Thursday, May 27, 2010

Wooden beams~SkyWatch Friday 052810

I looked up and saw these beautiful wooden beams in the garden center at the Living Desert Reserve last weekend. Aren't they interesting? Behind them are several California fan palms. SkyWatch Friday for May 28, 2010.

African village~Window Views and Doors, Too~May 27, 2010

This is the gift shop of the African village at the Living Desert Reserve in Palm Desert, CA. When we arrived last weekend, it had not opened yet because, as members, we got there an hour before it opened. I love the roof and the shadows it makes! Window Views and Doors, Too for May 27, 2010.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

"S"...ABC Wednesday, May 26, 2010

"S" is for SHADE. Shade is very important to us who live in the desert southwest. Being in the shade can lower the temperature outdoors by several degrees in the SUMMER. Even on a mild Spring day, being in the shade can lower the temperature. This shade is at the Meerkat Cafe at the Living Desert Reserve, in Palm Desert, CA. After walking around for an hour last weekend, my uncle and I stopped here to sit in the shade. Isn't it a beautiful patio? There were several hummingbirds buzzing around, getting nectar from the shrubs that were blossoming. Other small birds enjoy the shrubs, too! ABC Wednesday for May 26, 2010.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Unusual plant~Living Desert~That's My World 052510

Saturday morning was a gorgeous one here in our desert and I was able to visit the Living Desert. I spotted this unusual plant near the African gardens. I have no idea what it is. Maybe one of you know? The lone one towered over 10 feet above us, while the bunch was about 4 feet high. That's My World for Tuesday, May 25, 2010.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Statue~Round Robin Challenge 052210

I went to the Living Desert Reserve with my uncle yesterday. He is in his 80's and enjoyed getting out and about with his camera (a Nikon). We got there before the park opened, since we are both members. Unfortunately, the giraffes weren't out, so I took a picture of the giraffe statute outside their enclosure. The keepers were busy cleaning up and their alfalfa was up high (their breakfast). I wish we had seen them, but maybe another time!
Round Robin Challenge for May 22, 2010. Here's the link to Round Robin:

Friday, May 21, 2010

Mistletoe tree~SkyWatch Friday 052110

This dead-looking tree is full of mistletoe. Trees here in the desert do get mistletoe and, as you can see, this one is loaded with it. I believe it is a palo verde, since there is another one like it across the parking lot. SkyWatch Friday for May 21, 2010.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

How long does litter last?~~Think Green Thursday 052010

I came upon this sign at Red Rock Canyon, which is located outside Las Vegas, NV. Against the beauty of the red rocks, it really gave me something to think about. Three years ago I started a plastic bottle recycling program at my school. I recycle the bottles the kids bring me and send the proceeds to a horse rescue in Northern California. Sometimes $40 will rescue a horse off a slaughter-bound feedlot. The kids have been pretty good about bringing in bottles from home, although this year, with the economy like it is, they aren't participating as much. Think Green Thursday for May 20, 2010.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Smoke tree ~ Outdoor Wednesday 052010

No words necessary. Outdoor Wednesday for May 20, 2010.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Saguaro blossoms~Mellow Yellow Monday 051710

Our local saguaros are starting to bloom. Saguaros are not native to our desert and have to be trucked in. Many are stolen due to their value, but this one is doing quite well! I always enjoy seeing their blossoms open up in May every year. Mellow Yellow Monday for April 17, 2010.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mountain wildflowers~Sunday Stills Challenge 051610

Our local mountain valley is ablaze with yellow wildflowers right now. There are fields full of them, including these that I found one weekend not too long ago! I can see these fields across the valley from the place where I board my horses and one day I decided I just had to go investigate them. I'm glad I did. They are still in full bloom as of yesterday, but with temperatures rising this week, I don't know how much longer they will be blooming. Sunday Stills Challenge for May 16, 2010.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sunset~Valley of Fire~Skywatch Friday 051310

As we drove out of the Valley of Fire, NV, the sun was setting behind the nearby hills. I pulled over the took this photo. What a great view to end the day! SkyWatch Friday 051410

Burro sign, Red Rock Canyon

We passed several of these burro signs during our travels through and out of Red Rock Canyon. Some of them had bullet holes in them...sigh...but this one was in relatively good condition. We didn't see any burros while we were there, however!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Red Rock Canyon, NV~Outdoor Wednesday 051210

Hubby and I drove out to Red Rock Canyon, outside of Las Vegas, on our last day of our weekend getaway a couple of weeks ago. It was cold and windy that morning and I had to put a sweatshirt on! Brrrrrr!!! There were some climbers on one large boulder and many visitors to the park. Outdoor Wednesday for May 112, 2010.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ocotillos~Ruby Tuesday for 051110

I love ocotillos when they are blooming and ours here in the desert are in full bloom right now. Aren't they pretty? Ruby Tuesday for 051110

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Bodie, CA buildings~Sunday Stills Challenge 051010

Back to Bodie, CA for another challenge! This one is the letter "B". Well, BODIE has plenty of BUILDINGS, so here goes! Sunday Stills Challenge for May 10, 2010.
Somebody asked if people still live here. Bodie was a gold/silver mining town in the late 1800's, early 1900's. After a fire, 95% of the town burned down and this is all that is left. It is a state park and closes at sundown every day. I believe it is CLOSED during winter, too, since the day we drove by, the snow was piled up very high. You drive a very long road (13 or 14 miles) into Bodie and 9 miles of that are dirt and VERY uneven. The only residents now are state park rangers. I found a few photos of the houses that were renovated for the rangers. It is on a high, windy plateau and is VERY cold in winter and VERY hot in summer. In fact, we went there twice. The first afternoon (and Bodie closes about 4:00 p.m.) it was extremely hot and we didn't have water! So, we returned the next morning for more pics. If you go, check the weather forecast before you head out there, and in summer, bring water, a hat, and sunscreen. As you notice, there are no trees in Bodie. It is a photographer's dream and we can't wait to return to Bodie this summer.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Silhouette~SkyWatch Friday 050910

Hubby and I arrived in the Valley of Fire, Nevada, in late afternoon. If you aren't familiar with the Valley of Fire, it is a long canyon about 45 miles outside of Las Vegas. The road that goes through it continues down to the edge of Lake Mead. We had heard of this valley, but had never visited it before. I'm glad we did! I stopped on the road through the red rocks to take this photo of the red rocks and blue sky. SkyWatch Friday, April 9, 2010.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

"P" is for prickly pear~ABC Wednesday 050510

We drove through Nevada's Valley of Fire last weekend and were so impressed by the red rock. But, we also look down at our feet. We saw this prickly pear cactus, which was in full bloom. ABC Wednesday 050510

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Valley of Fire, Nevada~~Scenic Sunday 050210

After our morning at the horse clinic outside of Las Vegas, hubby and I bought sandwiches at Whole Foods, went back to the hotel, ate lunch, collapsed for an hour and took a nap, and got up in time to watch the Kentucky Derby. By 4:00 p.m. we were ready to hit the road again and do some sightseeing. We had never driven through the Valley of Fire state park outside of Las Vegas, so off we went! And, what views! Our first glimpse was some red rocks among the lava which makes up the mountains in that region. Upon entering the park, we were treated to quite a landscape! The ranger at the station told us to take the Mouse's Tank road, up beyond the visitors' center (which had just closed), so we did. Here are some pics from that road. Scenic Sunday for May 2, 2010.