Thursday, August 14, 2008

Our Fabulous Trip to Tahoe

We left for Lake Tahoe to meet the Danzes on Saturday after Eli finished his final. Emily was great on the flight, despite the 2 hour delay on the runway. In fact, she behaved herself like an angel the whole week even though her routine was "relaxed" due to the 2 hour time change!
On Sunday after mass at a church with a stunning view of the mountains, we met up with Eli's grandparents and the Raffs at the hotel restaurant's superb Champange Breakfast which sat on Lake Tahoe's shore. We had a relaxing day with some naps to make up for going to bed around 4am our time! Eli and I laid out on the beach to watch the sun set over the mountains and just thought that life couldn’t get any better than this.
The whole family went on a catamaran ride around the lake on Monday. The scenery was honestly breathtaking--the pine trees line the mountains leading down to the crystal clear water. They even served wine and cheese on the ride!

Early Tuesday morning we took a short 2 mile hike around Spooner Lake. It was interesting to see the different flowers and birds of the mountains. There were tons of my favorite trees--the tall and thin "quaking" aspen with leaves that look like they're glistening from afar. We spent the rest of the day at the pool.

Eli and his dad went for an intense bike ride up the mountains on Wednesday. They basically rode straight up the cliffs for an hour along about a two foot path—if they took one wrong move they could have fallen off! Eli says the pictures don’t give the views justice, but they look pretty amazing to me. Meanwhile, Sheri, Emily and I took a walk to see all the huge estates on Lakeshore and then I got a relaxing massage and Sheri babysat Emily. Later on that day we went rafting on the river that feeds into/out of? the lake with Joseph and Ken. For a Level 1 it was pretty scary with a little bit of white water, almost capsizing, getting stuck on a few boulders, etc. Very fun and quite a workout!

Thursday we left Emily with Chris to go play some putt-putt with the family at a really neat old-school course. Grandma and Grandpa were the best with rivals Eli and Joan. I of course was probably the worse, but hit my only hole in one on the last shot and won a free game! We took Emily to the beach afterwards for some good ol sand-eating and chasing the waves. For dinner Joan and Ken took us all to another great restaurant on the Lake—we celebrated Emily’s birthday there too.

Friday rolled around quicker than ever. We went to Thunderbird Lodge, once owned by millionaire George Whittell during the mid 1900s. Whittell also owned 25 miles of Lake Tahoe’s shore. His estate is very secluded and unique—with 600’ of tunnel below the main floor, there is also a dungeon, an indoor pool, an elephant’s house, a card-playing room with secret exit, a private beach, and an attached boathouse housing his $3 million yacht. We spent the rest of the day at the beach and had a nice dinner with Chris and Sheri. Then we hit the casinos and won back the money we’d lost the whole week plus more! What a great ending to a great trip!

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