Once we FINALLY got Shane to sleep, everyone had a good night. Yogurt, muffins I baked last week, and cheese cubes for breakfast. The kids chased each other with sticks while Mom straightened up and Daddy did some paperwork.
When we were out walking yesterday, we saw a sign for a fish hatchery just around the corner. We tried calling to see if they give tours, but the cell phone kept cutting out - not exactly Sprint central there - so we just drove over, not knowing what to expect.
We'll be back! Ranger Loralee met us there, and said of course she could give us a tour. We were joined by her daughter, Brianna, who was wheedling her way out of doing some spring break homework. We liked them both immediately - even before we found out that Brianna, along with most of the girls in her (14-member) freshman class are making cammo prom dresses. And, before we found out that, before Glenwood, they lived...twenty minutes up the hill from us. In this part of NM, that makes you next-door neighbors!
This hatchery raises only sterile female rainbow trout. We could only peek at the fingerlings through a window, because they were being treated for parasites, but we made up for it with the 2-month-olds:
|That's a lot of fish!|
|I want to go in!|
With permission, we stuck our hands in and let them nibble. Logan caught a couple, which sent him into shrieks of laughter - wish I had that on tape! Of course, we didn't actually pull them out.
Funny things about large groups of women - they start turning on each other. The white spots are where they have...er...eaten each other.
The four-month-olds are fenced off from raccoons and skunks, although some still manage to get in.
It takes about a year before the fish are ready to stock a pond or river.
There is a pond on the property with a five fish limit, no permit. We had a pole in the camper, so Daddy ran back to get it, and everyone had a turn.
The kids didn't catch anything, but they had fun. We met a couple older gentlemen who had caught their meals for the day.
Right next to the pond is a stream full of bullfrogs - no limit there! If we'd had a net, we would have come home with a new pet, but the vibrations of excited little feet made it too hard to sneak up on them.
Christopher did a good job of being still, but they were just too wary.
How many frogs can you see?
How about now?
Some cool Dr. Seuss plants, too:
Just a perfect way to spend a warm spring morning!
Shane tried to take a dip by rolling down the bank, but I caught him by the ankle just as his hair touched the surface. He pouted.
Where is Sheridan?
Ah. Of course.
After cleaning up a bit back at the camper, we hooked back up and drove a few miles up the road to Alma, where we were meeting our friends Bird and Edwin for lunch. The first people we saw when we walked in, though, were...Loralee and Brianna. Laura Lee even helped us find a table - in a back room. Hmm, I wonder what she was trying to say?
We had a great lunch, served by a very friendly waitress, Misty, and a wonderful time catching up with Bird and Edwin. Shane slept for part of the meal, then woke up to eat everyone's raw onions. Logan's silverware got married and kept kissing. Sheridan's lemonade ended up covering a good bit of the table. Maybe that back room wasn't a bad idea.
We hit the road again around 2:30. The kids asked if they could skip naps, and we said "sure." This was Logan at 2:40:
More mountains, formed a little differently than ours:
The kids all woke up around 3:30, and started getting antsy. We explained mile markers to them, and told them how many we needed to pass before the next stop (18 at that point). They all did WAY too well at counting backwards!
Cheers when we stopped in Quemado for ice cream and gas.
Didn't I say no more sugar for him? Oops.
It actually all melted off the stick, and he only got a couple bites, but he was happy. And very sticky.
Meanwhile, Daddy met someone who used to haul wood for a friend of his...
On the way out of town, we wanted to get a picture of this antler tree. You have the camera, right? No, I gave the camera to you!
Back to the gas station. Hooray for honest people!
More cool mountains...
And, time to stop again.We were now in the El Malpais. Nice little rest area with hiking trails. Shane kept grabbing sticks and running off, shrieking like a maniac.
|Sweet big brother, helping with a step up.|
Daddy once sat at the top of this arch:
When he was "much younger and much dumber" (hey, his words!)
Oh, goody, more stupid people:
Shane did NOT want to leave the sticks and dirt, but it was almost bedtime, and we still weren't at our destination.
Oh, and if you visit this particular rest stop, and you find a silver hoop earring, it's mine. Somebody had a bit of a hair-pulling tantrum when I finally picked him up and carted him out.
Our destination for the next two nights was Grants, Daddy's old stomping grounds from his law enforcement days. I got to hear LOTS of great stories about dumb criminals (and about rookie cops). We parked at the home of Randy, Mike's old training officer and friend. More on that tomorrow! By the time we rolled in, everyone was pretty much beat, so it was sandwiches and bed (after Shane chased Randy's cats all over his house and tried to steal ammo from his reloading bench.)
Animals We Saw
two of Randy's cats (Yodi and Ebony)
Rocks We Saw
arch in El Malpais
Randy's paving stones
Daddy asked the kids, "Okay, this is Exit 89, and we need to get to Exit 85. How many miles are left?" Sheridan came up with 4 before anyone else did. As we were marveling over how smart she is, she announced, "Hey, Mom? I'm going to suck on my big toe, now." Multitalented girl, that one.
Sheridan: "Can I see the picture that you didn't take?"
Started in 80's, ended around 66 degrees.
Reading 14.1 mpg
$11 for ice cream
$11.39 for drinks/snacks
$36.50 for 14.9 gallons of gas, at $2.43 a gallon