Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Sandstone Skies

There are a lot of sandstone formations in northeastern Utah.  The more famous formations are in the southern parks but we have our favorites right here at home.

For more fabulous skies from around the world, check Sky Watch Friday starting Thursday afternoon.  Apparently my plate is full because I thought today was Thursday.......

Monday, April 27, 2009

More pictures from the Flume Trail

My most favorite trail is only five minutes from my house.  It goes clear up into the High Uintah (you-in-tah) Mountains if you have the time and inclination to hike miles and miles. It's only 1.5 miles to the bridge.  The hike is great for morning exercise or slower strolls with a camera.

For more information on the history of the flume and the Dry Fork sinks, where the water disappears, look here.

For more pictures from around the world, visit MyWorldTuesday.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Himalayas in Bhutan

Just past Trongsa, on our way to the Black Mountain Trek last year.  This is worth clicking on to see in more detail.

For more scenic shots, check out Scenic Sunday here.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Budding leaves

'The seasons are what a symphony ought to be:  four perfect movements in harmony with each other. " ~Arthur Rubenstein

Flume Trail Bridge

It will be a month or so before the snow melt starts coming down from the mountains to fill the creek.  Then the water will roar and the rocks will tumble downstream.

Everything is still looking gray but there are little buds on the trees.

Getting down and artsy.

This is the same bridge on my header.  The header picture was taken last fall.  Soon everything will look completely different.  Maybe when it's green I'll change it.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

First evening walk in spring weather

Finally, now late in April, we had a warm spring day and a beautiful evening with no wind. The grass is turning a little green and further down in elevation trees are leafing out, but not here yet.  It was wonderful just to be able to go for a walk around our neighborhood and enjoy the outdoors for a change.

This is Castle Cove ("my" mountain) from a distance.  If you click on the picture and look at the green steel roof to the left of the white playhouse, you will see part of my house.

We live at an elevation of 6800' or 2072m.

For more beautiful skies around the world, check out SkyWatchFriday.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Words on Wednesday

Lulu, the cat, isn't a calico and she hasn't had her fur dyed with henna (see comments from last post).  She is just a kitty my husband rescued from the road when she was a baby.  All our cats are outdoor cats who are offered a heated "igloo" for winter warmth.   I think her fur has bleached out in the sun, giving her such unusual coloring.  She is a silly girl who is friendly sometimes and sometimes not, like a lot of her kitty cousins.  She is particularly fond of Brogan and loves to rub on his legs.  He doesn't mind when the duck sleeps with him either.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Don't stick your head in the sand

Bird seed works just as well.

Yesterday was the first beautiful day we have had in what seems like eternity but maybe it was only a month or so.  Who can remember?  I took out my camera with a zoom lens and a tripod to take bird pictures.  I plunked down a chair and set it all up.  Seeing the beautiful bird pictures that MyWorld and SkyWatch bloggers have posted has been inspiring.  So, there I was all set up, patiently waiting and no birds.  I realized there was no seed in the feeders which might have explained why the birds weren't there.  I filled up those babies and in came the birds.  I set my camera for sunny f16 just like the book told me to do and snapped away.  Most of my pictures were very disappointing.  I went back out and tried some different settings.  Still not much luck.  In total frustration I gave up and went inside.  I swear pictures come out better when I don't try so hard.  Maybe I'll just stick my head in the bird seed.

For some of those inspiring pictures by people who know how to use their camera equipment, check out MyWorldTuesday.  Any birders who want to leave helpful hints, please do.  Really.  Please.

Friday, April 17, 2009


"I hate quotations.  Tell me what you know."  --Ralph Waldo Emerson

This got me thinking this morning.  What do I know?

I started to consider the difference between knowing, thinking and feeling.  What follows is not for the faint of heart or those less philosophically inclined.

I was feeling particularly pleased with my last post.  I liked the juxtaposition of the poetry with the pictures.  Just using my intuition it came together with pictures I had taken and a quote I had found.  I post a lot of pictures with quotes.  I like to pair my pictures with quotes because the words seem more eloquent or beautiful than something I can write myself.  I tend towards intellectualizing when I write.  It's more difficult to write poetically.  It's easier for me to write documents than to write fiction.  I know this about myself.  After I read Emerson's opinion I wondered if I should not use quotations, should I write only my own thoughts in my own words.  Hmmmm.....

I consulted Wiktionary.

To know:  to be certain or sure about, to understand a subject, to be informed about

To think:  ponder, to communicate to oneself in one's mind, to conceive of something, to be of the opinion, to guess, to reckon, to consider, judge, regard

To feel:  to experience an emotion or mental state about, to become aware of, to receive information through the senses

Well, I have read many things that people have written about with great certainty. They believe they are absolutely right about something but sometimes I don't agree with them at all.   I ponder things and communicate with myself in my mind all the time!  This is actually kind of amusing. It's ego and ego likes to be certain and sure about everything.  Usually there's the judgment that comes into play when we are certain that we are right because that means other people are wrong. In our world of dualistic thinking (politics and religion come to mind),  I have infinite opportunities to practice acceptance of the many different ways there are of thinking, knowing and feeling.

So, as I do daily, I went out to feed the animals. I thought about what Emerson had to say, and about my blogging, and about knowing, thoughts and feelings. This is what I came up with:

I love my family, my friends and animals.  I love nature, beauty and creativity, the arts.  Life is very fragile.  I am getting older one day at a time.

I believe the sun will continue to rise in my lifetime.  I understand that eventually the sun will burn itself out and the earth will die and I will be long gone.  This is based on what scientists tell me.  I wouldn't know much about anything if I didn't read what other people think or know or feel.

What I believe, what I think is knowledge, may not be true for someone else. I know it's all in my mind. The bottom line is that I don't know much but I think a lot and I have many feelings. Does anybody really care?  Is anyone else getting a headache?

In her fabulous blog Courtney Clark wrote a post titled Me in the Center.  She raised the question of narcissism in blogging.  Aren't we all just a little bit narcissistic?  Isn't that a part of why we blog? Do I think I have something important to share?  Sometimes.  Do I know anything?  Not really.  Does Emerson?  Who was he to shake up my day?  Does it matter if I quote other people?

So I ask you, dear bloggers, what do you know, think or feel?  Would you like to share?   

P.S.  I know this took me over an hour to write and now I will be late for work.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

From Love Letter

"Tree and stone glittered, without shadows.

My finger length grew lucent as glass.
I started to bud like a March twig:
An arm and a leg, an arm, a leg.

From stone to cloud, so I ascended." --Sylvia Plath

If you want to see gorgeous pictures of skies from all over the world, check here.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


"We have more possibilities available in each moment than we realize."  --Thich Nhat Hanh

A lilac bud

An aspen leaf in the making

A little bit of green grass and maybe a bug or two?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Vernal turns 100 years old

It's a new birthday suit for T-Rex!

Cake anyone?

For more shots from around the world, check out My World Tuesday.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Thai Scenery

There are no pretty blooms in my yard today, so I'll post some from Thailand instead--it's so much more exotic anyway.

A stop for lunch here.

And it's always fun to see a train!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Thai Sky

The King's Palace in Bangkok is a spectacular place to view the sky.

For more skies of many hues, look here.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

What would you rather have?

"I'd rather have roses on my table than diamonds on my neck." 
 --Emma Goldman

Me too.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Prayers flags, snow, wind and sun

What a day!  Today I attended the 8th District Juvenile Court Child Welfare Summit.  With dwindling budgets and increased workloads our task is to determine how to provide and improve service delivery to children who have been abused and neglected, those who struggle with substance abuse issues and criminal charges, who live in and out of foster care.  On the positive side something good could happen in our community because there were 80 people registered who care about kids and want them to live in healthy and safe families.  Can we do it?  I hope so.

I came home, got online for stress management purposes and noticed it was time to post something for My World Tuesday.  I had hoped to get another entertaining dinosaur picture but guess what?  It didn't happen, maybe next week.

So, I walked out to my porch which faces north and took some late afternoon pictures of the prayer flags, snow and sun.  Prayer flags have Buddhist prayers printed on them and the wind sends those prayers out into the world.  When we were talking about them last night, my daughter's boyfriend said most aptly, "We need more flags." 

"May you be at peace, 
May your heart remain open,
May you awaken to the light of your own true nature,
May you be healed.

May you be a source of healing for all beings."

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Land of the Thunder Dragon

Another Scenic Sunday shot from Bhutan shows the dramatic landscape after a rainstorm.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Sometimes it snows in April

Today is my birthday and I have now been on the planet for 56 years.  My first reaction was to consider myself on the downhill slide to 60 and to make self-deprecating remarks about getting OLD.  But events of the week have caused me to seriously reconsider.  A friend of mine, quite healthy and fit, died unexpectedly on Tuesday as a result of surgical complications.  I saw her alive and happy Friday night, as did many other friends who attended a Celebration of Life party.  It is an annual event to celebrate the life of another friend no longer with us.  Now Ann is gone too and we are all reeling and saddened, concerned for her husband and closest companions.

No matter how long 56 years might seem sometimes, it is really fleeting.  When I was young, life seemed to stretch out ahead of me into some kind of infinite realm of possibility.  Now looking backwards I'm thinking that time seems very short.  I have accomplished some things and there are things I still want to do but wonder if I will.

I woke up this morning to a surprising amount of new snow.  It's April and it's supposed to be spring.  Actually, it is springtime in the Rockies which means that it can snow any time.  It is quite beautiful even if it isn't what I wanted.  What I want usually isn't all that important in the great scheme of things.  It's only the little desires of my ego pecking away at my serenity.  

The snow won't last.  The flowers will bloom.  The trees will be green.  Just not today. 

But today, the male finches are turning yellow and they are beautiful.

"What is life?  It is the flash of a firefly in the night.
It is the breath of a buffalo in the winter time.
It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset."

--Crowfoot, April 1890

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Castle Cove

This is the mountain I consider "mine."  Esther will know what I mean.  I see it every day from my southern windows, drive by it every day, watch it change colors with the seasons and the weather and the sun.  It's beautiful and special but really belongs to the Bureau of Land Management.  They don't know  it but it's mine.

For more beautiful skies around the world, check here.