Liza took the day off work so that we could have an entire day together. She had big plans and kept us going all day long and I mean all day long! Too much fun. At 8 in the morning, we dropped Buddy off at his internship downtown Phoenix. He works in one of the "tall" buildings. I was quite shocked to find this little home smack dab in the middle of downtown Phoenix, in a lot that has been cleared all around it for development. I said, "Look! It's the UP house!" (The kids movie where the old man won't sell the home that he and his wife owned forever and he didn't want to leave her memories when they developed a city all around it.) It made me sort of sad to see this home and think that possibly someone had a real life situation just like that. I can't believe downtown Phoenix. It's a very pretty city, very clean. And it has an Up house. Note: This photo was taken in the parking lot of Buddy's building. There are skyscrapers all around, I just couldn't get to the other side to take the shot with them in the background.
After dropping Buddy off, we headed to the bank where Liza works so that she could introduce me to her co-workers. She's told me that it's in a very elite area of Phoenix, but seriously? It's a beauuuutiful bank!! Liza works in the branch that is on the grounds of the corporate offices and wow! That's all I can say. Lovely. Her co-workers were very kind and friendly. I'm so glad to know that she has a place of employment that she can enjoy!
From there, we went to Arizona Mills, I think? It's a street of eclectic shops and stores with a heritage feeling. Awesome! Then we went to a huge outdoor mall that had everything from Nordstrom to Baby Gap. We had a ball shopping and laughing at anything and everything along the way. It felt so good to laugh with my girl! We found a candy shop with candies from when I was a child and had to try that and also we discovered "glow in the dark" nail polish, which we bought and made plans for pedicures later in the day. I loved going to the World Market, which Marilyn introduced me to a few years ago. There, I bought the worlds smallest vase which will be perfect for putting the dandelions that ZJ picks for me all summer. Cute.
After shopping for a few hours, we picked Buddy up and drove out to Chandler for a very late lunch at Cheesecake Factory. We were able to eat outside on their covered patio and it was a perfect afternoon for eating outdoors and listening to Jason Mraz. Lovely!
We headed home and then got ready for some poolside card playing. We played hand and foot and traded seats with each round so that we could be evenly exposed to the sunshine. It was so nice out! We didn't get into the pool, but we did dangle our toes for a bit while we chatted some more. Buddy was taking a nap inside, so we were in no hurry to come inside, especially since we'd had such a late lunch.
Buddy had a Stake Bishopric Training Meeting at 7, so we dropped him off at the Stake Center, then Liza took me to a fabulous walking park. It has a half mile loop around this beautiful man-made lake. There were ducks and tons of people walking dogs and playing frisbee. Beautiful. It was right at sunset, so it was the perfect temperature for a nice walk.
When we got back home, we had our little pedicure party, painting our toenails a glow in the dark pink, while watching an old favorite movie, Yentl. (I know, everyone hates Yentl, but we love Barbra Streisand!) Once our toes were dry, we went into the bathroom and sat in the dark on the edge of the tub, wiggling our glowing toes and laughing. (It doesn't take much to entertain us!) We couldn't wait for Buddy to come home so that we could show him. He wasn't nearly as excited as we were. Imagine that. ;) Here's my attempt at taking pictures of our toes in the dark...you can see some little blotches on the screen...those are toes. Don't they look like happy toes!?
Since we'd had such a late lunch, it was their dinner time at about 9:30. I ate an apple and called it good. We talked some more and called it a day. Liza and Buddy went to bed and I watched Dancing with the Stars on my laptop until I fell asleep. A very very good day, indeed.
In the meantime, at home... the kids are spending the days with the B's. WENDY IS A SAINT!!! They go home as soon as Doug is home from work. ZJ called about fifteen times last night. One call was to tell me that she wished she had some pie. I said, "Why don't you make one?" (I knew that there was a graham cracker crust in the cupboard.) So, a bit later, she called again to tell me that she'd made a banana strawberry cream pie. She was quite proud of herself! She also told me that she'd read my entire blog at Aunt Wendy's house. She said that since Taylor and Aunt Carol and I were making up phobias, she'd made one up too. Quayd got sand in his hair after playing and she said he had "Sandruff"!
This morning, when ZJ called, Quayd sounded like he woke up on the wrong side of the bed and I told him so. A few minutes later, he called and said that he'd gone back to bed and this time, he woke up on the right side. HA! Gracie shared that she'd made ribbon eggs at Young Womens last night and she can't wait for me to come home so that she can make some more! It was then that it hit me that I've left their Easter stuff all prepared but hadn't thought about coloring eggs. I'll have to leave instructions for that with Doug. (Oh, my poor kitchen.)
Carol and I chatted last night for a bit and changed our plans a bit. We'll not be getting together to go to our friends, the Burbanks', until Friday now. This gives me one extra night with Liza and Buddy. Their cute, fun friends, Chris and Liz had texted last night, wanting to get together again before I go, so this will allow for another fun night with them! It works for me!
Today, Liza's at work. I'll spend the day reading by the pool, taking a couple walks and then getting ready to go to the Mesa LDS Temple and then to attend the Easter Pageant that is held on the temple grounds. Carol went last night and said that it is magnificent! Happiness, to be here for this event!
It's obvious, I'm having a great time, but there's not too many minutes in between my thoughts of home and kids and Doug. This little break is really a shot in the arm for me. I keep telling myself that it's good to be apart, it boosts the appreciation level! I think it's even working both ways! ;)
Wise parents must weigh when children are ready to begin exercising their own agency in a particular area of their lives...If parents hold on to all decision-making power and see it as their ‘right,’ they severely limit the growth and development of their children. Elder Larry Wilson, LDS General Conference, April 2012