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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Jerome Ghost Town

Tea Time

Look, a flower!

King of the hill??

Princess of the hill!

Sunday morning our family (except poor unca Mikie) went to mass then drove up to Jerome.  Jerome is a "ghost town" that was populated by copper miners.  But is still very much populated by businesses and residents.  Pretty little town perched on the side of the mountain.  We walked around a bit then had lunch at Grapes a very good italian restaurant.  Then we drove up to the mountain summit and spent some time enjoying the cool mountain air.  Ella enjoyed "climbing to the top of the mountain" and picking flowers.
After Scott and Bevi went out to a local winery while Mawmaw & Pawpaw spent our last remaining hours with Ella.
Monday morning off to the airport. 
Tuesday we rode around to the east to see the area.  This week we'll just relax and enjoy the local area.  Then on Monday we move down to Mesa to visit some friends. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Family visit

We picked up Scott, Bevi, and Ella at the Phoenix airport on Thursday about 1pm.  It was fun to see them walking from the secure area.  When Ella spotted us she ran towards us.  I won't say who's arms she jumped into, but Mawmaw wasn't as happy as Pawpaw was.
We then ate at Strombolli's for pizza for dinner, very good.  Of course the kids were so tired from their flight it was all they could do to stay awake.  Friday morning Scott and Bevi drove up to the Grand Canyon while Cindy and I enjoyed having Ella all day.  We went hiking down to the river then played in the family center.  We bbq'ed sausage and steaks for dinner and enjoyed our visit. 
Today, Saturday we went to Out of Africa.  This place is highly recommended for a nice family outing.  The terrain is much more representative of Africa than other places we've seen.  We took the Unimog tour which was a little more but the driver took us through the Serengetti area where he fed the lions, tigers, and bears, oh my!  Also the hyenas which are really weird.  We all had treats to feed the other animals.  It was a very nice experience and we all had lots of fun.  Then after that the real fun began:  Tiger Splash!  There is a fenced area with a pool where 6 of the workers and the owner are in there with a white tiger.  The workers run around with a 10 foot pvc pole with an inflatable beach toy on the end while the tiger chases them!  It is incredible to watch how fast the tiger is and how gentle it can be around the guys.  Good thing tigers have retractable claws.  Once the tiger catches the inflatable toy, it usually goes for the throat, the workers finish popping it so the tiger will lose interest and chase the next one.
Then we watched the Anaconda show where Ella got to touch a snake with her dad and Mawmaw.
Well all good things have to end.  Sadly we brought the kids back to the airport this morning.  Just heard that they landed and are driving home.
What a wonderful few days to enjoy the sights we've seen with Scott, Bevi, and Ella.  And of course to have Ella stay with us these last few nights.