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Posts Tagged ‘travel’

  1. Weekend Reading

    August 7, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    LEARN from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.
    What if your job was to travel the world and learn new things every day? How awesome would that be?

    I’m on Goodreads, a place to share a love of books and reading. Follow or friend me there and let’s talk about books!

    I watched a movie called Blood Into Wine last night. It is about Maynard James Keenan’s (the frontman of Tool) foray into wine making in Northern Arizona. And, yes, good wine can be produced in Arizona. If you have Netflix, the movie is available for instant streaming.

    For everyone watching Shark Week, let’s step it a notch shall we?

    What are you up to this weekend?


  2. Denver Botanic Garden

    May 23, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    A photo essay…


  3. 30 Day Challenge: Exercise Recap aka Slacker Central

    May 12, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    Welcome back, folks! Man, life gets busy sometimes. I haven’t blogged much and I can really only chalk that up to how busy we’ve been. After traveling to Connecticut and Missouri, we were in Illinois for three days last week. I’ll post about that trip at a later time, but we had a lovely weekend visiting family, celebrating baptisms, and enjoying my first Mother’s Day. Between travel, packing, unpacking, job hunting, and just life in general, I really haven’t had much time to blog even though I have tons of ideas rattling around in my head.

    All of this busy-ness also lead to an epic fail on my part. That 30 days of exercise challenge? You know, the one where I was supposed to work out at least everyday? Yeah, I didn’t even post a 50% success rate. I counted up the days and workouts and came to a grand total of 13 days. Yikes.

    Some days I put these on and went for a run.

    Other days I rolled this out and stretched and balanced and…fell over.

    But most days, something got in my way. Some days the weather was bad. Some days I was on the run traveling or completing errands on the one day of the week I had the car. (We’re a one car family.) Some days I was just plain lazy. I had fully intended to join our rec center for the month, but then looked at how many days we would be out of town and how many days I would use it when we were in town, and it just seemed like a waste. I also didn’t get to try as many new workouts as I wanted to or have as much variety as I wanted. There were a lot of walks, a lot of yoga, and a few runs. I did a couple sessions of P90X, which kicked my butt. Although, I found the host to be incredibly obnoxious. There was also one disastrous jump rope session. (All I will say about that is that jumping rope post childbirth can be…a challenge. In the same way sneezing becomes a challenge. I think most of the mamas here understand.) Sadly, there were ZERO hikes. Zero. This needs to be rectified quickly.

    The upside of this failed experiment is that I’m a bit further along than I was before. I have figured out where I want to go with my workouts and what I am capable of at this point with this post-pregnancy body. I also feel like I have a more realistic handle on what I’m capable of with my current life and responsibilities. Right now, I’m home with Olivia. I love playing with her everyday and just being her Mommy. In a few short months, however, I’m hoping to be back at work teaching. So, these hours in the day when I have the opportunity to crawl around with her on the floor or push her in the tree swing in the backyard are precious. I’m going to choose that over working out 9 times out of 10.

    My next steps are going to be to continue this 30 Day Challenge. I am not where I want to be in terms of physical fitness and exercise has yet to become a habit in my every day life. So, just like running, I’m going to continue to put one foot in front of the other. One day soon, I hope, this will again be my reality.


  4. St. Charles, Missouri. It’s better than Bass Pro Shops.

    April 26, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    Last week, Tim, Olivia, and I traveled to the St. Louis area for a work conference Tim was invited to speak at. It was a treat to be able to travel with him. Tim and I have been to St. Louis before. When we go to his hometown of Champaign, IL, St. Louis is the nearest major airport. Also, his Uncle John and Aunt Kathie live in St. Louis, which always gives us an excuse to stay a day or two in St. Louis before heading to Chambana. The first time Tim and I went to St. Louis was also my first time visiting the area and we did some of the touristy stuff. We walked around downtown, visited the Gateway Arch, and grabbed a bite to eat at a restaurant in Laclede’s Landing.

    This time we stayed in St. Charles, Missouri at the Ameristar Hotel and Casino where the conference was being held. St. Charles is just north of St. Louis and the hotel is right on the Missouri River. We were lucky enough to have a room with a river view. Every morning Olivia would look out the window to check for birds and barges.

    The Missouri isn’t quite as grand as the Mississippi, which also runs through St. Louis, but for a girl from Phoenix, it is still an impressive river.

    The day of Tim’s presentation, Olivia and I didn’t really have much to do. A casino hotel, as you can probably guess, isn’t really set up to entertain children. Any time we were walking around the lobby and casino areas, the line from Sweet Home Alabama kept running through my head. “You have a baby. In a bar.” By about 11am, I was getting a bit claustrophobic, so I decided to take O for a walk. I thought I had seen a path that ran along the river and figured that would be an ideal spot. As we walked out of the hotel, I started to look for a pathway that connected the hotel to the river path, but there didn’t seem to be any easy access that was stroller friendly. Why would a casino want its patrons to leave the casino to enjoy a city’s sights? Duh.

    Instead of cutting across busy streets, pushing Olivia’s stroller against traffic in the gutter, and down an embankment to the path, we just continued along the sidewalk until we got to the nearest strip mall. As opposed to a scenic river view, we saw this.

    I had never actually been in a Bass Pro Shops, so we went in and walked around. There was a lot of camouflage print everywhere and there were a lot of dead animals. Not really my kind of place. I’m an outdoorsy girl, but more along the lines of REI than Bass Pro Shops. To each his own. We walked around the rest of the strip mall and then back to the hotel. I was glad to have gotten outside a bit, but was left feeling a bit uninspired by our adventure.

    Later that evening, we were to meet up with family to celebrate Tim’s birthday at a nearby brewhouse. We drove less than five minutes to get there from the hotel. Easy walking distance. When we got out of the car, we saw this.

    It was about this time that Tim started pointing and laughing and I started cursing under my breath. Instead of walking through this historic district from which Lewis and Clark launched their great exploration, I went to Bass Freaking Pro Shops. Talk about an epic fail. We went into the brewhouse and had dinner and celebrated Tim’s birthday, but I basically made him promise to come back the next day before our flight left so we could explore some more.

    The next morning we had breakfast and loaded Olivia into her stroller. We checked out of the hotel and drove back down to Historic Downtown St. Charles.

    The street is tree lined with gas lamps and cobblestone pavers. In short, it puts the Charm in Charming.

    We stopped for coffee.

    Then we started to meander down the street. Maybe we moseyed. I’m not quite sure. It was lovely either way.

    There are a lot of very old buildings that line this street. Like this.

    Or this.

    Or this.

    This area is now dedicated to mostly shopping and restaurants. I loved that we didn’t see one franchised business. Everything appeared to be independently owned. After we had our fill of cute shops and charming buildings, we crossed the street and took the pedestrian path down to the river.

    It was a lovely walk. Much nicer than Bass Pro Shops. If you are in the St. Louis area and have a morning or afternoon free, get up to St. Charles and wander this lovely area. You won’t be sorry, I promise.

    To see all of our pictures from St. Charles and St. Louis, click HERE.


  5. A To-Do List…Colorado Style

    March 24, 2011 by frecklesandsunshine

    One of the upsides of moving to a new place is that you get to discover new places and experience new adventures. With an infant demanding most of our attention and a limited supply of babysitters we trust, our adventures have been few and far in between. But it is time for us to start exploring our new home in depth, especially now that Spring has, well, sprung. Here’s a list of the things I would like to do in Colorado. I don’t really have a time frame, but would like to experience them sooner rather than later. Apologies in advance for the lack of photos. I really like to include at least one in every post, but seeing as how I haven’t done these things yet, its rather difficult to supply pictures.

    In no particular order…

    1. A Concert at Red Rocks

    Along with the Gorge in Washington, this is one of the most talked about concert venues in the nation. I really want to see a show here and am hoping it will happen this summer with these guys.

    2. Camping in Rocky Mountain National Park

    After seeing Ken Burns’ National Parks documentary on PBS last year, I was bitten by the national park bug. Lo and behold, we have one of the best just about an hour away. We’ve visited a number of times since we’ve lived here but got here too late in the season to camp. I’m not sure how camping with an infant works, so this one may be further down the road, but both Tim and I are itching to sleep under the stars.

    3. Mesa Verde

    Also on the national parks list is Mesa Verde. An 8 hour drive from Denver, Mesa Verde is definitely not a day trip, but I would love to see these ruins first hand.

    4. Skiing

    I really can’t believe we went through a winter here without skiing. Darn babies. Good thing they are so cute. I love to ski (not snowboard) and have skied at Squaw Valley in Tahoe and all three resorts in Arizona. (Did you know you could ski in Tucson?) I’m looking forward to next ski season and getting out there as much as possible. And when Olivia turns 3? Look out! We are getting her on that bunny slope the first chance we get!

    5. Flyfishing

    Tim flyfishes. Our good friend, Dave, flyfishes. Between the two of them, I am hoping that someone will give me a lesson so I can try it out. I don’t know that I really want to take it on as a new hobby, but I want to give it a try and see how I like it. In terms of surroundings, I’m not sure there is anything better than standing on a river on a hot summer day.

    6. Telluride Bluegrass Festival

    I have it on good authority from a couple different sources that this is an awesome festival. With a line up this year that includes Mumford and Sons, The Decemberists, and Sarah McLachlan, I really, really want to go.

    7. Explore Denver

    Even though we live just 20 minutes outside of Denver, Boulder is closer so we have naturally spent more time there. There is a lot to do and see in Denver and I want to take advantage of all the amenities a major metro area offers.

    I’m sure more adventures will be added to this list, but this is a good start. Any Coloradans want to offer up some suggestions?

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