A day with Michelle Gardella and crew.

We first found each other a little over a year ago when they made the life changing decision to buy an airstream and take their family on the road. Our paths nearly crossed last winter in the southwest before they decided to plant new roots in Austin, Texas. We are really glad that we finally got to meet here in Connecticut as they are in the final stages of pulling up their old ones.

We can not thank Michelle enough for these AMAZING photos of the kids. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! And for the fabulous day we spent together. Hope our paths cross real soon.

You check out more photos of the kids here.

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Lone Rock Beach and Upper Antelope Canyon.

We made a mad dash for Page, Arizona after we left Wupatki National Monument because we knew that we would want to catch Horseshoe Bend at dusk. The last time we were there, we were running late as well and ended up catching it at just the right light. Admittedly, this is a place that is hard to get a good photo of. Almost every moment of the day will cast shadows in some part of the canyon and getting enough light to show it at dusk is always a challenge.

Ava and I made a dash to the edge of Horseshoe Bend just after sunset.

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National Monuments Galore to Flagstaff, Arizona

When we left Phoenix, we knew that we wanted to make our way eventually to Page, Arizona. We were just there a couple of months ago on our way to California from Albuquerque but since Josh and Jessa had never been, we didn’t mind one bit going back again. Plus, we wanted to hit up all of those National Monuments that were closed when we drove through last time.

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Chiricahua Mountains and Phoenix, Arizona.

Leaving Tombstone meant that we were once again looking for a place to stay for a few days. I have to visit the office in Santa Barbara in a few days so we decided that eventually heading over the Phoenix was the way to go since they have direct flights. But we were not so eager to go to a big city yet. We first made a few stops along the eastern part of the state.

The road up to Chiricahua National Monument is not travel trailer friendly. So just inside the gates of the park, we got an okay from the ranger to detach the #airstream and head on in with just the van. While we spent a few hours exploring, the Mish sat

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Joshua Tree National Park, California.

After getting back from the Balloon Fiesta in October, we planned to spend most of our time in the southwestern part of the country until Summer 2014 comes around. As much as we love traveling the rest of the country, there is so much to see here that we have neglected because of its proximity. We are going to do a much better job exploring around these western states.

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