Sunday, May 30, 2010

a busy month

Ah, a 3-day weekend.  It's been a busy few weeks... lots of training and working and training some more.

Someday soon I'll post about the cycling part of my workout... how dramatically it's changed since my hubby surprised me with a new road bike. 
- Speaking of the hubby, I now have a new cycling partner, since my old bike went to him.  Pretty cool.

Today, we spent the day hanging out on the deck, walking the dogs in the park, and cooking up picnic foods.  Smoked BBQ Pork anyone?!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

12-of-12: May 2010

Well this is just great...
it's a work day and it's raining (again!).
Will I ever get a really nice day for my 12-of-12 this year?!?
You wouldn't think so.
Next month the 12th falls on a Saturday and I'm running in my first 5K - the Susan G. Komen Race for  Cure - so it's gotta be a good day.  Right???

Either way, thanks as always, to Chad Darnell - creator of the 12-of-12 - who had the brilliant idea to have folks from around the world post 12 shots of their day on the 12th day of each of the 12 months.  Visit his site to see more 12-of-12ers... and post your own!

And on with the show...

7am
The kids had the chance to do exactly what I wanted to do... they stayed in bed and slept late.  Notice there is no longer any space on the bed for humans and all the pillows are occupied.

On my way into work, I stopped at the bike shop to check on the status of my bike.  It's getting a tune up in preparation for the triathlon... a little less than 8 weeks to go.
As I was walking back to my car, I heard a what sounded like a ton of rushing water behind the shop.  I was right.  The rain really got the creek riled up.

9:30AM
Need gas (not bad at $3.07/gallon).  No, the sexy little Camero is not mine... but it was nice to include in my shot.  (I tried to be inconspicuous... taking the picture out my back window.)

3:00PM (approximately)
The rest of the morning and into the early afternoon there was nothing interesting to photograph.


Then I passed by "The M.U.L.E" - those of you who played video games in the 80's might recognize this guy.  The "8-pixel" Mule you would use when you went to 'hunt the wumpus'.

It's actually part of the Niagara Power & Pump Plant in Lewiston, NY.  Not sure of the exact purpose this giant metal box serves, but it's always there... the hubby and I are pretty sure it's a crane of some sort.

Spring in Buffalo has arrived... the ice is gone from the river and the boats are returning to their slips.

5:30PM
Almost home... I couldn't resist stopping by another waterfall.  This is an updated shot of the same location photographed in March.  Again, no more ice and lots of water flowing thanks to two days of rain.

When I get home, it's time to let the kids out and take a peek at the gardens.  Any flowers yet?
Not many... except my Purple Myrtle.
The corner garden is doing well.  No blooms yet & it needs mulch, too.  I'll try to get to that this month.


7pm
Time to swim!  I don't usually swim on Wednesdays, but I found out on Monday that the pool is closing for construction on Friday (they're ripping up the old tiles and putting in new ones, so we'll have a nice new pool this fall).  So I got one last workout in before I need to find a new place to swim.  UGH!

NEW SHAMPOO!!
I know, who gets excited about shampoo???  I don't usually, but when the hubby and I were on our "honeymoon" last week, the lodge we were staying at had this amazing smelling shampoo for the guests.  We had to see if it was available here... and, well, it was!  HOORAY!

(NOTE:  If you want to see some really nice photos - loads better than today's 12 - click on the 'honeymoon' link above.  Good stuff).

After the swim workout, it's time to relax with a book.  This is what I'm reading now...
The Elegance of the Hedgehog, the May selection for my Book Club.  Not sure about this one... kind of a downer thus far.  Maybe it will pick up once I get past the first few chapters (I'm on Chapter 3 now).  Anyone want to comment???  Love to hear your thoughts.

A View from the Porch
My final shot for May is my monthly view from the front porch.  The lawn got its first mowing of the year on Monday and has been soaking up rain showers since then, so it's looking lush and green.


That's it for another rainy month around Buffalo.  Around here, it's 'May showers bring June flowers' - so next month you should see LOTS of color.  I know you'll see lots of Pink since the Komen Run is all about the Pink Ribbons.

See you then!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Honeymoon

The Hubby and I are coming up on our 15th wedding anniversary.

The week we got married we put a down payment on our first home.  That was our honeymoon money... (we are very practical). Since then, we've been spent much of our free time (and spare cash) on improvements for our current home... vacations have not been very high on the priority list.

Till this year.
We're caught up on most projects, we're not ready for others, so this year... it's a cross-country country trip! New York to California for 4-days of pampering in the middle of mountain-hugged giant forest - Sequoia & Kings Canyon.

This was a trip of a lifetime!  And it was absolutely perfect.  Perfect weather, perfect accomodations, perfect time with my love.  I know you would have loved to be there... but since it was the honeymoon, you'll have to settle for photos.  Here are a few of my favorite (click on the pictures to see them in full view).

Enjoy!
Palm trees????  
We aren't in New York any more!
Can you believe this sunset?  
On our way up, through the foothills, toward our final destination.
This was our view almost every morning when we walked from our room to the lodge for breakfast.
 
If you ever go to Sequoia National Park... and need a place to stay, 
The Wuksachi Lodge is the place to be - excellent rooms, fantastic food, and friendly staff.

DAY 1 
 
Our first waterfall, of many, during the trip.
 
We hiked though the woods... surrounded by giant peaks...
... ending up here.
This picture doesn't show how tired we were... 
2.25 mile walk, uphill, in the snow with another 2.25 to get back to the car.
But it was SO worth it... see the giant waterfall in the background?

DAY 2
Our first visit to the big trees... with a perfect blue sky.
Can you see me???  I'm that teeny, tiny, white X at the base of the tree.
These are BIG trees.
REALLY BIG... can you find me in this photo?
Such gigantic trees.  Such a small pinecone.
From snow covered... to the BEACH!
We snaked our way down 5000' of mountain into the foothills near Potwisha, CA.
My beautiful husband snapped this shot of a beautiful waterfall.
Here's the view from the other side of the falls.
 
My FAVORITE wildflower photo.  California Milkweed.
These trees are too tall, they won't fit in the frame.
 
Yes, you could build a small house in here!
Soooooo Big!
REALLY BIG!
The General Sherman is the largest living thing on the planet Earth.

DAY 3
On our way to Cedar Grove, through Kings Canyon
 
Waterfalls, probably only visible in spring, popped up everywhere!
With others raging... like Grizzly Falls
and...
 
Roaring River Falls
A look up to where all this water came from - snow melt off the mountain peaks.
What?!  Another waterfall?  This one's not on any map, may not be around for long.
It surprised us while on our way back to Wuksachi.
Lupine with Ladybug

DAY 4
Our final day with the big trees.  
 
The hubby, with the Mark Twain Stump (the tree was cut down in 1891).
 
The Nation's Christmas Tree.  The General Grant.
 
This big boy fell in 1985.  (Can you see me?)

After vising the big trees, we went down (to 3000') to see the wildflowers.  
Here's some Yucca that was burned in a recent fire.
 
Best shot of the week??
How about this one?


On our final night, we snapped a self portrait.
I call it...
"The Honeymooners"

 Good night!

If you'd like to see the full set, click here, to link to it.  As always, thank you for visiting.  I hope you enjoyed my photos.  Please do not use any photo without permission.  I welcome your requests.

Friday, May 7, 2010

An amazing adventure!

Got home this morning from a 4-day visit to
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.


(click on photo to see it in all its splendor)

More to come...