Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Today's excitement?  Giant hail.

giant hail

For approximately 1 minute this afternoon, as the thunderstorm was boiling over the hillside, we had a downpour of giant hail.

I've never seen hail this big.  It was awesome.  Of course, being the smart people that we are, Emma and I were out running around the yard looking at the hailstones.

giant hail

Let me tell you, it hurts to get clunked on the head with a 2-inch ball of ice falling out of the sky!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

I really am trying to organize my pretty pictures into a coherent post or two, but I keep getting sidetracked by other cool things to post about.  To wit:

western screech owl juveniles

I've been hearing this really, really soft bird sound at night recently.  One of those almost-not-heard-at-all sounds that teases me just as I'm falling asleep.  It sounded like a screech owl, but honestly I was so sleepy all three times I heard it, that I wasn't sure I wasn't dreaming.

This afternoon Emma was out playing in the neighborhood, and came running inside to get me in a great froth of excitement.  She hauled me out to look at the trees on the next block down, because she had seen BABY OWLS!

These are juvenile western screech owls, and they are still half-and-half baby down and adult feathers.  So the mystery of the night dream sounds is solved, and my sleepy mind identified them correctly.

How cool is that??!

Monday, July 09, 2012

How is it that I've lived in this corner of the world for almost six years, and have not until this last month fully appreciated the intoxicating perfume that is a ponderosa pine forest in mid-summer?

ponderosa pine forest

It's like a drug that I can't get enough of.  Emma and I go out geocaching and I feel like my lungs aren't big enough- I breathe in that scent until I'm lightheaded and giddy and convinced that the world has a purpose and I have a place in it.

breathtaking view

I guess I've just never noticed before, as impossible as that seems, beyond "oh, pine tree smell"...  Granted, last summer was a miserable blur of Shaun leaving me, and the summer before was a miserable blur of anemia.  I wanted to curl up in a ball and shut out the world, and hiking through the forest was absolute last on my list of things I wanted to do.

hiking girl

Now, though- now I drink in the waves of ponderosa and sagebrush scents that billow down from the hillsides in warm golden resinous clouds.  Even in town, it washes over me.  I can't turn on the air conditioner, because that shuts out the living air.  The forest exhales and I come alive.

There is really nothing like it.


(The first two pictures are from a geocaching adventure in the Wallowa Whitman National Forest, 8 miles northwest of my house; the second two are from Catherine Creek State Park, 20 miles southeast, measured as the raven flies.)

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Before I get to the adventure pictures, I have to post some glamor shots.  Last night, Emma and I had a hairdresser moment.

She's been talking for a while about cutting her hair, and last night she decided that she was ready.  Actually, she was ready last week, but I made her wait a few days to make sure she was ready.

(Actually, I made her wait because I wasn't ready.  I finally just cut it, because I was never going to be ready.)


She loves it, and I must admit that it's easier to manage.  She. Has. So. Much. Hair.  She can actually brush it by herself, now.

haircut 2

I miss the waterfall of golden silk, though.

Friday, July 06, 2012

Ahhhh!  I've been without a computer for two weeks!  I don't think I've been computer-less since... I don't even know when.
  • no email (except by stealth at work), 
  • no Googling interesting things,
  • no downloading geocaches to my GPS,
  • no Pinterest,
  • no spelling/math practice websites for Emma,
  • no downloading pictures from my camera,
  • no Ravelry,
  • no blog-reading,
  • no bank-account-checking to make sure everything's hunky-dory,
  • no changing around the music on my iPod,
  • no Google Earth browsing,
  • no designing weaving drafts,

It's appalling how dependent on my computer I am.

The good news is that the computer wasn't dead.  The fan stopped working because it had cat hair in it {blush}.  The computer gurus opened up the back, took out the fan, removed enough fur to make a small kitten, and put it back together.  Voila- my computer works again!  The only part that ticks me off is that they had the computer in their shop for TWO WEEKS while they looked for a supplier that had a replacement fan in stock, without even opening it up to see if it actually needed to be replaced.

Anyway, I have oodles of pictures to download and go through, then I'll have more geocaching adventures to show!