Friday, November 28, 2014

Thanksgiving Morning in the Pacific Northwest

This year we spent Thanksgiving in the greater Seattle area.  Robyn's grandfather lives up here, so we thought it would be fun to come spend a few days with him to celebrate the holiday.

I got up early Thanksgiving morning and wanted to do some exercise.  I figured I would allow myself to eat pretty much whatever I wanted on this trip, but that made it that much more important for me to get plenty of exercise.

Of course, it's not hard to feel motivated to get out and exercise when I'm in such a beautiful area that needs exploring.  I set out to go on a walk, without a destination in mind.  I quickly discovered lots of trails that lead deep into the wilderness.  Clearly these trails weren't going to explore themselves.  By the time I got back to the house, I had walked 7 miles, climbed over rocks, scrambled through trees and almost fell in the Puget Sound.

Here are a few of the things I saw along my way.

I found lots of dirt roads that lead into wilderness.  Most of them turned out to be really long driveways.  But I explored them anyway.  That's how I roll.

I found Lois Lane.  I took a picture so I could show superman.

I could see the Sound through the trees.  All I ever wanted was to hike down to it.

I encountered lots of boggy wilderness that did not want to let me through.
I thought the mossy trees were really pretty.
Anyone who knows me knows I need to touch everything.  Moss is no exception,

After several attempts to get down to the water, I found a place that I could actually get through.  It turns out that getting through to the water can be very dangerous, due to the temptation to eat delicious animals.
Stupid fat people pollute the water and make once delicious animals yucky.
  When I finally made it down to the water, I was slightly disappointed.  I was hoping for a beach that I could run along or something.  What I found was really slippery mud that almost made me fall in the water 2 different times.  But at least this precious little tree stump was here to stand stoic and alone.

After finding the Sound, I ventured into several other lost and forbidden paths.  I was amazed how thick the trees were.  I was within 50 feet of a major road when I took this picture:

 Look how thick the trees are!  The only disappointing thing about the wilderness was that I didn't see a single Sasquatch.  If there's one thing the Syfy channel has taught me, it's that you're guaranteed to see a Sasquatch in the Pacific northwest.  I'm beginning to think that the Syfy channel deceived me.

Maybe we can't trust the Syfy channel.  But we can definitely trust Steven Spielberg, right?  If there's one thing that the Jurassic Park movies taught me, it's that when you see ferns, you're guaranteed to see dinosaurs.
I see ferns, but there was not a single velociraptor.  Disappointing.
The scariest animal among the ferns was little old me.
 As I was walking the various paths, it was fun to pretend I was in complete solitude in unexplored nature.  Of course, the fact that every path ultimately ended in a secluded house kind of ruined that illusion.
These people probably live off the land.  They're so secluded they probably don't even know that there are other people a few hundred yards away.

 One path didn't end with a house, it just ended with this tree who, true to its claim, has never littered at my house.

Eventually I wound up on a trail that actually ran along the water's edge.  I took this picture looking out at the water.

 Soon after that, I realized that I needed to head back if we were going to make it to Thanksgiving dinner on time.  Beautiful nature is fun, but being late for the most important meal of the year is no fun.  I headed back, but that just means that I need to do more exploring later.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Preciousness in the Snow

Something amazing happened this week. Robyn had fun, IN THE SNOW!  I know, it's hard to believe.  I wouldn't believe it myself if I wasn't there.  But let's not get ahead of ourselves.  She didn't build a snowman, or throw a snowball, or really do anything snow related other than walking through it.  But she was standing on top of snow and she was smiling.  Miracles do happen.

The key to this miracle was our good friend Jackie.  She recently got engaged to her Italian lover Giuseppe.  She invited us to go hiking, and clearly we weren't going to turn down valuable Jackie/Giuseppe time.  The location of the hike was chosen as Big Springs in Provo Canyon, which just so happens to be the place where Robyn and I got engaged.

Naturally, we made everyone stand in the spot where we got engaged so that we could take a precious picture.
These precious people had their preciousness increase ten fold when they stood in such a precious spot.

Jared was the photographer, so he made sure to take a selfie.  We made sure to photobomb his selfie.
We've been up there many times, but we've actually never hiked it in the snow.  That may be due to the fact that getting Robyn to go anywhere in the snow is difficult, but look how cute she is.

It's like she's twice as cute in the snow.

Everyone else had their normal cuteness level in the snow.
It was a great hike.  We had lots of fun.  My shorts were perfect winter hiking attire.  However, something really strange happened when we got home that evening.  Apparently I got more chilled than I realized.  Once I was inside our warm house, my body suddenly decided that it was cold.  I FELT COLD!  I don't even know what's happening to me.  I put on some sweats and I EVEN WORE SOCKS!

Take a good look.  It may never happen again.
Don't worry.  An hour later the world returned to normal and I put on shorts and let my feet go free.  But for a brief moment, I was in the Twilight Zone.  It was a strange place indeed.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Halloween isn't so bad.

So anyone who knows me knows that I really dislike anything that is scary.  I get nightmares way too easily so a whole holiday spent trying to be scary has never been one of my favorites.  That being said... Ta Da!
Sleeping Beauty also known as Princess Arora.  She is my favorite Disney Princess!

This is the only reason I enjoyed Halloween this year.  Normally I am not a fan of the holiday, but this year I made sure to dress up as something great.  I even had a little girl at school stop in the hallway, and with a huge smile, said,"Hello Arora".  That made my day.  Oh and now I also have awesome sparkly gold shoes.  The rest of the day was ok.  Jeff worked from home so I got to see him earlier then I normally do.  He took care of all the trick or treaters while I watched "It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown".  For it being my least favorite holiday I had a pretty great day.