NOW THIS:

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Boomie gets dressed


Um.... okay, half-dressed.
Pants optional.

Voluptuous roots


In between the mushrooms and the bees, I came upon a little patch of trees with fabulously sexy, intertwining roots.







They had a sign that labeled them as Oak Leaf Papaya, native to South America.
It also said "small edible fruit, not very tasty".
I'll take their word for it.

Mushroom village

Take a good, soaking rain, like we had last week. Follow that with some nice warm weather, like we had this week. And here's what we get:






One of these days I'm going to post a big long list of all the silly things that I find so delightful.
Like mushroom villages.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Also belated


Marley celebrated her 5 year anniversary with us this month, as well as her 10th birthday.
Here she is doing what she likes best: snoozin' on the couch.


Love you, Mar-mar.

Just a coincidence....that made my day!

I don't know why it should, but it does.

I won't go into the whole backstory, but for a few months now I've been working one-on-one with a little boy at school. Despite his apparent disadvantages, he is energetic, inquisitive, and loves to go to school. Needless to say, I've gotten pretty fond of him.

One of our jobs is reading. He has a reading chart, and every time he reads one of his little stories from his phonics book, he gets to put a sticker on the chart. A week or so ago, he asked if he could have one of the stickers that said Happy Birthday.

"Well, this is a birthday sticker", I told him. "When is your birthday?"

The poor little guy doesn't know when his birthday is. Today I remembered to ask his teacher when his birthday is, so if it's at all possible, we can make sure he gets the special birthday sticker on his special day (and maybe a cupcake). She took me to the file in the office and pulled out his papers.

November 4th.

That's my birthday too!

I'm bummed, though, that the date has already passed, and his being so behind in language/social skills/school in general, will make it hard for him to relate to when it is/was, nevermind that my birthday is/was the same day.

I just hope I get a chance to wish him a happy birthday when it rolls around again in another 9+
months.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

A few things from the arboretum


Aloe blooms



The textured skin of a caudiciform plant that I had never noticed before.


My computer recently upgraded to Picasa 3. It lets you do a little more tweaking to photos than the older Picasa. So this is a highly tweaked patch of cactus, just for fun!



A little cochineal + a little scaly stuff = some nice texture on a cactus pad.



This beautiful blooming kalanchoe was growing up in the middle of an ugly, gnarled, cochineal-infected patch of cactus.


Some interesting nodules of cactus growth.


Our famous Ombu tree. I actually went to the arboretum today especially to check on it, because it hasn't been pruned in over a year, and now it is at greater risk of blowing over in the storms we are expecting. I was hoping to find that the grounds crew might have trimmed it this week in anticipation of the coming winds, but I was disappointed to see they had not. In fact, this is as close as I came to the Ombu today, because there were many children playing loudly around its mighty roots. You can't see them at all in the picture, because of the jungle around the base of the tree, but trust me, they were in there. It sounded almost as if they were having some kids's birthday party in there.

Some days when I stroll the gardens, I wear my arboretum badge, so if the occasion arises for me to talk to some visitors (or scold their children for picking fruit or harrassing the ducks), I can do so in an official capacity as a docent, and not simply as some nosy lady. But I didn't have my badge today, and so I gave the Ombu area a wide berth, hoping it would be none the worse for being used yet again as an exotic playground, but mostly hoping that it will still be there when the storms are over.





Stuff in my yard


This was a few days ago, early in the morning.




My nandina, very colorful right now.



Like fall.


This is from a scrap of broken plant that I rescued after our big plant sale last spring. It's very pink.


Here's why I can't find Wheatena anymore

Cereal Killers?

Maybe it's been more than a year since I last bought some.

Friday, January 15, 2010

In search of: Wheatena

My favorite hot cereal for about 50 years. I usually eat it in winter. Haven't bought it since last winter. Didn't see it on the store shelf today. I can still buy it on Amazon, but I'm hoping I can still find it somewhere locally.

What I have to look forward to next week

From the NOAA website:



SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN DIEGO CA
159 PM PST FRI JAN 15 2010

CAZ042-043-048-050-055>058-060>062-162200-
ORANGE COUNTY COASTAL AREAS-SAN DIEGO COUNTY COASTAL AREAS-
SAN BERNARDINO AND RIVERSIDE COUNTY VALLEYS-THE INLAND EMPIRE-
SAN DIEGO COUNTY VALLEYS-SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY MOUNTAINS-
RIVERSIDE COUNTY MOUNTAINS-SANTA ANA MOUNTAINS AND FOOTHILLS-
SAN DIEGO COUNTY MOUNTAINS-APPLE AND LUCERNE VALLEYS-
COACHELLA VALLEY-SAN DIEGO COUNTY DESERTS-
159 PM PST FRI JAN 15 2010

...BIG CHANGES IN THE WEATHER NEXT WEEK...

A SERIES OF STORMS WILL BRING PERIODS OF LOCALLY HEAVY RAIN AND
STRONG WINDS NEXT WEEK WITH SNOW AT THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS.

THERE IS STILL A LOT OF UNCERTAINTY ABOUT THE EXACT TIMING AND
RAINFALL AMOUNTS...BUT THESE STORMS HAVE THE POTENTIAL TO BE QUITE
VIGOROUS...AND BRING LARGE RAINFALL TOTALS TO THE LOWER ELEVATIONS
AND HEAVY SNOW TO THE MOUNTAINS.

THIS ALL WEEK LONG EVENT HAS THE POTENTIAL TO GENERATE RAINFALL OF 5
TO 8 INCHES NEAR THE COAST...TO 20 OR MORE INCHES ON THE COASTAL
MOUNTAIN SLOPES. TYPICALLY WETTER LOCATIONS ON THE COASTAL MOUNTAINS
SLOPES COULD RECEIVE 30 OR MORE INCHES OF RAINFALL. EVEN THE DESERT
LOCATIONS ARE LIKELY TO RECEIVE BETWEEN 2 AND 4 INCHES OF RAIN.

SNOW LEVELS WILL MOSTLY FLUCTUATE BETWEEN 5500 AND 6500 FEET WHICH
WOULD CONFINE HEAVY SNOW ACCUMULATIONS TO THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS IN
THE SAN BERNARDINO AND SAN JACINTO MOUNTAINS. AROUND 4 FEET OF
SNOWFALL IS POSSIBLE AT THE HEAVIEST LOCATIONS.

WITH THE RAINFALL AMOUNTS EXPECTED...THERE IS HIGH LIKELIHOOD
OF FLASH FLOODING...ALONG WITH MUD AND DEBRIS FLOWS...ESPECIALLY IN
AND BELOW RECENTLY BURNED AREAS. THERE COULD ALSO BE ROCK SLIDES
ALONG MOUNTAIN HIGHWAYS...MAKING TRAVEL IMPASSABLE AT TIMES.

THE HEAVY SNOW FALL AMOUNTS EXCEPTED...THERE IS A POSSIBILITY OF
AVALANCHES FOR AREAS LOCATED BELOW THE STEEPER SLOPES OF THE HIGHER
SAN BERNARDINO AND SAN JACINTO MOUNTAINS.

THE STRENGTH OF THE JET STREAM DRIVING THESE STORMS IS OVER 200 MPH
AND THE STORMS THEMSELVES WILL BE MOVING RAPIDLY ONSHORE IN QUICK
SUCCESSION.

AS A RESULT THERE ARE LIKELY TO BE STRONG WINDS THROUGH MUCH OF NEXT
WEEK. OVER THE COASTAL WATERS GALE FORCE OR HIGHER WINDS ARE
EXPECTED. OVER LAND...DAMAGING WINDS ARE LIKELY TO PRECEDE THE
ARRIVAL OF EACH STORM. WIND GUSTS BETWEEN 50 AND 60 MPH ARE POSSIBLE
FOR THE COASTS AND VALLEYS...WHILE THE MOUNTAINS AND DESERTS MAY
HAVE GUSTS 70 MPH OR HIGHER.

PEOPLE SHOULD STAY UPDATED WITH THE LATEST FORECASTS. LISTEN TO NOAA
WEATHER RADIO OR VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT WEATHER.GOV/SANDIEGO FOR THE
LATEST UPDATES OF FORECASTS AND WARNINGS.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Spring is just around the corner

Spotted some cute towels in my local Kohl's today, prompting a little stealth photography:

(bummer, I chopped off the end of the birdie's tail, though)




Some cute bugs, too!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

T shirt art ideas

I have been working on my long-procrastinated idea of designing a new T shirt for the nature guides at the arboretum. Here's my progression so far.

The basic design


The pinecone enlarged.


In color, black borders



Colored borders.





White on green.





Green on white.

Maybe I'll run these up the flagpole tomorrow and see who salutes.