Mother’s Day Hike

According to Nathan, ‘normal’ moms want to go to a movie on Mother’s Day, not hike 13.5 miles, climbing into and out of a 500-foot canyon twice. Who wants to sit in a theater when I can be out on the trail with these crazies? Besides, ‘normal’ is not a word that has been used in our house in a looooong time.

Hope all the moms out there had a wonderful day!!

Ready to head out

Just keep walking…

500 foot Alamo Canyon. We went down and up, twice.

Yup, we’re going down there!

Beautiful Alamo Canyon

Company on the trail

Potsherds out at Yapashi Pueblo

With 350 rooms, 6 kivas, and a reservoir, Yapashi was the largest settlement in Bandelier.

Stone Lions

Flowers were blooming everywhere!

At the Track

We went to a middle school track meet yesterday afternoon. I am not sure what all those boys ate for breakfast, but they were all so fast! I was so impressed watching them all run. Liam had a great day as well. He tied for 1st in the high jump at 5′, placed 3rd in the 400m open, and his 4x40m relay team took 1st! We are looking forward to the next meet this Saturday!

Cerro Grande

At 10,199 feet, the summit of Cerro Grande is the highest point in Bandelier National Monument. It is only two miles from the parking area to the summit, so it is not a very long hike, but it definitely gets your heart pumping! What a good climb! It was an absolutely beautiful hike, though, with an absolutely amazing view. I think we need to climb it again!

Just keep climbing…

The summit!

The view of Valles Caldera from Cerro Grande

Beautiful view!

Hiking the Canyon

Last weekend we took a drive down the road to Ponderosa Campground. From there, we jumped on the trail that would take us down into Frijoles Canyon. This happens to be the same canyon we spend a lot of time in, we were just further upstream. From the parking lot at the campground to the visitor center in the park is about eight miles, the perfect distance to get the heart pumping.

Good morning, Pretty Girl!

Of course we were not exactly expecting snow, but as we neared the campground, that is exactly what we ran into. Snow never lasts long around here, so we were not too worried about it, even if there were a couple of us in shorts. (Luckily the little girl also had pants in her bag, because she ended up putting them on!)

This tree dumped a branch of snow down our necks while getting our packs out of the car…

 Extensive flooding back in 2013 pretty much washed this trail out, but with much work from the trail team, it is almost back together. There is about a mile section in the middle through the narrows where one has to pick their own path, but overall the trail was fantastic.

Care Bears like hiking, too!


We hiked the Canyon Rim Trail. which you can see here, last summer.

There has been a lot of mountain lion activity in this area lately. A couple of weeks ago they even closed one of the back-country camping sections due to so much activity. Apparently mountain lions like this particular hiking trail, too! We saw lots of prints, but no kitty. That is probably a good thing, although Rob was armed with his bear spray, just in case.

Here kitty, kitty…

Once we got into the canyon, the snow was pretty much gone. This is where we eventually lost the trail and had to make our own way. We lost track of how many times we had to jump the creek! It was great fun though and it felt so good to be outside. Can’t wait to see where next weekend takes us!

The Narrows



The twins have both enjoyed 6th grade Rocket Club. After two months of hard work building and painting their rockets, it was finally time to launch! We arrived at school early this morning for last minute instructions and pictures before the launch began.

There goes “Maverick!”

All of the kids were told that if they were able to catch their rocket before it hit the ground, they would be given $1. About half of the kids were able to do this. The best catch was worth $5, and it went to a girl who ended up sliding sideways down a hill, before snagging her rocket string on her finger at the last moment. It was all very entertaining to watch!

“Steve the Pop-tart Kitty” has launched!

Nathan was quite excited because the paint job on his rocket won him another rocket kit. He went with a patriotic color scheme and named his rocket “Maverick.” As an added bonus, he was able to catch it before it hit the ground, earning himself $1. Catheryn had been quite nervous that her rocket would not launch. Her worries were laid to rest as her rocket, “Steve the Pop-tart Kitty,” flew high into the sky. She was not able to get to it before it landed, but she was so happy that it actually flew, that she did not seem to care one bit. “I was sooo close,” she said to me later. Which she was… And thus marks the end of Rocket Club…

Happy Twinnies

And just because they make me laugh…

Nathan: Wait a minute, what do you mean launch is over?
Catheryn: My rocket launched!

Nathan: Are you sure it’s over?
Catheryn: Oh my goodness, my rocket launched!

Nathan: It just doesn’t seem possible…
Catheryn: I’m so happy my rocket actually launched!

Nathan” But… but… but…
Catheryn: My rocket launched!!!!

Nathan: Nooooooooo!!!!!
Catheryn: Did you see that? My rocket LAUNCHED!!!



First Tournament!

Nathan had his first wrestling tournament last Friday. The tournament was broken over two days with different age groups wrestling at different times. Fifth and sixth grade went on Friday night, so there were only three kids from Nathan’s wrestling club there.


We arrived in Santa Fe at 5:00pm, but the tournament got off to a late start due to basketball practice. Once they got the mats rolled out, though, they kept the matches rolling rather quickly.

dsc_0270Nathan had two matches. He lost the first and won the second. Liam was great at giving him tips and showing him moves that would be helpful. Nathan did really well and was super excited to place 3rd in his weight group.


His next age-group tournament is next Friday, and then they will have the team tournament and duals. The season is almost over, but Nathan has learned a lot and is looking forward to wrestling in middle school next year.