Carolina: Cruising Past 70: OLA: Loving Christmas around Viewpoint

Sunday, December 22, 2013

OLA: Loving Christmas around Viewpoint

a section of the 500,000 lights at a place in Phoenix, Arizona
the moon shining on  Christmas Tree Street
After finishing our own decorations for the Holidays, we drove around Viewpoint to see how the whole community is spruced up for the Holidays. The older streets featured common themes for the homes on them: cacti, Santas, bells, Christmas trees, reindeer, snowmen, gingerbread houses, etc. You must remember that all three types, park model homes, manufactured homes, and RV sites comprise Viewpoint. The Resort even has a red motorized train that takes people around to see the displays.  On December 14 there was a parade of decorated golf carts around the campground!

Christmas on golf carts parading in the desert
a tropical Christmas in the desert
However, unlike the campgrounds we had been in in the past there were not too many RVs that went out for fancy décor.  There were, however, simple but nice reminders of Christmas.  Lit palm trees were ubiquitous. In 2011 at Orlando Thousand Trails we found a sublime blue-inspired fifth wheel and in Yuma in 2012 we found a very colorful fully bedecked motorhome!
                                                                            When we had our fill inside the campground, we went out to find the best Christmas lights display of the Phoenix metropolitan area. I found an online map of those places, marked with how many lights were used in each place. We went to the two biggest ones, each of 500,000 lights, one in Mesa and the other in Gilbert, Arizona. Christmas is definitely in the air! And there are displays that are unique to this desert environment.
bright yellow poinsettias!
bright Cheesecake Factory
Shopping around Mesa, especially at the Superstition Springs Center Mall, is like shopping anywhere in the US. Hopping from store to store, I found several stocking stuffers for Bill (and he for me!). Wonderful décor also gave us more reason to be festive!  I even found yellow poinsettias on sale as much as the reds at all major groceries. And all the cakes are so festve this time of year. Then we found a Cheesecake Factory gift card from last year’s Christmas gifts that we had not used! So we were given a wonderful pre-Christmas dinner there after a hectic day of shopping!

the block party @ Wayne and Val's!
And, of course, our block had a Christmas party at Val and Wayne’s home at the campground. The couple had ham and potatoes for everybody. Bill and I brought Filipino style ambrosia for dessert. Carolyn and Mel brought nice apple salad, Bud and Bonnie lafsa (a Norwegian potato bread), and Chris and Bonnie the green beans casserole. Bill even came with a Christmas tie! The party was held a bit early because four of the five couples are going away to be with family this Christmas, including us! As a matter of fact, two couples were already gone: Clinky and Cam and Jim and Barb.
what Emmanuel means!
the fourth candle of Advent is lit!
In church, of course, the spirit of the season is very much in the air. Emmanuel means God is with us, written in bold letters as the fourth advent light is lit! Now we have to prepare for the Christmas meal!