We had a great time with our friends Tom and Wendy Kerr and their family hiking to Bumpass Hell in Lassen Volcanic National Park. The above pic is just an example of the amazing views at about 8000 ft. The hike was at that level, so the kids and parents were a bit short of breath on this hike. But, it was an easy hike and the reward of seeing the volcanic vents and time together made for a great day. And, I ate too much at BBQ later at the Kerr’s home. Yummie… The video below is a slide show of some pics and some video clips of the bubbling mud pools.
This is a big-portion-pickup-truck driving place to eat and it is sooo Redding. I like it. No flavored teas or girlie salads. (corner of Cypress and Bechelli in Redding)
Brandy Creek Falls is a mere 1.5 mile hike…well, all uphill, of course. Me and the family drove the dirt road to yet another falls in the Whiskeytown recreational area. (Whiskeytown lake is about 15 minutes from Redding). “Are we there yet” and “boy, my legs are tired dad” all melted when we finally reached the falls. A memory for us all! Yes, my son fell in one of the creek pools and after drinking from the creek, my daughter said, “dad, this is the best tasting water I have ever had!” The alligator lizard was neat as well as the beautiful landscapes.
The Sundial Bridge at night is cool! These are my two kids (Emilie, left and Ethan right) and my nephew Anthony is the tall one in the back. There were hundreds of people at the bridge. This bridge is really a melting pot of Redding. I like it. Not just the incredible design of the bridge, but how there is a place like it to meet people and hang out. The glow of the bridge on the water is cool. The illuminated pathway on the deck of the bridge speaks of the hopes that Redding will become more than it is today.
Crystal Creek Falls is a 50 foot waterfall off CA Highway 299, in the Whiskeytown Lake area. Even though we are now in August when the snow melt is waning, the falls are spectacular. I cannot wait to return either for the fun swim-holes or picnic opportunities. There are two reasons why we picked this place: it was on the list of "easy" hikes, and it was only a few minutes out of Redding. The picture, from left to right, is my daughter Emilie, Eileen my mother-in-law, and Anthony my nephew. What a refreshing morning we had together! Yes, the water is cold. After all, it is melted snow. A return in late spring makes this place thunderous, from what I am told. I can’t wait. Of course, there are many falls yet to check out within an hour of Redding.
NEW PHOTO ALBUM HERE
A week ago we had a terrific outside worship service, BBQ and concert event. The ribs were savory, provided by San Francisco Deli here in Redding and the music was locally grown as well! Two of the groups that were onstage were Constancy and Blameless Child. Blameless Child is a trio–sisters on guitars and brother on drums. They all sing and are a lot of fun. Teenagers all, they are not just about their music but suport a foundation for Machado Josheph Disease. These young women and young man did some 50s music covers, but I really like their originals. Their dedication is paying off and I see big things in the future for these guys. They frequently lead music and worship in our Focal Point High School youth group. Check out their site link: http://www.blamelesschild.com Constancy is an indie-folk group of young adults that impressed me with the depth of songwriting and inspiring presentation. The instrumentation gelled nicely. I especially liked the retro Fender Rhodes and tasteful fiddle and mandolin touches. It was clear they could connect with the crowd very well. Some of the members of the group grew up in our church, like Blameless Child (who are "almost" grown up). Constancy’s members have been involved with our young adult worship service called The Well (here is a photo album of The Well.) …
Nello’s (3055 Bechilli Lane) is an Italian restaurant that has been in Redding for a while. I went there for the first time with my wife for our 17th anniversary–actually a date that included dinner and a movie. We saw Click, which was hilarious and poignant. Anyway, I recommend this place as it was the best service we have yet had here in town and the food was good–especially the Salmon and Capers.
In Redding, California you can find hot real estate buys, hot air balloon rides, hot worship leader dudes like me and of course just plain hot! A couple years ago, my town had the honor of being the "hottest on earth". It was surreal seeing the weather in Bagdad and Death Valley lower than your hometown! Today we reached 116. Well, there was a bank sign that said 120!! Yes, Redding is famously hot. I did not believe that when I moved here, since my first summer living in Texas had a headline that read "100 Days Over the Century Mark". That Texas experience quite tamed a San Jose, California boy like me. Even though it is indeed a dry heat here as opposed to my Texas days, it really does not matter much when you get over 105. By the way, our choice for a family movie tonight…Eight Below.
Alright, I just had one of the greatest times at a movie in memory. I took the family to see "Cars" by Disney/Pixar last night and it was a winner! The graphics and creativity was amazing. The more you looked the more cleverness you would see in each shot–a world that is truly a world of cars. Besides that, the story line and characters were touching and there was a good heroic quality. That is frowned upon often in many films today, but the masses and me truly love it when there is a hero. Redemption still moves people, like it or not. I like it. The other fun thing about this was watching my kids, especially my son, watch this flick. They were beaming and drawn into the story. We also went to a new cinema in our area. Prime Cinemas 11 is located at the Anderson outlets, just a few minutes south of Redding. To top off the night, there was a coupon for the kids. For a mere $2 I got each kid a soda, popcorn and candy! Can’t beat it. What did you think of "Cars"?