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A runner with an appetite for adventure!

1st Birthday Weekend Celebration June 11, 2013

Since our families don’t live close by, we decided to skip on the iconic ‘1st Birthday Party’ and celebrate just the three of us with a quiet weekend away instead. On Friday night, we headed to Rancho Mirage (oh, hey President Obama!) to stay at the Rancho Las Palmas hotel. The room was great, we kept the AC blasting to combat the 102* temps outside!
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In typical Adele fashion, she settled into the big king bed nicely.
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We traveled with our Pack N’ Play and set it up in the bathroom. She slept great, all night long, both nights we were there. We kind of missed her though and wished she was cuddling with us, but alas, baby needs her sleep.

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After we were done exploring the room, we decided to brave the insane temperatures and venture out for a walk. We ate at a BBQ place across the street that was pretty fun. Adele dined on Jalapeño cornbread, sweet potatoes and parts of my hamburger.  I’m trying to remember if there was a vegetable in there somewhere…. [thinks for a second] oh yes, the corn in the cornbread. Does that count? Good times.

The next morning was a special day. Adele turned one. June 8th. When we heard her wake up, both Irving and I ran in to grab her and smother her with kisses and hugs. We sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to her twice. A special day indeed. We let her open up some presents! Her friend Sophie gave her the best gift ever. A book that lights up and sings. Mind blown.
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And we wheeled out our gift from the closet…. check her out!
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We got her the SmarTrike dream and she LOVES it! I mean, it has a cell phone, come on!
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Cell phones are tasty!

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Eventually, the trike converts (little by little) into a big wheel tricycle! I like quality toys that grow with the child. A+ so far (which is more than I can say about the piece-of-crap plastic shopping cart we tried to buy her at target… yea, that will be returned asap. You win some, you lose some).

Happy Birthday, Adele!

Part 2 of our trip coming soon!!

 

 

Zion: Blue Skies and Icicles January 24, 2013

Filed under: Travel,Utah — Kelocity @ 10:49 pm
Tags: , , ,

On Monday, after we hiked the Canyon Overlook trail, we took a break and had lunch at the Zion Lodge. Not much is open during the off-season, but we had a pretty good lunch (Grilled Turkey and Cheese with Pasta Salad for me!) Adele munched on my avocado slices, pasta salad and veggies. Mmm.

Then it was time to hit the trails again!
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We drove the entire length of the valley floor to the other side. The road ends at a parking lot and we set out on foot onto the Riverside Walk trail. The trail is relatively easy, but offers some neat views as the surrounding rocks start closing in on you.
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Adele was safely tucked away inside our hiking backpack. She loved facing forward and taking in the sights like we did. Such a big girl.
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The trail was supposed to be 2 miles round trip, but it was cut short when we saw this sign.
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Yikes! Usually this is a waterfall, but in the winter, it completely freezes.
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Someday, we’ll have to come back in the summer because this trail leads into The Narrows. Not sure that I’ll ever hike inside the Narrows (scary!) but I hear you can get inside a little bit to get an idea of what it’s like. Someday. Someday.
Secret Journey[source]

But we still enjoyed the scenery and the fresh air regardless. The Virgin River flows into Zion Valley via the Narrows. I can’t even imagine what this is like when it’s full and flowing. Must be amazing! That river, after all, was powerful enough to carve out the entire canyon millions of years ago!
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We were only on the trail for an hour or so, but it was enough to give Ms. Sleepyhead a good nap.
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With the baby asleep, we had time to kill before we got back in the car. (We didn’t want to wake her up). So we headed down to the river to play around.
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IMG_9371Oh, heyyy! I wanna touch the water!

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Soon after, we headed back to the visitor’s center. I’ve said it before, but I just can’t wait til Adele is old enough to want to buy something in those stores. Will she want books? A bag full of gem stones? Those educational-type stores were always my favorite (nerd alert!) and I hope she loves them someday too!
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With time to kill before we retreated to the hotel for the day, we did a short walk around the property. It was too nice to not be outside.
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Around 3p, we did make it back to the room to relax before dinner. A good two hours of snuggling, crawling and playing. This is what vacations are all about now; quality time with the family! Love it.
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My favorite one:
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One more day left in Zion to tell you about! Hope you’re enjoying the pictures!

 

Adventures in Zion January 23, 2013

Filed under: Utah — Kelocity @ 11:59 pm
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I have a few photo-heavy Zion posts coming your way. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

When I left off, we were making our way from St. George to Zion National Park. The drive was relatively short and soon we were in Springdale (the last town before the park Entrance).
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Our hotel was in Springdale, but we skipped checking in and headed straight to the park for a few hours first. We gladly paid our $25 park entrance fee and made our way like little kids towards the visitors center.
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After getting a brief overview from the Rangers, we decided to walk the Pa’Rus Trail nearby to get a lay of the land. The trail is pretty flat and meanders through the valley floor.
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Lots of great views of the towering mountains, unique landscape and the Virgin River.
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At one point, Irving looked behind us and whispered “Look, there’s a bear behind us!” I turned to look and there was a very nice lady wearing a bear hat. haha We had a great conversation about raising kids to appreciate nature and the National Parks.
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This trail was the perfect intro to Zion. It made us excited for the hikes we had planned for the next two days.
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I’m very proud of this picture! If any musician wants to use this as their album art, let me know. I have no clue how to properly use our camera, but every once in a while, I get lucky.
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When we finished our walk, we went back to the Visitor’s Center and watched the 20 minute video on the history of the park. (Did you know they found Dinosaur tracks in there??) We also stamped Adele’s National Park Passport there too! (She’s got two stamps now! Yosemite and Zion!)

Then we checked into our hotel and relaxed for the rest of the day. We stayed at the Desert Pearl Inn in Springdale. Another amazing hotel. I loved it!
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Hard wood floors in hotel rooms wins me over every time. It felt like a ski villa or something. A+.
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We spent the rest of that afternoon relaxing in the room and grabbing some dinner. Most of the restaurants in Springdale are closed in the off season, but we had a great meal at Wildcat Willies. We fed Adele some peas, mashed potatoes, bread and a taste of a pickle! She’s so fun to eat out with now. She loves sitting in her  highchair like the big kids do. So fun.

We had a rough couple of hours that night trying to put her to sleep and we ended up putting her in our bed again. Once she fell asleep, we all slept til 8am the next day! Well-rested parents for the win!

We ate breakfast in the hotel (we bought a pack of donuts from a bakery in St. George), and then set out on a full day of Zion adventures! First, we head out in search of the Zion Mount Carmel Tunnel. It was built in 1930 and goes straight through the mountain! See that tiny hole? We’re gonna drive thru that!IMG_9248

There’s a twisty road that weaves its way up the mountain to the entrance. It was so pretty as the sun was starting to peek into the canyon.
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Check out the frozen waterfalls along the route!

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And soon enough, we were about to enter the tunnel! Wheeee!
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The tunnel is 1.1 miles long and soon enough, we were on the other side! Not a bad parking spot for our little minivan!
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And our first hike started right past the exit.
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We parked the car, strapped Adele into the carrier and began ascending the mountain via the Canyon Overlook trail. She fell asleep pretty quickly!
IMG_9263Note to inquiring Grandmothers out there: She’s got a long sleeve onsie, two jackets, a hat, gloves, booties and a blanket on her! Don’t worry, she was warm. =)
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And up we go!
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Hi sleepy baby! Are you awake?
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Yep! She woke up just in time to take in the beautiful views!
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The Pine Creek canyon below!
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Be careful though, there’s a scary bridge on the edge of a cliff that you have to walk over! Eeek! Scary!

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Adele, are you scared? Let’s listen in to find out:

If video won’t load, click here to view it on youtube! I’m working on fixing it!

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Other cool things along the trail were icicles melting in the morning sun…
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And amazing monuments that only nature could create. This one is called the Beehive!
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How’d you spend your Monday morning?
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After the hike, we drove back through the tunnel and into the valley floor. Along the way, we stopped to look at the Court of Patriarchs.
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Adele was impressed. I love that girl.
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Gosh, we love Zion. Everywhere we looked we were in awe of what we saw.
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More pictures and hikes to come!

 

Adele in the Desert–Part 1 July 23, 2012

Filed under: Baby,California,Family,Palm Springs — Kelocity @ 5:12 am
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It was bound to happen sooner or later… Baby’s first weekend away! In honor of our third anniversary, we decided to sneak away to Palm Springs for a couple of days in the desert! It would be Adele’s first time in a hotel! (Gotta start em’ while they’re young, right?) We packed our van full of everything we could possibly need for our family of three and hit the road. She did great and slept the whole two-hour drive there.
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We stayed at the La Quinta Resort. We picked it because it looked pretty comfortable and it had two golf courses on the property for dad (priorities!) It was a little far from the main attractions in Palm Springs, but since it was going to be so hot out, we weren’t planning on venturing out much with Adele anyways.
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The hotel had a rustic-chic feel. It is pretty old (built in 1926), but it had a lot of character and it was clean and comfortable, so I’d stay there again for sure.
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Irving and I have stayed in a LOT of hotels over the years…. but this was the first time our end tables looked like this while we were there! Funny how things change when you have a baby!
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When we got settled into the room, we set up her pack n’ play for her to sleep in. When time came for a nap, I tried to lie her down in it and she was fussing a bit. So I put her on our ridiculously comfy king sized bed… and she passed out.
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Uh-oh, we better watch out! She knows a good thing when she sees it! HA!
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We spent the first afternoon just hanging out and enjoying the quiet time together.
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Once the sun set and the temperature dropped (100* down to 80* !?!), we headed out for a delayed anniversary dinner. Cheers to three wonderful years of marriage and to our new addition!
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Water for the breast-feeding mama! Cheers!
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I spy a quiet sleeping baby in the background!

Table-Made guacamole! Don’t mind if we do! I seriously could (and did) eat it with a spoon. OHMYGOSH So good.
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After dinner, we enjoyed an evening stroll around the resort. The mountains were pretty silhouettes in the sky. So romantic and beautiful.
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Day 2 coming in the next post! But first… one more picture of my little girl…just because!
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Swim To the Pier!! July 27, 2011

Filed under: Family,Food,New Hampshire — Kelocity @ 8:32 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

Day two at the lake included lots of…well, swimming in the lake!! Seriously, the water is crisp, clean and fresh and you actually feel cleaner coming out of it. (Don’t worry, I still showered… sometimes).

 

For the past ten summers that Irving’s been coming to the lake with me, he’s been DYING to swim to the pier. Of course, you really can’t do that since it has heavy boat traffic, but he still wanted to swim as far as he could.

 

My mom is a really good swimmer (she used to teach and swim competitively!) So she and Irving swam away. I’m a pretty good swimmer, but my endurance isn’t that great right now. So Chris and I grabbed a fun noodle and tried to catch up!Kelley Pix (91)

Once we got there, I gave Irving my noodle and swam back completely unassisted! Swim for the win! I’m paranoid about touching the slimy rocks on the bottom, so it forced me to keep kicking!
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Per summer vacation rules, lunch was served on paper plates right on the beach! (Chicken Parm Leftovers! YAY!)

Fun fact: Those blue napkins are from our bachelorette party on the lake!Kelley Pix (95)

I’m not sure what we did between lunch and dinner… probably reading, swimming, reading, swimming.

And then we eat again! Do you ever feel like that’s all you do on vacation is eat? At least the company was good! Beers for the boys!Kelley Pix (97)

They were working hard out there in the heat!Kelley Pix (98)

These guys are soul mates. Seriously. They’re so funny when they get together. Maybe they’ll be brother-in-laws someday (no pressure!)Kelley Pix (101)

Irving and Papa!Kelley Pix (102)

After dinner, we went for an evening walk to burn off some of our eats from the week.
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I’d walk more often if my route looked like this! How pretty is that channel. IMG_6410

This is Irving and my dream boat. It’s a Speedster. A mix between a jetski and a boat. Looks like so much fun!
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I used one walk to justify a whole day of eating… and then rewarded myself with ice cream. Healthy living? What healthy living?
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What a perfect, relaxing day. Everything about it was just perfect. 🙂

 

Dubai by Bus…twice! November 8, 2010

Filed under: Dubai — Kelocity @ 8:00 am
Tags: , , ,

Originally, this was 10-25-10.

For our first full day in Dubai, we opted for a hop-on/hop-off bus tour to show us around the city. We chose Big Bus Tours, which we highly recommend.

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They took us to all the major sights and it was extremely organized and easy to use.

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We were happy to be on the bus because it takes all the pressure out of finding your way to the tourist sights.
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Everything is in English, but the Arabic was still a little overwhelming at first.
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The first stop we got off at was the Dubai Museum.
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It was really well done. It was a nice glimpse into how life in Dubai used to be.
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From here, we joined a walking tour (included in our Big Bus Tour ticket price). It was a great way to explore the souks without getting lost.

This is the Grand Mosque. You can’t go inside unless you are Muslim, but it looked really pretty.
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And right down the street is the Iranian Mosque. It was so pretty.
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Walking through the old Souks, you could see what life was like in the desert prior to modern air conditioning. They used Wind Tunnels to capture the breeze and draw the cooler air inside.
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Then we jumped on an Abra (a small boat) across the Dubai Creek.
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On the other side, we walked the spice souk. So many amazing smells and herbs. I bought some Arabian Tea, it smelled delicious.
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After that, we also walked through the Gold Souk and the Textile Souk.

Against the modern skyline of Dubai, you can still see the old way of life. Along the creek, they still import and export goods to India, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. On 100+ year old boats, they transport refrigerators, appliances, food, and other goods.
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Apparently, this is the world’s highest flag pole!
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This is the Jumeirah Mosque. It was gorgeous from the outside. This is the only Mosque that non-muslims can enter in Duabi, but we didn’t have the appropriate clothing to go inside. We’ll have to save that for next trip to Dubai. Smile
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Then the tour took us along the gulf coast. You could see the water and it was really pretty.
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Our next stop was the Madinat Jumeirah (a really nice beach-side resort).IMG_0515

Inside is a really nice souk, but the views outside were the highlight. It’s really close to the Burj Al Arab, which was perfect for some photos before the bus came by to pick us up again.
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Then drove up the Palm Jumerirah to see the Atlantis Hotel. This is famous because the islands were created to look like a giant palm tree. Atlantis is on the crescent of the palm tree at the top. (More on Atlantis later!)
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As the sun was setting, we had some fantastic views of the Arabian Gulf.
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One thing we LOVED about Dubai was how large the skyline is. There are multiple ‘downtowns’ and each is divided into mini cities. This one is Media City.
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Then we headed back to where we started the tour. Along the way, we got a good glimpse at the Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest building). More on that later too!
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Then we grabbed some Dunkin Donuts for an afternoon pick-me-up! (Can you believe they have Dunkin Donuts in Dubai and not in Los Angeles?!)

After this, we headed to our Big Bus Night Tour. This was different because the day tour is a pre-recorded audio guide, but the Night Tour has a real person giving commentary and sharing stories along the way.
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It was a long day (there may or may not have been a half hour nap on the bus during the tour)….

ok… there most definitely WAS a nap on the bus (but don’t worry, I got Irving back good for taking this picture!)
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We stayed in the CityMax Al Barsha hotel and we highly recommend it. It was really close to the Mall of the Emirates and Ski Dubai.
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It was clean, convenient, reasonably priced, new and friendly.
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It goes without saying that we legitimately passed out that night. The 11 hour time change from LA was catching up to us!

Stay tuned for day 3!

 

 
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