Friday, April 24, 2015

More Surprises on our Big Bend Road Trip

                                                                     
The scenery is mostly flat after leaving Big Bend Natl Park and we almost missed the sign and entrance to Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center and Botanical Gardens located in the Fort Davis area. http://www.cdri.org/  






There were paths to explore and we chose the one to the cactus greenhouse where almost everything was in bloom.  I could have stayed a day just looking and examining those varied blossoms.  I love cacti and am always astounded at the beauty of the flowers. 











Outside the headquarters rocks were grouped illustrating the ages of the earth.  The exhibit wrapped around the building and was one of the most interesting exhibits of its kind I've seen.




On the way home we stopped at the Chiricahua National Monument in Arizona and camped by a stream in a campground.  There has been lots of  water damage along the river and two campgrounds were closed.  Trees were uprouted and roads undercut.  Lots of work to be done there.

Chiricahua Mountains
There were many hummingbirds at the Research Center's bird feeding area as well as Scott's Orioles and Say's Phoebes.  


We drove by the Roosevelt Lake and saw the sign for the Tonto National Monument.  Neither of us had been there to see the cliff dwellings.  Time to stop and explore!  

 

The switch back walk to the cliff dwellings
850 years ago, the Salado (Pueblo Indians) lived here

 By the time we arrived home, I had 845 pictures on my camera.  I think I’m down to 451 at the moment and will continue deleting carefully. 

Things to remember for the next road trip:
  • .Stop often - Get out of the car and walk paying attention to the small things.
  • .Leave time to explore and find the surprises along the way
  • .Enjoy the sunrise and the sunset
  • .Take lots of snacks and water
  • .Take lots of pictures – be sure the camera exposure is correct!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Leaving Time for Surprises


We just returned from an 8 day road trip to Big Bend Texas where we saw spectacular country and the best wildflower show in 30 years.  One could almost OD on nature’s beauty…  The Texas Bluebonnets were 3 ft deep each side of the road and went on for miles.  The sides of the mountains and hills were blue and yellow with white dotted here and there.  I wanted to stop (which we did often) and just sit in the middle of the blue. 


We planned the trip with time to stop every so often as I needed to walk and keep my new knee limber.  That let us explore along the way stopping for short walks, looking at birds and flowers, discovering rocks and finding places we might like to visit again. 

Golden -breasted Woodpecker





Texas Bluebonnet
It took 2 ½ days to get to our destination and 2 ½ days to get home.  That left 3 days to explore Big Bend and 4 days to decide where to car camp while traveling.  We were able to find secluded campsites as well as a campsite in a Texas State Park (they had a shower!).




Vermillion Flycatcher

 
Greater Earless Lizard

Prickly Poppies
Big Bend National Park is named for the big bend in the Rio Grande River and encompasses 800,000 acres.  It is said that Pecos Bill lassoed a wild tornado and carved a series of amazing river canyons.  It is home to over 450 year round and migratory bird species and the elevation changes from 1800 ft. along the Rio Grande to 8000 ft in the Chisos Mountains.  There are deserts, canyons, pine forests and so many wildflowers to be seen!


Rio Grande


We signed up for distributed camping where we were assigned a primitive campsite on a long dirt/rock road in the Pine Canyon area.  We found it in the dark as we drove slowly trying to get the Jack rabbits out of the road.  I finally had to get out with the flashlight and walk in front of the truck shooing the critters into the brush as I laughed.  They were confused by the headlights.   

The stars were brilliant in those dark skies as we looked for the various constellations.   By day we explored by truck and on foot and we marveled at the variety of adventures to be had in this park.
 


     Next week I’ll finish the trip home and show more surprises we found.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Cinco de Mayo Necklace




 In my last post, I shared my adventure of making a complex polymer cane using fabric as an inspiration and the design in the fabric was inspired from Mexican tile.  I decided to make a necklace to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, (May 5) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinco_de_Mayo and use some of the canes as beads.


It was fun to give the beads dimension by curing 2 halves, assembling the halves into a whole bead and creating a way to hang them. 


.

Focal Bead
Front of Focul Bead
The focal bead looks like a pillow with the two convex squares over the four sides of skinny ovals
The mobius bead above the focal pillow bead is attached to the necklace with a lobster claw.

Each large bead is decorated front and back to give a finished interesting look to the necklace.  Polymer beads are lightweight and durable. 

The back of the beads shown in the first photo above.

Margaritas, mariachis, chips and salsa and a colorful one of a kind necklace should make May 5 pretty special! 

From Cooks.com!

SUPER MARGARITA

4 oz. Cointreau
4 oz. Tequila
4 oz. freshly squeezed key lime juice
ice, as desired.
Combine ingredients and shake with ice or pour over ice, or pulse in blender.
Dip serving glass in water then dip edge of glass in salt.
Makes 4 servings or serves one, four times.

Friday, April 24, 2015

More Surprises on our Big Bend Road Trip

                                                                     
The scenery is mostly flat after leaving Big Bend Natl Park and we almost missed the sign and entrance to Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center and Botanical Gardens located in the Fort Davis area. http://www.cdri.org/  






There were paths to explore and we chose the one to the cactus greenhouse where almost everything was in bloom.  I could have stayed a day just looking and examining those varied blossoms.  I love cacti and am always astounded at the beauty of the flowers. 











Outside the headquarters rocks were grouped illustrating the ages of the earth.  The exhibit wrapped around the building and was one of the most interesting exhibits of its kind I've seen.




On the way home we stopped at the Chiricahua National Monument in Arizona and camped by a stream in a campground.  There has been lots of  water damage along the river and two campgrounds were closed.  Trees were uprouted and roads undercut.  Lots of work to be done there.

Chiricahua Mountains
There were many hummingbirds at the Research Center's bird feeding area as well as Scott's Orioles and Say's Phoebes.  


We drove by the Roosevelt Lake and saw the sign for the Tonto National Monument.  Neither of us had been there to see the cliff dwellings.  Time to stop and explore!  

 

The switch back walk to the cliff dwellings
850 years ago, the Salado (Pueblo Indians) lived here

 By the time we arrived home, I had 845 pictures on my camera.  I think I’m down to 451 at the moment and will continue deleting carefully. 

Things to remember for the next road trip:
  • .Stop often - Get out of the car and walk paying attention to the small things.
  • .Leave time to explore and find the surprises along the way
  • .Enjoy the sunrise and the sunset
  • .Take lots of snacks and water
  • .Take lots of pictures – be sure the camera exposure is correct!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Leaving Time for Surprises


We just returned from an 8 day road trip to Big Bend Texas where we saw spectacular country and the best wildflower show in 30 years.  One could almost OD on nature’s beauty…  The Texas Bluebonnets were 3 ft deep each side of the road and went on for miles.  The sides of the mountains and hills were blue and yellow with white dotted here and there.  I wanted to stop (which we did often) and just sit in the middle of the blue. 


We planned the trip with time to stop every so often as I needed to walk and keep my new knee limber.  That let us explore along the way stopping for short walks, looking at birds and flowers, discovering rocks and finding places we might like to visit again. 

Golden -breasted Woodpecker





Texas Bluebonnet
It took 2 ½ days to get to our destination and 2 ½ days to get home.  That left 3 days to explore Big Bend and 4 days to decide where to car camp while traveling.  We were able to find secluded campsites as well as a campsite in a Texas State Park (they had a shower!).




Vermillion Flycatcher

 
Greater Earless Lizard

Prickly Poppies
Big Bend National Park is named for the big bend in the Rio Grande River and encompasses 800,000 acres.  It is said that Pecos Bill lassoed a wild tornado and carved a series of amazing river canyons.  It is home to over 450 year round and migratory bird species and the elevation changes from 1800 ft. along the Rio Grande to 8000 ft in the Chisos Mountains.  There are deserts, canyons, pine forests and so many wildflowers to be seen!


Rio Grande


We signed up for distributed camping where we were assigned a primitive campsite on a long dirt/rock road in the Pine Canyon area.  We found it in the dark as we drove slowly trying to get the Jack rabbits out of the road.  I finally had to get out with the flashlight and walk in front of the truck shooing the critters into the brush as I laughed.  They were confused by the headlights.   

The stars were brilliant in those dark skies as we looked for the various constellations.   By day we explored by truck and on foot and we marveled at the variety of adventures to be had in this park.
 


     Next week I’ll finish the trip home and show more surprises we found.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Cinco de Mayo Necklace




 In my last post, I shared my adventure of making a complex polymer cane using fabric as an inspiration and the design in the fabric was inspired from Mexican tile.  I decided to make a necklace to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, (May 5) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinco_de_Mayo and use some of the canes as beads.


It was fun to give the beads dimension by curing 2 halves, assembling the halves into a whole bead and creating a way to hang them. 


.

Focal Bead
Front of Focul Bead
The focal bead looks like a pillow with the two convex squares over the four sides of skinny ovals
The mobius bead above the focal pillow bead is attached to the necklace with a lobster claw.

Each large bead is decorated front and back to give a finished interesting look to the necklace.  Polymer beads are lightweight and durable. 

The back of the beads shown in the first photo above.

Margaritas, mariachis, chips and salsa and a colorful one of a kind necklace should make May 5 pretty special! 

From Cooks.com!

SUPER MARGARITA

4 oz. Cointreau
4 oz. Tequila
4 oz. freshly squeezed key lime juice
ice, as desired.
Combine ingredients and shake with ice or pour over ice, or pulse in blender.
Dip serving glass in water then dip edge of glass in salt.
Makes 4 servings or serves one, four times.