Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Our ten-year old

This past weekend we celebrated Kate's birthday.  Sunday night at 11:43pm, she turned ten! 

Kate is our over-achiever.  She is, by far, the most responsible person in our household.  She and I share similar personalities, only she's smarter, sweeter, and way cuter!  I love this girl so much it hurts.

Here are some pictures of our family celebration.

the beautiful birthday girl!

floating candles with red-bud branches
pictures of Kate through the years

Emma and Malachi


Connie, Nic and Malachi, my mom and Bill

Papa Peter helping Kate with her dinner

my dad and sis

my mom

Wesley - check out that smile!

Kate and her best friend, Ava - opening presents

the whole pile of cousins!

Natalie - another winning smile

Natalie wanted my dad to take her picture - check out those boots!

trying on her new outfits!

my parents bought her a new bike - she loves it!

Josh, Nana Putz, and Jess

We had a great time celebrating Kate!  Isn't that what birthdays are all about?

Still Here

Just a quick note to let you know that we're still here!

Here was last night's dinner.

meat loaf, mashed potatoes, green beans

Be back soon!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Come along for the ride (part two)

Our trip through Arizona was, in a word, windy.  I'm not quite sure what the rental company will say about our car - it looks a little "sandblasted".  It really was a beautiful trip, though.  Apparently the winds get very strong when a cold front is blowing into the region.  We seemed to travel through many Native American reservations, schools, and neighborhoods.  While starkly beautiful, I imagine it takes a hearty soul to live in the desert regions of northern Arizona.  Unfortunately, all of the roadside Native American craft stands were closed because of high winds.  We did get to sample the fry bread, though!

The pure expansiveness of this region of our country is hard to fathom. 

this might be one of my favorite pictures of our whole trip

dust as far as the eye can see

more dust - and open highways

I didn't even realize this church was in the foreground until I downloaded the pictures

dust-storms make for gorgeous sunsets

we spotted this elk herd outside of Flagstaff, AZ

we ate in a kitschy place in Sedona - and yes, I was that tired!

Rob wanted to capture the cheesy cowboy mural

my dinner - a bison burger and cowboy beans
I can't wait to show you our pictures of Sedona!  Even though I'd visited before (on a family vacation), the views were stunning.  We were able to enjoy some down-time in our hill-top hotel, and then thoroughly enjoyed hiking outside of town.

Come along for the ride (part one)

I decided to post some of the scenery we captured from our road-trip yesterday.  We left Colorado Springs about 6:20am and arrived in Sedona, AZ last night at 7:00pm.  We traveled across plains, mountains, desert, and arrived in the beautiful red rock formations of Sedona. 

leaving Colorado Springs - heading into the mountains

are you proud, Shay - I waited till 8:20am!

gorgeous and winding mountain passes

a coyote
lunch in Cortez, CO - "Farm"

my lunch - zucchini fritters and french onion soup

Rob's lunch - burger and fries

entering the "typical" southwest landscape

we stopped at the four corners monument - I was "in" AZ, CO,UT,NM

Navajo fry bread - very yummy!

honey topping - the kids would have loved this!
This was about halfway - our total trip was a little more than 12 hours.  We really loved driving - it was fun to see the changing climates and landscapes.  Stay tuned for our travel through Arizona - we traveled through major winds, blowing sand, and finally arrived in Sedona.  Our first stop was the rooftop hot tub.  Gorgeous stars, an almost full moon and relief for travel-weary muscles! (and there are no pictures, sorry!) 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Garden of the Gods

Here are some of the sights from our day in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

my hiking shoes :)

our view while hiking in the Garden of the Gods

my friend, Jess and her dog, Shelby

another view
our lunch - I totally didn't know Rob was going to be capturing my face!

the menu at our little hole in the wall mexican restaurant - yum

Rob had the beef taco and cheese enchilada - I had the chiles rellenos