Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A Trip to the Desert

Rick and I celebrated our 24th anniversary a little over two weeks ago.  We wanted to go someplace a little warmer than UT because it had been so very cold, so we opted for Scottsdale, AZ.  We had not been there and we had some SW standby tickets that we needed to use.  We were lucky to have good weather while we were there....in the 70's.  We arrived on Saturday and drove straight to the temple because it was going to be closed for two weeks.  We went through a session and it was very nice.  There were a lot of weddings going on and a lot of patrons attending.  The inside of the temple was very different than any other temple I have been in.  The layout is interesting.  Somehow I lost my locker key and couldn't even remember where my locker was so it took a little time to find my clothes:)  Afterwards we were very hungry and on our way out to the condo we found a bbq dive that served up fantastic bbq. (It really was a dive but sometimes these places really serve up some good grub:)
On Sunday we drove out to Queen Creek (about 45 min away) to attend church with Robert and Mary (Rick's nephew and his wife) and afterward we got to visit their family in their new home.  It is very nice and roomy for them and their three kids.  We had a wonderful dinner and just really enjoyed watching the family interact with each other.  Ashley has really grown up and she has a really cute personality.  Kelsey is as funny as ever and so is Cameron.  They say that he is the class clown in school.  It was great to see how they all really love each other.  We came away from that experience feeling very happy and uplifted.  Thanks R&M for that:)  On our way back to the condo we got to drive past the Gilbert Temple that is being built.  It is gorgeous!   
The next day we went out to Glendale's Old Town and had fun poking through the shops.
We also stopped at a chocolate factory and just missed the last tour of the day.  We did get some free samples though:)  Every where we went there were lots and lots of orange trees.  Occasionally we saw some lemon trees as well.  Very fun and different than what we're used to.
On Monday we were able to go to the Botanical Gardens.  It was really neat to see and learn about the flora and fauna of the area.  Even though my feet were hurting we took the short hike up to Hole in the Rock to watch the sunset over Phoenix.  It was pretty spectacular!
The next day we got up early and hit the links.  We golfed nine holes and just enjoyed being outdoors.  Afterwards we put on our swimsuits and got into the pool (just steps from our room).  It was a nice day and it felt good to feel the sun shine down on us. 
Here's Rick catching some rays and a nap:)
After the pool we went to the zoo.  That's always a fun event.  We came across these two orangutans
that were enthralled with a little service dog that was standing with it's owners outside next to us.  It was fun to watch their curiosity with the dog.
On Wednesday we drove over to Superstition Mountain and went through the museum.  When Gary was a teenager he was enthralled with the legends of Superstition Mountain and of the supposed hidden gold mine up there.  It really is a beautiful mountain.  Just down the road was Goldfield Ghost Town.  We had fun wandering around and seeing the sights.  We took a tour down an old mine shaft (really only about 20 feet underground) and it was interesting to learn about the lives of these gold miners.  Mining is NOT an easy job.
Here's Rick standing net to a giant Saguaro with the old town behind him.  I am telling you I have never seen so many Saguaros in my life.  Even growing up in the desert I had not seen too many.  Some of them were massive!  That night we met up with three different misson friends of Rick's (and their wives) and they enjoyed catching up and reminiscing about the mission days.  It was nice to be with them.  The next day was Thursday our scheduled date to fly out.  We found out that the SL airport was going to be closed all day due to freezing rain and since we were flying standby there was no way we were going to make it home.  So we rented a different vehicle and started driving.  I was not happy about this change in plans because I'm not one for road trips......especially unplanned ones.  Anyway, we got as far as St. George about 9:30 that night than drove the rest of the way on Friday.  Despite this little kink in our plans it was a fun getaway with my sweetie:)


  1. I'm delighted, Janell, that you got to celebrate your anniversary in Scottsdale. Isn't it a quaint little town? ...(well, not so LITTLE nowadays, I guess.) We lived in Tempe when we'd been married just five years, and our first two boys were born there in a Mesa hospital, so we LOVED that whole area! That was OUR temple, and we loved it. (When we get together again, I'll tell you about the first time we went there with me wearing my dress backwards...)
    Being with Robert and Mary truly DOES bring good feelings into our hearts, and I'm glad you got to see their new home. They were in their other Queen Creek home when we visited them awhile back.
    Aren't those orange and lemon trees fascinating?! And their blossoms smell so beautiful in the spring!
    It was good you were able to get back home okay--you got an extra stay at the St. George House! :) You said you don't care for road trips, but I sure DO! And I absolutely LOVE unplanned road trips! We had one just last week while in Atlanta, and it turned out fun! Glad your's did too!

  2. Good ol Mesa! makes me miss my mission :) mostly miss the warm weather! :) looks like a lot of fun. Trav and I should do that sometime