New Year’s in Arizona

    To complete our tri-state trip, we flew to Phoenix, Arizona on Tuesday, December 28th. Many people asked, “Why Phoenix?” My aunt Brook (my dad’s sister) and her husband Chris live in Arizona, and my grandparents (my dad’s parents) are living in Phoenix for the winter. Sadly, we were unable to get the whole Lashbrook family together (we missed you GE and Janet, Travis and Shannon, Michael, Kristi, and Karina)!

    The first morning it was cool and cloudy, but we decided to go for a hike in the North mountain range. The North mountains are within walking distance of my aunt’s house. We started out with 3 dogs, my aunt, uncle, mom, dad, Jesse and I. When it started to sprinkle, my dad, Jesse, and I remained on the hike with one of the dogs.

    It felt amazing to be outside without a coat. I also loved the smell of grass and earth. It is amazing the smells that get covered by snow. My dad “thought” he knew the hike he went on with my aunt the day before. It turns out he was a little uncertain. We should have been circling back around one of the mountains, but we weren’t. Jesse had the bright idea to head up, so we could see our surroundings. He continued to go up and up until we determined we were on a trail to the top of the peak. A few times, the dog looked at us like we were crazy when we asked him to go through rocks and over the landscape. We called my aunt for guidance. She didn’t know where we were.

    Determined not to go back the way we came, we charted a course between two mountains. We eventually found the trail again and made it home. Using Google Map we were able to determine we were trying to go “around” the wrong mountain.

    "Let's go's an adventure, Andrea, right?"

    Our first evening we celebrated Christmas.

    The Boys (Jesse, Chris, Eric, Grandpa, Glen, and Barossa)
    The Girls (Alaina, Brook, me, Grandma, and Janet)
    Eric doing his job as Santa

    One thing the Lashbrooks always like to do when we are together is eat. During this trip, I set out to learn two of our famous family recipes. Brook and I made her homemade crescent rolls, and I finally wrote down the recipe for my grandma’s chicken and dumplings.

    Rolling out the dough (her's were prettier than mine...I guess what I tell my students is true about practice)
    Christmas Dinner (yes, this is #3 if you are counting)
    I recorded the recipe but it is really about the taste and feel...will I ever be able to replicate this?
    Making Mashed Potatoes (We don't look alike, do we?)

    The rest of the week was chilly for Phoenix, so we played lots of games and talked with our other family members over Skype.

    Favorite games: Monopoly Deal, Loaded Questions, Bananagrams, Aquire, and Ticket to Ride
    Hello, France! I have become a huge fan of Skype.

    My sister-in-law, Alaina, was in the middle of the Hunger Games book series. We didn’t see much of her!

    Every year over New Year’s, my aunt and uncle’s neighborhood throws a potluck block party. This year there was a live DJ. We danced, ate, remembered the old year and celebrated the New Year.

    Still in Love (5 years this summer!)

    Thanks Lashbrook family for a great New Year’s!

    2 thoughts on “New Year’s in Arizona

    1. I love when I make the blog (as long as it is good)! What I really love is spending time with you!!!
      Love you lots!

    2. Awwwww, we missed being all together too. It was at least good to talk on Skype though! About those dumplings, Andrea – you have to get in there a little more like Mamaw – you didn’t have ANY flour on your shirt! They are delicious – I wish I knew her secret about the texture of the raw dough too. Love you guys! Aunt Janet

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