Wednesday, September 10, 2014

one day in paris

One rainy day in Paris.  We decided to have an extended layover in Paris.  When we arrived it was pouring but thankfully cleared up a few hours later and we enjoyed the afternoon and evening wandering the streets. 
The Eiffel Tower at Sunset
Sunrise on the River Seine

san sebastian

I had been to San Sebastian before, but only for a day while traveling south through Spain.  It was just as beautiful as I had remembered, but even better because I was with Lonnie and my parents.
We spent two nights in San Sebastian bar hoping with my missionary parents, looking for the best Tapas.

And just for entertainment.....
photos of when I was in San Sebastian 10 years before....

the kingdoms of arragon and navara

through the pyrenees

Visiting castles
 Exploring markets.
up into the mountains
climbing towers in romanesque churches

 singing "The Hills are Alive"....
winding cobblestone streets......

We also drove through Andora, just to check another country off the list, which ended up being basically a strip mall with a huge river running down the middle.  It probably was a beautiful valley before it was overrun with traffic and shopping centers.  

Costa Brava

Sunday, September 7, 2014

espana- barcelona

I've neglected our blog yet again......which sometimes means we are doing awesome things (sometimes it just means I have nothing interesting to write about).

Lonnie and I went to Spain.  We spent fifteen days traveling with my parents, who were in Barcelona serving a mission and one day in Paris on our way home.  We didn't take the kids with us, which was a new adventure in itself.  We enjoyed fabulous architecture,  beautiful scenery, delicious food, and great conversations.  It felt like a second honeymoon (only my parents were with us most of the time).

We are so grateful to Sasha and Jordan and all our friends who watched the kids while we were away.
Our first day in Barcelona with Elder and Hermana Allred, seriously jet lagged.  
View of Barcelona from above Park Guell, looking down on the Sagrada Familia
I can't figure out a way to put it all into one post so here is my first attempt....


Gaudi....You can't go to Barcelona without experiencing Gaudi.  I was prepared to be impressed but everything I saw far surpassed my expectations.

Casa Batllo
Our first day in Barcelona we walked around downtown with Elder and Hermana Allred, ate tapas, and enjoyed the architecture.
Lonnie and I toured the Casa Batllo.  The buildings striking but also highly functional in design.  Gaudi's use of a central courtyard down through the middle of the building brought natural light through out.  The light was amazing.

Sagrada Familia

Even with the cathedral packed full of people, La Sagrada Familia, was an amazingly peaceful and spiritual experience.  I have always thought of the outside of the building to be dark and depressing, but the experience inside was enlightening.  I have never been brought higher or felt the grander of God more through the architecture of any other building.  The entire trip would have been worth it just to sit and bathe in the deeply color saturated light of the Sagrada Familia.

Park Guell
We spent a large amount of our time in Barcelona walking around like this....
 Lonnie and I in front of the Palau de la Música Catalana, where we went to a Jazz concert.
 Outside of Barcelona at Montserrat a beautiful monastery located in amazing peeks.  Lonnie appreciated the geology....

 and I appreciated the church dedicated to women in the scriptures.
 We rode the funicular to the top of the peeks and went for a hike.
So much more to come.....