Join Janet on her adventures as a designer, writer, maker, and farmer in montana. no two days are ever the same. you might even see a bear or two.

Mom's Car Delivery Service

Mom's Car Delivery Service

After Dad’s Garage replaced the water pump in DD#2’s Jetta, I drove it around for a few days to make sure nothing else would break. Then we had to get it back to her and retrieve the police cruiser. Fortunately, I already had a trip to Portland on the schedule for a denominational board meeting. We also needed to get DD#1’s snow tires to her, but she has nowhere to keep them in her apartment in Seattle. I came up with a plan: I would drive the Jetta to Portland with the snow tires loaded in the back. DD#1 and her boyfriend would spend the weekend at the boyfriend’s parents’ house and meet me there on Saturday after the board meeting. His parents live on the Olympic Peninsula, about a four-hour drive from Portland. I would spend the night there, leave the snow tires with them, then take the ferry across Puget Sound Sunday morning and meet DD#2 in Seattle. We’d exchange cars, I’d see if she needed anything else, and then I would drive the police cruiser home on Tuesday.

My trips always seem to have a lot of moving parts. I’ve spent the last nine years schlepping kids’ belongings around the Pacific Northwest, though, so I have lots of experience in this department. The drive to Portland is about as long as the drive to Seattle. I decided to break it up by driving to Spokane on Thursday and spending the night there. Our board meeting wasn’t scheduled to start until 1 p.m. on Friday. That gave me plenty of time to do the second leg of the Portland drive Friday morning and spend Thursday in Spokane. I had a huge list of things to get.

You would think that with all the growth in Kalispell—and all the new retail that is opening up—it would be easy to find what I need here. Not so. I need a new bra. The one store that carried the brand I prefer closed last year, so I cannot buy one locally. I needed shampoo and conditioner. And tea. And a particular line of fabric. I knew all of these things could be had in Spokane with relatively little effort. I arrived there mid-morning and proceeded to attack my list. I got most of what I needed and planned to pick up the rest in Seattle. I also took myself to my favorite Indian restaurant for lunch and to the Nordstrom cafe for dinner before heading to the hotel.

[You’ll see some of the treasures I found in upcoming blog posts, no doubt.]

I had an uneventful drive to Portland on Friday morning, swinging by the hotel first to pick up my fellow board member and roommate for that evening, Jan. Jan lives in Spokane but had flown over to Portland for the meeting. We found our way to Portland Mennonite Church and settled in for our meeting.

Our pastor, Jeryl, is the board moderator. He knows how to run meetings so they are long on productivity and short on wheel-spinning. We got a lot done on Friday afternoon and evening with a break for dinner at another Indian restaurant (yay!), then met again for a few hours on Saturday morning. I said goodbye at lunch and loaded up the Jetta for the trip up to the boyfriend’s parents’ house. I’ve been there before but had come in from Seattle last time instead of up from Portland. This route took me almost straight up the Olympic Peninsula along the Hood Canal. It truly is a beautiful part of the country.

The boyfriend’s mom had a wonderful hot dinner waiting, with homemade apple crisp, vanilla ice cream, and freshly whipped cream for dessert. (I reported this to the husband when I called to check in. There was a short pause, and then he said, “I had a frozen pizza.”) She is a great cook. I excel at cooking in mass quantities, but I wouldn’t call myself a gourmet.

The following morning, after a breakfast of oatmeal with apple crisp on top, eggs, and bacon, I headed to the Kingston ferry terminal. I think the last time I took a car ferry ride was when I was little and we went to Kelly’s Island—in Lake Erie—for vacation with my father’s side of the family. As it was early yet, I didn’t have a lot of traffic to contend with. DD#1 tells me that the ferry terminal gets really congested on Sunday afternoons when everyone is trying to get back to the city. I was directed to get in line, where I waited for about 20 minutes before they loaded the ferry. Once aboard, I locked the car and went upstairs to look around.

This was my view from inside:


I did not take pictures from the deck as it was very windy and very rainy. I was looking out the window directly at Seattle, about eight miles away across the sound, but it was so socked in that the shoreline was mostly obscured.

I love boats. I would love to take another Alaskan cruise some time. My friend Tera and I have kicked around the idea. We like to travel together and she’s never done an Alaskan cruise. Maybe next summer.

The trip to Edmonds lasted about half an hour. I had been loaded on at the front, so I was the third car off the ferry. This is the ferry terminal in Edmonds:


I took this picture Monday morning. The AirBNB where I stayed was in Edmonds.

[I sometimes wish I could wear a GoPro and film some of these trips. I see and do so many fun things, but I am awful about remembering to take pictures.]

After getting off the ferry, I met up with DD#2 at the Nordstrom store where she is working, transferred everything from the Jetta to the police cruiser and vice versa, then took her to dinner.

She wasn’t scheduled to work until after lunch on Monday, so she picked me up Monday morning and drove me over to see the house where she will be living. She has spent the summer living with her friend at her friend’s mom’s house, but that was only ever intended to be a temporary setup. The trick was going to be finding something affordable in a ridiculously overpriced housing market. She outdid herself. She will be sharing a house with three other recent Gonzaga graduates, all girls that she knows from her study abroad semester in Florence two years ago. The rent is reasonable, it’s a decent neighborhood, and in a bit of serendipity, she will be just a few blocks from Seattle Mennonite Church. I pointed that out to her and noted that it wouldn’t hurt her to go some Sunday morning and introduce herself and get plugged into that community. She often works on Sundays, but she said she would try to visit on a Sunday she wasn’t scheduled. She’s about 15 minutes north of her sister’s apartment and about a 20-minute drive from work.

Although I did not get to watch the Browns play on Monday Night Football, I was able to listen to the game on my phone—I prefer listening to Doug Dieken and Jim Donovan, the local announcers on Cleveland Browns Radio anyway—and went to sleep pleased that they played like an actual football team instead of the group of amateurs that showed up the previous Sunday. The Steelers are 0-2 and the Browns are 1-1 and who ever thought that would happen?

I had an uneventful drive home yesterday, stopping only to get gas and a bite to eat. I’ve got a lot of catching up to do today.

Winding Down Into Fall

Winding Down Into Fall