Colorado Vacation

In early October, Dawn, Makenzy and I drove to Colorado to spend a week with my high school friend, Van, and his family. We took the northern route, staying on Interstate 80 through California, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming. It was the first time the three of us had been in Wyoming. Dawn and I split the driving duties while Makenzy stayed comfortably in the backseat and fulfilled the role of our chief Googler. When we'd see something that piqued our curiosity, we would ask Makenzy to Google it for us. Some of the random things we learned along our trip:

  • Sinclair, the new gas station here in Stockton on Hammer and West Lane, comes from Sinclair, Wyoming
  • There are more people living in San Joaquin County than there are in all of Wyoming
  • OJ Simpson is serving time in Lovelock Correctional Facility in Lovelock, Nevada
  • Green River, Wyoming was the first city in the US to outlaw door-to-door sales
  • There is a band named after the aforementioned law, Green River Ordinance

We stopped in Fort Collins, Colorado to see my friend Rich and his family. He and his wife, Dorinna and their son Nate, showed us around Fort Collins. It wasn't enough time to see much of Fort Collins, but there was enough time to do some site seeing, and visit the famous Walrus Ice Cream, where Rich convinced me to try their "Mystery Flavor". If you ever find yourself in Fort Collins and someone suggests you visit Walrus, you definitely should, but stay away from the "Mystery Flavor". It was great to see the Ruh family.

Then we finally made it to the Saukam house and the week of fun got kicked off quickly! We had such a wonderful week hanging out with Van, Christine, Evan, and Liam. We hung out a lot and just talked and laughed, but we also did some typical touristy things.

We spent a day in Downtown Denver and walked around the wonderful 16th Street Mall. We also visited the Red Rocks Amphitheater, Cave of the Winds caverns and drove to the Pikes Peak Summit.

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We sure crammed a lot of fun (and food) into the week we spent with the Saukam family. It was so great to see them and spend some time enjoying the beauty of Colorado. Can't wait to get out there again!

Check out all of the pics here - http://www.flickr.com/photos/mattbeckwith/sets/72157637034930544/

 

Life's A Beach

Yesterday, we finally made it back to our favorite beach - Cowell Ranch Beach in Half Moon Bay, California. It was a little over cast but still a beautiful day. As is usually the case, there were hardly any other people on “our beach” the entire day. We had an awesome time just relaxing and just hanging out on the beach. We took a lot of pictures... here are the ones that made the cut.

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Here are some pictures we took here in 2002 and again in 2005.

A Witness to History

I know very little about baseball but enjoy watching it live. While in the great state of Texas I went to watch the Texas Rangers play the Chicago Cubs. I didn't know that the Rangers weren't doing so well. I didn't know that Sammy Sosa was playing, I didn't even know that he played for Texas. Needless to say, I was the only one in our group of 25 or so that didn't know Sammy Sosa had 599 career home runs and that tonight, in Arlington, against his former team, he could do what only four other ball players have ever done: hit 600 home runs. Okay, I was the only one in the ball park that didn't know that. sosa600

If you follow baseball you know how this story ends. Sammy, on a 1-2 pitch in the fifth inning, blasted his ceremonious 600th. I, along with some others in our group, left our seats to hang out at the left field wall, hoping for our chance at history. It was a crazy scene with just as many Cubs fans and Rangers fans and police officers everywhere - for protection of anyone that might catch the lucky prize. Just as the ball connected to the bat the place went crazy! Camera flashes exploded everywhere and were barely drowned out by the firework display.

After his standing ovations it was time to get the souvenirs. It was very interesting and very festive seeing the park employees taking the commemorative balls and shirts out of the boxes.

Click here for the pictures.

Is American Airlines Running Vista?

It's 8:30 in the morning in sunny Sacramento. I should be on an airplane approaching the Dallas-Fort Worth airport. All of the passengers boarded before 6:00 am and it seemed as if we would be heading out quickly. Then, the pilot came on the cabin radio and said that the aircraft had been "turned off" the night before and the technicians were now having a hard time re-starting all of the computer systems. After a complete re-boot of the plane (several minutes), they powered everything up and discovered that the computer was not going to work - I wonder if American Airlines is running Vista! So, all of the passengers de-planed (I love this term), retrieved luggage (shouldn't it be de-checked luggage) and got in line at the AA ticket counter to re-book another flight.

An hour of standing / sitting / standing in this line and what can I do? Well, fire up the PowerBook, of course... after all, Sacramento International Airport has free WiFi.

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*** 8:32 am update ***

Just as I finished publishing this entry a nice woman working for American Airlines walked down the line asking everyone if Dallas was their final stop. I was the only one left who was not traveling any further than DFW so she plucked me from the line, much to the disgruntlement of the others, and took me right up to the counter and got me checked in for the 11:30 am departure. Coincidence? Perhaps. Or perhaps it was the power of my blog entry that got me plucked out of that line, that line that had at least a few more hours left.

Tired? Yes, but it could have been a lot worse than five and a half hours.

*** 12:30 pm update ***

Well, 11:30 came and went. At 11:50 the agent announced that our replacement plane hadn't yet left San Francisco. The departure time on the gate board now reads 12:50 pm. Yikes!

San Francisco Trip

Mak finally got her belated birthday trip to San Francisco. And, just as she planned, we had lunch at the Rain Forest Cafe and then hung out at Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf. The girls really liked watching the sea lions fight on the docks and also liked watching the street performers. One of the performers, Marcus Raymond, did some pretty cool tricks like escaping from a straightjacket and solving a rubik cube in less than 1 minute (after a kid from the audience scrambled it up real good). baybridge2

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Check out the pics here.

Road Trip to Hornbrook

So many of my summers growing up were spent up at the R-Ranch in beautiful Hornbrook in Northern California. Even though spring is creeping up on us we were still a little nervous planning a trip up there this early in the year. With all of the snow on Black Butte and Mt. Shasta it looked like it was going to be cold. Lucky for us the weather was awesome and we had a blast hanging out with the Deckos. The Property at Hornbrook fits the Decko family very well and their home is awesome! Picture 1

We even made a trip to Ashland which looked exactly the same as it did the last time we were there (probably 10 years ago).

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Check out the pics from our trip here.

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Christina took some great pics of The Property in December and January when it was snowing and asked me to publish them (it would take her weeks to do it over dial-up).Check out her pics here.

Snow Time

The Beckwith and Havens families had a blast up in Soda Springs this weekend. We had a great cabin and the weather was awesome - clear skies and no wind (until Sunday). There was also a great areafor the kids to go tubin' and for me to get a few runs on the snowboard. sodaspringslift1 sodaspringslift2

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Emily, Makenzy and Junior getting ready to go out on Saturday. Check out the pictures from this weekend here.