Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grand Finale

OK, I know, two days of fireworks???  Well, that's what we had where I live.  A couple last night and this one tonight, sponsored by one of the local bands of Cahuilla Indians and held at the Fantasy Springs Casino & golf course.  Everyone was parking their cars in vacant lots and bringing out the camp chairs and drinks.  I thought it was a great display and in conjunction with the display, they played music on their radio station to accompany the fireworks.  A nice night was has by all.

"Grand Finale"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happy Independence Day

We celebrate Independence Day yet we call it the 4th of July, rarely by it's real name.  We don't call Christmas December 25h Day or Thanksgiving the 4th Thursday in November do we?  Interesting that we seem unable to call this important day in our history by it's true name.  Either way, have a great day.

"Happy Independence Day"     © Kathy Dunham 201

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Subway Art

When they cleaned up the NY subways they did a great job of incorporating art into the subterranean tunnels.  Most of it is mosaics, which is easy to clean.  These little critters remind you that it's the stop for the zoo in Central Park.

"Subway Art "      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Yellow Dahlias

What could be more heartwarming than a bouquet of bright yellow dahlias?  OK, a good glass of wine maybe.  I wish it was possible to grow theses beauties here in the desert but alas, it just gets too hot.  And with temps around 112 this time of year they wouldn't survive very long.  But a quick drive to the Getty Museum in LA and I can get my fill of a wide variety of dahlias.

"Yellow Dahlias"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Strange Perch

This young barn owl found a new place to rest on the sign of a veterinary hospital.  Strange choice, maybe he was injured and needed a doctor. Who knows.  He wasn't afraid of us and made no attempt to leave. 

"Strange Perch"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Friday, June 24, 2011

Shafts of Light

I've seen may pictures of the slot canyons in northern Arizona but when I experienced them for the first time I was awestruck.  A definite big WOW.  The way the light bounced off the walls and when shafts of light drifted down through the narrow slots you couldn't help but have your breath taken away.  A truly spectacular sight.

"Shafts of Light"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Snow Ladies

The botanical garden in Spokan is beautiful in the summer.  Full of blooming plants, I'm sure you'd find a couple of favorites.  These dwarf Shasa Daisies are aptly named "Snow Lady".  So I guess a bunch of them would be considered "Ladies"

"Snow Ladies"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Doge's Palace

Venice is my favorite city in the world.  The history, the architecture, the art and everything else that's unique to Venice.  These columns on the Doge's Palace show a definite Moorish influence.  Several decades ago they were black with soot and grime.  Today, thanks to modern technology, they have been restored to their glistening white beauty.

"Doge's Palace"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Taking a Break - Boboli Gardens

After having climbed more stairs than I thought possible, I understood why this couple was taking a break.  No one told me that Boboli Gardens was built on a hillside but if it was good enough for the Medici's it was good enough for me.  I can't believe they climbed all those stairs very often.  But there was a great view of Florence from the top.  I guess all good things come at a price.

"Taking a Break - Boboli Gardens"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Cascading Clematis

In the small village town of Tremolat, France is a gorgeous four star hotel.  Loaded with charm and ambiance, a great restaurant and a garden with beautiful plants and flowers.  Never before or since have I seen so many spectacular clematis in bloom as I have at this hidden treasure.

"Cascading Clematis"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pink Peony

For one short week in June I can find peonies in my local floral shop.  It's too hot to grow them where I live and it gets too expensive to travel to France where I first experienced this beautiful flower.  I enjoy its faint hint of a fragrance and of course, the bountiful cluster of petals that make this flower look like a cheerleader's pom pom.

"Pink Peony"       © Kathy Dunham 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011

Iris in Lily Pond

The sun wasn't out when we visited Monet's Garden but that didn't stop me from taking a ton of pictures.  This one was a little different.  Dutch Iris aren't as spectacular as the bearded iris but in this setting they make a classy statement.

"Iris in Lily Pond"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, June 12, 2011

No. 15

Italian house signs can be plain or fancy.  But the blue on white ceramic numbers was something I found all over Italy.  The spray painted version isn't as attractive but does serve a purpose.  The flowering vine adds an artistic touch.

"No. 15"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Friday, June 10, 2011

Anazasi Ruins

Canyon de Chelly, Arizona was once the home of the ancient Anazasi.  Nestled on the canyon walls, these cliff dwellings provided shelter and protection from invaders.  No one knows when or why they left the area but thank goodness it's now a National Monument under the protection of both the Federal Government and the Navajo Nation.

"Anazasi Ruins"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


I've never seen a birdhouse with a door knob.  But this on is pretty fancy

"Birdhouse"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Through the Looking Glass

Or should I say "Looking Through the Rain Drop"?  I was visiting my brother in Central California this weekend when we got hit by a couple of rain storms.  But when the sun was out in the morning, how the world looked different when looking through rain drops.

"Through the Looking Glass"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Friday, June 3, 2011

Sunset Rose

The hour before sunset is always a pleasant time of the day and today was no exception.  I happened to be at the Empire Polo Grounds in Indio, CA and spent some time enjoying the roses in the beautiful maintained rose garden next to the polo fields.  I find that the late afternoon sun makes the colors of the petals come alive.

"Sunset Rose"       © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Rain Drops on the Tulip

It was a damp morning and by the time we arrived at the garden the flowers were covered with rain drops.  Descanco Gardens in La Canada, CA is always beautiful rain or shine.

"Rain Drops on the Tulip"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Memorial Day

Today we need to remember all those men and women who have given so much to keep our country free.

"Memorial Day"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Night Time in Vernazza

The small towns on the Cinque Terre in Italy are quaint and charming but at night they take on a different feel after the tourists are gone.  Quiet and peaceful, it's a pleasure to stroll the streets, stop at an outdoor cafe for a drink or coffee and enjoy the ambiance.

"Night Time in Vernazza"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Knock, Knock

Even though there's a door bell, I think you're going to have to use the door knocker.  It's apparent the bell has been painted over a time or two.

"Knock, Knock"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Rain Drops

Oriental Poppies are so dramatic and after they've been rained on they take on another look.  But it's the centers I love.  Especially the dark colors.

"Rain Drops"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Roman Amphitheater

Roman amphitheaters can be found all over Italy and in many European countries but this little treasure sits just below the hilltop town of Volterra in Tuscany.  Known for it's alabaster, the small town of Volterra has this hidden treasure that many tourists miss. In fact, many tourists miss seeing the town as it's quite small and a bit out of the way.  But I assure you that it is worth the visit.

"Roman Amphitheater"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sunny Sunflowers

I know why Van Gogh liked to paint sunflowers.  At least I know why he should.  They are cheery, bright, make you smile and feel good.  And I bet you could come up with more reasons.  When I see sunflowers they always brighten my day.  I hope they have the same affect on you.

"Sunny Sunflowers"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Flying Saucers

We've been having some extremely strong winds off and on for the past couple of weeks and sometimes we get these weird looking clouds. 

"Flying Saucers"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Friday, May 13, 2011

Let's Go this Way

Sarlat, France is known for it's Fois Gras, or as we Americans call it, goose liver pate.  But the French version is awesome.  In recognition of their fame, the town has erected these bronze geese in the heart of the old medevial section.  But they look a bit confused don't they?. 

"Let's Go This Way"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Birds or Orchids

I found these tiny (slightly bigger than my thumb) orchids on a country road in France.  Because of their size, I almost missed them.  And it wasn't until I reviewed my photos that I discovered the resemblance to a pair of flying birds. 

"Birds or Orchids"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Purple Clematis

Another harbinger of spring, the clematis comes in various colors and shapes.  Singles, doubles, white, pinks and purples.  The intricate centers present an unusual texture and start to turn brown as they age.

"Purple Clematis"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Monday, May 9, 2011


The small town of Issiageac in the Dordogne region of France holds their "market" on Sundays and there's lots of things to see and buy.  But I like to take to the side streets when I find neat things like this letter drop. 

"Lettres"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Friday, May 6, 2011

Not Derby Material

He may be beautiful but this not Kentucky Derby material.  He's a cow pony pure and simple and enjoys the finer things in life out in the country.

"Not Derby Material"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Looking Down the Forum

The Roman Forum reeks of history.  From Julius Caesar to the Vestal Virgins this was where it was happening in the old days of Rome.  And every time I walk down these streets I feel as if I'm transported back in time and can feel the energy of those who walked before me.

"Looking Down the Forum"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

White Lilacs

Most of think of purples and lavenders when lilacs are mentioned. However, there are white ones and they are stunning. I have to get up close and smell their wonderful fragrance to know they're lilacs. It just takes a little getting used to the idea of white flowers when I think about these fragrant beauties.

"White Lilacs"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Gondoliers at Night

Day or night, you can always find a gondola in Venice.  These are wearing the traditional outfit, black and white striped shirt and straw hat with ribbon trip.  Only problem is they usually take their hats off once they have a fare and are out in the canals.  Guess they don't want to lose it in the water.

"Gondoliers at Night"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, May 1, 2011


If you don't have a green thumb, then this is the plant for you.  One of the easiest growing flowers, the amaryllis can actually be grown in water.  There are special containers for growing them this way or you can plant them in soil and do it the old fashioned way.  I personally think that doing it in water is easiest.  And they are so dramatic when in bloom.  Ranging from whites to reds with a few pinks thrown in for good measure, amaryllis are strikingly beautiful.

"Amaryllis"        © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Feathers in My Beard

The bearded iris is an elegant flower.  It comes in many colors and combinations of colors. It's amazing when you find a white one trimmed in purple or a pale yellow iris with shades of rust painted on the petals.  But this is the first time I've noticed these strange "feathers" attached to the beard.  I don't know if it's an anomaly or bred into the flower.  Whatever the cause I think it's cool.

"Feathers in My Beard"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Dinner on a Side Canal

Venice is one canal after another.  No streets, no cars, just canals as a means of moving about the city.  Most tourists stick to the main channels such as the Grand Canal.  But the treasures of the city can be found by taking a less traveled path down the smaller side canals.  I came across this restaurant on a "Ghost Tour" of Venice one evening.  It was fun and gave us a glimpse into another side of the city.

"Dinner on a Side Canal"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Monday, April 25, 2011

Me and My Brother

On the patio outside my bedroom is a mourning dove's nest in the calliandra bushes.  I watched the nest being built and hoped that the gardeners wouldn't disturb it before the babies hatched and were safely on their way.  Luck was with us and last week they left the nest.  Thank goodness as the gardeners have given the bush a big trimming.  But the two young doves have stayed close to home along with their mother who still feeds them.  Some day soon they will be gone and I'll miss their beautiful cooing sounds.

"Me and My Brother"        © Kathy Dunham 2011

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Time

I hope everyone had an enjoyable Easter with lots of goodies and time spent with family and friends.

"Easter Time"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, April 21, 2011

White Rhododendrons

A great sign of spring......  blooming rhododendrons and azaleas.

" White Rhododendrons"     © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Empty Bench

A solitary bench in the early morning light.  Will someone sit and enjoy the view today?  Maybe relax and read a book?  What else are benches good for? 

"The Empty Bench"       © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Italian Paint Job

What a taxi!!   I spotted this in downtown Florence, Italy.  If nothing else it should make you smile.  And there isn't a bare spot on this PT Cruiser.  

"Italian Paint Job"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Monday, April 18, 2011

Curly Qs

I don't have a clue what this flower is but I was fascinated with all the curls as they unfurled. 

"Curly Qs"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Chinese Magnolia #2

When I was young, my mother had a Chinese Magnolia tree in the front yard, just outside my bedroom window.  She loved it as it was an early harbinger of Spring as they opened their blossoms on naked tree branches.  So every time I see one of these magnificent trees in bloom I always think of Mom. 

"Chinese Magnolia #2"       © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Don't Eat the Flowers!

It seems sheep enjoy the wildflowers as much as humans do, just a bit differently.  This field was covered with small yellow wildflowers and what seemed like as many sheep as well.  I'm sure they enjoyed their treat.

"Don't Eat the Wildflowers!"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Not a Yellow Daffodil

It's amazing how many different color combinations daffodils come in.  They aren't all yellow anymore.

"Not a Yellow Dafffodil"       © Kathy Dunham 2011

Monday, April 11, 2011

On the Hunt

The bees are really busy this time of year.  Lots of pollen for them to spread around.  And thanks to them we get to enjoy the fruits of their work, no pun intended!.

"On the Hunt"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Poppy Time

One of the beauties of living in California is getting to see large expanses of of our state flower in bloom this time of year.  But even if it's only a plant or two tucked in a small garden spot, the California Poppy is a cheery reminder of Spring. 

"Poppy Time"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Drops on a Web

I"m not sure the spider that constructed this web was ready to turn it into an obstacle course, but he's going to be challenged getting from one end to the other.

"Drops on a Web"    © Kathy Dunham 2011

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Spring, Spring, Spring

Nothing says Spring like a cherry tree in full bloom.  I've never seen the ones in Washington, D.C. but hear it's a spectacular sight.  This was the best I could in Southern California. 

"Spring, Spring, Spring"      © Kathy Dunham 2011

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

In the Pink

I love cactus blooms.  They come in so many different shapes, sizes and colors.  And here in Southern California it's easy to find them just about anywhere.  I found these outside the library at Pasadena City College.

"In the Pink"      © Kathy Dunham 2011