25 November 2007

My wife and I travelled to Utah for the holiday weekend. On the way there we stopped in Pocatello to see my middle sister and her husband, as they have a new house that we wanted to check out. It's a pretty nice place and we had a good visit with them.

We ate Thanksgiving dinner with my wife's brother and his in-laws. The food was good and we saw our niece for the first time. She's four months old, I think. They warned us that she's not too keen on guys, but after a few minutes of holding her she snuggled into my shoulder and went to sleep. It appears that my uncle powers are still working. She's a cute kid. We also played Apples to Apples, a card game by Out of the Box Publishing. You can see a video of how the game works at the link in the last sentence. I won't brag about who was the champion of the evening, but the Force was definitely with him.

I'd never done the shopping on the day after Thanksgiving thing before, but faced with the prospect of sitting around doing nothing while my wife went to Jo-Ann Fabrics with the girls, I decided to brave the crowds and go with her. I'm lucky I did, as there was a 50% off sale on plastic storage bins and I picked up several sets of these modular stacking bins from Snapware. As soon as my camera battery charges I'll post pictures of my Skaven army, which fits very well into two of the boxes. Even the Warhammer Slave Giant fits into the box with a bit of headroom. My wife is lucky that I came along with her as we left around 11:20. The other family members were waiting in the fabric-cutting line and didn't get out of the store until 4:30.
After we got out of there we hit up the Dragon's Keep game store and I got some Magic cards, some frivolous accessories, and the Warhammer Siege book which I believe is outdated (but it was a steal at $0.99). We also visited the Crazzy Canuck, where my wife got some Canadian candy to try out. At some point we went to Home Depot and I selected a few power tools that I need for the Tortoise Table I'm building tomorrow.
After checking into the motel, we decided to try out The Living Planet Aquarium and see what they had to look at. We both love animals so we try to go see nature exhibits whenever we can, although we still haven't been to the Boise Zoo or the Birds of Prey Center here in Idaho. The aquarium is fairly small, but there were some pretty neat animals there. I think the highlight for us was the Giant Pacific Octopus, which was very large and fun to watch. The Moray Eels and Stingrays were pretty fun as well.
After visiting the aquarium we were in the mood to eat some seafood, so went out to eat and each ordered a platter with lobster, prawns, and shrimp.
On TV we saw an episode of Man vs. Wild, a survival show on the Discovery Channel in which a guy named Bear Grylls strands himself in dangeroue survival situations and extracts himself from them. While there are articles stating that some parts of the show are not as real as they are made out to be, it still makes for some good watching and was almost enough to convince us to start up a satellite or cable television service. I'd recommend checking it out.
On Saturday morning we headed out to see Mike, Jamie, and their son Vessel. I knew Jamie in high school and we've kept in touch since then, but aside from that none of us had ever met in real life. Luckily there was no Battle Royale and we all got along without any sort of fisticuffs. We went out for pizza and talked about life and stuff. All too soon it was time to go and we got on the road for home.
Today we picked up our dogs from the kennel and they smelled awful, like they had been rolling in something terrible for four days, probably something that was not far from the truth. We had to bathe them when we got home, which is always an experience. They were tired from the vacation, so they've been asleep all day.
All in all it was a pretty good trip. It was nice to spend several days in a row with my wife, as we don't see each other all that much since we work different shifts. It was good to see my sister's new house and see the new niece on my wife's side of the family. And it was nice to see Jamie and meet her husband and their son. Now it's back to the grindstone.

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