It was $30 each which comes out to $210 for our family. No discounts for the kids either.Most of the crew would not have been very interested in the tour, and those that were did not feel good about leaving the other parent with all the little kids for so long in the parking lot.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
Saturday, January 29, 2011
It’s a very quaint town resting quietly along old Route 66 in the middle of the Arizona mountains, and from the looks of it, it hasn’t changed much since the time that Clark Gable and Carole Lombard spent their honeymoon night in it’s little hotel. The ride through the twisting, turning mountain roads is enough to make the trip into Oatman worthwhile, though I don’t believe I would want to take an RV or over sided vehicle through those turns too often. But the ride is not the best part of this trip.
The best part of this Family Friendly Freebee is that the donkeys that roam the streets are extremely friendly and love to be petted and fed. Bring a bag of carrots with you if you plan on making this trip. (Or, if you choose to spend the money, there are stores that also sell bags of donkey food for a mere $1 a bag.) The donkeys eat right out of your hand and will bring you ample opportunities for Kodak moments. Even the littlest baby burros enjoy the human attention, but don’t feed them. In fact, the town is so careful of it’s tiny donkeys, that they put little stickers on their foreheads warning you not to feed them. But they do love the snuggles and your family will love the experience.
Check out the town on it’s website before you head there though. They seem to have some of the most interesting things going on in town. They put on a gunfight in the main street a couple of times a day and while we were there, the town was preparing for it’s big “Bed Race”. It seems this town has quite a sense of humor and you wouldn’t want to miss any of the fun. For our family, the ride through the mountains on the Old Mother Road was too much fun. And the donkeys roaming the streets were a huge 5 thumbs up from the Martin boys.
Friday, January 28, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Natural surroundings - 7 - Great view of the San Francisco Mountain peaks, a few trees on the sites. Interstate 40 close by but we could not hear anything.
Natural surroundings - 6 - A few trees and some decent views of mountains. Interstate and train are nearby but not overly loud.
Monday, January 24, 2011
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Saturday, January 22, 2011
Nearby attractions - 7 - Very close to Montezuma Castle and Sedona. Flagstaff less than an hour away.
Natural surroundings - 8 - Great mountains all around. Interstate very close by.
Friday, January 21, 2011
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Just to let you know right up front, this post is one great big advertisement. I am not ashamed of it, nor will I apologize. This place is just too good to keep to myself.
Out of all the foods that I serve to my children, the one thing that every single person in our family enjoys eating is pizza. So, last night, when our family decided to meet another family that is currently living on the road and my husband suggested a pizza parlor we all agreed. The place he picked is a place in Phoenix, Arizona called The Organ Stop Pizza.
Now, I had never heard of this place, but my husband told me that they had a big pipe organ that they played while you ate. I had visions of an old pizza place I used to go to when I was a kid called Shakey’s Pizza. They used to play a player piano as you dined. My fond childhood memories did not prepare me for what awaited my eyes. First of all, this place was two stories tall. Second, the entire dining room was covered with musical instruments. They were mounted on the walls, ceilings, and even balcony railings. As I stood looking around the room, I wondered where the organ was. There were pipes running all over the place, but the actual organ itself was not in evidence. Then, we sat down and I looked through the window at the front of the room.
The room beyond the window was filled with large padded boxes. As my gaze traveled higher along the windows I saw pipes. Massive pipes, tiney pipes and every size in between. Then looked back around the restaurant, I realized that this entire dining room was one massive instrument and we were sitting right in the middle of it. I figured they must hire someone to walk into the windowed room and play the organ while we ate. The only thing I couldn‘t see was the actual keyboard for the organ.
Finally, after waiting about 10 minutes, I saw a little man walk through a door near the organ room and I got the boys ready to listen to some fun music. Suddenly, I saw the padded boxes in the window begin to quiver and shake. They were the bellows pumping air into the massive organ. The lights began to dim and the opening bars of “Oh Canada” began to play as a Canadian flag was dropped from the ceiling. A gorgeous organ rose up out of the center of the stage. Then the song switched to our National Anthem, the American flag was flown and the lights blazed forth as we all stood with our hands over our hearts and spot lights lit up Old Glory. I had to choke back a few tears as the sound swelled around me.
As the rest of the evening continued, I just sat amazed. Most of the time, it sounded like we were listening to an entire band. If the organ played a march, the drums mounted on the walls started playing along. There were bells, cymbals and even xylophones that came to life and started to play. From time to time, there were also other little surprises along with the music, for instance, the enormous disco ball hanging in the center of the room lit up and began to spin, and they blew bubbles from the ceiling during the song from Little Mermaid. My little boys favorite was when the stage curtain came up and little cat puppets were dancing along to the song that was being played.
But, one of the most amazing things to my family was the fact that they were allowed to make requests for certain songs. So, which song did my family pick? Well, I’ll tell you the theme song from Sponge Bob Square Pants was their second choice, but the ultimate first choice was…..Star Wars. So, it was with joy filled hearts that we listened to the first few notes of the Star Wars Theme Song. As the organist played through each of the musical themes of the show, my little boys’ eyes opened bigger and bigger, until finally one of them exclaimed, “Mommy, he even knows the Darth Vader song!” Oh Joy! Oh Rapture! OK, so maybe you aren’t a big Star Wars fan, but I have to say that sitting there feeling the very walls vibrate with the sounds coming from all around you, you can’t help but get caught up in the moment. The only thing that would have been better for me is if he would have played the opening theme song from The Phantom of the Opera. Oooohhh, I get chills just thinking about it.
Now, I do have to admit that the idea of meeting a new family and getting to know each other over pizza was a little bit hampered by the fact that none of us could hear each other, but it was definitely an experience that we all enjoyed. However, we remedied our inability to speak by going into the parking lot and talking inside Howard our RV for a little while. So, if you are ever in Phoenix, you have got to check this place out, but don’t plan on doing much talking while you are there. Just sit back, eat, and enjoy the music.
To check out more about our fellow traveling friends with triplet teens check out their blog - The Coast to Coast Trips! Thanks to their daughter Kimberly for these great photos!
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Staff - 9 - Very nice folks who did not get mad when we decided to stay an extra day and forgot to pay!
Natural surroundings - 9 - Amazing views, lot of birds and trees and cacti. A good 20 minutes from the edge of Tucson. Good and bad.
Monday, January 17, 2011
Sunday, January 16, 2011
Another state means another McDonald's in our 50 state quest. This stop was in Tucson. For some reason this area of Arizona has a resort town feel. A little like Orlando. Maybe it's the palm trees or the spring like weather in the middle of January. It also is fairly well kept and groomed, and this McDonald's was no exception to the Tucson standard. A nice new restaurant with a nice playland and free wifi. We had some internet work to do so the boys played while Patsy wrote and posted to her blog. We did have some screaming children to deal with at first, and this spilled over into the behavior of one of our guys, but we nipped that in the bud which seemed to pressure the other parents to do the same with their kids. This resulted in a much more pleasant stay.