On the Road with Tom and Gloria travel blog

Spencer at Canyon Lake

Ready for Christmas!







Breakfast and "The Bears"


Owen had to work on Christmas Eve day so Spencer and I spent the day driving into Tonto National Forest. We got as far as Tortilla Flat. Spencer loved his first trip into the desert and enjoyed hearing the story of stage coach stops, building of Roosevelt Dam, and the Goldfield Ghost Mining Town.

We got to Owen's apartment by 4pm. After picking up the key to the apartment we rented for two days for Spencer and Colin , I started prepping the food for the celebration of Christmas Eve. Owen picked Colin up at the airport and by the time they arrived home everything was ready. We enjoyed our rice balls, caprese salad, cheese, salami, and olives.

There was still some wrapping of gifts happening on Christmas morning but eventually we got to pop the Champagne cork and delve into the sauerkraut balls, salmon plate, quiche, and crostini salvatore. Finally - the gift exchange - always fun and full of surprises.

For Christmas dinner Spencer prepared and grilled a fantastic prime beef tenderloin finished off with Owen's herb butter. Owen made roasted herb potatoes and I made asparagus vinaigrette. We asked Colin what was his contribution and he said " a rave review". Hysterical!

It was wonderful to see the boys take over and make such a lovely dinner. Quite frankly, I was pooped from making the appetizers for the holiday eve and morning. We had fruit, nuts, figs, chocolates and port for dessert. So many delicious flavors packed into two days.

I will not dwell on our thoughts and feelings about Dad not being with us. We believed he was there in spirit.

This morning we decided to go to Temple Bar - a local Irish pub that cheers on the Chicago Bears. I took a picture of the Paddy wagon because they actually use it to drive home anyone they feel is unable to operate a vehicle after visiting their bar. Great idea - great name.

Spencer left for cold and snowy Detroit in the early afternoon. The rest of us returned to Owen's sunny and warm apartment. After dinner, I came home to check on the RV, Colin is spending the night at Owen's. Tomorrow is an early day - we plan to take a drive to Sedona.

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