Thursday, November 29, 2012

Origami Time

The return of our paper decorated Christmas tree, due to a destructive toddler, means that we get to create origami ornaments again. Awesome that both Vera and Keller are interested. Vera is able to handle some/most of the folding, while Keller is a great manager.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


Thanksgiving Day stroll along the Santa Barbara Harbor with Zia, Zio, and Nonni. Keller and Nonno stayed behind on turkey duty. Vera just asked me why I took so many pictures of peoples' butts. Awww...the joys of having a 6-year-old in the house.

9 people in an itty-bitty space. We made it work and had a fantastic Thanksgiving!

Zia and Zio, they are expecting a boy in April!!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Day 6 & 7: Visitor Center and Wrap-Up

Funny that it was on our last day that we went to the Visitor Center. Whoops! On the first day, we were just too excited to get to the Zion Lodge.

Crawford's Arch

Rock Slide

The Zion Lodge is amazing. It is set in the middle of the canyon with amazing views in all directions. Every morning (but one), we would get up and head to the lodge for their breakfast buffet. The kids made fans out of the staff as we were definitely one of the few families staying at the lodge at this time of year. 

Day 6: Upper Emerald Pool

To get to the Upper Emerald Fall, you have to walk through the lower. 

Up, Up, Up!

This was the last true hike of our vacation and we knew we were pushing Vera. She had already hiked 4.4 miles in the morning and this one was 2.6. She rocked it without complaining, which is HUGE.

It was a great hike to end on, the Upper Falls are amazing and it would have been sad to miss out on seeing them. 


Keller raced through the return trip and was leading our little pack the whole way. 

Day 6: Mom and Daughter Hike

On Tuesday of our trip, the entire family set off for Scout Lookout. Yes, it is listed as strenuous in the guidebook, but when J talked to the man working at the front desk he was assured that it would be a great hike for a family. The path is paved most all the way to the lookout. Scout Lookout is the resting place right before people hike to Angel's Landing. Angel's Landing is probably the best known hike of Zion. You have to use chains to climb up it, there are parts where the path is 3 feet across with sheer cliffs on either side. We never had any intention of heading to Angel's Landing, but did want to make Scout. I really wanted to see Walters Wiggles. The description is below.

At about 3/4 of the way through, Keller pooped out and was done (understandable). I went back with him to a flat area along the path while J carrying Gus and Vera made it to Scout Lookout.

On Thursday, J encouraged me to climb the trail again, because I really, really wanted to see Walters Wiggles and say that I made it to Scout Landing. Vera hopped on board as my hiking partner and we were off on a mother and daughter hike.


 It is amazingly difficult to see the switchbacks as the trail goes up the cliff face.  

 Can you see the little people?

One of our rest spots. I had a moment of hesitation that Vera wasn't going to make it and I was again going to miss the Wiggles. That said, she was awesome and rocked it up the trail with just a few rests.

Ringtail chipmunks were common throughout the part, almost as common as mule deer. 

The beginnings of Walters Wiggles.

 The view from the lookout.  

It is hard to see, but this is the start of the climb to Angel's Landing. 

So, so glad to make it to Scout Landing and also to have some quality time with Vera. All of the pictures from this trip make me realize how fast she is growing up. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Day 6: Archeology Trail

At the end of the walk is a flat plateau where it is thought that Native Americans established a living area/place where utensils and vessels were made. At some point, archeologists found pottery and other debris.

AND, then there is Keller, who kept insisting that this rock was a piece of pottery. He banged it against another rock and swore that it sounded like glass hitting rock. We were able to convince him that he had to leave it behind when we left.

The archeology is .4 miles of easy hiking. At this point, anything under 1 mile is easy hiking.