family fun, food, money, weather

a trip to the snow–fail

Wednesday January 15, 2020

Last weekend did not go as planned.

I drove the family toward The Summit at Snoqualmie with the intention of doing some tubing. We didn’t get there.

It snowing in the pass and chains were required for vehicles that did not have all wheel drive. That meant for the first time ever i would have to put chains on the tires. It was harder than it looks in the video instructions. If not fir my nephew it would not have happened. But we got chained up and kept going.

However thew bad weather caused so many accidents that I-90 westbound was closed. So we had to turn around at the next exit and headed back home. My disappointment was as deep as the 20 plus inches of snow that fallen in the pass. I’m not saying it was as disastrous as Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow,


nor was it as epic as the scene in The Fellowship of the Ring when the company of the nine walkers had to backtrack on the way over Caradhras,


but I hated wasting the time, the money, the gas and the wear and tear on the car.

Still there was enough time to stop and let the youngster in our party to play in the snow to his heart’s content. On the way home we decided to stop for food at IHOP. It is a rare thing when my entire household gets to eat out together so I was happy for the opportunity.

While we were standing in the waiting area, I felt a sudden chill. Turns out my pants were soaked. Made for a miserable meal for me and the rest of the drive home was no more pleasant. When we got back home I dumped those wet clothes and stood in front of the oven for 10 minutes until I was warm and dry again.

At some point, later in the winter, we will give the Summit at Snoqualimie trip another try. But it was too much for us this weekend. However I’ve learned two important lessons. 1) If you’re going somewhere that requires chaining up, you should practice putting on the chains before you are in the bad weather and 2) it’s not enough to wear warm clothing; wear waterproof clothing.

Chaining Up.jpg

Here endeth the lesson.

Christmas, church, family fun, food, recovering from surgery, vocation

Christmas Eve–Christmas Day

Friday December 27, 2019

This Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and the run up to them were certainly better than last year. It would have been hard of this year’s holiday to be worse than last year’s.

Last year I was reeling from some emotional blows around my vocation that made church a painful place. I was sick and having abdominal pain that would eventually land me in the hospital (again) and put me on the road to surgery. There were family issues that made the Christmas Eve and Christmas day celebrations tense and not as festive.

This year things were much improved. I’m feeling much better physically, the result of a successful major surgery. I’ve recovered from the emotional blows of last December. I’ve made peace with the exercise of my vocation. Most of all the family issues have come to a place of less crazy.

So this year I was able to go to church and worship in spirit. I reveled in the chaos of Christmas Eve preparations. I observed my Christmas Eve midnight tradition with tears of gratitude. I took delight in the delight of my grandnephew as he opened presents. I got to preach a decent Christmas Day homily. I rejoiced in a Christmas lunch with family. I enjoyed a film with the fam at the end of Christmas Day.

It was simple and good, very good.