Saturday, April 7, 2012

Escape to Buffalo Island

One of my goals for this year was to enjoy more of our surroundings. I travel a lot for work and when I meet other people who find out I live in Utah they always comment on how beautiful this state is. That, and how weird our liquor laws are. But, back to the beautiful state: I usually agree with them and then think to myself, 'I really ought to see how beautiful our state is for myself one of these days.' So, Z & I have been trying to check out more local attractions (you may remember how well one of our last outings went). A couple weeks ago we set off on a Sunday adventure, heading North! To Buffalo Island! as Little A calls The Great Salt Lake's Antelope Island. And I have to say, he has a good point there. We saw dozens of buffalo but only one antelope.

Holy cow, er, buffalo. That place is gorgeous.

And offers lots of fun photo opps. Luckily, we got this elusive albino buffalo to stand still.

Because of the rolling hills, big sky, lots of water making up this one-of-a-kind landscape, it apparently used to be quite the filming location back in the day (like, wayyyyyyyy back), as this sign commemorating a 1923 film shoot shows.

We drove around the island, admiring the views and all of the incredible buffalo that are just feet. from. your. car. and then stopped at a ranch on which the state's oldest house still standing on its original foundation sits.

There is an amazing picnic area with giant old Cottonwood trees, lots of grass and tables. Since we're from the inner city, we preferred to eat OP style (original picnic) and use a blanket.

We stopped to take a few timed photos.

Before the camera tipped sideways.

We spotted a herd of deer in the distance.

And more beautiful scenery. Did I mention it's beautiful here?

We loved walking around around the ranch. 

And then headed up to a look-out point. Little A was elated when he saw his favorite thing: a dumpster. The child is OBSESSED with anything to do with garbage. Trucks, cans, dumpsters, you name it, if it has to do with waste, he loves it.

We got to the viewing area just before the sun started to set.  The view was on par with the most stunning I have seen anywhere in the world.

I am so glad we took this little day trip. We had a great time together as a family and now when people tell me our state is so beautiful, I'll be able to say with confidence,

it sure is.

But liquor laws, you're on your own.



Antelope Island, Salt Lake City attractions, Salt Lake kids activities

Sunday, March 18, 2012

New Chapter


Since the last time I updated this a lot has changed.

We made the hard, but for-the-best, decision to close the restaurant. Just about four hours after we officially decided to close, I got the call that the job I wanted ( I'd been interviewing for it for weeks and weeks) was mine. I had described it to family and friends as the job of my dreams and now that I'm about eight months into it I still agree with that. It's been incredible.

Z is excelling in his new role as a full-time stay-at-home dad. This has been such a benefit to us as I am getting settled into my new position. Previously he and I were taking turns during the weekdays to be home with Little A and then he headed to the pizza shop every night and all weekend. Every weekend. Looking back at it now it really was just too much for us in every way.

And, so far, we're welcoming such exciting plot twists as--for the first time in our lives together--weekends at home (all of us! under the same roof! all weekend!), evening dinner together (all of us! at the same table! every night!) and the ability to make plans for previously unthinkable things like vacations.

There are still some unknowns as we figure out what's in store for us but we're looking forward to the next part of our story.

The lovely photo above is "Vintage Books," a print available for purchase, from butterflyfood on etsy. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Monday Lovely: To the Sky

As a kid I was a little bit infatuated with Amelia Earhart and ordered multiple books about her from our elementary school book orders. This was pre-Google. (Do you remember ordering books? You'd fill out what you want on the thin, crinkly paper and then wait for the books to get there and it was like Christmas? At least it was for me... Best day ever.)

I used to imagine what happened to her and in my more positive thoughts she was living it up on a deserted island with some fun, castaway friends in cool Swiss Family Robinson-style treehouses.

This new-to-me online magazine Matchbook did a fun feature on Amelia-inspired style. I loved all of the items included, especially the photo of our heroine and her adorable pixie haircut and awesome airplane in the background.


Friday, June 3, 2011

That's like 80 in dog years

This week Z & I celebrated 10 years of wedded adventure. I can't believe it's been that long.

The photo above is beautiful isn't it? It's from this wonderful blog. And it's a photo of peonies. My favorite flower. Of all the details, big and small, from that day, I remember a few things extra clear, allllllllllll these years later. One of them is the peonies I used to decorate the church and some parts of our reception. They were from my grandmother's garden and serendipitously bloomed just about a day before our wedding. They were bright pink and so cheerful.

I'm taking the fact that they made a magical appearance for our big day as a sign of good luck.

Here's to another decade.

Photo by Oh Happy Day.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Owl Righty Then

These beauties and their impressive color were but a mere distraction 
to Little A until we could get to the owls.

Little A and I spent most of the early afternoon at the local aviary. We had a blast. 

When I told him this morning we were going to the aviary to see the birds he immediately started with the questions. His queries led me to understand he has inexplicably (and overnight) become owl-obsessed. "Are we going to see an owl?" "I want to see an owl and a baby owl." "Where do baby owls come from?" "What color are owls?" "Are the owls there the ones from Aunt Suzi's house?" "Owls say 'hooo hooo' just like a dove. But they are not doves." "I reallllllllly want to hold a baby owl. Baby owl feathers are SO soft!"

We had to run a couple of errands and then finally got to the aviary. We were checking in at the front desk and the college-age guy working was cute with Little A, asking him if he was excited to see the birds. "Yes, I want to see the owls. Do you have owls? Do owls live here?"

The guy assured him that owls do, in fact live there. But, just as our luck would have it, the brand new super impressive extra fun and exciting Owl Forest of all Owl Forests was opening for the first time -- tomorrow. We missed it by one day.

However, he said we could still see the owls from the sidewalk. I was relieved. And Little A's head was about to explode from pure happiness. Then the guy gave us a map of the grounds that had an OWL ON THE COVER and it almost put him over the edge.

We trekked around the aviary, looking at flamingos, eagles bald and golden and some unfortunate looking vultures (poor guys). "Where are the owls???"

Finally, we got to the owls. I lifted A up so he could get a good look and as a large barn owl turned toward him -- I grinned in anticipation of how excited he was going to be -- he mumbled "Oh, there's one." 

And then immediately turned his attention, and excitement, towards a pair of ducks that just poo'd on the sidewalk.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Monday Lovely: Conversations

Little A & Z yesterday at the Living Traditions festival.

Little A: Goodbye, Mama! You are going to work?

Me: Yes, honey, I am. I will see you later. Have fun with Daddy today!

Little A: My cookie monster has a hole.  He has a tear.

Me: Oh no! I can fix it. I will sew him up later when I get home.

Little A: You will?! Oh, Mama. You are the most beautiful mama in the world!

Me: Thank you! I love you so much.

Little A: I love you, too. Can I have a hug? I love your kisses.


Friday, May 20, 2011

Washington Square Park. NYC. 5.12.11

I took this photo with my phone on a beautiful spring day. And speaking of Washington Square, have you ever heard Ryan Tanner's song of the same name, by his band Atherton? It's one of my favorites.