Not much from the children of late--we've been busy preparing for our Southern California field trip. We are planning to visit Los Angeles, Palm Desert, Joshua Tree National Park, Las Vegas, Death Valley National Park, and hopefully Sequoia National Park. We'd like to see a bristlecone pine on a side trip as well (oldest living things on earth).
As I warned might be happening a couple posts ago, we've also been buying a new (to us) car: "Yota"! [I'm not sure what my preoccupation is with naming things associated with this place, but--unlike with the yurt and our trail--at least I kept "Stew" out of the name this time. This is partially due to the fact that "Stewius" was vetoed early on by Eli. FYI, the "Yota" name is also pending familial approval, but calling it "the Prius" seems a bit dull and too easily confused with the name of our other car (which also starts with a "P")]. We are excited about the possibility of some gas savings and a new, somewhat fancy-ish vehicle. Compared to the van, it is a significant step up in those two respects. I got 76 mpg on the 6 mile drive home from the dealer today using "pulse and glide" technique (fellow Prius owners may want to Google it, if you aren't familiar with it). Despite this, we will miss the van for all of its practicality. It served us well.
We are still deciding whether to take Yota on our trip as we may encounter some snow along the way, especially if La Nina finally starts to break (as some are predicting will happen next week). Anyhow, school books, warm coats, bathing suits, and hiking shoes will be stuffed into the back of one of our vehicles tomorrow and the journey will begin.
I'll try to make a post or two from the road with some reflections from the kids.