I have to be honest...I was far less than eager to leave the lush, idyllic beach town that we lived in to move "here"...to the desert. I love seasons, love the crisp cold of a sunny winter day, the first fluffy snowfalls, the smell in the air after a summer thunderstorm, wading through leaves at Crane's Orchard to pick baskets of Golden Supreme and Honeycrisp apples, the sound of jet skies and boat engines skimming the surface of Lake Michigan, and so many other things that come along with the change of seasons, and life in the midwest. However, our family, along with many others, were forced to pick our family, and leave pretty much our whole world behind because of the changing economic climate. Simply put, we had to go where the work is. Of all the places we considered, I chose the West side of the country, because it's the only other place that I have family, in Arizona and California.
So, here we are, thus far we've tolerated 109 degree days (which I'm told is nothing compared to what's coming), driven through the mountains, the desert, and taken in all of the terrain, and to be honest, it was total culture shock. Almost as much so as traveling to another country. So different from any place I've ever lived or known. There have been days that I just refused to leave the house and wallowed in how much I hated it here...
But, it really has started to grow on me. It's insanely beautiful in it's way. Sunsets that West Michigan can only dream of, majestic shadows cast over red-rock mountains, saguaro, beryl, and ocotillo cactus, date palms and grapefruit trees, the soft smell of orange blossom in the evening, there really is so much beauty to be seen here in contrast with what we've known. Our favorite library is built on an incredible historic farm where we can check out books, wander through trails and paths, chase after roosters and peacocks, and then climb to the top of a grapefruit tree, tossing the biggest ones to the ground to be taken home for breakfast.
The kids tell me daily how much they love it here, and are even more crazed about it after realizing that their favorite Discovery Channel Show Survivorman (Les Stroud) filmed his pilot episode here in the Sonoran Desert. I'm so happy that we are all settling in and adapting to this new life and new adventure.
My adorable little cousin Hudson who is staying with us!