Friday, February 13, 2009

Mt. Hood Photojournalism

I rarely post photos of current life events. Here is a somewhat photojournalistic journey through our Valentine's Day Getaway to Mt. Hood.
Madelyn packs her suitcase full of the necessities for two nights with Grandma. Apparently, she wasn't in the mood for pants at the time.
When we arrived at Cooper Spur Mountain Resort at about 4:30pm, it was snowing. Good news for the ski resort a few miles up the hill which we planned to patronize for the next two days. It took us a few minutes to locate the resort office, which closed at 4:00. An envelope with our name on it was clipped to the bulletin board outside their door. There was no key inside, just directions to our condo. And while the envelope had once been sealed, it had very obviously been ripped open before we found it. Curious.

The mysteriously opened envelope containing no room key
We hoped (and simultaneously feared) that they had a system of leaving the key inside the unlocked lodgings. We drove to our lodge condo and found our hopes to be false. The door was locked and bolted. It's a small resort, and practically deserted mid-week. We decided to drive back to the office, clinging to the optimism that perhaps we had missed something there, or the key had inadvertently fallen out of the open envelope, or it was pinned to the cat's collar. Something like that.

As we drove back toward the main office, a red Jeep emerged from a parking area designated as "employees only." It was a miracle. We flagged them down, and Yvonne, the assistant manager, returned to the office to help us. She found our key in a back room somewhere, and then in her thick Hispanic accent offered us a free box of firewood for the "eencohnveenyen." Inconvenience now, sure. But what if we had missed her exit? A few extra moments lingering at our locked door or a more hasty retreat on her part would have left us stranded in the snow. Yvonne even mentioned that she came back to the office because she had left her cell phone inside.

The weird part is, she never mentioned why the key wasn't inside the envelope, or what mistake led to her having to find it in a back room. I need closure on this point.
Our complimentary five-dollar box of firewood, with appropriately heart-shaped log
The condo itself was rustic and comfortable. Not fancy, but not entirely falling apart.
There was, however, no dishwasher. And the oven was just for looks. There were TWO small fridges though.
Little nuisances like a faulty toilet handle were not enough to ruin the vacation or make me not want to go back.
Playing games is a staple component of any relaxing vacation.
The Directions Nazi (that's me) gets her read on amidst impatient observers
Diana's Lucky Leprechaun Yahtzee Dance

Kristen and Randy Canastafy it up

Snack Basket. Most of the good stuff appears to be buried.
Diana, Gary, and I snowboarded Tuesday and Wednesday. Randy stayed back and studied for his Master's program, uninterested in risking an injury that would prevent him from bringing home the bacon. As divulged last week, I am a skier-turned-snowboarder. I tried boarding a couple of years ago, and sensed, in spite of my novice ability, that I would be more comfortable on a board than skis. I've only been able to go a couple of times each season, which is a huge bummer. But this year (thanks partly to my mom's birthday gift to Gary) we purchased Mt. Hood Meadows' "Three Time Learn to Ski/Snowboard Package." This is a disgustingly good deal: $99 for three days, each of which includes a lift ticket, 2-hour lesson, and rentals. Now, the first two days it's the bunny slope only, which for a true beginner is fine. Gary learned fast when we went for our first day in January, and I had a few times under my belt, so we upgraded to a full-mountain ticket for our 2nd day (the days don't have to be consecutive). In case you're not familiar with ski resorts, a regular lift ticket is around $59 at Meadows. They have a lift ticket and rental package (one day) for $79, and a group lesson would be another $60. So you can see that this is a spectacular deal. Until we get our own equipment, anyway.
We were lucky to get the first big snow in over a month!
Sisters on a VERY cold and snowy day at Mt. Hood.
Handsome Husband poses GQ-style in the perfect snow conditions

What a fun way to celebrate with my Valentine
Kristen rips up the slope (ha)
Gary is a natural

Three snow bunnies

The four of us nearly polished off a 42-oz. bag of peanut M&M's in two days. And that is far from the only thing we devoured.


Bridget said...

OK, so I read "Valentine's Day getaway" to mean "just Kristen and Gary," so I was reeeeeally confused when the first picture of Randy by the stove popped up. I was thinking, "Wow, Gary really doesn't look like himself when he's cooking."

Then I continued reading and it all made sense. It looks like fun! And it's a nice compliment to your Flashback Friday last week.

Do you have any review of the Twilight books coming?

Kristen said...

Wouldn't you like to know...

The Kings said...

I was the same!!! I saw Diana's husband and had no idea what was going on for a sec! So cool to see pics of Diana too. Looks like fun.

Bridget said...

Yes. Yes I would.

Jennifer said...

I read Madelyn's blog first, so I was not confused to see Randy in the first picture. :)

This sounds like so much fun! I'm glad you're enjoying snowboarding! Thanks for posting pictures of what is going on in your life (and not just Madelyn's life). I enjoyed them!


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