Sunday, April 27, 2014

MauldenNews March - April 2014

Hello All!

We've had a very nice spring this year - in fact, I heard on the news that this has been the second warmest spring on record for our little valley here. For some reason, our emperor tulips did not come out until April - usually they are smiling up at me in March. But I'm glad they made it!

I've thoroughly enjoyed the absence of snow - though I have felt the pain of my friends and family elsewhere who have been pummeled by it this year. Let's hope we're really through the worst of it!

In March I had the good fortune to run the Canyonlands Half with some buddies - it was beautiful, sunny, wild and windy. I lost about a minute off my time retrieving my hat that blew off into a small ravine. Still, I was completely satisfied with my 2:18 and my "power disc" medal.

Tammy and I dined with our daughters for our birthday on March 8. Here they are displaying their genioglossus muscles.

Sam turned 8 on April 15. We had a fun party at the indoor pool and Splash Zone and a little family celebration at home. We all had blue mouths for awhile after this cake.

"COOL! This is JUST what I WANTED!!!" (a Power Rangers MegaZord, in case you didn't know)

Easter weekend was eventful - egg dyeing on Friday, birthday party on Saturday, egg hunt on Sunday morning, and...

Sam's baptism! Easter Sunday, April 21, 2014.

Then we took off for Spring Break adventures in Moab, Arches, and Mesa Verde. The highlight of our trip to Arches was Alle's first live lizard capture. I knew their tails could detach. What I didn't know was that the tail keeps moving all by itself for quite a while after separation from the lizard! Freaky to see.

"Mom, can we take him home? Pleeeeeease?"

Papa and Sam with "the Mitten"

Practicing the art of cairn creation

A suspicion of strep throat led us on a detour to Moab Regional Hospital, where Alle got a culture. It wasn't strep, but it did grow Moraxella catarrhalis and another unidentified bug so she got antibiotics. She didn't let it slow her down. We visited the Moab Rock Shop, where she and Sam got free dinosaur bones and we all enjoyed browsing the interesting gemstones and other oddities. We also toured "Hole in the Rock", an old diner and home blasted into the rock by a miner in the 1950s. Then we got sucked into the little zoo and Alle ended up riding a camel named Luke. I hope she didn't cough too much on the animals.

Mesa Verde was AWESOME.  Bryan and I marveled at the ruins while the kids climbed rocks and sought out bugs and lizards.

Sam's new porcupine puppets: Cutie and Porky Junior

Alle with Proud, her Eagle puppet. Proud likes to hunt Porky Junior.

Desert blooms

We stopped at a winery for a tasting. Kids said "No fair, this is only for the grownups!" Exactly.

Lamb crossing

Hovenweep National Monument - the Castle

Final notes - these are mainly for myself but free for anyone who thinks they may visit this area again -

Good marks for Moab Valley Inn, Moab Brewery, and Best Western Turquoise in Cortez. Far View Lodge (inside Mesa Verde) was OK but not worth the price. I would go back to the Moab Rock Shop, but not to the Hole in the Rock (once was enough). The Pepperhead in Cortez had great food and was family friendly and well worth the money.