Friday, November 3, 2023

Bourbon & Cider

 Hi Friend!

 Started the week off with a little power outage, and I got to break out my religious, yet un-scented, candles to add to my already glowing bath and body works display.  Then on Wednesday I got a surprise visit from Zach and Fran for dinner (in which they brought me dinner – I don’t want anyone thinking they were silly enough to think I had dinner magically available.) On Thursday, we had a delightful party at work.  I dressed as Ted Lasso, and then when it was time to paint pumpkins, I made sure it was in theme.  I thought there was simply no way I would win the contest because it was my first time painting a pumpkin, but I was delighted to be wrong!  We also played a game where you had to guess what spooky character you were, and let me tell you it took me forever.  A real person, related to a book, an American, who had never killed anyone or was in government.  You might have already figured it out faster than I did, b/c it was Edgar Allen Poe. 


I then skedaddled home to pick up Percy and get to the airport. 


Me: I’m doing a last-minute, quick trip like the old days to see if I can still do it without exhausting myself.

Lucas: The old days?  You did a last-minute weekend trip to Vegas in March!

Me: Well, that doesn’t count. (and I was technically younger then.)


I started a new series, the plated prisoner, on my way to NY and was done with the 4 books, 4 days later, on Monday night.  I have a problem.  And also, I was very stressed out to find out that it ends on a total cliff-hanger and there are two more books that haven’t come out yet.  A point I yelled at Marissa for, early on Tuesday morning, and then paused long enough to say hi and meet her mother, saying, “I don’t always yell at her in the morning, I promise.” 


 Maureen picked me up bright and early, and then I tried to get a quick cat nap before getting some work done.  She came over shortly after because she had some trouble with her oven.  Namely, she put some meatballs in the oven, and then the oven, of it’s own accord locked.  And then decided starting to “Clean” and things started smoking, but then it went to “Cool” so she decided to go next door.  But apparently, that’s when things started getting really smokey and Pat had to try to pull the oven out from the wall to disconnect to power.


Mo: I went to the other house because the oven said he was “cool!”

Pat: He wasn’t cool.

Mo: Oh look you can see inside!

(You know, because it was on fire, and this was interesting b/c the light hadn’t working in quite some time.)


Then, Mo went back down to pick up James, Kevin’s Godfather, from the airport, and then we all had dinner at my parents’ house.  When Mo when to pick up the pizza, Pat yelled to her to close the back (trunk) door, but she didn’t hear him and suddenly a packed car started spilling out.  And now that I’m writing it all out, Mo had quite a long, crazy day.  Which might explain what happened next.  After hanging out for a couple hours outside, my dad not saying anything, he decides to bring up the earlier incident with the car door… Mo’s response was a flat out F*ck You, followed by James saying, “A lot has changed up on the hill.  I don’t remember the language being so colorful in Jefferson Valley when I lived here.”


Other amusing stories of the night:


Mo was saying that there is a quarter inch gap between the two walls in her classroom, and every day this kid would randomly put his face up to the gap and scream, and Mo would tell him to stop screaming at the wall, but he’d keep doing it.  Until one day, she handed the kids bestie a straw and some water and told him precisely what she could NOT do to a student.  So the next time the kid went to scream, he got a face full of water, and while he was spurting, Mo was saying, “I told you to stop screaming at the wall.”


And then Stacey said that while all the kids in her class were taking a test, she happened to see a big ass bug, so she yelled at a student, mid-exam, “Oh my god, run, Lynette!! Get out of here!”


The following day we were up early, getting ready to watch Kevin play at SUNY Maritime.  I walked into the house and jokingly said to James, “You’re wearing blue? What if that’s the Coast Guard colors!?” Not knowing a single thing about the coast guard.  He immediately became defensive and put on another long sleeved maroon shirt over the blue shirt.  2 minutes later, Pat was like, “How many layers are you wearing? You’re going to overheat!”  So, James is definitely glad he came to visit.  Then we took pictures with all of us using mugs adorned with our adorable Godson, Kevin (#79).



 Mo went ALL out on the tailgating spread, and Kevin had 6 of his Aunts and Uncles there, and the game was a real thrill ride, where there were canons and push-ups and Maritime won with 3 seconds on the clock when the Coast Guard missed a field goal. Also, I discovered the delight that is Bourbon and Apple Cider.  YUM. 


As we were cleaning up the table, Mo says, “We can’t throw out the tomatoes because I grew them, so they were like 95 dollars, or 17 dollars for each cherry tomato.”


James: I just talked to Kevin. Good Job, Maureen.  He didn’t just come out like that, that was a lot of work you put in there. 


Just as we were about to get into the car, Pat was using a bungie cord to tie up the back trailer, and it snapped back and hit him in the eye.  So, I drove home.  There was some discussion on if Pat was going to go to the party later, and shock from the backseat when he said he wasn’t going, you know because of the bungie cord to the eyeball, and the full on swelling shut of said eye.  We got home, and then ten minutes later, I was driving us to a Halloween Party and Mel and Bennett’s. That’s when Mo started making fun of me that I was so concerned about Pat’s eye, and then I had to explain once again that I shouldn’t be made fun of for CARING.  But honestly, I think this might be a losing battle.   Mo said she got us matching costumes in diff colors.  I imagined M&M's but this was way cooler. We're spooky neon skeletons! 


The following morning, I made Mo & Frita playtest a game with me, and then before I knew it, I was getting ready for the airport. 


Frita: Are you going to get your treat before you leave? Unless you don’t think it’ll get through customs.  You could get hijacked.  I guess they don’t do that anymore.  They used to hijack planes all the time.  God, your daughter doesn’t have any sense of history. 

Me (uncontrollably giggling): I’ll take a treat on my way out, but I’m taking the dollar, too. 


You’ll all be pleased to know that I’m still capable of last minute, quick trips to NY, but I did wake up at 5:30 this morning full of energy, and THAT certainly didn’t used to happen in the good old days. 


Love you, Mean it. 

Tuesday, October 24, 2023



Hi Friend!


Walked to my car this morning to see a neighbor standing and staring at her car. 


Me: Are you having trouble convincing yourself to go to work?

Her: No. Someone hit my car yesterday and I’m just mourning the damage.

Me: Well, that’s much worse. 


(Even though I was actually torn between saying, “It wasn’t me!” and “Do you need help getting vengeance?” I really don’t know her well enough…)


We had an in-office physical day last week.  Never having had a physical in the office, I was moderately nervous, which didn’t help when Frita was like, “are you going to have pee in a cup?” because then I just kept imagining carrying said cup o’ pee through the office.  Bracing myself, I walked into the office, armed with three, 24 oz bottles of water, ready to get physical’ed. The new HR Director was in the kitchen, near the box of delicious blazin’ bagels, so I shared my anxiety.  She, wisely, told me it wasn’t that kind of physical and offered to share a bagel with me.  I, neurotically, refused saying I didn’t want anything messing with my numbers.  5 minutes later, someone else in the office pulled up the page with what was actually going to happen in the physical, and I came back in the kitchen and had a bagel.  This is what happened AFTER I had a “physical.”


Me: I PASSED! Nearly perfect.  But I do regret that bagel.

Everyone proceeded to stare at me, as if it isn’t a competition, and that I’m the crazy one. 


Several hours after the physical.

Me: I really want a bagel, but only half of one.

HR: You had your chance.

Me: I know! I’m sorry! We can totes be bagel buddies next time!!


So, making friends in the office is going well. 


I finished the ACOTAR series.  And then I might have read it again for good measure.  Then I booked a last-minute flight to NY for the coming weekend because I heard Kevin’s Godfather was going to his game, and I am not one to be shown up.  Also, it sounded like a lot of fun, and since D&J are out of town, I didn’t have a lot going on for Halloween.  But also, the godparent thing.


On Wednesday, I went for a walk with Marissa, but instead of the park, we just decided to do a loop on the main streets.  This is actually the same loop that Percy has been doing with his new dog walker, and he was genuinely stoked to show me where he goes. It was adorbs.  As we were walking our of our space, these two kids told us that someone had stalled out right by our entrance and was blocking up all the traffic.  They told us this news with just buzzing energy, that we stopped to ask if we could help, or just push him out of the way of traffic, but I don’t think the guy understood English very well and our hand gestures only got us so far, so our attempt didn’t go very far.   He was not there when we got back, so hopefully, help came soon after.  I guess it’s the thought that counts? Anyway, not sure you can see it in this picture, but I was followed by a guy on a motorcycle this week with the head of a Predator.  Just another day in Kirkland, I guess.



I went to Becky’s Spooky Tea Party on Saturday.  I even dressed up as Ted Lasso! Becky was a super hostess, especially because she encouraged boozin’ up the tea and hot apple cider, and I think there is nothing classier than whiskey in teacups.  I got to meet some of her new neighbor friends, and chat about books and other delights. 


Jared: Did you get another Christmas Tree?

Becky: Good Sir, I would never.  We already have 5 large Christmas Trees and 3 miniature ones!

Jared: Amazon says it’s pink.

Becky: However, if I did, I would definitely put mermaids on it and it would be fabulous.


Becky has been concerned that she’s been drooling more than usual in her sleep.  When she asked Jared about it…

Jared: Yeah. You have been breathing wetly lately.

Becky: Why aren’t you concerned about me!?


On Sunday, I had every intention of being lazy and reading, but then Lindsey asked me to come over.  It took everything I had to put pants on and leave the house.  I picked up lunch on my way, while catching up with Erika.  And then, we played two more games.  These games were intended for 6 year olds, but I enjoyed them immensely, and I have a feeling they might find their way under the Christmas tree this year for people.  Zach agreed, but I also think the fact that I only made him play 2 games instead of 20 might have helped the equation.  Before long, I was back on my couch with Percy, reading and not doing any of my chores.  A perfect Sunday. 


And with that, I wish you all the very best week.


Love you, Mean it. 

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

You don't say Yucks to me!


Hi Friend!


Got home this week and I needed a day to just snuggle with Percy and catch up with the fam.  I did my best to work around a mini-migraine and general dehydration, before heading into work with a suitcase full of games. 


My biggest news of the week is that I got invited to a party.  By a co-worker.  A new friend co-worker.  I immediately called my mom, like a 5 year old, to give her the amazing news.  I also called Becky, and this is where things get cringy, because while I did get invited, I also brought up the subject, knowing she was having a party, hoping that I would get invited.  But I was smooooothe until I called Becky and it all got ruined.


Me: I got invited to the Iron Flame Party!

Becky: Great! I got the text, and immediately told her that I might have already told you about the party so she should send the invite to you as well.

Me: NOOOOOOOOO! Now she’s going to know that I knew and then I’m suddenly going to lose all cool factor!

Becky: Yes.  Book club is tomorrow night, so if you want us to not talk and make fun of you, then you’ll have to come so we can’t.

Me: I can’t come tomorrow!!!!!



Me: Becky is going to make fun of me tomorrow at your book club.  I have accepted this.  Please do not uninvite me to your party.

Co-worker: Did you kick a puppy? Because that or worse would be the only grounds for uninviting you.  And even then I don’t like conflict so I probably still would never uninvite you.


Well isn’t THAT a relief!


Zach calls, and I respond with a text: Can I call you later? I’m in a meeting.

Zach: No.  This was the last straw. 

Zach: We’re meeting at 5PM [for dinner] and then some people are going to the morgue.

Me: Oh! I wanted to go to the morgue, but I thought that was happening on Friday?

Zach: You can take that up with the higher ups.


Here’s the thing.  Haunted Houses scare me, but Dawne loves them.  So, one time a year, I’ll take all my courage and I brave the scariest and most well-done haunted house, also known as the Morgue.  I need to be in the middle of the pack, and I need to cling to everyone around me.  And my voice is completely hoarse by the end.  I speak directly to every single scary person, including things like YUCKS. YUCKS. YUCKS. To which that demon said, “YOU DON’T SAY YUCKS TO ME!” so I said, “I’m sorry, but seriously, yucks.”


I made it to the very end, with a chainsaw toting clown chasing us out, and then we got Krispie Kreme.


Friday afternoon, I worked from Dawne’s and Zach was putting together balloons for Fran’s party, and I told him to be very careful because the last time we did the balloons, they kept popping and it took nearly a week before Percy could come back to the house without shaking.  20 min later, a balloon popped, and then another, and then I had to put Percy in the car for a bit.  I then tried to lure him back into the house, and he ran to hide in Dawne’s room.  Jordan put Gilmore Girls on for him, “Because that’s a show that comforts all of us.”  The following day, only one more balloon popped, but it happen to pop right above Percy’s head, so we didn’t see him for the rest of the evening.


Saturday morning, we went to Bob’s for the corn maze.  It was a little muddy, but not as muddy as that time I had to take my pants off in the parking lot.  Everyone followed my lead, and I even gave a family who was lost a map and told them where there were in the map – my good deed for the day.  Marissa wore an ACOTAR bat boys shirt, just for me, and then I tried to talk to her about a series she hadn’t read in two years.  Everyone loves when I do that! At one point, Lucas made a comment, and I had a dozen different comments I could have said, and I shoved them down.


Lucas: We drove here from Tacoma!

Me: I didn’t say anything.

Lucas: But you look like…

Me: Oh I know, but I didn’t actually SAY anything, and I think I deserve some credit for that.


Because while I’m trying to be a better person, I still need accolades for when I’m not a terrible person.  When I told my mom, she said, “I bet you missed your Uncle Ray at that point – because he would have said whatever it was, and then you would have gotten satisfaction and still got to be a better person.”  You have no idea…


Fran’s party was amazing. She totally supplied way too much food, but she also had containers available for people to bring food home with them.  She had a live band, and a dance instructor, and I swear, it felt like we were in a different country all night.  Totally magical. 


On Sunday, I avoided a lot of chores, and then waited far too long to start the last ACOTAR book, but then finished it Monday evening. 


Me: Just finished a Court of Silver Flames. Now, I can, you know, go to work and be an adult for a couple of days.

Becky: Yay for going back to being a functional adult!

Me: I should have started it earlier, but I’m very irresponsible.

Becky: It’s your best quality! My favorite thing about you.  It’s what makes you so easily influenced towards all the ridiculous things we do.

Me: Irresponsible and ridiculous is the bestest combination!


I broke my fav Halo mug this morning, which I thought might have been an omen, but I found it on Poshmark and just bought a new one for 12 dollars like the mistake never happened. I didn't know I had a fav Halo mug, but it fit 12 oz of coffee, plus half and half and a shot of espresso.  So, it was a hard worker, even if it had an old UNSC logo on it.


That’s a wrap! 


Love you, Mean It.



Thursday, October 12, 2023



Hi Friend!


I am not 100% sure what the week before last.  I definitely hung out with puppies and watched Gilmore Girls and did laundry and avoided some key things that I had to do.  So basically, a typical October week.  I also went over to Becky’s and watched her bake cookies, so I did see two humans, at least. 


I tried to vent about being of a certain age with a built-in muscle memory for two spaces after a period, and how I’ll never change.  And the only response I got from Becky was, “This angst is 16 years over-due, and it took an entire year for me to beat that habit” which just reinforced how I won’t be torturing myself for a year for something that is truly ridiculous.  And then I ate a cookie and moved on with my life.


I tried looking at the last 3 years of this time in case there was a nugget of interesting stuff to share, but it sure does look like I hung out with puppies, photographed those puppies for Fall cards and packed every year, so let’s just move on to the part where I took my suitcase to a new location.


Last week, I went to Essen/Spiel in Germany for the first time.  New job, new convention.  7 whole days of travel and show to try to stay super lovely and professional.  I started the trip by wrapping up a bunch of presents for my boss to open on her birthday.  After the first flight, we’re waiting in the customs line in Amsterdam (which we would end up waiting in for over 2 hours).  I left my boss to go to the bathroom, and when I got back she had an appalled look on her face.  I immediately became defensive, b/c dude, I was SO speedy, but then she pointed next to her, to the man on the ground and said, "He just passed out, but I've seen that look before and I'm pretty sure he just died."  And then it was 5 min before someone in the crowd started doing CPR and 5 more minutes before emergency folks ran over, erected a tent, and then... who knows.  That put a real damper on the rest of the day, not going to lie.  Also, we watched hundreds of people panic because they weren’t allowing people to skip the line until they were ten min from their departure time, also fun.  All the while, I was pleasant and professional.


The best part of the show was walking around, playing games and then having my boss buy me anything I wanted.  I’m not sure it gets better than that.  We also met lots of designers and had crepes and I got to see Kathi! And I read the first 4 books of the ACOTAR series.  And then we had a flight delay and cancellation which lead to a 12-hour delay in getting home and having to run to our gates, become super dehydrated and hungry and tired and I still managed to be pleasant and professional!



I’m going to leave the story there for now, and try to jump in with more excitement next time.  I hope you’re all having a super fun October. 


Miss you lots, and love you more. 

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Brine Shots


My cousins returned from their jaunt into central Washington on Thursday.  We fired up the Solo Stove for some S’mores, shared some stories and prepared for a big slumber party.  I was glad I had someone clean my place before their arrival – not because you could tell after 5 minutes of their arrival, but because two of them had to sleep on an air mattress on the floor and I felt really good that it had been mopped earlier that day. 


On Friday, Erin made us all eggs and bacon, and I pulled out the honey and butter and warmed up some croissants.  I thought that maybe I had added honey to the croissant without realizing it, but actually, Erin had used the dunkin’ donuts creamer with sugar in it for the eggs, and honestly, I kinda loved it.  10 out of 10, would eat again.  Then they all went exploring Seattle, including an Argosy cruise, while I worked and then I brought them over to my favorite HH place: Anderson School.  When we returned, I offered some additional ways to entertain them, but we ended up just chatting and facetiming my mom and my sister which was plenty of entertainment.  We also asked Frita about some of the crazy-sounding dishes that they were talking about.  He kind of remembered one of them, so Erin asked what his mom called it.  He quickly replied, “Supper.”


After about 5 hours of sleep, it was time to drive Erin and Jennifer to the airport.  A couple of hours later, Marissa and I met up with my WA cousins at Stocker Farms for the Sunflower Festival and my first of many Fall activities.  So many activities for adults and kids.  Wall puzzles, bouncy areas, historic communication area, a cavity cannon (AKA candy Cannon), Tricycles, Rubber duck races, Ziplines, and an area to pick your own flowers.  My bouquet was amazing, but was also filled with bugs, and even though I believe lady bugs are very lucky, I think they are luckier when they are outside, so that’s where my flowers will remain. 




I was a pro at the puzzles, and Dawne was very amused at how very proud I was of myself when I made a mr-pumpkin-head.  Apparently, I had the same look that Dawne had taking pictures of her little Tire-neer on Tire Mountain.  I believe the expression is best described as “Look what I made!”




Interactive Historical Landmark Exhibit!



After the sunflower festival, we came back and hung out for a bit.  I tried my best to stay awake for the Lantern Festival in Greenlake, but totally failed.  But I did discover this Tension Tamer tea that has a secret ingredient… Catnip?




The weather was bordering on raining, and was def cold, but the pool was delightful.  The following day we all met for breakfast at Sabine’s before walking the Ballard Farmers Market. I’m sorry that the FL cousins had already left because they had free shots of Brine! After the market, we took the opportunity to go swimming one last time.  And then I introduced Dawne to Snapchat, so that took up the rest of the night!



Hope your September has been amazing!

Love you, Mean it.


Thursday, September 21, 2023



Hi Friend!


I’m going to tell you a secret.  I love waking up to a cloudy day. Dark and cool, maybe a little sprinkle of rain? Not every day, but after months of blazing sun, to find out that I can cozy up with a blanket and a book, without any guilt that I should be outside making the best of the weather?  Glorious. 


Nate’s pup Archer is a big fan of catching flies.  He’s pretty good at it, too.  On September 15th, he was going for a fly and swatted one of the Lego Disney castle towers and lo and behold, we found the last Easter Egg!


Last week, Jackie told me about BOGO September ThursYays at Starbucks, and I mentioned it to a co-worker and then all of a sudden half the office (okay so 4 of us) were headed out for coffee.  And let me tell you, the coffee was fantastic, but getting to join an impromptu social work outing was one of the highlights of my week.  #howdoifastforwardtowhenweareallBFFs?


Had a fun weekend with my cousins (Erin, Jen, Kim & Pat) visiting!  I started the trip by sending a lengthy google doc of possible activities, because best fun is planned fun! I’m mostly kidding about that, but we did get in a trip to the Space Needle, said “hi!” to the Fremont troll, hit up Pike’s Place Market and then I took them to Capital Hill to the Unicorn where we saw a drag show.  Mimosas Caberet: Willy Wonka and the Horror Show (which required very little in the way of adjusting the script to turn it into a “Horror Show.”)  Best quote from the afternoon was definitely from Erin who exclaimed, “That’s a man!? WOW!”


We were sitting around chatting one night when the subject of Math came up, and Jen, intending to deliver a complement, called Maureen an Idiot Savant. 


Me: Um, She’s a savant maybe, but I wouldn’t call her an idiot savant.

Jen: No, it’s a good thing!


That’s when I explained what an idiot savant was, and that’s also when Jen realized why people gave her weird looks when she has called them idiot savants her whole life and then tried to convince them that it was a good thing! Really!


We called Maureen to tell her the story and then filled her in on our other adventures, and then Erin tried to convince us that there was a food called Gooba Gabba and that we were the weird ones for never hearing of it. 

 Last night, I headed over to Zach’s friend Tristan’s house.  Zach told Dawne to call me because I would be more likely to say yes.  But the truth is, Dawne happened to call me before I had completely decompressed into couch and pajamas – but just barely – because even if it’s only a 3 minute drive, peeling yourself out of a cocoon of blankets and puppy and putting real pants on can be unsurmountable.  Thus, the timing aligned, and I headed over to play some games.  As soon as I walked in, Tristan’s 2-year-old looked at me and asked, “Puppy?” The truth is, I’m not sure she even knows my name, she just knows I’m the girl with the tiny dog and by how many times she said “Puppy?” to me, I’m fairly certain I’m pretty worthless without him. 

Let’s see, two years ago this week I took my first solo vacay up to Fairbanks, Alaska for the weekend.  This trip had two purposes, the first was to check off my 49th state and the second was to see the northern lights.  I also drove around looking for Moose, and then when I got back to the B&B I was staying at, they were totally just hanging out in the back yard.  Naturally, I knocked on the door of the strangers next door and was like, “MOOSE!” and they, surprisingly, appreciated my random knock!  I tried for two nights in a row to see the lights and had to leave at 2am to catch my flight out, sad that I hadn’t seen them. BUT THEN, I got on the plane and the whole sky was lit up with the Northern Lights and it was absolutely spectacular.  Now, I just need someone to go to Alabama with me and I’ll have experienced all 50 states!

 My iphone couldn't fully capture the glory, but you know here's some "proof": 

I think that’s all that’s fit to print, as they say. 



Thursday, September 14, 2023

Do Your Best and Forget The Rest



Hi Friend!


I jumped in the lake! And convinced most of the boat to jump with me.  I also went to great lengths to try to find the right color leather upholstery patching to fix the boat, and then through some miscommunication and a real “whatevs” attitude from Dawne, part of the boat looks amazing and the main, most seeable patch work looks like I used black duct tape.  I’m still learning that its okay that not everything has to be done exactly how I want it to be done. 


I also went to see Kane Brown at the Puyallup Fair Labor Day weekend with Marissa.  I had high intentions to get a couple dozen scones and bring them home to share with the fam, but that’s not what happened.  It was raining when we got there, so I pulled out the ponchos that I brought with me (people were offering a $100 for them, but I think I could have gotten them to go higher.)  I didn’t want to carry around soggy scones, but I also wanted a scone, so I made Marissa wait in line with me.  If only I had captured the photo of the chicks face when I asked for a single scone. Total and complete shock (and dare I say, pity?).  She wanted to call me an idiot, but what she did was say, “How long did you wait in line for a single scone?!” Both the scone and the concert were delicious.


hahaha this guy... 

Over the summer I took a road trip with my siblings to Montana. For months before we left for this trip, Sean was training for the hikes we would hike, and heavily encouraging me to get ready.  After one of these calls, I spoke to Erika who oh-so-helpfully pointed out that I could be miserable for 6 weeks (of getting in shape) or be miserable for 3 days. I think we all know what I choose.  Sean warned us that we’d need to get up as early as 6:30, but also warned us that “bear drink in the morning.” 


I told Morgan about the above, and she told me that she went on a hike with Sean and Dave, only she worked out a head of time thinking that it was be a nice little jaunt up Anthony’s Nose (funny every time), but when she walked upstairs from her work out, they were dressed in like all of REI and then had to scale up the side of the mountain (but she couldn’t complain b/c one guy was carrying a 4 year old.)  And then she got to the top, and she doesn’t like heights, so it was decidedly not worth the trip.  Then when they went back down, they just used the trail with the STAIRS. 


We stopped in Leavenworth, consuming pretzels, sausages and beer from one size of the town to the other.  When we actually got to Whitefish, we stopped at a tourist information booth.  They looked at our group and suggested we get there at dawn for the sunset and that we absolutely must hike the “Highline” trail.  Discussions were had, and suddenly we were all up at 2:45, to get in the car by 3:15, armed with bear spray (because that’s when the bears drink!)


At 3:19, in the car, in the driveway.

Sean: The days a wasting!

Maureen: I brought my donor card so people know what my blood type was.

Stacey: I hope my uber app works.

Pat: You don’t need bear spray as long as you aren’t the slowest.

Me: That’s why I said I should carry it!!


So, we get to Glacier National Park, it’s still pitch black out, Sean is driving.  We are the only ones there.  We park, and its dark and freezing, and we locate the sign for the Highline trail, and start walking down… and then stop and go, “we shouldn’t be doing down to behind the mountain to see the sunrise, we should be going up.”  Maureen walks a little further, but then turns around, and we all cross the parking area to walk up a different trail. Sean was sooo nice about how incredibly out of shape I was. “Do your best and forget the rest!” is now going to be one of my new go-to phrases.  He also, super sweetly, stood in front of me on my way down so I wouldn’t pitch forward on the stairs (which is seriously a big fear of mine.)  When we got back to the parking lot, and found Pat, who had been sleeping in the car the whole time, he asked us if we saw any wildlife. We had not, but he sure did! b/c he there were mountain goats… in damn the parking lot!


The Highline Trail

Oh, we also rented a boat and did THE most white trash thing ever... in that we took all of the beverages out of the fridge and made a "cooler" with ice and a trash bag.  Pic for proof: 

I drove through the rest of the park, only now it was light enough to see the road, and Sean was no longer laid back about the drive, because he could actually see where we were.  I swear I was going slow and being careful, but I think Sean would have preferred to be blindfolded and had his own brake system in the passenger side.  We also drove back and finally got to see what the “Highline” trail that we were supposed to be on looked like… and it was very narrow pathway on the edge of the mountain with very steep drop off.  That is when we realized had we followed that trail, when the sun had come up, we all would have been too terrified to turn back.  I’ll never know what about us made those information people think we were tough enough for their advice, but I bet they had good laugh after we left. 


I obsessively watched Yellowstone when I returned from our trip.  My love of Rip and Beth has no limits.  And what I learned from all that is I’m not tough enough for Montana, and even if I was, they don’t want me living there anyway.  But it sure was nice to visit!  


Over Labor Day weekend I also read the Deadly Education series, per Dr. Rach’s suggestion, and then had to call her at 7am on a Sunday to tell her I was FURIOUS at her for suggesting that I read it.  But, actually, it was great.  So, feel free to read it and call me after book 2 with the same reaction.  I’ll take your fury.  Totally worth it.  Last weekend I finished 1883 (as depressing as any Oregon Trail themed show can be, but also excellent!), and I read Fourth Wing. I will be accepting any and all calls from people who want to talk about Fourth Wing (or Deadly Education, Yellowstone – but I haven’t finished 1923, so you’ll need to give me some time on that one.)


And I’ll wrap up by telling you that there’s this thing on TikTok that is happening this week where women are discovering that men think about the Roman Empire way more than we could ever imagine.  Weekly, sometimes DAILY.  To test the theory, I called Zach and asked him the last time he thought about the Roman Empire. His response? “An hour ago while we were at Portillo’s.”  Case closed; no further research is needed at this time.