27 June 2011

Spring Break: Wupatki National Monument

 Puebloan people had already inhabited this area and farmed its land for 400 years when the volcano erupted.  They returned a few generations later and worked the land for another 100 years before establishing homes elsewhere.  They left behind homes that ranged from single-story single-family dwellings to multilevel highrises of sandstone, limestone, and chunks of basalt.  And now, I present 10 million photos of those structures!

The obligatory sign photo:

Our "party car," as dubbed by the boys, stands waiting in the background:

Notice A2 has to do exactly what his brother does, even if it involves climbing too high for comfort (MY comfort, anyhow):

And now begins the abundant pueblo photos, notice the first monochromatic one is of A1's elicit rooftop dancing (we didn't know this was part of the restricted area!):

26 June 2011

Spring Break: Sunset Crater National Monument

We visited this 1000-foot-high volcano and were very impressed by dark cinder cones.  It was otherworldly there!

25 June 2011

Spring Break: Mojave National Preserve

Another road trip!  This was our 3rd such trip with the boys and probably the best thus far.  The boys are better than they've ever been at playing with each other and enjoying the drive.  And never mind the fact that we took this trip over 2 months ago and I'm just now posting the photos.  I had to research how to make animated GIFs--I've got the basics down, but can't figure out how to keep the quality of the image from degrading so much.

Anyway, I think one of my favorite parts was the sign to watch for tortoises crossing the road, especially after rains.  And one of my least favorite parts was the rattlesnake sighting that was too close for comfort!  All in all, though, the sand dunes, volcanic cinder cones, and Joshua tree forests make this desert a fun repeat visit for our family.

Following are photos in the van, the Mojave (arrows point to the kids off in the distance), our first of several trips to Cracker Barrel, and the boys having fun in a hotel lobby:

On playing music

I'm my teenage self when it comes to how I play my music: Loud and repetitively.  I spare the family my love of high volumes with a cordless headset, which just happens to be one of the BEST personal purchases ever, only behind my camera.  Actually, the headset also spares them from having to hear the same song over and over and over again. 

I hate to admit it, but I've been afflicted by a mild case of Bieber Fever.  Wow, that's embarrassing to admit.

Here are pics of the boys pretending to be underwater superheroes.  I'm loving summer (my least favorite season before becoming a parent).  Especially with the yummy snack foods (fresh mozzarella, basil from the yard, etc.) even if the boys prefer simpler options.

24 June 2011


Tennis appears to be more of a mental game for the boys.

Option 1: Stare down the opponent.

Option 2: Swing and miss a lot so as to throw off your opponent.

Okay, A1 seems to be a little more into it than his little brother.

But that seems the case for all racket sports.

23 June 2011

Community events

Why didn't I attend community events as a child, especially since I grew up in the same neighborhood in which the boys growing up?  Were these events nonexistent or at least a rarer phenomenon back then (probably not, I suspect they were MORE plentiful)?  Maybe my parents didn't know about them.  Did my parents know about them but did not feel welcomed--did they know about them but did not feel they were important to attend? 

We love taking the boys to these functions, grounding them in their community and running into friends and neighbors.  With all the new developments in the area, it's nice to feel like a small town again.

Our favorite of the day was the Station tour, holding cell and all!