Every Time it Snows

 

Every time it snows (especially near the weekend), we all squeal a little inside.  Well, I’m not sure Doug technically squeals, but it’s safe to say he’s happy.  Why?  Because we do this:

Drive into the mountains:

And go for a hike in the woods, pulling Johnny in the sled.

At this point in our hike, Johnny was singing his favorite songs as we made our way through the forest.

 

We hike in to our favorite sledding route.  I think we are the only people who use it!  It’s perfect – out in the middle of nowhere.

With a gorgeous view.

The snow was up to 2 ft in some places.  It’s tricky when you are only 3 ft tall to navigate deep snow.

But this little guy is such a champ.

Breaking in the sledding run by himself (don’t worry, he didn’t go far).

Having a snack and hot chocolate.  It was too cold (wind chill definitely sub zero…maybe –10ish?) to keep gloves off for a long time. So this is where the wheels kind of fell off of the bus.  Johnny was too hungry and his hands were cold.  So we packed up and headed back.

 

This really is the best way to keep warm:

 

Johnny kept ahold of the ice ax in case he needed to self arrest.  Winking smile

And he *almost* started snoozing on the ride back.

 

We had such a fun Sunday!  It really hasn’t started to feel like Spring at all around here (obviously).  We are trying to soak up these dwindling days of winter while we can.

Hello, Winter!

Well, hello there.  Yes, we are still around. Smile I’ve been blogging a lot over on my crafty blog, so this space has been kinda quiet.  However, I got a new camera for Christmas, so there will be lots more family pics to share!

We had a wonderful Christmas… an excellent mix of (extended) family time and some time with just us.  Johnny was pretty funny on Christmas morning… I still don’t think he quite “got it”.  He doesn’t really like un-wrapping presents, so he mostly just brought a present to me or Doug and asked us to unwrap it.  Note to Santa next year – don’t wrap stuff!  He got pretty burnt out on the whole thing before he was even done.  He opened the last few presents and his stocking around 4 PM… he did not get this from me!

Santa Claus was very good to us.  Johnny’s favorite present from Santa was his bike.  He just rides it from one end of the kitchen to the other.  Hopefully, we’ll have a warm day soon and take it to the park.

Other favorites were from the grandparents.  Papaw & Bella got him the horse – he rarely gets off of it!  Yes, I’ve even been reading books to him while he sits on it.  Matter of fact, this is the view whenever you sit on the couch downstairs now:

Grandma & Grandpa Mojica got him the six shooters and holster.  Grandpa made the holster!  Johnny loves it.  He rarely takes it off, and usually wears it to sleep during naps.

Overall, we had a wonderful Christmas!  Hope you & yours did as well.

And to catch you up on what we’ve been doing the last month or so… here are some pictures from our favorite sledding/hiking spot.

 

(yes, Doug has a camera on his head!)

(watching dad sled down the big hill from the warm truck)

I hope you are all staying warm and enjoying the calm after the bustle of the holidays!

One more, just because he’s cute:

A Super Fun Playdate

We met up at the park yesterday with a bunch of friends for a playdate with all of the kiddos.  It was loads of fun.  So much fun that when we left, Johnny fell asleep in the car about .5 miles from the park.  And he slept for over 3 hours! 

Ready for picture overload?

We parked in the wrong parking lot to begin with, and I couldn’t coax Johnny back into the car.  We wound up walking quite a ways to the swings.  Much to Johnny’s dismay, a few geese accompanied us on our walk.  He is not a big fan of animals.  He loves reading about animals, but if he sees one in person, and they move in his direction, he freaks out.  Made for an interesting walk.

IMG_2184IMG_2189

Jessie’s little boy, Finn, has a tendency to break off in a run trying to escape (much like someone else I know.  Ahem.).  She found a nifty spot to keep him contained.  I’ll have to remember this one!

IMG_2193IMG_2200

Johnny was really stoked when Fisher got to the park.  Here is he is trying to boss Fisher around and convince him to come down the slide with him.

IMG_2203IMG_2206

IMG_2207IMG_2212IMG_2213IMG_2226IMG_2232

How sweet is Miss Ruby??

IMG_2237IMG_2246IMG_2248

Not sure what was wrong, but her cry face is pretty darn cute.

IMG_2253

I figured getting a picture of everyone was futile with 5 adults and 9 kids.  This was as close as I got.

IMG_2255

Little Elliott had just woken up from his nap.  He was so stoic the whole time!

IMG_2257IMG_2260IMG_2268IMG_2274

Kristin showing Johnny how to cast a spell draw a J.

IMG_2277

Zoya’s haircut was so stinkin’ cute!  It made me really want to cut my hair off short.

IMG_2287IMG_2290IMG_2296

Whew!  How was that for a huge photo dump?  Nothing like a fun day at the park with beautiful weather and great friends!

Celebrating Sissy

Yesterday was Kristin’s birthday!  We hung out all day, and had so much fun.  I didn’t take my regular camera, but thought I’d share some pics from my phone.

Went went to Adam’s Mountain Café in Manitou Springs for breakfast.  I didn’t take many pictures there… Johnny was kind of a handful while we were there.  I did get a picture of her opening one of her presents.

IMG_6828

After Adam’s, we played around on the little rides near the arcade.  Johnny commandeered the rocket (or wock, as J calls it) and kicked anybody out who tried to come near.

IMG_6832IMG_6835IMG_6836IMG_6838IMG_6843

Right as we were trying to leave, Johnny got his head stuck in the window of the rocket.  It’s all fun & games until someone gets their head stuck in a rocket!

IMG_6844

If you were in Manitou yesterday morning, guaranteed you heard a shrieking bug making his way down the street.

IMG_6845

After Adam’s, we met up with our friend Melanie and her little girl, Onora, at the Manitou pool.  After, of course, we made a slight detour down the slide.

IMG_6847IMG_6849IMG_6851IMG_6852

A great time was had by all.

IMG_6861

This is what Johnny did the. entire. time.  He is saying “to infinity and beyond!”.

When we left, he was SO tuckered out he fell asleep mid-bite.

IMG_6868

Kristin & the kids came over for dinner after naps… This was my first allergen-free cake (no gluten, butter or eggs)!  It was actually quite delicious.

IMG_6873

What a fun day to celebrate Kristin!

A Beach Trip

I keep seeing people from home posting pictures from their beach trips.  Makes me miss sand & water.  Johnny has never been to the beach… I’m sure he would love it.  He loves anything to do with water!  Any time I start missing sand & water too much, we head up to Catamount Reservoir.

It was a powerful sight heading up to the reservoir.  The entrance to the reservoir goes right beside of the south side of the burn scar.  The picture below is a 180 degree panorama of Cascade.  You can see all of the mountains are burnt and this island of green with the town of Cascade in it.  Gives you a good view of just how close it came to those houses.  There is a medical specialist I see in Cascade & I spoke to him the other day – he said the bulldozers dug the fire line 200 yards from his house.  Crazy!

Untitled_Panorama1

Anyway, on to the hike.  We just took a quick hike in to get away from people.  =)

IMG_1962

Then we headed down to the “beach”.

IMG_1966

And more importantly, the water.

IMG_1980

This may be my most favorite picture ever:

IMG_1987

Johnny’s favorite activity of the day was taking rocks of all sizes & chucking them into the water.

IMG_1993IMG_2012

Followed by much celebration:

IMG_2015IMG_2028IMG_2031

Then we stopped the strenuous work of rock-chucking to eat a picnic lunch.

IMG_2039

Johnny made a new friend while eating lunch.  He had a little chipmunk that followed him around every step he took. He’s kinda hard to see in the pictures below… sort of blends into the background.  Just waiting for that sandwich to drop!

IMG_2044

IMG_2045

I could spend every day like this…. just me & the boys, water & sand.

Nature’s Beauty

When we were evacuated for the Waldo Canyon Fire, we headed down to Trinidad to stay at Doug’s parents new ranch house.  It was a nice retreat from the smoky air and chaos of the Springs.

IMG_1720

When the evacuation order was lifted and we went home, we quickly realized the smoke was still too bad to be in the house.  So we grabbed some camping gear and headed to the mountains – Lily Lake in the Sangre de Cristo mountains.

IMG_1827

We met up with Doug’s brothers to hang out.  This was Johnny’s first camping trip!  He was a very good helper with setting up the tent.

IMG_1727

Driving in a tent stake:

IMG_1731IMG_1733

With three uncles and two cousins there with us, there was lots of fun to be had.

IMG_1722

IMG_1773

IMG_1793

Miss Abbey was content to blow bubbles for Johnny to chase & pop!

IMG_1815

We went for a quick little hike.

Panorama

IMG_1744

Doug & I both agree, this valley is one of our favorite views in Colorado.

IMG_1748

It was very healing and refreshing to be in nature this weekend.  We had so much fun, we decided to take J camping again this coming weekend!