Alex’s Third Birthday

Alex’s Third Birthday

Last May, when we were visiting the grandkids in Northern California, I let little Alex “borrow” my little pocket sized Canon A710S. At 2½ years old, he managed to take a few good photos among the messed-up ones you might expect from a kid that age.

So, for his birthday today, we sent him a Kid Zoom Camera designed for kids 3 to 8 years old. The photo above shows him with his new camera just after opening it.

Photo via FecesBook™ posted by my eldest granddaughter. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Reconnoitering a Local Crafts and Gift Shop

Verna with Metal Sculptures

We took the dogs to the groomer today and afterwards we drove up US 60 the short distance to check out a tourist-y shop that had changed hands since the last time we were there several years ago. We finally had the opportunity to take a look. The sign outside the store says “Collectables and Gifts, Southwestern Decor, Garden Pottery and Nursery.” Yep, it was all of that, but terribly overpriced (for the most part) and dealing with mostly imported goods and not necessarily “southwestern made” stuff.

It was fun to look around the stuff, some of it quite nice (but too expensive for what it is) and colorful to boot. Verna posed with some metallic sculptures in the outdoor portion of the place. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Nineteenth Wedding Anniversary

Bracelet

Today is the nineteenth anniversary of our wedding day. We were married in the City of Avalon on Catalina Island. Dozens of friends and family were in attendance.

In addition to the 19th anniversary gemstone aquamarine bracelet shown above, Verna has another turquoise and silver rope bracelet. The latter two were purchased locally while the AQ came in the mail from an on-line vendor. Next year is the Emerald anniversary.

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Black Butterfly Browsing Red Bird Flowers

Butterfly Browsing Flowers

As the summer season winds to a close, the Red Bird of Paradise Flowers continue to attract hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. I captured this lovely black butterfly in my camera as the little critter lit on one of the flowers in the courtyard.

Click on the image to enlarge.

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Devil’s Tongue Cactus Flowers

Devil’s Tongue Cactus Flowers

When we got back from our three-week vacation, we discovered that the Devil’s Tongue Barrel Cactus was covered with flowers and buds. It is sure to put on a good show as second spring arrives in our part of Arizona.

This cactus was in a pot when we lived in California, but now it is in the ground in my rock and cactus garden. It sure seems happy to be in the Arizona Desert!

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Painted Desert Panorama

Painted Desert Panorama

We briefly stopped at Petrified Forest National Park this morning on our way to view the All American Solar Eclipse. Our route takes us by several interesting and beautiful places. This panoramic image was made from five 1.333 aspect images combined into the wide-angle view.

Click on the image to enlarge for the full sized panorama. Use the scroll bars to view.

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Cumulus and Cactus

Cumulus and Cactus

Verna took this photo today of some cumulus clouds building up east of us with the big saguaro and ocotillo in the foreground. We have been getting storms since Thursday of this week and expect them to continue until Monday according to the National Weather Service.

This evening, we are surrounded by thunder cells with lightning very frequent. We were out in the courtyard a few minutes ago when the International Space Station passed overhead and visible to us through the gaps in the clouds. Very entertaining!

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