a bench with a view

a bench with a view

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Z'Tejas Southwestern Grill

A/Z - Sights and Sites of Arizona

Z -  Z'Tejas Southwestern Grill

And now we are at the end of A/Z.  What a wild month it has been.

I hope you have enjoyed visiting Arizona on my blog.

What better way to relax but with a delicious dinner at.......

Hubby had the peppercorn steak, choice of rib eye or fillet; hubby got fillet (delicious)

I had the Santa Fe chicken enchiladas (delicious)

They also serve cornbread as an appetizer. Proceeds from it go to different local charities. This month's was a Marine organization. It was only $3.00 for the cornbread and for a worthy cause, who could resist?

Every year when I finish the A/Z challenge I always "swear" "never again" but then I usually get the "bug" in me to do it again. We'll see if this is the last one I do or not, though over dinner tonight I did mention several ideas for letters for next year and hubby came up with a few ideas himself. I have to give him thanks, he is a big help with taking pictures, driving me here and there to get what I'm looking for, and helping me with those tough letters when I'm a bit stumped. 

I do thank all the visitors who came, but especially thank my faithful readers who read and commented daily. Thank you!!

I loved getting to know you more through questions you answered.

Now back to my regular posting schedule of about once a week. And boy do I have some stories to share.........

stay tuned!!!

Friday, April 29, 2016


A/Z  Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona

Y - Yarnell

This is a very sad one, but when I came up with the theme for A/Z, I always knew "Y" would be for Yarnell to honor those that protect others, always putting their own lives in danger. 

On June 30, 2013, 19 members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, part of the Prescott City Firefighters, lost their lives fighting a wildfire close to the city of Yarnell, trying to protect the city from the fire potentially destroying it.  There were 20 members of the crew; one was a lookout. He survived. Can you imagine the grief he must have felt? 

I was living in California at the time and I remember hearing about the tragedy on the news.  

It devastated the city of Prescott and surrounding areas.  Most people knew at least one of the hot shots, had gone to school with them, etc.  

I'm not sure exactly how it all happened, I've read stories.  I think this one is pretty comprehensive.

Yarnell is located between Prescott and Phoenix, but you take mountain (i.e. windy roads) to get there.  It is a pretty drive.

The temporary memorial.  There are plans for a bigger one down the line.

Words cannot describe seeing the display and seeing the loss of young lives.  The actual place where they lost their lives is on private land and not accessible to the public, which I think could be a good thing.

Nineteen fallen heroes.  

People to this day still have decals on their cars remembering the 19 and lots of houses in Prescott have a display honoring them with 19 flags.  One of the Wal-Marts there have a touching memorial to them with pictures of each of the hot shots that lost their lives. I always stopped for a moment to look at their pictures when we shopped there. 

But.....God does make beauty out of ashes, no matter how painful it can be and in the midst of tragedy and sadness, healing and love emerged......

A lady who was in New York City and deeply impacted by the events of 9/11/2001 as a World Trade Center survivor ended up in Prescott to heal.

A dad who lost his son in this tragic event of the Yarnell fire.

They met.

They fell in love.

The community helped them to heal.

They were married this past December 2015 at the courthouse in Prescott at the annual Christmas tree lighting.  

She said if she ever found her soul mate, she wanted to marry in public at a happy event like the tree lighting in front of a lot of people.  

I wish them many years of happiness.

God does make beautiful things........

Thursday, April 28, 2016


A/Z Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona

X - Xanterra

We all know how challenging the letters Q, X, and Z can be to try to get something for the A/Z challenge.  I'm always on the lookout for those hard letters.  This again could be a bit of a stretch, but it still is within the theme.

Xanterra is the company that handles all the commerce for the Grand Canyon. If you buy a souvenir, it will have a sticker on it from Xanterra, etc.  When we first went to the Grand Canyon years ago, it was the Fred Harvey Company. So obviously over time it changed owners.

And then of course all their vehicles would be appropriately marked.

Think you would like working at a national park? 

I think I would, as a seasonal worker like some hire for. It would be fun to be in the area and when not working have a chance to explore the park perhaps more in depth than just a "quick" visit to them.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wrigley Mansion

A/Z Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona

W - Wrigley Mansion

Wrigley Mansion was the winter cottage for William Wrigley, Jr of the Wrigley gum fame.  He built the house for a present for his wife for their 50th anniversary in the late 1920's.  Sadly, he lived in the house only one year before he died.  The Wrigley Family also had several other houses scattered across the country; I remember seeing one of them from the outside on Catalina Island in the Southern California area.

This is what it looks like; this is a painting of it.  It has four bedrooms.  Mr. Wrigley wanted it to be basically a family home, so that's why he didn't make a lot of guest rooms in it.  Guests would be invited to stay at the Biltmore Hotel right below the mansion at his expense for a period of time.  The four bedrooms were used one for he, one for his wife, and then the other bedroom for his son and wife, and the 4th for their children.

This piano is only one of two that were made back in the 1920's.  This particular one was "ahead of its time" in that the brown box behind the piano contained songs on rolls that were able to be put into the piano so that they could have like a disk change with a remote control to change music without having to get up and physically put a new roll on.  The other piano is located in the Smithsonian in Washington, DC. 

This is the switchboard operator room.  Not a good picture of the walls, but the walls were made out of silver wrapping from the gum.  Years later, there is a touch of mint smell still in the room.

The story of the owners. After the Wrigley family sold it, I'm not sure about the Talley Industries story, but when Western Savings Bank owned it, they used it a lot for executives to come and visit.  I guess there was some type of scandal with the Western Savings Bank and they lost the house.  The city was going to take it over and there was talk about tearing it down, but George Hormel (of Dinty Moore Stew fame) bought it and renovated it.  

Staircase going upstairs.

There are 11 fireplaces in the mansion and each are of a different design.

Another example of one.

Nowadays they converted the veranda into a restaurant with both outside and inside eating. As part of the tour we took, we could sign up to have a lunch there, which we did.  Very delicious food and reasonably priced. 

The tour was free and you could walk around the house afterwards for as long as you wanted.  

When the house was built, it was 6 miles out of the heart of Phoenix. Now it is basically in the middle of the city.  It holds weddings and is a popular place to eat.

Definitely a place to visit if in the Phoenix area. My advice. Valet park.  We didn't and the walk up to it was challenging with lots of steps.

Are you a gum chewer?

I'm not really; just once in awhile.  I do get irritated though when I'm doing my medical transcription work and I have a doctor dictating and you can hear them chomping on their gum.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Veteran's Hospital

A/Z Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona
V - Veterans Hospital

This is a view of the Veteran's Hospital located in Prescott.  To the right is the actual hospital.  To the left area small house looking buildings. They are part of what was Fort Whipple when Prescott was first being lived in.  You can take tours of Fort Whipple; we never did since they were opened just on Saturdays of the weekend and not Sundays and it was hard for us to remember to get there on Saturday for some strange reason. 

The view is pretty impressive too, don't you think? 

Monday, April 25, 2016

University of Phoenix Stadium

A/Z Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona

U - University of Phoenix Stadium

University of Phoenix Stadium is where the Arizona Cardinals play their football games, as well as a lot of other activities are held there.  We took a tour of the stadium and found out that the stadium in one way or another is used over 250 days a year for other sports playing, concerts, home improvement shows, etc.

This is where we waited to go into the stadium for the tour.

Another gate you can get in through.

The food court.

Looking inside the stadium.

The door where the field will be brought in (more about that below).

The sky roof (closed). It takes 20 minutes to open or close it.  If I remember correctly, the first time it will be opened for the year is in November and usually it isn't opened after April.

The field is brought in for the games.  Otherwise, it is maintained outside.  It takes 90 minutes to roll it in and out.

It was a very fascinating tour.  We went into the sky boxes which cost about $50,000 a year and that doesn't include parking for the game or food purchased.  

We went into the visiting team's locker room. The Arizona Cardinals, for whatever reason, do not want anyone other than the team in their locker rooms.

I can't remember exactly when the stadium was finished being built, but the reason it is called the University of Phoenix Stadium is because the University of Phoenix pays a certain amount of money every year and will do so to the stadium for I think 20 years to have the right to have the stadium called the University of Phoenix.

We took the tour last July 2015, so I'm a bit rusty on the facts of the tour, but it was very interesting and I would recommend it highly if ever in Phoenix.

What is your favorite sport?

Mine is a mixture of football and basketball.  

Saturday, April 23, 2016


A/Z Theme - Sights and Sites of Arizona

T - Tasting

Arizona has several wineries; its main place to grow grapes is in the southern part of the state close to Tucson, but there are tasting rooms located all over Arizona, especially in tourist cities like Sedona, Cottonwood, and Jerome.  

Hubby and me enjoy tasting and drinking wine so if we are in a location where there is a tasting room, we will go in and sample the wine, and usually end up buying a bottle or two to take home with us.

I thought I would mention how the tasting works in case anyone is not familiar with it.

Like the sign says below, the first step is selecting a flight.  Not sure where the word came from in this regard, but a flight of wine can be anywhere from 4-6 different types of wine.  They will break them up with red, white, or offer a combination of red and white wine.  

At the tasting room, whoever is serving or helping you will pour less than an ounce of wine into your glass and tell you a little about the wine you are tasting; what grapes it came from, etc.  You work your way up the wines in the flight and then of course their objective is for you to buy some to take home with you.

Hubby and me will usually get a flight each; usually I'll do the white wines and he the red wines.  We then sample each others and then rate the wines on taste, etc.  

Most tasting rooms will include the glass you sampled the wine in.  We have a few from the different wineries/tasting rooms we have been at.  They are smaller than the regular size glass, but we usually use them when we have wine with dinner.

What is your favorite thing made out of grapes?