30 April 2010

Tucson sun & moon ~ early morning

Here is a cool duo for you to enjoy! On my morning walk I saw the full moon to the west and the sunrise to the east.

29 April 2010

The center of Tucson ~ green & leafy

Here is the lovely, welcoming entrance to Tucson's Botanical Gardens. It's a beautiful spot at any time of year but is particularly nice right now before we start getting our hardcore hot weather. Come in, stroll around, refresh yourself!

28 April 2010

The 1st of a new series... Hoof & Roof

As I was driving on Oracle Road I spotted this life-size elk on top of - what else? - the Tucson Elks Club Lodge. It got me to thinking about how many other animals there are around town that maintain a rooftop lookout. All suggestions are appreciated. My list so far includes the cow at OK Corral Restaurant, the horse at OK Feed, and Fred the Bison at Copper Country Antiques. What others am I missing?

27 April 2010

Tucson's Ghost Ranch to rise again ~

The old gateway into Tucson that was used by all of the vacationing motorists was called "Miracle Mile." Many motor court style motels lined this route and one of the most famous was the circa-1940's Ghost Ranch Lodge with its distinctive sign (reputedly designed by Georgia O'Keefe).

The lodge has been closed for years but will get a second life as a senior living home due to open in August, 2010. Here's more of the story:

26 April 2010

An ornamental beauty ~ bottle brush tree

In full flower right now are Tucson's bottle brush trees. The fiery red blossoms are beautiful and attract bees and hummingbirds. For a good closeup of the flower and more info, click here: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/bottle-brush-tree.html

25 April 2010

Invisible Lizard ~

I spotted this desert lizard next to my driveway and it stayed totally still as I took a few photos. Can anyone identify this one? I went to the awesome online photo library of the AZ Sonora Desert Museum but couldn't find an exact match.

24 April 2010

Making progress ~

Our office construction/renovation continues. The main office space is now cleared and ready for the installation of a new wall configuration. It's amazing how big the space is without walls - like a dance studio!

23 April 2010

Gardening can pose some RATTLING challenges ~

Photos courtesy of Susanne Kaplan.
This fearless photographer has shared her utterly amazing photos! As she told the tale it seems she had been re-potting plants and cleaning out old pots for probably an hour before she realized what was lurking in the blue pot. She said it gave her "a bit of a chill." I bet it did!!

And I am further amazed that she calmly photographed what she called "the little cutie." It disappeared after about an hour and it hasn't returned.

22 April 2010

Sam Hughes ~ a Tucson hero

Sam Hughes arrived in Tucson suffering from tuberculosis when he was 29 years old. He quickly recovered, married, and raised a large family. Arizona was still a Territory when he helped the governor to establish public education. After his death he was honored with a school named after him and now the residential area surounding that site is known as the Sam Hughes neighborhood. His grave (in Evergreen Cemetery) features a very modest headstone.

21 April 2010

The Avett Brothers ride into Tucson ~

Another Tucson gem - the Rialto Theatre - is using its own exterior walls for advertising. They have engaged the talents of Tucson artist, Joe Pagac, to advertise an upcoming concert in lifesize style! Can't you hear those hooves pounding??
http://www.rialtotheatre.com/ and http://www.joepagac.com/

20 April 2010

Spooky office!

Our offices are being renovated and the main space is draped with plastic sheeting to keep down the dust and mess. I loved the billowing wall and the way the light reflects through it.

19 April 2010

A Mighty Mouse Limo (and mousetrap!) ~

I still haven't been able to catch the regular mouse cars as they drive around Tucson but I've captured the mouse LIMO for you. It's parked in front of the Truly Nolen headquarters on Speedway. And do check out that mighty mousetrap! Fun!

18 April 2010

Follow the Yellow Petal Road ~

With the beautiful Rincon Mountains in the distance, here is a stretch of the walking/biking path off of Houghton Road & Old Spanish Trail. The yellow blooms literally spill onto the path ~ gorgeous walking!

17 April 2010

Arizona to Alaska - Caffeine a must!

My friends Carole and Earl are on their way right now from Tucson to Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska where they will be starting a new posting. This photo is to wish them safe driving on their long trip. Although spring is in full bloom here, it is still snowing in Alaska. Keep those gloves & earmuffs handy, my friends!

16 April 2010

Wildflower fever hits Tucson ~

Absolutely everywhere you turn the desert is on display with gorgeous, vibrant color! This lovely patch of cactus flowers is just off the Old Spanish Trail walking path. The amazing magenta flowers are the hedgehog cactus in bloom. So pretty! Look closely and you'll also see a bit of saguaro spine... it looks like driftwood.

15 April 2010

Saluting the sky - the magnificent Century Plant

Another icon of the spring desert landscape - the Century Plant (also known as an agave) - is definitely showing off right now. This one's central stalk was covered entirely with yellow flowers a day or two before I took this photo. Bees and birds denuded it in short order. For more information on this heroic plant, click on WiseGeek:

14 April 2010

The desert is in full spring bloom!

You don't have to be on an official nature hike to enjoy Tucson's spring flowers right now. Here is a photo of the blooming beauty on Harrison Road just north of 22nd Street. Also notice the nice tile work on the wall - part of Councilwoman Shirley Scott's constant efforts to beautify Ward 4.

13 April 2010

Chickens Redux ~ cluck on!

Photos courtesy of Chance Agrella.

And now... even more chickens! I knew that my friend, Chance, is raising chickens in his backyard and I finally wore him down to take some photos of his girls. The top photo is Daisy who is kind of glowering into the camera from her perch in a milkcrate. Chance says this is where she likes to roost. The bottom photo is Buffy with her fetching little tuft comb scratching in front of their coop. Note the stylish red door!

12 April 2010

The noble Chicken is Rhode Island's State Bird!

Yep, remember that you read it here first. The Rhode Island Red chicken is Rhode Island's State Bird! These gentle and reliable cluckers lay brown eggs. To accompany yesterday's lush garden photos, here are some photos from the Community Food Bank's chicken coop.

At the top is a Rhode Island red & another chicken (not sure what breed it is). In the bottom photo note the chicken on the left. To cool off she clawed out a hollow in the straw and fluffed dust on her feathers. When she saw my camera I really think she was ready to say, "WHAT?"

This fun video is only about a minute long... check it out!

11 April 2010

And how does YOUR garden grow?

Ah... I only wish I could claim this lush garden as my own! This is the wonderful Community Food Bank's Demonstration & Market Garden in bloom. If you want to learn how you can make YOUR garden grow like this one, they have lots classes ~ how to start a compost, how to make a solar oven, and many others. Here's the link to check it out: http://communityfoodbank.com/2010/01/15/gardening-workshops/

10 April 2010

Blue sky, blue moon, blue pots ~

Are you looking at your yard & garden and wondering how to perk it up this spring? How about adding some gorgeous new pots? You know your plants would look fabulous in cobalt blue...

09 April 2010

Take a stroll back in time ~

A beautiful area for a walking tour is Tucson's barrio district (also called Barrio Historico or Barrio Libre). This house is on Convent Avenue ~ a street that is lined with many charming adobe homes dating from the 1800's. Adjacent to Tucson's downtown, this small area is now a mix of private residences and offices for lawyers & other professionals.

08 April 2010

Tucson's parking lot art ~

I have posted other images from the Midway Business Park (Speedway near Swan) and here is one more remarkable piece of sculpture that would be easy to miss as you drive by. This Native American astride a horse is the centerpiece of the parking lot. I walked around but didn't see any information on the name of the artist or the title of the piece. If you know more, let me know! The other equine sculpture (I posted one in March) are easier to spot as they are close to the street. Those horses are very modern in style - quite a mix of art at this business location!

07 April 2010

Tucson is a birder haven ~

This is better than a bumper sticker - it's a whole theme! This driver has a custom license plate and decals, too. The one with the hummingbird says, "So many birds, so little time." The decal on the window says, "Bird Watcher. Prone to Sudden Stops." Fun!

06 April 2010

Tucson's adorable "Reds" ~ baby javelina!!

Photos courtesy of Linda Wallace-Gray.

Oh boy! Baby javelina! These little cuties were born just a few days ago (see the cord still attached to one). The babies are called "reds." The javelina (pecari tajacu) enjoy dining on prickly pear cactus - spines and all. Isn't spring in the desert great?

This month the Desert Museum's member newsletter is all about javelina (and what a great cover photo!). Click on www.desertmuseum.org to learn more about these interesting vegetarians.

05 April 2010

Tucson's bright spring colors ~

We are so lucky to have the sunny weather that we do in Tucson. And here is a great example of a homeowner with a perpetually sunny attitude ~ wow, an orange porch! Is that welcome and cheery or what?? This home is in the Armory Park area, a mix of historic and new homes in downtown Tucson.

04 April 2010

A perfect Easter Sunday ~

I can think of few public places as spiritual and uplifting as Tucson's Botanical Gardens. I'm hoping that you have a lovely Easter filled with friends, family, and lots of chocolate. (:

03 April 2010

Tucson is dog friendly!

Here is a peek at the back of Maynard's, the restaurant and market housed in Tucson's historic train depot. The patio area is beside the rail line so you can enjoy the trains thundering by as you drink & dine.

02 April 2010

Tucson's Historic Train Depot on Toole ~

The historic train depot is a key piece of the revitalization of downtown Tucson. The restoration of the depot and its surrounding buildings has created a gathering place ~ Amtrak passengers coming and going, museum visitors touring the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum, and diners and shoppers at Maynard's & Maynard's Market.

01 April 2010

Colonel Epes Randolph ~ builder, leader, visionary

Colonel Epes Randolph dramatically shaped Tucson and, in fact, the entire Southwest. He was the president of the Southern Pacific Railroad and was a descendent of Pocahontas! This bust is on Randolph Way, just south of Broadway near Reid Park.