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Photo: San Fernando Valley Evening via #instagram

April 29th, 2014 No comments

 San Fernando Valley Evening via Instagram

San Fernando Valley Evening

Photo posted via Instagram 

Previously in my Instagram Photos…

See all my photos on Flickr


Categories: California, LA, Los Angeles, Photos Tags:

Photo: Purple Orchid from the Southern California Spring Garden Show 2014 via #instagram

April 29th, 2014 No comments

 Purple orchid

Photo posted via Instagram at the Southern California Spring Garden Show 2014

Previously in my Instagram Photos…

See all my photos on Flickr


Categories: Garden, Photos Tags:

A windy day and night – End of the Day for April 28, 2014

April 28th, 2014 No comments

End of the day Logo

It has been a hot and windy day here in Van Nuys. Not quite a full-on Santa Ana condition, but similar. The temperature rose into the 90′s and the trees swayed wildly, bumping to the house on occasion. I took it as an opportunity, as I often do, to air out the house. Windows were opened throughout and let the wind bluster about inside. It was only around 9pm that it started to get cool enough that I decided to close them. It probably won’t get that cold tonight, but probably cooler than I would want it for sleeping.

Windswept tree - Photo-A-Day Nov 20, 2006

Wind-shaped pine tree

I don’t quite know why, but I have always love windy days. Sure, in the Winter it can get too cold to be enjoyable, but the buffeting of the wind on warmer days is always a treat. Maybe it is the wild chaotic movement of the trees and plants. I think it is similar to waterfalls, rivers and ocean waves in that regard. There is something about the unpredictable nature of it all that intrigues and captivates the human mind. I would watch the trees sway for hours and listen to the rush of the wind through the leaves.

Of course, warm winds here in Southern California can bring the scourge of wildfire, too, so my nose is constantly tuned to the acrid, sour-smelling smell of burning chaparral. Living here in the middle of the San Fernando Valley I don’t have much worry of actually facing a wildfire, but they have burned in the hills around us year after year. From here you can see and smell the smoke and sometimes even see the flames, especially at night. Fire has always been a part of this land since it was created, but human habitation provides more sources of ignition and also more damage to life and property when it does occur. I would love to live in the hills, but I know that I would have to be able to lose all the contents of my home to wildfire without much concern. That state of mind is difficult to find, though, so I remain here in the significantly less picturesque, but much safer from fire valley floor.

Weathermap windy

Wind bars on the Wundermap weather map

The wind is supposed to bang around most of tonight and tomorrow. It sometimes keeps us awake, but the windows in the older part of the house block most of the sound. We awake to the scattered and drifted leaves, small limbs dropped from the trees and the occasional piece of litter that has blown into the yard. The sky, though, is typically bright and clear and deep blue — most of the polluting haze blown away, at least for a short time.

For now, I sit and listen as the wind goes bump in the night and imagine what it might be carrying where on its travel.

Previously on End of the Day:

Categories: End-of-the-Day, Writing Tags:

Photo: Garden mask and Japanese Maples | A Gardener’s Notebook via Instagram

April 28th, 2014 No comments

Photo posted via Instagram

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Photo: Garden mask and Japanese Maples | A Gardener’s Notebook via Instagram

April 28th, 2014 No comments

Photo posted via Instagram at the Southern California Spring Garden Show 2014

Previously in my Instagram Photos…

See all my photos on Flickr



Categories: Garden, Photos Tags: , ,

What I’m Reading…Mary Colter: Builder Upon the Red Earth (Grand Canyon Association)

April 28th, 2014 No comments

Mary Colter: Builder Upon the Red Earth (Grand Canyon Association)

I have always been fascinated with the various buildings at the Grand Canyon and now I know much more about their designer, Mary Colter. If you have ever visited the Canyon, you cannot help but see her work as it spans the park from Hopi Tower at Desert View on the east side to Hermit’s Rest on the west. Colter also created many other buildings throughout the Southwest for the Harvey Company.

Categories: Art, Books, History, What I'm Reading... Tags:

What you may not know – End of the Day for April 27, 2014

April 27th, 2014 No comments

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Even if you have known me for a while – either in person or online – there might still be a few things you don’t know about me. While I have been in LA for 28 years, I had another 22 years back in New London, Ohio and. Bowling Green, Ohio. New London is a town of about 2000 people and most of my family still live in that area. It is a quintessential small town with struggling downtown, hard working folks and quiet back road — some that are still paved in gravel to this day. This might explain why I have a relative antipathy to the big city, even though I have lived here for many years.

Newlondonohio map

While I lived in “town” and not on a farm, I spent many, many hours on the farms that surrounded the town. I drove tractors like this John Deere Model 60 or Allis Chalmers tractor and even large combines, the size of big rig trucks. I carted grain to the local elevator to sell, riding in the wagon of soybeans, corn or what for the fun of it. I baled hay and stuffed iit nto the hay lofts, choking on the dust and chaff on some of the hottest days of the year.

Jd60 Allis chalmers

In school, I was a B student for the most part. I sang in the chorus, played trombone in the band and acted and sang in high school and community theater productions including Guys and Dolls, Oklahoma, South Pacific and more. This led to my continuing as a theater major in college and graduating with that degree.

It was at college, in. Bowling Green, where I had access to computers for the first time and discovered my aptitude for technology and helping others use it. I lived for 9 months in Cleveland prior to my wedding, doing a series of of jobs like working at a television and appliance store and working in the Box Office of the Playhouse Square Foundation. That led to years of technology work once I moved to LA in 1986, after my new wife and I left Ohio the day after our wedding. This June marks 28 years in Los Angeles, as well as 28 years of marriage. 

Is there anything here you didn’t already know? Hopefully you now know me a little bit better.

We all have our unique stories and sometimes it is worth rereading these stories with older – and perhaps more wizened– eyes. You never know exactly what you might see there that you hadn’t seen before.

Previously on End of the Day:

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Photo: Fear… Remember that when people lash out at something, it is out of fear. Fear of change. Fear of the new. Fear of their place in the world. Help them to not be afraid. via Instagram

April 27th, 2014 No comments
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Photo: Orchids at SoCal Spring Garden Show 2014 | A Gardener’s Notebook via Instagram

April 27th, 2014 No comments

Photo posted via Instagram

Previously in my Instagram Photos…

See all my photos on Flickr

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Just another work day at home — End of the Day for April 26, 2014

April 26th, 2014 No comments

End of the day LogoWorking for yourself — in a home office — is always a bit odd, no matter how long you have done it. I have been working out of the home office for years, but today was one of those days where you aren’t really sure what day of the week it is. After our trip to garden show yesterday I have almost 200 photos and 84 video clips to sort through, select, edit, upload and blog. Since Rosanne and Joseph were off at the Botball tourney today, I had the house to myself. So instead of a Saturday, it might as well have been a Monday. I had a little breakfast and immediately set to work. About 8 hours later, they returned, we had dinner and settled in for a relatively normal evening gaming, watching TV and reading.

My office today

Not my typical office day…but sort of (SMILE)

Of course, one benefit I have that traditional workers don’t is that I can decide to take off in the middle of the week, if I want. I have a collection of tasks that need to be done everyday — blogging, posting photos. answering comments, etc — but once those are done, I can decide to walk up to the coffee shop, do a little thinking and chill for while. Then again, in this situation, you also have to force yourself to take these breaks every so often. It can be way to easy to work, work, work, as there is always something that needs to be or should be done. I am always coming up with more idea than I can possibly implement, but this also means a ready reserve of “projects” to be started if I decide to go down the work “rabbit hole.”

Tomorrow, I think, will be a more traditional Sunday “day of rest” and all that. The family is all home except for one short church event, so it will be a time to relax and prep for the coming week. I always keep my calendar in week mode, as this is the way I think about my life. I like to know what is expected in the next 7 days. Looking 1 day out is too short a time frame and my monthly calendar is so full of events I can see them all in month view!

Another trip to Santa Cruz Island

This week is looking pretty open, although we have our second trip to Santa Cruz Island this coming Saturday. We are visiting a different part of the island, so it won’t just be a repeat of our previous trip. That said, I love to get out on the ocean whenever I can. I don’t really have the desire (or funds) to own a boat myself, so when these trips arise I am always inclined to go. Add to this the fact that the trips are planned and hosted by some good friends and it makes it almost a no-brainer to sign up.

You can see my photos and video from our first trip in the links below. I think there might be a few seats left on this trip, if you are interested. Drop me a line and I will check the availability. It is a great chance to set foot on one of our less visited National Parks.

Photos: Trip to Santa Cruz Island with Friends of the Island Fox

Places LA: Video: A Trip to Santa Cruz Island with Friends of the Island Fox

Previously on End of the Day:

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