Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Fun with Family

On Friday, after such a sleep-depriving experience, we took it easy. At my request, we rode the bus. I really miss having public transportation and I wanted to see what the Vancouver public transportation system is like. It was marvelous. We went to a spray park, where there are a whole bunch of spray nozzles spraying water in various directions, and watched Byron play in the water. Rachel and I sat there and used what brain cells we had that were active to keep an eye on Byron and to chat and catch up with each others' lives.

Then in the evening, I treated them to dinner out. I requested that we go to a place that had good food that you can't get in Tennessee. So we went to a Nepalese restaurant. I had the goat curry and it was delicious. When we got back home we had ice cream cake (left over from Rachel's Wednesday birthday) and then I gave out the gifts I had brought.

For Byron, it was a belated birthday present of a book. But he enjoyed the card so much that I need not have brought him anything else. It was one of those cards that plays music when you open it. He's really into Star Wars and this card played the Star Wars theme music. I'm not sure that he looked at the book at all, but the card was a big hit.

For Rachel, in addition to the hominy and hushpuppy mix she requested (so as to better expose her Canadian friends to her native cuisine), I brought along a cast iron skillet and a bag of cornmeal, with which to make the delicious cornbread recipe from The Joy of Cooking. Try that one if you ever want to taste some really good cornbread!

The next day, we went to the Lighthouse Park and did some hiking. It was really beautiful and I admired the big evergreen trees and all the berry-producing plants. It's really a different biome than what I am used to in the southeastern United States.

We also baked for the next day's party. Rachel made peanut pie (like pecan pie only made with peanuts) and I made lemon-poppyseed pound cake, another classic from The Joy of Cooking. (Can I just take this time to say that while I may seem like a walking advertisement for The Joy of Cooking, that is only because it is one of the world's greatest cookbooks.)

The next day, we had a party celebrating Rachel's and Byron's birthdays, in a nearby park. Rachel invited some of her friends, and I got the opportunity to meet them. I am really glad that Rachel has such nice friends to interact with. I enjoyed meeting them all and was sad to have to leave the party while it was still going strong and head for the train station to take the bus back to Seattle.

I enjoyed getting the chance to see Rachel, Scott, and Byron. I had fun playing with Byron, and was interested to see what I have to look forward to in three years when Vinny gets to be that age. We will see each other again in December, when they visit my dad, and I am looking forward to it!

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