Teacher Professor

August 2, 2010

Other Places- Other Times

Filed under: Home Things — Teacher Professor @ 11:18 am

OR- How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Please forgive me- I know that this smacks of showing you all of my vacation slides… so grab some chips and dip, make yourself comfortable on that sofa, and enjoy!

I’ve been so busy living my life, I haven’t had time to reflect about it (i.e. write about it).  Which, perhaps, gives me some appreciation of my daughter.  Without the burden of words, it’s been all experiential for the past two weeks.  New places to see, new foods to eat, emotions of love and appreciation and humor, and a feeling of all things being right in the moment- right here, right now.  No demands, no needs, other than “What are we going to do today?”  Oh- and LOTS of Monopoly Deal.

Of course, we’re back now, which mean that I have to switch into words and plans and organization- all of those things that my children struggle with.  Little wonder that we were all happier these past weeks- I got to live in their world, rather than forcing them to live in mine.  But for just a moment- I will remember, and I will hold that world close.  And I will appreciate them- and holidays.  And Monopoly Deal…

The visual elements:

San Miguel-the oldest church in North America- since 1610

Rebuilding- again.

An altar older than the United States

with a bell cast in 1352, and brought here in the 1600’s- when it was already old.  American history feels very young…

Acoma Pueblo (Sky City)- the oldest continuously-settled community in North America- since 800AD. They had an extensive trading community with the Aztecs and the Plains Indians- with no wheel or horses. There are symbols of parrots and shells all over.

The kiva (places of religion and education) entrances are ladders, designed to pierce the sky to make it rain.  The entire culture is based around the rain and the forces of nature.  No television, no electricity.  Pure.  Clean.  And really, really cold in the winter.

The humor- this is the only tree on the mesa- known as the Acoma National Forest

The drive up

The view

Apparently, the ladders were working their magic when we were there.  It rained… briefly, but it rained.

The way down- either a 10-minute hike or a 2- second fall

Looking out

I LOVED these hats; they were well-weathered by the end

Two families- ours and sculpture

With Daddy- on top of the world

Bandelier National Monument– The Anasazi (Ancient Ones) lived here from 800AD to 1150AD.

Frijoles (Beans) Canyon dwellers-Valley living during the summer

Cliff dwelling in the winter- south facing cliffs that were much warmer

Our new house?

Ray was too anxious to get all the way up- but he made it this far!


With Daddy- home is where family is!


The ancient cliff-dwellers left in 1150 AD, but their humanity remains.  They, too, liked to decorate.

Los Alamos

Home of Los Alamos National Laboratories

Where Fat Man and Little Boy- the first atom bombs- were developed in secret from 1943-1945.  We all know how that turned out…

Developing scientific skills…

Driving home

Where God spoke

and promised…

El Rancho de los Golondrinas– The Ranch of the Swallows. A continuation of our exploration in history.  This was a stopover on the Camino Real from Mexico City to Santa Fe in the 1700s.

Food storage is… different in the Southwest

as was transportation.  The Spanish brought the wheel- and the horse.

Practicing being the teacher in a one-room schoolhouse

Weighing the corn

ground at the mill

and then baking the bread.

Back on the Road again…

Leaving New Mexico

Patient Bailey Dog

Stops Along the Way- Cahokia Mounds, IL

They also were around from 800-1150AD- and the town was bigger than London at the time, 20,000 people lived here!

St. Louis

The Arch- built to commemorate the arched bridge that opened up St. Louis to westward expansion after the Civil War

Climbing the stair to the ride up- and he did it!

Getting into the capsule to take us to the top- a bit like riding a Ferris Wheel.  I got queasier than they did.

The view from the top- notice the shadow.  Getting there was much more exciting than being up there.  Hot and stuffy!

The real and the small

Louisville– A brief visit with Jack

Trading Pokemon

Finding the Waterfall

Building a Fort


Feeding an ankylosaurus at the Zoo… an animatronic adventure

Jack and Ray have each other’s back in moments of danger

And this doesn’t even begin to touch the sensations of good Mexican food eaten, the time talking to Mamamum, the coolness of the days, seeing my friends the Crespins, the multi-lingual experience of listening to Debo’s Brazilian jazz in a sushi restaurant in New Mexico, the last night of looking at the stars and the songs we listened to and the books we read.

But throughout it, there was loveAnd there was Monopoly Deal… a card game we played at every stop, every day… The game of the summer.

We had a great time… and I loved living a life in the moment…


  1. I loved living the moments with you all!

    Comment by Mamamum — August 2, 2010 @ 1:08 pm | Reply

  2. It was ALL of us- the whole family together- that made it the best of all! Next year: Chaco and Mesa Verde…

    Comment by profmother — August 2, 2010 @ 1:59 pm | Reply

  3. what a delicious trip!

    Comment by jess — August 2, 2010 @ 5:05 pm | Reply

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