A page from my parents wedding album given to me by my aunt who visited last week. Mom and Dad were 23!
A strange thing happened during my aunt’s visit. I glanced over at the sofa and Olive the cat was sitting next to my aunt licking her fingers! Now this is a first. Olive has never let a guest touch her or vice versa. Olive does sleep with my daughter, but that doesn’t count because she was my daughter’s cat until college took my daughter away.
My aunt and I did most of the things on my list and we found ourselves very compatible. We both got hungry at the same time, wanted quiet time in the afternoons to ourselves and went to bed early to read. Having a house guest doesn’t get much better than that!
It cooled down considerably, we lit the outdoor fireplace and cooked s’mores. We hiked in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. We went to the farmer’s market in Carefree and explored consignment stores in Cave Creek. We had some delicious lunches and dinners out, plus I cooked. We visited the Musical Instrument Museum and to my delight, they changed up a few exhibits so there were new things for me to enjoy.
You might wonder what would be exciting about visiting a museum of musical instruments.
From the MIM, here’s the Artists’s Gallery experience:
Celebrate music’s most influential artists.
In every time and place, there are musicians whose art deeply touches the lives of many. MIM’s Artist Gallery highlights these personalities with ever-changing exhibits that span sound, style, and era. Through generous partnerships, MIM features historic instruments owned, played, and loved by the musicians who have created a shared soundtrack to our lives for generations.
Nearly 40 displays showcase instruments and artifacts from some of the greatest musicians in the world. See and hear instruments played by icons such as Elvis Presley®, Tito Puente, the Carter Family and Johnny Cash, Roberta Flack, Glen Campbell, Joan Baez, Maroon 5, and many others.
The exhibits not only have the artists’s grammy awards, gold records, costumes and instruments, they have a large screen that plays selections of their songs on the headsets you wear. I think my favorite was “Pretty Woman” by Roy Orbison. On display is his hand written lyrics on a yellow legal pad. So not only do you get to sing along with Roy, you get to see how he wrote it, along with a photo of him and his pretty woman. There are many other galleries from all over the world. I haven’t touched the whole of MIM yet.
Here are a few photos from my aunt’s visit:
What is your idea of a perfect house guest? What do you like to do when entertaining company?
Two pages about Mom from my aunt’s scrapbook. My mom is on the right with her little sister, my aunt.
Today we pick up my aunt from the airport. She’s coming to visit us for the first time in Arizona. I have all sorts of fun things planned including visiting the MIM, the Musical Instrument Museum, where they have an Elvis exhibit (My aunt is a big Elvis fan.) We’ll have time to sit and talk. Also, go out to lunch, drive to the nearby lake and explore the tiny towns close to where I live. I’m also hoping it will be cool enough at night to light the outdoor fireplace and make s’mores. I’ve been all set since my kids visited a few weeks ago, but we had a heat wave!
Here they are years later in 2015 at our family reunion at our riverfront property in Robe, Washington. The fireplace in the background is what remains of our cabin that my parents built more than 65 years ago.
I am so looking forward to spending a few days with my aunt. It certainly helps that she’s my closest connection to Mom, who passed away from COVID this year. Also, that she is the kindest, sweetest person I know.
We lived in our Palm Springs home for 28 years. Both my kids were born at a hospital a few blocks away. We had a spectacular view of Mt. San Jacinto from our backyard. Only one time did we see snow reach the valley floor. It was during a swim meet our team hosted for Southern California Swimming. It was raining at the pool, while at the base of Mt. San Jacinto it snowed.
I’ve been whining about the cold weather in our new home by Carefree, AZ. Yes, it’s cold. Yes, we may get snow tonight but no avalanches! At least not here. I think I’ll stay away from Flagstaff though!
This was our view of Mt. San Jacinto from out backyard when we lived in Palm Springs. Mt. San Jacinto is home to the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.
Is anyone else getting hit by this current winter storm? What’s your weather like?
It rained all night, but today the rain has stopped and we have a gray cloudy day. We’re supposed to get more rain for the next two days. I hope we do. I find rain in the desert to be exciting and exhilerating.
But the gray cloudy day fits my mood and makes me want to curl up on the sofa with a book and not do anything but read.
I came home from my kids’ homes a week ago and now I feel myself going through bouts of grief and sadness. I guess that’s normal that I’m home without being busy taking care of my kids, walking Waffles, watching movies with them, grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning.
There isn’t that much to do here with my husband and me. We don’t eat much and the house, especially the kitchen stays surprisingly clean. I could start the taxes for 2022, but I’m not motivated today.
I think I’ll give into my blahs on this gray day and bury myself with a book. My mom would call a day like this a “mung” day. She would feel no guilt for staying in her nightgown and reading all day.
Does weather affect your mood? How do you feel on gray damp days?
Our front yard after a rainy night. The gravel is a weird color because the yard was sprayed for weeds.
Today my husband and I went looking for art, stone or something for two 16 by 16 inch spaces at the top of our bar. We found a few things including glass, natural stone and geodes. But we have different ideas of what will work. I want a bright contrasting color like orange or red. He wants green or blue. I like green and blue, but I feel those colors will get lost.
I have a feeling those spaces will remain empty.
It was very hot and humid outside. We walked around our little town of Carefree and then Cave Creek going in and out of consignment stores and art galleries. When I got back home I felt dizzy with vertigo. I have gotten vertigo twice in the past year. Hopefully this time it goes away quickly without having to see the doctor or going on prednisone like the last two times.
I’m sitting in bed typing this and finishing my neighborhood’s newsletter — hoping I don’t fall off!
Have you had vertigo? What has worked for you to get over it? Happy August First!
A neighbor told me about a couple hikes close to home. One is called Seven Springs and the other is a short one-mile jaunt called Sears Kay Ruins.
We left the house yesterday before football began to explore the area. I suggested the one-mile loop because we weren’t wearing hiking boots and what I read about Seven Springs — it was more challenging. Also a much longer hike.
On the hike, we learned about the Hohokom people who built a fortress on a hilltop with 40 homes in 1500 AD.
Sears Kay Ruin offers the visitor a glimpse of a distinctive lifestyle that existed long before Columbus. Self-guided 1-mile loop trail will take you through Hohokom Ruins. The site of Sears Kay Ruin was first occupied about 1500 AD. Point of Interest along the Great Western Trail. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The views were spectacular and I’m sorry the iphone doesn’t do them justice.
I’d like to go back again whenever we have an hour to do a short hike. I love that it’s a quick drive from our house. Next time, I’ll wear hiking boots because the trails is rocky and it’s a steep climb up the hill to the ruins. First, I want to find out more about the Hohokom.
We wondered why the Hohokom would live in such an isolated place on top of a hill. We read the signs and learned that the Seven Springs were close by and the hilltop gave the Hohokom protection from other tribes thanks to the fortress they built around it. Life sure looked hard having to hike down a steep cliff for water and food.
This was a historic site along Great Western Trail — something else I’ve never heard of before.
What have you discovered close to your home that you haven’t seen before?
We tried out the Tonto Bar and Grill for lunch yesterday. It was located on a golf course and this is the entrance. The shrimp tacos were pretty good. I’m on a quest to find the best fish and chips and shrimp tacos.
I see dozens of bunnies whenever I walk. I spotted tiny babies a few weeks ago, but they are quickly getting bigger. I like how the ears are translucent in the morning sun.
My Aunt gave me this beautiful painting of our cabin in Robe, Washington. It was painted by my grandmother. My parents built the cabin with their own two hands. It’s long gone. But we still own the land and have family reunions there. I had the painting framed and picked it up this week.
Here’s a photo of my cabin from the 1970s.
My husband and I spent Thursday evening at the lake again. We had a new pop-up tent that didn’t blow away.
When I went to the Farmer’s Market in Carefree, I ran across this slide in the park. If I were a kid, I’d be terrified of it. How about you?
I’m spending my afternoons reading in our casita. It’s a really good book called “Next Year in Havana” by Chanel Cleeton. Olive keeps me company by resting on the top of the sofa next to me.
How was your week? What were some of your highlights?