Valley of the Sun ~ Phoenix, AZ

We drove into Phoenix on a rainy day, but having lived in Phoenix for roughly 20 years of my life, precipitation is always welcomed by those living in the Valley of the Sun.  Given that we had been in colder climates recently, a little rain was not a deterrent to us.

Most of our time here has been focused on sorting through items in our storage unit and closing that out, with many trips to local shelters, which we are sure will be greatly appreciated as this market was hard hit by the housing crisis.

We also were able to spend an evening with friends Carl and Marcia and felt fortunate to be able to do so, given that everyone is busily preparing for the holidays.  Marcia, always the trooper, had just had knee surgery two days before, but that did not discourage her from joining us for dinner.  We had a lovely time at P. F. Chang’s and caught up on what has gone on in each others’ lives.

Marcia & Me

An event that was taking place while we were in Phoenix was Las Noches de las Luminarias (the nights of the lights) at the Desert Botanical Garden.  These gardens are some of my favorites and we absolutely loved this event when we last attended it.  It did not disappoint us this time either.  It was a magical experience to wander through the 50-acre garden with more than 8000 luminarias lighting the paths.  With 10 musical groups performing nightly throughout the garden and a delectable dinner provided, it was a truly enchanting evening.   Anyone visiting Phoenix should put this on their must-see list, as it is a wonderland of arid plants from around the world, aromatic herb gardens, wildflower gardens bursting with color, artwork, and birds of the southwest.

From here we are heading to Sedona, where we previously lived, to spend the holidays with friends.  Since we had almost no time to get out and enjoy nature this visit, we plan to come back in a couple of weeks and hike to our hearts’ content.

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