Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Ikebana

When I was little I really HATED going to the dentist.

And I imagine they weren't too thrilled to see me either.

One time the dentist offered my Mom a pill (for me to take ahead of time in order to relax before I got a cavity filled).

Yowza. That seems a bit creepy, doesn't it?

Anyway, as an adult I enjoy the dentist office. Dr. Miyashiro is a total perfectionist. I know my smile and gums are in good hands.

Plus walking into her office in La Jolla is like visiting a spa. 

Because she practices the art of Ikebana:


The Japanese art of flower arrangement. It is more than simply putting flowers in a container. It is a disciplined art form in which the arrangement is a living thing where nature and humanity are brought together. It is steeped in the philosophy of developing a closeness with nature.

Ikebana is an art, in the same sense that painting and sculpture are arts. It has a recorded history; it is backed up by articulate theories; and it is concerned with creativity. In Japan, flower arrangements are used as decorations on a level with paintings and other art objects.




Her receptionist told me that Dr. M brings in new 'art' every week. 



The arrangements are breathtaking.





Much more relaxing than any pill.





Monday, 3 August 2015

Coloring Books for Grown Ups

Have you walked into a bookstore recently?

I was at the Barnes & Noble in Encinitas this weekend to grab a copy of Harper Lee's Go Set A Watchman and I was amazed at the number of coloring books on display.

Up front.

For adults.

Stacks of them.



I love to doodle and scribble. I find it relaxing.

There is something zen about being creative, but not really creative, because you are just filling in the lines/patterns.





A repetitive mindless motion that allows your thoughts to wander.

I am completely on board with this new trend.

Check out these links:

          Business Insider --- Adult Coloring Books are having a moment

          CNN --- Adult coloring books topping bestseller lists

          Washington Post --- The Strange Rise of children's books for adults decoded

          New Yorker --- Why adults are buying coloring books for themselves


As we stood in the checkout line, my husband glanced over at my selection and said, "I think we have some crayons at home."

No way.

I draw the line at crayons.

Colored pencils or fine tip markers for these lovely illustrations!





Saturday, 1 August 2015

We've Got Melons

During the Spring we designated a big square-ish area of our backyard to creating a melon patch.

This is our first attempt to grow watermelon and honeydew and by the looks of things…

          Long vines spreading in all directions
          Melons the size of baseballs
          Bright green healthy leaves

….we are off to a roaring start!




Apparently melons don't like to sit on the ground and get their bottoms wet so you are supposed to strap them up in a sling or place a board under them.



I hoisted them up onto empty plastic pots.



Here is one little trio balancing on their garden stage.


Entertaining the peppers and eggplants nearby:

                              Q: Why do watermelons have fancy weddings?
                              A: Because they cantaloupe. 



Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Energy in Palm Springs

There are constants in Palm Springs.

A statue of Sonny Bono, who was once mayor of the city. Date Shakes at Hadley Fruit Orchards. Palm Trees. Mid-Century Modern Architecture. Misters in outdoor restaurants to keep patrons cool.

And what appears to be a farm growing windmills as far as the eye can see.

Only they are really wind turbines and they produce enough electricity to power the city and beyond!







Monday, 27 July 2015

Charming Laguna Beach

There are many coastal towns in Southern California but Laguna Beach, regardless of the summer crowds and traffic, holds a special charm, even if you are not there for the annual Sawdust Festival or Pageant of the Masters.

But just want to swim in the ocean, lick coconut gelato, browse the shops and check out a bit of art!





















Monday, 20 July 2015

Collecting Rain Water



Due to drought conditions and constant reminders about the drought conditions and lots of water cooler talk about drought conditions, we all have water on the brain.

Not actual water on the brain as we are in drought conditions.

Everywhere we look or listen, there are postings, articles, news stories.

And the water department provides pop ups as well:



So when the thunder and lightning and deluge showed up this weekend, we thought:

COLLECT THE WATER, STORE THE WATER, DON'T WASTE ALL THAT WATER!!!!

Treating the rain as if gold was pouring from our darkened sky.

So that is what we did:










The rain kept coming so we moved from little containers to bigger buckets to wheelbarrow to recycling bin and then fashioned some tubing to direct the runoff from the gutters out toward what had been 'crunchy' grass the day before.

And today it is bright and sunny and we are feeling very water-wise!




Saturday, 4 July 2015

Fourth of July Parade

At 9 am, Uncle Sam and his entourage made their way from the Del Mar Powerhouse down Coast Boulevard.

There were many many many more people in the parade than watching the parade!