t have the lush, green parks that dot the Spokane Valley.

In eastern Washington, the month of September is gorgeous and still perfect for picnicking. So, if you still haven’t embraced the outdoors while eating a sandwich on a comfy blanket, put a picnic on your calendar and let me give you five tips for a perfect experience.

We have enjoyed numerous picnics at parks this summer.

Choose the Right Park – The Spokane and Spokane Valley boast countless public parks for citizens to enjoy. But before you choose a park based solely on a Google search, do a little bit of scouting and make sure it has everything you need. Our family looks for a fun playground, plenty of big pine trees for shade, sturdy picnic benches, and lots of green space. Parks that meet all these requirements aren’t hard to find but that doesn’t mean places that lack them don’t exist. Just do your homework.

Bring Stuff – The playground and human interaction should be enough to keep your family entertained, but it isn’t a bad idea to bring some items from home that could optimize your afternoon or evening. You can never go wrong with a frisbee or football. Sidewalk chalk is a hit with Sloan. If you are like me, bringing a croquet set is a great way to take advantage of the vast space offered by a park and it also allows you to set up the course of your dreams!

Remember to bring blankets!

The Food – A picnic isn’t a picnic without the food. In fact, I feel like a picnic is an excuse to overdo it just a bit. Sometimes this means picking something up at a favorite restaurant. On separate occasions this summer we have brought food to the park from our favorite cheesesteak, sandwich, and fried chicken joints. But if you want a more traditional picnic, pack it yourself! That’s what we did for our picnic lunch yesterday. We met my sister and her kids at the park and we split up the food duties. Sid and I brought hot dogs and chips while my sister brought oranges, cookies, and drinks. It was a blast and pretty tasty.

At our picnic yesterday, we packed hot dogs.

Pack a Cooler – The drinks are just as important as the food. Grab your ice chest and throw in bottled water, soda, and some Capri Suns for the kids. Oh yes, don’t forget the beer. Just remember to bring Solo cups with you. You can empty your ice dispenser to keep the drinks cool but I prefer to pick up a bag of ice at the gas station and dump it in. When you get to the park, crack open your beverage and enjoy. Whether a soda or an adult beverage, an ice cold drink tastes incredible in the middle of beautiful scenery outside.

Be Prepared – It is important to be ready for any obstacles you might face once on-site. In terms of pests, you could encounter a member of the bee family buzzing around your picnic. Keep that in mind and bring appropriate repellent. During this time of pandemic, bring plenty of disinfectant wipes to scrub benches and play equipment. Most importantly of all, make sure everyone goes to the bathroom prior to arriving at the picnic. I have been in the park facilities and they are not pretty!

I mean it folks, don’t let this summer slip away without a picnic. With the Labor Day weekend approaching, pick a day and make it happen. Don’t Blink.

A Short But Sweet Spokane Holiday

To use a cliché, it was short but sweet. From the time Sidney, Sloan, and I landed in Spokane to the moment our plane left the city on New Year’s Eve, we had spent less than 100 hours in my hometown. The minimal amount of time we had at our disposal just meant we had to make every second count – and we did.

Sloan and her “papa” once again bonded when they were together.

We arrived in darkness at 1 a.m. on Thursday and left my parents’ house in darkness at 3 a.m. on Monday. But this was a trip that was punctuated by light. I am talking vibrant, joyful light – the type that can only be produced by love. Throughout our time in Spokane, the true Christmas spirit filled up my childhood home as my parents and siblings embraced us.

Sloan was welcomed to Spokane with a sign that her Uncle Glen made.

It wasn’t a trip that was spent cramming as many things into a short period of time as possible. Instead, most of our 98 hours were spent inside my mom and dad’s living room, the exact same place my siblings and I grew up. It was in that space where the grandchildren took center stage. Sloan joined her cousins, Mikayla and Johnny, as they played hard together (sometimes nicely, sometimes not). As the babies played, the adults talked. Our Reser Pride text message group came alive. No longer did we need iPhones to communicate with each other from thousands of miles away. Rather, the common roof over our heads allowed for simply our voices (not thumbs) to do the talking.

Sloan had a great time playing with her cousins. Johnny is the son of my sister, Miranda.

The living room also hosted our special Reser family Christmas, games of Heads Up, and plenty of delicious snacking/drinking. It was our hub for the vacation and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

My mom loved being with her grandbabies in the living room.

Not to say that we didn’t leave the house entirely. We hit a couple of our favorite spots, attended mass at St. Thomas More, enjoyed a family dinner at a popular restaurant, and capitalized on a couple of post-Christmas sales at the mall.

We attended mass at St. Thomas More and posed in front of the beautiful Nativity.

But for the most part, we stayed home. If we weren’t all gathered in the living room, you could have found us…

Our family eating at Prospector’s, a delicious restaurant in North Spokane.

– Eating a prime rib dinner and other meals in the dining room.
– Watching Washington State’s Alamo Bowl victory over Iowa State in the basement.
– Playing in the snow in the front yard.
– Stealing Christmas candy out of the freezer in the kitchen.

We had a great time playing in the snow.

Of course the best part was watching relationships continue to strengthen. Sloan loves her grandparents so much and would constantly say Grandma hold you (“hold you” being her phrase for wanting to be held) and Love you, Papa. The bond that my sister and brother have with Sidney is special and they picked up from where they left off in the summer. I continued to get to know Glen’s girlfriend, Carrie, and I had a nice time getting drinks with my brother-in-law, Jay. Everyone got along so well and it was such a warm and welcoming environment to be in – one that makes it tough to leave.

There is a special bond between my siblings and Sidney.

But we are back in Myrtle Beach now and are left to reflect on our time in Spokane. It was another special trip that exemplified how much my parents and siblings love and support our little family. At the same time, it allowed us to reciprocate the same sentiments as well. Until next time, Spokane! Don’t Blink.

Couldn’t end this blog post without a picture of the LIVING ROOM.