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?
I had so many plans for this week. Oh well. Life doesn’t always work out as planned.
Here’s what I was excited to do this week before Covid hit:
It is finally be warm enough to get back into the pool. I made lap swimming reservations at the YMCA for this week after it was too cold to swim for months.
I was going to a driving range by myself or with a friend.
I wanted to hike the trails across the street because wildflowers are in bloom.
I got a call from the City of Scottsdale that I got bumped off the waiting list of three months for pickleball lessons today. They had a coveted spot for me.
I was going to a Casino Night fundraiser for the Dream Center which is a residential facility for trafficked girls and boys. I wrote about it HERE.
My husband and I would resume our daily walks morning and night.
I realize it’s not the end of the world that my plans changed. I’m content to sit in the backyard for a few minutes and enjoy the warm sun. Next week, I may feel stronger and be able to enjoy a few of the activities on my list, if not all of them. Notice most of my activities had to do with good weather, sunshine and moving outside?
What are you excited to do because Spring is in the air?
That’s me standing next to a giant Saguaro that must be several hundred years old — at least.
Sunday morning we woke without plans except to go for a walk. I suggested going out on the hiking trails at the preserve across the street. It’s been a while since we’ve been out there. That’s because the weather has been literally freezing cold with strong winds.
It was a perfect temperature Sunday, around 60 degrees with clouds in the sky to block our strong sun. I can’t express my joy at getting out of the house, being in the middle of nature. We’ll try to get out on the trails twice a week until it’s too hot and snakes come out.
Here are photos from Sunday’s hike:
A view of a saguaro framed by two distant mountains. Staghorn cactus in the foreground.
I couldn’t believe how green it was. Grass was everywhere thanks to our rainy days.
I think this is a Soaptree Yucca.
The McDowell Sonoran Preserve has signs everywhere so you can’t get lost. They are numbered so if you need help, you can call and tell someone what number sign you’re near.
I wanted a picture of my husband. This was all he agreed to.
We spotted two Harris Hawks checking us out at the top of two Saguaros near the end of our hike.
The trailhead starts and ends near Power Line Trail. Notice the Harris Hawks followed us back to the end of the trail.
When I got home, I stood in our freezing cold pool for as long as I could, then elevated my legs on the gravity recliner and watched the birds in our backyard.
P.S. I changed my avatar photo. My old one was at least nine years old when I started this blog. I felt it was time to update it. The new photo is from last Christmas.
We had many beautiful walks this weekend. Mainly because it warmed up. I was able to walk without being bundled up in a ski parka and wool cap. I wore a sweatshirt instead.
My dishwasher quit a week ago Friday right before guests came over for appetizers. Saturday we had friends over for Oxtail soup complete with salad, vegetables and a rice dish. That meant a ton of dishes. Lucky me, we have dishwasher in our casita. I had to traipse back and forth with dishes on a tray for the past week.
Finally, this past Friday (a week after it broke down) the repairman came. He did diagnostics and said it would cost $1,000 to fix the dishwasher. I looked at the paperwork the prior owners left us. The dishwasher is around nine years old. Easy decision.
We went shopping Saturday for a new dishwasher. The one I wanted could be delivered in 25 weeks! I thought we were over supply chain issues. I’m not schlepping dishes to and from the casita for half a year. I looked at other brands and they had one dishwasher in stock! Imagine that! I feel like we lucked out.
Sunday I went with a girlfriend to a driving range to hit balls for the first time in years. I couldn’t believe how nervous and shaky I was. Eventually I settled down and hit a few good shots. We chipped and putted. It felt marvelous to be outside having fun on a bright sunny day. My new golf friend also hasn’t golfed for years and we seem to be a good match as far as our golfing skills go.
Sunday morning I got this video of Canadian geese:
What was I up to in the New Year of 2022? One of the things I like about blogging is being able to look back on what I was doing, thinking and feeling.
A year ago to the date, I was returning home from Berkeley after taking care of my son post surgery.
AND my husband wasn’t answering the phone. I was worried about him. It turned out he was sick in bed with COVID. As sick as I have ever known him to be.
I took a Lyft home from the airport in Phoenix. The Lyft driver was not happy when he learned how far away I lived. I didn’t mean to be an inconvenience, you’d think drivers would want to pick up a long ride. But I think we are so far out, there’s not much of a chance for the driver to pick up any rides on the way back to Phoenix. Plus, he was going to be late picking his wife up after her work. I wondered why he accepted my ride in the first place?
In any case, I moved into our Casita and kept my husband isolated in our Master bedroom. (I heard master isn’t PC to use, but I really don’t care.)
I cooked him homemade chicken soup with onions, garlic and carrots. I carted it to the front porch and then called him to let him know food was waiting for him. This went on for several days.
When he was finally better, we went exploring and hiked the Sears-Kay Ruins. Then we went to hang out with friends who invited us over to watch football.
What were you up to a year ago? Do you find yourself doing many of the same things year after year?
This was Olive, checking out the Mulies from the bar in our living room.
The weather has definitely changed. Last week we topped 90 degrees every day. Saturday was a huge rainstorm with wind, thunder and lightening. Then Sunday morning the temperatures were in the 60s and the high was 70. What a wonderful change.
My husband and I hit the hiking trails. It’s been months since we’ve hiked because of the heat.
It feels so good to be out in nature. It’s good for my soul.
Here’s are some of the sights:
Have a great week! What exciting fun things did you encounter over the weekend?
We celebrated our 37th anniversary with a mountain hike. A storm came through the night before with thunder, lightening and rain, and the heat wave broke. Plus, my husband took time off work so we could hike the Dawn Trail in the morning.
I’m so thankful we got to go on the mountain trails. It had been too hot in the afternoons to attempt it.
Discover this 5.8-km out-and-back trail near Park City, Utah. Generally considered an easy route, it takes an average of 1 h 54 min to complete. This is a very popular area for birding, hiking, and trail running, so you’ll likely encounter other people while exploring. The best times to visit this trail are April through October. Dogs are welcome, but must be on a leash.
Review from hiker: I wouldn’t rate this trail as easy simply because if you start near the map at the bottom that’s next to the ski lift, it is all uphill and it gets pretty steep at some points. It’s mostly switchbacks up to the top, but it is a pretty strenuous slope, especially for beginners. But, It was beautiful and had a gorgeous view of the valley.