Sunsets – A Photo Prompt

I’m not sure if I prefer sunrises or sunsets …. both can be pretty spectacular and can offer either the perfect way to start the day or the perfect way to end a day.

sunset over Lake Pleasant Arizona

Lake Pleasant, Arizona

Yeah, I’d say enjoying happy hour while watching the sun set is a pretty darn good way to end a day. Can you think of a better way?

Sunset at San Diego California

San Diego, California

Wandering Wednesday Photo Theme – Sunset

Join me for this weeks photo challenge by sharing photographs of Sunsets.

sunset at the beach

Copano Bay, Texas Gulf Coast

We’d love to see YOUR sunset photos. So let’s share and connect … join in and share a link in the comments below or link back to this blog in your own post.

Split Rock Lighthouse Lake Havasu Arizona

Split Rock Lighthouse replica – Lake Havasu, Arizona

Wandering Wednesday – Ingrid’s Inspirations

Each Wednesday I post a different photo prompt as a way for bloggers to share their love of photography and engage with other like minded bloggers. Perhaps this prompt will serve as a little inspiration to pick up the camera in search of a composition or a reason to go through your photo archives. Whether you shoot with your phone, a DSLR or something in-between, don’t be shy ūü§ó share your photos!

Upcoming prompts – the Little Things, Food, Landscapes, Garden, Birds …. get out and shoot or peruse those archives!

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Unbreakable Stemless Wine Glasses

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Why we winter in Phoenix

What is it about the desert southwest that has us returning year after year?¬† It’s obvious we share our¬†desert addiction with hundreds or more like thousands of other visitors.¬†¬†Each¬†winter season, droves of people¬†migrate to¬†Phoenix¬†and the surrounding area to escape the cold and snow.desert sunset

Some folks come for a long weekend visit, while others (us included) stay for months at a time.¬† Let’s face it, with over 300 days of sunshine a year, mild winter temperatures, and sunsets that’ll knock your socks off, it’s hard not to like this part of the United Cactus flowerStates.¬†¬†But¬†there’s a lot more to the valley of the sun than merely the weather.

Sometimes I relish quiet, remote solitude while other times I like the hustle and bustle only a city can offer.¬† Phoenix is unique in offering me the pleasure of both world’s.

Phoenix is not only the capital of the state of Arizona but also the county seat for Maricopa County.  Maricopa County encompasses 9,224 square miles (23,890km) and includes the city of Phoenix along with 13 other cities, 10 towns, over a dozen other unincorporated communities, and 5 Indian Reservations.

fawnEach locale offers its own distinct vibe and topography.¬† Recreational opportunities are¬†endless and¬†diverse ….. hiking, biking, kayaking, golfing, fishing, horseback riding, hot air ballooning, fine dining, casual dining, museums, art galleries,¬†rodeos, car shows, zoos, festivals, casinos, concerts, professional sports, minor league sports, shooting guns, and shooting cameras (my favorite, of course).

Trust me, there is no shortage of things to photograph around here; from wildlife, to beautiful flora Рfauna, to distinct architecture and landscapes.  And of course, those amazing sunsets.desert sunset

The Maricopa County Park System is a recreational delight for locals and tourists alike.¬†¬†Our favorites include¬†Cave Creek Regional Park, Lake Pleasant (week days), and Lost Dutchman State Park.¬† We’ve heard great things about other regional parks,¬†but¬† can’t speak from personal experience due to a failure on my part in making a reservation.¬† wild donkeyWeekends book up and reservations are a must during the peak winter season.

That said, I¬†love going¬†to sleep in a rural setting being serenaded by coyotes and wild burros while the next day I’m able to take¬†an easy¬†twenty-minute drive¬†to shop at a¬†top drawer grocery store/mall or visit a one of a kind museum like the MIM (Musical Instrument Museum).

Or I can drive 45 minutes west and watch cotton being harvested, however if I drive 45 minutes east I can find myself exploring an old ghost town.  Seriously, this place has something for everyone.art gallery

Accommodations vary from rustic tent camping, to RV Park Resorts, to hotels, five-star all-inclusive resorts, to¬†plenty of vacation rentals.¬† In other words, there’s no shortage of overnight options that’ll custom¬†fit anyone’s taste buds.

giraffe

me, my son, and a friend

I¬†haven’t always liked Phoenix, but¬†the more time I spend here the more I like it.¬† Of course, it’s a bonus¬†that both my children now live here, but there’s other relationships as well.

Since Phoenix is such a great place to visit, there’s no shortage of social opportunities.¬†I love¬†meeting up with fellow bloggers, RVer’s, or long-lost friends.

A few weeks ago, I received a phone call from a friend whom I hadn’t seen in twenty-three years.¬† She and I were in a play group together back in¬†the Chicago suburbs¬†when our children were little.¬†¬†In the early 1990’s, Marianne and her family moved to California while¬†my family and I¬†moved to Nevada.¬† Once a year we’d exchange Christmas cards¬†while keeping¬†up with¬†each others¬†ever changing addresses.

Marianne and I enjoy tea and crumpets at the English Rose Tea Room in Carefree, AZ. We haven't changed a bit in twenty-three years ;-)

Marianne and I enjoy tea and crumpets at the English Rose Tea Room in Carefree, AZ.¬† Hmm… there were crumpets on those plates! We haven’t changed a bit in twenty-three years ūüėČ

I¬†picked Marianne up at her son’s home here in Phoenix and the two of us headed out for tea and crumpets.¬† After five hours of visiting, we bid farewell with the promise of getting together again soon.¬† Although she and her husband live in Florida full time, they do¬†enjoy regular visits to¬†Phoenix to¬†see their son.¬† Thus, I’m sure it¬†won’t be another twenty some years before our next luncheon or tea time ūüôā

cactusAnd since we’re speaking of tea, I realize the desert isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.¬† Me? I’m intrigued by the harsh desert landscape and fascinated by the vegetation and wildlife that are able to thrive in such an unforgiving environment.

I love the diversity of activities available, the weather (well, not the summer), and all the friendships, new and old, that we’ve made since we started visiting the valley of the sun.¬† I love hanging with my children and although I always hate saying good-bye, the itch to hitch has set in thus the wheels on the RV will start going round and round in a few days,¬†BUT “we’ll be back“!

Love

May the road rise to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face. And rain fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the hollow of His hand.