Friday, May 29, 2009

That buzzing noise...


"That buzzing-noise means something. You don't get a buzzing-noise like that, just buzzing and buzzing, without its meaning something. If there's a buzzing-noise, somebody's making a buzzing-noise, and the only reason for making a buzzing-noise that I know of is because you are a bee."
~ Winnie-the-Pooh

Or, if you are a very tired bee at the end of the day,
you are perhaps just sitting quietly, thinking bee thoughts.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hydrangea


I noticed that my hydrangea is starting to bloom. Slowly, one blossom at a time, the blue and purple are seeping in.

If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change. ~ Buddha

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day


The Memorial Day tradition on my mom's side of the family is to make floral arrangements for each of our family members in the Goleta Cemetery. My grandmother used to do it, and when she was no longer able to, my mom took over. When my brother moved to Bali and we began to admire some of their customs, we started placing incense at each grave as well. I personally love the quiet, casual way we go about it—like stopping by someone's house for a friendly visit. It's not sad or somber or serious—that wouldn't fit our family's personality or style.

We don't have a lot of family traditions, so it means a lot to me that we do have this one. I like to remember my grandparents and wonder about the other personalities who share the space with them. What were my great-grandparents and other ancestors like as individuals? What traits of theirs do I carry? I think it's important to have days like this to remember and honor our family connections.

These photos were taken by my husband in 2001, with, of all things, an old Polaroid camera. Instant gratification before digital, but a little lacking in size and quality.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Wildflower Cards


Over the weekend I spent some time creating a few new products for my Zazzle store. I had fun creating a matching series of cards with some of my wildflower photos. It was challenging to identify the rose sage, which we ran across on a backpacking trip up Mt. San Jacinto last July, but I finally found some photos that matched. It is an amazingly beautiful flower to come across on a hot, dusty trail.

I've been kind of in limbo lately, taking photos but not quite geared up to getting them beyond my computer. Hope to get there soon...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Goofing Off

Mom doesn't seem to be interested in doing anything very productive today, so we all spent some time outside for a little while. It's SUCH a nice day. Rusty was just daydreaming (he's pretty boring), but I was busy in the bushes keeping an eye on what the lizards were up to. They're sneaky.



I decided I'd better see what Mom was up to. Seemed as if Rusty was getting way too much attention! What about ME?


Isn't this fun? Aren't I cute?


We hope you're goofing off today too.

Woof!

Sadie

Friday, May 15, 2009

Feathered Friends

video
This morning I spent a few moments with our backyard birds, who fill every hour of daylight with song. At first they were rather nervous to have me standing there, even though I wasn't really all that close, but eventually they realized I was not out to cause any harm. Lately we've had a few less common visitors (black-headed grosbeak & American goldfinch), but they were apparently too busy elsewhere to make an appearance this morning. We get countless hours of amusement watching all the characters who swirl around our feeders—and their chatter nicely masks the less pleasing sounds of suburbia.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Gratitude


Today is to be counted as one of the best days of my life. I'm what you might call a professional self-doubter, so I was utterly astounded when I found out this morning that my Desert Globemallow photo won a prize in the Orange County Register's wildflower photo contest. Me?! Yes! Second place in the "Nature & More" category.

I am so grateful! I am so lucky that a special lady I used to work with read about the contest, thought of me, and told me I should enter. She's one of those people who's always thinking of others, and look at the result she produced. Plus, I only informed a couple dozen of my friends about the contest and posted it here on my blog, yet my photo received 246 votes! How wonderful it is that people take the time to do things like that for each other. I didn't win the popular vote (the winner had over 80,000 votes!), but I sure confirmed I have great friends.

This is also the first time I have ever won anything based on "talent" rather than luck. My photography became a more serious adventure only recently. I somehow found the courage to start putting it out into the world, and it seems this prize must be my reward for taking that risk. What a pleasing surprise to have my creative efforts validated.

THANK YOU to everyone who is so supportive of me and this creative journey. To honor your kindness, I will attempt to become less proficient at doubting and second-guessing myself!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

We're having babies!


Well, okay, we are not physically having babies. But the lizards in our yard certainly are! We had quite a gaggle of baby lizards running around last year and it appears this year will be similar. As I was leaving on my walk with the dogs yesterday afternoon, I spotted something on the slope in our front yard. Eggs! I had noticed the tell-tale dugout hollows lately, and this one got filled with seven eggs. We've never witnessed this before. This morning they had been carefully covered with the bark on the slope, so I'm glad I took a moment yesterday to run in and get my camera. Aren't they cute?! It may be hard to tell since I zoomed in, but they are about the size of a small piece of pea gravel. I can't wait to see the little guys running around again. Although we have to be careful, because they're not too bright about dogs, vehicle tires, and lawn mowers when they first appear.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Courage, Perseverence, Honor

I haven't posted in a week, so I thought I'd at least make a brief appearance. My mom and I were in Las Vegas for three days over the weekend to attend a tea expo for my brother (too far for him to attend from Indonesia). And yesterday my parents had to evacuate their home because of the latest fire raging in Santa Barbara, so now I'm distracted by keeping an eye on that situation from afar.

Anyway, this photo seemed appropriate to share. On Sunday evening, I shot some quick photos on our walk back to the Luxor. It was an absolutely beautiful evening, the end of a fun whirlwind trip with mom. This is the Statue of Liberty that stands on the corner of New York-New York. It reminds me of the courage and perseverence of our firefighters who go so willingly into battle to keep the rest of us safe from harm. So, in honor of all who are risking their lives right now...