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.


Sick Days

Johnny has been sick for two weeks.  He’s feeling better for the most part now.  But when he first got sick, our back yard was being landscaped, and he was too sick to go play anywhere – like the gym, park, etc.  It’s hard keeping a 2 yr old boy entertained inside!  Doug happened to be on vacation one day, so we decided to go for a hike, and eat a picnic in the shade.








Not too shabby for a sick day, huh?

7 Miles!

We went for another hike today (Sunday).  This time we went to Waldo Canyon.  I had never been there before.  The trail is a big loop & it’s right around 7 miles.  7 miles may not seem like a lot for most of you.  But this was definitely the most I’ve done in about a year.  My back & hips held up really well!  Very exciting. Wow, that makes me sound old. 


The first part of this trail was through lots of big trees. 


Doug brought his camera along, so *gasp* there are pictures of me in this post, too.

Pretty sure the Bug drank half of the water we brought along with us.  He loves drinking out of a Camelbak.


Family photo op.

Who needs fancy trekking poles when you have the handle to an old shovel?  It is Earth Day weekend, after all.  =)



Making the magic happen (or trying):

This next picture was taken after we got home…. Looks like someone was taking notes. 

This is the picture I was working on… a 180 degree panorama of the valley we were hiking around.


I love all of these family photos! But the Bug is distracted in every. single. one.



You hike & hike & hike & just like that, you pop out near a road.


I love these jewels of wilderness & open space in the midst of (or right outside of) the city.




We like to go on hikes, if you can’t tell.


No matter how cranky or tired I am on a Saturday morning…


Once we get out into the sunshine & fresh air…


I feel a healing, of sorts, begin to take place.


I think Doug & Johnny do, too.


Johnny is going through a new phase of independence. 


If I’m being honest, it scares the crap out of me.


Wanting to be free & not hold my hand to do things.


To figure it out for himself.


And discover the world on his own terms.


I know this is normal, this is good.


But I can’t help but feel sometimes, like I just want to stick him in a bubble.  =)


At least when he gets tired, he knows we are still here to carry him on.


Yes to Manual

Manual camera settings, that is.  If you are a serious photog, you may want to just skip this post.  It will make you cringe, for sure.  =) 

I have a DSLR camera that I’ve been too lazy to figure out how to use… I’ve just kept it on the Program Auto setting.  Lately, I’ve been frustrated by how dark the pictures look, and how they just don’t turn out that great.  TOTAL user error, I know.  I’ve resorted to using my iPhone to take pictures, because they seem to come out more vivid.  Super lame!

I decided to just put on my big girl panties & figure out the DSLR. Today, we went for a hike at Red Rock Canyon (same place I blogged about HERE, where all of the pictures were taken with my iPhone).

However, I got so intensely focused on how aperture affected my pictures, that I completely forgot about ISO.  It was set at 1600 for the entire hike. Doh!  Lots of the pictures were over exposed, but there were a few good ones in there.  I’m pretty confident I won’t make that mistake again!

Bottom line – are they the best pictures ever taken? Definitely not. Are they significantly better than I’ve taken on Auto? Indeed.

I’m just taking baby steps, learning about one piece at a time. 


I’m not sure why the boys looks so stoic in this picture?

This was a really cool trail we’ve never been on before… there are tons of technical climbing routes along this path.


That’s the Garden of the Gods off in the distance.


Class 2 exposure!  =)  I had to bite my tongue to not say “You be careful with my baby!”


Ok, so this next picture is not great at all with the big sun spot… I just wanted to show you how Johnny sleeps with his eyes open.  He is totally asleep in this picture.  Creepy!


What I love about Red Rock Canyon, is that it’s this great open space in the middle of the city.  You hike in a ways & you feel like you are in the wilderness… but every now and then civilization peeks through your view.  Wealthy civilization, but civilization nonetheless.  =)


Hopefully, the pictures will just get better from here on out.  =)

What You Missed in 2011

I promised a review of the year thus far… so here you go!  I think it’s safe to say this post will be broken up into at least 2 separate posts.  I don’t want to overload you too much at once.  =)

At the beginning of 2011, Johnny was 11 months old.  As soon as he realized he could have an opinion & assert his will at mealtime, he pretty much stopped eating anything doesn’t taste awesome (read: vegetables).  This boy is one PICKY eater!!  I guess he gets that from his mama.


Days were filled with exploring & pushing around anything with wheels.  I used to think the choice of whether to play with dolls or trucks was somewhat nurtured.  No way!  This kid gravitated towards things with wheels from day one!


AND he loves technology.  Can he possibly get any more like his parents?


On 1/28/11, Johnny turned one! We made cupcakes the week after his birthday, as he was sick on his actual birthday.  We didn’t make a big deal out of it, just the three of us.  The cupcakes were gluten, dairy & soy free.  He wasn’t really impressed.


But it WAS good enough to do a face plant.




Spring came along & we spent our days entertaining grandparents:


Watching sports with dad:


Telling Grandpa Mojica a story:


Hanging out with cousins:



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In the Spring, mama got a jogging stroller so we spent lots of days like this:




Or just hiking in the woods:


One day we were shopping at Target and we passed these big blue balls.  I can’t remember (sucky memory strikes again!) if we showed it to him or if he asked for it.  But once he got it in his little hands, he wouldn’t let go – literally!  And so began his love affair with balls.  (Ooooo that just sounds funny….)  This child can’t get enough of playing with any & every kind of ball – tennis ball, football, wall ball, soccer ball, you name it… he is throwing it!  Future NBA player?  I’m sure of it.


He is all boy for sure.  Always getting into stuff.  This shirt describes it best:  “I tried to be good, but I got bored.”  That’s my Johnny Bug in a nutshell!


And that’s what we did during Winter & Spring this year!! Pt. 2 with Summer & Fall will be posted soon!