Rain, Rain & Even More Rain

It just couldn’t get any wetter around here.  But who lives in the desert and doesn’t do the happy dance when it rains?  We knew this storm was coming in from the west and we’re all grateful, but the funny thing is that Tucsonans don’t really know how to drive in the rain.

I went to the dentist this morning and some guy was tail-gating me.  It was on a busy road with two lanes going each way.  Do you think he could have moved over?  No … and I was actually going a little over the speed limit.  Then there’s the drivers who like to spray oncoming cars by speeding it up through the road puddles.  Hmmm . . . maybe they didn’t get enough attention as kids???

It’s OK, southern Arizona likes the whole puddle phenomenon …

Red Dirt & Rain Water




Wow! This has been quite a year for interesting combinations of numbers.  I woke up like any other morning today but as the day progressed I had a few extra opportunities to feel gratitude.  A phone call, an email, an encounter at the store with a woman that was very uplifting.  She explained to me how grateful she is to be living here … right here; right now. It was rather amazing because I’ve talked to her before but today it was different. (She’s a clerk at the supermarket where I shop most often).  It was like we connected at a deeper level today.  Not just the superficial “hello, how are you?”  I left feeling lighter and more involved with life.

I have the feeling we’re all going to be experiencing more and more of this feeling of unity as time goes on and we get more into 2012.  Are you open to more giving, receiving and forgiving?

If Today Was a Flower, It Would be Roses

Off to the dentist tomorrow … ugh! Namaste.


He Gets It!

In my humble opinion, this man is the only GOP nominee candidate that actually “gets it.”  And he has gotten it for 30 years.  Everything he has said has happened in some form. Watch this video first  and then watch the one below it.  They are both real eye-openers!

This next one is a real eye-opener about what’s really true about our debts:


If Dr. Seuss Met Eckhart Tolle

My gratitude goes to Chris Cade, who sent me this today.  I don’t have much to say about it except that each day I learn something new about myself and the rest of us … we are all one but we seem to act otherwise.  I read Dr. Seuss to my kids many years ago and to my grandkids as well.  This is the grown-up version:

Life could be so good if we could all tame our egos. Namaste!

How to Take Your Photos from Snapshot to Art

Anyone can take a photo, but only those who truly invest themselves in the shot will produce pictures that wow everyone. With a bit of practice and the right information, you can finally take the kinds of photos that get noticed.

1. Move in tight, and allow your subject to fill the majority of the frame. I learned a long time ago (by trial and error) that good photos don’t usually include my subject’s feet. If you’re taking a group photo, get in close enough to see faces, heads and shoulders. With today’s digital SLR cameras, point and shoot cameras and camera phones, you can afford to take lots of shots to practice this technique.

2. Carefully compose the photo, and pay close attention to the background and distractions that can ruin the perfect shot. Sometimes you want to take a photo of someone or something that’s in front of a busy background. If you can’t move your subject, you’ll just have to make the best of it. If you have a setting on your camera that blurs out the background, you should use that. (See your camera’s instruction manual to get more information on that or look it up online. It’s called Bokeh, meaning shallow focus).

3. Make sure you are focused on your subject.

Tight Focus/Blurred Background

That means that when you look through your viewfinder or at your LCD display, your subject should look very clear; no blur.  If you do see a blur, try changing your camera’s settings. A landscape photo will have a different setting than a close-up  of a person or a flower.

4. Pay close attention to lighting to ensure that shadows and highlights are falling properly on your subject. This can take some practice, especially if you’re used to taking snapshots. Moving your photography to the next level will require learning how light affects your photos. A good rule of thumb about natural, outdoor light is to take photos during the golden hours … the hours around sunrise and sunset. Around sunrise your photos will have more blue light and around sunset the light will be more red. Pictures taken at high noon tend to look flat and/or create unwanted shadows on faces.

5. Experiment, and think outside the box. We all would love to find that perfect shot; the one that wows everyone who sees it. To get it, you will need to practice, practice, practice. Why not? If you don’t like what you see, you can always delete it.

The perfect shot requires a bit of thought. Take the time to properly set up your photo, and you will have a better chance of capturing that image that you see in your mind’s eye.

Keeping Up with the Joneses’

It used to be that the Christmas season would peek it’s head around the corner of Halloween, (yes, Halloween) and my husband, affectionately known as Father Christmas, would be digging around in the attic and garage for … wait for it … yep! the Christmas decorations.  He was the target of much criticism by most of the husbands in our neighborhood. You know, those guys who hate to pull out all of those extension cords, timers, and a bazillion strings of outside lights to try and live up to Chevy Chaise in Christmas Vacation.

Well, if the truth be known, my husband for several years gave Clark Griswold a run for his money. We even had to borrow electricity from our neighbor one year. We laughed because where else can you get a sunburn while putting up Christmas lights than in sunny southern Arizona?

Since then, we have limited our use of electrical and physical energy and resorted to just some of our all-time favorite decorations.  It used to be that we were the house on the left; now it’s more like the house on the right . . .

I don’t know who shot this picture, but I thought it was pretty funny. Actually, I’m very grateful that he’s not climbing around up on the roof anymore.

Cold Comes to Tucson

Here’s the weather forecast for Tucson and surrounding areas … we think this is cold!!!! OK, I know, for some of my readers, this is NOT cold. Call me a wimp … go ahead; it’s OK with me.
This weather does give me a chance to wear those nice warm sweaters, really pretty scarves and my favorite red gloves.  My dogs like running when it’s colder, too. I can see the smiles on their faces.
I’m happy!  I hope it’s nice and cold for Christmas this year. One year (the first year we were here) we put candles in the window and they melted down the wall.  Woops!   BTW, sorry to all the snowbirds who come here for the winter expecting sunny and 70’s.  This is only temporary.  Y’all can play golf again later next week. In the meantime, buy some firewood and warm your toes next to a fire.
Cold mornings and afternoons here to stay
The dip in the jet stream over the western US will not budge until Thursday-Friday of next week. That means we will be cold through Wednesday. AM freezes and frosts are likely through Wed. Protect plants! Showery weather with the outside chance for snow/rain mix in Tucson will continue through Monday AM. Chanukah: 17. Christmas: 22. – Chuck
Oro Valley, Arizona, United States
Today’s Forecast: Friday, 2 Dec 2011


Sky Conditions: Light Rain
Sunrise: 7:08 AM Sunset: 5:18 PM
Wind: E (89°) @ 8Mph
Precipitation Probability: 60%

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Light Rain
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3 Dec 2011

AM Clouds/PM Sun

AM Clouds/PM Sun


4 Dec 2011

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy


5 Dec 2011




6 Dec 2011

AM Clouds/PM Sun

AM Clouds/PM Sun


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