Monthly Archives: August 2013

New Mexico redux

Long time readers of this blog might remember our New Mexico adventures from last summer – racing ducks in Deming, eating green chile in Hatch, seeing a big rattlesnake at Tent Rocks National Monument, the fest-which-shall-not-be-named in Santa Fe, and lots of family time. Even though we seem to have poor timing with regards to weather (Chicago in January?! New Mexico in August?!), we were all thrilled to head back into New Mexico. At the first Blake’s sighting, Carson said, “Hello, New Mexico!”

After driving through Carson National Forest, we stopped for the day in Taos, where we saw the Kit Carson home and toured the Taos Pueblo. Since we were so close (a super short six hour drive!), we took a nice detour up to Colorado Springs for some more time with good friends. It was a short visit since we had to get back down to Albuquerque where we left the bus for our flight back to Ohio.

When we got back from the family reunion (glad we didn’t try to make that trek in the bus!), we decided that it was time for a little reality check. Government cover ups? Unexplained phenomenon? The truth is out there and we were determined to dig a little deeper, so we set our sites on Roswell. What did we find? Aliens, of course!

The skies clearly aren’t safe, so we headed the other direction – underground! Carlsbad Cavern is one of the largest cave systems in the world but what really distinguishes it from any other cavern is the remarkable formations inside. Oh, and the fact that the cave is home to a population of bats that ranges from several thousand to several hundred thousand. It was amazing.

Leaving Carlsbad, we had a mercifully short drive through west Texas and into El Paso, where we parked the bus, dropped the Jeep, and headed south of the border. Touring the states has given us a really broad view of American standards of living; we wanted to take the opportunity to show the boys another perspective. Juarez used to be one of the most dangerous cities in the world. It’s gotten better in recent years but we still did our research before driving down for a quick driving tour and some authentic Mexican food.

Back in the US, we headed to Las Cruces and Silver City for some down time with family. We toured the White Sands Missile Range museum, went bowling, hit the movies, and generally kicked back for a few days. The boys soaked up some grandparent time. We really love this family and we really love this state!

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Family and fireworks

The farm in Ohio has been in the Boggess family for decades now and has been the scene of many holiday gatherings over the years. For the 4th of July, my parents revived that tradition with an invitation to all of my aunts, uncles, and cousins. My family calls it “the lake house” and after we all spent Christmas there it feels like a second home. I think we were all eager to share it with the rest of the family, so we parked the bus in Albuquerque and flew back for the occasion.

It was fantastic! All of my aunts, uncles, and cousins on the Boggess side were able to make it – close to 70 of us! It’s been years since we had that many Boggesses in one place. We took full advantage of our time, catching up with everyone and trying to keep up with the kids. Well, mostly the kids just had the run of the place. Imagine a small pack of Indians with a strong sense of adventure, insatiable appetites, and volume that goes to 11 coupled with a lake, rowboats, Nerf guns, bean bag toss, and a zip line into the lake and you’ll get the picture.

Did I say zip line? Yes, I did. We’d been talking about it for a couple of years but just never made it happen. On Friday morning, my brother and I were standing at the top of the hill with my cousin Rich, looking at the lake, and someone said, “Wouldn’t it be great to have a zip line into the lake?” “Yeah, but where would you anchor the cable?” Aaaand, next thing you know we’re at the hardware store and the weekend was well on the way to reaching epic status!

We capped the family festivities with an awesome fireworks display on the lake Saturday night. Afterwards, we lit sparklers and let the kids (yeah, the kids…) throw firecrackers into the campfire. It was really an excellent weekend!

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