before the storm

before the storm
The wind started to blow, which made me look out the window, which made me grab my camera, which made me run outside, which made me ever so grateful for our little home among the saguaros.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

a tablescape for the 4th...

It’s hot here. The rabbits are flattened out in the tree wells hoping to find some wet ground. The quail are all bunched together on the grass under the big mesquite tree, trying to find some cool. Daredevil doves are trying to ride the pool cleaner, hoping to get a drink. We just try to stay inside.


No picnicking on the grass on the 4th for us. No backyard barbeques on the patio. Well, we will probably be barbequing but we will definitely be eating inside.
The heat has faded most of my flowers. The roses are trying to hang on but the red ones aren’t happy right now. I decided to cut some crepe myrtle, thinking they would look a bit like a fireworks burst. Not so much… I don’t think I have ever used it inside before but it was the only white I have. I don’t think this will last until Sunday but I can always cut some more. I purposely kept the bouquet simple and a bit sparse. The laciness of the flowers seems to show better that way.



I got these vintage jello molds a few months ago. What actually constitutes vintage these days? It is a little disconcerting to see things in antique stores that I remember my mother having. I wasn’t sure what I would use them for or even why I wanted them. I used a few on my project table to hold little goodies. It wasn’t until after I had taken most of the photos that I thought of using them as candle holders. Does it work?


I love how different everything looks after dark.
Especially, during the blue hour...



For more tablescapes, please join Susan and everyone else at Tablescape Thursday.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

neutral palette tablescape...

It seems the hotter it gets, the more I want to have a light palette of colors surrounding me. This is typical of what appeals to me this time of year - tans, white, and just a hint of green. I wasn't happy to see these tulips drooping so soon after purchase but as the day has gone on, I find myself liking them that way. Tulips are irresistible to me, even out of season.





The small plates are a Rae Dunn retail design from years ago. I like the organic feel of these dishes with their uneven edges and bumpy look. I have some other pieces that go with these that will no doubt show up in another tablescape one day.











I am a happy girl if there is a lot of texture on the table.




















I hope you are keeping cool this summer!

Please join Susan and all the other tablescapers at Between Naps on the Porch.

Monday, June 21, 2010

summer soltice...
















Some may like it hot, but I don't. Waiting for the rainy season...

1/2 second, f/4, 35mm, ISO100, tripod

Friday, June 18, 2010

finding contentment...


1/250, f/2.8, ISO200, 100mm macro

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

ladybug picnic...






Isn’t it great how a little addition of salad plates can perk up things you already own? The hand painted details and raised ladybug were impossible to resist.



When I bought the plates, I was sure I would use them with a shade of green. I have several and all of them look good with the ladybugs. I also tried them with red plates which also looked good. When I tried the yellow, it just seemed to pop and set that summery mood.
These black wire candlesticks are so versatile. I have used them for formal and informal settings. I have little bits of red in my kitchen and this plant sits on the windowsill. I added a few black dots to the pot to make it look "ladybugish".

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Monday, June 14, 2010

wishing and hoping...


We are so blessed to have all kinds of wildlife that like to hang around our place. The list is long but our favorites are the bobcats.

The first time I saw one, I was home alone, not even certain of what I was seeing. The second time, M was here and with some looks through some books, we were certain of what we were seeing. K was going to have a party the next night and I was worried about how humans and bobcats interact. I called the Desert Museum for some information. The expert asked if I was feeding them or providing water. I told her that of course I knew better than to do that. She asked if we had a pool. When I replied yes, she told me that I was providing them water. She asked if we had a bird feeder. When I replied yes, she told me I was providing them with food. She assured me that hanging out with a big group of crazy 12 year olds was not a bobcat's idea of a good time. There were no problems at the party.

Since that day, we are always on the look out for bobcats and we have had many. We have had several mamas who have brought their kitties. I have watched for hours (and had the sore shoulder muscles from photographing them) as the babies learned to pounce and hunt. We had one show up just as we were about to sit down to Thanksgiving dinner. We have had a mating pair. We even replaced the old windows in our living room, not because we were inspired by more efficient windows (although we were) but because they were so old with hard water build up that it was difficult to shoot pictures of bobcats through them. We can go months and months without seeing one but this is the time of year that we get most hopeful, and start wishing. We often wonder if some that we see now are related to the ones we saw many years ago. As weather gets hotter and hotter and there are fewer and fewer places to find water, they will often show up for some shade and a drink.

I hope that this blog will have many posts about bobcats future but for now here are some shots of bobcats past.

These shots are of a mama and her 3 babies from last October. I am not sure how the babies got in but they had some trouble getting out.
Mama kept walking down the top of the wall, trying to encourage them up but they weren't able to do it.
She finally got to a place where we have an old wagon filled with small firewood for the firepit. They jumped on that and then jumped on the vine to get themselves over the wall. There was too much vegetation for me to get any shots of that but I sure did laugh watching them scramble.

So for now, we are wishing and hoping that soon we will have some bobcats that want to pay a visit. Do you see all three babies?

I'm linking to the fun at "Outdoor Wednesday".

Saturday, June 12, 2010

you never know what you will see in the early morning...


Can't sleep any more. Wearily make my way out to the family room, eyes barely open. Sit on the couch. Spot this light around the candlestick. There is no choice but to grab the camera and shoot. Light doesn't wait for one to wake up.






1/400, f/1.4, ISO2000, 50mm lens

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

a Memorial Day table...

WB is a carver. It is a magical process to me. No matter how often I watch him work, I never can see how he can take a piece of wood and turn it into a work of art. I am lucky to be the recipient of many of his treasures. Selfishly, I must admit, I can barely stand when someone else gets one.


Uncle Sam was the inspiration for another simple tablescape. When K was a little girl, she was fascinated by the process. Many times when it was time for bed, her dad would be carving. When she would wake in the morning, the project would be finished. WB would always tell her that he carved down to the the paint. It still makes me smile to think of it. Do you see the firecracker that Uncle Sam is holding?


This is such a simple setting. Red, white and blue with some stars seems to be all that is needed. When I went to layer some plates, I realized that my bright red plates are an entirely different color than my bright red tablecloth.







I love this mum with its fireworks-like flowers. The fork and spoon on top are waiting for a strawberry/blueberry shortcake dessert.



You can see another Uncle Sam at this angle.



I am late with this post because of computer problems but I hope everyone had a good Memorial Day!

Thank you to Susan for hosting Tablescape Thursday. It is always so much fun!

a moment of silence for my old computer...

It is gone but thanks to the very talented Brian, all is well. I haven't lost anything too very important. New monitor - oh my! I can't say this was a great time to have to buy a new computer but let me say one more time, new monitor - oh my! I am going to download two weeks of photos and hopefully things will be back to normal very soon.
P.S. This is not the very talented Brian.