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Sunday, June 8, 2014

Seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland

February 16-20 we took a trip with our friends Michelle, Glenn and their daughter Emme (who is in Ariana's class). We traveled to Iceland. My main mission was to see the Northern Lights, and it happened!! It was glorious and magical! It's hard to explain and even photos don't do it justice, but it was beautiful and I tucked those special memories away in my heart. Here is a rundown of our trip.

Judah on his first flight! Iceland Air!

We stayed at the Northern Lights Inn in Grindavik. It was pretty far away from the main city of Reykjavik. And by pretty far I mean we had to take a shuttle 5 mins to the Blue Lagoon, and then a 45 minute bus ride into the city. It was great being away from the city lights though. Perfect for viewing the Northern Lights! We were very lucky and saw the Aurora Borealis every night that we were there!

 The Northern Lights over our hotel.

Above: A rainbow of colors!
Below: My favorite shot of the Aurora Borealis!

Below: The Imagine Peace (tribute to John Lennon shining up through the clouds and into the Aurora Borealis. 

 One of the days we took a trip to Rejavik and took a boat ride out to go whale watching (didn't happen). It was SOOO cold that they gave us special waterproof coveralls to wear to protect us from the wind and any spray. 

Judah was not a fan of the cold winds on the boat. He stayed in the cabin the whole time.

The best known food in Iceland is Baejarins Beztu Pylsur, a hotdog stand. Of course we had to try them. I thought they were okay.

Judah all bundled up in the Ergo and me with my faux fur hat on.

Ariana and Emme learning the basics of chess in our hotel thanks to the help of the Dads.

It was a long day of sight seeing, Judah passed out on the couch by the fire in the lounge in our hotel.

Ponies and mountains.

We went to see the Geyser in Iceland.

We also went to the divide between the 2 tectonic plates, American and European (above), and the Gullfoss waterfall (below).

We spent an hour or so at the Blue Lagoon on our last day. This geothermal spa was only a short drive from our hotel. It is a manmade lagoon with naturally heated water 98–102 °F that flow from a lava flow nearby. It's warm water is rich in minerals such as silica and sulphur and it's supposed to be very good for your skin. Unfortunaly the day we went the winds were too strong and even though the water was warm your face was freezing in the whipping winds. Michelle came away with icicles in her hair!

Michelle found a great craft for the girls to make Northern Lights pictures using black construction paper and chalk!

Our hotel was surrounded by lava fields. It took hundreds of years for anything to grow there because of the volcanic rock that was everywhere. I found a heart shaped bit of moss growing at my feet. Ariana's beloved "hole bunny" came too!

It was a very fun trip with our friends. Here is all of us at the last dinner of our trip.

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