Archive | April, 2011

The future’s so bright . . .

29 Apr


I gotta wear shades . . .

The sun was so bright at San Juan Bautista Mission. Really, it was too bright for shooting the flowers but I couldn’t resist.  I played with this a little bit in iPhoto and I’m so glad I shot it.  I’m sorta dazzled!

Now, where did I put my sunglasses?


Wordless Wednesday

27 Apr


Not feeling the anger?

24 Apr

I love Angry Birds — a great addictive game with just enough strategy to keep me interested but simple enough to be mindless, too.  My kind of game.

Heard about a new one today from my 11-1/2 year old daughter today.  Tiny Wings . . . oh my goodness.  I’m loving it.

It’s fun, deceptively easy, and totally addictive.  Both kids and I have been playing like mad.

Give it a try.  You won’t be sorry.  But, you also won’t be productive!  Trade offs . . .

Something of a wall flower

23 Apr

Spring is finally here but it’s shy and retiring.

Eeeensy delicate wildflower

Come out, come out, wherever you are!

I think I’m in love . . . bird art

22 Apr

OMG.  This is so cute.  The artist, Daphne of lacravatteduchien, is in Greece.   All her art is spectacular.  Lovely color.  Lovely designs.  I absolutely adore this owl and her other birds.  And, oh my goodness, the hedgehogs make me squeeee! with joy!

American Avocet

15 Apr

American Avocets

American Avocets.  Amazing birds.  They are so lovely.

American Avocet

They are intrepid hunters.  Graceful and deadly.

American Avocet getting some lunch

See what I mean?

American Avocet

I love the clear distinction between males and females.

American Avocets

Persistent, aren’t they?

Avocets in flight

Grace in motion and flight . . .

Latest, greatest reads . . .

14 Apr

The fact that some of my favorite authors actually take the TIME to write good books is somewhat annoying to me.  And, yes, I am clear on the contradiction in my statement.

I love that they write great books.  I just wish they could do it REALLY quickly.

I found a new author that I love.  Patricia Briggs.

She’s written a lot of books but the ones that I fell in love with are her Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series.  They are set in the same world with overlapping characters which is sort of like taking everything I like about series books and magnifying it.

Mercy Thompson is an auto mechanic with some real problems.  For one thing, she hangs out with werewolves, vampires, and other magical creatures.  For another, she’s a Native American shapeshifter who turns into a coyote.  Yup, her world is complicated especially when you add in all the interest she’s getting from her werewolf neighbor whose the Alpha in his pack.

The Alpha and Omega series is set in the same world and there are crossover characters and situations.  The Alpha in this situation is another Native American but this one is a werewolf.  He falls in with and rescues a female Omega wolf.  I won’t go into the details (because Briggs does a much better job of it than I can) but suffice to say that the Omega is very special and they click.

These books are edgy as urban fantasy and/or paranormal romances tend to be but they aren’t over the top edgy.  I found them very well written and compelling.  The women are strong but may need help from time to time.  The men are VERY strong and definitely need help from time to time.

I burned through these books in record time (not a surprise for me).  I read fast, especially when I’m reading something I really enjoy.  However, that gives me lots of time to go back and re-read which I also love.  I am most unhappy that I’ve read all the books in these series.  I have read the descriptions of her other works and it sounds good, just not what I’m wanting to read right now.  The good news is that she plans more books in both series.  The bad news . . . she seems to write slowly.  I’ll wait but I won’t be patient about it.

Cry Wolf is the first book in the Alpha Omega series, however, you should start with the novella that started it all: Alpha & Omega: A Companion Novella to Cry WolfMoon Called (Mercy Thompson, Book 1) is first in Mercy Thompson’s series.  You can start with either series.  Be aware that Alpha-Omega starts prior to the first Mercy Thompson book but overlaps it somewhat.

Hummer of Mystery

13 Apr

As we left Baylands, the wind had really picked up.  We all felt a bit wind-blown and sun-stressed.  I had woken up with a migraine so I’d had about much fun as I could handle.  As we walked back to the cars, I spotted this sullen hummingbird sitting in a high bush.


He was most annoyed with the wind — so much so that he didn’t really care that 7 people and 3 dogs all stopped to get a good look at him. He was so sullen and disinterested in us that I moved to a better vantage point. I was hoping to see him well enough to make an id.


No such luck.


Still, hard not to feel lucky, isn’t it?

To everything, tern, tern, tern

12 Apr

The Caspian Terns were amazing at Baylands on Saturday.  This group had landed on this small island (probably for nesting) and then took to the air together.  Luckily, I was in the right place at the right time . . .

Later one flew right by my face, slowly, gliding on the wind.  That time, I just stood there with my mouth open in amazement.  You can’t always be a photographer first.  Sometimes you just have to watch the birds!

Caspian Terns at Charleston Slough, Baylands Park, Palo Alto, CA

Rising above it all . . .

11 Apr


Spring Break is over and it’s back to the ol’ grindstone.  Like these birds, I need to rise above the challenges and find joy in my work.  It will probably come in the laughter of my students.  That tends to make me want to soar . . .