We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...

We Climbed before the Klimb 4 Kim...
1997's Climb

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Just Keep Swimming

        Sometimes, I forget to breathe...usually at the damndest times, or over the seemingly inconsequential events.  Yet, it happens...

                   They come in flashes, remembrances, or occasions that I know Kim would have so appreciated....Here's one - Tonio, simply enjoying an afternoon shower (yes, you need to turn your computer sideways)...he is so ecstatic, it is so rare that the bambini get to actually play in the rain.  It typically comes with apocalyptic lightning...or winds that make me want to tie large rocks around the kid's waists, so they do not blow away.  This afternoon shower was just right - Tonio giggled with joy and shrieked "It's so cold!!".  A nice moment...

                 On the way to the Desert Museum last night, Autumn captured the darkening desert...They are open late on Saturday nights during the summer - until 10:00 PM.  Kim loved to go out there several times during the summer.
              Here is where Kim and I had our picnic lunch on our wedding day...we had Baggins deliver the sandwiches to San Xavier Mission, and led our party of 15 out into the desert en route to Old Tucson Movie Studios.  This rest stop is just before you pass through Gates Pass, as far west on Speedway as you can go.

                           Autumn was able to capture these shots as we hurtled through the desert, on winding roads, doing my best Hunter Thompson impersonation (See or read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas -by Hunter Thompson, starring Bill Murray in the original movie and Johnny Depp in the remake).

                The Desert Museum was pretty crowded.  The temp had dropped down into the 80's following the rain.  So, I passed into the Staff parking lot, past the "Do Not Enter" sign and got an optimal parking spot.  We were greeted by this little guy just next to our vehicle.  Our friend, Yolanda, was working the ticket window - we've known her since 1994 when she worked down the road at Old Tucson.  She's been at the Desert Museum for 11 years now.  She always gives the kids little treats - tonight...flashlights!  And she told me to be sure to tell my 'sister' Janene hi and let me know she gave Janene and her family passes to get in when they went out last week.  She always takes good care of us...
                      This was not on our front porch.  We viewed this rattler and many others in the reptile house, protected by safety glass.
                     Autumn snapped these beautiful, night blooming flowers near the prairie dogs.  The mountain lion was very active tonight, the kids loved that!  They have a lot of fun activities for the kids on Saturday nights, including scorpion hunting with black lights, a live animal show (tonight, was owls flying over the audience's heads in their auditorium) and it was astronomy night.  The kids got to make constellation charts, planet charts, necklaces and bracelets with white beads that change to various colors of the rainbow when exposed to UV rays.
The kids got to see how high their vertical leap was and then the lady would multiply the inches times 9, letting you know how high you would jump if you were on the moon!  She said Cody had the highest vertical leap out of any children she had tested that night, 19".
                                                   Autumn and Antonio both leaped 6"...
And below, the kids are making meteors!  The demo guy, from Kitt Peak Observatory, was there last year.  I remember Kim saying he reminded her of the Heat Miser's brother, Snow Miser.  We laughed so hard, we had to leave the room...and suddenly, I could not breathe and I was sitting down, not knowing whether there was a chair behind me or not...the room, the people, all slowing down...and I hit, the chair, thank God, hard.  Sitting, watching...deja vu.
When time started ticking again, my breath returned, in time to see Tonio add ammonia to this mixture (he's in the orange, striped shirt, slightly hidden).  Cody remembered this guy's every joke and tendency - so this night, it was he and I who were amused.  He raffles off a Galileo telescope, at 9:00, or so he says.  As we put in our entries, Cody said "Watch Dad, he says 9, but then he'll make another meteor at 9 and do the drawing at, like, 9:20 or so."...and I remembered last year, I had to work early the next morning at Barnes & Noble for our Cafe' inventory.  I told Kim I wanted to leave at 9 and she said we'd leave right after the drawing.  She so badly wanted one of the bambini to win a telescope "We'll get a better look at that Big Dipper" she told me with a smile and a squeeze of my hand.  And I remember it exactly as Cody remembered it...the drawing was late, we ended up leaving around 9:30...and yes, it happened that way again this year.  Except, I was hoping one of the kids would win one this year, so we could get a better look at the Big Dipper, for Kim.  No such luck...

We had a good day today.  Great Sunday start, going to Our Mother of Sorrows with Angie (bionic knee doing good!), Andrea, Mario, Lexy, Breanna, Autumn and Tonio (we let Cody sleep in today!) - the we all went to Viro's, meeting Aut's teacher Casey, her husband Jack, grandmother, friends Julie, Josh and Alisha - Vito graciously saves us the 'big table' each week for our family.  We grazed for two hours!!

                            The girls were playing with my phone during brunch and took these shots.
We zipped home, picked up Cody and met Janene at Skate Country so the kids could burn off some of their breakfast energy!  Then, dropped Janene's son Brendon and Cody at the skate park, 'cuz they didn't get enough energy out!

Tonio is ready to skate with the ladies!

Angie's youngest daughter, Kim was hosting 'bunko' night at her house - so Andrea dropped off Breanna (we already had Lexy), we took Brendon, too and we met Kim's husband, Rashon at Peter Piper Pizza, with his two, Mariah and Micah and Andrea's son, David.  It was the busiest I've ever seen it!  This place is huge, too - it used to be the Linens 'N Things that I managed for a couple of years.  It even has a mini roller coaster in it!  The kids went on it several times and played many games, oblivious to the noise around them.

Breanna, David and Mariah enjoy that Peter Piper pie!
As if this wasn't enough fun, Rashon said 'let's go get ice cream!'.  A new burger place, called Culver's just opened - it was equally crowed and chaotic!

It was pretty late by the time we were done with ice cream and swung by to pick up Brendon and Cody at the skate park...we dropped the girls off to Mario and kept Brendon with us to sleep over with Cody. 
Just getting settled in at 11 - the boys watching the classic "Fight Club"...'this is your life, and it's ending one moment at a time.' Tyler Derden, Autumn and Antonio watching Rango, starring Johnny Depp, together...tired, but happy...

And they have the day off from school tomorrow!!

"He gives strength to the weary..."
          Isaiah 40:29



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