Monday, July 12, 2004


This past week was absolutely fabulous!  First of all, when we went to pick up the mini-van from the rental place, the guy at the desk quickly determined that I was definitely not the Carol Brady soccer mom mini-van driving kind of person and offered us an Excursion for the same price.  It would end up costing us in gas (15 to the gallon), but the kids each had a window seat with an empty seat between them... no touching!  That made it all worth it! 

Our first stop was Arizona, at the Hopi reservation.  We arrived there late and had to set up the tent in the dark.  My husband made sure to warn all of the kids about the hole behind the tent but for some reason neglected to mention it to me, and me being the accident magnet that I am, I fell right into it while trying to secure a line.  I grabbed the nearest thing which just happened to be the tent pole which snapped since I hadn't been able to practice my miracle weightloss method prior to setting up the tent and was carrying a little 'extra weight'.  Luckily the pole was the only thing to break and aside from a few bruises I was fine.  Unfortunately once it was determined that I would live, I then became the target of every 'hole' joke imaginable.

We went up to the ruins of the Walpi village where my husband's grandfather was born and raised.  There was a family still living there among the ruins and the gentleman gave us a tour of a kiva and the surrounding area.  Later, in the newer part of the village we met up with a relative, many times removed, of my husband.  It was funny because we had parked infront of her house while looking at some kachinas and she had come out to speak with my children, and mentioned that she knew the name.  When we went into her house, which doubled as a store, we noticed some beautiful prints of kachinas and then noticed that the artist was a distant cousin!

From there we went to the Grand Canyon.  I made sure that we set the tent up in the daylight because lets face it, the Grand Canyon is a very deep hole to fall into!  Later we walked over to the Desert View to watch the sunset.  My kids were so loud and finally I told them that if they didn't hush the sun would not set.  And the entire place went silent.  EVERYONE shut up!  I couldn't believe it.  I guess my 'mommy' voice works after all.  The silence lasted for about 3 minutes, until one of the kids cracked a fart.  I looked at the tourists beside me and explained.... 'Rocky Mountain Ducks'.  They nodded and smiled, and I knew they hadn't understood a word I said, until the smell hit them.  The nose needs no translation!

We pitched our tent under the roosting tree of the Grand Canyon Roosters.  Those would be crows, who actually wake earlier than the common barnyard rooster, and 'caw' non-stop until your ears ring.  Of the hundrends of thousands of trees in the whole canyon, they had to perch on the tree right above my tent!

Then it was on to the Hoover Dam.  It was 108 when we stepped out of the vehicle.  I almost melted.  The heat was way too much for me and after a quick tour of the area I took the kids back to the coolness of the truck.  That was just way too hot for me.

We reached Canyon Country, CA late in the evening.  The next day we went to the marina at Santa Monica.  It was so nice to see the ocean again.  I practically grew up in the Pacific and that is probably my only regret about moving to the mountains.

The following day it was on to Disneyland where we would spend $600 in 3 days!  The best thing to come out of that trip was me over-coming my phobia for roller coasters.  In an effort to prove to my young nephew that they were fun (and to prove to my kids that their mama wasn't a chicken), I got on first one, then another and another.... and NO!  I am not cured,  I screamed the whole time, and I have pictures to prove it... Wouldn't you know, Dickidoo went and bought every picture the  park took of me screaming in terror!  The one picture they got of me smiling he didn't purchase.. because I wasn't screaming!  You know, I really think that hole in Arizona was no accident!

We took a break from the adrenaline the next day and went out to Chino to visit some  relatives of my husband.  His aunt and uncle are just wonderful!  Lois is a petite woman with white hair and a twinkle in her eyes.  Elmer is on the onset of Alzheimer's, but oh buddy is he a funny guy!  He is the owner of the P51 Mustang Man-O-War, which is a fighter plane from WWII.  Every once in a while his eyes cloud over with confusion and Lois patiently explains to him, and then he'll snap back into the present and he is such a funny and charming... and intelligent person. 

And if Disneyland wasn't enough, we went to Magic Mountain next.  That was uncomfortably hot.  Six Flags doesn't cater to the park goers the way Disney does, and while their rides are a little more exciting and heart-attack-inducing, their general setup leaves a lot to be desired.  Still, we had a great time and Dickidoo added another picture of me screaming to his collecting.  I'm thinking he has some kind of sick fetish going there.  Rocky got a leaf and started rubbing her face with it.  I told her to stop incase it was poisonous (it wasn't, but I wanted her to think), and she just rubbed it on her face harder.  With in 24 hours she has a red rash.  Now she has zit like blisters all over where she rubbed the leaf.  No, it wasn't poison ivy, just hibiscus which has a tiny hair like thing on the under side of the leave.  It doesn't itch, just stings.... but we're keeping an eye on her just in case.  I'd like to think that she wouldn't do something like that again, but she probably will.

All too soon it was time to head for home.  My sister-in-law and her husband were awesome hosts.  There was a little apprehension because of a quarrel she and my husband had last summer, and while I still think they need to talk it out and apologize to each other (apologizing is not common in their family I have come to know), it was a very pleasant week.  Brenda became ill from the heat and all the running around so she spent a lot of time at home, but during that time she cooked and cooked and cooked!  My mission now is to find something that can express my gratitude for her efforts. 

We actually stopped off in Vegas on the way home.  Of course Steve didn't stop at Coco Cola town (or what ever its called) which he knew I would love, or Margaritaville, which I begged him to stop at.... but he went straight to Circus Circus, a place he had gone to as a child.  I guess he felt a little bad about not stopping at Margaritaville cos he gave me a 50 dollar bill to spend in the casino.  I would rather have spent it at Coca Cola or Margaritaville, but this was as good as I was going to get so I thanked him and went and blew it all on a few machines.  I kept hearing people around me winning and I wondered... 'why not me?', but oh well.  If I'm ever to get rich I get I have to keep my day job.  Oh wait, I've had that job for 5 years and I'm still not rich.  Hmmmmm.... well, thats no fun!

And anyhow, here we are, back at home.  There is still dirty laundry on the floor, and a couple of forgotten plates had molded over.... the weeds have taken over the front yard,  and my Coca Cola cooler has frozen over, but other than that the house is fine.

Once I unpack I'll get some pictures uploaded.  I promise I won't put them all up (over 300), just my favorites.  I want you all to know that I had to pass up on a lot of photo opportunities because my husband didn't approve of the subject matter.  For instance... I saw a deer on the side of the road.  Not just any deer, but a really flat deer.  Now I didn't know that a deer could get that flat, I mean it was like a deerskin rug, only it had legs!  That bugger was dried and mummified, it was flat as a pancake!  Nobody would believe a 150 pound deer could get that flat... like it was run over by a steamroller or something... and so I wanted a picture, but NO, he wouldn't stop.  I did get a picture of the snake swallowing the lizard.  I tried to take the lizard away from the snake but that only made it mad and we ended up having a tug of war.  The kids made me let go, but I was winning!

Anyhow, I'm off to bed, its been a long 10 days and I've got a lot of catching up to do.  I think I'll start with sleep!   There's no place like home. 





ryanagi said...

Sounds like quite a trip! Can't wait to see photos. :-) -B

hebby1021 said...

Glad your home...sounds like the trip was very eventful!! I can't wait to see the pictures!!

beckieramos said...

sounds like a great trip! Glad you made it back safe and sound. God bless. Beckie

fuzzypanda68 said...

Totally missed reading your journal and I can't wait to see more of the pics. Glad you weren't seriously hurt in the hole trap that dickidoo didn't tell you about. I laughed so loud when you referred to him as dickidoo! It sounds like a wonderful vacation. I would have so enjoyed the old ladies store, the villiage and the ruins. I hope you have pics of those. 108 degrees? OMG, I wouldn't last a minute in that heat. And I'm the type of person who prefers my windows open to having an AC blasting it's freezing fake air out. Lois and Elmer sound like sweet gentle souls. It's too bad about the Alzheimers. I would have enjoyed seeing the mummified deer. Flip dickidoo on the head for causing us to miss out on that. LOL Welcome Home. ((((hug))))

ann7inflorida said...

Welcome back Dorn!!! I pissed my pants when I got to the Rocky Mountain Duck part! I think our families have a lot in common! ; ). It sounds like you had quite a time. : )   (I want to see some of the "scream" photos! lol)

sixpackjeff said...

welcome back, dorn. sounds like you guys had some fun. glad to see you back......

hestiahomeschool said...

I am glad you're back...for the first couple of days I kept stopping back at your journal like an old hound dog waiting for its master to come home.  Hmmm, those Rocky Mountain Ducks must be related to the Appalachian Ducks we have here. Do you think so?

purplectigger said...

Wecome home. We all missed you. Thanks for all the good vacation storys.

angieabk said...

I can't believe you were in Vegas and didn't call me!!!  I WOULD HAVE taken you to the Coca-Cola Store... I was sitting here in my living room thinking... "I need to go to the Coke store... And didn't know why.  I still think we're two halves of the same whole!

I'm so glad that you're back!!!  I've missed you!!!!!