Week in the Mountains – Fri, Sat, Sun

Continuing my blogging about my time up in the mountains…

Friday:

Jeremy drove up as soon as he was off work Friday morning, and met us up at the cabin around 9 am.

Baby Sandwich!

When the baby fell asleep, so we left her at the cabin with my parents while we went on a hike/letterboxing hunt. We didn’t find what we were looking for (though we did find some rocks known as “Banana Boat Rock” and “Butt Crack Rock”).

After lunch we actually passed out and took a nice long nap together as a family. 🙂

Jeremy and I had a nice little date night dinner at Neo’s Pizza in the “big town” down the hill.

Note: I do continue to cloth diaper in the mountains. Friday was the only day I had to wash them, and they lasted the entire rest of the time we were there. I also got to try air drying them on a clothes line! I was actually very excited about that, as I have heard that they last longer and hold up better when dried on a line (as do all clothes, by the way!). I am happy that our new apartment we will be moving to next month has a balcony/patio that I can hang a line to air dry them more in the future, because I liked it. 🙂

Saturday:

We started the day with a walk around the lake with my mom and Blueberry. While we were there, we snagged a quick and easy geocache behind the boathouse – GVL Frog Hotel.

Geocaching - GVL Frog Hotel

And of course I couldn’t help taking a photo of the peddle boat Blueberry’s Pops named after her!

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After our walk, we headed down to “the big town” (Running Springs) for their Farmer’s Market. My mom tie-dyed a shirt, and we picked up some fruits and veggies. When we got back up to GVL, we grabbed some food and a map of the town with the locations of the local Artisans Workshop thing they had going on. (All the local craftspeople either open up their homes, or put a table out front with their wares) We picked a few off the list that sounded interested, and started driving around. Memorial Day weekend is also a big weekend for people to set out yard sale stuff, so we stopped by one of those as well. I picked up a super cute blue vintage suitcase that I plan to put all of Blueberry’s blankets in.

Back at the house, we started prepping for company: 4 of my parents friends from back home (they were camping over in Arrowhead), and 1 friend from around town. 9 people (plus a baby) in a tiny cabin is quite a few too many, so we took the dinner party out back and set up a folding table and pulled up some chairs. Ribs, corn, salad, and asparagus. Yum!

After dinner we took turns zipping up and down the street on the electric bikes (from Pedego), and Larry’s Honda 70. Those electric bikes are actually WAY fun! My dad took me on a little excursion on them after dinner – up through the campgrounds, and then up and through one of the fire roads and back down around to the cabin.

Sunday:

My mom had been talking about hiking “Bear Scratch Trail” all week, and we finally got around to doing it on Sunday morning. Jeremy strapped Blueberry on, and I grabbed the backpack and off we all headed – on a much longer hike than I had anticipated!

My parents call it “Bear Scratch Trail” because the first time they hiked it, they saw bear prints, and some bear scratches in the ground near the start of it. Kinda scary, but we didn’t see any signs of anything other than deer on this trip.

The trail goes up and along the ridge above the fire road my dad and I had taken on the bikes the night before, and then drops back down into the campgrounds where Jeremy and I had gone hiking on our own (where Banana Boat Rock and Butt Crack Rock are). I had brought coordinates to several geocaches that were supposedly pretty close by where we were hiking, but they all turned out to be too far out of the way from where we were hiking to make any real sense to go after (the first one I climbed all the way up the mountain through thorn bushes, only to find nothing… so yea…).

Once we got back to the main road that went through the campground, my parents convinced us to take the “scenic route” up another path that “just follows the road, but up above…” I call shenanigans! That way was way longer, and we accidentally ended up walking through a couple peoples’ campsites at the end of it before we got back to the main road.

We passed back by “The Big Tan Can” geocache, and I ran up to it real quick to add another log (the last time we’d been up there, I signed on the last line, and felt bad leaving no room for the next cacher to sign).

Like I said, that entire hike was WAY longer than I thought it would be, and I didn’t put on sunscreen first. I ended up with a pretty bad burn on my shoulders (and the part of my scalp where my hair was parted!).

Later, Jeremy asked me if I would take him on the same bike ride my dad and I had gone on the night before. So we left a sleeping Blueberry with my parents again, and headed out with our geocaching gear.

Turns out geocache #3 wasn’t as far off the trail as we’d originally thought… And would have been much easier to reach from the hiking trail rather than the fire road where we were buzzing around on the bikes…

Jeremy found Ride to Craft’s Peak after a hike up a very steep incline, and shimmying under a scrubby little bush/tree and hanging over the side of a rock… Now, I’m not complaining. I think the adventure and whatnot is what really makes it fun, haha. Then again, I didn’t have to shimmy under a bush…

But we did find our very first trackable in there!

Geocaching - Ride to Craft's Peak!

The trackable is in memory of their little pup who passed away. We plan to attach it to something special before we send it on to its next cache (down at one of the caches by our local Dog Beach).

Later that night, I wasn’t feeling so good. Between the sunburn, some dehydration from the long hike, sleeping on a not-so-great mattress for the last week, and just general fatigue, I was kind of just ready to go home. We were supposed to leave around 4pm Monday, but Jeremy could tell I was done, and just needed to come home, so we left GVL around 8.30 on Sunday night. As much as I love the mountains, I will admit that I was very happy to sleep in my own bed last night, and am looking forward to the same tonight. 🙂

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Week in the Mountains – Tue, Wed, Thurs

My parents decided to take a vacation and spend a whole week and a half up at the cabin in the mountains. Jeremy and I had planned on coming up Friday morning to join them for the long weekend. Plans changed when my mom invited me to come up early on Tuesday. So I got to spend a whole week up here in the beautiful mountains and Jeremy met us up here on Friday morning, because he couldn’t get any more time off of work.

View from the Top

Tuesday:

My mom came back down the mountain for the day to do some work for a client and to run some errands. She picked me and Blueberry up while she was down there. We didn’t get up to the cabin until pretty late in the afternoon, so we didn’t really do much aside from eat dinner, haha.

Wednesday:

Wednesday was the first day Blueberry has gone without seeing her Daddy at all. (Come to think of it, it’s the first full day I’ve gone without seeing Jeremy since we first started dating!) I packed it full of as much adventure and fun as I could, so I wouldn’t think about it too much…

After breakfast, my dad needed to head over to the local dump to drop off a truckload of branches and plywood and whatnot he had collected from the backyard and the shed. I offered to go with him, and asked if we could stop by a geocache that happened to be right across the road from the dump. He said sure and off we went.

Helping him unload the truckbed, I unknowingly ripped a hole in the knee of my jeans. I didn’t notice until I went to get back in the car and slammed my knee against the dashboard… Yea, I’m clumsy. I didn’t get hurt unloading the truck, but WATCH OUT FOR THAT DASHBOARD!

After we finished at the dump, he pulled across the street to the turnout where Sssssslithering Again is located. 100 feet through some pretty wild bushes and I was at Ground Zero. I started looking around, and even knowing what I was looking for, he still FREAKED ME OUT! I could clearly see the geocache sticking out the back end of him, and that his face was rather chewed up-looking… Even still, I threw a rock at him to make sure he was fake before attempting to pick him up!

Sssssslithering Again

Took him back to the truck to swap goodies (and try to retrieve a sucker someone had stuck in there and gotten all melted, but the leatherman was too wide) and sign the log book before returning him to his natural habitat and snapping a quick picture with Skittles the Adventure Owl.

Even in the car on the return trip, adventure was to be found! We heard a helicopter circling overhead and saw that it was one of the fire-fighting ones, with a long rope hanging down from it. We pulled over to the side and I was able to snap a few photos of it as it dropped its load (a telephone pole!) down to the team waiting to install it!

Helicopter

Helicopter

After we got back, we (my mom, dad, and I – with Blueberry strapped on) took a short hike up the normal trails. I didn’t bring my bag of geocaching/baby stuff because I had JUST fed and changed the baby, and we weren’t planning on being gone longer than a half hour. However, we ended up hiking to Phoenix Rising and poking around a bit in hopes of finding the geocache we had missed last time we’d been up that way. Since the last trip, I had looked over some of the comments made on the bottom, and seen a picture of what appeared to be the cache (or, you know, a rock). With a better idea of what we were looking for this time, it was only a few moments before my dad shouted out that he’d found it!

Phoenix Rising

…But I’d left all my geocaching supplies in my backpack in the cabin. I sadly placed the unopened cache back where my dad had found it, and we trekked back to the cabin. I planned to come back once Jeremy joined us.

However, fate had other plans. A couple of my parents’ friends (who were camping in the area) came by the cabin for dinner, and everyone decided to head out on another hike. We started up, letting our friends decide where and how far they wanted to go. We ended up passing right by Phoenix Rising again. This time I had thought ahead and brought my bag! This was our first ever redemption, and I must say it makes me very happy!

Going Hiking

After a nice dinner with the company, dad’s friend pulled out his little Honda motorcycle and my dad and he were taking turns riding up and down the street on its little souped up engine. I asked my dad if I could take a ride, and he let me hop on back as we did a loop down to the end of the street and back. Not super exciting by most people’s standards, I guess, but it was my first time on a motorcycle, and I can see the appeal, haha.

Thursday:

My parents left around 9 in the morning to head back down the mountain for the day (mom needed to do some more work for a client on-site, and then they had tickets to a play in the evening). This left me and Blueberry up at the cabin all day with Porthos and Chloe (my parents’ pups). It was a mellow day. I did some work remotely, the weather was decidedly bi-polar, and Blueberry slept on and off throughout the day.

The weather: we had been told that Thursday would be rain and thunderstorms, then just rain, then possible snow… but it dawned sunny and beautiful. After my parents left down the mountain and I started working, it started sprinkling on and off a little bit. Then after a nice long sunny spell, with no warning, it just starts HAILING! I was so stunned I just stood at the window and stared instead of taking a picture like I should have. Five minutes later it turned into dumping rain, and another five minutes after that it lightened up and then stopped. It rained/sprinkled a couple more times on and off, and by about 4 in the afternoon, it was back to being sunny and beautiful.

Mother’s Day in the Mountains!

Our last day in the mountains was Mother’s Day! It was my very first Mother’s Day, and it was just lovely!

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The morning started mellow, with a tea and cupcake breakfast with my mom and Blueberry.

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We took a fun off-roading trip to go see the “Pregnant Tree.” (And get some awesome ideas for geocache hiding spots)

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Pops got some cuddle time with Blueberry while Jeremy and I went on a quick and easy geocache up the street.

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And then we cleaned up the cabin and headed back home to dinner at my Uncle’s house. Overall, busy but mellow day.

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Geocaching in the Mountains!

WE LOVE GEOCACHING IN THE MOUNTAINS! Oh my goodness, geocaching in the mountains has been SO much more fun than urban geocaching. We don’t have to worry at all about muggles, the views are spectacular, the geodogs can be off leash exploring, we’re surrounded by nature, and -sigh- just plain perfect! A little sad Clover couldn’t come up here with us (she’s too young and spazzy, plus she is small and moves like a prey animal), but that’s ok.

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Jeremy wore Blueberry on our hike today, and Pops loaned her his beanie.

We went looking for 3 geocaches, and started with the hardest/furthest up the trail one. Me-Ma and Pops and their geodogs went with us for the first two.

Geocache One: Phoenix Rising

This one had a gorgeous view overlooking Lake Arrowhead and Victorville and the desert out that direction. Unfortunately we didn’t find this one, but now that we know what the containers look like (the same guy hid all three of the ones we were searching for today). But we got some great shots along the way!

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Geocache Two: Don’t Look UP

This one was a nice, awesome, easy cache! Beautiful views, and I’m glad they pointed out “Toboggan Hill.” I’m sure Blueberry will love coming here in the winter when she’s a little bigger! We swapped one of my signature ATC’s and a green army man for a Team Bremis signature geocoin and a pack of Harry Potter trading cards.

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Forgot to snag a picture of the ATC and the cache itself.

After this one, we noticed the geodogs were getting pretty tired and ready to head back, so Me-Ma and Pops took them back to the cabin, while Jeremy, Blueberry, and I went off in search of the third one by ourselves.

Geocache Three: Can You Find a Quercus Lobata?

Another nice and easy one, not far off of a side street. Mellow little trail. Perfect for kids and geodogs! Careful of the thorny bushes.

Jeremy, Blueberry, and Skittles posing with the find:

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And we swapped out one of my signature ATC’s for that awesome pair of pink kid sunglasses that Blueberry is rockin’ in that photo. Here’s another picture:

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All in all, we totally love geocaching in the mountains, and we are definitely going to be hiding some of our own up here in the not-too-far-off future! I don’t think there can be too many geocaches in an area like this, considering how many really cool little trails and things run all through this area. Hope you enjoyed a little view of our adventures this weekend!

(Also, HAPPY BIRTHDAY JEREMY!!)

First Day at the Cabin

The first day at the cabin has been beautiful and perfect! My mom and I decided to take Charlotte up a day earlier than the boys (Jeremy has work until 6.30am on Saturday, and my dad thought he was going to have to work Saturday in the morning). So we got all of our local work done early and headed up around 9.30 this morning.

We packed up her dogs and the car with all the stuff we needed, and headed up the mountain! When we got up here we unpacked the car, took a short stroll/walk/hike with the pups, and then came back to the cabin to finish the work we could do remotely. Finished that up pretty quickly, so we could go on a nice longer walk up the mountain.

We were on the lookout for all kinds of plants, but mainly trying to keep an eye out for the kinds we could forage. Miner’s lettuce grows in abundance in the shady areas, and there are supposedly some kinds of gooseberries and currants up here that make good jam and ice cream and stuff.

The other thing we were on the lookout for are some good hiding spots for geocaches. We probably won’t be hiding anything up here this time, but we are doing some recon so that we can put together some awesome hides for people. Being up here makes my creative juices flow! I’ve only been up here a few hours, and I already love it!

Here are some photos from our second hike – plants we saw, and some wonderful views!

Sierra Currant

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Traveling with Babies

This week is a whole slew of special occasions. Thursday is Jeremy’s friend’s birthday. Friday is my Mom’s birthday. Saturday is Jeremy’s birthday. Sunday is Mother’s Day…

KODAK Digital Still Camera

So naturally we are getting the heck out of dodge this weekend to avoid all that crap! Haha just kidding. Well, we /are/ going out of town, but not to avoid it. We will be going up to my parents’ cabin in the mountains with them this weekend (where we will, indeed celebrate both my mom’s and Jeremy’s birthdays). My mom and I are leaving to go up on Friday mid-day, and my dad and Jeremy will meet us up there on Saturday, since both of them work until Saturday morning.

Just a short trip, nothing major. But we are looking forward to doing some geocaching in nature (urban geocaching definitely has some limitations… like LOTS OF MUGGLES EVERYWHERE!!), and mom says there is even a place that does karaoke on Saturdays. 🙂

As I talked to my mom about heading up there this weekend, my brain went into overdrive just thinking about all of the extra crap I’m going to have to bring now that I have a baby! On top of all of my own clothes and toiletries, I will also have to bring Blueberry’s bouncer, enough cloth diapers to last her the weekend, warm clothes and blankets in case it gets cold, shorter sleeved clothes because it’s hot during the day, her carrier, diaper wipes… I could go on, but I think you get the gist. (Not to mention I need to bring cake mix to bake a cake up there for the birthdays)

I guess I’m just coming to the realization that the baby is going to need a duffel bag all to herself, whereas Jeremy and I are planning to share one between the two of us.

All of that aside, I am definitely looking forward to heading up there this weekend, and getting some time out in nature. Hiking, biking, swimming in the lake, snuggling up by the fire… 🙂

This will be our first real trip going anywhere with the baby, and I’m sure I’ll probably forget SOMETHING that’ll make me kick myself… Does anyone have any tips for traveling with a baby? Or anything that I absolutely NEED to pack?

Spin-y Park and Night Cache-ing

So we decided that when we take the dog for walks, we’re going to try to go Geocaching or Atlas Questing at the same time. Clover is happy to be out and about. Blueberry is happy in her carrier. We are happy for the added excitement of looking for treasure!

Geocache One: Vista Bolsa Chica

Yesterday we went down to Spin-y Park (or, as the city calls it – Weider Park) to hunt for a couple of caches hidden there. The first one we went for there were a couple of teenage “muggles” hanging out near where it was hidden, so we decided to go after the second one, and then come back after.

Geocache Two: Squeezing One More in at Wieder

At the top of the bluff, heading towards the 2nd cache (can you see Skittles?):

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This was Blueberry’s second time facing outward in her carrier, and she loves it!

The view overlooking the Wetlands from the top of the bluff:

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The field of daisies at the top of the bluff:

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When we got down to the area near where the 2nd one was hidden, there were some other muggles hanging out and chilling, so we decided to come back another day.

We went back up to the top of the bluff and around to the park again. The teenage muggles were gone, so we were able to hunt for the original cache we were going for. 🙂

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FOUND IT! I swear he was more excited than he looks in the photo, haha.

Because it was such a small container, there wasn’t much room in it to swap treasures. But someone had left a nice small rock in the bottom. So we swapped it out for some tiny origami stars, and a teacup sticker:

Vista Bolsa Chica

Then in the afternoon, my friend Ash sent me a text, asking about geocaching. I told her if she was interested in trying it out, she was more than welcome to come with us some time. We hadn’t been planning another adventure yesterday, but she sounded so excited that we decided to go search for a couple of easy ones in the Bella Terra area in the evening after the sun went down.

Geocache Three: Cache in a Field of Dreams

The first one we went after was on the campus of Goldenwest College. Nice, easy cache. Didn’t catch any photos of the search, but we swapped a container of bubbles for a little kid tambourine. Ash traded a lion coin thing for a lion stuffed animal.

Geocache Four: Ye Olde Geocache II

The next one we tried for was in Old World Village. The last note was that it was confirmed to be there, but we couldn’t find it. Perhaps because we were searching in the dark (and forgot to bring flashlights >.<, so we were using phones…). We’ll try again some time during the day.

Geocache Five: Dick’s Pick

The final cache we looked for yesterday was another successful one in the Michael’s parking lot near Dick’s Sporting goods. We swapped a Minnie Mouse/Daisy sticker for a little cupcake coin thing. Ash traded another coin thing (dunno if it was the zebra or the elephant) for a Hello Kitty coin thing. You can see the cupcake coin thing in the photo. It’s kinda small, but it’s there.

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