Spring … A Time of New Beginnings

AAAH. SPRING IS HERE AND, ooooh, I’m loving it! Flowers are in bloom, trees are leafing out–brand spankin’ new green growth. And there’s pollen everywhere. Yellow stuff from the pines and oaks

Pollen Abounds

My poor cars … this is my *red* truck’s tonneau, but the whole thing is covered in pollen.

cover my car, the driveway and any relatively flat surface.

My allergies … oooh, they just love this time of year (not). They act up 24/7 … 365 days of the year, but spring is a special time. Sneezing, coughing, puffy and itchy eyes dominate—even with my allergy meds. Ugh. But, because it is such a beautiful time of renewal, I ignore my symptoms as much as possible, throw aside all caution (well … mostly) and revel in the celebration of fresh, vibrant colours and new life that abounds.

Then, there’s the new “batch” of babies–birds,Curious Fawn fawns, chicks … I cannot believe how blessed I am to see all of these things–or have friends that share their precious finds. I live in such an amazing place where I can see ocean, meadows, rolling hills and mountains–all within an hours drive. I can enjoy old and new facades sharing space together–there are three or more California missions within that hours drive plus many historic Birds and Wavesbuildings on the Monterey Peninsula; lakes, rivers and streams that haven’t run much in the last five years because of our drought are now refreshed with the heavy rains and a delight to look at, walk or swim in or boat upon. Lake El Estero, which borders on Dennis the Menace Park Spring Flowers Caterpiller on Lilac(once was a very cool park … until they started—one by one—removing the coolest of the structures for safety’s sake. And the statue of Dennis was stolen!), has paddle boats that I might have to try out–haven’t been on one since my husband, young daughter and I had adventures … so long ago. This Monterey County area holds so many memories … it really is wonderful–my little paradise.

Time for the new beginnings. Just as the first of the year is the traditional time to make “promises of change” (aka: New Year resolutions), I find spring a wonderful time to begin anew in my artistic pursuits–photography (with all that entails), Paper-folding Art Calligraphy Practice Calligraphyart in its many forms—including classes and workshops at Open Ground Studios, gardening (creative ideas to make my yard fun) and writing–since my energy levels are naturally higher Writing ... Editing ...(sniggle … along with my allergies–sigh). My mind is beginning to reel with ideas which gets me excited now, if I can keep the energy high for a while, whilst I wait to I get my body back in shape. Write … right? … and edit!

May this day … this week, and this glorious month have delightful, blessed surprises for you around each corner. Cheers!






I’VE FOUND THE INTERNET a little on the dismal side these days … what with the Great Debate about who to vote for (with all the mudslinging), the gender bashing, the violence … you name it, it’s happening. Way over the top. And I’ve grown very tired of it.

So, I’m going to avoid all of that. I don’t need that in my life right now. I’m trying to get my head wrapped around words. Words I’ve written that need editing. And images. I need to get my head wrapped around images I’ve photographed. Images that need to become works of art. Lots of things are waiting for that to happen.

But until I can do that—and there is a glimmer of hope that I’ll be back to doing all that very soon—I decided to go for a walk on Wednesday and take snapshots of pretty things along the way. So this blog is about that — walking, enjoying, taking a moment to stop and smell the flowers—even if only as an catchphrase …

I haven’t done much walking since my surgery. I’ve been reluctant, mostly because of the exhaustion I’ve experienced after little forays into life. So, when I knew my neighbor was not going to be available to take me over to pick up my truck after it was services … well, I was a wee bit anxious about making the jaunt over on foot. I’d done it before. Many times. No big deal—but I’d also been taking two-plus mile walks on a regular basis. I haven’t done that in three-plus months. That’s a long time for muscles to atrophy, right?

So, I started out—deciding that I’d take my time, use the Starbucks as a way station on the way over (if necessary) to recoup some energy. And, along the way, search for flowers to take picture of—forgetting that we are in the midst of summer … and a drought, so there were very few flowers. Weeds, yes. Garden-variety flowers, not so much. But that’s okay. The tenacity and vibrance of “weed” flowers was welcoming. They are so delicate — yet, manage to survive where to manicured flowers fail. I didn’t take a shot of mustard — not entirely sure why, but I did get the dainty

Horseradish Flower

It’s seen better days … but still, it is a pretty little thing.

horseradish bloom. And dandelion.


Lots of these along the way …

And quite a few others. I did find a few flowering garden plants up at the shopping center … and the rock rose planted along the overpass section.

Lily of the Nile

Can’t grow these in the yard … the deer love them.

More Dandelions

Dandelions … can’t tell if they are the same, just different stages. Hmm…

The wild roses were past their prime, so I skipped them. I can never remember the name of the sturdy — and very tall — bush with yellow

Yellow ... Very Yellow

Don’t know why I can’t remember it’s name!

flowers, but it catches my eye every time I make this walk.

By the time I made it to the mechanic’s shop, I was revitalises — Rock Roseyet exhausted –from my walk. Kind of an odd combination, don’t you think? I think the fatigue won in the end. I paid for the servicing of my truck and melted into the drivers seat to recover a bit before driving home.

Diedes at the Shopping Center

Different from what grows in my garden—like mine better …

Home. And a nap.

Now, I am thinking about my story … a first glimmer of hope for the story to come alive in my mind, once again. This is a good thing.

That was on Wednesday. Thursday was to be another wanderlust day to grab more photos, but the weather and our raging forest fire rained on my parade. The fog locked in all the smoke below the marine layer and they were saying the parts per million was upwards to 500—100-300 is unsafe for us folks to be in—as far north as Santa Cruz … so, needless to say, after a mandatory doctor’s appointment, I beat a quick retreat to my safe haven of locked doors and windows at home. The smoke still filtered in a little. Today was much better, so I did some errands that I couldn’t do yesterday, driving up Hwy 68 to get back home. I’d forgotten that the fire departments had taken over Toro Park as a staging area for the Big Sur area Soberantes Fire (this is a huge fire—well over 65,000 acres and only 55+/-% contained) … and all along the road were placards, cardboard signs and fancy plastic printed signs the size of a car, all saying thank you to the firefighters. From Monterey, all the way into Salinas. Their number increased, the closer to Toro Park I got. The shear volume peppering the side of the roadway made this humble soul tear up with each sign I saw. “Thank you”. “We love you”. “You are heroes”. “We love you, firefighters” … I would love to share some of the photos of the fire—they are terrifyingly beautiful … but they are easy enough to Google. I don’t think I could have pulled over to get even one of the thank you signs, as traffic and my blurred vision (from tears) hindered me enough.

But this. This outpouring of love is what I absolutely love to see. Nature is always beautiful … but to see the magnitude of love and care put into these signs—fills my heart with joy. It truly made my day.

There is a good side to humanity. It’s a pity it takes such tragic events for it to shine so brightly. Need I say more …?

Let me wish you an amazing weekend … and a blessed week ahead. Now, I’m going to go see the newest remake of Pete’s Dragon (came out today!)