Sunday, January 22, 2017

Cow Fun in Laughlin

When in Rome, do as the Romans do.

That was our philosophy when we went to our first big penning and sorting show to see my dad's software in action. We dressed the kids in their western wear and put up with the smell like it was no big deal (that is, until later in our hotel room when our clothes still reeked... then we had to quarantine them in a plastic bag).

I think this girl fit in best.

The horses inspired some beautiful art.

I know I shouldn't eat a Navajo taco more than once a year at the fair, but they're just so good!

Soon the kids were bored with the cow sorting, so I checked Trip Advisor to see what fun things there are to do in Laughlin. Turns out, if you're not there to gamble or do water sports, the answer is, "Not much." But we did get to stop by and see these crazy labyrinths someone had so painstakingly created.

Really bizarre, but somehow therapeutic.

This one was the king of them all.

Next, we headed to the river walk behind the casinos. After finally finding a parking spot in the crowded parking garages, we walked down to find this weird scene on the bottom level. Cat haven?

It was sunset by then, and we enjoyed gazing at the Arizona mountains bathed in warm light.

This was a cool casino.

These telescopes are irresistible to my kids.

So ended the one beautiful day in a weekend of rain and a successful run for the software.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Date Night Shoot Out

For Christmas, Russ got me a Groupon for Ted's Shooting Range so I could practice with my gun. Secretly, it was also a gift for him because he wanted to try out some guns before buying them. I guess I'm cool with that.

He looks so cute while reloading!

I hate clowns, so that is why I chose this for target practice.

A few more targets before we go.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Cowboy Room

The kid wanted red. Red walls. Four red walls in a little tiny room. Why not blue, I wondered, or even brown? But who am I to argue? Yeah, I was nervous. It can only end badly, I thought. Still, I carried on and tried a few samples.

My friends laughed when I showed them the first sample.

I wiped away my tears and thought, maybe it'll be fine. Then my friends really laughed when they saw this bright red room as seen from the hallway.

Incidentally, I could not stop singing, "Painting the bedroom red, we're painting the bedroom red!" (you know, like the song from Alice in Wonderland). I also could not stop thinking of the little boy in The Shining... red room, red room, red room. Maybe I was high on paint fumes? In the end, it all turned out fine, and I loved it!

So cute!

Proposal on the Mount

The first Saturday of the year, we were out hiking in San Diego with cousins.

The Ramona Overlook.

We hiked the drone up there to get a bird's eye view.

Hello up there!

Iron Mountain is the place where Russ proposed to me on the night of March 22, 2001. For some reason I wasn't afraid of every little noise I heard that night. Sitting alone on a mountain looking out over the city lights is very romantic, and he could not have chosen a better place to get my heart beating the way it did that night. He was such a sport to re-enact the whole scene, including the part where he dropped the ring in the dirt.

YES! I'd do it all over again!

This tunnel of trees is a cool way to begin and end the hike.

Friday, January 6, 2017


Remember those Legoland season passes the kids got for Christmas? What better time to use them than during the first week of January when they were still out of school? Okay, there might be a slightly better time. I thought everyone would be back in school by then, but apparently not. We definitely waited in line for a while... so we took some selfies!

For some reason, the kids always want to go straight for the cars. It was still morning, so all the pictures were backlit... trust me, she's got a big ol' smile on her face!

I kept getting my finger in the carousel pictures, so when I finally got it right, Paige was so over it.

I took way more selfies than necessary on the leaf boats. One of these days, I'm just going to let the kids actually look at the Lego sculptures on that ride all the way through.

He didn't even look at the camera anymore after a while. Ha ha! Well, we went twice to make up for it.

There were huge snowstorms and cold weather in much of the country that weekend. I felt like we were a world away.

Ready to check out the Ninjago ride for the first time.

I waited a very long time for a lot of kids on a field trip to get out of the way so I could get this shot. Wahoo! Kind of... it was really slow and short compared to the Euroslide at the fair. Notice how they aren't blurs, even in the dim light.

One last ride before closing time. Why did we save the coldest one for when the sun was going down?

I was so nervous every time we went past the water cannons, but they never got us. Yay!

Last but not least, it was build time.

They all raced the cars they built and got a ribbon. It was an awesome day!