Columbia Gorge

We started pretty early today and drove all the way to Columbia Gorge to see a couple of amazing waterfalls. There was a lot of traffic and parking spots were pretty hard to find, but we were lucky every once in a while, especially next to the most beautiful waterfalls. The first waterfall we saw was the Multnomah Falls, where we hiked all the way to the bridge. I wanted to hike more, but daddy was already tired from carrying me all the way. Here are a few pictures:

After this exhausting hike, we had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (generously provided by Roslyn) for lunch. Then we moved on to our next objective: Latourell Falls, where we stood so close to the waterfall that we got wet. On our way to Portland we stopped at the Vista House for a few pictures of the Columbia Gorge.

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Riding ponies

Today I was invited to a cowboy themed birthday party: Jase (a friend of mine from the co-op class I attend at the Richland Community Center) is turning 2. There were some activities that real cowboys and cowgirls rarely get involved in, like playing in a bouncy house or playing in the sand. These were my favorite activities though and mommy had to convince me to try riding the ponies.

Here are a few pictures of me riding and petting real ponies. Of course, after these rides I happily got back to the sand and the bouncy house.

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The White Pass Winter Carnival

To compensate for the lack of snow around here (we only saw it once this winter and it was gone the next day), my parents took me to White Pass. Parna, Maha, Frough and Mohammad joined us for a two-hour drive split by a lunch break. Not only we saw a lot of snow, but also a big castle. Although originally made of snow, the castle had turned into an ice castle (it was very slippery everywhere one could set foot). We played about 30 minutes around the castle, then we retired inside the cabin to drink tea and eat cookies. By the time they were getting ready to close the cabin, we got out once more to slide down the hill, then we drove back home.

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Coba

There was no rush to get to the Coba archaeological site because it is larger and less famous than Tulum and Chichen Itza. We still woke up relatively early and left right after breakfast. We hired a guide who was much less informative than the one at Chichen Itza; or we may have had this perception because the site didn’t offer as much as Chichen Itza did. The site is divided into several sections; we started with the Coba group, where I slept through our guide’s explanations. My parents though learned about stelas: sort of bulletin boards carved in rock, seriously tempered by time, now protected by thatched roofs. They also learned about the elevated Mayan roads called sacbe; one of them was approximately 100 km long and almost reached Chichen Itza. We saw a few more structures and a ball court in the Coba section, then we took a pedibike toward Nohoch Mul group.

The only thing better than in Chichen Itza was that visitors can climb Nohoch Mul (the tallest pyramid on the Yucatan peninsula; 42 meters). Daddy climbed it while I was waiting with mommy, then mommy climbed it while I was waiting with daddy. Even though I appear in one of the pictures, it should be noted that I didn’t feel like climbing even a few steps at the bottom of the pyramid.

On our way back to the Coba section, we stopped in the Chumuc Mul section to see a few more structures, the most important of which can be seen in the pictures below.

Now just a few more pictures with today’s heroes:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Tulum

Even though daddy wanted to get to the ruins as early in the morning as possible (to avoid the crowds), we made it there only after 10:00 AM. After we got the tickets, daddy and mommy walked along the wall and pushed the stroller where I was sitting comfortably. The most imposing structure of the site is El Castillo, which may be the reason why we got so many pictures of it:

Walking among the other buildings with a stroller was not easy. In many cases (stairs, sandy paths) mommy had to hold me while daddy carried the stroller. But we managed to see the most important structures and even take pictures of them:

Now let’s move on to the fun part. Tulum ruins were built on a bluff ovelooking the Caribbean sea. The visitors can go down some stairs and spend time at the beach. Of course, we did that, too. While we were trying to build a sand castle resembling El Castillo (visible from the beach), the clouds quickly covered the skies and dumped some rain on us. We took cover under some rocks, and the clouds went away pretty much as fast as they came in (the whole episode was less than 30 minutes).

Here are a few more pictures of us throughout the site:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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At the beach

The resort has three sections: Tulum, Akumal, and Coba (the last one is where our room is). Akumal is the name of the closest city, while Tulum and Coba are the names of other nearby cities where we will go to visit some Mayan temples. Tulum and Akumal sections are very close to the beach, but from Coba we have to take a tram to get to there. Every time we went to the beach daddy got busy building sand castles for me. He always excavated the sand he needed for the castle leaving behind big holes in the ground. Sometimes waves from the sea would fill out the holes with water, making the sand easier to build with. The following pictures show us playing at the beach and building sand castles:

The weather got chillier at sunset, but mommy always had my jacket ready to keep me warm. We used to stay at the beach as long as there was still enough light for me to play. Here are some pictures of us playing late in the day:

I am sure you wonder how the resort looks like when you look at it from the beach, so here are a couple of pictures that – hopefully – answer that question:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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The pools

We spent quite a while in the pools, so dedicating one post to them seems appropriate. The resort has two pools: a “quiet” pool and an “activity” pool. We started at the quiet pool because it was closer to our room, but we also spent time in the activity pool. Going up-and-down the stairs is one of my favorite activities, so guess what I did as soon as I discovered stairs going in the pool?

While daddy was taking these pictures, mommy was right next to me making sure that I don’t fall (she even helped me float in the water). Here are some more activities supervised by mommy:

Daddy was more involved in other types of activities, like jumping in the water and taking me to the deeper side of the pools. Here you can see him in action:

Toys were an important part of the pool experience. I made friends who had different (and more interesting) toys than mine and (luckily), they were willing to share. Here I am playing in the quiet pool

Here are a few pictures of me playing with my toys in the activity pool:

And just a few more random pictures:

This is part of our trip to Mexico: Welcome to Gran Bahia Principe Coba | The pools | At the beach | Tulum | Chichen Itza | Gran Bahia Principe in the dark | Coba | Kids’ club

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Planting a Japanese maple

Today I helped daddy plant a Japanese maple. First of all, daddy made a big hole in our big planter and put a lot of dirt (which I call sand, but that’s a totally different story) inside the white bucket. Then he put the maple inside the hole after he filled it up with water from the orange bucket. Now, this is where I come in and use the hand shovel to get dirt from the white bucket and carefully place it around the maple (see the pictures below).

One thing led to another and I ended up moving the sand from the white bucket inside the water in the orange bucket.

The other thing led to a somewhat different one because I was not happy with the shovel efficiency, so I started using my hands to move the sand from the white to the orange bucket.

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Picking a pumpkin

It has been more than a month now that every Wednesday I go with Parna, mommy, and khaleh Frough at a co-op class held in the Richland Community Center. Today we had a field trip to Country Mercantile. Below are pictures of activities we were involved in (not necessarily comprehensive nor in order). The hay pyramid and the hay maze were a lot of fun.

We also went to the petting zoo, where we saw a moose, cows, goats, sheep, pigs and rabbits.

Here are some more random pictures taken by mommy during the day.

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Charbonneau Park

Charbonneau Park was built by US Army Corps of Engineers on the Snake River. More precisely, next to Lake Sacajawea, which was formed behind the Ice Harbor Lock and Dam. It is not very close, but not very far either – we drove just a little bit more than 30 minutes right after I woke up from my nap. We got into the lake, then we spent the rest of the day playing with sand: I helped daddy build the biggest sand castle that Lake Sacajawea has ever seen. We got home pretty late and I went to bed more than one hour later than usual.

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