Count Down: 5 Things I Miss About New Mexico

Count Down: 5 Things I Miss About New Mexico

Viva, Nuevo Mexico!

When we started our journey 4 years ago and left the “Land of Entrapment” I was so excited to leave. Honestly, I just wanted to see more of what was out in this great country. We have lived in 6 other states and I have really enjoyed seeing the sights and meeting new people. We have been able to do some really cool things but I never expected that traveling would give me such a deep appreciation for my homeland of, Nuevo Mexico. I have compiled a list of five things I miss the most about The Land of Enchantment.

5. The Balloon Fiesta. The fiesta is something that I have been going to since I can remember. Waking up super early to catch the mass ascension or bundling up at dusk for the balloon glow. It’s always fun and exciting to see the balloons go up and even if you don’t attend the fiesta, you can pretty much see the balloons all over Albuquerque for the entire duration of the event. The balloons add an extra flair to the already amazing sunsets over the Sandias and they add excitement to your early morning commute.

4. The Albuquerque Zoo and Bio Park. My kids love to go to the zoo and aquarium. We could seriously go every day. The only problem I have found out on the road is that the zoo’s in some places are extremely expensive. We have visited some really nice zoos, for instance, the Memphis Zoo was out of this world, but it’s not a zoo we would visit often. The Albuquerque Zoo and Bio Park are pretty affordable and I can attest that they are one of the top zoos we have visited out of all the states we have been in. We love us a zoo day and the Albuquerque Zoo is one of our favorites!

3. The Sandia Mountains. Let me first say that I have seen some pretty majestic mountains, we lived in Utah for crying out loud! But, there is something so invitingly magical about the Sandias. Maybe it is because I have spent many days growing up hiking in the trails at the top of the crest, or riding up the tramway and looking down on the gorgeous city lights below. Maybe it’s Tinkertown, the quaint museum on the way up the mountain that is made of glass bottles and filled with interesting trinkets and antique toys. Maybe it’s the way the sun peaks over the top in the morning, or the way red hue you see at sunset. Whatever it is, the Sandia Mountains are a sight to behold and any New Mexican will tell you just how useful they are for directional purposes.

2. The food. In all of my travels across America, I have to say that not one state can compare with my home state. Don’t get me wrong, I have favorites in every state but there is nothing like a plate of red chile ribeye enchiladas with a side of beans and rice and a warm sopapilla. I have to stop into La Cucina Azul every time I am in Albuquerque to get my fill. There is also no one that makes breakfast burritos quite like Blakes or Twisters and I cannot go without mentioning the taco burgers and green chile cheese fries from Bob’s Burgers and the stuffed sopapillas at El Modelo. All I can say is yummy.

1. My family and friends. They are what I miss the most about New Mexico. Almost all of my family and most of, my husband, Adam’s family live there. You really take for granted how great it can be to have family around. Watching my kids grow up without their cousins and everyone missing out on their big milestones has been rough but it’s always nice when the stars align and we can spend special occasions together in New Mexico.

I didn’t take this photo, I just love all the people in it!

Seeing all the wondrous places the United States has to offer has been amazing but I have to give credit to New Mexico for the majestic beauty and the rich history it has. No matter where in the world I go, I will always look forward to coming home to some great views, delicious food, and mi familia.

We have Moved!

We have Moved!

This has been a super busy time for our family. We left Idaho which was our home for the last 3 months and we are back in Oklahoma. It is so weird to be back where we started when we first decided to live life on the road!

I have to say, I did not think I would be so cool with coming back here but God has given me such peace in this whole transition. We were first slated to go to Pheonix which everyone was quite excited about. We were freezing our tushies in Idaho and the thought of trading our snow boots for flip flops was very appealing. Apparently, it is snowbird season in Pheonix and every RV spot under the sun has already been taken for the winter not to mention many of them are 55+ communities. That dream quickly turned in to a nightmare and all I could do was pray. I prayed and I asked God to deal with it. He did, he sent us to Oklahoma and when I got the text from Adam I was completely at peace with the idea.

We ended up taking 3 days to drive to Oklahoma to drop off the RV and then another 2 days to drive to Albuquerque for Thanksgiving. The kids didn’t mind too much because we were able to make a pit stop at The Water Zoo, one of our favorite things to do in Oklahoma. Plus, we had Amma come along and keep us company!

Kid Approved Summer Destinations In Oklahoma

Kid Approved Summer Destinations In Oklahoma

swim in the Blue Hole

So this is a little out of left field because it has been about a year since we were in Oklahoma, but since summer is upon us and I did spend a good amount of time there, I have compiled a list of things my kiddos loved doing. So if you are in the great state of Oklahoma and don’t know what you are going to do with the kids this summer, I hope this comes in handy!

  1. My kids love a water park! One that we have frequented is, The Water Zoo. It is located in Clinton, Oklahoma. The Water Zoo is an indoor waterpark. They have a large wave pool attached to a lazy river. They also have tons of splash pads and three 4 story water slides. One great thing about this place is that there is a Holiday Inn Express and Suites right next door and you can purchase Water Zoo tickets with your stay. Another plus, they serve free breakfast!
  2. Another great place my kids love to visit is the Aquarium. My boys love seeing all the bright colored fish swimming around. The Oklahoma Aquarium in Jenks is one of the nicer ones we have visited.  They have over 100 exhibits and many of them are interactive. What kid doesn’t love touching the sting rays, or feeding the turtles?
  3. Once you have visited the aquarium, you have got to go check out a zoo! My kids really enjoyed going to the Tulsa Zoo. One of my favorite things about this zoo is how they have designed the exhibits to give a very natural atmosphere. I love how they flow almost into each other. They have a lot to do, so plan to spend the day when you visit!
  4. The Blue Hole in Salina Oklahoma is a hidden gem. The sparkling cool swimming hole is great for swimming, camping, or picnicking. It is a short drive down a beautiful country road and surrounded by picturesque wilderness. The water stays cool in the heat of the summer and it’s a great place to let the kids cool off!
  5. This next place is actually just outside Oklahoma the neighboring state of Arkansas, but it’s an awesome place that is worth mentioning. Just a short drive into the Ozarks you will find a quaint little place called, Siloam Springs. They have a kayak park that is so much fun! The park is situated along the Illinois River and has been engineered for kayakers. Canoes and tubes are also great for enjoying this park. The setting is picturesque and a definite must see.

These are just a few of the things we liked to do in Oklahoma. It’s a great place to be outdoors if you can stand the heat and the humidity. What are some of your favorite places to visit in the summer?

Utah, Beauty and Majesty

Utah, Beauty and Majesty

Mount Nebo
Nebo Loop National Scenic Byway

I am from New Mexico and one of the main things I missed from home when we were in Oklahoma was the mountains. There is no shortage of mountains here in Utah. The majesty and beauty of the mountains in every season has blown me away. I have hiked them in the summer, watched their color turn and glow through the fall. I watched them transform in to white wonders in the winter. I am so glad I was able to catch a glimpse of spring before I set off to Tennessee.

Although I admired the beauty outside my doorstep everyday, driving through the state of Utah gives you such a sense of wonderment. Utah has so much to offer when it comes to outdoor views. They have everything from rich forests and majestic mountains to vast desert with wondrous rock formations. Utah is one state that is truly captivating.

Spring Break

Spring Break

We had the pleasure of hosting this years spring break family trip. We had a blast in Provo, Park City, Draper, and Salt Lake City.

family at Moochie's

Moochie’s was amazing, I had the Eggplant Parmigiana sandwich, everyone else had  Philly Cheesesteak. Everyone gave it a thumbs up!

The Loveland Living Planet Aquarium is amazing, my boys could stay in there for hours looking at all the fish. They also have birds, butterflies, and sloths!

family at aquarium
Family in the mouth of a beast

We also took a short drive up to Herriman, Near South Jordan, to see The Real UP House! Its a replica home from the Disney-Pixar movie, UP. We couldn’t go in, as it is a private residence, but it was still pretty cool to see.

The Real UP House

DIY RV Vanity Corner

DIY RV Vanity Corner

So lately I have been obsessed with redecorating my fifth wheel. I took the advice of a fellow blogger, rvinspiration.com, and joined an RV Decorating group on Facebook. People are so creative and share amazing ideas! We just purchased our RV last summer so it is still brand new. I haven’t really done too much as far as decorating goes. The decor is brown and blah. I guess brown is a very common color in the RV world because I keep hearing and seeing posts about getting rid of the brown. My entire RV is a different shade of brown, but all I really want to do is lighten the mood in here.

One of the first things I have had to add is a place for me to do my make up. I was using the bathroom but it was not quite working out. I moved to my bedroom closet door, it has a mirror, but it was so dark in there. Even with all the window shades up and the lights on it was just too dark. My husband ordered some lighting to put on the mirror but we decided to get a new mirror and put it up rather than messing with the closet doors. I love it! It looks great and I get to sit on my bed and be comfortable so that works out. I also ordered the cutest little white Command shelves. Command makes some really cool things! I love the shelves, they’re a little small but they look cute in my corner and complete my vanity area nicely.

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I bought the mirror at Walmart and ordered the lights and shelves from Amazon. Here are the links for the shelves and lights.  The shelves come in another size and color.

Command Shelves

Led Vanity Lights

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Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park

img_6148Last summer we were able to head up north and spend a weekend at Yellowstone National Park. It was amazing! We didn’t plan ahead so we weren’t able to take our fifth wheel up. We stayed at Gray Wolf Inn and Suites in West Yellowstone, Montana. The lodge was really nice, and super close to the entrance. A bit pricey, but thats what we get for not planning ahead. I totally fell in love with the town, it was so touristy but in a mountain man sort of way.

Once we drove in to the park the views just blew me away! We got to see a group of animals grazing in a field. It was an amazing sight. People were out of their vehicles taking pictures of them and walking right up to the herd and the animals were not scared at all. YellowstoneWildlife.jpg

We loved seeing the geysers and the sulfuric pools. I was a little reluctant to go down the trails since I have two young boys, but they did very well! We also made sure to visit the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center. Gray Wolf Inn and Suites included tickets to the park in our package. The kids really enjoyed that. The bears really put on a show for us that day!

Family at Yellowstone 2We only spent two days in Yellowstone and that was not enough. I would have loved to just be able to sit and soak in the beauty and majesty of the scenery. I definitely will make the trip back sometime and next time I will plan ahead!

Life in The Sierra

Life in The Sierra

Sierra

We have been living in our RV full time for 6 months now. I thought leaving my 4 bedroom 3 bathroom house in New Mexico to travel with my husband was the craziest thing I would ever do. Never thought we would be living full time in an RV! Honestly though, I am happy in it. We have been traveling for 2 years and before we got the Sierra we would have to pack and unpack constantly, no fun! Now, we just pack up our home and head out! It’s so nice to have a space that is home wherever we go!

We made it through summer like a breeze and we are half way through our first winter and I have to say I’m impressed. Although, winter in Utah this year has been pretty mild, we have had some cold nights and snowy days. I am so glad we opted for the large bunkhouse for the kids! Believe it or not, we are comfortable. We have plenty of room, except Juliet. She is my 11 year old hoarder of sentimental objects and collector of everything you could possibly collect. She is having some adjustment issues, but she will figure it out lol.

If you have ever considered spending some time traveling in an RV, I definitely recommend you do it at some point in your life. Although I do miss my house, I have learned that my home is wherever my crazy family is, and now we have a place to take with us!

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