At Bryce Canyon National Park, erosion has shaped colorful Claron limestones, sandstones, and mudstones into thousands of spires, fins, pinnacles, and mazes. Collectively called "hoodoos," colorful and whimsical formations stand in horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters along the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau in Southern Utah.

During our three day, four night visit to Bryce Canyon July 5-9, Robert and I stood in awe and gazed in wonderment as we totally took in this extreme Utah beauty in every direction as we hiked on foot and rode on horseback.

We pitched a tent in space #81 at the North Campground, enjoyed "camp" meals which included canned Dinty Moore stew, canned potatoes, and sausages for dinner. To cut down on washing dishes, breakfast was always just hot cocoa, canned juice, and cold cereal in a paper bowl.

Our horseback ride midweek was a seven mile hike lasting three and a half hours which included a water stop at the bottom of the valley. It was also a nice break for our butts! My horse was "Garth." Robert's was "Tool Time." Of course Robert had to talk the Tim talk as we clopped up and down the trails. The horses were well behaved except they really liked to walk on the very outside edge of steep paths. Our guide told us the horses were trained to do that to give us the best view and assured us they don't want to fall anymore than we did and that they really do know what they are doing. I had to keep repeating this rationale to myself every time Garth swayed too far over the edge. Afterwards, I told Robert I wanted to buy a Tee shirt that said "I survived horseback riding in Bryce Canyon."

Our Bryce Canyon adventure was sandwiched between travels to Las Vegas and Salt Lake City. The July 4th holiday weekend found us in Las Vegas meeting up with Kathy and Tim on July 3rd, Kathy's birthday. We celebrated her 29th, went to see Cirque du Soleil's production of "O" followed with dinner at Noodles. Sunday Kathy and Tim left early to drive back home to co-host a block party in their neighborhood. Robert and I then enjoyed exploring more casinos taking in the Star Trek adventure at the Hilton, and later in the evening, we totally, totally enjoyed seeing The Blue Man Group!

After Bryce, we drove to Salt Lake City to attend a three day Austin Families Convention and met up with my Mom who had just driven from Naturita after a three day visit with her sisters and family.

To top all of this off, on the way back to California from Salt Lake City, we added one more day to our July vacation adventure by visiting Lehman Caves in the Great Basin National Park.

Of course we took dozens and dozens of photographs in Las Vegas, Bryce, Salt Lake City, Lehman and even stopped at Austin, a semi ghost town in Nevada, to take a bunch more. Go to our photo link to experience our vacation a la imagery.













Closing in on six months old, Paris (named after a town in Wisconsin NOT Paris Hilton) is our new German Short Haired Pointer puppy who became a part of our household March 26th. Madison, now eight years old, keeps wondering what the heck happened to her nice quiet life. Actually both Paris and Madison get along quite well. In fact a once somewhat overweight Madison is getting much more "playtime" exercise now and has lost close to eight pounds!

Visit our puppy page, a sequential Weblog launched February 8, 2004, to read more about Paris. Yes, there are also links to lots and lots of cute puppy pictures!













Chris and Patricia appear to have added acquiring pinball machines to their large acquisition of arcade machines. Read what Chris had to say about this newest phase:

June 5: Got our first pinball

Patricia and I went to San Jose last night and purchased a pinball together. The game is Spy Hunter, it's a 1984 Bally game. It's not working, but the cabinet is in great shape. Got it for $100! It's still folded up in the garage. My arms were tired last night from getting it down a flight of stairs. It's sooooo freakin heavy. Much heavier than an old electromechanical. Now my arms are sore, and I'm not sure how I'm gonna heave it over the step(s). Patricia is planning to build a ramp.

June 5: It's in the house!

Patricia's idea of building a ramp worked great. Even though my arms are sore from last night (and I could barely carry in the groceries) it was pretty easy to bring in. Had to bring it in the front door because it's an inch wider than will fit through the door in the garage.
Still don't have it working yet, all the hardware stores are closed.

June 10: Now it's upstairs!

I looked up on the internet to see if anyone was crazy enough to try to take a pinball upstairs by themselves. I found a whole thread about it and a few 98lb weaklings said they've done it. They do it by taking the pinball apart and taking it up one small piece at a time!
While Patricia was at work I took the pinball completely apart and dragged it upstairs. Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of it all in pieces. The empty cabinet was a little heavy, but not too bad on the appliance truck (yes I bought one, moving games without one was getting ridiculous). I would just do a step or two and then pause for a few seconds and do the next.
It's too bad the arcade cabinets can't be dismantled into small pieces!

June 18: Pinball!

Got the pinball fully working! Parts finally arrived today, got them all soldered in and that was all it took! There's still some worn spots on the playfield to fix, and it needs a good cleaning and waxing.
Don't know if we'll eBay it or put an ad up someplace. But until then it's fun to play!

July 6: And then there were two

Got our second pinball! (Or is it our third? See
Another moving sale and I was first to respond. Patricia was a little hesitant about buying it, but now she can't stop playing. This is one of those fancy ones with big ramps and multiball. It cost twice as much as the first one. When you spend that kind of money you can play it as soon as you get home! We got the money from the sale of that crane machine. (Bought the crane for $10 and sold it for $350!) This pinball needs a little bit of tweaking and the usual extra parts like the rubbers and lights.














Kathy and Tim continue to grow their new house into their very own home, sweet home. Having moved in just a little more than a year ago, both Kathy and Tim have painted most all of the interior walls. Kathy has sewn up yards and yards of fancy fabrics into curtains and drapes. Lots of special touches in the way of knickknacks, new furniture and pictures continue to pop up to further create a warm, cozy and comfortable home environment.

Their latest endeavor is their yard, having finished hardscape last spring. Now they are into the softscape or "the buying of the plants" phase. In March, Robert and I took the opportunity, before acquiring our new puppy, to drive down to visit, see the hardscape and enjoy their latest home improvements.

Kathy updates their web page from time to time with pictures and descriptions. You can read more about their house and what's going on in their lives by visiting: