Night Blooming Desert Beauty

Best of cactus The desert has many beautiful flowers.  Sometimes you have to look carefully and at the right time.   This is a photo of my neighbors Night Blooming Cereus.  By morning the bloom is closed, and will fall off in a few days.  To view some amazing studio photos of this flower check out Robert Fovell’s photos. 

There is more going on at night in the desert, and you can check it out at the Desert Botanical Gardens, evening program; Flashlight Tours.

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Keeping it clean

My brother lives in Alaska, a big difference from Arizona.  (we only visit him in August!) He has come out this way a few times, in January of course

.  His observation was that we sure do have clean cars in these parts.  He is right.  With average rainfall in Arizona at under 8 inches a year, we don’t exactly have to be worried about cleaning of the mud and muck.  We Arizonians do like our pretty cars.  Most full service car washes even come with a guarantee.  Two days, if it rains bring it back and get the outside washed for free at Arizona Auto Wash.  Be sure to print off your coupons before you head out and sign up on their contact page to get a free wash on your Birthday.  Lets keep it clean!  

 100_0923 (that’s my CRV getting all shiny)

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A great Race in Old Town Scottsdale

It was a great day in Old Town Scottsdale for a bike race. That’s my sweetie in the front of the pack. The temps were perfect, it was delightful sitting outside Fine’s Cellar in the shade and watch the racers fly by. The course was fast and demanding and the racers had a great day. Good news, no injuries. I like that! This was the second annual Cyclo de Mayo , a big thanks to Scott Delaune who worked so very hard putting this race on the past 2 years.

Cyclo de Mayo – Bicycle Race in downtown Scottsdale

My husband is a dedicated cyclist. You know, they guys out riding, even in the summer when it is over 110. He belongs to a team, Procon and this weekend they are having the second annual Cyclo de Mayo . It is a crit, meaning they ride multiple laps along the course. They will be in Old Town Scottsdale, riding a 1/2 mile course, with groups heading out to ride from 7am to 5pm. There will be a Kids Zone, with "moonbounce", Bike Rodeo, and Pinata party. Come out to join the riders, or watch the excitement. (these guys get moving, about 35mph on a bike). Register to ride with bikereg.com .

JP Pancakes

This morning I had breakfast at one of my favorite McCormick Ranch breakfast spots; JP Pancakes. Located in the Mountain View shopping plaza on the south east corner of Mountain View and Hayden Rd. It is a tiny spot, only 11 tables, and if you are looking to get in and out fast on a Sunday morning be there before 9am or plan on waiting. (the wait is worth it!) It is a no frills place, no fancy linens, just good food. The menu is not huge, and they only serve breakfast. A favorite of my family’s is the baked pancake, at least I think that is what they call it. I get the Banana Pecan. It is a cross between a pancake and a souffle. (yummy) It takes about 20 min to cook, so don’t dawdle when putting your order in, the coffee flows while you wait so bring good company and prepare to feast. If there are too many people ahead of you on the wait list, place your order and take it to go. Yup, breakfast to go. If you live too far just take the feast over to Mountain View Park, and have a picnic.

Scottsdale Public Library

I love the Library.  I know, it is a bit ‘old school’, all those dusty books and all; but the library is embracing technology and is a whole new place.  The Scottsdale Library has way more than just books these days.  You can check out Movies (lessening your dependence on Netflix and Blockbuster), books on tape/cd, music, language programs, down-loadable books (as part of the Greater Phoenix Digital Library) and so much more.  Come and use their computers and Internet, or bring your own computer and access the web using their free WiFi.  There are several different sizes of rooms available for meetings for residence and non residences as well.  They also offer lots of Computer Classes.  Oh, and they still have books you can check out as well!With 4 branches of the 

Scottsdale Public Library, the closest to McCormick Ranch is the Mustang Branch, on 90th Street.  Be sure to get your card, and log into the site, request your media and get an email when it has arrived to the branch of your choosing, also get email alerts when your materials are due back, or subscribe to their feeds on new items of interest.  See the library does has a new look.  They are still offering

youth programs, story times, after school homework help, literacy programs, and Arts and Culture programs.  Be sure to check it out!

Scottsdale’s Camelback Walk thru McCormick Ranch, a video tour

The Camelback Walk is a multi use path that meanders thru the parks, under roads, along the golf courses, lakes and communities of Scottsdale.  It was designed to support the water flow of a hundred year flood, creating for us the wonderful open spaces to enjoy.

Spring is in the air

Spring is here! Our first Daffodil is in bloom! I love this time of year. We have trees starting to bloom (not the greatest for allergy sufferers) flowers popping up, and everything starts growing like mad. It is also time for Spring Training. For baseball fans, it is one more joy of living here in Arizona.

Arizona is home of the Cactus League . The Cactus League has 12 major league baseball teams in their training schedule. Scottsdale’s Stadium is the spring training grounds of the San Francisco Giants who’s first game starts Feb 28th against the Chicago Cubs .

Going on in Scottsdale

Winter has arrived up north, the holidays are all over, and people are ready to come visit Scottsdale and Arizona.  I think January is one of our busiest months of the year.  Especially this year.

January 12 – 20th is the Barret Jackson car auction.
January 13th is the PF Chang’s Rock and Roll Marathon.
January 28 – February 3rd is the FBR Open, formerly known as the Phoenix Open.

and on the day the FBR ends we have Superbowl XLII Sunday February 3rd here in the Valley of the Sun.  With lots of parties and happenings in Scottsdale as well.  Be sure to check out the Guide for Superbowl week in Scottsdale, and the Scottsdale Events Calendar to be sure you catch all you can while here.

McCormick Ranch Wreath Kits from the POA

Christmas Wreath Kits from the McCormick Ranch Property Owners Association are now available. This is the 25th year the POA has been doing wreath kits. The kits are avilable starting on December 12th. All McCormick Ranch residents are invited to come by the Association office at 9248 N 94th Street (east of Pima Rd, South of Via Linda at the end of 94th Street on the west corner).

They provide the fresh cut juniper and pine as well as pine cones and the tube frame as well as instructions. Assembly is easy, well lets call it simple. Be sure to bring your gloves.

I got started with the basics and had a bare spot where I placed my pine cones. All I need now is a pretty red bow. Have fun, and get creative!