Oasis in a Sea of Ugly

Statement of fact: I don’t like the look of my “village”.

It resembles a village as much as WalMart resembles a Chanel boutique.

Oasis (plural: oases) An oasis is a location with water in a desert, or figuratively can be a happy place surrounded by sadness, which is exactly what I discovered today.

In the almost forty years I’ve lived here, local elected officials (90% of whom I’ve consistently voted against) have destroyed any and all coastal personality by tearing down most of the original buildings and erecting sharp cornered ugly institutional-looking boxes.

Have I mentioned that it’s ONE BLOCK from the beach? You’d never know it, though. It makes me angry. They could have done so much better and it’s as if the designers and architects made a conscious effort to destroy the organic relationship we have with the sand and the Pacific ocean. It’s mindboggling, it truly is.

Because of that, I normally stay away from going there and when visitors come, we go to the beach but don’t hang around or patronize the stores or restaurants. It’s depressing.

However, I actually discovered a couple of gems, two little oases wedged between hulking sad monstrosities; a sanctuary.

I’ve been searching for a birthday gift for DIL and we share a common love of crystals and gems. I heard of a place off the beaten path downtown and thought I’d stop by. I didn’t have high hopes though, but was more than pleasantly surprised by The Village Rock Shop on State Street.

From the moment I walked in, I was surrounded by positive energy and a huge array of rocks and gifts. For DIL, I found an Angel Aura Tower. Doesn’t that sound mystical and intriguing? It’s formed as a result of the alchemical process that bonds platinum and silver, sometimes gold, into pure quartz. It is the perfect gift for anyone who seeks guidance and inspiration from the angels. This magical stone is a powerful aid in getting in touch with celestial beings, exactly right for a mom of two, haha.

Directly next door is another shop I recommend: Wild Gold Gift Shop. It’s beyond adorable. Check out their Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wild_gold_shop/ I spoke with the husband of the owner, Kim Keenan, and he said they were still working on the website, so I can’t link to it right now.

If you’re in the Carlsbad area and as disappointed as I am about what it looks like, please take the time to travel a few blocks away from the ugliness and visit these two shops. You’ll be happy you did!

Your purchases from these independent, local stores support not only the owners of the shop but also local artists and artisans.

And finally, hurry before they’re torn down and displaced to make way for more hideous, repulsive, unsightly boxes.

Bunny Breakfast

Around 6:30 this morning as I pulled back the curtains and looked out my bedroom window, I was greeted by a darling bun chewing on a few kale leaves I had picked but forgot to bring inside.

I thought I read somewhere that rabbits don’t like kale, but this little one enjoyed every bite.

What a happy way to wake up and face a new week!

Taking Flight

After my detour yesterday into the real world of misandry, defamation, domestic abuse, and the legal system, I’m back with my normally benign, unremarkable, and less incendiary topics.

Once again cleaning out the photos on my phone to make room for new memories, I came upon a series of cool pics depicting a flight home from a visit to the kids.

I had a window seat on a smaller aircraft. When we were about thirty minutes from landing I could even kinda sorta pick out my house.

It’s always bittersweet to come home. There’s no place like home but there’s no place like being with my babies, either. Sigh.

Leaving rainy PNW.

Two 1/2 hours later, SoCal coastline.

Off the coast of Carlsbad. I see Agua Hedionda lagoon and if you know where to look, I can pretty much pick out my street. It’s too bad the airlines won’t make a stop to let me off at our local airport because soon I’ll have to drive all the way back up!

Pt. Loma and the Coronado Bay Bridge. On approach to land any minute as soon as the pilot turns around.

This is how you land aircraft when the airport is situated in the downtown area. Looks scarier than it is, I think. Anyway, home sweet home!

Raven or Crow?

Both ravens and crows live in my neighborhood, but I think these two thirsty birds are crows.
What do you think?

This photo was taken as I peeked through the long pointy fronds of a ponytail palm situated directly outside my downstairs living room.

Here’s an especially informative Audubon link that helps to discern the differences between the two:https://www.audubon.org/news/how-tell-raven-crow

Where The Pomegranate Grows

Here’s the next stage of my happy pomegranate tree. I’m so excited! This is only its second year in the ground, and I’m hopeful we’ll have lots of yummy poms in the future.

Feast your eyes on this unique and lovely flower, a future pomegranate, all ruffly like a petticoat. I am obsessed with the intricacy.

Pink! Pink! Pink! Full Moon

Look up! Tonight’s Pink Full Moon is in Libra, and a full moon is always a powerful time for energy healing, to recharge our chakras and crystals.

This moon is associated with the springtime blossoming of the Phlox subulata plant, a pink wildflower native to eastern North America, according to The Old Farmer’s Almanac. The plant is commonly known as creeping phlox, moss phlox, or mountain phlox.

The Dakota tribe dubbed it the “moon when the streams are again navigable,” while the Tlingit tribe called it “budding moon of plants and shrubs,” in reference to the end of winter and the resurgence of plant growth.

Here’s another reason to look up; a Lyrids meteor shower from April 21 to 22!

The next full moon in my birthday month of May will be a more impressive spectacle because it coincides with a total lunar eclipse.

Since pink is my favorite color, let’s all set happy pink intentions!

Photo curated from https://www.facebook.com/Spiritual-Awakenings-%E0%A5%90-105433989565465/

My Beautifully Perfect Yellow Daisy

I didn’t intentionally plant this California native Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta) — she’s a happy volunteer in the front garden, but I welcome her smiling face and bright yellow petals.

The Daisy follows soft the Sun

The Daisy follows soft the Sun—
And when his golden walk is done—
Sits shyly at his feet—
He—waking—finds the flower there—
Wherefore—Marauder—art thou here?
Because, Sir, love is sweet!

We are the Flower—Thou the Sun!
Forgive us, if as days decline—
We nearer steal to Thee!
Enamored of the parting West—
The peace—the flight—the Amethyst—
Night’s possibility!

Emily Dickinson

April’s Garden Beauty

From April’s angst to something a little more palatable and because I try to always look on the bright side, these are some photos I took to cleanse my brain while the rat guy was disinfecting the shed. I carefully avoided that area…

Delosperma Cooperi – succulent ground cover against a backdrop of insane ceanothus with some (I think) Cape Daisies and Creeping Aloe.

Pride of Madeira.

A baby pomegranate!

Cloudless Sulphur Butterfly caterpillar on my Palo Verde tree.

No rats here! Just peace and serenity.

Playing Possum

Yesterday was April Fool’s Day and I had to blink twice and do a classic double take when I looked out the kitchen window and saw a fat opossum waddling through the garden. I grabbed my camera and quietly opened the screen door to get a better look.

It’s not unusual for them to be here but they’re mostly nocturnal creatures and don’t often appear during the day. If you see one at odd times like I did, don’t automatically think they’re sick. My research revealed that it’s not totally out of character if it’s a new mom who needs to bring home a lot of food for her babies.

With their poor eyesight, she didn’t seem to know or care that I was there, so I followed her a bit up the steps and over the neighbor’s fence and back again.

Opossums eat a wide variety of foods: fruits, grasses, insects, rodents (yay!) mammals, birds, fish, and even carrion. Also good to learn is that opossums are resistant to rabies and rarely carry the disease. They are extremely beneficial.

There are LOTS of mice and rats around here, so I hope she or he went home with a full belly.

I don’t know why some people think they’re ugly or scary. Isn’t this a most adorable face?

Sunday in the Garden: Downy Woodpecker

It was super quiet this morning until I heard a familiar staccato taptaptaptap, ran outside with my camera and was FINALLY able to capture a visit from my Downy Woodpecker!

Usually they’re playing hide and seek in my garden; this time he’s just over the fence on the neighbor’s palm tree. A while later, his mate came to eat in the exact same spot.

Isn’t he simply magnificent?

In many ancient cultures, the symbolism of the woodpecker is associated with wishes, luck, prosperity, and spiritual healing. The woodpecker often symbolizes new opportunities that come knocking into our lives. Other cultures consider the woodpecker to represent hard work, perseverance, strength, and determination, all positive attributes for sure! (curated from Google search)

Happy Sunday, friend!