Tag Archives: Arizona

Goodbye Sedona, hello adventure!

Happy Thanksgiving to our American family and friends! The weather is cooling off here too, but still glorious. This week I thought I’d share some of the pictures I’ve taken recently on the deck here. Jack says  Dan and I are “getting old” because we enjoy watching the birds.

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After Thanksgiving in Sedona, we will be heading to Tucson to visit with the wonderful Linda Price and our Tucson friends. It will be a trip down memory lane for Jack, who attended kindergarten in Tucson. (Joe still swears he’s never been there – he was two – but for some reason he does remember Linda’s house. It’s that memorable!)

Next week, it’s the long trip back to a winter visit in Ontario.

As our time in Sedona winds down, we are getting very excited about planning the major travel adventure to come! January 1 we leave Canada for 6 months, the first four of which will be spent on the Semester at Sea program. While we are in the various countries, we have quite a lot of travel time as a family. In most countries we are participating in Semester at Sea field programs, and they sound fantastic. Although all trips sound great (tobogganing down the Great Wall of China!), I am especially looking forward to some unusual trips we are doing in Burma, Namibia, and Morocco.

Rather than the crazy hectic pace of a trip from south India (where the ship docks) up to northern India to see the Taj Mahal and Agra, we have decided to stay in the Kerala area of India. With the kind guidance of my Indian friends (thanks Niraj, Kersi, Srini and Ratti!), we arranged some fantastic independent travel in the south of India.

After the voyage is over, we are spending two months in Europe. After a few days in England, we will fly down to Athens, and ferry over to the islands of Naxos and Santorini before flying to Rome. After a few days in Rome we will start a gradual train trip through Europe. If any of you have favorite spots, especially less-well known ones, send them my way!

Grand Canyon #2

We went back to the Grand Canyon with Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin this time.

Auntie Mary and Uncle Kevin

On this trip we went to Hopi Point and saw THE COLORADO RIVER. We could see the rapids from about three miles away!

The river at the bottom of the Grand Canyon

If you are wondering who Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin are, they are very nice people and have a very nice family including Sophie their dog. She is very cute as you see here.

Cute Sophie!

She likes climbing on you if you lie down and will start licking you so much you can barely breathe. It’s AWESOME 🙂 !

Sophie laying on me last summer

The Grand Canyon 2.0

Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin on the way to Chicken Point
The view from Chapel of the Holy Cross
Had to add this just for the sheer beauty of it.

My Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin came to visit. It was really fun. Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin are hilarious. On the third day they were visiting we went to the Grand Canyon (for the people who haven’t pieced it together).

We snuck up on this guy at Grand Canyon National Park
The Colorado River at the bottom of the canyon

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Aunt Mary finds love in the hobby of gift shopping. She got this cool calendar with super sexy rocks. All the women reading were chanting in their heads “FIREFIGHTERS”! All the guys were chanting “Beyoncé” (or worse Kim Kardashian). Well anyway it was nice to have a connection to the outside world. While I’m on the subject I was thinking (it was extremely hard) about how Kim has her own show. The world is at its peak in TV with Fat Guys in the Woods and The Real House Wives. Not to mention the infamous Keeping up with the Kardashians.

“And now Ladies and Gentlemen it is time for fun stories with Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin.” One of the best things about them coming is we saw Javelinas. That’s right I finally got in with Javier the Javelina. It was really fun with them I got the closest I have got to deer and Javelina. I mean I was standing 15 feet away them. I think I have had the best time here with Aunt Mary and Uncle Kevin than anyone (including you Lisa). It was super fun and amazing.

I call him Javier!
Cute babies!

Rebels and Redcoats

Yesterday we went to a re-enactment called Rebels and Redcoats. If you haven’t figured out what the re-enactment was about, it took place in the Revolutionary War. It was pretty fun.


We met a few goats too.


The British won the battle with no casualties. The rebels did have casualties though, with two dead and one wounded and about eight captured. The British, with more troops and a trained commander, outflanked the American light infantry. Then they captured the American second in command after he tried to kill a Major.

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It was super fun. Still not fun in Sedona.

Africa (not really)

Yesterday my family and I went to a zoo called Out of Africa in Camp Verde. It is a privately funded zoo, with a tour bus that takes you inside a massive pen with lots of different animals (no meat eatersL).There was a sweet giraffe who ate the celery out of my mouth. It was really cool.

Mom missed the shot, but he took this right out of my mouth!

The ostrich named Chili Pepper tried to raid the cookie bucket.

Greedy Chili Pepper

Then we went to the lemur cage that also had a big rabbit in it. The lemurs were scared of the big 16 pound bunny, so they decided to gang beat him. It was so mean yet so cool. The lemurs went berserk; they jumped on the fence and ran through their ewok homes in the trees. It was super fun. After that we went back to the casino (my Dad couldn’t stand the smell). Your trusty just a Sedona-hater (Camp Verde is okay) Jack.

Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Sodium, Batman. If you get this, you deserves my Mom’s PhD.


Yesterday, Mom, Jack, and I saw Alexander and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day. It was AWESOME! It had strippers, a Peter Pan that is drunk, an alligator, a kangaroo, and a…green baby?


We also went to Pumpkin Splash. It had a bouncy castle, bat cave, what is in the box, throwing bats, golf, bobbing for apples, and pumpkin splash. Where you go in to the pool and get a pumpkin! Let me tell you a secret, no place in the world has more people in one pool ever!

pumpkin splash joe 2
This is the one I chose!

June’s take on Grand Canyon Trip

We had an awesome trip to the Grand Canyon this week. The first day we hiked as far down into the canyon as we thought Joe could make it back up. As the warning signs on the way down say, “Going down is optional. Going up is mandatory.” It was glorious weather, chilly up top and increasingly warm as we descended. Having to turn back was expected, but Dan and I really did want to get further down. Next time!

See a short video of the trip here:  http://youtu.be/O_jaS7Yduko

That evening we stayed at the Canyon and had a “fancy” dinner at El Tovar on the South Rim. The walk back to the hotel room (about a mile) under nothing but starlight was glorious. The boys were star silly. On the second day we just walked around the Rim Trail a little more before heading back.

On the trip home we took a side trip up into the San Francisco Peaks, up to Snowbowl outside of Flagstaff. It was a perfect time to see the brilliant yellow aspen leaves. Against the green of the pines, it was a gorgeous contrast, as you can see.

View from Snowbowl, Flagstaff
View from Snowbowl, Flagstaff

I had to seriously degrade the quality of the video to be able to upload it with the wifi here, but I hope you still enjoy it.

The Grand Canyon

On Monday and Tuesday my family and I went to the Grand Canyon. It was fun.


We hiked about one fourth of the South Kaibob Trail to Cedar Point.



We stayed at Yavapai Lodge and went to El Tovar for dinner and the bus boy was the best bus boy in the world (he called me sir). Then in the morning, we hiked along the Rim Trail.


Then on the way home, Joe slapped me. He slapped me because I sleep best in the car and Mom could not get me awake to see a crazy road. Then we got home and watched Gotham and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Then I slept more.

The Grand Canyon

Can you believe this?
Dad and I love this place

At the Grand Canyon we went down South Kaibob trail and when we were on it we saw this.

Out-running the mules!

We also saw a blue bird that would not go away. It is a guide. He would always fly a few metres ahead of us. One night we went to a fancy restaurant that had a very nice man (if you read my brother’s blog). And we stayed at my first motel BUT IT HAD NO WIFI!!!!!!

No Wifi!

Visit to Fort Verde and House Tour

This week went by in sort of a blur! Lisa left a week ago, and it seems like just yesterday. Lots of work hours in this week, mainly on the ACR conference. But I did get some tennis in, and enjoyed several hours in the sunshine on the deck.

Yesterday was a fun day, as you may have gathered from the kids’ posts. We went to a nearby town for their “Fort Verde Days,” sort of a local celebration of their pioneer history. The fort itself was built around the Civil War times, and the kids got a chance to chat with Union and Confederate history buffs, Buffalo Soldier actors, and see working guns and cannons from that era. We started the day with a Kinsmen Pancake Breakfast. The local parade was a hoot, with a real small town field, including the crowning of “The Colonel’s Daughter” who is chosen for her horsewomanship (if that is a word).

You can see from the kids’ posts that we then went to a casino. Ugh. However, when the heat is on, and everyone is hot and tired, I thought it would be a good idea to try an arcade/bowling alley. Turns out, the kids’ club they have (for parents who want to gamble) was a huge hit with my kids. As I don’t gamble, I got to sit in a nice spot and read a book! Good time for everyone…

I’ve had a few people ask to see this cool house we are in. So this week instead of photos I am uploading a video to Youtube. It’s a 5 minute walk-through of the place. Those of you who are interested in design may like it – they call the house “Frank Lloyd Wright” inspired. I can see that, with lots of glass, wood, and tons of stone walls on the interior of the house. Enjoy it here;

To all my Canadian friends and family: I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!