The next day we packed up for a hike. We drove up toward the Taos Ski Valley and did the Italiano hike. Stacey picked this one and it was wonderful! We crossed the creek over and over again and everything was so lush and cool. I even found some wild strawberries to pick and enjoy. I LOVED this hike and the weather that accompanied it. We went as far as our smallest could go and then turned around. We continued to drive up the mountain to the ski valley where we had a wonderful lunch at the Stray Dog which I adore. I had their wonderful frito pie and TWO Norteno margaritas which are the best margaritas in the world and which also knocked me on my rear end. I slept all the way down the mountain. I also took a nap when we got back to the house while the kids watched a movie and Michael and Rob worked. The Gardners took a trip to see family in Santa Fe. That evening, Cheris made a yummy dinner of coconut chickpea kale soup with crusty bread. Mmmmmmm. Then we took the kids on a walk to see the prairie dogs who failed to show up for their performance. It was still a nice evening stroll.
Wednesday morning we packed a picnic and planned to go up the ski lift and have a mountaintop picnic. When we got up to the ski valley, we realized that the ski lift wasn't running. We chatted with the information people and they sent us up higher to the Williams Lake Hike and gave us good advice about how to get to the parades for the fourth of July. Then we let the kids play on the new playground at the base of the ski lift for a while. We drove up past the ski valley about two miles to the entrance of Williams Lake. We had a lovely picnic by a stream and then hiked just a little ways up. After that we went back to the amazing waterfall at the base of the hike and hiked up to the top of the waterfall and up behind it. We found a cool little fort up there and I think this was my favorite of all our hikes. It was just too cool.
We drove down the mountain and went straight to the new Taos Mesa Brewing Company. This is a neat brewery over by the earthships built into an old airport hanger. It had a stage where we heard some wonderful blues and everyone said the beers were very good. It had a large fenced in gravel area with frisbee golf and bean bag toss. The food was really, really good and beats KTAOS, but KTAOS remains my favorite. It was neat, because we could see a huge rainstorm come down from the mountain and hit Taos, but it somehow skipped over the brewery. when we got home that evening we could see it had hailed at the house, but we had received nary a drop.
That evening we bathed all the kids and then let them flop on the sheep rug on the floor of the living room and watch so you think you can dance. It was good times.