S/V Hello World's Travel Log

thanksgiving supernova

Since Christy and I are likely going to be gone for the next few Thanksgivings on our boat, my family decided to do a special Thanksgiving this year. We rented an Environmental Learning Center from Washington State Parks. Christy's family flew out from Connecticut, Maryland and Minnesota to join us. They are all silly, funny, warm and easy going. I instantly knew they'd get along well with my family. We also invited our boat family - Fisher and Kim to join in the mayhem. A stupid good time was had by all.

Here's some highlights of the four day weekend:

Best Place to Host a Huge Thanksgiving

Brooks Memorial State Park south of Yakima, WA. Renting this place is like renting your very own summer camp. But for cheap. For 25 people over 4 nights, we paid under $1000. Less than $10/person/night. There's one main lodge with a commercial kitchen and huge dining hall. You sleep in one of the 7 satellite cabins rocking the bunk beds.

This was our kitchen.

They had an amphitheater with a big fire pit which the rangers stocked with firewood.

This was our gathering place around the fire at one end of the great hall.

Our play field out front.

Best Activity Marathon

Thanksgiving day:

  • Kickball - 2 hours

  • Dodgeball - 1 hour

  • Sproutball (like dodgeball only without all the rules and restraint) - 1 hour

I still can't walk right.

Best Red-neck-ization of a Real Game

Hillbilly Bocce
Given our family roots in the wilds of Montana and Idaho, we turned a once respectable game of Bocce into a tromp through the forest - avoiding beaver dams, downed trees and cow poop.

Best Acoustic Rendition of Margaritaville

Matt Landgraf, ladies and gentlemen. McKenzie's (Christy's sister) boyfriend has buckets of talent strumming the gee-tahr and treated us to our private concert. We would just shout out songs and he'd play them. It was like having your own live MP3 player. An MP3 player powered by whiskey.

Best Food Ever (ever, I tells ya)

Scalloped Tomatoes
Every year, my sister Nikki and I fight over this bubbling concoction of cheese and tomatoes. This year, the battle was waged through three days of leftovers. She would hide them in the fridge. When she pulled them out to microwave them, I would tackle her.

Activity Most Likely to Rupture My Hamstring

As if I wasn't sore enough from kickball, dodgeball, sproutball, and capture the flag, we added football to the mix.

Darin about to go Deacon Jones on Jeff's ass.

Me about to overthrow my receiver.

Sadie hiking the ball to Dustin.

Danni toting the rock.

I'm gonna barf.

Rachel taking the snap.

Christy and Penny getting into it.

Penny being restrained while Danni throws some trash talk her way.

Danni and Gavin getting dangerously close to drawing an Excessive Celebration penalty.

Best Quote of the Weekend

Overheard whilst answering a Trivial Pursuit question: What did [some person] grow for a record 24 inches measured tip to tip?

Christy's mom, Anne: "I'll give you a hint: every man at this table has one."

My 19 year old niece, Jenna: [GASP!!!!]

(The real answer we were looking for was moustache. Why? What did you think she was talking about?)

Best Card Game Ever (ever, I tells ya)

My sisters, Nikki and Tammy, brother-in-law Jeff and Christy's dad, Carl, settled in for a long afternoon of pinochle. If any of you all play with us in the future, know this: we cheat.

Christy's dad Carl, my sister Nikki, my mom Flory, my sister Tammy and me.

Most Talented Dancer

How could you possibly choose? This was clearly a gifted group of white people.

We had such an incredible time this weekend. It was fantastic to watch our families mingle. Christy and I are so very grateful for the families we have. So to our families (including our boat family!), we say thank you. And we love you very much.

Photos uploaded here.

45°56'35.30"N 120°40'10.28"W

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White Cloud said...

We had a GREAT time with ya'll, although I'm STILL sore from capture the flag and flag football, and bocce, and...
I was honored to spend time with your families. A crazy bunch and I felt like I fit right in! Can't wait to see some of them in Mexico.

JT said...

Fisher bought a bocce set the minute we got back to Seattle and we immediately went to play hillbilly bocce at Golden Gardens! But most of all... I miss having meals ready and waiting for me. What time is breakfast on HW?

Anonymous said...

It was a great time! Christy...your family is awesome and it was great spending time with them! Your summery of the weekend here is great...except one thing. It appears you used this public forum to claim victory over the tomatoes, so I just wanted to add: Those tomatoes were hidden goooood, and I had I wanted them they would have been mine!!!! Remember Baby Jesus... I live less than a mile from her house and I have a key!!!! Oh yeah...and you will be in the middle of an ocean for the next few years!!!!! Love you guys!

Lisa K. said...

Sounds like a great time! Wish we could have been there (as your wacky ex-pat "family", of course). I like a mean game of kickball myself.

Love you guys.

Jason said...

Lis, we would have loved to have you guys there! You guys would have had a blast and we would have enjoyed being regaled with tales of Japanese head injuries and mochi!