Vacation Pictures and A Few Recent Pins


I thought I’d share two pictures from our recent trip to Arizona, as the garden pictures from Agritopia didn’t have any people in them (and what fun is that?).

But just two – ’cause I don’t want to be that person who shares “just a few pictures” and 45 minutes later your eyes are glazed over and you’re sure you probably don’t need to visit where ever they’ve just been.

So that’s our happy (and warm!) little fam in front of the casita (little house) where my dad and step mom live during the winter. We were doubly blessed that we were able to visit them and stay in their lovely home. We visited an historic mission, swam, shopped (well, the girls- the guys visited some old nuclear missile base), and hung out during our visit.

And, yes, I said swam. It was 89 degrees, the water was warm, the skies blue…and I was in heaven.

We also hiked in the Santa Rita Mountains that are just a 20 minute drive from my dad’s house. It actually reminded me a bit of hiking in Central Oregon, except that every once in awhile I’d see a cactus or agave-type plant in between the pines and maples. Many of the trees were not leafed out yet, but we saw a lot of maple leaves on the ground, so I’m thinking that’s what the trees were.

Yeah, tree identification is not my strong point.

It was a great time to visit southern Arizona, as all the many varieties of cactus were blooming or starting to bloom. It’s simply amazing to look at these spiny, often times ugly plants (sorry- some are just so weird looking!) and see the most beautiful, crepe-paper-like blooms in pinks, purples, oranges, and yellows.

And have I talked enough about how wonderful it was to be warm? ‘Cause I could go on and on about that.

While in Arizona, I used my iPad to keep up-to-date with the blog and to find wonderful things to pin to my Pinterest boards (are you on Pinterest yet? If not, take a look at this post I wrote about what Pinterest is and how it works – and then leave a comment letting me know you’d like an invite, I love to see you there!)

Recent Pins


1. Spicy Orange Chicken Stir-Fry from Bon Appetit. I was drawn to the fact that it’s a normal stir-fry, just with added orange juice, which should give it a great flavor. Looks fresh and healthy and not deep-fried like a lot of Chinese orange chicken dishes.

2. Sparkling Rhubarb-Vanilla Lemonade from Kitchen Simplicity. Rhubarb’s coming into season over the next few months, so I’m definitely going to try this. Not sure about the vanilla, though…sometimes it can be overpowering in a drink to me, so I’ll probably leave it out.

Did I mention that I was able to pick lemons and make lemonade right away with them while we were in Arizona? So good…

3. How to knit a rag rug using fabric scraps from Crazy Mom Quilts. This is so cute – something my daughter would love. And fabric scraps? I think I may have a few (hundreds? thousands?) laying about.

4. DIY All-Purpose Citrus Cleaner from The Prairie Homestead. I’ve been using vinegar for years with a bit of essential oil to cut the smell, but this is a brilliant idea- soak citrus rinds in vinegar before using! You get the extra cleaning power of citrus, plus the lovely fragrance. I’m so doing this!

5. Finally, since these are all things I pinned from the original sources, I want to mention the heartfelt article Jen over at Beauty and Bedlam wrote about the proper way to not only pin things we find on the Internet, but also how to blog about them (credit the source, not just the pin!). I love Pinterest and hope it stays a fun place to find and share inspiration – let’s all work together to keep it that way!

What things have you been pinning lately?



  1. says

    I needed your AZ pictures today! We are getting all sorts of snow in Utah. My front lawn is covered. I happened to be in Tempe the same week you were out there and I have to say the weather was beautiful. Also, you have a very beautiful family.

  2. says

    I moved from Oregon to the central coast of CAlifornia last August, so we have sunshine here, although it’s cool a lot of the time, since we’re right near the water. I enjoyed seeing your AZ pics. OH swimming and shopping sound like FUN :) :) I”m on Pinterest. I’ll have to see if I can find you on there. I really like Pinterest, because it’s like having the benefit of a magazine subscription, but for free. you can find all sorts of ideas there!!! It’s fabulous. Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

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