October 29, 2016
Paul Groves

Midweek Visit to Disneyland

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Ron and I made a visit to Disneyland on a Wednesday… because we could. We were celebrating a little because we just had new passport photos taken at AAA and sent off the applications for our tourist visas for China and India. Whew. Disneyland was decorated for Halloween. As the day wore on, we saw more and more people in costume, some of them were very clever. The special Halloween night began at 6:00 p.m. We were on our way home by then.

October 20, 2016
Paul Groves

Holland America Grand Voyage 2017

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People ask about the ports we will visit on our Around-the-World Cruise in 2017. Here is a nice image that shows it all. The adventure begins January 4, 2017.

October 20, 2016
Paul Groves

Hand-cut Pappardelle with Butternut Squash Pesto

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Besides fettuccine, we made a hand cut pasta called pappardelle. This was tossed with a roasted butternut squash and pesto mixture with hazelnuts instead of pine nuts and parsely & sage instead of basil. Yum!

October 20, 2016
Paul Groves

Pasta Sauce

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The sauces we made to go with the pasta were simple and tasty. Ron is stirring a lemon cream sauce with salmon. This was mixed with the fettuccine we made.

October 20, 2016
Paul Groves

Pasta from Scratch

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Ron and I took another cooking class together at Sur Le Table. I’ve always wanted to try making pasta from scratch. It was a pretty easy process. We are going to practice at home and invite some friends to try the result.

October 10, 2016
Paul Groves

Found a Good Picture

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It has been a month since we visited Ketchikan, but I just noticed this picture. There is always a “photo op” when you leave the ship at a port. I pity the poor guy or girl in that eagle suit. How many times has it been worn? How many times has it been cleaned?? I was the school mascot (Clyde Cougar) and that furry outfit was RIPE! I like this picture. I’m wearing my favorite sweatshirt and neither of us have a dumb expression on our faces. Ketchikan was the port city where we went on our Rainforest Hike on Betton Island.

September 22, 2016
Paul Groves

Hanging Gardens

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We took the Park shuttle to the stop for the Riverwalk. The shuttle bus had special windows in the ceiling do you could see the high cliffs as you traveled the canyon. One cool feature of the Riverwalk were the areas where water seeped through the porous sandstone. With this source of water, plants are able to grow from cracks and ledges in the cliff faces. These formed hanging gardens with various flowers and leaves. One plant caught our attention because of the delicate purple hues blended with the green.
I earned my Zion Junior Ranger badge by completing 14 tasks including attending a Ranger talk (one of the highlights) and other awareness activities. The challenge made my visit more interesting. I have always found I work better when there is a goal to achieve.

September 22, 2016
Paul Groves

Flash Floods Expected

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Along with the rains comes the danger of flash floods. The Virgin River that runs through the canyon usually has a current of 40 cubic feet/second at this time of the season. The night we arrived, the flow was measured at 2,000 cu ft/sec. We were hoping to hike The Narrows, where the canyon walls get very deep and close together, but the Rangers (and common sense) closed the Narrows on the day we were hiking in the Park. We did the Riverwalk which is the mile of paved trail that leads up to the Narrows. It was a great walk and we even saw a tarantula. Apparently this is the time they come out looking for a mate.

September 22, 2016
Paul Groves

Zion National Park

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We drove into the Park after a day of rainy weather. My expectations of good weather were very low, but I found out that visiting Zion in the rain added something to the experience rather than taking away. We walked to the Lower Emerald Pool because it was a short, easy trail near the Zion Lodge. The waterfall at the end was much larger and more impressive because of the rains. The sun was starting to shine through the clouds giving dramatic lighting to the already spectacular canyon walls. We boarded a guided tram ride That gave us an overview of the Park.

September 21, 2016
Paul Groves

Lower Altitude Stops

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Just a little lower in elevation than Bryce Canyon was Fairyland Canyon. The hoodoos were more visible in the fog. Hoodoos are formed by erosion caused when water soaks into the sandstone, freezes, and expands (hydrogen bonding in action.)
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Back in Red Canyon, below the clouds, we had a good photo op with Smokey Bear and then a short hike up Hoodoo Trail. The two little formations on top of the canyon are named “salt & pepper.”