Month: July 2012

Back at the condo…

Back at the condo getting ready for the big fireworks extravaganza. The arrow points to Gas Works Park where at 2:30 people have already cornered their spot on the grassy hill waiting for the show that will start after 10pm.

Lake Union is filling up with boats too.

At the Mammoth Hot…

At the Mammoth Hot Springs Visitors Center.

The Visitors Center at National Parks are a must first stop which we did as one must, to get maps and plan the day and then we came again in the late afternoon to tour the displays.

Fireworks As Seen From…

Fireworks As Seen From the Jewel Box in the Sky.

I hauled my tripod in my carryon bag all the way up from LA. I’m hoping it was the crazy wind on our 27th floor balcony that made those lights that should have been still look otherwise and not that I didn’t do the whole mirror up/cable release thing because then it would be my fault and we don’t want that.

And in last night’s test, when it wasn’t so windy, this didn’t happen. But maybe it was the amount of telephoto, or the other things, or something else. Next year if the universe is kind I’ll have a new camera and have to figure it out all over again.

It was perfectly great fun with displays popping up everywhere we looked around the city, across the bay, up the ridge lines – it was totally cool.

Lucas, Betsy, Xander, and…

July 5

Lucas, Betsy, Xander, and Anya came over from Edmunds for a visit. Yay!

Here’s Anya in front of the welcoming mural at the Seattle Art Museum’s Sculpture Garden. And here she is Anya in 2008 in Barcelona. Good job Anya.

We left Salt Lake…

July 14

We left Salt Lake City early so we’d have time to see the Dinosaur National Monument today and spend the night in Vernal, Utah.

On the way we wanted to enjoy a bit of Park City, home of the Sundance Film Festival and site of the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Before leaving Mammoth Hot…

July 8

Before leaving Mammoth Hot Springs we decided to make another pass by the terraces (created by “a series of colorful springs in various stages of accretion or decay”).

This is a You Are Here map along the way. The NPS does a great job with the boardwalks, the signage…

Coming out of Park…

Coming out of Park City we traveled through some of the most splendid landscape. It was particularly wonderful because of the variety of trees that made up the forests. I thought I could get a google-maps shot that would tell the tale but no luck – they’re all in winter.

The scenery was gorgeous even after leaving the forests.

Xander is parkour-boy these…

Xander is parkour-boy these days and he was able to exhibit many of his skills around the park including pulling himself onto the top of an 7 foot wall in one smooth move. Here we see him using his father as an obstacle to be overcome.

Anya is doing a drama program for the summer and they will put on a play at the end of August. She has a big part and many lines to learn, and songs to sing. We got to hear a little preview and it’s going to be great!

And the wildflowers were…

And the wildflowers were heavenly, all sorts of bright colors in beautiful patterns dotting the meadows and the roadside vegetation.

Unfortunately I couldn’t get a picture to look heavenly but I did torture Sharon with Oh Looks! ooows and aaahs.

The ground is just…

The ground is just pebbles colored by the reflections of the surrounding metal-work. Usually you can’t see any color on the ground because it’s cloudy and you need sun for the reflections.

The work is (cleverly) called Seattle Cloud Cover, by Teresita Fernandez.

The highlight of the…

The highlight of the park offerings is the Quarry Exhibit Hall just recently reopened after being under refurbishment for six years.

This is an enclosed space surrounding one of the many fossil sites in the area. From the park’s website: “Here, you can gaze upon the remains of numerous different species of dinosaurs including Allosaurus, Apatosaurus, Camarasaurus, Diplodicus, and Stegosaurus along with several others.

“Exhibits, including an 80-foot long mural reveal the story of these animals and many others that lived in the Morrison environment during the late Jurassic. There are even several places where you can touch real 149 million year old dinosaur fossils!”

We enjoyed an easy…

We enjoyed an easy lunch with the kids at the Bang Bang Café and then another tasty and fun Happy Hour dinner this time at the Umi Sake House.

(internet pix)

It was time to…

It was time to eat, Sharon was driving, I was calling out the names of all the places to eat as we passed by. ‘Burger King’ ‘Taco Bell’ ‘Village Inn’.

‘Ahh, Village Inn’ Sharon noted. ‘We always ate at Village Inn when I was growing up.’ Since I had never known a Village Inn we of course had to stop here. It’s a Denny’s-Copper Penny-Norms kind of place so similar to the places where we always ate when I was growing up, and it was still fun.

Usually I go for…

July 9

Usually I go for 10 pictures a day – enough to tell a story and not so many as to weaken the resolve of my family and friends to follow along. But these last few days it’s been toooo many. Sigh.

Making the southern loop from Old Faithful we stopped first at West Thumb and the West Thumb Geyser Basin that borders Yellowstone Lake.

Remember the tatami room…

Remember the tatami room in the Kauai house that I always so delight in turning into an office? This house has one too and omg check out this view onto the back landscaped garden, Jacuzzi pond, and Tea House.

I’ll make pictures of the Tea House tomorrow. Everyone who knows me will say ‘oh Penny, that place is so YOU’.

Sharon’s daughter and son-in-law…

Sharon’s daughter and son-in-law came in last night too and brought their .. not kidding .. seven dogs.

They are working on putting together a no-kill animal shelter in the Denver area and although the shelter isn’t ready yet they couldn’t turn away any of these special-needs dogs that came their way. But this is it, no more until their project has opened Phase One.

I spent a while trying to make portraits of them all. These Sharon considers her Grand Dogs because they have been around the longest: Roland, Bela, Paco.

Date night for d&a…

July 29

Date night for d&a and Play Time for me and the kids. Here we are at the park right around the corner from their house…

Yampa River Botanic Park,…

July 17

Yampa River Botanic Park, a lovely place right in town.

From Ms Wiki: “The park is situated in a valley beside the Yampa River at an altitude of 6,800 feet, with a frost-free growing season of approximately 60 days ((the italics are mine)). Summers are dry and intensely sunny; winters are cold with heavy snow.”

On a bluffs walk…

July 28

On a bluffs walk in the Palisades, they had recently done an abatement project so the aroma from the just cut anise plants was gorgeous.

I was actually expecting…

I was actually expecting to find ourselves in a traffic jam surrounded by bison but that didn’t happen.

BTW, we don’t have buffalo here, we have only bison. Ask Ms Wiki for details. We do have a town called Buffalo WY (not to mention Buffalo NY) which doesn’t make naming conventions any more clear.

…and from their brochure:…

…and from their brochure: “In fifteen years the Yampa River Botanic Park sprang from a flat horse pasture to a six acre gem of ponds, berms, and over 40 gardens. It is one of the jewels of Northwest Colorado and one of the few botanic parks in the state.”

I guess it’s one of the few botanic parks since, if Steamboat Springs is any indication, they have a growing season of sixty days.

Nancy showing us her…

July 27

Nancy showing us her garden! At Park La Brea any tenant, for six bucks a month and a two year wait, can get a patch of their own.

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