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Friday, June 22, 2012

Sunset Bridge

On this evening's walk...lovers on the bridge.
And my little babies out on their evening bird watch. Photobucket
Thursday, June 21, 2012

My little sister GRADUATED college!!!

What can I say? I am SO proud of my baby sis, Michelle for graduating in four years from UC Davis with a bachelors in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior. Yes, that's all one degree. I remember how hard it was taking all these science classes at Davis (my God, over a decade ago!) and I give her so much credit for doing so well and finishing in four years.

Not to be outdone, her boyfriend, Scott graduated with honors at the top of his class with a degree in Computer Science Engineering. I've seen and heard about them both studying so hard throughout their undergrad years and it's great to finally be able to celebrate their accomplishments with them.

Davis has changed a LOT since I left it. Downtown is full of unique shops and restaurants. There's a Trader Joe's in town now. Whole Foods is opening up soon. It's a charming, small college town with lots of character. Man, it used to be such a cowtown when I went there. The biggest thing Davis was known for back then was cowtipping! Now it's ranked #38 in US News & World Report.

Anyways, I'm glad to see my alma mater flourishing and even happier to see Michelle and Scott graduating. Here are a few images of two of my favorite people in the whole world around the UCD campus.

Excited seniors ready to graduate!!! (In the background, the beautiful Robert Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts)
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The famous UC Davis water tower in the palm of their hands. (What? You've NEVER heard of the UCD water tower?!!)
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The future's so bright...
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Stargazing with one of UCD's eggheads named Stargazer.
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She's so beautiful. (I'm not biased.)
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The hi-five outtakes...there were several, but I narrowed it down to two. One good, and one that looks like Michelle is getting smacked upside the head. Guess which one is my favorite?
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After her Friday morning graduation with our proud & happy parents.
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Congratulations Michelle!!!! We're all so proud of you!
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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fishing & Camping at Woods Canyon Lake, AZ

WOW! After almost four years of living in Arizona, I have finally found my favorite place in this state! Northeast of the Phoenix metro area are actual woods. Forest! Acres beyond acres of trees for miles on end. I couldn't believe it when I saw it. It reminded me a bit of northern California where I'm from, and I loved it. There's just something so peaceful for me about the mountains and tall trees surrounding me. It gives me a huge sense of connection to life itself. It's energizing, rejuvenating, and comforting all at the same time.

After reading an article on the White Mountains in Arizona Highways magazine, Drew and I wanted to head out and camp there. Before driving that far east though, we decided to stop by Woods Canyon Lake and camp in the Aspen Campground for a night. We loved it so much there that we decided to save the White Mountains for another trip. Below are a few images from our little camping and fishing excursion -less than two hours away from where we live, and oh so much cooler. (Square images = Instagram, Horizontal images = DSLR)

We found the perfect campsite at the Aspen Campground.
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Aspen Campground, AZ

I left my hiking shoes out by the tent and found this little blue caterpillar hanging out.
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Our first day, we hiked the Horton Creek trail. BEAUTIFUL!!! I can't believe I've been missing out on this little piece of heaven all this time I've been living here. But I'm glad the discovery has finally been made. Will definitely be back.
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The top left image of the two butterflies was right at the beginning of our hike. A sign of good things to come!
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Evening came and we got our rods ready. Woods Canyon Lake. Couldn't ask for a better place to fish.
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Woods Canyon Lake

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Before we headed home the next day, we walked along the rim trail. What a view from up there! Hello...why doesn't this area get more love? When people think of Arizona, they think cactus. But mountains & forests? Check!
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After this short trip, I am so excited to head up to the White Mountains now. If anyone has any suggestions on where to go, feel free to share them in the comments section. I'd love to know!