Tuesday, September 20, 2016


A few years ago, SWMBO and I took a drive over to visit our friends Tom and Lana in California.

The occasion was one of Lana's many art shows.

As you can see, Lana experiments in a variety of styles.

Notice the frames on this wine-inspired collection are made of wine corks.

She's also a champion bread baker.

Her husband, Tom, is a colleague from many years ago in Indianapolis radio.

Here he's explaining something to Griff, another friend from those radio days.

Of course if you visit friends who live on the coast you have to check out the ocean.

Naturally, I found some of the avian life of interest.

And there were some wonders of the mammalian world to view.

Elephant seals come, year after year, to this same spot to spawn their young.

It makes for a very popular tourist attraction.

It may have been California but these Arizona heat-dwellers found it a bit on the chilly side at times.

As usual, this dry-land person never wanted to leave the seashore.

Good friends, wonderful hospitality, a great visit.

Monday, September 19, 2016


I was just looking back in my blog and found this picture from November 2008.

Election night in Chicago with a new President-elect and his family.

I think, as President Obama's time in the White House comes to a close that he did a pretty good job for a man facing such opposition for eight years.

Sunday, September 18, 2016


Some random cloud shots taken from a moving car.

These were over the Verde Valley on our recent road trip.

SWMBO took the next two on the road up the mountain from Jerome, also overlooking the Verde Valley but from the other side.

The last one was taken as we passed the viewpoint just above Jerome.

Nice contrast with the mountainside in the foreground and the Red Rocks of Sedona in the far distance.

Saturday, September 17, 2016


I've had this picture in a standby file for months and decided to use it today.

When I posted it here and blew it up I noticed for the first time (I think) that there is a hummingbird zooming in on the feeder.

I'd never noticed that before.

When I cropped it down and blew it up further my suspicion was confirmed.

It appears to be a female Anna's or Black-chinned hummingbird though it's difficult to tell from this photograph.

It looks more like the Black-chinned because the female of the species doesn't have a black chin while the female of the Anna's does, strangely enough.

At least that's what the illustrations in my new bird guide show me.

For the first time I have a guide to birds found specifically in my area.

It's new and if you're in the Prescott area it's available at Jay's Bird Barn.

(Disclaimer: I have no connection with the store or the creator of the product.  Darn it.)

Friday, September 16, 2016


I was talking with a long-ago former colleague on the telephone last night and he asked me what I did these days.

(We've both been retired for awhile.)

I said that I blogged and spent most of my day on the computer, I read and occasionally I cook.

There was silence on his end.




You say it's time for the Friday Funnies!

O.K. Gentle Readers, I've had my fun.

Was it good for you?

Have a roller coaster of fun this weekend, thanks for the many contributions and always remember to keep laughing!

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

(Where did she go anyway?

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


The mosquitoes around the Taylor manor have been vicious this year.

Normally I am the magnet while SWMBO seems immune.

But this year we've both been the victims of the nasty little critters.

I don't know if that's one of the biters or not in the photo above but I wasn't taking any chances.

The picture was taken through the glass of a sliding door as it lurked on the outside.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


Yesterday, at SWMBO's suggestion, we went on a mini Road Trip.

It had been awhile.

I picked the route and we headed over to I-17 and down the hill to the Verde Valley.

"Verde" means green in Spanish and it definitely was after a summer of quite a bit of rain.

That's Mingus Mountain in the distance capping off Arizona's version of the Black Hills.

Prickly Pear cactus, like the one in the foreground of this photo, were growing in abandon alongside the road as we headed from Camp Verde up to the higher elevations to the east.

We were following the General Crook Trail, which as this plaque tells, was first blazed west in 1871; later improved for wagons in 1874 and became the main route between Camp Verde and Fort Apache in the White Mountains.

Our destination was the cool country of the mighty Ponderosa pines.

This photo was taken near the top as we began our descent.

That light spot in the center of all that green is the highway far below us.

Huge canyons dot the area with even more mountains visible in the distance.

We were headed for the small unincorporated community of Strawberry, which is comprised of many vacation cabins for "the rich folks" down in Greater Phoenix.

But regardless of their income, they all have to get their mail in the same place.

The mail service is shared with the town of Pine, just three miles further down the mountain.

Some people mark their property lines with gates and security cameras and guard dogs.

Others have a different idea.

We found one man working on his decor, perhaps a bit more welcoming.

The log-built Strawberry schoolhouse claims to be the oldest such one-room structure still standing in Arizona.

It's a museum now, available for scheduled tours.

After touring Strawberry and Pine we headed back the way we had come.

We had scene an odd formation on the way up and stopped on our return for a couple of photos.

Our imaginations ran a little wild as we thought of the early days and perhaps Indians atop this fortress watching as the United States troops invaded their native lands.

I thought of the history of Israel and nicknamed it Masada.

A further descent through the tiny community of Clear Creek, a picnic at the historical Camp Verde grounds and then a return through Cottonwood and Jerome and these two tired travelers were home by late afternoon.

It was a good day.

Friday, September 9, 2016


Happy Friday, Gentle Readers.

Today marks the Dog Days of the Friday Funnies.

Oh, no, they're not going anywhere.

It's just that . . .

Well, take a look.

But wait!

Oh dear, who to believe?

While I muse on that, Gentle Readers, go ye out and have yourself an incredibly soul-satisfying weekend and remember: always keep laughing.

Here, kitty-kitty . . .

(oh, man . . .)