Saturday, January 30, 2010


We seem to be done with inclement weather for a the next several days. I understand that the midwest to the east is getting pummelled with weather; ice, snow, loss of power, downed trees.

I'm praying that you're all safe and warm.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Look Up, Look Down

Looking up at the construction site that we are shooting a video chronicle of for a client.
Looking up, I saw this sign. World famous? Really?

Looking up yesterday:

Looking down:

Looking at the sun coming up:

Looking at the sun going down.
Have a wonderful weekend!
To see other members ups and downs, or to add yours, go here!

Monday, January 25, 2010


I looked the word fear up in the dictionary today. Here's what I found.

1. A feeling of agitation and anxiety caused by the presence or imminence of danger.
2. A state or condition marked by this feeling: living in fear.
3. A feeling of disquiet or apprehension: a fear of looking foolish.
4. Extreme reverence or awe, as toward a supreme power.
5. A reason for dread or apprehension: Being alone is my greatest fear.

When you really think about it, there are many different kinds of fear, and we've probably all experienced them at one time or another.

I'm thinking back on some that I have experienced. I have experienced the agitation caused by the imminence of danger (real or imagined.) Haven't we all?

Holy cow, I have absolutely experienced the fear of looking foolish, mostly when I was younger; I do so many goofy things. Luckily, as I grow older I am much more accepting of myself, and so, don't worry too much about it.

How about a fear of failure? For some, it holds them back. For others, it forces them forward.

Fear for the wellbeing of someone else. That's a toughie because you usually don't have any control over it.

There's healthy fear; something that keeps you from hurting yourself, or putting yourself in a bad situation.

There is also a "fun" fear (for lack of a better word). Scary movies or books.

Talk to me. About fear. What was your most fearful moment, and what did you do?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Hubby's Photo

We were picture taking fools yesterday. I swear as the day moved along, and the sun moved in and out of clouds, we were crazily snapping away.

In the early afternoon, the sun started shining on the mountains that we see out the back of our house, the Dragoons. They're probably 40 miles away, but I've mentioned before that you can see for miles around here.

Anyway, he took the camera out to the pool deck to take more pictures of the snow on those far away mountains, and while trying to get focused and calm, he heard the familiar buzz next to his head.

He turned ever so slightly, and snapped.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Room with a View

Oh, yes. Good morning!

I love the view from my office. Especially this morning.
The view from Hubby's office isn't bad either.

And the view from the kitchen sink, where I have to wash dishes over, and over, and over again. Somehow, it's not so bad when I get to dream away, looking at this.

See the black area in the middle of the mountain? That's the waterfall. It's probably frozen now, but should start running when it warms up a bit.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sounds in Your Town - FSO

This weeks theme is brought to us by NanU. What a creative theme this is. I loved the idea of being led around, blindfolded, to take photos of what we heard. The weather was totally unconducive to being out there doing that however.

I did manage some from inside the house though. This first one I would know blindfolded, for sure.

We have garbage pick up twice a week here in AZ. I'm not sure why, unless it's the heat. Nobody wants old garbage roasting in the can, right? I also wonder about the sound of the truck, the squealing of the brakes. Do they make them to sound like that, so that people like me who may, on occasion, forget to put the can out, will hear it coming, and run to get it out to the curb in time?
The weather has been unusual the last few days. Unusual for AZ, that is. It has rained steadily for a couple of days now, nonstop. So I've been listening to rain pelting my office window.

And because of the storms going through, we've had bigtime wind. It's been howling for days!

That's it from me this week, wrapped in the warmth and comfort of my little abode.
For more creative photos on this great theme, go to! (My linky is not working today :( )

Thursday, January 21, 2010


If there's moisture in the air here, we're gonna get a rainbow. That's in front of the mountain that you can't see right now.

The rainbow has been around all morning long, just moving north as the sun gets higher in the sky. It always crosses my mind that a rainbow is a gift from God. It's like, "I know it's been rainy and drab. Here, this is for you."

With all of the drizzle and strong, gusty winds today, this little guy has been in and out of that gardenia bush.

And look who I spotted in the boxwood; a bird I've never seen before.
Any port in the storm, right? He likes the Hummingbird feeder too.

I know the last picture is hard to see, but I wanted to show you his backside. I think it's some kind of finch. Anyone know?

Although to the right of our house it is fairly clear with sun, the left of our house is just that much closer to the mountain, and has been drizzly & cloudy all day. Weird. The weather is calling for 80 mph winds tonight. I hope all of my little friends hang on tight!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Wind

The wind can be relentless here in the fall and spring. I've written before about being on the periphery of storm systems that blow through to the north of us, creating some pretty crazy wind.

Laying in bed in the middle of the night, listening to the wind howl outside, I often think about the indians that surely roamed this territory. Although I think they probably looked for sheltered areas to camp, I doubt that they escaped much of the elements.

Imagine your teepee being whipped around, and pelted with a downpour of lashing rain. Cracks of thunder that feel like they could split you in two. I never really gave much thought to what that must have been like, until we moved here. I may have to do some research about that. It seems pretty fascinating to me now.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Good Morning

This time of year, sunrise happens about 7:10 a.m. here. Arizona does not observe daylight savings time. This is weird to me to have it dark so late, but I like not having to concern myself with falling forward or back. However, it does still mess with making phone calls to people in other states. Let's see, what time is it there??? During the summer months, it will start getting light around 4:00 a.m.

I don't think I've ever been as aware of the location of sunrises and sunsets as I have been here. You can see almost to forever in any direction, so the changes of the sun are very apparent here. I remember a realtor telling us when we first came here, "In the summer, the sun will set here." Then he halfway turned around and said, "In the winter, the sun will set there." It mattered then because we were having a house built, and the heat of the afternoon sun could keep you inside if the deck didn't face in the right direction.

Anyhoo, it's Monday morning. I saw a beautiful sunrise, and now it's back to work for me. I hope your day is a beautiful one!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday Morning

Ah, Sunday morning. I love Sunday mornings. Saturdays are made for cleaning house, running errands, being busy. But Sunday mornings, for me, are a time to relax, listen to classical music, dream a bit, and think of creative things I'd like to do.

While checking in to some of my favorite blogs this morning, I found this. Kim is a very talented, creative, and funny woman. I guess you have to have a great sense of humor with 4 kids (under 5?).

What I loved about her painting is the shading, the highlights, the whimsey of it. Check out her website! Right up my alley. Man! How I'd love to be able to do that!

So that's what I'm dreaming about this morning. So often I'll try something, and because it's not great to begin with, I figure I can't do it. I'm tired of giving up so easily. So without actually making a "resolution" for the new year, I'm going to try the concept of "practicing!" Reading about things, the how to of them.

What is it that you would like to learn to do better?

Thursday, January 14, 2010


This weeks theme was suggested by Scriptor Senex at Rambles from my Chair. I was so excited to see that the theme is Birds because I am a bird nut! I love them. Even the ones that other people usually don't care for, I LOVE!

I notice them. Subconciously, I'm on the lookout for them, all the time.

This Cooper's Hawk is a fairly frequent visitor because I feed the little yard birds. These birds will take flying dives into bushes, looking for smaller birds to eat.

This one's for you Scriptor:

Another frequent visitor is the Roadrunner. Yes, they do run across roads (cracks me up), and only fly when they absolutely have to. They will jump up into bushes to get a little bird lunch.

Hubby bought me these concrete ducks one year for Christmas, knowing I would love them around the water dish in the front yard.

Gambel's Quail. I'm not sure where they go in the winter. But during the summer, we are FAT with them!

Yes, pun intended.

The largest family of baby quail I've seen meander through my front yard numbered 17!

These ubiquitous Turkey Vultures during the summer, are nowhere to be found in the winter.

During the winter, these pigeons are huddled together around the electrical boxes on poles. I often wondered if those lines are warm from the electricity running through them.

The Anna's Hummingbird are the only ones left this time of year.
This next one,

the blue bird on the right, I had never seen him before, or since. The photo is blurry, but that's about the best view I had of him too.
My town is full of the biggest, most healthy looking crows I've ever seen.

They like to hang out on the main drag of town (probably because of the fast food places) talking, and watching traffic go by. Every once in a while they will catch a thermal in the sky, and there could be 15 or 20 of them circling. I never get tired of watching them.
I had to add this one. He just showed up this morning. A Red Bellied Woodpecker.

I could go on and on, and on, but I won't. Please fly on over to the Friday My Town Shootout site, and check out everyone's contribution for this week!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Just another day

I don't think I've ever shown you a picture of the geranium that sits at my front door outside.

The previous owners left it here five years ago. It's hooked up to irrigation. That's probably why they left it. he he.

What is so amazing about it, is that it blooms all year round. During the winter, it does not put out as many, but will still keep poppin' them out.

I've started several new plants with leaves that have come off while taking spent blooms off. I swear, even the new plants are tough! Must have been a really good strain or something.

Yes, I'm rambling. I'm bored, although I have more than enough to do. I'm anxious, even though there's nothing more I can do to move the house along. I'm having a hard time sitting still, even though I need to focus on my work.

Take a deep breath, turn it over, let it go.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Overcast Wednesday

A somewhat overcast day here in southeast Arizona. These days we have a high of about 60*, and a low down to freezing. I know there will be some eye rolling here, but I'm cold! I guess when you live in a warmer area, the cold seems to be harder to take.

Fifteen hundred feet higher, you can see there is still snow on the top of the mountain. It's hard to tell how much is up there when the sun is shining; it glistens and creates shadows. I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

I'm starting to notice the birds landing on the concrete block wall and readjusting nesting material in their beaks. Do you think they are fluffing the winter nest? Or could they actually be thinking of spring already?

I also notice more rabbits in my front yard these days. Really, it looks like a dead zone out there. No new sprouts for them to munch, and the nightime freezes have burned the low lying plants. I've started cutting up apples that may have passed their prime, and putting them out by the water dish in front. The birds and the bunnies take turns nibbling. By morning, even the cores are gone, found by who knows who?

Speaking of the yard looking like a dead zone, perspective buyers probably look at the yard now and think of how much work it would be to make something out of it. So I made a brochure that I will have available from now on, sitting on the kitchen counter, showing what the yard will become again in spring.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

One Down

One garage sale down, probably two or three more to go... As you can see, Wilson is exhausted. His morning siesta was so rudely interupted! All morning long. Let's face it, someone had to keep track of the goings on around here. He didn't realize that Shasta had it ALL under control!

We didn't even open the garage door until after 7 a.m. today, when it started to get light. So different from this summer when people just showed up at 5:30, with no signs out. I was grateful for the extra time.

I've mentioned before that we are only about 15 miles from the Mexican border. By the number of people who stop, that do not speak english, or very little, I wonder if they come across in the wee morning hours on Saturdays to scour the ubiquitous yard/garage sales happening in our town. And so many of them with little kids. I'm a little embarassed, at one point, I had to count from 1 to 15 in Spanish to explain how much one woman owed me. I couldn't just grab that one $15 word out of the air. LOL!

We did fairly well today, although not as well as we did during the summer sale. We had some things that I felt the need to get the amount that I was asking. I would tell people that amount, they would ask if I'd take less (like half!), I'd say no, they'd nod, and leave. Finally my neighbor, that was here helping us, commented to me that, depending on what my goal was for having the garage sale, perhaps what they were offering was not such a bad deal.'re right! My goal is to get rid of this STUFF! I guess that's perhaps why we didn't do as well this time. :)

There was one little woman, probably 65, maybe not even five feet tall or so, that wanted an item ( I can't even remember what it was at this point), for less than half of what I was asking. I said, "No, I really need to get the $5. "No, $2." "I'm sorry, I really need to get $5 for that." Then she tilted her head, smiled, squinted her eyes, and said, "Please?" Oh good Lord. What to do. I fought my weakness, and said, "I'm really sorry, the price is $5." OMG!!! She did it again!!! Head tilt, smile, eye squint, "Pleease."

"Of course you can have it for $2!!!" Actually, I felt really good about it. It was only later that I started wondering how many times she had blinked those big brown eyes at all of the places she had stopped. I had to laugh.

Friday, January 8, 2010

A Breathtaking Moment

An upside down ocean of fire...

Yesterday's post held photos from the sunrise. This is what came around in the evening. Sitting at my desk, typing away, and a chance glance out the window. How often do we forget to look, to pay attention.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Thursday Morning

What a crazy last few weeks it's been. Having my son here, which was wonderful, getting the house back in order after the holidays, cleaning out closets & drawers, deciding what to keep & what to put in the garage sale on Saturday, and having people come to look at the house in the middle of it with NO advance warning whatsoever! Yikes!

So the garage is loaded with piles that need to be laid out in some kind of order, and here's the part I'm really not looking forward to...the pricing. What a chore! But my neighbor offered to come over and help me late tomorrow. We may have to make a party of sorts out of it, just to get through it. Maybe some wine and appetizers? After the pricing? Nah, it'll be much more fun during, don't you think?

By the time we go to bed at night, we're exhausted.

Hubby says: It'll be worth it, you'll see.

Me: hesitantly nodding.

Hubby: Remember, just like when we moved from Santa Cruz?

Me: eye rolling, fingers in ears, humming to myself. Somehow that does not make me feel better.

Anyway, I sincerely hope that this is the last time we make a move like this. And it will be worth it when we drive off in the building on wheels.

But for now, I miss having the time to blog, to check in with my buddies, see how you're all doing.

I hope you enjoy the photos. They were not touched at all. Yes, it was a beautiful morning.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Cleaning Out the Stuff

Because we have the house up for sale, I've started going through cabinets, drawers, little tucked away places, imagining that I will be getting rid of stuff, and I will because I have to! I have hoarded magazines that I really liked. I'm talking, stacked vertically, about 2 ft. worth. Garage sale fodder, I say today. Someone will like them as much as I did.

But, here's the coolest thing about scaling back and having to go through each & every thing, and cubbyhole in my house. I am one of those people that have, what I consider, for me, brilliant insights about my own life; light bulb moments. It's only taken me 57 years to get to this point. LOL! But all along the way, whatever I was feeling, ended up on a little scrap of paper, tucked away for the light of day, sometime in the future. Not just "my" thoughts, but fantastic phrases, quotes, and feelings of others.

A couple of years ago, I purchased a notebook; a cheap, pretty, very shabby notebook, knowing that sometime in the future I would find a fulfilling use for it. I did today. I pulled it out, and because it is divided into three sections, started filling it up with these lightbulb moments of my own, other peoples bits of wisdom, and an important blank section for whom's purpose, I have yet to determine.

I gotta tell you, I am feeling absolutely sated by this tonight. Mostly because I also ran across a notebook that I had in the door pocket of my car for years. For several of those years, it was the hardest, most emotional, and extremely trying time for me and my family. I spewed every angry word, ugly thought, and tear streaked proclamation into that notebook. Nobody knew about that but me. It was my safe place to let go of all of the craziness I felt going on around me. It was a comfort for me.

At some point, I decided that it was not healthy for me to hang on to those writings. Time goes on, right? I reread each one of my entries and tore the page from the notebook, threw them away. And, truth be told, I felt good about it at the time.

Holding that notebook in my hands today, I feel the emotions in it still. I'm sorry that I tossed away those tidbits of my life. I'll never be able to go back and capture my words, my feelings from those days that, along with the good times, make up my life.

Who Lives Here?

Birds? Squirrels? Raccoons?

I don't know, but it looks like a nice place to live if you're a critter.

When I lived in CA, before I net Hubby, I lived in an area called Forest Lakes; in the mountains, in the redwoods. Across the creek, which ran through the backyard, and up the hill a bit, was a huge redwood tree that had a hole in the trunk. Every afternoon, around 4:30 or 5:00, I could see something stirring in that hole. With the help of some binoculars, I saw that it was a raccoon, just waking up, stretching, cleaning up to make a night of it.

I do love catching a glimpse of wildlife in their own habitat.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Looking Forward

I commented on one of the blogs that I follow, that I think one of the things that makes life good, is working forward. Not thinking back, not even necessarily "looking forward", but working forward.

We do what we do everyday, get up, grab some coffee, or not, go to work, come home, watch something on the tube, and go to bed. That is our day.

I do not believe that we are here to just keep repeating that, day in and day out. Yes, we all have some lousy days. Days where we don't know how we're ever going to come out ahead. Days where the weight of life's expectations are more than we have to give. No matter the reasons.

Don't we all have dreams, wishes, visions of what we want our lives to look like? So many things are out of our control; economy, our abilities, health.
Am I naive to think that we have any say in our future, in spite of these outer conditions? Maybe.

I can only tell you that I have been blessed with the blindness of the past, the reality of the present, and the dream of the future. I believe. Yes, I admit that my circumstances are pretty damned good. I worry about my family, my finances, and life in general. But truth be told, I have food on my table every night, heat in the cold, and a loving family. I am truly blessed. I'm not sure why. Am I special? Absolutely not. Do I have abilities that put me in a hightened caste? Hell no! Have I made rotten decisions that have totally turned my life around? Oh.... yeah!

But what I do have is the belief that I will land on my feet. I will figure out a way. Put my head down, and charge.

This is what I wish for everyone this brand new year. The ability to charge!


This week's theme is brought to you by Gordon. A fairly easy one for me, since we've been documenting the construction of our biggest client's new building.

This is the groundbreaking party he had.

He is a wonderfully generous man that takes very good care of his employees.
Since the groundbreaking, there has been steady progress.

This was the laying of the service area floor.

Through sleet, or snow, the job goes on.

To see many other takes on this theme, visit here!
Wishing you success in the construction of your new year!

Flora & Fauna

Books I have known & loved

  • Life of Pi
  • A Hundred Years of Solitude
  • Kite Runner
  • The Way the Crow Flies
  • Fall on Your Knees
  • Poisonwood Bible
  • East of Eden
  • Shantaram
  • I Know This Much is True

Illegal Immigration