Friday, October 19, 2012

Hello From Arizona

It's been quite some time since I posted last and a "lot of water has passed under the bridge", as they say.

We moved to Arizona in the middle of August - temps were between 115 and 119 degrees when we got here.   We stayed in a motel for 10 days until our house was completed, so spent a lot of time in the room, inside air-conditioned stores, in the air-conditioned car, etc...  you get the idea!   Was like a furnace blast when you walked out the door.  You better believe we asked ourselves over and over, "did we do the right thing?".    We're loving it now however, it's cooled off into the 90's and now very pleasant and enjoying the wonderful sunshine every day - no sweatshirts on, etc. like it is now up in Washington state where we moved from.

We've moved into a 55-plus community called Province, in Maricopa, Arizona.  There are approximately 1100+ homes here now that have been sold, and room for about 1100 more.   In fact there are 4 new houses being built on our side of the street at the present time.   There is a 33,000 sq. ft clubhouse with all the activities you'd ever want - huge outdoor swimming pool and a lap pool inside, lots of exercise rooms, craft rooms, cards, town hall for big banquets/dances, etc.

There were many funny (or sad) anecdotes over the moving period, but one we're still laughing about is:  I put the "important" keys to the upright freezer, hubby's rollabout Craftsman tool chest, a custom-built gun display case for an antique shotgun of my days, and other keys, in a ziploc bag and put it somewhere safe where we could get to it right away when we got here.  In other words, we carried it down in our loaded mini-van for that reason.  Well.........we've never found the keys, yet anyway.   The freezer was fairly easy to open - just put a putty knife between the rubber stripping around the door and lifted up and it opened - same with the gun cabinet.   BUT, the toolchest that was another story.  We looked online and found Sears and other places do sell replacement keys, but this chest is about 12 years old - no longer made and no keys available anywhere.  We went to a locksmith and they had the key blank and made a key - brought it home and it was pretty difficult to get in the keyhole and then hard to turn, so hubby put pliers to the key, turned and broke off the key in the lock!   We found on the internet, a diagram of the locking system of the chest, so he started drilling about 2 to 3-inch holes in the back of the chest to reach in to twist lock mechanisms.  There were several of them so he has 4 big holes on the back of the chest.  But he got it open, so all is well there. We had gotten some red masking tape for something else, but it worked great to cover up the holes (matched the toolchest).

It's been fun decorating and not so fun trying to figure out where to put everything.  Most everything is done except for my office/craft room.  I don't have as much storage space, so having to buy several more bookshelves to store supplies on.

We've met quite a few of the neighbors, at least the ones who are full-timers.  Most of the "snowbirds" aren't here yet.  Everyone is very friendly.   We have both joined the community Golf Club - Keith plays every week and I'll be joining him to play Couples Golf, also once a week.  Couples is in the "twilight hours" somewhere around 3pm (when it's still quite hot for most people, but cheaper rates), followed by dinner afterwards.   A lot of my aches and pains in my shoulder, hip, knee and foot have gone away and I'm getting around pretty good now.

We miss our friends and families up in Washington state, but are happy here and enjoying being able to be outside a whole lot more.

I might add, that with all this sunshine and water, most of the plants have doubled in size since these pictures were taken.  The tree in the foreground is a lemon, and back in the middle is an orange tree.  Guess it'll be another year or maybe two before they bear fruit.

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