Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Happy First Birthday, Luke! And June in Unalaska

We've been home since June 7 and I have been trying to catch up on vacation posts, which meant I missed this sweet boy's first birthday on the 13th!  The photo is a little outdated since it's from my February visit but isn't he the cutest?  Don't mind the fact that I am sitting on the toilet--we were watching Emery take a bath at the time. haha  Anyway, happy belated birthday to my little birthday buddy.  I remember a year ago waiting and waiting to hear from Bonnie or David that he'd arrived.  The last time I'd talked with Bonnie that night, she was in hard labor so I didn't want to bug her.  Finally, hours later, I could take it no more and rang her up.  Oh, funny, Luke had been there for quite awhile and they'd texted us his photo and stats.  Which, thanks to our crappy remote Alaska system, we'd never received.  He's a sweetheart and we are so happy to have him in our family.  Wish we could have celebrated birthday #1 together. I figure one day he will not think it's all that cool to share a bday with his old granny but I am pretty happy about it. 
I turned 59 on the 13th.  I still find it very hard to believe that I could be 59. On the other hand, Rich and I have mistakenly referred to ourselves as 60 more than once. It's like we've totally glossed over the whole 59th year.  :)
We don't do a whole lot for birthdays because we have typically just returned from a trip and we really don't seem to need a thing.  Still, I definitely like to have my birthday acknowledged and to feel a little spoiled that day (call me shallow, it's okay).  My friends took me out to lunch the day before and my coworkers on the day of.  I got up in the morning to find a sweet card and some lovely earrings on the table from my husband, had lots of calls and emails and Facebook greetings and then Rich and I went out to dinner.  So I would say my need for attention was met and I was a happy gal.
 This past Saturday was a gorgeous, sunny, even warmish day so we went out for about a two hour walk.  It was great to be out in the air and sunshine. 

The first wave of unique Aleutian flowers are making their appearance.  I love the way the flowers appear in cycles and change the look of the landscape with each new burst of color and texture.

 Eagles overhead are a constant sight.
This is a view of the small boat harbor and part of the UniSea complex.  Our house is on the hill in the center of the photo, for those of you who have asked where we live.  It's a duplex and we live in the bottom half.
We passed this little eagle party on the walk home.  I was a little leery because they have been known to attack people that they feel are threatening them or their nests. I didn't see a nest anywhere but one of the birds was kind of swooping around.  I've learned to keep my distance!

The hills are greening up, the snow is melting off the mountains, the temp is getting a little bit warmer and we are looking forward to all the beauty that continues to unfold.  Happy summer, everyone!

Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

Our flight did not leave Palm Springs till evening so we drove out to the Aerial Tramway and took a ride.  It's touted as the world's largest rotating tramcar, taking us up the cliffs of Chino Canyon.  The tram begins at 2643 ft. elevation and ends at 8516 ft.  The floor rotates, allowing a 360 degree view on the way up and down.  Pretty cool.

 At the top, we walked up a bit further and took in the sights

If we'd had more time, we would have taken a hike around the area but we could only stay long enough to walk around a little and ride back down.
We flew from Palm Springs through San Francisco and on to Seattle, spending the night, and then to Anchorage and Unalaska the next day.  I'd been dreading the flight into Unalaska for a week but it was no problem. I need to quit worrying!  Another fabulous vacation finished!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Breakfast and Goodbye

Bye-bye, sweeties!  We love you!

Last Night Together

I love a "bonus visit"--those trips that just kinda work out even though we hadn't planned a get-together. Even though it was short, it was fabulous!
 We went out for a nice dinner at a cool place downtown called LuLu's

 What a fun time we all had!

 After dinner we took a walk in downtown Palm Springs
 Standing under a huge Marilyn Monroe statue (yes, she's wearing panties). haha
 We walked past a band playing and the kids started dancing--so cute
Grandpa playing with the kids before bedtime

Fun in the Sun

 Elle is quite the water baby and LOVED the big slide best of all. 
 She convinced all of us to take a turn at the slide. Thankfully, there are no photos of me coming down. That thing was FAST! 
 Little swimmer
 Sarah and Elle
 On the other hand, Beck preferred the sandy beach and played happily for long periods of time.

Here are a few photos of the resort. We got a good deal on Sniqueaway and were mostly pleased with our stay.  Meal service in the restaurant was super slow and not the best food but otherwise everything was great.  (I was a little disappointed that my "fondue" was chunks of cheese in a bowl. When I asked about it, I was told, "we just CALL it fondue."  Really?  Shouldn't you tell your customers that up front?!)  But there were certainly lots of things for the kids to do, which was our main objective.  

Ahhhh, lots of sunshine and beautiful scenery....I loved it.

The Living Desert

Sarah, Suanne and I took the kids to The Living Desert one day while the guys were out playing golf. It was SO hot in Palm Springs and we thought this was one of those wildlife parks where you could drive through in your car.  But no, that was not the case!  We started out walking but soon got pretty overwhelmed with the heat and paid a few bucks to get off and on a cart driving through the park.

 Elle looking at the train tracks and all the fun stuff along the way
 This kinda cracked me up--a dinosaur in the pen with the livestock
 Beck checking things out
 "World's smallest fox" and some birds
 Luckily there was an indoor "discovery center" where we played for awhile and cooled off

 Back outside and looking at some butterflies on the way to the playground
 At the playground

 Carousel ride!

 Petting zoo--but goats were the only animals we could pet!

 The volunteer in the petting zoo said this goat loved to be hugged so the kids obliged.  So cute.
A hot but fun time was had by all!