Friday, February 21, 2014

It seems spring is in the air already here in the desert.
We've had 2 weeks of temperatures in the mid-to high 80's (around 26-28C) and yesterday it made it to 91(30C) at 5pm!

Birds are singing everywhere and I'm trying to get pictures and identify them but the little buggers just don't want to sit still, do they?
There's a fine line how close you can get to each one and I'm still learning to 'read' them. They'll be singing their little hearts out and let me approach for a little while but than, just when I finally locate them and point the camera, they'll stop and fly away!

But I've got a few for you. Here we go ..


First up, same as above, a rock wren. I just love the red cactus thorns! Well, not really, but you know what I mean.
Perfect camouflage if you're a Rock Wren!

And here's Mr and Mrs Roadrunner .....

Talking about camouflage ....

....... and a couple of Meadowlarks, I think they're the 'Eastern' variety, because they're quite dark, but it's so hard to tell (and they're back-lit)!


A whole bunch of White-crowned Sparrows

And 'something' rustling in the reeds .... where? ... there! ... huh? ... quick ... shoot!... there he goes!!

Someones prime real estate ...

These were all taken at the golf course. James went shooting balls and I'm shooting birds these days. 
I've hurt my rotator cuff, I'm afraid it's torn, and can not make a swing anymore. I haven't hit a ball for 2 months now and besides keeping my shoulder 'mobile' by doing some light exercises, I've been babying it.
It's not as painful as it was but I think (and read) that I still have a long ways to go!

In the dead tree next to the rig I spotted these two White-winged Doves, wanting to know, as always,


And than there's this dog that always looks away as soon as you point the camera? Talking about camera shy indeed.

Ha! Got ye!


Sadie and Merlin eating and drinking side by side. They're so cute when they're good ...


Merlin waiting for James to come home for lunch. As soon as I set out the plates he's on them. Sort of a 'natural' plate warmer.
(His is the small one in front!)

Sorry, but I did some baking again ;-)

Upside down Pineapple Cake (for the non-Americans here)

See the moon rising on the left there? And James' head/hat on top of the BBQ :-)?
It barely cools down in the evening so we're eating outside most of the time. Hard to believe that a few weeks ago we'd wake up to 26F (-3C) and the daytime high was barely 40(5C)!
Having said that (and let me mention also that I changed our sheets from flannel to 'normal') it's probably going to freeze again soon!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Another spectacular winter sunrise
How time flies! Another 2 weeks gone! And February already!
It's not that I'm very busy or that too much is happening that keeps me from writing but I don't seem to get anything 'on paper' these days.

Anywho. Let me try to pick myself up and get something going here.

I try to take a walk (on the wild side) every day and find some nice scenery or wildlife to enjoy.
Not too difficult around here.

These rock formations are right out of my back door and there are some easy hiking trails all around it.

Another trail close by is the Mesa de Anguila trail. 
Too long to hike in it's entirety but easy to follow for a while and cut back or to from the washes around the golf course.

Stone cairns are used at tricky places to mark the trail.

And although the weather is on the cool side there are still some little flowers like these Many-Flowered Goldeneye:

The birds are very 'flighty' (I guess it's a bird thing), but every now and than I get one or two to sit still enough for a while.


Like this Loggerhead Shrike ..

                                                     ..  or these Say's Phoebes

Another short hike behind the campground brought us to this natural arch:


The arch, or bridge, is made of red sand stone and is still eroding away. 
It will probably fall down in time.

The red of the rock is more vibrant in the evening hours. We were there around midday which washed out the color a little.

View towards Lajitas

There are a lot of small caves in this area and we were warned to be cautious around them since mountain lions are spotted here on a regular base!

James needed some supplies for the Resort (did I mention he's promoted to Maintenance Manager of the Employee Housing!), so we went on a trip to Alpine. It's an hour and a half away and besides a lumber yard it has a decent grocery store, a nice coffee shop, and some other stores as well so we did some more shopping.

And look what I found for $50 at the local Thrift store!

It's an Ashford Table Loom and by the looks of it it has never been used, I think it's brand new!

It conveniently folds up when not in use. Very handy indeed if you live in close quarters!
And here's the kicker ...  when I Googled it after we got home, I found out it's worth .... are you sitting down ... $600!
I knew it was a good find but .. holy smoke!

But why stop there?! Next to it stood this beautiful Louet Spinning Wheel!

It's an S15 and although discontinued since 2010 it's a great wheel!
One reason I like it is that it has enormous bobbins so they hold a lot, and also thicker, yarn.


Second reason; it has a small 'footprint'. Again, this comes in handy if you're in an RV and have to justify bringing in more 'stuff'!
And third; it's (the only wheel) made in Holland! I just get a kick out of that.
I paid $25 for it and although it is 25 years old (a stamp on the bottom said 06-88) it is still worth about $250 to $300!

Needless to say, I'm a very happy camper!

Sitting outside we often see some horses coming through our backyard. There's a horse trail that passes us by and although the local cowboys use it every now and than, more often it's a guide with a couple of tourists in tow.
It's such a nice way to explore this neighborhood.

To ride into the sunset ...


Or by the light of the (full) moon ...  
 Yipee-yi-ay, Yipee-yi-oh, Ghost Riders in ... the sky ......