“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.” ~ Psalm 19:1
“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.” ~ Psalm 19:1
We all had to take a break whether we wanted to or not – at home.
Because of the pandemic and the resulting edicts to “shelter in place,” all of us, in one way or another, were forced to take a break.
Oh, I know, those who were fortunate enough to retain their jobs because they were deemed essential workers still worked hard and we’re so thankful for them. And scads of others, who were able, worked from home.
But a vast majority of us took a break – albeit a longer one than we thought it would be – from the daily routine and normal life.
Since both Papa and I are basically retired, we didn’t have to worry about jobs. We were busy though caring for our oldest granddaughter during that time.
But for the most part, we seized the opportunity to step away from the normal busyness of life and enjoy our time at home. And we didn’t squander that time at all.
“The opportunity to step away from everything and take a break is something that shouldn’t be squandered.” ~Harper Reed
So what did we do? In between playing with our granddaughter, helping her with her preschool homework, and providing new things to discover and learn, we enjoyed some simple aspects of life. And I took quite a few photographs to prove it.
I’m sharing some of those photos from our “break” with you today. Despite the trying time that it’s been, we managed to find joy. And doesn’t that make every day worthwhile?
So how have you managed staying home during this time?
“Find what brings you joy and go there.” ~Jan Phillips
I grew up enjoying cars and car rides. My father traveled daily by car around his multi-county territory for his job as a newspaper circulation supervisor. No company cars provided, he used our family vehicle which tallied a lot of miles on our car in a year. So Dad almost always traded our car in for a sparkling new one every two years.
It was always exhilarating when Dad arrived home from work one day driving a brand new car up our driveway. Immediately, we would hop in for a ride in the new one and I so vividly remember that “new car smell.”
Dad liked cars and he even kept a list of all the cars he ever owned which we found shortly after he passed away at the age of 90. That list was fairly long!
Papa and I certainly don’t adhere to the two-year trade-in routine that my father did during his working career. Instead, we hang on to our vehicles as long as possible – even 10-12 years. But no other purchases quite beat the excitement of obtaining a new car or a new to you car for me.
The car I enjoyed owning the most was a new 1981 Audi 5000 that hubby and I purchased when he was still a military officer. Boy, that car was fun to drive! Now, I’m just happy with our all-wheel drive Subaru Foresters that easily transport us up a wind-blown, drifted shut, snowy driveway every winter.
Yesterday I posted about a classic car show, our brother-in-law, Papa, and I attended in Arizona when we were visiting there.
It was a fun blast from the past and just in case you enjoy a walk down memory lane like I do, I’m posting some more photos I took there.
And last but not least, one of my personal favorites – traveling with God’s Holy Word in the front seat.
“People who, like me, grew up in the 1950s and 1960s after World War II, grew up with cars.” ~ Martin Winterkorn (former Volkswagen AG Chairman)
If you ever plan to motor west,
Travel my way, take the highway that is best.
Get your kicks on Route Sixty-Six.
(Lyrics to Get Your Kicks on Route 66 by Bobby Troup)
The second time proved to be just as relaxing and entertaining as the first.
When Papa and I journeyed to Arizona for the first time two years ago, we flew into Las Vegas, Nevada where our southwestern family members picked us up and drove us south to their home.
The rest of our time spent sightseeing we traveled by car (road trips are the best in my book!) and one day we enjoyed a scenic drive on old Route 66 to Oatman.
Just a couple of months ago on our second trip to Arizona, we flew into Phoenix, secured a rental car, and explored parts of the state on road trips. Yesterday, I posted about our leisurely and pleasant drive on old Route 66 again, only this time from Williams to Kingman.
Today I’m sharing some of my photos of the stops we made and sights we viewed along the way when we were getting our kicks on Route 66.
“The freedom of the open road is seductive, serendipitous and absolutely liberating.” ~ Aaron Lauritsen
Now that we’re opening up a bit and not sheltering in place by staying at home, I’m looking forward to more road trips in the near future. I used to love to fly, but in the last few years, I enjoy it less and less.
Obviously, you can get from point A to point B much more quickly by boarding a jet but for me, there’s just something way more enjoyable about packing up the car and setting out for destinations by highway and byway. You can view the most interesting sights and stop whenever and wherever you choose and I enjoy that so much more.
Maybe it’s because when I was young, my father used to take my mother and me on Sunday afternoon drives and I have such fond memories of that. Or maybe it’s just that I like the peaceful, quiet aspect of a car trip consisting of just hubby and me and an open road when we can pick and choose where to go, how far to go, and where we want to stop and check out the scenery.
Back in early March before the stay at home mandates were issued, which seems like an eternity ago, Papa and I flew to Arizona to visit family. Upon arrival at the Phoenix airport, we picked up a rental car and hit the road northward for our Grand Canyon visit.
The day we left the southern rim of the Grand Canyon, rain poured from the overcast, foggy sky. We headed south to Williams, AZ where we could catch an intersecting highway traveling west. But instead of entering the interstate in Williams, we opted to drive westward on old Route 66.
With each mile on this less traveled two-lane byway, we encountered blue skies, sunshine, and warmer temperatures. Just what we needed! As an added bonus, Burma Shave signs along the road kept us amused.
What a fantastic way to spend the day it proved to be! As we traveled along, enjoying beautifully different scenery and stopping in quirky and interesting little towns, I couldn’t help but remember an old song, Get Your Kicks on Route 66, written in 1946 by musician Bobby Troup. (Click on his name to watch/hear him perform the song.)
We surely did “get our kicks” traveling this mostly empty stretch of pavement. And eventually, my mind rolled back to an early 60’s television show, entitled Route 66, which I recall watching with my dad.
That show may have appealed to Dad, who enjoyed driving and traveling by car, because two characters, played by Martin Milner and George Maharis, wandered across the United States driving a Chevrolet Corvette along Route 66. Imagine my surprise as Papa and I were traveling on this remaining section of the old, historic highway when we saw a number of Corvettes coming towards us. Serendipity!
The original Route 66 highway extended from Chicago to Los Angeles, passing through America’s heartland (an area you pass OVER when you’re flying). We stayed on Route 66, which first opened in 1926 and was decommissioned by the 1980’s when newer, larger highways took its place, all the way into Kingman, AZ.
The trip proved refreshing and fun and we delighted in every mile of the way.
“Look for chances to take the less-traveled roads. There are no wrong turns.” — Susan Magsamen
I bring this offering to you today to brighten your world.
Several of these bloom right off my front porch.
They are of the most beautiful bluish purple persuasion.
They are one of the reasons I welcome the season called spring.
Those delicate petals exude the most luxurious scent.
And I wish you could delight in their delicious aroma.
They are hyacinths. One of my favorite spring time flowers.
“Man needs bread and hyacinths: one to feed the body, and one to feed the soul.” ~ Sharon Creech
“A man practices the art of adventure when he breaks the chain of routine and renews his life through reading new books, traveling to new places, making new friends, taking up new hobbies, and adopting new viewpoints.” ~ Wilferd Peterson
I’m longing for spring. I’m longing for color in my world.
Green. In the expanse of grass on our lawn. In the leaves budding forth on the trees.
Purple. In the first crocuses of the season that pop up through the soil.
Yellow. In the daffodils that peek their sunny faces through the shrubs around our house.
Pink. In the aromatic hyacinths that make the air smell so sweet.
Red. In the perky tulips that make me smile.
And if spring won’t cooperate and arrive soon, I’ll have to find those colors in these photos of beautiful Tiffany glass artwork on display at the Carnegie Museum of Art.
For me, they are a complete picture of spring.
“Some days seem to fit together like a stained glass window. A hundred little pieces of different color and mood that, when combined, create a complete picture.” ~ Maggie Stiefvater
On our recent jaunt to the city to escape the throes of winter doldrums and cabin fever, Papa and I visited the Carnegie Museum of Natural History and Art. You can read about that in yesterday’s post.
I’ve learned over the years that I am a very visual person. Pictures, photographs, images often provide inspiration for me. So when my visual world is colorless and drab (like it is now), creativity sparks just don’t fire in my brain.
That changed once I stepped into this mirrored room in the Hillman Hall of Minerals and Gems at the Carnegie museum. Perched on glass shelves inside of octagonal-shaped, glass curios lined up and reflected by lights and wall-to-wall mirrors, the gems and minerals displayed there lit up my brain like a Christmas tree.
I wanted to stay in that room for a long time just gazing at the astonishing beauty of it all and capturing photos with my camera. The optical illusion of it all felt like you were wandering through a maze, making you, perhaps, feel a bit like Alice trapped in the looking glass.
Glimmer, shimmer, and magical, it was almost like a siren song, calling out to me and uplifting my weary, dreary spirit.
Happiness is where you find it. Sometimes you just have to look for it. And for me, I found it here.
“There are little gems around us that can hold glimmers of inspiration.” ~ Richelle Mead