Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"As far as the East is from the West..."

When you travel to certain parts of our country, there are so many wonders to behold.  When you consider that the Lord has cast our sins as far as the East is from the West, it sounds pretty far...but when you're standing on top of a mountain looking at the world stretched out before you, going both East and West...going on for miles and miles...as far as the eye can see...it's then that you really get a picture of just how far the East is from the West.  This is how I felt on the 5th day of our trip... 

Once more, we spent quite a bit of time in the car.  When you get to certain parts of certain states, towns are pretty spread out...so to make sure we would have a place to stay, we kept going.  We hopped out a time or two to stretch our legs, but other than that, Lilyana entertained herself with her giant plush girafe and we pushed on...

Be forewarned...this post contains lots of scenery pictures...there isn't much to photograph inside of the car, and my camera batter was reeeeeeeeally low, so the amount of pictures continually dropped. :(

 As I mentioned above, if you don't keep pushing on when you have the chance, you end up without a place to lay your weary head.  After spending what seemed  lifetime on that old bumpy road, we found a spot to get some sleep.  This is, by far, the best view from our windows!

 Okay, okay...so yes, we did end up sleeping in the car!  After removing our luggage, food, souvenirs, etc.., and laying the back seat down, we had a cozy little room!  Thankfully, Ben packed some JIC items...(for those of you who are like me and have to have your BIL's explain what JIC means, it stands for "just in case".)...two sleeping bags, one wool blanket, pillows, etc...  I thought it was freezing outside, but Ben insists that it didn't get that cold...but I'm sure it got close!  Lilyana was snug as a bug.

 After a quick breakfast and then loading the car back up, we were on our way again!  That girafe isn't Lilyana's BIG one, the one she talked to the entire trip, but she loves the pink one, too.  
We were unpleasantly surprised to find that just around the corner from our "room" was a lodge.......

 Behold the great Fish Lake!  This is only part of the lake.  It curves around the foot of the mountain on the left and keeps going.  
Pops, we should take the sailboat out here!!!!

 As we meandered through the state of Utah, we spent a good portion of our drive with this for our view.  Ben wants to get some when we build our dream home. :)

See those nasty yellow flowers...they are nasty yellow flowers...had me sneezing and itching like crazy!
I used the YL Thieves spray orally and then put the Harmony blend on my sternum and the Valor blend on the bottom of my feet to help get my system back in order. 

 As far as the East is from the West is purty far, now, ain't it?

 Standing up there makes one feel awfully teeny-tiny...

 Ahhh!!!!  Where does the road go?!?!  And NO guard rails?!?!?!

 Ben taking in the breathtaking view.  And it's soooo peaceful up there!  

 We love staying off of freeways and finding back roads...they're usually more fun to drive, and you never know what you'll find!  This area of Utah reminds me of "The Garden of the Gods" in Colorado...only BIGGER!

 The baby found a cozy place to sit!

 The road in front of us...

 ...the road behind us.  I hope we can make this drive again!

 We spent the next night in a cute little Western town called Caliente, NV.  Since we were already into trains on this trip, we went to see the old train depot in town as well as the museum.  Ben and baby appear to be waiting for another train.  They may have to step back in time if they want to catch one here, though...

 Yes, these happened on the next day, but Ben is going to put up the next post about the ghost town that we visited, so I thought I'd throw these up with this post.

 Okay...does anybody in family remember this guy?!?!  Maybe not this one in particular, but still....
Getting gas before we head out into no-man's-land is important!
Oh, and I got some Rocket Dogs at this hardware store that turned out to be a small mall inside...go figure.

Ben heard that if you go up the road yonder a bit, hop off in between mile markers 81 and 82, take an old dirt road to a well worn foot path, follow that until you get to the bottom of a little knoll, you can dig around, break rocks and find fossilized Trilobites.  

So "Lawrence of Arabia" is digging and looking for one.  We actually did get some pieces of the little bugs, and brought home some other rocks to gently break them at home with proper tools.  The baby was more interested in her nap, so we decided to do a better job hunting when she's a bit older.

So I'll close this post with a picture of what Ben called "Lauren of A-Babia"...

Check back to read Ben's post on the Ghost Town!!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

"And it makes me wanna take a back road. Makes me wanna take the long way home..."

...And that's what we did!  There was no rush to get back home and we knew what general direction we were heading in, so we went out to the back woods. 

With the exception of one very exceptional stop (more on that later!), we spent most of the next day driving.  The view was beautiful, we worked on our lines for the upcoming play and went through our Assyrian cards while snacking and talking...okay, picture time!

As usual, Lilyana was quite perky that morning.  A good night's rest, and she was ready to hit the road once more!

In the last post, I put up a picture of our view at night...this is what we woke up to.  Purty, ain't it?

Ben and I love staying at Bed & Breakfasts, and this one is definitely on our "favorites" list.  It's a beautiful home that was built in 1906 for the same family that built the house we posted pictures of in this previous post.  Loverly wood paneling!

Ben is in his element...over-sized dining room, wood foors, beautiful table, breakfast...and a newspaper.

The view from his end.  But the paper has his attention at the moment...

...that is, until breakfast arrived!!!  Lilyana is getting more and more interested in food!  Can you believe that she's ALMOST 6 months old?!?!? :(

After our morning refreshment, Ben challenged me to a game in the billiard room. 

I really stink at this game, but playing on an old table in an old house is not an opportunity one should pass up!

One of my favorite rooms in the house!  Look at the detail on the wall and ceiling!!!

The grand staircase.  We were on the third story, so getting our luggage up and down was...fun! :)

The front of my new dream home!  The grounds were beautiful, too!  So, if you're ever in Salt Lake City, be sure to book a room here!

And no, they didn't pay me to say that. :)

On our way out of town, we drove by the Mormon Tabernacle.  They sure do know how to build a beautiful building!

While heading down the freeway, we passed this huge building.  It's a little hard to read...I mean, it was a little hard to get a photo once we realized what it was, so for that to take root in the brain, and then trying to grab the camera in time and snap a photo while cruising down the interstate at 80 mph is a little trying on one's nerves...

BUT...it's the Young Living distribution center!!!  We had NO idea that they had one in Utah.  

We also passed through a little town called "Benjamin."  Since finding a sign with the town name seemed impossible, we settled for second best. :)

Okay, okay....so our BIG stop of the day was...The Young Living farm!!!!  When Ben saw the sign on the side of the road, he asked, "Would you like to go?"  Ahhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!  How fun!  We spent quite a bit of time there, which was nice, because I was suffering from some kind of allergy attack.  The ladies there were very helpful and got me set up with some oils.  

Since there is SO much to cover from that stop, we'll have a separate post about that later.
Moving on....
Down a small country road, we drove by this little antique shop.  Ben got all excited when he realized that he had been here before.  The last time he was there was when he was heading out to Illinois for our wedding.  The owner was just tickled pink that Ben was back with a wife and baby in tow! And yes, we left the shop with something else to pack into our car.  A new/old bedside lamp!!!

We pulled off of the nicely paved road to take this back road into the middle of nowhere to see the world's largest organism, Pando...or 106 acres of Aspen trees that have one massive underground root system.  Located in the beautiful park near Fish Lake, Utah, it's quite the drive.

On road was not only blocked by several large rocks that had to be cleared, but we also found this...
The car made it across quite nicely, too!

But our troubles weren't over.  A huge fallen tree blocked the road, too.  And we thought we took the easier route!  There was a "shorter" route, but the sign said that a 4WD Jeep wouldn't make it, so we didn't even consider taking the Subaru down there!

We pulled off to get some pictures and Ben took a quick jog to see the view at the top of the hill.  

There are these nasty yellow flowers blooming all over southern Utah that we're really making my allergies go crazy, so I stayed down with the car and the baby and my oils.

Our trusty rig...she remained faithful and kept going, no matter how tough the road appeared to be.

When the little warning signs on the side of the road have a picture of a cow, they are really trying to warn you in Utah!

We got around another corner, and this is the view that Ben saw from his hill.  We can practically see all of the way to Illinois!!!  Hellooooo family!!!

The Aspen trees.

A beautiful and peaceful drive.
After spending several hours on the road and only traveling about 10 miles, this sign cracked us up!
The sun set very quickly after this photo was taken...we found a place to sleep and it didn't take long for sleep to find us.  

Check back for the next installment tomorrow!  My baby needs some mommy time...

Tiffany for BLT

Friday, September 23, 2011

That train is a beauty, makin' everybody stare, but its only destination is the middle of nowhere....

Well, being in the middle of Nowheresville, UT and continuing on into Notown, NV mean Nointernet.  And when there is Nointernet, there will be Noblogposts. 

BUT, after a few busy days, we stumbled upon a little town with a hotel that offered internet!  And since we about to hit the road once again, I'll give you a quick post from our third day away from home!

 As you saw from the last post, we stayed in Ogden, which turned out to be a good thing, because Ben left his signature hat at Grandpa's apartment!  Which meant that we were able to swing by his place again and have lunch with him!  What at treat!  This is a view of our hotel from the eleventh floor.  Four windows down and the two on the end were ours...

 A view down the street.  This is the street that my great-grandfather used to walk down every day to get to work.  The brick building at the end of the street is the Union Pacific Railway Station, where he worked for so long.  They don't use it as a station anymore (which is SOOO sad, because it's SOOOO pretty!), so it is now the museum.

 Hey look, Thomas...this guy is afraid of spiders, too!!!!

 Lilyana told us that she wanted to take a ride on the Train of Tomorrow 
 Can you believe that it only took them SIX years to build the Transcontinental Railroad?!?  Look how far it went!

 These pilings are from the original Trestle Bridge that went across the Salt Lake.  It was built in 1902...crazy, huh?

 My and my girl!

 Lilyana taking a seat on the potbelly stove that my Great-Grandfather donated to the museum.  It's new home is in the caboose in the Railroad musuem.

 Ben and the baby checking their weight...

 They want to drive the train, too!!!!

 Cool old signs.

 On the way out of the the train museum, they have tracks and tracks of model trains that give an idea of what the original tracks would've looked like.  Lilyana LOVED them.

 The second picture in this post showed you a view of Ogden from our hotel.  Now here is a view of Ogden from the train station!  See the red arrow, that was where we stayed!

 Must be cold in there...

The Round House is there anymore, but we found this picture of it.  My Great-Grandfather worked there.


 Outside of the train museum, they have the Browning Gun museum!  We had to stop in just for Nic...  This place had a TON of guns!

 And I want that one...ain't it purty?!?!

 Ben, on the other hand, wants this one....

 Or he would settle for that one...

 Ben and Baby waiting for the train.  Isn't it a shame that they don't use this place anymore?

 No trains were coming that day, so we moved on.

 The beautiful station.  Ben is in there somewhere...

 We love old buildings.  The baby took this picture...

 The French sent a bunch of little trains to the U.S. as a way of saying "Merci" after we sent them food and supplies after WWII.  They called them the "Forty and Eight Cars" because those are the dimensions of the car.  Many of the WWII Veterans remember riding in these cars through the French countryside.

 Oh how I wish these still worked!

 Ben jumping cars like they do in the movies.

 Moving along down to Salt Lake...the car started smoking, so Ben pulled over to check things out.  All is good, though and we're still alive!

 He managed to find a really pretty place to pull over, though...

 Now how would you like THIS for a front entrance to your house?!?!

 Okay, so maybe there are too many steps.

 Ahhh, the marble entry way... Yeah, I could live here!

 Now, would we make this an office, or our sitting room?

 He tells some funny jokes.

 Self portraits in front of the capitol.  The really strange thing about the capitol building, is that they didn't have any security running around, no metal detectors and I think we saw THREE people in there!  It was soooo quiet...

 Oh, what a loverly room!  We stumbled upon a B&B, The Inn on the Hill, which was a few blocks away from the capitol.  It was cozy, beautiful and fun!  And they were totally fine with us bringing a baby with us!

 The other side of the room.  Lilyana was too happy to be on the floor rolling around!

 I loved this bathroom!

And the view from our window.  

We took more pictures of the house the next morning, but those belong to the post about Day 4...so you'll have to wait to see those!  

Now, the road beckons, so we're off once more!

Reporting from Notown, NV...

Tiffany for BLT

But you know there's vict'ry in the Lord I say, 
Vict'ry in the Lord, 
Cling to the Father and His holy name, 
And dont go ridin' on that Long Black Train