Saturday, July 31, 2010

Durango Fish Hatchery

Saturday we took a drive up to Durango. We didn't do our usual horseback riding adventure, but Heather still wanted to go to the little town and do our usual stroll down main street. She loves shopping in the little shops. I don't know who she gets that from?

We visited the Fish Hatchery first where the kids got to see the long rows of trout tanks. There were fish of many sizes all grouped together, and the kids got to feed them.

There was a wildlife museum on the premises, so we toured that as well. It was neat to see the stuffed animals as well as the pelts. They were very diligent about telling us how they acquired each of the animals. This bear was hit and killed by a car. In light of the recent bear attacks, it was surreal to stand next to something so life-like.

After lunch, shopping and more picture taking for the girls' portraits, we visited the railroad museum. The kids love going into the cars they have set up to explore.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Aztec Ruins & The Animas River

We headed out to the Native American ruins in Aztec, New Mexico. The tribal people were not truly Aztec, but they are not sure which tribes moved through here. There is evidence of the Chaco Indians (south of here) and those at Mesa Verde (north of here). It may possibly have been half way point for travel. No one knows for sure, but the structures date back to 1200.

At the end of the tour, the kids earned their Jr. Ranger badges after filling out a questionaire about the indigenous peoples. They were sworn in by the park ranger.

Later on...

We dropped my car off to see what was up with the air conditioning and headed to the Animas River near Michelle's house. The kids always have fun playing and pretending in the cool water.

As we left the area, we stopped at some fun water fountains. The weather has been warm and muggy so the water was refreshing.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Shopping Day!

Thursday was deemed "shopping day" (don't worry honey, I didn't spend a lot). Michelle and I love to do little shopping trips together when we visit each other. We each have stores that the other doesn't, so it's quite fun. Except when you're short on funds, which we both are right now. It was still fun to go and browse, and I managed to find a couple of gems.

Real Deals is a discount decor store that is only open on Thursdays and Saturdays. They have beautiful furniture and accessories (if you've seen my phone table in the kitchen, that was a Real Deals deal).

All of my out-of-state friends know about Hobby Lobby, but we Californians are clueless unless we've traveled elsewhere. This is like Michael's except better priced, and the sales are amazing!

Okay, so I do have Target in CA, but it's still fun to go there with my sis, and we needed a few things anyway so it was a necessary shopping trip (tee, hee).

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

On the road...

Wednesday was travel day for us. We left Aunt Kathy and Uncle Chuck's around 10:00 a.m. Before leaving, the kids got in some more MarioKart time on their DSi's. We also took a few photos of Aunt Kathy and Uncle Chuck in front of Aunt Kathy's "high-country garden." It looked fabulous!

Five hours after departure, we were in Farmington, NM. This photo is one we took in Gallup. We worried that we were driving right into this storm, but we ended up driving just west of it. Whew!

Gavin was waiting for us to pull in, and after a tour of the new house, the kids got started on their first activity. The girls totally loved shooting real arrows with real bows! They both did pretty good.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Favorite Things - Vernon, AZ

The girls got to do some of their favorite things while in Vernon. Here they are in no particular order...

1. Quad rides
Uncle Chuck and Jenna, Kasey and Heather. Jenna drove by herself too!

2. Jacuzzi tub bath

3. S'mores!
Uncle Chuck will usually build a bonfire, but we bbq'd our marshmallows this time due to the rain. Aunt Kathy found these ginormous ones for us!

4. Hanging with the cousins
Cole had a DS game that all 4 kids could play. How fun is that?

6. Fort Apache playhouse
This playhouse was moved to Aunt Kathy and Uncle Chuck's backyard, and the kids have tons of fun in it!

7. Swinging
Nothing beats swinging in the mountains.

9. New hammock!
A fun treat that was new this year.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Aunt Kathy and Uncle Chuck

Day one in Vernon was pretty cool with periods of rain. Heather found the dogs and was in Heaven. She literally played with them all day. Joanna, Kasey and Cole arrived in the late morning and made up fun games to play that included all the dogs (they brought theirs with them from the valley).

The kids had a fun picnic outside.

Later in the day the rains came. I don't mind the cooler weather and the rain. It's refreshing and pretty to watch because you can see for miles.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Road to Arizona

We took off on Sunday morning to make the drive to Northern Arizona. Normally the drive over is uneventful, but the rain made some beautiful rainbows this time. The girls have never seen a complete rainbow that touched the ground, so this was pretty special.

This one started to be a double rainbow

Here it went end to end, but all I had was a camera phone.

We had to jump out and get a pic in Holbrook, AZ since we know some real-life Holbrooks.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

AZ Family Visits!

Mike, Joanna, Kasey and Cole made a last minute trip to CA to escape the AZ heat. We were so happy to have them visit us! On Friday they went to Knott's Berry Farm, and then we joined them for our first ever dinner at a Teppanyaki restaurant in Huntington Beach. That was so exciting for the kids! Saturday was a beach day which was very enjoyable. Jo said the sun feels good here as opposed to the intense heat it radiates in AZ. We had such a great visit with them! Hey all you AZ family--come on over anytime! We miss you!!!

(The speck of white at the top of this pic is the rice Jo is trying to catch)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Ballet Hippie

Friday while our family was at Knott's, we did some closet and drawer clean out. Jenna found things she didn't know she had, or hadn't been able to find. She came out to model her finds. She explained that she was a "ballet-hippie-teenager-rock start- timer (the watch)-wierdo." Gotta love it.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Laundromat Fun

The dryer is making odd noises, and we thought it best to run all the laundry to the laundromat today. As I packed up our things, I made sure the girls each had a book and something electronic to entertain them for two hours. Who knew that we'd never crack open the books or have any need for the electronic gizmo? Not I!

Things one can do at the laundromat to entertain oneself:

1. Put quarters into the slots for mom (Jenna did the washers and Heather did the dryers)

2. Watch front loading machine fill with water and soap bubbles.

3. Go from washer to washer to note the time left and which wash cycle would finish first, second, third, etc.

4. Watch your reflection in front loading washer during spin cycle and make "wooo" noises pretending you are actually the one spinning.

I found watching the girls more entertaining than my own book. It was really cute. They helped sort some socks and underwear after all the drying was done too. What an unexpected, fun time they had today!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Birthday Girl #11

Today was Heather's 11th birthday! We normally have a party each year for her, however, this year it will be postponed due to our water leak issue. If the office furniture and contents weren't dispersed throughout our small house, we could have people over. So, today Heather had a day of favorite things.

Favorite Thing #1 - Waffles for breakfast

Favorite Thing #2 Swimming
The Hanson's pool with Lauren, Rachel, Sarah, Jenna and Caleb

Favorite Thing #3 - Dinner at Corner Bakery

Favorite Thing #4 - A bow and arrow set from Grandpa!

Favorite Things #5 and #6 - Going to a movie of her choice with friends

Happy birthday to our sweet, sweet, wonderful baby girl! You are the absolute JOY of our lives, and we are so, so blessed to be your parents! Thank you for being such an absolutely awesome daughter. WE LOVE YOU!