Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tug of War

This is my most current photo of local weather conditions,
taken right from my front porch.

(If you look in the bottom left-hand corner,
you can see the shadows of the native oaks in my yard.)

Nobody told Utah that the first day of Spring was March 20th.

AND, here's the view from the top of my driveway.
Lovely, but seasonally inappropriate.

AND, hiking the canyon has been raaaaather frigid.
(I can't photograph the glacier icy wind. I promise, it was there.)

winter will NOT win this tug-of-war!

My apricot tree is bravely blossoming
outside my bedroom window.
(You can't see it, but those blossoms are shivering.)

And, there are baby leaves being birthed
at the mouth of the canyon.
(If you wonder where the snow is,
we get a dump and then a thaw and then a dump.)

* * *

There was a different sort of
taking place on the home front.

On the left is my grandson Kenneth
who came for a three day visit to Grandma's house.
On the right is another fellar who spent Saturday morning with us.

These tikes found great delight in playing
"Tug of War"
with any items deemed valuable by the other one
using large household implements to play
"BOINK the Other Little Boy's Head".

Things such as the fireplace shovel and my rolling pin.

After that Other Little Boy left with his parents,
Kenneth played "Horsey"
by actually riding on top of this miniature version.
Repeatedly, through-out the weekend.

Mr. K was THRILLED to strum a guitar while three teen-age girls
(my god-daughter & two friends)
showed their admiration of his fine musical prowess.

He spent a good deal of his time, jiving to pretend tunes
via the non-working earphones from my dress-up box,

. . . and swimming around the living room carpet,
decked out in my snorkeling gear

. . . alongside his very best friend - CHICA.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Athletic Weekend

This Saturday, there were 3 ATHLETIC events in our family.
I managed to witness 2 of them and was rather glad to miss the third, since it would have FREAKED me out.

My goddaughter made the finals in JAVELIN at the regional high school track meet.

At the same meet, my niece won 1st place running in the 400 meter race.

It was great to see my brother, his wife and two of other family members there to cheer her on.

(BTW, notice the GREEN grass in these track meet shots! The snow melted, only to return this morning.)

On the same day, a very different sort of athletic event was taking place just fifteen miles south of the track field.

My daughter Kelty was doing an equestrian sport called VAULTING. As she says it, "Vaulting is a great workout. It helps develop balance and core strength." I guess it's something like gymnastics on horseback!

Shall we ship her off to Ringling Brothers Circus?

I think I'll wait a bit before I give vaulting a try.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Last Visit of Winter?

Taken from my front porch, Tuesday morning.

This week brought yet another round of SNOW. Not the powdery stuff that makes Utah a skier's paradise. Rather, a torrent of big ole heavy wet flakes that collected on the trees, making them look like a cake decorator loaded generous globs of frosting onto the branches.

I have two windows in the corner of my bedroom. After the snow fell, I snapped three photos while sitting on top my bed, looking outside. Each one gives a different angle of the views from my sleeping chamber . . .




At the beginning of the week, Chica (my dog) had a rather unlucky incident while scampering around in the canyon. I heard her yelp and then she limped into view with quite an ugly gash on her thigh. A mountain lion or a jagged twig? I'll never know. She now sports THIS accessory:

The cumbersome collar prevents her from pulling out her stitches. Unfortunately, it also scoops up snow when she's investigating interesting things at ground level. Makes for a rather Up Close & Personal experience with the cold, white stuff.

Chica and I "broke trail" on our morning hike after the storm. I was completely enamored with the undulating waves of pristine snow covering the earth. The shadows of the naked tree branches accentuated the beauty. I've seen all this before, but somehow it felt like the first time and it caught me by surprise.

Those trees won't be naked for long.
Up in the canyon, the buds of the cottonwood trees are swelling.

Down in the valley, the tulips are coming up.

We've been blessed with a few warm days since the storm and much of the snow has melted. There's a slight possibility that we received our LAST visit of winter. Most definitely, it's my LAST posting on the subject!

Oh! But one more share!
On Wednesday morning, I caught the FULL MOON
setting on the other side of the valley . . .

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Spoiled in Florida

The last half of winter I become ravenous for warmth, sunshine, beaches. When the kids were little, I'd toss them in the car and tootle on down to Mexico. A room near the beach = $8 a night. The kids frolicked in the water and I soaked in the balmy clime, the rhythmic waves, the sea breezes.
1993 - At the Beach

1995 - My Daughters with New Friends in Mexico

This year, I scored TWO extraordinary escapes from winter. Belize (see my February blogs) and, most recently . . .

2009 - Anne & I on Key Biscayne,
a Florida island.

We bunked at my brother's condo with extraordinary views from the balconies.

Early Morning View

Late Afternoon View - Different Angle

Every room had floor-to-ceiling windows with walk-out balconies. Practicing YOGA with the sunlight streaming into the living room just FLOATED MY BOAT!

We took one day to get a taste of the Everglades.
(Yes. I snapped this photo.)

Out on an AIR BOAT TOUR, we were sighting ALLIGATORS, to the right & to the left, when our boat got STUCK. The guide jumped down into those gator infested waters. YIKES!

He survived and we eventually we became UN-stuck. Eventually.

I got the chance of a life-time to hold one of those little fellas with the bone-crushing jaws. It was truly AWESOME!

If you stroke 'em under their jaws, they won't bite.

~ ~ ~

We were undoubtedly SPOILED in Florida, because my brother's pad is really REALLY nice. First of all, this is what it looks like when you drive up . . .

Let me just say, those palms are GIGANTIC.

There are miles of walking paths attached to the condos.
It's almost like a little seaside park.

(This restaurant was attached to the condominiums.)

Going to my brother's condo brought back some sweet memories. In 2006, I took my mom there. Although she had Alzheimer's and struggled with simple things like finding the bathroom, she found great pleasure in the sea birds, the sunlight reflecting off the ocean, the bright tropical flowers.

Ken joined us for a couple of days and we took her out swimming. She just loved bouncing around in the water. No concerns about how well her bathing suit fit or other such female silliness. She was simply enjoying herself.

My brother Ken and my mom
Florida - 2006

My mom was living in FULLY in the present moment and handling disorienting circumstances with remarkable grace. This photo at the swimming pool reminds me of those sweet moments together in Florida, just one year before she passed away.

I do miss her.
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