I’ve been away for a week to visit my native New Mexico so I haven’t exactly been in the kitchen lately.  I did however experience some of the best cuisine starting with Carl’s Ranch Chicken.  Then there was the Indian Taco smothered in green chile at Serefino’s where Kat and my nieces ate.  So many good meals, so many memories.  There is so much to love about New Mexico.  Too much in fact but I’ll try to share some of the beauty, culture and serenity you will find when you visit.  September in New Mexico is special, the green chile is roasting on the streets, the chile ristras are hanging, the skies are the most beautiful blue and the adobe architecture and decor makes you feel at home.  We made our way across the state to Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Taos but first a trip to the farm.

The hummingbirds have been coming to the farm for many years.  My brother Carl has about 5 feeders on the front porch that he fills with sugar water each day.  Some days they have 20 hummingbirds or more.  My Mom has always been fascinated with the little hummers and has a collection of tiny little nests that have been abandoned over the years.

This is Rusty or Buster, I’m not sure which since they are identical, with the exception that Rusty has a rust colored patch around his neck.  He’s sleek like a panther and keeps the mice away!

It’s Tucumcari Tonight at the vintage Safari Motel on Route 66!  It’s a bit crowded at the farm so Joe and I will crash here tonight.  It’s really nostalgic and fun to stay at.

And across the street is the Blue Swallow Motel, another famous Route 66 treasure.  There are murals all around town displaying the history of Route 66.

We made our way to Albuquerque and Joe went for a hike along the La Luz Trail while I spent a girls day out with Kat and her girls.  He used his cell phone for the photos which turned out pretty good I think!

This is NM, sagebrush, cactus, cedar trees and pinon.  See the trails below, lots to explore, but no snakes, please!

Looking back it looks a little hazy.

Starting to rain in the distance.

Getting closer but Joe managed to stay dry!

The clouds hung low on our way to Santa Fe.

But the view was beautiful.

Next stop Santa Fe and shopping at the square.

On the North side of the square the Native Americans lay out their art and jewelry on the sidewalk.

Those are little pottery owls.

Around the corner I found the chile ristras hanging.  I would have loved to bring one home but it wasn’t very practical.

These are Desert Sage and Cedar Smudge Twists.  These have traditionally been used in Native American spiritual cleansing ceremonies.

Some galleries display art outside.

And now for some color come see “The Rainbow Man”.

The flowers were beautiful and NO they weren’t real.

Just a block away is the Loretto Chapel, a former Roman Catholic church that is now used as a museum and wedding chapel.  The staircase has been the subject of legend and rumor, and the circumstances surrounding its construction and its builder are considered miraculous by the Sisters of Loretto.

Just outside the church is a tree filled with Rosaries.

There’s the beautiful staircase.

A rustic bench.

I have a thing for doors as you can see from my header.  This is one in a collection of doors I found in Santa Fe.  My header was a gift from  Josh, who took pics of old vintage doors around the farm.  He put it together and named it “Tucumcari Doors”.

Joe treated me to a stay at the Buffalo Thunder Casino and Resort just north of Santa Fe.  The room was gorgeous!

We had a little patio just outside our room which would have been fun to sit in the evening except there was a chill in the air and drizzling rain.

Next we traveled to Taos, and the morning clouds were hanging low.

The landscape is beautiful and ever changing!

South of Taos the road parallels the Rio Grande River.

The river was low but swift.

We just happened on to a Mother duck and her ducklings.

More colorful landscapes!

The south end of the Rio Grande Gorge, just before you get to Taos.

A day in Taos!

The square in Taos.

Behind the Trading Post is this cute little Bed and Breakfast.

Indoor shops and galleries.

This was one of my favorite stores.

I found this beautiful pottery made in my hometown.

I couldn’t leave without picking up this beautiful bowl and ladle.  I’ll be making something special to display in this bowl soon!

Along our walk around Taos I found this old house that looked abandoned.  I would love to fix it up and give it some love.

We had an afternoon break at the Coffee Cats!

While we sat and drank our beverages we listened to the troubadour make some music.

Some Taos doors.

Taos Daisies!

We drove a few miles Northwest of Taos to see the majestic Rio Grande Gorge.

The south side had the most amazing sky!

My guy, Joe.

It’s been a long day!  I look wiped out.

Heading north through the Taos Valley.

Around the Angel Fire, Eagle Nest area.

Near Cimarron, NM.

Had to take a picture of the Philmont sign.  Cameron has a lot of memories from Philmont Scout Camp.

I picked up a few items.  Since I plan on making more tamales, I got a book with lots of recipes for sweet and savory fillings.  At the Santa Fe Olive Oil store I found green chile sea salt.  I also picked up a southwest placemat, some swatches of southwest prints and of course my beautiful pottery bowl and ladle.  Can’t wait til next time I go home!