Zoo, Indepence Day, & Colorado

4:36 PM

Peacock outside the zoo

 Summer brought with it a plentiful amount of thunder/lightning storms. The lightning shows do not cease to amaze. Their constancy reminds me of how some people set their Christmas lights to music. I tried attaching a video of it, but it won't work right. I do, however, have it on my Instagram (kaley.barrow).
The goose liked the Misty Mate
This owl's face is hysterical
Spencer and I drove to the Roswell zoo on a mutual day off. Since we didn't leave until lunchtime, we decided to start with a picnic. We were grateful we brought a "Misty Mate" to help keep us cool, because it was a HOT day. That could be why we didn't see any of the big, hairy animals such as the bears and cougars. Perhaps they were hiding. Or maybe they no longer have them in their said habitats. Admission was at no cost, and for the price, it was a pleasant little zoo. We saw the tail end of a beaver, some animals we grew up with, and the empty habitat of vinegaroons and scorpions. Which I was really curious to see (behind thick, protective glass). Alas, I suppose I will just have to wait until I have a run in. *Shiver* Really, though, it was a nice way to spend a couple hours.

4th of July Muddy Buddies

We enjoyed our first major holiday together on Independence Day. We started it out right with "Freedom Toast" for breakfast (my dad's name for "French Toast," but I took it farther and made it literal). We played tennis afterwards until we could no longer take the heat - which did not take very long. So we settled on a cooler activity.

*Insert Jaws Theme Song here* 

Stand-up Paddleboarding
We spent the hottest portion of the day at Roswell's salt-water lake at Bottomless Lakes State Park. It was nothing like the lakes we were accustomed to in Nor-Cal, but it was refreshing and fun to get in the water. We rented a paddle-board (which was really just a board-shaped foam cut-out) and took it out on the lake for an hour. We tested our skills stand-up paddle-boarding and explored the area. It was our first time using a paddle-board, and that one hour went by too quick. I want us to get our own. Standing sometimes gets boring, so Spencer tested out his hand-stand abilities on the board as well. We saw lots of little fish while paddling, and Spencer found out that his toes are particularly appetizing to fish. They wouldn't stop nibbling on him (video on Instagram and Facebook - must see)!

Me on paddleboard

At Big D's
Spencer's burger

My burger
After the lake, we had a craving for hamburgers, seeing as how everyone at Bottomless was barbecuing their own. We decided to test out Big D's famous burgers in Roswell. It is among the top ten burger joints in the USA, and #2 restaurant in Roswell according to TripAdvisor. Spencer enjoyed his. Mine, on the other hand, was too eccentric. On top of the burger, was an assortment of flavors including red chile, aged cheddar, and tomato and avocado lime mayo. Also, it came on one bun. This bun was no normal bun, either. It was fried and made out of some strange bread. They called it Native American Fry Bread. If that sounds good to you, then when you go, ask for "The Tomahawk." Unless they rename it, by then, to something more politically correct. Their sweet potato fries were bomb, though!
Alien-dressed band playing on Main St. Man on stilts walking around.

From Big D's, we walked around Main Street where the annual UFO festival was happening. For some reason, they have that, the cosmic-con, and a carnival on the same weekend as July 4th. We saw Chewbacca from Star Wars. Proof would have cost us $10, so we have no picture. There were plenty of people walking around with foil on their heads and dressed up. Spencer saw Garret Wang from Star Trek at the cosmic-con.

I got the idea off of Pinterest to make a flag cherry-pie. A true "American Pie." I looked up a recipe for cherry pie, and made up my own for the blueberry portion (basically just downsizing the cherry recipe). I made the crust from scratch, too. I insisted on buying a box of 101 cookie cutters from Walmart, so I could cut out stars for the top of the pie. It turned out quite well! It was almost too pretty to eat.

Roswell's firework show was 45mins long! On top of that, fireworks were going off in every direction (with the citizens showing off their own). Basically, that whole week we had a show, as every one in town had bought their own. I feel bad for the light sleepers out here. The display was impressive, with the normal aerial fireworks, and lower ones that you had to be semi-close to see.

My "I don't like June Bugs" face
Googled image of a June Bug
I begged Spencer to let us watch the fireworks on our car. For as soon as we got to the field and laid out our blanket, we were attacked by bugs. Later, I found out these are christened june bugs. There was no shortage of them, for no matter how many we squashed, more would appear. You could look out on the field and see them flying around EVERYWHERE. It was disgusting. I looked to see if anybody's reaction was similar to mine (hiding under blankets and a hoodie), but nobody seemed to notice! We (I) somehow toughed it out, basically by sitting on top of Spencer to get as far off the ground as possible. Spencer eventually gave up trying to placate me, and I had to start killing them myself.

Getting out of the parking lot afterwards took forever, but after that, it only took us a minute to get home. It was an exhausting, but fun Friday. Let's just say I didn't have much energy for work the next day. I am so glad that I get to spend these holidays with the man I love!
Let freedom ring

Playing Zombies
Sneaking a peak at the crawdads
Crawdad hunting
Caught! Took the hot dog bait.
As if we haven't been having enough fun, Spencer was able to take time off to drive us up to Colorado to visit family. My parents are road-tripping it and wanted to meet us at my aunt and uncle's house outside of Denver. We left last Friday after Spencer got off work, and made it home last night (Wednesday). It was so nice to get out of New Mexico and experience some cooler weather and be among family! I had missed my brothers tremendously! With the help of my cousins, they had Spencer running around so much he was sore after the first day. I was glad that he had someone who could keep up with his never-ending playful energy. He is so fun, kids love him! We had fun at the park, catching crawdads in the creek, watching movies, and playing.

Indian Cliff Dwellings

Justin's tooth necklace
Justin's 14th birthday was on Monday (the 14th). We woke up to find a doughnut tower cake with candles awaiting him. He is getting so big! We drove to see Indian Cliff Dwellings in the afternoon. It was neat to see, and their museum/gift shop was huge. After dinner and ice cream, Justin opened his gifts. The most memorable being Uncle JaShon the dentist's gift of a real human-tooth necklace. Gross!

The next day was my 21st birthday. Spencer was a dear and made cinnamon rolls for breakfast. I had been looking forward to visiting Mt. Evans and hiking that day with everyone, but unfortunately, a few of us had gotten sick, including Spencer and I. I was not feeling up to going, and Spencer stayed behind with me. We had ice cream and they sang to me, but most of the day I spent sleeping (or trying). Being with my family made it special. Since I slept most of the day, I was able to stay up late and watch a movie with my brothers.

Wednesday we said our goodbyes and made the seven-hour drive home. Hoping to see them again soon! It is always fun having uninterrupted time with Spencer during our hours of driving. Upon our arrival home, I almost felt like I missed the place, and the familiar heat. For about five minutes.

But, where Spencer is, my heart is also. I am so happy to be here with him!

I made lemon zucchini poppyseed bread!

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