Palm canyons, rattlesnakes, and jazz music: a quick trip to the palm desert

columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationThanks to my travel hacker husband, who scored us 4 free plane tickets and a free rental car (through the southwest rewards credit card – awesome!), we got to head someplace warm in March: The Palm Desert in California.  And it was glorious!

It required traveling pretty late, and so the littles were pretty cranked out by the time we got to our layover in Vegas.  I carried our bags through the Vegas airport with a screamer clawing at my legs, trying to scramble up.  I’m talking SCREAMING.  That way that only 3-year-olds can scream.  I did the mama walk-of-shame (well, really, walk of pride if you ask me) past all those dreamers throwing their coins in the slot machines for one last hope of striking it rich.  THEY even looked up.  It was pretty intense.  And so, when we finally could take a rest, and I happened to glance at the sign we were sitting by, I literally laughed so hard I cried.  Not sure this is what they had in mind when they came up with the “What happens here, stays here” slogan.  But.  Yeah.  Pretty fitting.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Carried the kids from the car into our “bacation home,” as the littlest calls it, very late at night.  Woke up the next morning to sunshine on the mountains and a great big cup o coffee.  columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation One awesome thing about Tuscany Manor is it’s full of fruit trees, and guests are welcome to eat whatever they pick off the trees.  My kids LOVED the clementines.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationWAY better mood the next morning for this one:) columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationSo, the reason we headed to the desert was to fulfill a dream of mine – to see the desert in bloom.  I expected something like this or this or even this.  Instead, we saw this:sarah gee-0956Not quite what I was dreaming of, but pretty awesome nonetheless.  It had been a bad year for blooms weather-wise, and you really have to time it just right and be in exactly the right place to see the desert-sweeping blooms.  Joshua Tree was amazing, though, and we were NOT disappointed in the least!  My wild ones LOVED scrambling on all the big boulders. We really only went on one hike all together – through Hidden Valley.  It’s only a mile, but we had many a stop for lizard-viewing, rock scrambling, and rocks-in-the-shoe issues.  We all loved it!columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationcolumbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Hey, look!  A bloom!columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Then the fates shone upon us, and the kids fell asleep in the car.  Since the park is pretty big, we drove on through.  I dropped Harry off for a quick hike of his own, and I got a quick one in too, while the kids napped.  We ended with the Ocotillo Patch, which was totally in bloom (it blooms like 5 or 6 times a year).  columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation And, now they’re awake:)  And singing “Frozen” songs at the top of their lungs (this happened a lot on this trip).columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Not sure if she’s gonna float.  Probably needs a couple more noodles.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation That tiny little pink thing in the next picture is my daughter.  Indian Canyon was like going back to dinosaur times.  The Land of the Lost intro music kept playing in my head.  columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation I freaking LOVE this next picture.  Wild one.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Sometimes I feel like this girl just has sacred things inside of her.  She started smearing dirt all over herself.  But it’s not just that she does it, it’s the way she does it – like it’s some ceremony.  I love it.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Next day was supposed to be the warmest, so we made a day trip to the coast – Crystal Cove State Park.  Awesome tidepools!columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation “Um, but there’s dirt on my hands.  There is DIRT on my HANDS!”columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Angry with me…columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Aaaaaandddd… not angry with me.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationWe have this thing about running after birds.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation  Accessorizing…columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation And then, a lifelong dream was fulfilled.  Whenever we see birds in the wild, this one is always asking me, “Can I hold that bird on my finger?”  Um, no.  But we happened to go to the Living Desert, on the suggestion of friends.  And they happened to have a temporary feed-a-bird-with-a-stick-with-seeds exhibit.  Giggles galore:)columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Not quite the same experience for this one.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Luckily, the Living Desert also had rattlesnakes.  The kids were pretty disappointed about not seeing a rattler in the wild (I was pretty damn relieved).  sarah gee-1807columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation All the carousel animals were from the desert – cool!columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation  And, there she is – walking along doing her sacred things again.  She was singing softly and throwing sand in the wind.columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationcolumbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation Last night here, so we dressed up and went OUT to dinner!  Went to Woody’s Burgers, which we knew had a jazz band playing that night.  Lots of dancing in our seats and in a crowded corner.  columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacation columbus ohio photographer, palm springs vacationKiller trip to the Palm Desert!!!  Thanks for checking this out!

 

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18 Comments

  1. Aww, looks like a lovely family vacation. Your kids just cuter and you get a real sense of their personalities. Great stuff 🙂

  2. OMG! FREE tickets! That’s so awesome! I love all the pictures and your kids are just too adorable!

  3. This is GREAT! What a way to remember such a fun trip and the singing to Frozen picture was perfect!!!

  4. So sweet, and such great memories captured!

  5. Looks like a fun family trip!

  6. These are perfect!

  7. Beautiful images! The scenery is gorgeous.

  8. Oh my goodness! What a fun trip!! I wanted to comment on every single thing I loved about the photos and captions, but that would take forever lol. So I’ll sum it up: you’re pretty funny 😀 Your kids are adorable, and kudos to hubby for winning this trip!

  9. That looks like so much fun! I need a road trip

  10. What a great selection of environments, who says you can’t mix pleasure and work!

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