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Monthly Archives: December 2012

On our Way to Zion National Park for our Christmas Lunch

The entrance to Zion National Park

The entrance to Zion National Park

After a rewarding culinary experience at the Red Rock Grill at Zion Lodge on Thanksgiving Day, we decided to have our Christmas lunch at the same dining room.  In addition to the 5 stars buffet, this restaurant is surrounded by Zion canyon. Our campground is located at Hurricane which is about 25 miles South West of the Zion National Park.

The following pictures are taken from our truck on our way to Zion Park. Through these pictures I hope to give you a glimpse of the topography in Utah where we have been led to spend Christmas 2012. Some pictures may give you an idea of the geologic formations – you may see the different layers ranging from volcanic rocks to sandstones that form the hills and mountains of this desert. What is fascinating with these rock formations is that periods of stability suddenly change almost overnight in geological time. For example from desert sand to thick swampy mud deposits in a twinkling of an eye – it sort of puts “man-made global warming” into perspective.

One aspect of our traveling experience which I found most fascinating is the change in landscapes going from one State to the next.

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Inside Zion Park

Inside Zion Park

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Posted by on December 28, 2012 in Christmas 2012

 

Christmas Eve at In-N-Out Burger

The title does not sound good if you are a French reader but the evening was superb! The first time we heard about this chain of restaurants was on our way to LA. We had booked a tour to visit LA, Hollywood and Beverley Hills through our KOA campground back in October 2012 and as we passed Baldwin Park (part of LA County), our guide pointed out to us the sign where the first In-N-Out Burger was established. He went on bragging about the quality of the burgers and the fact that some people from New York come to eat in an In-N-Out Burger restaurant. I was not particularly impressed as fast food burger restaurants are generally the last resort I will choose even when very hungry!

Now that I have related to you how we came to know about In-N-Out Burgers chains, let’s go back to our Christmas Eve dinner.  On our way back home from the Church service, my dear husband casually asks what was for dinner – a comprehensible question at around 8:30pm. This is when an increasing guilt started to crawl into me. I had planned for 2 months in advance all the Christmas presents, I had planned and booked a few weeks ago our Christmas dinner at Zion national Park in a beautiful restaurant, I had planned to go to church but in the busyness of that day and the days preceding Christmas Eve (grading and more grading) I had totally deleted Christmas Eve dinner! If you know me you can imagine my level of guilt as our tradition is for me to prepare a many course meal with, at the end, 13 different desserts – each to remember Jesus and his disciples (my grand-parents tradition). As I was frenetically trying to find a close-by restaurant with the GPS, my husband was still heading home in the hope that I would cook something fast. I explained that this was not going to happen as I only have raw ingredients that require preparation.

As many of you know my husband is gracious and so he did a U-turn to take us to an Italian restaurant to the delight of Sabrina. Arriving at the restaurant we found out that they had closed early. As we were now going from one restaurant to the next we realized how difficult this task was getting. In between restaurants my family had already suggested that we should try a burger from the In-N-Out restaurant. This simply horrified me as for a French person the last food you want for Christmas Eve is a burger. I simply refused more than once up to reality caught up and I then accepted this option making the children promised not to tell anyone.

This is how we arrived at the In-N-Out in St. George, Utah on Christmas Eve.

My expectations were very low but I was happy to see how excited my family was. They all like burgers except me! I passed the door thinking that it was part of our fifth wheel experience and part of this experience is to be highly adaptable!

The inside was very neat, clean and I immediately liked it as there was a feel of America after the second World War – a more traditional America than now. Employees were friendly with an old fashioned uniform. The excitement of discovering this new place kept growing within us. I was surprised of the limited choice that this restaurant offered but at least it is easier to choose from when it is your first time. The service was excellent. Instead of calling our number the young man came to our table to serve us ( I had mentioned that it was our first time in an In-N-Out), he gave Philippe a chef hat as well as a Merry Christmas badge. At the end of our meal he came back to take away our trays – excellent service indeed for a low cost burger chain!.

Now what about the burgers and fries: they were both beyond what we all expected. The unanimous vote was that they were very very tasty. Philippe who never finished a burger wanted a second one – same for me. Jonathan found them much better than at the Red Robin. The fries are cooked in 100% trans-fat free, cholesterol free vegetable oil and the potatoes are peeled and diced at the location (we saw the machine that does the peeling and dicing!). They are then cooked with no salt. They give you little pack of salt with fries if you wish to have them salted. We were thankful and felt blessed as we enjoyed this dinner together. If you have an In-N-Out close by, you should try it. The nice part on Christmas Eve is that we were not the only one dressed with fancy clothes! That was a memorable experience – we may even make it our tradition!!

Sabrina, Philippe and our very kind waiter

Sabrina, Philippe and our very kind waiter

Please Mama no more pictures we are hungry!

Please Mama no more pictures we are hungry!

Philippe looking proud to wear his  Merry Christmas badge!

Philippe looking proud to wear his Merry Christmas badge!

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Posted by on December 26, 2012 in Christmas 2012

 

Meet our church family in Utah – Westside Baptist church in St. George, Utah

For this Christmas Eve service, some families chose to give a gift to Jesus by singing, reading a Scripture, playing an instrument or telling a story. Pastor Greg built our faith by comparing the certainty of Christ’s 1st coming with the certainty of Christ’s 2nd coming. This was a very special service.

Pastor Greg  - the encourager of the saints

Pastor Greg – the encourager of the saints

The Wright and Wilson families after the church service

The Wright and Wilson families after the church service

Pastor Greg, his lovely wife Merry Ellen and his kind son Gary

Pastor Greg, his lovely wife Merri Ellen and his son Gary

The Hargis family with Pastor Jeremy, his beautiful Canadian wife Mrs. Trena Hargis, and his mother Mrs. Hargis on the left hand side. Their 3 handsome boys are Dillon, Cody and Chase

The Hargis family with Pastor Jeremy, his beautiful Canadian wife Mrs. Trena Hargis, and his mother Mrs. Hargis on the left hand side. Their 3 handsome boys are Dillon, Cody and Chase

Pastor Greg and his family singing for the Lord

Pastor Greg and his family singing for the Lord

My dearest husband and beautiful daughter

My dearest husband and beautiful daughter

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in Christmas 2012

 
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Jonathan, Muriel, Sabrina and Philippe Wilson wish all their friends and their families a blessed Christmas 2012! Joyeux Noël!

Jonathan, Muriel, Sabrina and Philippe Wilson wish all their friends and their families a blessed Christmas 2012! Joyeux Noël!

Christmas 2012

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in Christmas 2012