Thursday, June 28, 2007

Oh Happy Day!

We celebrated Husband's birthday a little early. About 5 days early, that is. And boy was it a surprise. He knew something was going on but not really sure as to what was REALLY going on. Before heading to our final destination, we stopped at Sonic for a refreshing drink (on a steamy hot day) and then I blindfolded him and off we went. He really was a good sport about it all. I would have been car sick had I been blindfolded from Maricopa to Peoria! It was fun to play the "where are we now?" game with him. He was pretty good, but in the end he had no clue that we were about to walk into his parents home! When there I took his blind fold off and there were a bunch of our sweetest friends and family yelling, "SURPRISE!" I thought it most sweet when all the kiddos came up and said, "Happy Birthday, Mr. C!" and hugged him around his waist or shook his hand. Cherished moments indeed.

There was much conversing, laughing, and eating. We had a wonderful time. There was even a "Birthday Boy Trivia Game" that was set up similar to the TV show "1 vs. 100." Many were surprised by the answers, but in the end... Husband's friends knew him well!

Husband was also treated to a fun gift from some friends of ours in New Mexico. I conspired with Renee (who happens to be a very talented Graphic Designer) to make a professional looking label for his home brew. Boy, did she come through! People thought that I had picked up some "pre-made" beer and took the label off. There were all sorts of thoughts. But, alas, Husband has his own label and his own beer. I think that the label makes the beer quite appealing... everyone wanted to try some and some people even asked if they could take an empty bottle home.

He was also surprised by the generosity of so many people as we collected some funds for Husband to somehow keep his passion for flying alive and well. He is thinking about actually ending his flying days for an extended season for a variety of reasons and will probably pick up RC Airplanes. I think he's pretty excited about putting one together and flying it in one of the local air parks in the valley!

People filtered through for a couple of hours at this "open house" type party... which usually works best when there are quite a few people invited. Husband was thoroughly wiped out after the fact. My sweet, introverted husband! :) I cannot give him too much grief because his nutty extrovert wife was pretty wiped out, too!

There it is... a wonderful birthday for the most wonderful man. I am so thankful to be married to someone as strong, caring, tender, and rooted in the Faith as him.

On his actual birthday we had a delightful dinner at a brewery in downtown Tempe called Gordon Biersch. It was a fun time. Then we headed over to watch the third installation of Pirates of the Caribbean.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Things You Learn...

...Living in the Desert. It's an interesting thing. Husband and I have lived in the Southwest part of the United States virtually all of our lives. He here in the Phoenix area and me in Albuquerque. (Although, I had a brief stint in Nebraska and, after some convincing, was happy to return to the high mountain desert of New Mexico)

If you haven't spent much time here, if any, you may not think that the two places are all that different. I was guilty of that very assumption. Both places have amazing sunsets, ever changing landscape, dirt, and well... that may be about it as far as similarities go.

I have learned some interesting things here.I think the most interesting one, that actually freaked me out at first is because Arizona gets so darn hot it effects the water temperature of what comes out of your faucet. I remember turning on the COLD and out comes perfectly warm bathtub temperature water. I asked Husband if something was wrong with the faucets or the water heater. He laughed. Then told me that's just what happens when it's warm here. Lovely. Strange, don't you think?

Phoenix, unlike Albuquerque, strives to make the city really beautiful with lovely plants and other desert friendly vegetation. (I'm not saying that ABQ is totally ugly or whatever, it's just very different visually than PHX) On top of that, I have been able to learn what most of the plants are in the area. A little surprising but I like that I know what some of the really pretty flowers are called and what different plants are. Maybe a little nerdy, but fun.

It doesn't cool down here at night much. If we were to have triple-digit temperatures in Albuquerque we could anticipate the night bringing relief with a temps going back down to the low 70's or high 60's. Not so much here. The nights will be high 70's, 80's, and maybe still even low 90's. I was informed by the news a few days ago that AZ will probably experience it's first ever overnight low of 100. Awesome. And those of you that know me find it really funny that God sent me to Arizona (thankfully, with the man I love most!) to live. I don't "do" heat so well because I sweat a lot. Well, folks, I must tell you that I am getting used to it here and 100+ doesn't seem so "oven-ish" as it used to. Still hot, no doubt, but I am adjusting.

The sun is more intense here.
Holy bright outside, Batman (bring those shades!)
If you want snow... go to Flagstaff.
Traffic all day and night it seems... (goodness we are the 5th largest city in the country!)
Air conditioner will run in your car even in the winter (from time to time)
You notice when the "Snowbirds" leave the valley... decrease in population/traffic
Suburbs, you can be in 6 towns in one day (maybe even 10!) I shop in Tempe, cross the street and I'm in Chandler. It's nutty sometimes to try and figure out where you are!
The cactus are huge and's awesome.

I am sure that there are more. We are now in the throws of triple-digit weather. They say we may break the record of 122 this summer. woohoo! (blah!) Then they joke with us and say we will have a cool down. Their definition of cool down is 96. Oh well, there is a pool with my name on it just around the corner.

So, come visit... winter is best... but it's so beautiful in the summer with all the plants and flowers. If you come in the summer we can spend time at the pool and other fun things. It's really quite a fun place...

I love living here.