Tuesday, January 14, 2014


We've discovered  a new favorite place to go in Albuquerque. I'd been there as a kid and remembered it as being really fun, but I didn't think that Erik was old enough to appreciate it so we hadn't really planned on going any time soon. Then, one day we were going to be in ABQ for the afternoon and called Mom Mower and Aunt Abby to see if they wanted to meet up with us somewhere in town. They chose Explora, and we decided to give it a try.
To my surprise, Erik loved Explora more than he's loved any other place in his life. I've never seen him so engaged in anything for such a long time. He was fascinated by all the interesting things around him and actually played and explored clear through his whole nap time without every acting tired in the slightest. We've been back several times now, with Nate and Kate and with my family and it has yet to fail to hold the same fascination for all of us. I won't even try to show you all the neat exhibits and activities, here's just a few shots to give you an idea of what this place is like.
Exploring the effect of slope on the trajectory of a moving object.
Animating a movie with Aunt Abby.
One of the most beloved areas, TRAINS!
Drawing circles with Daddy.
Another favorite; giant bubbles!
Exploring electricity.
With even more exhibits on light, sound, water, music, air flow, color, etc we've killed many hours here already and plan to do so again soon!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Happy Holidays!

Well, I guess now that all the major winter holidays are passed, it's about time to tell you what we did with them. 
We had a really nice Thanksgiving. We spent the holiday in Stanley with Ethan's family, and had a really great time. Kett and Cam were there with their new little guy and we all ate like crazy and just enjoyed one another's company. I neglected to take any pictures though, sorry about that!
Christmas was wonderful. The weekend before, my cousin Ed was getting married in Albuquerque so I had nearly all of my family staying at our house for a few days, so it was almost like Christmas. Ethan only got one day off for Christmas which meant we didn't have time to travel anywhere, but luckily for us Mom and Dad Mower live an easy drive away and we got to go back out there and share Christmas with them. It was really nice and relaxed. Mom had made mountains of Christmas goodies and for Christmas dinner she made tamales and posole so I think we all gained about a million pounds while we were there; everything was SO yummy! Erik loved the tree and the lights and everything! He was careful never to show it to the camera, but he really had a good time. 
The afternoon/evening of Christmas Eve, Ethan Abby, and Dad went up to Santa Fe to see the lights and luminarias in the plaza and to do the "canyon walk". The canyon walk takes you up one of the older streets in town where everyone has tons of luminarias lit and there are lots of neat art galleries and other fun things to see. The whole town walks up the street and enjoys the sense of Christmas and community. We did this our first Christmas after we got married, but hadn't been back since, so we really wanted to go back. At the last minute I decided that I just wasn't feeling up to walking up the hill in the cold so I didn't end up going, but judging by Ethan's pictures it was sure beautiful. 

 Christmas morning we explored the contents of our stockings, opened presents, and had cinnamon rolls and other yummy things for breakfast. I think Erik really liked the presents, but he was careful not to give away his feelings by smiling or doing anything as obvious as that. Oh well...

Best smile we got all morning.

Abby bought Dad a can of whipped cream for Christmas, and Erik was just as thrilled as Dad was. He immediately ran to Grandpa and held out a finger to be filled with the good stuff. Now I know what to get him next year!
We had to go back home that night, but we had so much fun with our Mower family!
New Year's Eve was pretty quiet around here. We made some munchies and watched a movie. We hadn't really planned to, but we ended up being awake at midnight and learned that all the engines down in the rail year blow their whistles for the whole first minute of the New Year. It was kinda fun to hear!