Friday, June 23, 2017

Red Butte Gardens

We stopped by at Red Butte Garden yesterday after our visit to the Huntsman Cancer Institute. We get to start spacing out my lab visits to every three months now. We thought maybe we should visit the gardens each time we go up, as the flowers change with the seasons.

They have lots of terraced gardens and walking paths. It was beautiful. We ran out of time before we got to the natural open space part of the garden.

There is a nice view of Salt Lake City from the top of the garden. This is the newly dedicated Conservation garden. It is drought resistant, and in a few years will have much taller vegetation. It will be fun to watch it change over the years!

A Birthday and a Parade

We had fun going to the Utah Valley Parade of Homes on Wednesday. The house with the nicest lot was on the street where we live! We enjoyed seeing the home furnishings and decorations. Other than this view we didn't find anything we would trade our house for!

Annette and Kent went with us, and since it was her birthday we took a break and went to a late lunch at the Harvest Restaurant at Thanksgiving Point! It was the perfect choice, as it was not only delicious, but quiet enough that you could hear each other as you visited.

Annette and Kent shared a birtheday kiss. Then we all shared her giant piece of carrot cake!

We stopped by at Brittany's to see how the potty training is going. It was somewhat scary having a naked girl sit on your lap, but fortunately, Mabel is doing very well with her training. The method Brittany is using says to let them go naked for a few days so they can feel it drip. It is also nice, because you can catch them in the act of peeing. It seems like a good plan (especially if it is summer).

Ed got to hold the baby with the diaper! She was in a very smiley mood! It was a nice way to end a very fun day!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Mad Hatter Party

Yesterday the Relief Society had an UnBirthday to celebrate 175 years as an organization. Here are two Judys in their mad hats. I covered mine with fresh flowers from our garden.

Tory and Courtney were the perfect picture of elegance for a garden party!

I played a little tiddlywinks with Ana and Adela. Then we became engrossed in two truths and a lie. I learned some very interesting things about the ladies in our ward!

Who knew that Bonnie Parker was a parachutist?

After temperatures approaching 100 degrees yesterday, it was nice that it rained the first half hour of the party. We waited it out inside Cori's house, and then went out to enjoy her beautiful garden when it stopped raining. What a great way to enjoy a summer evening!

Highland Glen and Food Trucks

Monday Ed and I explored Highland Glen park in Highland. It is right behind Lone Peak High School, where the Alpine kids go to school. We were amazed that it had a little lake with a swimming area, a fishing area, kayaks, picnic tables and a ton of ducks! I stepped in duck doo-doo while taking this picture!

Afterwards we stopped in Alpine to support our local food truck roundup. The Art City donuts with Boston Creme filling were delicious!

We got to listen to a local band, the Hooligans play. It was a fun night to be out and about!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

New Car

Ed got an early Father's Day present yesterday, in a new car. We bought a storm blue Hyundai Santa Fe! We're pretty excited about it and plan on getting a tent trailer to do a little camping. Our Mazda CX9 wasn't quite powerful enough to tow the trailer we have in mind. We're now a two Hyundai family!

Happy Father's Day and Mother's Day Family Tree

Our three girls chipped in to get us a joint Father's Day and Mother's Day present--a pretty azalea family tree with four generations on it! If you look closely, you can see the names of our ancestors on it. The girls are the roots!

It looks very beautiful beside our family pictures! Thanks, Brittany, Amanda and Crystal!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Ziel Home

Melissa and Steve invited us over to their house for dinner tonight. It was fun seeing all they had done since we last saw it three years ago when they got married.
The king of the house is Mr. Cat, who looks (and acts) more like a tiger than a cat!
 The friendliest cat was Oreo who came right out to greet us!

Ezra was also a very sweet cat. Their fourth cat, Sharpie, didn't deign to even make an appearance! We didn't measure up!

Melissa is taking harp lessons and played a song for us on her pedal harp. It was interesting to learn how the pedals work!

Melissa was brave enough to try out a new recipe on us--Creamy Chicken and Polenta Casserole. We gave it a big thumbs up!

After dinner Steve gave us a tour of his computer room. He's got an impressive array of testing equipment related to his full-time job. Ed understood much better than the rest of us what was going on back there!

It was a fun way to end our trip to Tuscon. Tomorrow we're heading home to Utah. I keep saying we're going back to Colorado. I have to remember I live in Utah now!

Catalina State Park

Ed and I went for a hike this morning in Catalina State Park, which is just a few miles from Tom and Tina's house. It was beautiful, full of cactus and mesquite, and framed by the Santa Catalina Mountains.

This Saguaro Cactus is over three times my height and also over twice my age!

The scenery was so striking it made you feel like you were in an old west movie!

Ed was very dapper looking in his cute hat!

My favorite flower d'jour was this pretty orange trumpet looking flower. I wish I had an app for Arizona wildflowers so I could figure out what it is!

After we got back from hiking Tina and I went and got pedicures together! We're ready to show off our pretty toes now that sandal weather is here to stay!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Hot Time in Tuscon

We thought we'd beat the heat (104 degrees today) and go for an early morning walk in the area around Tom and Tina's house. We ended up walking almost 7 miles before we got home. We enjoyed seeing the desert flora and fauna (a coyote eating a rabbit) close up!

In the afternoon we went to the Evergreen Cemetery where Ed's parents were buried. This tree was very small 23 years ago!

We also stopped at the baby land section of the cemetery where Lydia Joy (Melissa and Steve's baby) was buried last year.

Afterwards we went to downtown Tuscon where we rode the light rail. It was so nice and air conditioned that we didn't want to get off!

The street car dropped us off on a 4th Avenue, a cute little shopping street downtown.

There was a real mix of stores and restaurants, but in general it was a bit like a trip to Nogales, Mexico, with lots of Mexican artisanry.

We capped off our Mexican day with a delicious dinner at La Hacienda, back in Oro Valley. It specializes in food from the Yucatan, and we enjoyed the Cochinita Pibil, which reminded us our our trip to the Yucatan!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Tuscon Temple

We took Tom, Tina and Melissa, as well as their friend Joanna, to the Tuscon Temple open house today. It is the only LDS temple with a dome on the top, which gave it a totally different look!

This photograph of the outside gave you a better idea of what the temple looks like at the foot of the mountain.

We enjoyed walking around the back and seeing the beautiful native landscaping. I love Saguaro cacti! And I love this picture of the Bush brothers!

We enjoyed a great Italian meal at Guiseppe's, where everyone knows Tom's name! Not just the wait staff, but everyone in the kitchen as well! It was like going to Cheers!

We had a little time to relax when we got home. I watched Tina show Melissa how to bind a quilt.

Ed showed Tom and Hector our Alpine Nature Center website. Hector has been helping Tom out since Tina hurt her shoulders. It is nice to have someone they trust to help get Tom to bed at night and up in the morning. It is also fun, because Hector brings fresh bread from the bakery he works at! The marbled rye alone is worth the trip to Tuscon!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Happy Birthday Ed!

Ed turned a decade older today, and was able to celebrate with his brother for the first time in many years! Tom surprised him with a clown bundt cake! Fortunately, Ed was not afraid of it!

We arrived in Tuscon just in time to enjoy dinner with the Arizona Bush family. It was fun that Melissa dropped by, as well!

It is nice having a blog so I can see how long it has been since we've been here. We came to Melissa's wedding in 2014! Now that we live in the west maybe we can visit more often.

We drove 5 hours from Page, AZ to get to Tuscon. We dropped by the Glen Canyon dam in the morning to take a tour, but the dam tour was cancelled due to high winds! Those same winds followed us all the way to Tuscon! We're hoping for calm weather from here on out!

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Dam bridge Shadow

Ed and I are on our way to Tuscon, and are spending the night in Page, AZ. We got here in time to see the sun going down and casting a beautiful shadow of the dam bridge on the side canyon wall.

We were excited to see our own shadow as we walked across the bridge!

We're hoping to get a tour of Glen Canyon Dam tomorrow morning before we resume our journey.

In a fit of madness we opted for fajitas for dinner tonight. We're both so full we don't know how we'll be able to digest it before we hit the road tomorrow!