One of the nice things about going on vacation is returning home again. It was fun visiting with relatives on our 2,400 mile trip but it was definitely comforting to pull into our cluttered garage safely back home again. (Of course, until I realized how much laundry I had to do.)
I was without internet access for most of the time so Charming Zebra became a little neglected. And then when I returned home I discovered that my laptop wasn’t working any more, either. (Extremely frustrating.) It was also the time that something happened with my WordPress account and I became inundated with spam comments on all my existing blog posts. (Around 3,000.) I was finally able to delete them (as well as a number of legitimate comments) and set up a spam filter. I’m still receiving tons of spam but at least now most of it is caught before it lands on my blog. (WordPress updated itself automatically and that is when I started receiving the flooding of spam comments.)
We have an older computer that I was able to get working so here are a few highlights from the great Summer trip of 2012:
My parents live up in a tiny town in the Arizona mountains. There is not much there but land and sky. My dad owns a number of horses that the kids enjoy riding when we’re up there to visit. They had fun with their horsey companions but were a little sore the next day.
And here was a fun little surprise I had to deal with. At first I thought minivan hating vandals had bashed in the back window but then determined that maybe the window blew out due to the extreme (unworldly) temperatures. Either way, I still had a broken window. Luckily, we were only delayed an additional day while they ordered the glass. I was able to park the van in my parents’ garage so no little critters could take up residence in it while we were waiting to have the window replaced.
A number of years ago, a rat built a huge nest on the engine of the minivan I was driving at the time. We were visiting my parents who lived about 15 miles away from town. The van was old so I had to check the oil level frequently. I just happened to lift the hood to check and discovered the nasty rat’s nest that had been built while the vehicle had been sitting for two days. (Good times.)
We stopped at McDonalds to eat one evening and my eight year old nephew happened to walk by a table where an old looking cowboy sat finishing up his meal. The old gentleman was drawing something on a napkin and my nephew paused to look at it as he walked on by. A few minutes later, the man stood up to leave and walked over to my nephew and handed him the drawing. The old man introduced himself as the local sheriff and chatted pleasantly for a few minutes before he turned to leave.
I loved the kindness of the old sheriff as my nephew was quite excited to receive the napkin drawing.
My kids had fun with the various furry pets.
And also fun with the various cousins.
We had plenty of pool time (and snorkeling) at my brother’s house near Phoenix.
I believe it is a law (or should be) requiring everyone living in the Phoenix area to have a pool. (The days we were there visiting were quite toasty.)
It’s always all about the competition.
On July 4th, we were delighted to be able to light fireworks in front of my brother’s home. There has been a burn ban for a number of years where we live in Texas so no fireworks have been allowed. That’s not the case in Arizona so it was fun for the kids to even be able to light a sparkler.
A beautiful Arizona sunset over the town of Snowflake.
We did have a lovely time visiting with relatives despite the broken minivan window (and colony of bugs in our hotel room.)
So what about you? Any unusual Summertime adventures?