What Not to Miss in New Mexico

I’ve been vacationing in New Mexico over the past few weeks, specifically in the Albuquerque area. Here are five places–restaurants, national parks, and more–that I will be coming back to next year!

1. The Petroglyphs National Monument.My personal favorite was the Three

An antelope in a tutu?

Sisters area, because I got to climb right up the side of a volcano (extinct of course!). But there are, of course, more handicap accessible areas to this park. Almost everywhere there are petroglyphs carved on the lava rock–hence the name–which are truly fascinating. Some things lead you to wonder what the artists was thinking when he carved what he carved, and others will simply leave you astounded that a bored shepherd could be so talented.

2. Blake’s Lotaburger. Okay, so they might have these in other places throughout the country, but not where I’m from. The reason to go in New Mexico, is that you can get the burger with green chile (which you can get on just about anything in New Mexico, really). The burgers are excellent, the fries are perfect. It won’t even cost you an arm and a leg to eat there–burgers are around 3 or 4 dollars.

3. El Morro National Monument. Now, this one is not at all handicap accessible. I don’t know why they even bothered to put in a handicap entrance, because a person who wasn’t 100% mobile would have a hard time getting around. Once you get to the top of the box canyon, you have to climb over rocks on a thin trail where any great deviation would end in a plummet to your death. The map marks it as “slightly strenuous” but beware! (Fortunately, I love these kinds of hikes.) Nevertheless, the view was astounding, with a gorgeous forest on the end you come in on, and vivid mesa and desert scenery just around the bend. definitely a park for the more daring hiker, but still be cautious: watch the weather reports and make sure you’re not going to be there on a rainy day.

El Morro encompassing me…I couldn’t quite capture it in a single shot, or even a panorama.

4. The Sandia Mountains. The drive up is fun because your ears pop every few minutes, but also a little scary because some places lack a guard rail. The trail is paved up to a point, with the option of walking along the (unpaved) edge of the cliff or staying as far away from it as you possibly can. There are forests and crooked trees, and a never-ending supply of panorama material. Once you get high enough, you can see out beyond the city to where there is untouched desert, to where the mountains fade into the sky in the distance, and you feel so small. There’s also a hummingbird feeder with photogenic hummingbirds who will let you get as close as you want, and I spent a lot of time there. This place is very prone to violent storms, and this year we were forced to go back to the gift shop when clouds formed overhead–and none-to-soon, either, because it hailed for at least 15 minutes. But they can still expect me back!

5.The Albuquerque Botanical Garden and Aquarium.Sounds sort of childish,

From a movie I took

but I got great shots of flowers, not to mention I had a good time. There are flowers and butterflies and dragonflies, and an entire garden dedicated to children (I went there when I was little and it was brand-new, had a blast). The aquarium has all kinds of fish and even eels, which I haven’t seen often, and the tank of moon jellies is eerily beautiful. The zoo, another part of the ABQ Biopark, is a miss (although I was spoiled with a world-class zoo when I grew up, so my standards are pretty high).

6. Sadie’s. I know I said 5 and that this is under the “Top Five Lists” category, but this is another place you gotta go. The Mexican food here is generous and delicious, with cheese and refried beans enough to share. For kids? The quesadilla appetizer, split between two or three of them. Adults? Get anything you want, it’s all great (the only thing I would advise against would be the taquitos)! Served with free chips and salsa as an appetizer (naturally, this is New Mexico we’re talking about!) and sopapillas with honey for dessert.

They have a ton of airplanes and fighter jets, etc, outside of the museum.

7. The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History. Screw the number five. You gotta see this too. I’ve been here three times, and every time I’m a little scared and awed, even though it doesn’t change significantly from year to year. It’s cool to see bombs, photos, and artifacts, from the trinity site to the Cold War. Seeing the size of those bombs and thinking about what they are made to do gives you chills. You look at what the government said would save you in an atomic attack, and that will make you fear and question what you hear. It’s a great place to take kids who have an interest in science, or boys who have an interest in military vehicles.

I hope this helps anyone who is planning a trip to NM! And even if you’re not planning one, then why not?

Ciao for now,



Belamelark: Help Me Coin a New Word!

So before I begin, here’s the back story:

I decided to watch this movie:

for two reasons:

1. Kristen Stewart stars as Josh Hutcherson’s older sister.

2. Josh Hutcherson stars as Kristen Stewart’s little brother.

I’d seen it before when I was younger, but had forgotten the premise of the movie and decided to watch it again (see reasons stated above).

That might sound really stupid to anyone else but…no yeah it’s pretty much stupid.


My sister and I found it so amusing that Peeta (Mellark) was related to Bella in this movie that we created a new word, belamelark. It’s a term that means “something that is very amusing.” (Creative, I know.)

But before I continue, I’m going to interrupt myself by adding this in: what’s especially amusing about this movie is that this kid:

Is supposed to grow up into this guy:

I think Josh got the better end of that deal!

Anywho, so if you could please use that word wherever you can, and if you think you have to (which you’ll probably have to) link it back to this so that people know what the heck it means.

Let me know (in the comments) if you’re going to start using this word ever! (I would certainly appreciate it!) Also you can let me know if you think this is dumb (which I would not appreciate as much).

Well that’s all. Have a belamelark everyday! And remember to stay in school, kids!

Ciao for now,


PS It hurts inside to have belamelark underlined in red dashes as I write this, so please remember to use the word!

PPS It’s actually a pretty good movie. I recommend it!

ashamed: A Poem

he said we’d run the mile,

three laps around the school.

we thought it sounded like a blast,

they thought it sounded cruel.


our toes hit the pavement,

a chorus of slap slap,

and the space between us and them,

an ever-widening gap.


a group fell too far behind,

for us not to stare,

or laugh when we were on the grass,

and they were still right there.


in the end, they weren’t too far,

two minutes at the most,

but it was so hard to resist,

too hard not to boast.


and so we called them names like slow,

names that won’t wash away,

because even after we call them that,

after a matter of days,

years will go by without things going,

the things that we now say.


and now, however discontent,

their breathing’s slow and tamed,

the ones that we called lazy,

the ones who were ashamed.

Gaia Dream Avatar: A Fun Avatar Creator for Anyone

My (bored) friend and I were looking for online anime avatar makers one day, when we came across this one. Located at www.tektek.org/dream/, it’s a fun way to make nearly endless avatars. They have new stuff all the time. And the best part, it’s free, and it doesn’t even peer pressure you into getting an account or paying someone.

I made this guy:

He looks so amazingly cool that I’ve named him Cruz. Perfect.

There’s this screen that says, “Are you sure you want to finish?” Makes it sound real final. But you can always go back.

I decided to do just that, and I gave him somewhere to live…

Naturally, he had to be living somewhere where he can have a brawl on occasion…but those are only for show. When two guys he doesn’t know are fighting he’ll break it up. Cruz is one of those antihero types.

Then I went back and decided to look at what other backgrounds there are to offer. I found these really cool photograph ones. There’s the clean one:

As anyone with eyes could tell you, he looks pretty coolio.

And then there’s the vintage (Instagram) one:

This is definitely not awkward me all ready for a date with Cruz:

Definitely not.

Ciao for now,


PS I’m not being paid for this, I just really love it and think more people should know about it!

PPS Warning: That site is very addicting!

chamber: A Poem

give me your agony i love it here

these stone hard cold walls

i scream into them and

they scream back my very same


so i cry myself to sleep

again like every night or morning


give me your loneliness i love it here

it is too dark for fog but to dense for air

too heavy for my lungs

too hot for my clothes

i shiver in a pool of my own honesty

but the truth cannot end my passion


give me what you got i love it here

unfathomable darkness my eyes

will not


endless beyond silence my ears

will not

hear it

my imagination can conquer

all things inevitable

i am sure to be still rosy and round

yet why are my wrists in braille


they cannot penetrate

my superior abilities

i lay in my adobe fortress

where no man would put a battering ram

it is impossible to knock down


with a whip or a brand


i know what you want but i love it here

dreams: A Poem

tell me a story before i rise

a whisper before i open my eyes

the day is full of nothing but lies

the night’s the only time i feel wise


can i feel safe in your fist?

bending physics with your wrist?

nightmares my one enemy?

night you make good company


secret me the whisper of the shadows

sing me a lullaby before I wake

sun and horizon, my only foes

my dreaming will give what lightime will take


breathing deep or counting sheep

all to learn while i’m asleep

so give me a prophecy

night you make good company


so i’ll float upon a dream

night and i work as a team

for here in dark, not even a spark

will rouse me from the moon’s scheme