Disclaimer: This post and some of the subsequent travel posts involve non-vegan but meatless food that we consumed. If that bothers anyone, consider yourself having had fair warning.
Sunday morning early we went over about 7.30am to visit my mom before she left for church and got to see a beautiful sunrise as we got in the car to go. Both GooGoo and Lou Who enjoyed seeing grandma and playing with toys. Then we went back to my dad’s for breakfast.
Mr Pine Nut had to get some work done for a client before we left, since we didn’t know when he’d next have internet, so that kept him busy until after 11. While he was doing that, I went to the classiest of classy stores, Walmart, and picked up a few things we needed and a gift for my brand-new nephew I’d be meeting in a couple days. It was a really exciting, phenomenal gift: diapers.
Mr Pine Nut still wasn’t done when I finished that errand, so it was back to car tetris for me. I had that car packed to the GILLS. Like a puzzle. Mr Pine Nut was positive there was no room for Éiden, but I assured him that once we unloaded all the stuff that was my sister’s, there would be ample room.
So, finally about 11.45 we were on our way to Spokane. It was drizzling as we left. Between Yakistan and Ellensburg was quite the downpour, but it cleared up almost the instant we got onto I-90.
I don’t care for the drive between Ellensburg and Spokane. It is srs boringness. That is, until one leaves the scrublands and starts getting into the pines. The pines herald a transition that means Soon we will be in My Mountains. Despite this boring stretch, however, I-90 is a special highway to me. I used to live within sight of it when I lived in northern Idaho as a child, and sometimes I’d find a map and trace along I-90 eastward through all sorts of places I’d never been and wonder if I’d ever see them.
Nearly one-third of my life was spent in northern Idaho. They were such crucial years (ages 7 1/2 to 16) that despite the fact that Yakima was home to me for close to as long (6.5 yrs), it doesn’t and never will have the same hold on me.
But enough rambling about I-90. We took the route Google gave us to Mr Pine Nut’s aunt’s home. It was definitely the scenic route in every sense of the word. The trees were gorgeous. We passed a charming cemetery I’d have liked to have explored had we had more time. Someday!
When we arrived at Aunt L’s, I got all our cold things in the fridge and our blue ice back in the freezer. I was very sleepy. So after visiting a while Aunt L started to make supper and I lay on the couch for a bit while she and Mr Pine Nut chatted in the kitchen. Aunt L made zucchini casserole, waldorf salad, steamed baby carrots, and grated potato salad which was amazing. It was simple too: sour cream, grated potatoes, and cheese, topped with a sprinkle of paprika. It was totes unvegan, but sooooo delish. Bet I could make a vegan version though. Because it was sooooo delish.
The next morning, Monday morning the 28th, we had hoped to go to Manito Park. But the weatherman predicted a high of 45 for the day, and there was a nice stiff breeze, so we opted to meet some old friends of mine at their house rather than at the park. We spent a few hours with them, and she made us the most delish vegan lentil soup with carrots, tomatoes and rosemary. On the side, homemade crackers and apples and steamed broccoli from the garden. We looked at before and after photos of their house they had fixed up (the transformation was astounding).
We had to make a thrift store stop on the way back to Aunt L’s for a coat for Mr Pine Nut, who had unfortunately left his coat behind at church. We pretty much just left her place as soon as I had everything loaded up again, around 2.30ish.
The drive to Kingston, Idaho was a joy. Beautiful fall colours blazing golden and a lot of wind. Our destination was the home of my friend Edda’s parents, who originally served my family baked oatmeal back in 1990.
We arrived at their home safely and Mr Pine Nut read GooGoo book after book while I visited Edda’s mom. Her dad came home after a while and he and Mr Pine Nut talked it up. Edda’s brother’s family were there for supper as well. There was butternut lasagna, salad, fresh bread of amazingness, and for dessert, Royal Bumper Degrees.
What is a Royal Bumper Degree, you ask? Pull up a chair!
Some time back, a gentleman named Henry Neff lived on the old family farm with his brother and sister. They were all unmarried and Edda’s grandfather would always go visit Henry when in the area. They would sit on the porch and chat for a long time, and then Henry would say, “Time for a Royal Bumper Degree!” So they’d all go inside and have a Royal Bumper Degree.
It was vanilla ice cream with Royal Crown Cola poured on top. You can really use any carbonated beverage. My introduction to the RBD was with 7-Up. I remember this largely because Edda and I took the empty 7-Up bottles and made dolls out of them. (Long story for another time.) This time I had an RBD with ginger ale. It was amazing.
We put the Very Tired Girls to bed about 8.30 and then continued to visit upstairs until 11.15ish and went to bed.
There is so much security in constants. For 23 years this house has been a comfortable and safe haven for me, and while things about it have gradually changed over the years, more has remained the same. I love being able to come here. I just wished I didn’t have to leave so soon.