Monday, May 17, 2010

Having a blast ie.frugal sightseeing

We are really having a fabulous time here in Carlsbad. Life is full of inhalations and exhalations. While we were in Austin after my litle accident it seemed like there was a lot of inhalation....reading inner work books, knitting, planning, arguing, readjusting to limited finances. There wasn't a lot of play or just enjoying ourselves. Now that we are here the exhalation has finally happened. I am reminded that this is the reason we decided to go on the road...the national parks. It is hard to believe that it has taken this long from Florida to see a worthy national park. This is part of why I've been in a bit of a funk, feeling stagnant, and like we weren't really doing much of anything. It has been the journey to get out west. The west is and has always been our destination and now we are here.

Let me tell you why national parks are so great. First of all, you just can't beat the price. The kids were free at Carlsbad Caverns so I think we got in for around ten bucks. Ellery's souvenir was his free junior ranger badge and Willow got a pressed coin for around 50 cents. I did get my passport for $10 which Riki already had but once you buy that you can get it stamped at each national park for free and a pretty sticker for each location for around $1. Now those are some cheap souvenirs! I' m digging it.

And then there is the value of enjoying the raw beauty of nature as it's meant to be. There is a lot to teach our children about respecting the planet in taking them to places like this vs. an amusement park or some other consumer focused tourist trap. We went to the Living Desert Zoo and Botanical Gardens this morning....another $13 for all four of us to get in. I come from where it costs at least $30-40 for a family of four to go to a zoo....and this one was so much more beautiful. Although many animals were sleeping to our disappointment the botanical gardens were just beautiful. We were able to see all of the native species to the chihuahuan desert. The prickly pear cactus with its yellow blooms are my favorite. I enjoyed reading about the medicinal values of the various cacti and plants. It is amazing that we go to a store now to buy medicines when plants which can heal us are everywhere!

Riki will be posting a last round of pictures tonight. We did see an awesome rv park he had mentioned right at the entrance of the park but that was out of our budget. We are spending our last night at a passport america park and then we are off to Brantley State Park a bit further north for about a we won't have internet there. After that Roswell, and then we are predicting a longer stay in Albuquerque where we can get mail and packages again (hint hint to those who have packages to send).

For now, I'm enjoying our little indoor cactus we bought for $5 and fantasizing about xeriscaping with blooming cacti in a front yard.


Tammy said...

I am loving reading about your travels...both the highs and lows. :)

Ima said...

You frugal little hippie ;-) Cheap and free are our besties!

TLGFLIZ said...

hey.. so glad your having so much fun finally.. we have certainly found that some of the best things to do are free.. sounds like the kids are really having a blast.. hopefully you will see a tumbleweed soon. boy that was a hit with me.. its the little things ya know. haha..keep us posted. we are enjoying the adventure with ya... love mom

American Daze said...

Glad you guys are having a blast....Nature is far better! Our summer vacations were always seeking out some freebies!!..

Thanks for sharing

Forest-Dweller said...

We have a National Park on our list for this year. And usually stay at State Parks when we can. They seem to be way cheaper than most. Though we did just come from Disney Fort Wilderness. Anything is cheaper than that...but boy was it nice. One thing I will miss when we Camp are my gardens. But I have been putting together container beds so my heart wont yearn too much.

Little House On Wheels said...

Ah yes, been to FW...harder to get a ressie than anything else.

I really miss our veggie garden from last year, even though it was containers. You don't even have room for that in an rv and boy do I hate paying for organic veggies now.