Riding high


There were many years, for one reason or another, instead of a summer vacation, I had a “staycation.’ (not that the word existed way back then)

As you know, a staycation is a period when a family stays homes and participates in leisure activities within driving distance during the day and sleeps in their own bed at night.


. balloons 300

I was fortunate to be living in an area that hosted a hot air balloon festival every year, somewhere between Memorial Day and Fourth of July. What a fun staycation a balloon festival was for me and many families.


Las Vegas .. balloons 298


Balloons 2011 090Las Vegas .. balloons 285 (1)

It is all about these beautiful balloons  lifting off twice a day, weather permitting.

In between, there were tethered balloon rides, kids play area, games, food and drinks. There was live entertainment during the day and music concerts in the evenings.

Something for everyone.

Early risers were rewarded with a beautiful sight of maybe a hundred balloons dotting the sky, sailing over homes where many were still sleeping.


Las Vegas .. balloons 299



Balloons 2011 029





Balloons 2011 078


Las Vegas .. balloons 285 (2)


Balloons 2011 043


And again a couple of hours before dark, cars would line the highways as their occupants anticipated the balloons lifting off and passing over them.

Some balloons might land in the yards of neighborhoods as far as 10 miles away. The wind determined the direction the chaser trucks would go to pick up the balloon and balloonists once they were on the ground again.

Yep I was one of those with my camera handy and have been known to follow a balloon I saw close to the ground.


Las Vegas .. balloons 267

Las Vegas .. balloons 268

Although I’ve never been up in one, a staycation at the balloon festival was a wonderful way to have that vacation feeling and the fun was riding high.

Las Vegas .. balloons 271 (1)


North to Alaska

House tours. I can’t get enough of them.

When I can’t get there, a virtual tour works just as well.

I was reading the definition of virtual—–very close to being something without actually being it.

That makes a virtual tour……almost real.

When I learned someone I love dearly was moving to Alaska, and after thinking how far away it was and how much I would miss her,  my thinking went to  “I wonder what  the real estate is like there?”

Isn’t she a beautiful little missy or Mrs. now?


SO ………..House touring in Alaska we go.

Virtually of course.

Because I want to see the current trends, I’m looking under new construction

Isn’t this a cute little place, well not so little………3382 square feet…on an acre of land.

It has 4 bedrooms and 3 baths…

Let the tour begin.






I don’t like a lot of conversation when I’m touring. I can look better when it’s quiet.

and the basement

A beautiful home that could be in my neighborhood or a lot of neighborhoods in the lower 48 ………..until you see the views. Not my neighborhood at all.

Maybe one day I will get to visit my sweet girl and see her and the views in reality instead of virtual.  And a virtual hug is no where close to being a real hug.


Historical always gets my attention.

Nothing gets my attention more than a sign that says “Welcome to Historical  (name of town)

Now sometimes I have to look extra hard to find the historical, but usually I can spot something that captures my interest.

The real gems  are found in the smaller towns.

And it’s usually worth getting off the beaten path to go exploring, if time permits. It is seldom disappointing.

Continue reading