Just returned home from our New Mexico vacation. We stayed w/ my mother in law Pat (Grandma)- it was me, Emily & our nephew Patrick (17). We were there for almost 3 weeks! Brian stayed home to do a home improvement project (our bathroom) & so while we were on VACATION-Brian was busy working his arse off, which just doesn't seem fair but it was the best thing we could do, since our bathroom facilities were unavailable for awhile. We just got home on Wednesday night *around 11 pm. The bathroom looks AWESOME by the way- it isn't finished but it will be soon. Anyway... back to the vacation... there were a few lows: including the train ride from hell & forgetting the "memory card" for my camera but mostly a bunch of "highs". It was a fun three weeks, not only did we do a bunch of interesting things but we also just relaxed, enjoying the quiet & peace that is New Mexico. I was really happy also to be able to connect a little more with my nephew Patrick. He's 17 & a good kid. I'm happy we had this opportunity to get to learn a little more about each other. We had a few great conversations. It was really nice. He & I are both trying to "get" healthy & so we had the trying to eat healthy thing in common. BUT it was vacation & so we didn't always succeed in doing it AND we decided early on.... that it was a goal of Patrick & I's to eat at least one green chile cheeseburger while in NEW MEXICO, & of course it was going to be the BEST green chile cheeseburger we could find! We were in New Mexico after all! So one day about 1/2 way thru vacation.... we went to a place called Santa Fe Bites & got one....... & OMG!!!! It was delicious!!! I'm telling you we did it right. YUMMY! Check it out if you are ever in Santa Fe, NM. You will not be disappointed. LOL! Anyway aside from a few New Mexico burrito's & that cheeseburger we actually did manage to eat fairly healthy the rest of the time & I officially came home 1 1/2 lbs LIGHTER!!! YAY! Hey I'll take it! It's rare you go on vacation & actually lose weight so I am quite happy with that. Emily's favorite part of the trip was "spending time w/ Grandma & Grandma's house". SO Sweet!! We did actually manage to get a few day trips in & even spent the night at Coronado Springs.... & visited a place called Soda Dam. It was really neat. We also went to Bandelier National Monument- it was really cool. Here's a little synopsis of the place courtesy of the website:
Bandelier National Monument protects over 33,000 acres of rugged but beautiful canyon and mesa country as well as evidence of a human presence here going back over 11,000 years. Petroglyphs, dwellings carved into the soft rock cliffs, and standing masonry walls pay tribute to the early days of a culture that still survives in the surrounding communities.
It was really cool, & we were even allowed to go into a few of the dwellings carved into the cliffs. (caves) Unfortunately it was really hot that day & Emily & I only did about 3/4's of the hike. Cause we both were really hot. There wasn't a whole lot of shade & I was worried that Emily would get over-heated. We were drinking LOTS of water but still that altitude really gets to you. Emily was happy to visit the "gift shop" which is always a favorite of hers, while Patrick & Grandma finished up. I always say this.... MY mother in law is almost 75 yrs old but she can RUN circles around me. Which is both embarrassing & inspiring-it makes me want to get fit/healthy even more. ;) Anyway another thing we did was go to a "tea" that was hosted by a little old couple Gayle & Ron Ice that they host on Tuesdays (mainly in the Summer) at their house. The couple is in their 80's. The wife is the one who explains the food she has cooked, that you'll be eating, while the husband goes in and out bringing the various courses to you.... he doesn't talk. There must have been 8 courses all served on fine china, & real "sterling silver" flatware- you know the kind of fancy "table setting" that includes all those un-necessary forks & spoons... lol. The lunch consisted of appetizers (fresh veggies, & cream cheese roll ups), scones, different teas, mini-sandwiches (think cucumber sandwiches) which included egg salad, chicken salad, turkey cranberry, & a radish one as well, we also had salad, fresh sorbet (palate cleanser), before a mini quiche, followed by two kinds of cake (carrot cake & a lemon cake). Everything was homemade & YUMMY! It was so nice. My favorite part was listening to Mrs. Ice. She was sweet & obviously cared about making you feel welcomed in her home. She told many stories including one about how their "90 year old farm hand" moved back to Mexico & they are having to handle everything including the farm themselves & not doing as good of a job hence why their fields didn't quite look as good as last time Pat came to "tea". I was like wow....in his 90's & just retired! Something must be in the air of New Mexico... maybe we should move there. We also visited a "bug" museum, spent a day in Albuquerque-visiting a museum, doing a little shopping & going to lunch, spent a day at Cochiti lake & did some kayaking, went to the Santa Fe Opera, hosted a 4th of July party for some of Pat's friends, went to the International Folk Art Market (with artist from 140 countries) & relaxed a lot!!!! I was actually able to read nearly 3 books... & I never read! So that was really nice. We had a great time, but I'm happy to be home & to see my husband again. I really missed him & I'm sure Emily missed her daddy too. One of these years maybe we can actually vacation in New Mexico together... that would be something.... fingers crossed.