Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Vacation photos

Snazzy title, eh? Sorry I missed posting some random facts yesterday, but was busy shrinking and uploading photos for this particular post, and doing a huge amount of baking. Got rave reviews on my dairy-free pineapple right-side up cake today, as well as my cinnamon rolls, so it was worth it.

Before I show the photos, and you all fall asleep, I'd like to mention that my vacation was made a lot nicer by a few comforts of home. I brought along Carrie's Richly Almond hand cream, and it kept me hydrated in the dry, dry south. I also brought along Joanna's Road Wash (Champagne scent), which helped me feel like a million bucks in the shower every morning when I had to drag my sorry butt out of yet another motel. And then, I had Trisha's yummy Fresh Snow soap in my luggage to keep me smelling nice as I lived out of the suitcase for 2 weeks (I only wish I had remembered to do it for the boys who are pretty stinky these days).

So, on to the trip. We stopped in a number of places on our two week trip to the West Coast, many of which are in the South-West canyons area. One of the first major stops was at Colorado National Monument. This first photo is of a stop there called "Balanced Rock", and you can see why:The view from one of our hikes at CO National Monument:Next, we went to Arches National Park:As you can see, the weather was wonderful. In fact, it was so hot, we could wear shorts, and it was so sunny, I got sun-burnt on my hands (I put sunscreen all over myself except the back of my hands).After Arches, we hit Capitol Reef National Park, which turned out to be one of the best places we visited:And this was the magnificent view from our motel balcony at Capitol Reef:On our way out of Capitol Reef, we made an unplanned stop at Red Canyon; you can see why it's called that:Bryce Canyon (which is not technically a canyon) is one of the places dh and I have always wanted to go back to. There was still snow on the ground, and some steeper trails were too slick to traverse, but we did the Navajo Loop trail and it was a good hike. Ds#1 and I still have red mud on our shoes from that hike.Deep inside Navajo Loop trail:LEGOland...the highlight of the trip for the boys. It turned out to be a nice visit, even though we're not amusement park types. It's a more manageable size than Disneyland (which we won't go to for various reasons), and, besides, we've been a family of LEGO-lovers for decades now. Bionicles are ds#1's favorite LEGO products:My favorite part of LEGOland was Miniland. Dh claims I have a Godzilla complex and just want to stomp all over these little things, but I think it's more than that. I've always wanted a perfect dollhouse and this stuff just feeds that desire:Made a quick stop at Hoover Dam. We also hadn't really planned on this stop, but as there was a storm brewing, and we were trying to stall a bit to let the storm out-pace us, we decided to spend some time here. The sheer enormity of this contraption is mind-boggling, and I'm used to thinking about the sheer enormity of outer space:One of our last stops was at Petrified Forest (which had never been a forest, just like Bryce is not a canyon). Apparently, people steal one ton of rocks from there every month so that it no longer is as breathtaking as it once was. That's both sad and infuriating.We got a tour of some petroglyphs at Petrified Forest from a ranger:Well, that's all, folks. Those of you who are my Facebook friends have seen the other photos I've posted. :) Please e-mail me if you'd like to be my FB friend!

"He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home." ~ Johann von Goethe