Friday, April 1, 2011

Be My Guest

Spring break is here at the van der Stevejinck house. No school/work until April 11th. I'm taking advantage of the break to drive down to Portland to spend three days or so with Betty Keira and Betty Tia. I usually take my youngest son with me...but he's plenty old enough to stay home with his dad who will be at work all day.  That means I can have my pick of Betty Keira's couches. I don't mind her kids coming downstairs and waking me up - I usually get up at 4:30am - so even if they are up by 6am, I've still 'slept in'. Betty Keira and I don't count as guests in each other's houses...we're family, and our family has a sort of motto:

You get what you get,
and you don't pitch a fit.

Friday Harbor is fine, but the ride there is
I was finishing up reading A Summer Idyll this morning, and I was struck by all the work Phoebe has to do - not only extra chores, but also entertaining guests - making sure they have something to do every day (which can be way more tiring). I love the fact that she sticks to their regular breakfast schedule 7:30am...and if their guests aren't there for breakfast, too bad. 

I've occasionally had house guests that I had to entertain - I have a sort of mental list of 'Places of Interest Within 30 Miles Or So'. Here's my list (which I adapt to suit the guests):
Chuckanut Drive: Goofy name, gorgeous views.
  • Taking the ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor - but never with Betty Marcy again.
  • Browsing among the many antique stores in Snohomish.
  • Scenic Drives: Mountain Loop Highway...including a short hike to the Big Four Ice Caves (when the bridge isn't washed out), Chuckanut Drive or the North Cascades Scenic Highway.
  • Seattle - Pike Place Market, Pacific Science Center, Space Needle, Ballard Locks...etc.
  • Ferry to Bainbridge Island then a short drive to Poulsbo (a little slice of Norway).
Where do you take/send your guests?

Pike Place: Come for the fish, leave
with at least one bouquet of flowers.


  1. Portland:
    Powell's City of Books
    The Pittock Mansion
    The rose test gardens
    Washington Zoo

  2. Well, I would take the Founding Bettys to the Aaronic Priesthood site, of course. :-)

    I'll often take guests to The Sea Hag, a converted barn with arts & crafts; the owner makes fabulous soaps. If there's time, we can go to The Brackney Inn for lunch. It's a dive -- you really think a bar brawl is about to break out. But the food is divine.

    Speaking of food, we love to take people to Patsel's for brunch. Just wonderful food in an exquisite setting.

    In the winter, Elk Mountain has pretty good skiing only 20 minutes away. (It' a dinky mountain by Vermont/Utah/Colorado standards, but I'm told its runs are still pretty good.)

    There's a nice Rail Trail to walk or bike along.

    Cooperstown is not too far, nor are the Finger Lakes.

    Train enthusiasts can go to Steamtown; in the summer there's a little steam train that goes to Moscow.

  3. You didn't mention my personal favorite family motto, "No news is good news.".

    Places to take visitors:

    San Francisco Wharf
    Guaridelli Square
    Great America
    Happy Hollow (kids petting zoo & rides)
    Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
    Capitola (the good beach)
    Hicklebee's (small independent bookstore)
    Southern Lumber (the smell of exotic wood!)

    Let's go!!

  4. Kalispell, Montan
    Glacier Park,
    Flathead Lake(largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi)
    the Conrad mansion (where I was a guide)
    Community Thrift (the thrift store dearest to my heart) and The Kalispell Antique mall.
    If the Gardners are feeling generous a trip to see their buffalo herd.

  5. Betty Barbara here--
    I currently live close to Baltimore and not really close to DC. And lord knows, there are plenty of things/places to see in both cities.
    But I live closest to Ellicott City, MD and it has several must see attractions:
    lots of antique stores
    Tea on the Tiber-for fantastic tea parties
    B&O Railway station/museum
    And did I mention antique stores?
    The town is cleverly built on some very steep hills and there are lots of old, large houses to gawk at, as well as restored (and now pricey)mill worker houses. Plus several mills that have been converted into condos.
    Ruins of Patapsco Female Institute--fancy girls' school from the 1800's. Grounds used in the summer for productions of Shakespeare.
    And a number of very good restaurants.
    Good walking shoes and stamina required (all those hills, remember?)

  6. Oh my... these lists are going with me on vacation! We leave Virginia May 4th, returning on the 8th of June. We'll have driven 7,000 miles or so... Middle route out, northern route back. Looking forward to camping in the northwest!

  7. Penn State football games and Amish (not tourist) farming

  8. I would bring visitors to:
    Peggy's Cove (always on the tourist list)
    Citadel Hill
    The Dingle
    Halifax Harbour
    Pier 21
    St. Paul's Church

    On a related note, I'm going to be on vacation in Raleigh this summer - are any of the Bettys familiar with NC? I'd like some family friendly suggestions.