Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Waterfall, a County Fair, and PIGS!!

Day 6 of our Great Road Trip found us still in Steamboat Springs, with our cousins Winston, Cindy, and Luke Walker.  After a relaxing morning and an incredible breakfast made by Cindy, the six of us took off to see the sites and sounds of the surrounding area.  We started off with a short drive through Steamboat looking at houses and marveling at the beauty of the aspen trees, the lush valleys, and the high mountain peaks.  We decided to go hiking at Fish Creek Falls to look at the incredible waterfall (which Amanda loves) and enjoy the cool morning.  Unfortunately our pics are on the other camera and we can't show you how amazing the waterfall was crashing down onto the rocks near the bridge which crossed the river.

After lunch, Cindy, Amanda and MJ went to downtown Steamboat to walk around and check out all the little shops.  They went into an art gallery and enjoyed seeing all the local paintings and bronze statues of "western life."

Around 3pm we all loaded up and headed west to Hayden, CO, to see Rolle's grandkids participate in the Routt County Fair.  We met Brian and Kira Walker Ripley and their 3 boys (Tanner, Walker, and Landon).  Tanner was participating in the pig showing competition with 90 others pigs!  He walked away with "Reserve Grand Champion" which means that his pig won 2nd overall!  We enjoyed seeing Colorado's ranch lifestyle.  The drive to Hayden was beautiful....more flat ranch land with hay fields filled with cows and horses.  The road was peppered with barns and small farm houses....much more rural than the ski resort town of Steamboat. 

We came back home (Winston's and Cindy's house) sunburned, tired and ready for supper.  Makaylan was a trooper all day!  She does well in her carseat, and has been happy and "talkative" when we get her out to play.    
MJ sleeping at the Routt County Fair (notice the pig in the background)

Silverthorne, CO, welcome sign

Kremmling, CO, welcome sign as we drove north on HWY 40.

One of the picturesque barns we passed on our drive.

Eisenhower Tunnel on I-70 west as we drove from Denver to Steamboat.

This was the view from Chipotle's, as we ate lunch in Silverthorne on Tuesday.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Hittin' the Road

Today is day 5 of the Great Road Trip! We have been weaving in and out of the mountains and it has been absolutely breathtaking!! In the last two days we have driven 586 miles. Makaylan has done incredible and is becoming quite the little traveler. She’s had only one rough night, but we also changed time zones. We are thankful that she does so well in her car seat, and the mountain elevation doesn’t seem to bother her too much. I (Amanda), on the other hand, have had some altitude headaches, but it’s nothing that some Advil can’t cure.

I’m going to let the pictures tell the story over the last few days.

We spent 3 days visiting the Richardsons in Amarillo, TX.
They were Amanda's youth ministers my senior year of high school,
and I babysat their boys. They are now 16 and 14.

Little Danny turned 16 this year...yikes

Danny and Josh holding Makaylan.  They loved her :)

Yes, I used to babysit these "kids." Danny is 6'2" and Joshy is 6'5"

Kristie, Dan, Danny, Joshy and Makaylan...we had such a blast with them.

While we were in Amarillo, Mark and Kandy Persall came to visit.
They were Amanda's supervisors while in Taiwan.  We had
an amazing time chatting and letting them meet MJ. (She wasn't too happy with
this picture.)

Yesterday (Monday) we finally made it to Colorado.
We stayed with Chris' cousin Rolle Walker. We
enjoyed our time with him and loved his hospitality.

Pike's Peak, Colorado Springs, CO.

Yes, those would be snow capped the middle of August! Amanzing!!

Chirs, Rolle, and Makaylan...we had a wonderful time

Malaylan talking to her daddy :)  SO cute!! (This is just bonus :)  )

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Wide Open Spaces

This morning we left Jerry and Lacy Ritchie's house in Mansfield, TX and headed west.  We had such a good time with them, and they enjoyed seeing Makaylan and loving on her.  They had this cute dog named Amber who absolutely loved MJ.  She wasn't too fond of Chris, but she loved our that made her OK :) :)  The Ritchies were incredibly hospitable to us, and we enjoyed our time with them.

Now, we are out in the wide spaces of West Texas heading towards Amarillo.  We will stay with Danny and Kristie Richardson. Dan was Amanda's youth minister when I was a Senior.  Their boys, "Little" Danny (who is now over 6 feet tall) and Josh, were my little shadows during that time.  It's been amazing how close we (the Taylors) have stayed with this family, and it will be fun to spend the weekend with them.  We will also get to see Kandy Persall, who was my supervisor while in Taiwan and now my mentor.  She always has such amazing wisdom, so I'm looking forward to gleaming some motherly advice from her.

Here are some pics we have gotten so far...enjoy

MJ discovered a new noise...grunting :)

Amanda's Office

Wide open spaces

The lone building

Friday, August 12, 2011

Great Road Trip...2011's been 3 months since we were blessed with our little angel, Makaylan, so we decided we would introduce her to our nomadic lifestyle.  Chris and I have had a VERY busy summer filled with school and studying, so we decided to reward ourself with a two week road trip out west.  Chris has several aunts, uncles, and cousins in Colorado that I have never met, so we are headed out there to visit them.  We plan to stop along the way to visit with friends of mine and introduce MJ to people along the way.  We are excited to see how she will do...especially being in her car seat for 5-6 hours a day.  So good (as long as Chris keeps driving).

Tonight is our first stop in Mansfield, TX.  We will stay with Jerry and Lacy Ritchie, who are Chris' uncle and aunt (his mom's brother).  We are excited to introduce them to their new niece and spend some time with them.  Tomorrow we will head on to Amarillo, TX.

We will give daily updates of our travels, so be looking for new posts.  I'm sure there will be many memories to share as we head out to the wild blue yonder.  Pray for Makaylan that she will feel safe and comfortable as we stop along the way.  It's SO good to be back on the road again! :) :)  
She loves the sites :)

Our fearless driver :)