Tag Archives: travel

The Road to OZ

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The Road to OZ

It’s been 2.5 years since I last sat down and gave attention to this blog.  Since I gave attention to the writing I love so dearly and the tool in which I most effectively process life’s shifting landscape.   The tool that allows me to bring connection to my circles.

In these 2.5 years, I have been wrestling with purpose, passion, values, self-worth, belief, and a loud inner critic that has invited me to play small.  I bought in to the lies of that critic.  The lies that it doesn’t matter if I write my stories.  It doesn’t matter if I share those stories.  It doesn’t matter if I stop bringing you in to my world.  It doesn’t matter if I live in alignment with my integrity and values system.  It doesn’t matter if I shave off a little edge of my authenticity to help people digest my life’s journey.  I bought in to the lie that in order to stay safe, to survive, I had to shed a part of me that others may not appreciate.  I chose silence.  I chose complacency.  I chose to don the masks.

At the beginning of 2017 (my 40th birthday), I began to tame that nasty inner critic.  I got clear on my values. I stepped back in to alignment.  I started creating visions of all that I wanted to manifest and I threw caution to the wind taking a trust fall straight in to the arms of the loving Universe.  I had Absolute clarity that it was time to quit playing small and it was time to step in to my power.

So it turns out that it DOES matter if I share my stories.  It matters to me.  And when I flow from that place of alignment, that place of listening, my stories stir something in others because we are all connected.  We are all taking this life journey together.  My story is your story or the story of someone you know.   I hope my sharings will inspire, push boundaries, cause you to listen to your universal nudges, step in to alignment with yourself and your 2017-07-13 07.56.57values, take risks, spark imagination, and if nothing else, help you to connect to the world around you.  Sitting here, at my desk in the Costa Rican Rainforest (more on that to come!), letting the words spill out of me, I have this elation.   I’m semi-giddy with excitement.  I’m hopeful the story munchkins will forgive my 2.5 year denial of their existence and visit me often going forward.   I’m fully committed to honoring the words whispered to me in the night, and on my runs, and any time they smack me upside the head singing in their munchkin voices, “This world you are experiencing is just SO magnificent.  Share the wonderment! Follow the yellow brick road.”

This blog will continue to cover a vast array of topics that will include family adventures, travel, living in Costa Rica, nature-inspired learnings, and general sharings of something that lights me up or makes me go hmmmm.  I will continue to spill the thoughts of living a freethinking, open-spirited family life.  I will have a secondary wordpress blog at SoGoodSoPure (coming very soon!) that will cover topics related to my Coaching Business.  There you will find topics geared toward women who are wanting to shed shame, learn vulnerability, find their authentic voice, step in to their unique power, and begin sharing their gifts with the world.  Both blogs will continue to be intimate and sometimes raw in their content.  Not all stories are happy stories but that does not lessen their need to be shared.  Life is messy and in the messy is where we feel most alone. Sharing our stories can be the catalyst of connection and ease our loneliness.  This is what I seek to do.  I fully believe that a life unmasked, a life untidy, is a life worth living. And the more we show up authentically in this big big world the more the world will heal.

That said, it weighed heavily on me as to whether or not I should go through and deleteyellowbrickroad the old posts in this blog as some are controversial, some are angry, and some are misplaced, and some I no longer identify with.  I concluded that those blogs are the bricks that paved my yellow brick road.  The stories, releases, perspectives, and feelings were necessary and are NOT meant to be erased in order to appease an audience of readers.  If you aren’t a fan of the journey I traveled to be where I am today, no problem.  Maybe instead, appreciate that the journey brought you the content you are reading today.  These new sharings of my life experiences/observances are the next yellow bricks in what is certain to be a lifetime of brick laying because I’m not certain one ever reaches OZ.

Journey On, Readers.   Journey On.

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These Present Moments

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IMG_2354Time is elusive.  Moments fleeting.  I know that this is true because I sit here listening to water falling from the mountains in a force so powerful it carves its own path to the stream below.  The water is proof of time.  Proof of forward movement.  I recognize this moment as a moment of awareness.  Awareness of time and of life in motion.

Glacier National Park has provided me a moment that has become moments that have become space that have become experience.  A string of single moments strung together to ignite a sensory explosion so breathtaking that its existence is hardly fathomable.  Hence the need for awareness of time.  The proof that these moments have existed.

There was the moment when I stumbled across an older woman wading in the icy waters of IMG_2166Lake McDonald.  That moment inspired by this female pathfinder became a moment turned moments turned experience.  I took a chance and joined her.  I stripped down to my skivvies, climbed to the front of my kayak, became encouraged by my boys standing on the shore chanting, “Do it! Do it! Do it!”, and leaped.  Jumped right in to the ice cold waters.  Fully immersed in the icy waters and vowing to last more than just a few seconds, I had to remain focused on each individual breath.   Each spacious moment.  I swam to the woman who had inspired this jump and I learned that she was a spry 72 years old!  Her spirit and energy filled me and we swam together for a span of nearly 20 minutes or more.  Her moments inspiring my moments.  My moments inspiring moments within each member of my family who all joined in the experience for a few seconds or a few minutes.  If we allow ourselves, we find we are all pathfinders.  We are all both inspiring and inspired.

I was fully empowered and alive, simply because of a moment turned moments turned experience.  A bunch of tiny moments strung together to become part of me and my story.  Time both present and moving.

There were many other pinch-worthy moments reminding me of life and progress and the enormity of time and space.  Moments that I grasped and followed in to experience.  When standing in awareness, fully awake, only then does one become fully immersed in this journey called life.  I’m thankful that I’m finally seeing the moments presented to me and no longer sleeping through them.  May you too, reader, become more present in your moments and find in those moments a variety of experiences.

Just for my recollection, when many other moments want to take the space that these moments occupy, I want to jog my memory with these bullet point reminders:

* The most serene campsite in which daily deer would pass through and even the occasional black bear.
* Observing Marmots in play.
* 9 Blissful Days of family unity and zero electronics.
* Watching a mosquito feed on Adam and instead of finding annoyance in its need for blood, appreciating the awesomeness of sharing life and observing a belly fill with nutrients. Appreciating all life.
* Listening to each of my boys lead their first family meditations.  The perspective of  a child is something we can all learn from.
* Hearing what words the campfire and trees spoke to my boys.  The boys are still open enough to hear nature and that encourages me to keep listening and practicing mindfulness.
* The day G cried because he had hugged a tree and felt a connection so deep he grieved leaving the tree behind.
* Hiking for 3 miles with the boys and at the end stumbling across a landscape of waterfalls and vegetation that cause you to believe you could really leave your life behind and live in the wild.  The forest somehow feels more natural than returning to city life.
* Nights under the stars with your best friend and lover snuggled in a hammock made for one. Knowing that all is right with the world as long as you are together.
*MARSHMA……..LLOW!!!!
* A bike ride up the Going to the Sun Road when the road is closed to vehicles.  Just you, your boys, countless waterfalls, a river, and the occasional deer.
* Laughing hysterically when it rains so hard on that bike ride that you are not even able to see straight ahead.  Knowing that you are alive and you are teaching your boys to laugh when crying would be easier!
* Introducing the No Trouble Bubble.  Looking at the father of your children and laughing because what is being said in the bubble is both hilarious and frightening and the bubble confirms that as parents we are succeeding.
*  Meditation in a place isolated enough to believe that you are no longer human…in fact you are water.  Transitioning, fluid, and unbreakable.

 

Time may be elusive but I am determined to be present for every moment possible.  May you be present as well.  Journey On.

 

Dialogue with Costa Rica

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I’ve just spent this fabulous three day weekend in an intensive journaling workshop in which individuals dig deep in to their subconscious and really do some very therapeutic and challenging psychological work.  While today was very challenging and gave me painful insight in to my most important relationship with myself and my other most important relationship with the man I love, I also had some beautiful remembrances.  Many things are far too personal to share here but over the next few days I feel it would be lovely to share some of the lighter entries from my spiritual journal.  On a side note, if any of you ever have the opportunity to take a Progoff Intensive Journaling Workshop I would HIGHLY recommend it.

Today  I was asked to recall an oxygen moment.  An oxygen moment is a point in my life when I felt that everything was just as it should be and I felt completely whole.  Once I had chosen a moment in my life, then I was to dialogue with that moment and reflect on what it had to teach me about my life today.  So what follows is my dialogue with Costa Rica.

A:  I don’t think a day goes by when I don’t think of the time I spent with you.
CR:  I will forever live in you.
A:  I believe that to be true.  I became more spiritual and self aware after being with you.
CR:  What moments do you remember?
A:  That’s the amazing thing.  I remember so much.  I’ve held on to sensations, sights, sounds, people…even the looks of love on Adam’s face.  They are all so vivid.  They’ve become a part of me.
CR:  Just tell me all the ones you can remember in the next 3 minutes.
A:  I remember:
Waking to the monkeys dropping seeds on the tin roof
Lizano Sauce
Kelly and her 2 hour massage
Bike rides to town
White water rafting and the abundance of trees
Sunsets at the ocean
“Highway”
Cinnamon Bark
Spiders on my face
Eating live termites
Cutting a coconut
Sloths
The feel of a wax wing
Vipers
Warm Sun
Making love while Adam held me in a window
A car ride across the country
A neck brace
Tomato Soup
A love letter from Adam “I’ve never questioned you”
A cockroach on Adam’s face
Making love in flower petals
A natural hot spring
Feelings of being embraced in unconditional love
Suspension Bridges
A 15 year anniversary dinner surprise
I could go on and on and on but my 3 minutes is up.
CR:  Wow!  You remember a lot!
A:  Yes, more than any other trip and the funny thing is I only have about 6 or 7 pictures from this trip.  I was just living it.  Taking it moment by moment.  And it’s stayed with me.
CR:  What feeling did you leave with?
A:  The feeling that Adam and I were so lucky to have each other.  The knowing that I needed to simplify my life.  I needed to spend more quality time with the boys and a knowing that nature is my healer.
CR:  Why have you not come back?
A:  Life changed
CR:  Go deeper
A:  Because I am afraid to feel that alive again.  I’m afraid that I’m losing all I believed in.
CR:  What do you know to be true today?
A:  That nature is still my healer.  Adventure still calls me.  I can find wholeness again.  I want Adam beside me the next time I visit you.

Feedback:  As I read this I feel heavy that I’ve been neglecting a part of myself.  Of course I don’t feel whole…I let nature go when I left Soldier Trail.  I let adventure go when Adam and I pulled apart.  I stopped growing when I stopped hoping for bigger things.  I stopped healing in ways that are vital for me.  I died.

 

 

 

RV Lessons

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Update:
Today we said goodbye to Shadow Cruiser, our beloved RV.  We needed money to pay for the book that Adam has been writing (a book that had many pages written while Adam journeyed solo in that big RV) and the sale of our RV was just enough to cover our costs.  In the past 2.5 years, Shadow Cruiser has carried us safely across the country.  Twice.  He has housed us at beaches on the WA and OR coasts, taken us to Crater Lake, Journaling Workshops, given Adam alone time to write his book, and this past summer housed us for 10 days in Glacier National Park while we began the process of reuniting and healing as a family.  We all grieved Shadow Cruiser leaving today.  Many of us with tears of sadness and gratitude because Shadow Cruiser was more than an RV to us.  He was our lifeline for a bit.  Our safe haven.  Our key to adventure.  A reminder that when all things material are lost (jobs, houses, cars, reputations) we are still abundantly rich as long as we have each other.  So in memory of our beloved Ford Jamboree, I am reposting this blog from our first adventures.
Give me an RV and I’ll learn a thing or two (or maybe 10 or 20).
Day one we drove an entire two hours to Phoenix!  In the rain I might add. We decided two hours was a great introduction to the life of RVing and opted to barge in on Uncle Aaron where we all crashed for the night and indulged in the most glorious, long, hot showers.  Yep, just two hours in to the trip and those showers felt like the gods raining down pure bliss upon our bodies.  We awoke in the middle of the night to a true desert monsoon complete with a barrage of lightening, thunder and rain.  A monsoon felt like the perfect sendoff from AZ.  A personal farewell.  One last beauty of a storm to remember our home state by.
On the road again.  For real this time.  And it took practically no time at all for the RV to start giving us rapid life lessons.
On this trip we quickly learned that one person doing his “duty” in the bathroom was enough to make every fly envious of our party on wheels.  One deposit in the mobile toilet led to multiple miles of nose-plugging, fart jokes, and sometimes gagging.  But either we have adjusted to the smell (I am so hoping this is not the case!) or the “stuff” has now settled in to a better position in which it is not privy to tease us with its intoxication any longer.  We quickly adjusted to make sure we could find public toilets for those urgent and necessary bodily functions.  So far so good.

The RV also quickly initiated us in all things mechanical and broken.   Even though our $5500 dollar oldie- but- goodie was checked off as in fantastic shape by our local RV repair shop, much to our dismay we were making large lists of things that must be fixed.  For example our AC in the cab was not working so whenever Adam or myself was driving we had to have the windows down.  Sitting in a sweltering 95+ degree cab would be great for those boxers looking to lose poundage in sweat.  As much as we would’ve liked to down an ice cold beverage our RV took another hefty dump on our privilege to luxury.  The gas would not work which meant all of our food in the fridge/freezer was quickly becoming as warm and soggy as the midwest summer.  It also meant that our stovetop would not work and we were unable to get any hot water.  Being unemployed and having zero income meant sucking it up and finding pain in the ass alternatives to eating out so a quick trip to the gas station and two styrofoam coolers full of ice later we made a desperate attempt to save that necessity we refer to as food.  By day 7 I was near tears dealing with soggy packaging, cooking everything on a campfire or eating it cold, and just completely frustrated with the inability to eat anything other than the few things that sat before me.  In that moment I started realizing just how much my life has changed and how I was simply spoiled prior to this change of course.  By the way, recognizing that I am food spoiled does not mean I WANT to change.  This girl hates to cook, gets cravings, indulges in cravings and enjoys being served yummy perfectness by someone in a uniform who has magical cooks and dishwashing elves somewhere behind closed doors.  Yep, that is one indulgence I’d like to never lose but I guess I’m out to learn something new about myself even if it means sacrificing my favorite luxury.  I’m learning that I’m thankful that I have any food at all.  I have enough calories and energy to sustain all 6 of us and that’s good enough for me.  And besides, those special nights when we do eat in those wonderful establishments called restaurants I find that every bite is mind-numbingly delicious!

As we traveled for the next week I was also to learn that showers are hard to come by (I didn’t shower for 6 whole days!) but when they do come every drop is magical.  So magical that you don’t mind that you are paying a quarter a minute for that magic.  I learned that I could shower head to toe and shave in 5 minutes or if you prefer,  $1.25 worth of water.  I learned that you quickly stop noticing body odor and feet smells and that hairy legs are nothing to fret about.  I started learning that my beauty is far deeper than my surface and mirror image.  I am (we are) beautiful because we have fun in the face of adversity and we see life as one giant adventure and we become masters of our destiny.  We spend our moments seeing, being, laughing, crying, and most of all accepting one another.

Unexpected blip # one million and ten was discovering that everything breaks in an RV of 6 people and a  dog.  Water pipes started leaking, roofs dripped when it rained, fans whirred loudly, metal blinds started falling down, cupboards stopped closing, doors stopped opening, handles didn’t want to turn, panel doors popped open and stayed open, automatic steps decided they were never going back in place, radios flashed blue lights at you all night, , and even though everything once had a place,  a few dirt roads later and bump bump bump they’ve all collided into a chaotic mess.
We also learned that gas is expensive, it’s easy to hit a parked car, and hugging the shoulder gets you pulled over in Kansas.
We quickly got the hang of things making up their own rules of engagement and adjusted accordingly.  We found that it was all laughable and that we were having fun in spite of malfunctions and breakdowns.
The boys named our RV Shadow Cruiser in memory of their beloved wiener dog that died last year.  And cruise we did.
We spent two nights in the Grand Canyon and were absolutely delighted at how easy it was to pull up and find a great camping spot.  We had perfect days, nice cool evenings, clean facilities, and even a shuttle stop right outside the campground that took us up and down the south rim of the Canyon.  On this trip we took our first stab at homeschooling and were happy to find that as we had suspected nature provides the perfect classroom for four eager and rambunctious boys.  Besides taking in all they could about the canyon, geological formations, and wildlife they also spent time earning their ranger badges and drawing artistic impressions of the canyon.  We were definitely off to a near perfect beginning.  There wasn’t a single RV dysfunction that could steal these moments from us.

Adam had this wish of riding all of the rides listed in Bicycling Magazine’s 50 best rides.  One ride in each state.  If you haven’t figured it out yet Adam often dreams bigger than reality.  So his request was to head to Moab, Utah after the Grand Canyon.  As we were driving to Moab I kept looking at pictures of Moab and I repeatedly had this nagging thought, “Geez, it looks really hot in that part of Utah.”  I finally decided it would be wise to look up the weather report and found that it was to be 100 degrees in Moab and kindly requested that we change destinations.  Although bummed Adam agreed that we had had enough of 100 degree temps so we immediately changed direction and headed to Colorado.  With a quick stop at the four corners, the nation’s lamest tourist trap, and with me at the wheel of the RV for the first time we safely arrived somewhere near Durango, CO.  Having arrived really late at night we didn’t have any idea what beauty we would wake up to.  Upon sunrise we were pleasantly surprised to see that we were parked up against a pristine Colorado lake with a nice, cool, breezy morning.  The boys spent the morning hiking around the lake and some of them took advantage of a rare opportunity to skinny dip.  I could look all the way across that lake and see little pale nudies gleaming in that glorious morning sun.  Our goal was to be in Ouray, CO in time for a children’s symphony being put on by the local opera house.  Adam drove the million dollar highway in to Ouray and I held my breath the entire way as it seemed the edge of the mountain was just a small nudge away.  The RV quickly taught us both that we are indeed grown ups and even grown up enough to handle a very large vehicle on crazy tight curves and high speeds.

Colorado was so absolutely perfect that I am without a doubt unable to complain about anything.  We loved our experience so much that we stayed 4 nights enjoying bike rides, hikes, throwing rocks in rivers and lakes, seeing teepees and yurtas, listening to the sounds of an orchestra, sitting in hot springs, and really experiencing a life that is unscheduled and free.
From Colorado we drove and drove and drove some more.  That meant we roasted, we stressed, we ate shitty food, we spent 100s of dollars on gas and learned a few more things about life in an RV.  One important life lesson for me was that I can indeed enjoy living a life that is not planned out.  Every night we drove without a destination in mind.  We let our bodies tell us when it was time to quit driving and then we picked a place to park and sleep.  One night we found ourselves in the middle of Kansas driving the dirt back roads of a wildlife preserve.  We found a spot, pulled over and slept.  And you know what?  It was fun.  It was liberating.  It served its purpose and we all survived!  Phew, I am learning to breathe and stress much less.
Another day or two of RV travels and we arrived at my mom’s house in IL.  Oh, a house, and hot food, and a shower, and a real toilet, and my own bed, and a glorious glorious washing machine.  We landed in a cornucopia of pleasurable things.  All simple.  All expected.  But no longer taken for granted.
Six or seven weeks pass and we decide it is time to hit the road again.  Find an adventure.  Yes, an adventure.  A northwest adventure with stops in Yellowstone, Glacier,Seattle, Portland, Vancouver and even Alaska.  We are so excited.  And then reason whispers in my ear…”gas, Amy.  Gas is so expensive.  This trip is going to be wearing, cold, and costly.  Do more research.”  I had enough sense to listen to reason and started pricing out airline tickets, vacation houses, etc, and sure enough reality knows of what it speaks.  Highs of 35 in Yellowstone.  Yuck.  Glacier mostly closed.  Shame.  Alaska unwise to drive.  Boo/Hiss.  And airline tickets with hotels 200 dollars more than driving for weeks.  Hmmmmmm.
Yes, being a family of reason we abandoned Shadow Cruiser for the easier alternatives of pilot flown jumbo jets and rental houses with maids and fridges.  And, yes, we felt horribly guilty leaving Shadow Cruiser clean and ready to go sitting in a Uhaul storage area.  Oh the shame (and by shame I mean relief).
That was the best decision we have made in awhile.  Thank you, Reason.  Our trip to the Pacific NW landed a job, a house, a school, and a new chapter in life.
2 weeks later Shadow Cruiser trekked us back across the country.  And this time he did it like a pro and so did we.  We have found a peace with one another.  An understanding.  Shadow Cruiser has taught us how to be better in this life.  He has shown us our true colors and has been a vital part of our journey both physically and emotionally.  In turn we have cared for him, fixed him, nurtured him and bargained with him.  He joins us now in Portland, sitting out front of our short term rental driving all the neighbors crazy with his large size and ugly looks but I don’t see the unsightly RV that they do.  I see a vehicle that houses our fears, has heard our tears, our laughter, has propelled us forward, helped us create memories, taught us life lessons, shares our dreams and is itching for another adventure.

Saying Goodbye to everyone and everything we loved in Tucson

Staycation in T-town

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Mark and I enjoyed a staycation this past weekend.  I think every person should try this out.  A staycation challenges you to experience your city in ways that you’ve been too busy to enjoy.

Since we are making an honest effort to go vegetarian (Amy) or only eat meats from local free range animals (Mark) and we are counting our calories we thought this weekend would be extremely disappointing and near impossible when it came to our food choices.  Instead of feeling deprived and challenged we were easily able to find little gems that we’ve been missing.

At Armitage we found a perfect fit on a Friday night for couples like us in their mid 30s.  We were able to lounge comfortably outside with a cool breeze left behind after the monsoon rains.  We smoked a cigar and drank a bottle of delicious Pinot Noir (that was normally $130 sold to us for $50) and nibbled on pita and hummus. Mark, in true fashion, ended up negotiating with the manager for their last 9 bottles at an even lower price.  Anyone want to come over for wine?  We snuggled on the outdoor couch while chatting and laughing about life and gave really lame attempts at making up life stories about the other diners seated around us.  It was a perfect Friday evening.

Old Man / Old Woman Dancing ShadowsWe then checked in at Westward Look Resort and Spa for a mere $62 per night.  While a little outdated, the property is flanked by the majestic mountains and deserts only found in Tucson.  We found it to be very comfortable and quiet.  The restaurant, Lookout Bar and Grille,  on Friday night was packed wall to wall with older people dancing and drinking.  We smiled with the thoughts of being 70 and still young at heart.  Dancing away the weekend night with the belief that our minds and bodies could still carry us like the teenagers we’ll believe ourselves to be.  It was quite beautiful.  One man in particular is forever imprinted in my memory of images.  He was probably in his late 60s dancing alone with his hands above his head, his eyes closed, and the music filling his being.  He was free and uninhibited.  Thank you for that gift, kind sir.  You have given me an image of the spirit I aspire to grasp as this aging process continues to wage it’s war against me.

Saturday led us to the Tohono Chul Tea Room.  Again in the middle of summer we were comfortable seated outside where we enjoyed the tastiest caprese salad, potato salad, and grass fed beef burger.  The scents, sounds, and sights of the sonoran desert were enough to counter the less than stellar service we had.

We spent the day shopping at Costco (we scored on angry birds for christmas gifts!) and La Encantada.  Running in to current and old friends because  Tucson really is a very large family.  We ended the evening at Ra.  Unfortunately Ra was the one place that let us down.  It felt like a meat market with subpar food, too loud of music and super poor service.  Maybe I am closer to being the old lady dancing at Westward Look than I am the young woman out to seduce!  Ha.

Sunday we opted to try Blue Willow.  This is my new favorite breakfast place in Tucson.  Enormous healthy options at a low cost.  Excellent service.  Diverse group of diners from families to hippies to UMC medical employees.  I had the vegetarian omelet.  It arrived with large chunks of brightly colored tomatoes, peppers, and mushrooms.  I so badly wanted to eat it all but because it was so large I only managed to make my way through half of it.  Mark asked our waitress about where the meat was purchased and she rattled off knowledge that made you just want to hug her for caring enough to educate herself.  She informed him that he would be able to eat the beef chorizo (Mark’s favorite breakfast dish) as the beef comes from a local farm that treats their cows with dignity and respect, grazing them on grass.  The chicken on the other hand comes from a mass US vendor.  While you wait for a table you can peruse the little boutique that sells everything from handmade metal fans to Star Wars gifts to cannabis cookbooks to quirky items that joke about sex and politics.  I even found the perfect gag gift for Mark called the freeloader fork.  For all of you who know Mark and what we like to call the “Mark’s Special” this fork extends up to 2 feet so he can eat off of anyone’s plate at the table!  LOL

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We spent the remainder of the day napping off our large breakfast and playing knockout in the hotel pool (I lost EVERY game!).  Or in a more positive sentence…Mark won EVERY game!  We soaked in the jacuzzi and read during the thunderstorm.

We finished the evening with dinner and brews at Harvest.  We are so glad we found this place for those times we are traveling to that far away land called Oro Valley.  We were able to drink $3 local drafts and chow down on sustainable foods that were cooked to perfection!  Everyone on staff was kind and talkative and again we were able to sit outside in the cool summer breeze absorbing the magnificent views of Pusch Ridge.  The backside of the Catalinas truly are perfectly etched and carved.

We also set out on a mission to fill our reusable cups at every vendor we chose to patron and were very pleased to discover that each one gladly filled our cups instead of using their non-recyclable to-go cups.  AJs even allowed us to get refill prices for the remainder of the day.  This is a simple way we can make our footprint smaller.  Find local restaurants.  Find sustainable restaurants.  And carry your own glass.
Even better, bike to each location.  This would’ve been a great addition to our weekend if I weren’t nursing a very painful bulging disc.  But Tucson is definitely the town to strap on your helmet, find one of the hundreds of bike paths and venture out to fun and adventure and greener living.  Now go out and vacation in your city.  Fall in love with the people and place you call home.  I know Tucson pulled me back in to her charm and beauty.  It just took a little bit of moving outside my box of familiars.

Next weekend we are out on a family adventure to enjoy the cooler weather and pine trees of our very own mountain just 30 minutes from home.   Let the Tucson adventures continue.

Photo Credits:
Old Man/Old Woman Dancing Shadows by siriusputsch on photobucket
The Freeloader Fork @ Amazon