Thursday, June 25, 2009

Yellowstone Preamble

I'm supposed to be packing. I have eight typed pages of checklists to make sure I remember everything. (Yes, I am a bit compulsive about checklists.) Ked and I are heading to Yellowstone tomorrow. I'm so excited I can hardly think straight--thus the need for all the lists! We're taking our trailer, two friends and their two children on a twelve day excursion. I better not forget anything. Twelve days is a long time to go without shampoo! (Yes, I know, most people would just buy it on the road, but do you know how hard it can be to find unscented shampoo at a truck stop? Not even an option.) I've been cooking and prepping for weeks, and we will try to cram all that food, clothing and sundry supplies into our little 22' trailer tonight and hit the road tomorrow afternoon.

I'm nowhere near ready to go as I sit here typing. Why then, you ask, am I wasting time on a blog post when there's work to be done? Answer: I can't help myself!! I started thinking about all the great hikes and sights the last time we visited Old Faithful, and my mind wouldn't rest until I dug up a few of the memories. I just had to pass a few of them on to you. The picture quality isn't great, but it's the best our technology at the time could manage, so here we go. I won't spend lots of time captioning. (There, the limited captioning ought to give me at least two or three extra minutes of packing time!! Whew. That'll save my hide later when the pressure is really on!)

I can't wait until the kids (8 and 5) see their first buffalo... or elk... or moose... or bear. Whee!! This should be fun!

Everywhere you go there are landscapes that look like they belong on some alien planet. If I remember correctly, this beauty is called "Morning Glory."

Not all the hot springs are particularly benign. There is something a little disconcerting when you are in Yellowstone about knowing that you are in a giant caldera and the volcano ain't exactly sleeping soundly.

Evey time I see this picture it makes me think about that cartoon that I used to read when I was a kid. What was the name of that little guy? Iggy? Izzy? Something like that. It's gonna bug me till I remember. Anybody else have a clue? Ziggy, maybe?

I know it's only been six years, but I can't get over how much younger Ked and I look. (Psst. Don't tell him I said that...)

Who is that mere infant standing there, and when we see her next will she have any feet?

We saw this family of bald eagles every day as we entered the park. Dad, Mom and youngster made that nest a must-visit to start each day's adventures. Once we got to see Dad flying in a big, fat fish and dropping it to his eagerly waiting family. Ked actually caught the whole flight on video. How cool is that!?

Well, so much for limited captions! I'll end with this little shot, stitched together from several others. We took our time playing with the camera until we figured out the "panorama" setting. I know it will be different this time around, because we probably can't ask the kids to wait while we get just the right photo, or drag them on seven mile hikes, or make them sit in a car for hours hoping a moose walks by, but this adventure will be great in its own way, I know. I can't wait to get to Wyoming again and see all the amazing places, animals, geysers, mud pots and all the rest, through fresh, young eyes. Hurry up tomorrow!! Oops, that reminds me--I better get packing!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Sight Restored

I'm heading over to my church to work on some rooms I'm remodelling, but something came in my email that is completely, unbelievably, wonderfully cool, and I had to take a minute to pass it your way. Scientists are discovering more and more ways they can heal you with stem cells from your own body. I can't believe how simple, quick and painless this one is--take a look!