Friday, August 29, 2008

Travelogue chapter two

Well folks, we arrived today at about 3pm mountain time. And I was surprised by quite a few things. For one, I had expected Colorado Springs to be composed of lots of little settlements kind of like the Dayton area but it's just one big sprawling metropolis. It's going to take me a while to suss this place out, that's for sure. And then since the rocky mountains are so huge I didn't expect to actually see them up close. A distant view was more what I was expecting. Anywhere you are in Colorado Springs, you can see the mountains but if you want to get really close then you only have to drive for a few minutes. They are breathtaking and right there. Once Gary goes to work on Tuesday and I set out to explore on my own I will have to be careful to pay attention to the road instead of the view. It most definitely reminds me of the mountainous region of England that I love so much, just all on a bigger scale. I am pretty exhausted so I haven't gotten too excited yet but I think it's the beginning of a love affair.

Items of note:

- Driving through Kansas which was mostly very flat and very uninhabited, we came across a wind farm that was absolutely huge. As the turbines came into view the boys were fascinated. Spencer asked us a question if you can believe it. He asked "Why are the windmills following us?" It was quite a job explaining that we were the ones that were moving and not the turbines. They were very majestic and imposing. I think the sight was a little intimidating to him.

- Also in Kansas we came across some more motorcycle riders who were anxious to condole with Gary as he was towing the bike rather than riding it. Whilst speaking with them we got invited to a church service on the top of Pikes Peak on Sunday which is the tallest mountain around here. It was quite tempting although we have our new ward to go to. It would be hard to fit all five of us on the bike seeing as it's also a biking thing. But many prophets of old climbed mountains to speak with God. I can see how it would be conducive to worship.

- During the final hour in the car the kids were at the end of their rope. The boys decided to take their sandals off and smell each other's feet while laughing hysterically. It kept them amused but the odor was enough to make Gary and I feel nauseauted. As you can imagine, we had more than one reason to be grateful we had finally arrived.

- Our hotel space for the next two weeks has a kitchen, living room and two bedrooms. The smallest bedroom is in a loft area with the bed pushed up against the 3 and a half foot wall. The boys immediately climbed on the bed and started hanging over the wall. I heard Spencer whisper to Nathan. "Hey Nathan, jump off." Since I'm not sure that Nathan isn't silly enough to think he could do it, and he hurls himself over a 14 foot drop and breaks his neck, we have taken the small bedroom upstairs and declared it out of bounds to the children. Spencer and Nathan are now enjoying use of the master suite with attached bathroom and closet. They better enjoy it while it lasts as they will soon be taking up residence in our new basement.

Here are a couple of pictures for your enjoyment.

A moment of peace

I had no idea Colorado was colorful?

This spectacular view was so much better in real life. The way the light was coming through the clouds and illuminating the mountains.

That's all for now.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Travelogue chapter one

Well folks we are in Missouri. This is my first time and so far it's not much different from Ohio. This morning we set off early and were all very tired from yesterday's packing. I am suffering from the worst nasal congestion ever (not to flog a dead horse here as I'm sure you've all heard me complain about this before), but seriously it is bad, and so I didn't fall asleep last night until 2am. I was exhausted but we had a nice breakfast and then off we went.

Items of note:

* While we were eating breakfast, CNN was on very quietly. You couldn't hear the reporter but the headlines were appearing across the screen. I was vaguely aware that Leia was looking over at the TV. She turned to me and said "Guess what Mom, there was a porn on the playground in Tennessee." I instantly looked over at the TV and got the gist of a rather unsuitable for children news item. How grateful I am for my children's innocence - long may it last!

* As we started driving down the road Gary informed me that towing the bike on a trailer takes our gas mileage down to 15 miles per gallon on the highway when normally we can get up to 24. Bummer!

* There were motorcycles all over the place today. A 105 year Harley celebration is getting under way. Spencer was sure to remind a random rider at a rest stop that driving without a helmet is dangerous.

* Out of nowhere in the car, Spencer asked Gary a very thought provoking question. "Daddy, what would you do if a witch tried to make Mommy eat poison soup?"
That wasn't his only thought for the day. He asked "When are we going to be at Colorado?" about 50 times today as well.

* But by far the highlight of today was spending some time with our dear friends the Waylands. Tara helped plan my wedding and even made my bouquet. We hadn't seen them in about 8 years and so it was lovely to see them again. That's what's so wonderful about true friendships. No matter how long you are apart, when you get together it's as if the time in between just melts away. We ate dinner, played a game and the kids got a chance to stretch their legs and play with their gorgeous children in the back yard.

So I can hardly wait to see what tomorrow will bring. Another new state, Kansas and some more questions from Spencer no doubt. Here's hoping I can manage a few more hours of sleep tonight else I'll arrive in Colorado looking like a raccoon!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

A sight for sore eyes

I can't express how glad I was to see Mum and Dad. They're exactly the moral support I needed.

Look at that cool dude!

What're more fun than water guns and paddling pools?

Poor old Spencer always seems to end up on the naughty chair.

Mum was trying to take a picture of Leia smiling naturally. Of course she always puts on the "fake" smile. In the end who knew that all you had to do was ask her to try and look serious. First the corners of her mouth twitched.......

Then she burst out laughing......

And then Mum got this picture which I love. It's such a natural smile and she's so full of joy here. Wrapped up in a towel after an afternoon of fun with Grandma. So priceless. Life couldn't feel any better when I look at this face!