May you always walk in sunshine. May you never want for more.
Chicago winters are paralyzing to one's wellbeing and state of happiness. So Jimmyredhed and I got the eff out! We beat our winter blues with travel and this year has been no exception:: Nashville in December, Cleveland in January and New Mexico in February! Neither of us had visited the southwest before, but we landed in El Paso on Friday. We were greeted by our friends, Paul and Julie, and quickly set off for a most relaxing weekend of friends, tons of food, sunshine, and restoration.
|Paul and Julie at Happy Belly Deli|
Chatting with Paul (and now Julie) never ceases to inspire us. They're the friends who, after ending a conversation, leave you feeling like a better person (and a worse person . . . but that's another story!). They proved to be the best tour guides possible, introduced us to a wide array of southwestern culture.
|Jimmyredhed and I at La Vina|
Friday afternoon brought a lovely drive through pecan orchards (bare right now) and a wine tasting at La Vina Winery where I drank some of the most delicious sweet wines. We ate at a most historic little place called Chopas -- opened when the town was still part of Mexico. On Saturday, we took a stroll through the Las Cruces' Craft and Farmers market. How sweet it was to browse and not sell! We ate fantastic muffins from a Mennonite bakery and I had an egg and hummus sandwich at a new cafe on the walk.
We headed to Truth or Consequences where we stopped at the Happy Belly Deli before driving out to a few ghost towns near the Gila. We spent a few hours in Chloride, a town that now boasts nine residents after having boomed at 3,000 around the turn of the last century.
|Jimmyredhed and I in Chloride, NM|
|Abandoned house in Chloride, NM|
|Side of same house in Chloride|
Our night ended in Truth or Consequences with an hour long soak in the hot springs and delicious pizza.
We got to see chickens on Sunday while touring the coop of close friends after walking around Mesilla. Then we headed out to White Sands National Monument to take in sunset on the dunes. Never were we expecting a sand storm which seriously felt like a 72 degree blizzard! We ended up heading back early and stopping at SB's Late Night Lunch Box where I had a fantastic tomato and dill 'wich and we colored in coloring books.
|White Sands National Monument|
I can't really tell you how amazing it was to sleep on a sun porch, wear dresses and sandals, honest-to-goodness relax for four days. We needed needed needed it.
On the flight home, we drew circles around all the cities we want to visit this year.
That is all.