Hi, everyone!

Just a quick update: I'm still in the process of getting my website up and running, and it's going to be a bit before it's finished. I also wanted to let you know that the previous iteration of my blog (http://sarahallanauthor.blogspot.com/) is now dormant, and has been imported over to this one. My posts and post tags made it okay; the images, not so much. But that happens! At least you guys will still be able to search what's there. So keep following me over here! I hope that 2017 is the best year yet. xoxo Sarah...
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Quick update…

Hey, everyone!Just a quick update-I'm still working with my web designer, and I'll still be migrating my blog over to Wordpress.She's also working on a new logo for me--I love what she's come up with so far!We recently moved into a new house and have been super busy unpacking, so I haven't been around online much.I'll keep you posted when I know more!xoxo Sarah...
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Z is for Zia @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge

The Zia Sun Symbol is commonly seen around New Mexico, even on their state flag. But where did it come from? New Mexico's state flag, Picture from WikipediaThe Zia people are an indigenous tribe, and they currently live on the Zia Pueblo outside of Albuquerque. The sun is considered a sacred symbol, and the Zia symbol design reflects the tribe's philosophy of harmony of all things in the universe.There are four rays in four directions on the Zia Sun Symbol, meant to show the four points on the compass, four seasons of the year, the four seasons of life (childhood, youth, middle age, old age), and the four sacred obligations one must develop according to Zia belief (strong body, clear mind, pure spirit, and devotion to the welfare of others). The state flag of New Mexico (pictured above) has the red Zia on a field of Spanish yellow, symbolizing both parts of the state's culture and heritage.I hope you've enjoyed these little...
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Y is for Yucca @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge

New Mexico's state flower is the yucca, and has been officially since 1927.Yucca Flower Photo by DM on FlickrThere are about 40-50 species (including perennials, shrubs, and trees) and none are actually specified as the state flower.They're pollinated by a specific moth that goes from flower to flower and deliberately transfers the pollen from the stamen of one to the stigma of another, then lays eggs in the flower. The moth's offspring eat some of the developing seeds when they hatch.Pretty cool, huh?xoxo Sarah...
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X is for Explora! @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge

One of the most fun museums I've ever been to has to be Explora! (yes, it has exclamation points in its name), located on the west side of Albuquerque.It's an interactive museum--all of the exhibits are things you can touch and play with.Most of the topics are science and technology, and the different exhibits are fun to play with.Want to learn about aerodynamics first-hand? Try and float various items on a stream of air!Sound waves? Light? Gravity? Learn about all of these while interacting with objects and instruments.Even better, Explora! has special events like Adult Night. If you've ever been to a science museum and watched kids play with the children's exhibits, trying hard not to move them out of the way and play with the exhibits yourself, you're in luck--this is exactly what it's for. We had a blast making giant bubbles and playing with blocks without worrying we were going to get kicked out.If you want to have...
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W is for Watermelon @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge

Sandia, in Spanish, translates to "watermelon". So, the pretty Sandia Mountains are really the Watermelon Mountains.Why the odd name? Because, at sunset, the Sandias turn a lovely pink shade in the fading light. Sorry I don't have a picture of it (it only lasts a minute or two, and I'm often not near my phone), but here's a great shot of the mountains.Gorgeous day in #albuquerque #newmexico #ABQA photo posted by Sarah Allan (@sarahallanauthor) on Apr 2, 2016 at 4:14pm PDT xoxo Sarah...
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Bonus V: Valency Genis Art @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge @Valency

So I decided to do this extra post because my friend, Valency, is a talented artist and because she lives in New Mexico, it's perfect for my A-Z Challenge theme!Valency got her BFA degree at the University of New Mexico, and has been creating what she calls vegan taxidermy ever since. Her extraordinary pieces resemble, well, decapitated Dr. Seuss creatures, and each one is lovingly crafted to find their forever home. Some of her creations have gone to people from Pixar, and even Vincent Price's daughter took one home!She recently had a very successful show in Chicago, and I know she's creating new creatures for some upcoming events. If you like her work, she ships all over the world.Before I link to some pics of her amazing work, Valency can be found on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/ValencyArt/And on Instagram and Twitter as @ValencySomething's fishy around here... I put the link in my Instagram profile to sign up for @Rotofugi's online preview for my...
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V is for Vino @AprilA2Z #AtoZChallenge

No one was more surprised than me when I learned that New Mexico has vineyards.Because the first thing I think of when I think "wine" is a dry, desert environment. Perfect for growing grapes, of course. /sarcasmSo, of course I had to sample some New Mexican wines to figure out exactly how bad--or good--they were.Here were the contenders: Wine tasting--the things I do for my blog challenges. #wine #newmexico #atozchallengeA photo posted by Sarah Allan (@sarahallanauthor) on Mar 26, 2016 at 5:46pm PDTThere was St. Clair Winery Cabernet Sauvignon and Blue Teal Reisling. I figured it would be good to have a red and a white. The third wine, a Moscato from Voluptuous, was purchased because it was as close to a dessert wine I could find.Of course we had to have delicious snobby wine-tasting snacks.Wine tasting--the things I do for my blog challenges. #wine #newmexico #atozchallengeA photo posted by Sarah Allan (@sarahallanauthor) on Mar 26, 2016 at 5:46pm PDT And now...
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