Posts Tagged ‘ Lake Tahoe ’

I Found A Trail And At The End Was You

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

3 years, 7 months.

Dear Jack,

While on our summer annual vacation in Lake Tahoe this past week, we stayed at a resort called The Village at Squaw Valley; where they held the 1960 Olympics.

I’ve never been an athlete or even into watching organized sports. I mountain bike and run- those are my weekly physical activities.

And whenever I get the chance, I love to hike!

It just so happens that where we stayed was surrounded by huge, hikeable mountains. So for a couple of mornings, your 19 year-old cousin Matt and I decided to scale the face of the mountains; along the way of the ski lifts. Sure, there were service roads and “official” trails, but for us, they simply served as landmarks for us.

As you can see, we helped save a baby snake from most likely being soon run over by a service vehicle. We even hiked high enough to touch the snow at the top of the mountain; as well as to the very “spaceshippy” ski lift operation building.

After you heard about all the excitement, you began asking me, “Daddy, can I go on a hike with you? Can we find a trail?”

Granted, there were no trails appropriate for a 3 and a half year-old little boy, but you and I found some anyway.

One included the entryway to a restaurant called Plumpjack’s, which had a cool waterfall and a bridge. There was also a “spaceship” at the base of the mountain that you and I were able to check out.

We also “hiked” along the stone pathway leading to a small pond where you got to throw rocks until your heart was content.

It was one of the most memorable parts of our vacation, spending that father and son time with you.

Of course, the flattering part of this story for me is that you wanted to “hike a trail” with me because you observed that’s “what the guys are doing.”

I love it that you wanted to follow the model I unintentionally set for you.

Just like the lyrics of the theme song to “Who’s The Boss?” say, “Found a trail and at the end was you.”

That line not only serves as the perfect way to summarize the end of our summer vacation, but also something else…

Make sure you don’t miss my next letter.

 

Love,

Daddy

 

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Family Summer Vacation Road Trip: Sacramento To Lake Tahoe, CA

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

3 years, 7  months.

Dear Jack,

When it comes to family summer vacations, I have always felt that the photos taken during them truly tell the stories better than I could tell them myself. When I think back on this past week, which memories will serve as the forever bookmarks in the history of our family’s story?

For me, it was the quality time you and I spent together. Granted, our annual family vacations also serve as the annual family reunions for Mommy’s side of the family.

(She is number 9 of 10 kids, scattered across the country, so getting the majority of the family together takes some special planning and management!)

With that being said, spending time with my own son during our family vacations can be a challenge, because that’s the only time of year when you get to see your many cousins, aunts, aunts, uncles, and grandma.

It’s something I’m very understanding of. So I wait for those opportunities to get some one-on-one time with you.

We loaded up the Toyota Highlander for the 118 mile/2 hour drive from Mommy’s hometown to Sacramento, CA to Lake Tahoe (Squaw Valley), which is near the Nevada border.

By the way, it was the perfect vehicle to take on that road trip: plenty of room for our luggage, as well as a rotating array of relatives who hopped in during the midst of the caravan.
You told me that your favorite part of the Highlander was the windows because you see all the mountains we were driving through.
And that was truly one of the highlights of our vacation: the scenery on the road trip itself.
It’s not everyday that you get to look at the window and see huge rocky mountains and clear blue skies… and not much else. That kind of scenery is very crucial to the psychological aspect of taking a vacation!
As for Lake Tahoe itself, I think you had more fun than anyone- the lake’s sandy coast served as the biggest sandbox you’ve ever seen!
You spent hours burying your plastic dinosaur and Hot Wheels in the sand. It was almost miraculous we were able to locate all your toys by the time we left.
In between “sand avalanches” I helped you locate rocks and sticks to throw into the waves. You declared: “Tomato fight! Potatoes!”
And that’s one of those memories that will serve as one of the forever bookmarks in the history of our family’s story. It really doesn’t take much- just knowing I’ve got some time to hang out with you and be goofy together.
To me, that’s bigger than real life.
Love,
Daddy
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If We Couldn’t Laugh We Would All Go Insane

Friday, May 16th, 2014

3 and a half years!

Dear Jack,

Have you noticed how many of our stories that I write to you about take place in the car? It’s because the car is our exclusive “meeting place.”

It’s our… mobile tree house.

It’s our place to be quiet together, as well as our place to laugh together about silly stuff we make up on the spot.

Finding ways to make life fun is important. After all, a wise man from Alabama once said, “If we couldn’t laugh we would all go insane.”

More on that in just a second…

By me driving you to and from school each day, I get to know a version of you that perhaps Mommy doesn’t- all because I’m the one driving you.

In an attempt to make it quality time for us, I wanted to find a style of music on SiriusXM that we both could appreciate and that would make the drive fun and relaxing.

I assumed our favorite station would be jazz… but it wasn’t.

Instead, it’s channel 24: Radio Margaritaville.

Basically, every third song is Jimmy Buffett. The rest fall into the categories of mellow rock and/or reggae; including Jack Jackson, Dave Matthews Band, and Bob Marley.

Before discovering Radio Margaritaville, you didn’t like me having the radio on for more than a few minutes.

Now, with Jimmy Buffett and friends, you never ask me to turn the radio off. You make it a game to try to figure out when it’s Jimmy Buffet singing the song:

“Who’s singing this song, Daddy? Jimmy Buffett?”

Son, I think you and I are becoming Parrotheads.

Fate would have it that back in December 2011, we did a road trip from Naples to Key West in a Chevy Volt; which now that think about it, was my very first car review.

It was such an awesome trip. We got to experience driving across the Florida Keys and got to stay in cool, old house from the 1930s with a spiral staircase. Jimmy Buffet kind of stuff.

Back then, in December 2011, you had just turned 1. So you don’t remember any of that. It was also your first trip to the beach.

As of today, you are officially 3 and a half. By this point, you are actually going to be remembering our family road trips; like the one we have coming up next month, from Sacramento to Lake Tahoe.

We can be father and son Parrotheads there. But I better grow a pencil thin mustache first…

 

Love,

Daddy

 

P.S. Happy 3rd (and a half) Birthday!

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Vacation Destination: “The Snow” To See Santa Claus

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

2 years, 9 months.

Dear Jack,

I’m going to start paying better attention to the class collaborations hanging up on the walls of your classroom.

Even though I receive your art work and other projects each week from your teacher, I don’t necessarily always see the group work unless I make an effort to look for it.

So here’s your latest contribution:

Your class was asked, “Where do we want to go on vacation?”

Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like your answer was a bit different than your classmates’ responses…

While your friends all replied with classic (and by that, I mean normal) answers, you said you want to go to the snow to see Santa Claus.

It’s impossible for me to not think that’s hilarious.

First of all, we haven’t even talked about Santa Claus since… last Christmas?!

So I’m really curious how the thought of Santa suddenly surfaced in September.

Next, I like how “the snow” is simply the location of Santa Claus.

Then, building on that, is the fact that you’re being very proactive about your mission. You don’t have time to wait for Santa to come visit you and bring you toys! No way. You’re going straight to him.

Lastly, I laugh because once you travel to “the snow” and find Santa, then what? How long until either A) he gives what you really came for, which is gifts or B) you just straight up ask him for the gifts you came for?

Forget about the zoo, the beach, or the measly park. You want to go to extremes for our next vacation.

And I respect your plan. It comes across as very… entrepreneurial. That makes me proud, having recently finished the top-selling book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.

Well, Mommy just informed me today that for our next vacation, in June 2014, we’ll be going to Lake Tahoe.

For what it’s worth, there’s definitely snow there…

 

Love,

Daddy

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