A Desert Adventure

  Superman, the boys and I are here in Moab, Utah.  
Our first day here, we checked out Arches National Park. 

 Millions of years ago, ocean waves covered this area. 

 Doesn’t this look like something from Star Wars?  The ground here looks like sand in this picture, but it is actually something they call “slick rock”. When it rains they say the water will come through so fast, causing extreme flooding, due to the ground not being able to absorb the rain.

 This is Balancing Rock. I hope the people in the foreground help give you some perspective of how huge this is. Mind boggling, really. 

 Surprisingly, not many people out. 

 Delicate Arch. Doesn’t seem like that big a deal…

  Until you throw some people under there!  

 Trying to create a typical tourist photo, but not quite capturing the right effect. 

 Double Arches. Imagine million of years ago, when the ocean began to dry up, leaving behind miles thick layers of salty sediment.  

 Then as years pass, with wind, fault shifts and rain, the unstable salt layers begin to erode away. 

 The erosion leaves us these amazing arches. I think this landscape reminds me of the roadrunner cartoons. Beep Beep!

 And she conquers the world! Ok. So I really didn’t conquer the world, but I did scramble up this here rock face. Going up wasn’t the problem. It’s the coming down that provided much humor for Superman.

 Petroglyph drawings from the Ute Indians thousands of years ago.  

 The next day, we take “The Land Before Time” Canyoneering trip. Canyoneering is the process of traveling through steep canyons by hiking, scrambling, climbing, swimming, and  rappelling.  

 Ok so this isn’t the exact trail we took, but it is close. 

 There were many very narrow slots that we had to shimmy through or use what they call bridging. Bridging is your hands are on the opposite wall of your feet. You form a bridge over the water and “walk” your hands and feet to the other side.

  This was a very narrow slot we had to get through. On the left is the canyon wall and to the right, there is a petrified tree. We had to climb to the top of the tree, turn around, carefully place feet on wall,  then jump into the chest deep water. Hitting your chin on the tree as you jumped down would have caused great pain. 

 This is one of three rappelling we had to do. This particular one was 130 feet down. Yup 130 Feet!

 Do you see the rope? Old Mar shimmied on down that thing…No Problem! Actually, rappelling is not scary. I feel perfectly safe. I’m all harnessed up, safely secure with all sorts of ropes, carabiners, special knots and guys paying attention to all the details. We rappelled down a 75 ft drop and a 125ft drop. 

 As soon as we got to the bottom of this 130 ft canyon, we had to squeeze through a small crevice into waist high stinky water.  

 One of the many fascinating things I learned on this adventure was the durability of Mother Nature through thousands, even millions of years. This juniper tree (although not photographed well) is said to be thousands of years old. Thousands! That BLOWS MY MIND!  

 We saw a small pool of water, which our guide said is fed by a natural spring, so it has always had water in it. In this pool were tiny little critters that he said are same as they were in the prehistoric age. This area has not been ruined by developers, roads, railways….people.  

 It is always changing, but yet thankfully stays the same. My hope is that my fellow humans will continue to revere this land we live in. As for here in Moab, every day brings something new. Maybe it is 110 degrees outside today and the next day 90 degrees. On Monday a dry riverbed, and yet on Tuesday a roaring flood. To think that at one time a long, long time ago, this was somewhat flat land with an ocean covering it. And here it is today. Wow. 

Friends we are so blessed to have this at our disposal. Take care of it. Enjoy it.

Thanks for dropping by!  

 
 

They Said I Do! Let’s Celebrate!

  They said I Do!  
 Let’s Celebrate! 

 

 Yes, the wedding was beautiful, but I think what overwhelmed me the most were the people who chose to come. 
 We so appreciated those friends who drove many hours to get to Charleston. 

 My beautiful friend, Cynthia, is one of those dear friends who has moved away, but is still so close to my heart. So glad her sister, Beth, on the right, was her date for the wedding. 

 It was great meeting Tyler’s family whom many came all the way from Texas. 

 Of course, having my family there was such a blessing. They traveled from California, Pittsburgh, Boston, Florida, Georgia and many hours away in South Carolina. I love you guys! 

 Ok. Enough of all that stuff…let’s talk about the food.  Relish Catering did an amazing job! Along with these tomato-mozzarella skewers, during cocktail hour the staff served mini pimento cheese sandwiches and pulled pork biscuits.

 For my non-southern friends, this lovely appetizer was bite-sized shrimp n’ grits. I hear from those who were able taste these that they were deelishus! For the main course, guests filled their plates from several stations: salad, carved beef and pasta topped with grilled vegetables, chicken and or shrimp. 

 The kids decided on a glorious selection of cupcakes. As you can see, they had a small cake to do the ceremonial cutting… 

 BUT the cupcakes…oh my goodness! 

 Everyone had a fun time! 

 Some were busy making silly selfies.  

 Some had the most handsome dates. 

 

 There were tables set up under the tent and around the venue, but the cousins decided the ground was a perfect spot for a picnic. 

 Finally, the bride and groom make their appearance.  

 After a quick introduction, Mr. and Mrs. Tyler Andrews take to the dance floor. 

  This is not the same swaying back and forth pseudo- dancing that Superman and I did 28 years ago. 

 Oh no. These two are wonderful swing dancers. In fact, Tyler is so swift on his feet, he gently swept Mary Claire’s gown train out of the way or stepped over it with ease, when the bustle came loose. 

 They were awesome! 

 Her brother Thomas blessed the food. (My sweet boy.) 

 Then the party began. 

 Ok. So there were quite a few young ones who knew how to dance. I give them that. 

 But there were some old folks who knew how to shake a leg too! 

 Before things got out of hand, some very special toasts were made to a very special couple. 

 The Best Man recalled how even as a young kids, Tyler always wanted the best out of himself, in school and sports particularly. And here Tyler was now, with the best girl as his wife. (Awwww…) 

 The Maid-of-Honor told everyone about how she is the person she is today because of the close relationship and influence her cousin Mary Claire had on her growing up. 

 Of course, Superman gave words of love, wisdom and… 

 humor. 

 Heres to a beautiful couple and blessed marriage! 

 After a secret practice session a few days before, the father-daughter dance begins. A little wind beneath their wings…. 

 Then some Rockin Out! 

 Guitars were smashed. 

 Take notes fans! 

 Dad taught her everything she knows. 

 Oh yeah…Stirring the Pot. 

 Girls don’t be jealous! My man has moves! 

 Then they wrapped it up with a sweet slow dance. He loves his baby girl. 

 Tyler took his mom to the floor. 

 The Texas Two Step never looked so good. 

 Chris the DJ/dance instructor taught the guests the basic steps to swing.  

 The guys have this…no problem. 

 The girls are ready! 

 The young at heart got their swing on. 

 My Aunt Gemmy showed those whipper snappers how to do it. 

 Emma was a princess at the ball. 

 SHOUT! 

 So many moves 

 So much singing 

 So much fun. 

 There was great dancing like this…. 

 Then there were moves like THIS! 

 And this! What the heck is this?!? 

 Unfortunately the night needed to come to an end.  

 With a wave of glow sticks, the married couple says good-bye. 

 Congratulations! Much love and happiness to you!

I know I’m a bit biased, but this wedding was amazing. And there was no way it could have happened without the wedding coordinator, Holly Simpson of A Charleston Event. She was organized beyond belief and kept the show rolling with a firm and loving hand. Her biggest goal was making sure the bride and groom were happy. Additionally, she helped Mary Claire and Tyler with the major decisions, set up and packed it all away. Thank you Holly!

And to you friend, thanks again for letting me share one of the happiest days of my life.