As some of you noticed, I was MIA this past week, partaking in a good ol’ fashioned family vaycay.
Here in Canada, Spring often likes to take the scenic route if you get my drift. This year our winter has been abnormally long, so it was time to take matters into my own hands! Funny how a simple three hour jaunt by plane can take me from cold and snow…
Phoenix, Arizona! As first timers, we had to take in the sights.
First up, we took a totally bad-ass ride in a hummer through the desert near the Superstition Mountains (I have two teen boys, what can I say?)
Our guide was awesome, and really gave us a huge lesson in geography, desert life and local legends, like the Lost Dutchman’s Goldmine.
He even pointed out what a saguaro cactus looks like after it’s hit by lightning–see how the top is sheared right off?
I loved the fact that we managed to catch part of the blooming season, and so it was much greener than other times of the year.
Amazing, isn’t it? We did some hiking, but after my Mount Kilimanjaro climb last year & subsequent Achilles tendon blowout, I was more wary of my limitations.
Out in Sedona, the Red Rock reminded me a lot of the Ngorongoro Crater in Africa. We hiked to Cathedral rock, but I only went part of the way while hubs and the kids went all the way to the top where the vortex is.
We also checked out the Aztec Ruins, Montezuma’s Castle. After seeing the site, I’m convinced that I’ll have to write about this culture. How incredible is that structure?
I also had some fun with angles and colors while there, messing around with some of Stina Lindenblatt’s awesome photography tips.
(If you don’t know about Stina’s Blog, Seeing Creative, then go over and check it out! Not only does she have a not-to-be-missed Friday Round Up for Writers, she also offers insightful writing advice and photography tricks & hints!)
I learned about the desert, and was amazed by how full of life it is. There are multiple sources of food and water to be found, something I never realized.
In fact, now that I’ve seen the desert first hand, I’m tempted to redo the Desert Entry in the Setting Thesaurus!
So there you have it, a fab little week away to recharge the batteries. It was blissful to set writing & blogging aside for a week (even though it meant missing our NEW WEATHER THESAURUS launch!) and just kick back.
Have you taken time to enjoy the world around you lately? If not, ditch the computer for an afternoon and go get yourself some nature!
Becca Puglisi is an international speaker, writing coach, and bestselling author of The Emotion Thesaurus and its sequels. Her books are available in five languages, are sourced by US universities, and are used by novelists, screenwriters, editors, and psychologists around the world. She is passionate about learning and sharing her knowledge with others through her Writers Helping Writers blog and via One Stop For Writers—a powerhouse online library created to help writers elevate their storytelling.
Michael Wulf says
That’s not a vacation, that’s my back yard! 😉
Here in Ontario we’re having a very ‘Canadian Spring’ as well. Bleh! I’m definitely jealous, Arizona sounds beautiful!
thankyou for sharing, such lovely photos, maybe oneday I will get to see if for myself. Thanks also for the writing tip.
Cynthia Chapman Willis says
What great pics! I’ve always wanted to check out Arizona. So glad you had a great time with your boys! And you’re right–I need to get me some nature (especially some with warmth and sunshine).
Looks like you had a great time, a big contrast to Canada. The blooming cactus are pretty, but you have to watch out for those stingers. We planted in our flower garden what I think is called Devil’s Tongue, they are a small cactus and have beautiful yellow flowers in the summer, but the stickers are so small you can’t see them, but you sure know when you have them in you.
C.R. Evers says
Great pictures. It is fun playing with camera’s isn’t it?
Yes, I must say this has been the longest winter ever! I love Sedona. The Rockies are majestic but the Red Rocks are cozy, warm. Glad you got to escape the snow and be in sunny skies.
Traci Kenworth says
Vacations can lead us to the possibilities of a new story or help us rejuvenate an old one. The Aztec ruins are something I’ve been fascinated about for a long time, I even have them as part of one story I’m working on. Their legends are so awesome and such fun to work with. Glad you enjoyed your time and picked up new info along the way. Welcome back!!
Katrina S. Forest says
Love the photos — that had to be a major jump for you. I feel like the weather where I live has been hit or miss lately, but we’ve definitely had days where I’ve come home and announced, “We’re bad parents if we don’t take the baby for a walk today!”
Jeff King says
Awesome pictures, I am jealous… I’ll try to get out and enjoy the spring. Thx for the infusion of joy.
Eep, Arizona…never been out there, but I don’t know if I could take it. You think the heat wouldn’t scare me off, being Floridian and all, but something about the whole desert thing keeps me away.
Gorgeous pictures though–love the cacti!
Holly Ruggiero says
Sun? Warmth? Good for you. Great photos and it sounds like you had a great time.
I’m so jealous you were able to get away, especially to Sedona. I love it there.
Stina Lindenblatt says
Wow, these are awesome photos, Angela. Even the first one is great (perfect composition, I might add), even if it’s a horrible reminder of what we’re still dealing with. 😛
I love Tuscon too. Not sure I’d want to live there in the summer. Too hot!
Angela Ackerman says
Thanks everyone for the comments. It was a really spectacular place and I would love to go back. I have the feeling I only got to experience a sliver of what the countryside had to offer. 🙂
That trip looks amazing! Last Nov. my fiancee and I went on a roadtrip from LA to Tucson (with many zigzags in the middle!) and it was one of the best vacations of my LIFE! We went there instead of Hawaii and at first I was disappointed. After our week in the dry sun, hiking mountains where we were the only souls for miles, I realized we’d made the right choice!
Glad you enjoyed your trip!
Beautiful holiday pics!
Vegetarian Cannibal says
I used to live in Nevada where the tumbleweeds would blow into the street and cause road accidents, haha! I love the desert–it has such a stark beauty to it. All that red rock and sand… I miss it sometimes. Glad you had a good time!
Becca Puglisi says
Glad you had fun, Angela, and glad you could find the beauty in a new place. Mostly, though, I’m glad you’re back :). Sorry about the snow…
Julie Musil says
Holy cow, these photos are amazing! I’m so glad you had a great time on the family vacation.
Great vacation and great pics 🙂 I love to travel, it’s great to feel first-hand so many different ambients, things and cultures! Thanks for sharing!
Okay, I live near Seattle and actually go TO CANADA (mountains of interior BC) to FIND SUN. Love skiing up in the great white North but, must admit, those Utah pix are amazing! Thanks for sharing.
Kayeleen Hamblin says
That looks like an awesome trip. I live in southern Utah, so I get plenty of sun. I would miss it terribly if I had to go without it.
Bish Denham says
YEAH! I’m glad you had a good time. I climbed up Bell Rock in Sedona and walked all around the cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde. Beautiful country. I hope you were able to drag some spring weather back up to Canada.
Lisa Gail Green says
Ohhh, I am SO JEALOUS! I miss my Sonoran desert! I lived in Tucson for 5 years and absolutely adored it. I miss it even more now. And Sedona?? One of the best vacation spots ever. 😀 Sigh. Thanks for giving me a little taste again.
Matthew MacNish says
Wow! This trip looks so cool.
And thank goodness for someone using a hummer where it’s actually needed, unlike the people around here who commute to work in those things.
Laura Pauling says
Awesome! I’ve never been that far out west. There are no deserts in New England. I almost picture a desert more like the Sahara, blowing wind, nothing but sand – but that’s what movies will do for you. Pretty cool. the hummer trip sounds awesome!
Sounds like a great vacation! So glad you liked the desert. I now live near the desert and have learned to love its unique beauty. I never realized just how many different shades of green there are once you eliminate deciduous trees.