Rock dove on a saguaro.

Rock dove on a saguaro.

We’re back from a one-week visit to Phoenix to see my folks.

They were both sick with colds the entire time we were in town, but We had a wonderful visit regardless. And thankfully, neither of us seems to have caught anything from them.

It certainly wasn’t as busy a trip as the last time we visited in 2007; no big road trips to Vegas, Sedona, Mexico, or the Grand Canyon. Then again, we didn’t plan for any of that. Because we only went for the one week, we just wanted a chance to relax and unwind.

Mission accomplished!

We spent some time shopping. We sat by the pool. We ate, we drank wine. What more could we ask for?

Still, we did manage to take a few trips to the big city (My parents live about 30 minutes south of Phoenix).

  • We visited an outlet mall…and found surprisingly few deals. I would have thought, with the economy the way it is, shops would be falling over each other trying to get customers through their doors!
  • We landed on the doorstep of my Aunt and Uncle (on my father’s side, from Alberta). They also winter in Arizona, but in a suburb of Phoenix. It was nice to check in. I don’t see that side of the family nearly often enough.
  • We got cultural at the Tempe Festival of the Arts – and saw some fantastic pieces that would look great above our sofa. If only we had more money.
  • We took in our first ever Cirque du Soleil show – the one with horses: Cavalia. Acrobats on Horseback, inside a massive tent during a particularly strong wind storm. The horses were spooked. I’m surprised there were not mishaps.
The tent for Cavalia was beautiful in the twilight.

The tent for Cavalia was beautiful in the twilight.

I think though, for me at least, the highlight of the trip was the Desert Botanical Garden.

Normally I’m not a huge fan of such things – plants don’t really do it for me – but because this was all outdoors and featured mainly cacti and desert flowers, this had a lot going for it. What pushed it over the top though was that artist Dale Chihuly, who works in hand-blown glass, was commissioned to add dozens of sculptures. They are installed in among the plants, and he really is an incredibly creative artist. The variety of pieces was astonishing – and they just echo the natural forms so nicely. The vibrant colours and vivid shapes were gorgeous, and so well suited to the landscape.

These beautiful works of art really helped make the gardens an experience to remember.

I have included a few more photos from or trip below – mostly of the Chihuly exhibits.

Sunset in my parents' community in Casa Grande, Arizona.

Sunset in my parents’ community in Casa Grande, Arizona.

One of the Adobe style buildings near the community pool.

One of the Adobe style buildings near the community pool.

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2 responses »

  1. Honestly…..now I want to go to see this….I was very impressed with the pictrues….Im sure in person would be better…..Im just stunned that you cuold get that close to them….No biggie for adults, but it would terrify me to bring the kids there……so cool.

  2. Yeah, you would definitely need to watch the little ones, but just tell them that the cacti are sharp and urge them to stay on the walkway. It truly is beautiful though – the colours are so vivid in person.

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