Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Has Sprung!

Spring has definitely sprung here in Apache Junction, AZ! I've been here a while taking care of yearly medical stuff.

The weather has been just perfect!

Birds are looking around for mates and rapidly building nests.

And there are blooms everywhere! The ocotillo started blooming a couple weeks ago.

Most of the cactus are just beginning to bloom.

It always amazes me how something so beautiful can come out of something so prickly.

This looks like a saguaro, but it is just a close relative.

The saguaro don't usually bloom until early May, but a few of the early birds have buds already.

And I actually found one blooming in March! It must just want to get its picture taken...

We've also gone out several times to see our favorite singing duo, Brant and Kerry, both at Filly's and Superstition Skies. Here Kerry is doing his Roy Orbison impression.

One evening we had a blogger get-together at Superstition Skies. It was great fun, although a tad too loud to talk. Jim and Sandie are on the left, with Retired Rod and Jim of Jimbo's Journeys next to Phil.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

More Fun in Pennsylvania

We had time for one more birthday party, across the street at the home of the Worlds-Best-Neighbors, Steve and Nancy.

And before I left, I took photos of all the pictures in my baby book. If I ever settle down, I'll take the book, but in the meantime, this will do. Here I'm helping my father build an outdoor fireplace in our backyard.

And here he's measuring me on my 3rd birthday.

And here I am with Baby Barbie on her 1st birthday. It sure is nice to come from a family of photographers!

Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? He really liked my smart phone.

The weather was pretty good until the day I was scheduled to leave. Then I woke up to SNOW!

But only a little bit, and the Harrisburg airport was prepared.

While the plane was taxiing for takeoff, I got a good view of Three Mile Island.

I felt a lot better when we got across the Mississippi River. Back in the West!

And I was treated to a great sunset just before we landed in Phoenix.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

My Ten Favorite Adventures of 2013

I know most bloggers wrote about their travels in 2013 on January 1, but I'm a bit of a procrastinator. So finally, here are my top 10 adventures of last year! (Drum roll, please...)

Number 10 - Cody, WY - I was here in June with the WINs. We saw a pow-wow, gun fights, beautiful scenery on the Beartooth Highway, and saw a lot of Buffalo Bill look-alikes. Hmmmmm.....

Number 9 - Gulfport/Pensacola - In April, I passed through Gulfport, MS and Pensacola, FL on my way East. I really enjoyed them both. In Gulfport, we saw the Katrina Angels, carved from dead trees left by Hurricane Katrina. We also met up with fellow bloggers, Erin and Mui, a real treat. In Pensacola, we visited Fort Pickens. I love old forts and this one had been on my list for a long time.

Number 8 - Grand Teton NP - A great visit in September, after the summer vacationers went home. Beautiful hiking abounds -

And lots of wildlife, even in the campground!

Number 7 - Selkirk Loop - In August we took a little detour and drove the Selkirk Loop through northern Idaho, British Columbia, and Western Washington. The loop isn't that big, but there's a lot to see. My favorite was the SS Moyie, the world's oldest intact passenger sternwheeler, in Kaslo, BC.

Number 6 - The WIN Dance Rally - This was the first time the rally had been held in Wickenburg, AZ in November and it was a hugh success.

Number 5 - Highway 395, in California - One of my very favorite places. I could go here every year and love it. Late September/early October brings the best weather and fall colors for gorgeous hiking and soaking in natural hot springs.

Number 4 - The East side of Glacier NP - Another of my very favorite places. Lots and lots of the most beautiful scenery anywhere. I was there in July.

Number 3 - Yellowstone NP - In late August and early September I spent a week here and hiked a lot of the trails through the geysers and hot springs. I finally got to see Grand Prismatic Spring from the hillside, which had been on my bucket list for a while.

Number 2 - Crazy Horse - In June, I checked off another bucket list item when I hiked to the top of in Crazy Horse Memorial in the Black Hills of South Dakota. You can only do this a couple times a year, so there is always a big crowd. And now for the big one -

Number 1 - Hawaii!!!! No surprise there, huh? In March, Phil and I, sister Barbara and "brother-in-law" Ron, spent a week on the Pride of America cruise ship, visiting the different islands -

And then spent a week on the Big Island, where I even made some new friends. We had a fantastic time, and this is definitely another place I could go to every year.

The End!