Thursday, July 21, 2011

My Awesome Week in Estes Park, Colorado

Last Saturday we got to Estes Park, Colorado.  It is way up high in the Rocky Mountains.  I came here when I was four too.  My family loves it here and I do too.

On the first day we went to Rocky Mountain National Park.  We saw lots of Elk and snow.  I even brought Frankie Pickle with me.  My Mom took my picture with Frankie at the Continental Divide.
I liked seeing the flowers and snow way up high in the mountains.  This is called the tundra.  My Mom and I looked up tundra on the internet so we could learn more about it.  In the tundra the trees do not grow because of the high altitude.  It is a lot colder up there too.  
We stayed at Mary's Lake Lodge.  This is where we stayed two years ago.  It is on the side of a mountain so we had a pretty view of everything around us.
I had a great time swimming with my Dad.  I am in the corner of the pool in this picture.  We bought some big noodles in Estes Park so it was fun to pretend they were swords with Dad.
We ate at the lodge a lot.  We could see our cabin from the porch where we ate. 
There is this giant old hotel called the Stanley Hotel.  We went on a tour.  The tour lady told us all kinds of stories about ghosts in the hotel.  I was scared when she told us a story about a cowboy ghost on the 4th floor.  My Dad and I also got into a closet where they say Lord Dunraven (he owned all of the land around Estes Park a long time ago) has been seen and felt.  It was freaky.  
Dad, Brianna and I rode horses one morning.  I saw a lot of real cowboys and horses here.  We rode into   the mountains and had breakfast in the woods.  We had sausage, eggs and pancakes.
My horses name was Velvet.  He was very nice.  I have never rode on a horse in the mountains before.Brianna has a horse and I have rode him before with her but never by myself. I learned how to make Velvet go and turn.
They had these funny painted things I put my head in.  It looked like I was a cowboy.  
We went way up high in the mountains.  I rode up by the guide since I was the youngest.  It was a lot of really cool.

Tomorrow we are going home.  I am excited to get home so I can watch the Disney Channel anytime I want, see Charlie my dog and have pretend wars with all my toys at home.  

I have had a SUPER time in Estes Park and can't wait to come back again.  

Monday, July 18, 2011

Lots of aWeSoMe in Fort Collins

The first stop on our vacation was Fort Collins where my Great Aunt Mary and Uncle Pat live.  I was really excited to meet Pat for the first time and see Aunt Mary again.  I was also going to meet their kids....Arlo, Vanessa and Stuart.  And Arlo's girl Jasmine.  
The first thing I did was make friends with their dog, Max.  The minute I got there he wanted to play catch with me.  Pat let me throw the ball in this little holder that made the ball go far. 
And another thing Max could do was run in the road because they lived at a dead end.  It was so much fun throwing the ball and having him run to get it over and over again.
I really liked hanging out with Pat.  I told him all about Frankie Pickle and how I was taking pictures of me reading all over the place this summer.  We thought it would be a good place outside on his swing.  Pat tried to get my bookmark....I was giving him a look in this picture.  :) 
I went to the park after dinner with Pat and Mary.  Then Pat taught me how to play Parcheesi.  He thought I was very good at math.  It was so much fun.  
When we were in Fort Collins we met Mom's friends Kelly and Michelle for lunch at Rio Grande. They are both teachers too and very nice. We ate outside and after I ate I threw pennies in the fountain with my wishes.
 We took a picture can barely see me.
The next morning we went to a fun place for breakfast called Snooze.  Brianna and I had fresh apple juice while we waited for our table.
I had blueberry lemon bar pancakes and sausage.  Mom had a sweet potato pancake and Brianna had a red velvet pancake. They were all so good. It was like eating dessert for breakfast.
After breakfast we walked around the downtown area.  There was music, food, water and lots of people.  I found this big bear to read Frankie Pickle by for a little bit.
And we were excited to find this shop.....The Bike Library.  There was a sign in their window that said, "Come check us out and check out a bike."  It was just like a library with books.  I brought Frankie Pickle to read here too. 
After two days of being in Fort Collins, it was time to go to Estes Park for a week.  When we left, Pat and Mary had us follow them on their really cool motorcycle through the mountains.  It was a back way that went by a giant lake with lots of boats on it.
When we got to Masonville, we said goodbye to Pat and Mary.  I love my new friend, Pat (or Popeye as I liked to call him).  I had so much fun playing with him, Stuart and Max.  

It was so aWeSoMe at Pat and Mary's.

Fort Collins is pretty awesome too.  I can't wait to go back again. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

My AWESOME Vacation to the Mountains

Yesterday, we started out on our vacation to the mountains.  We are going to Colorado to visit family in Fort Collins and then will stay in Estes Park for a week.
My sister Brianna and I are excited....I will have fun sitting by her on our trip.  We picked out a lot of great movies to bring with us.  She thought it would be fun to watch all of the Harry Potter movies since the last one came out in the theatre today.
When we got to Omaha we stopped to lunch with my Mom's best friend Kristina.  She had me put on her Google sunglasses so she could take a picture for the #googleshades project that she has created with her friends.  They are cool and I can't wait to see all of the pictures she gets with her students wearing them. 

It is almost 700 miles from Van Meter to Fort Collins.  I liked following along on the map to see where we were.  
When we got to Paxton, Nebraska we went to Ole's Big Game Steakhouse.  We have stopped and ate here before on our way to Colorado.

After we Nebraska, we drove through Wyoming for a little bit and then into Colorado.  I was so excited when Mom told me to look at this sign and it said COLORADO.  We made it!  

Today we are going to a lake and river in Fort Collins.  I might even try white water rafting.  

I am excited to have an adventure.  

This will be an AWESOME day for sure.  

Friday, July 8, 2011

My Mom Got To Hang Out With My Favorite Author....Eric Wight!

Last week my Mom (@shannonmmiller) went to Philadelphia to a big meeting called ISTE.  She presented about being a librarian and using technology with us kids.  She has a lot of friends there but made new ones too.

She stayed with her friend Joyce after ISTE and on Friday she met my FAVORITE author Eric Wight!  I couldn't believe it when she told me that she just had lunch with him.  I was so bummed I wasn't there too. She told me that he was super cool and really nice. I asked her if he was like Frankie Pickle.

Mom didn't tell me that Eric gave her some things to give to me.  You will never believe what he gave me!?!?!?!  He signed one of the first copies of his new book Frankie Pickle, The Mathematical Menace for me!  He told Mom that he got them that day.  He also gave her two pickle pins, a thing for my door, a little game card and a really awesome banner that says Frankie Pickle.  

Frankie Pickle, the Mathematical Menace doesn't come out until the end of July so I felt really lucky.  

I was so excited that he signed my new book just like the first two I got from Mr. Schu.  I couldn't wait to read this one too.  I loved all of the new pictures that Eric drew.  

I took the Frankie Pickle flag and put in my Bat Cave with all of my cars and trucks.  I think it makes a pretty good banner for that.  It could be called the Frankie Pickle Bat Cave.  My Mom told me that Eric loves super heros so I bet he would like that too.  

You can read more about Eric on this website.  He is also on Twitter @eric_wight and even has a Facebook page for Frankie Pickle himself.  

And this week, Frankie Pickle and Argyle took off with Mr. Schu on his road trip that he always takes with his friend Donna.  Eric created Frankie Pickle and Argyle just for their road trip out West.  

I have been having fun watching where Frankie will show up next.  You can go to Mr. Schu's blog Watch. Connect. Read. to follow them too.  

So if you like adventures, fun stories and kids who use their imagination.....check out the Frankie Pickle books!  

I know you will love them just like me! 

And Eric....THANK YOU the awesome things you gave my Mom for me.  I LOVE your new book and cannot wait to share it with my friends when school starts.