Tag Archives: vacation

Family Visit: Red Rocks

Wow! February is already here!!! I can’t even believe it! January went way too quickly. I can’t even believe it. Although, not gonna lie, I am super ready for sunshine and warmth. We just got another 4-6 inches of snow last night so I am beyond ready for some warmth and sunshine down here in Denver. Keep winter up in the mountains so I can continue to have my ski season, but warmth down here.

Anyway, my mom and sisters have been in town since last Monday! It has been a whirlwind week. They leave on Tuesday but I thought I would share some snapshots of the fun we have had!

Tuesday, I started them out by taking them to Red Rocks. It is absolutely stunning there and essential to see when you are here in the Denver area!

Aren’t these rocks beautiful?!

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The amphitheater at Red Rocks!

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The stairs at Red Rocks!

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This is Tara’s “I totally crushed that!” face! Lol!

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It looks like everyone was pretty tired!

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More adventures to come! Keep an eye out!

Happy February everybody!

See ya!

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Kauai, I Miss You

Kauai was an amazing, once in a lifetime trip. I am so glad that we took this time to go and get away for awhile. I am glad TJ and I finally had some time just for us. It was a really magical place and I would love to go back again some day!

Fun facts:
~ It is crazy hot and humid there.
~ Hanalei has some super great farmers markets
~ Snowcones are delicious, get it with ice cream!
~ Puka Dog makes the best lemonade ever!
~ The Kalalau is dangerous, don’t slip
~ Jurassic Park was filmed partly on Kauai
~ So was South Pacific (Bali Hai, hidden island, come to me…)
~ A lot of movies have scenes filmed in Kauai

Hanalei Bay was honestly one of my favorite parts. It was absolutely peaceful and stunning. No wonder they filmed South Pacific there. We went out on the pier at sunset and got these wonderful shots!

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Kauai was amazing and beautiful! I highly recommend going if you get the chance!

See ya!

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Kalalau

Not gonna lie, when we were talking to people on the island about Kalalau, the trail and the beach, everyone seemed super reverential and kind of mystical about it. I thought it was weird and just kind of the islanders being islanders. I know I know, super tourist here! But then you get out on the trail and you realize why they are that way.

This was my first backpacking trip ever. It was 11 miles in and then back out. We did it in 3 days. 11 miles in the first day and then we split the trip back over the next two days. (Much better decision there.) It is truly a remarkable trail and beach. I can understand why so many people are so in awe.

So, this was our view for the majority of the time. Rough right?!

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The water was so extremely blue, especially along the coast!

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We loved taking pictures! How could you not love that view?!

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We came across some trees on a hill that looked so much like the brooms from Fantasia. It was hilarious!

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As you can see, our walkway was not very big. Lol!

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By the end of the first night, we had arrived at Kalalau Beach which is only accessible by hiking or by boat. Not many people who travel to Kauai get to see this beautiful beach! Definitely worth the torturous hike that we had just finished. I slept like a baby that night!

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The funny thing about the Kalalau is that there is a group of homeless people that live there. Often times they are fully nude. I saw more naked bodies than I cared to. They live in the caves and in the valley that spreads out behind the beach, the valley I showed you earlier last week. You could live off of passion fruit forever back there. It is crazy!

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On our way back, we found this amazing waterfall! It seriously went on forever and ever! Tallest waterfall I have ever seen in person!

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Definitely way taller than me! 😛

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Now that I have conquered what Backpacker Magazine has labeled one of the top 10 deadliest hikes in the country, I feel like I can take on most other backpacking trips that come my way! Bring it on Colorado!

See ya!

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Kauai: Playing in the Water

Snorkeling! I love snorkeling so much! Seriously one of my favorite things to do ever! We saw so many cool fish! I saw a bright purple and yellow one! It ran away before I got a good picture of it though. Anyway, here is the fun we had while we were snorkeling on the northern coast of Kauai!

Just look at how clear that water is!

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Little fishies! They were everywhere!

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See, what did I tell ya?!

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Then there were some bigger fishies!

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All over the place, I’m tellin’ ya!

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I am not sure which one of this is, but it is a way cool picture!

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GoPros are good for taking selfless!

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i love this face!

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All of us! Yay for jumping!

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I love how TJ got this shot! So so cool!

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If you were to look through all of the pictures we took on this trip, you would see how much we loved snorkeling. The majority of our pictures were while we were snorkeling!

Loved it!

Have you ever been snorkeling? What was the coolest fish you saw?!

See ya!

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Kauai: Surfin’ Time

On one of the days, TJ and our friends that we went with decided to take surfing lessons. TJ had always wanted to and I was just not feeling it. It happens. I had a great day otherwise. But watching these guys try to stay upright on the surfboard was hilarious! I got pictures of all of them standing though!

Here is everybody headed out to take the lesson! They came to realize the long boards are wayyyyyy easier than the short boards!

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Here goes TJ!

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Here goes Alexi!

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Here goes Becky!

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They had so much fun! They were totally sore afterwards too! Found muscles they don’t use very often!

Have you tried surfing? How did you do?

See ya!

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Kauai Part 1 (finally)

I am finally blogging about Hawaii! Just going through the pictures made me desperate to go back! Oh man! These are not in chronological order but just some of my highlights. The pictures really do not do it justice. Enjoy!

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On one of the days we were there we did a short little day hike into one of the state parks. It was amazingly beautiful! Sprinkled a little that day but there wasn’t a day where we didn’t get sprinkled on. It created this super beautiful fog though and that made for some wonderful pictures!

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While on this hike, we got to look into the valley that we would be hiking in a week later. This is the Kalalau Valley. Honestly, really majestic. The mountains there are truly amazing!

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This was one of their tallest mountains. It topped out right about where Denver’s altitude starts lol!

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We had way too much fun hiking this little day hike!

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While we were out there, we came across this waterfall and definitely hopped in and swam and sat under the waterfall. Oh my goodness, it was freezing! I am pretty sure I was screaming as I sat under the waterfall. I don’t scream very often.

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This was not on our hike, but I was not quite sure where else to put it. This is called Queen’s Bath. It was super cool! Waves came in a little bit but it was just this little cove just a couple blocks from our condo!

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Aloha from Kauai!!!

Hey guys!!! We are having a wonderful time in Kauai!! We have another several days left here and I am already dreading going home lol. We have seen some amazing views and done some amazing things that I can wait to share when I get back. You guys are definitely going to be jealous. But until next week, I am off to keep enjoying  Kauai!

See ya!

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Less Than One Week

Oh man, I can’t believe it is less than a week until I go to Hawaii! I was definitely planning on posting more this month and time just flew by so quickly. I know I say I am going to post more every month but I really had some great blog posts that I wanted to share! That just means I will have to post some of them this week or after I get back! 

We have been super busy here in the Ridges and Ripples household. TJ and I have both been working non-stop it feels like. We are continuing to work non-stop until we leave for Hawaii. Needless to say, our dogs are not happy about that. It is so hard when you are working constantly and it is blazing hot outside to get your huskies out for a walk or a run or a hike. They get overheated so easily. Hopefully, after Hawaii things will settle down a little bit and I can get them out a little more easily. 

I am so looking forward to this getaway! It means almost two weeks of not having to hear from or think about work. It means almost two weeks of time with TJ, whereas right now I’m lucky if I get a couple hours in the evening before bed. I have to say, having a zip-line guide for a husband can really put a strain in a relationship. The schedule is insane and the amount of exertion he puts his body through everyday means he is exhausted when he comes home. It can be tough. This summer has definitely made our marriage insanely strong. It has tested both of us in ways we never would’ve imagined. It has made me a stronger wife. It has also made me realize that if he does this again next year, I need a different job that allows me to be home more and have a more flexible schedule so that I can spend more time with him. 

Hawaii is going to be great! I am going to relax and refresh. I am definitely going to come back with lots of pictures and stories to share! I may just stay and live there. Who knows? Lol!

Now off to finish out the week before I can play!

See ya!

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Weekend Update: Graduated!!!!!!

So, over the past week I had been so busy with the last bit of my Homework and getting the house clean and making sure everything was ready to go down to Virginia to graduate this weekend. Then on Thursday we left to go down, made a couple stops on the way. We stopped by my family’s house to drop off our lizard because we have come to realize we are not lizard people and really did not want to cart that lizard across the country when we move in about a month and a half. Then we stopped in Harrisonburg to see TJ’s best man Ben. It was so great to see him. We love hanging out with Ben. Then we made our way to Lynchburg where our first outing was dinner with my best friend Jess and her man. It was a great dinner! One of our favorite restaurants. Afterwards, we drove through campus and saw how different it looked even from just a year ago! And hung out downtown, our old stomping grounds. Overall, it was a great night! We ended up spending the night with some friends. They were great to see as well!

Friday began all of the commencement activities. We had Chic-Fil-A for breakfast which we have decided is going to be our graduation tradition. Went to the Youth Min office to get my certificate and our coupons for free Fro-Yo! After that, we went and got our free Fro-Yo and hung out with our Youth profs! They are seriously the best Profs at LU. I couldn’t have asked for better major for my college career at LU. It was then time to meet up with my family and check-in to get our reader cards for the actual graduation ceremony the next day. After checking in, we then drove to the hotel with my family to check-in there and for me to get a shower. We then went to my favorite restaurant in Downtown Lynchburg called Waterstone. It has the best food ever! It is a family favorite whenever we come to Lynchburg. After a deliciously filling meal and dessert, we headed back to campus for Baccalaureate. Luis Palau was the speaker and He did a wonderful job challenging and encouraging the students as they go out into their respective fields.

Saturday morning we had to be at the stadium bright and early, at 6:30 (although we didn’t get there until about 7:15, no biggie) in order to go through metal detectors thanks to Mitt Romney being our commencement speaker. We then stood around for forever and then made our way into the stadium. Not going to lie, walking in the Grand Processional with the wind ensemble playing and everything is kind of awesome. The whole stadium is packed with people and you come to realize that the four years you just spent working your butt off for this degree is done and you did it! It was awesome! Mitt Romney gave a really good commencement address. I may not agree with him on everything but his challenge and encouragement to the students was great! They also gave an honorary doctorate to the founder of Chic-Fil-A. That was awesome! I am an addict so I was super excited! A student that started his degree in the 1980’s but then got in a horrible car accident that made it to where he could only take so many credits each semester, finally graduated on Saturday! I had gotten to know him and he had become kind of icon around campus. So, it was super exciting to see his almost 20 years of hard work finally pay off! After the big commencement ceremony, we then went into the Thomas Road Baptist Church auditorium where the religion majors where going to get their degrees. I ended up being the first Youth Major to walk across the stage on Saturday. That was awesome! The best part of the day however, was my Dad and I got to walk across the stage at the exact same time and shook Elmer Towns hand at the exact same time! We graduated together and to me that was a huge deal! I had kept the waterworks in but when I hugged my Youth Profs and thanked them, I started crying a little bit lol. It was such a wonderful day.

We then made our way to my parents house. Just relaxed that night since we had had a long day. Sunday, we got up and went to church. Mom had Mother’s Day off so we were able to just spend the day with her and my Grandma from California, and my Grandparents who live not far from my family. It was again just another relaxing day. It was nice to just get away from life for a bit and realize that my Undergrad career is completely done. Now on to get my Masters! Whoo!

Back to the grind today but here are some pictures from my weekend:

Me with Professor Gooz!

Me with Doc Brown!

Me and Dr. V!

Love all these guys! It has been the best four years despite the long nights trying to make sure all those projects were good. Lol.

I know the picture is a little blurry but this had to have been my favorite moment of the day when my Dad and I graduated and shook Elmer Towns hand together. 🙂

There we go!

See ya!

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Wandlust Wednesday: Peru

I absolutely love Peru! If there was one South American country I could live in, it would definitely be Peru. So, I could not pick just one place in Peru where I would like to live. I have not been to too many places in Peru. I have been to Lima, Cuzco, and Machu Picchu. We went two years in a row. I wish I could’ve gone more. My goal is to definitely visit there again. TJ has never been and I would love to show him the culture. 

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This was one of my favorite meals in Peru. It consisted of french fries, the corn on the cob, Inca Kola, and Cow heart. Yes, legitimately cow heart. It was absolutely delicious! 

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This is Machu Picchu. Absolutely stunning! The view, the history, the air, the llamas. It is all just amazing! I thought I had more pictures from site seeing in Peru but this is all I could find. Enjoy! 

If you want to see more pictures you should check out this blog. This is a lovely lady who has her own company in Belgium where she sells knits. She is opening a brand of knits using alpaca yarn. She is providing an opportunity for girls who got pregnant way too young an environment with good working conditions as well as decent pay to provide for themselves. She is awesome! Go check out her blog as well as her pictures from her Peru visits!

See ya! 

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