Friday, December 2, 2011

Road Trip.

I've been rather shady in the last month because of a large amount of Christmas shopping, packing, and traveling (again). My latest travels included Mom flying out to San Diego to ride back to Louisiana with Gray, Fletch, and I. Naturally we went a little out of the way to see some extra sights, but we made the trip in 5 not totally full days.
Gray and Fletch on the road.
I picked Mom up from the airport around 5pm on our first day of travels. Naturally I was about 20 minutes late to the airport because I was trying to pack for 2 months away (including Christmas gifts) PLUS get the house clean enough for guests. Otherwise the trip went smoothly. We drove into Arizona before stopping for the night. We saw the London Bridge in Lake Havasu City then were off to the next thing on the list. 
The London Bridge. Lake Havasu, AZ. 
We drove along Route 66 for a while so Mom could see some of little towns along the way. Including lunch in Kingman, AZ right across the street from this HUGE steam engine. Gray thought it was one of the coolest things on the trip easily. 

We made it to the Grand Canyon around dark, so we had dinner and went back to the hotel. It was pretty cold, but luckily there wasn't a blizzard like our last trip to the Grand Canyon! This may be the first picture that Gray has ever deliberately looked at the camera and smiled. It only too 2.5 years... 

Fletch was super excited about getting out of the car for some sightseeing!
He wasn't as thrilled with Gray holding the leash...

We decided to head north toward Monument Valley after leaving the Grand Canyon. We saw some wild horses, lots of beautiful scenery, and a little place where John Wayne stated multiple times while filming movies in the area. We shared some green chili soup and some Indian fry bread for a quick snack at Goulding's (I LOVE southwest food!), then headed north toward Moab! 

We weren't originally going to go this far north because Mom had to be back home within a certain number of days. We made good time (and I think she secretly wanted to see more awesome National Parks) and decided to add a few miles to the trip and see Arches National Park. Arches is a great park, with lots of different landscapes to see. There are tons of walking trails for visitors to use, but with Gray we decided it was best to stay close to the car. Plus I left the Bob stroller at home (for space concerns) and many are too long/strenuous to expect a 2 year old to keep up or at the least enjoy it. Luckily the roads take you right past most of the formations, so little walking is required to hit the high points. Just outside of Arches, there are many different examples of petroglyphs and pictographs. I could have spent hours/days checking out these rock art locations, but alas we had to get back on the road after seeing a couple (and a dinosaur track). 
Flat Daddy made it to Arches NP! 
Rock Art! 
We left Moab in just enough time, because we made it to the Four Corners just as they were closing. We didn't have to pay to get in and were there with about 5 other people. They actually had to re-open the gate to let us out. We missed the Native Americans that are there with crafts, but we had already done lots of craft shopping while near the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley. I had already gotten a really fun Christmas ornament, a little piece of pottery, and some bookmarks or I may have been bitter. :) 
Gray in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado at once! 
Our last stop on the trip was the Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas. Apparently there is a lot more to this place than Cadillacs begin partial buried. This started as a representation of the evolution of the car line (like the birth and death of the tail fin). The cars are buried nose-first at an angle corresponding to the angle of the Great Pyramids of Giza. The cars have been moved and are currently on private land. The cars are preprinted white periodically, and the spray paint art is actually encouraged. I decided to Google Cadillac Ranch that day to tell mom more about it and Wikipedia had a wealth of knowledge (which is where i got that info above from). I'm a little sad we didn't have any spray paint to tag one of the cars. :) It was so windy and super cold, so I recommend a coat if you visit! My ears were burning by the time I made it back to the car, but Fletch loved running around the cars in the open field!
Cadillac Ranch! 
From Amarillo, we made it home in a few hours. It was a long trip, but we had fun seeing tons of new sights!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Winter happenings.

Here are a few recent shots of Gray. Not enough for individual blog posts, but fun in a compilation. I can't believe how much he is growing! 
Maybe it was cold in the house...
Fletch is thrilled with this arrangement.  
Playing (and singing) the guitar.  
He looks like Thing 1 in an old wig. :)
Wearing cammies and wings (on the wrong side) like Daddy!
Rain in San Diego? Gray is always mesmerized by the rain since he rarely sees it! 
Fun day out with friends at Pump it Up (a huge room full of bouncy houses)!
Playing with some of the decorations on Mom's Christmas tree (Support Our Troops theme).