Archive of ‘Desert’ category

Picnic at Hanging Rocks

desert boulders

I am painfully aware that if I waited just two more months, I could pretend that the post right before this titled “Happy New Year” is in fact from 2015 instead of 2014 and all would be right with the world. Well, sort of. As I figure out what type of space I want this to be, forgive me for treating my blog with the same zeal I reserve for doing my taxes.


With the shorter days and cooler weather, I was inspired to get out of the house for a change and be outside again. We have this spectacular boulder landscape right outside our door. I’m always reminded of the dreamy Peter Weir film Picnic at Hanging Rock where young girls dressed in white Edwardian frocks mysteriously disappear on a class excursion to a huge boulder. Dre and I took some music, a bottle of wine and a wedge of cheese and off we set to find our own hanging rock.


Picnic at Hanging Rocks

We managed to find a remote place that felt like we were on Mars, but only a five minute walk from home. It was just so easy. Why don’t we do this more often we asked ourselves? Unlike the girls in the movie, we did make it home, but if we had disappeared forever, I might not have minded.

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

I hope you all had a happy new year! We awoke on New Years Eve to a gorgeous blanket of snow. There’s nothing like opening your eyes to all white. I needed sunglasses inside with all the light bouncing off the snow.


snow1We were invited to a friend’s house party to ring in the new year, but got lost along the way on the dirt roads in our neighborhood, an easy thing to do considering there are no street signs. Without cell service to double-check the directions, we just guessed and drove up a steep, snowy driveway on the side of a serious hill. The homestead cabin at the top had a porch light burning, so we were cautiously optimistic.

Not wanting to get shot, I called out “Hello, is this Kelly’s house?” The front door opened and a stranger answered. Now here’s where the story goes totally “Pioneertown.” The guy insisted we come inside to warm up and he’d help us find our way. Andre tried to protest, but the man said “It’s really too cold out here to figure this out, come inside and have some scotch.” It sounded a little crazy, but his adorable dogs ran around our feet and next thing you know, I was drinking scotch and talking to the man’s wife, a former monk from Burma, with their white dog curled up in my lap. She had traveled to Joshua Tree maybe fifteen, twenty years ago and stayed after falling in love with the desert and her husband. I snuck this shot of Andre inside their cabin, laughing at our weird predicament.


Our neighbors were charming people. Nothing like showing up unannounced on someone’s doorstep to get a real measure of a person. We toasted to the new year, as well as to new friends, then made our way on to the original party, which involved too many margaritas and Cards Against Humanity. Here’s hoping for a new year full of surprises.

Taking Another Look

Taking Another Look

Just your run-of-the-mill desert scrub brush, right? Maybe look again….

horned lizardThis guy!!!! I spotted him right by the house while carrying in groceries. He was so confident in his camouflage that he didn’t even flinch when I moved in for a closer look. He stayed while I grabbed my camera. Who knows, maybe he didn’t want to give up such a prime blending spot?

Up close his texture is amazing. He’s basically wearing lizard armor. Based on the crazy shit I’ve seen around my house, no doubt he needs it! I have a little animal guide to Joshua Tree with pictures (because I’m five-years-old) and I love crossing off each one as I see it. Horned Lizard I have you checked!


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