Tuesday, December 20, 2022
Monday, December 19, 2022
Shortly after I pressed publish on that last post, I got a call from our local Golden Retriever rescue organization. They had rescued twelves--TWELVE--golden retriever puppies, approximately 6 months in age, and their mom from a puppy and mill and some truly horrible conditions. They needed foster homes.
So, being the suckers for a cute dog face that we are, we agreed to take one in. We named him Nacho Dog, because he is NOT our dog and he's only staying until he's healed up and finds his forever family. Nacho is doing really well, has settled in finally, and we think we've found his forever family! He's one of the sweetest, calmest pups I've ever had, and I'll be sad to see him go--but the chaos of two dogs and two kids and two adults with two full time jobs is too much. No foster fails here.
Wednesday, November 30, 2022
- Day 1--Arrive at Denver at 10:20 am. Rent car, drive to Estes Park.
- Day 2--Split day between time in park and time in town.
- Day 3--Same.
- Day 4--Leave Estes Park and head to Denver; rent car and stay at hotel near airport.
- Day 5--leave at 5 am from Denver.
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
I have so much to say and catch up on that it's almost overwhelming! Here's a preview, mostly in pictures.
We hiked all over Acadia National Park and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Shortly after I returned from Acadia, my mom and I went to Rocky Mountain National Park. Magical doesn't quite cover it.
Monday, October 3, 2022
Plans are coming together for our October trip to Acadia National Park!
Traveling: We had originally planned to fly and rent a car, but ultimately decided that a road trip was the way to go. So the K Caravan will be heading across several states in our van, stuff and all! Our kids are good road trippers, we like being able to carry some of our stuff and gear we couldn't be able to bring easily on a plane, and lord, airports are SUCH a hassle with kids and stuff.
We plan to leave on a Friday and make it to Buffalo, where we can hang with my parents. The next day, we either leave super early in the morning and make it all the way to Acadia, or we decide to make a real road trip out of it and pick a random location before or around Boston to stop. Buffalo to Acadia is anywhere from 10-12 hours from my parents' house. Stopping just prior to Boston is one option, and hanging with JK's sister for the night; the other is a more winding route into some of the small towns in VT or NH.
We are traveling with friends who will join our caravan in Buffalo. Their child lives out in Maine, so they are combining this with a visit to her.
Stay: We've got a place rented with a local company. We've got a whole house to ourselves, shortly after you get onto Mount Desert Island. I'm excited about this place, because it's got water views. We figured this was a good base for exploring all of MDI, while also giving us easy access to get off MDI and maybe check out parts of the park that are located elsewhere.
Hikes: I mean, as per usual, we have a whole list that we will adapt, depending on weather, kid participation, etc. EK has agreed to get up before sunrise and hike up Cadillac Mountain with me to see sunrise at the top--we shall see if she will do it. It might be JK and I, and our kids may hang with our friends.
Other stuff: We've got plans for kayaks, renting bikes, a boat ride, time in Bar Harbor, seeing the lighthouse and other landmarks, and more. All weather depending, obviously. We also know that there's the chance to do some tidepooling and other things that will be wildly new experiences for us.
Saturday, October 1, 2022
What's that, you say? You just posted a plan for this. For a snowy, winter visit, right? And also aren't you going to Acadia, like SOON and maybe you should plan that?
Yep! And those are still the plans!
My parents were here for a short visit, and my mom was talking about how she always wanted to go to Yosemite. After they left, I thought to myself, well, self, let's just take her there! So I told her, and planning commenced. She's had surgery recently, so she decided she was not up to Yosemite, her dream trip, and wanted to wait until she had recovered more. I suggested five other national parks I knew she had not been to, and she picked Rocky Mountain NP.
I actually tried to talk her out of it, based on my own experience. But then, I did a search for easy hikes and easy walks, and looked at everything there was to do in town, and though, nah, this is PERFECT. I think she was nervous that I would want to do some big hikes, but there are lots of easy, gentle hikes I've never done because I thought they were too crowded. However, we're going in November, so crowds will be significantly less.
Stay: YMCA of the Rockies.
Hikes: (1) South Moraine Lateral Trail; (2) Sprague Lake (if she's up for it, from East Portal; if not, just around the lake and maybe down the trail a bit); (3) Bear Lake; (4) Dream Lake; (5) Nymph Lake; (6) Lily Lake; (7) Beaver Meadow; (8) Beaver Ponds; (9) Alluvial Fan; and (10) Hidden Valley. Look at those great, easy options! If she's feeling it, we could do harder hikes and just go real slow.
Other stuff: (1) Browsing Estes Park; (2) The Estes Park observatory; (3) activities at the YMCA of the Rockies.
Day 1--Fly into Denver. We meet at the Denver airport, grab, the car, and head to Estes Park. We'll get there well before we can check in, so I'm thinking lunch in town and driving around RMNP. I'm going to pick a good spot for sunset, and we can watch the sunset.
Days 2 and 3--We are going to decide on the day or night before what we are doing. There will definitely be a sunrise viewing in the park, and hopefully a sunrise hike; driving around the park and small walks and hikes; more sunsets; shopping; dinner in town; and fingers crossed, a night at the observatory.
Day 4 is going to be a morning in Estes Park and then either driving straight back to Denver or maybe driving around to Grand Lake, then Denver.
Day 5 is leaving at FIVE AM ugh.
I can't wait!
Friday, August 19, 2022
I cannot even begin to describe how much I loved these hikes. Right here in Indiana, which you think of as flat and corn fields as far as the eye can see, you've got these two gems.
We hiked an absurd amount, and I can't believe the kids and Hank held up for it. It's an hour drive from our house, so we geared up, and hit Turkey Run first.
We started with trails 6, 7, and 11 as a warm-up hike. The kids were super excited when they realized we would be hiking through a ravine and a mostly dried up creek, jumping back and forth over the water. They also very much enjoyed the stairs and the little lookout spot.