Saturday, August 27, 2016

new mexico: white sands

another highlight of our vacation in new mexico was a little road trip we took down to white sands national park. we arrived sunday evening in time to play in the dunes after the heat of the day had cooled and before dark. (pretty sure that was the best two hour block of caleb's life.) we went back monday morning, but it was quite hot, so we retreated not too long after ten.

white sands is a really, really amazing natural wonder. spectacular to see and feel--nothing quite like we've ever seen or felt before. and the sleds are a definite *must.*

psst...a shout out to our accommodations, white sands motel, which was a great place to stay. so cool, so hip, so retro, they don't even have a website!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

new mexico: hot air balloon ride

while we were in new mexico, my grandmother, lucile, celebrated her ninety-first birthday. before her ninetieth birthday, she came up with a bucket list of sorts of things she'd like to do. last year, she rode a motorcycle. this year, a hot air balloon!

i do not have a picture of everyone together (face palm!) but our balloon passengers were anna, danton, summer, afton, me, kenny, emme, lucile, matt and beka.

it was an awesome ride and a once in a lifetime experience for sure. 

i got a little shaky in the knees everytime summer looked over the edge (afton and danton were too short, thankfully), but it was otherwise lovely and serene. 

fun fact: we landed at the post office.

the wheeler girls with the birthday lady herself!

helping emme fill the hot air balloon with --you guessed it! -- air :)

up, up and away...

the girls were able to view out of these square openings (used for climbing into the basket).
afton had her ears plugged most of the time because the burner turning on was too loud for her.
(the noise level would oscillate between blissfully quiet and alarmingly loud.)

a room with a view.

a toast to grandma lucile!


thanks, grandma, for letting us share in your awesome day!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

new mexico: ABQ biopark

our first stop in new mexico was the abq biopark. we were only able to visit the botanic gardens and the bugarium, but it was good to let these littles get out and stretch their legs after all the traveling they had done the day before. 

also, the botanic gardens has a railroad garden with a miniature railway the kids can help operate. they played with and watched those trains for probably forty-five minutes (and would have done so longer if their parents hadn't been so hungry and anxious for lunch...)

luke, afton, summer, caleb, danton, dallin
(not pictured: derek and eli)


we didn't pack a stroller for the first time ever.
this munchkin still couldn't quite keep up, so he was toted around like this a lot.

desert flora.

exploring a fish pond.

dad's turn!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

wedded bliss

introducing mr. and mrs. schmatty and schbeka young!
(aka matt and beka)

we just got back from a little summer jaunt down to albuquerque, new mexico to see these two lovelies marry and enjoy some time with family. more to come on the trip, but first, wedding pics! 

beka and matt (emily's youngest brother).

mothers and sons (the six young family grandsons).

girl's club.

wheeler boys.

emmelie with the newest member of the family, baby derek.

all the boys.

entertaining toddlers at a wedding: not for the faint of heart.

matt and ken.

father-of-the-groom, dennis, toasting the newlyweds.

beautiful mother-of-the-groom.

dancing the night away.

congrats matto and beka! (currently off in iceland on their honeymoon.)
wishing you many years of happily, happily wedded bliss.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

gap toothed

afton lost her two front teeth this past week.

when those same two teeth had just come in here.