Here in Malibu
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May 31, 2010

Sun and sky

Memorial Day sunrise in Malibu

Yeah, another sunrise. Or, look! Another sunrise!

May 30, 2010

Oh what a morning

morning on the bluffWe've struggled into spring this year here in Malibu, with prolonged cold and wet (for us, anyway) weather. This weekend, we've been granted a reprieve. The sun rose, and it was warm. Clouds never formed. The wind, when it stirred at all, was gentle, just a breeze, really.

Of course this means everyone's headed for the beach, but on a morning as lovely as this one, in spots not many people know how to find, it's easy to say c'est la vie, and feel incredibly fortunate just to be here.mountain view

May 29, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Golden Mansion


Here's one of the last of the old-school mobile homes in the Cove, which had names like Homette and Star and Golden Mansion. Mine's a Meteor, though the implication it's headed anywhere on the cobwebbed chassis that lies beneath in the cool, cool shadows, is just a bit misleading.

May 28, 2010

Through fresh eyes


Getting a new camera is like seeing things afresh, and I can't help think that, with my new little Canon, the blues here are bluer, the shadows truer, and the pinks? Magnifique!


May 27, 2010

Touch of gold


So it rained here this morning, actual raindrops that shocked the cat and thrilled the dogs and sent me searching for a bit of warmth, a floral substitute for sunlight.

May 26, 2010

It's egret time in Cross Creek

egrets nesting

Despite the fact the owners of the little shopping center at Cross Creek trim the trees so hard each spring they resemble toothpicks, the egrets still find a way to build their nests. Look closely and you're see a pair of birds perched at the edge, each warming her clutch of eggs. I'm pretty sure there's at least one more somewhere in the (rebounding) canopy, ready to rain down bird poop (and fish guts! Yum!) on lucky visitors below.

May 25, 2010

On the bluff

sunday morning

One of the things I love about this place is how, as dawn breaks, the dozens of different birds who live in the trees here start the day with song.

May 24, 2010

The big chill

the garden (kinda) growsI glanced at the thermometer yesterday afternoon -- 61 degrees. On a sunny day. In the middle of the afternoon. It's the chilliest spring I can remember since moving here 15 16 years ago.

No wonder the garden up at the barn is growing so slowly, the corn unwilling to commit, the sunflowers pretty much refusing to even sprout, and the tomatoes hunkered down as though expecting snow.

May 23, 2010

Here comes the sun

sunday morning

It's chilly here this morning, in the low 50s and already the wind is kicking up, none of which keeps surfers out of the (even colder -- 52 degrees) water.first ride

May 22, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Love...war?


Not sure what to make of this vanity plate cruising Calabasas the other day. Is it that they do, in fact, love war? Was the car part of a divorce settlement, so it's literally the result of a love war? Or maybe it's a family of philosophers, publicly working their way through the tangled ties between love and war. That one, I get.

May 21, 2010

Sweet surprise at the farmer's market

Dear Andrea,

FIrst this:cherries

And then this:pie

Equals this:cherry pie



May 20, 2010

Green and greener

maisieWhat with all the fog and mist and even rain lately, things up at the barn are looking mighty verdant.

And for fans of Maisie the Teacup Lab®, here she is, keeping a vigilant eye out for her mortal enemy, the ground squirrel.

May 19, 2010

On the verge

Walk on the beach here and there's always a boulder or two, a trickle of dirt, a fresh pile of rubble as the soft and porous bluffs crumble away. rock slide

Makes living in the monoliths hunkered high above the tide line, well, interesting.the verge

May 18, 2010

Rainy day

That's right, rainy. As in, it's May 15 16 17 (already? how did that happen?) and IT'S RAINING IN MALIBU.
rainy day

In looking for photographic proof that didn't involve another grim and gloomy shot of the grim and gloomy sky (full disclosure -- I'm loving this weather) I found some raindrops on flower petals. See?blue

And just as I aimed the lens at this wonderfully, vividly, ear-splittingly orange trumpet vine, someone crawled out and, I'm pretty sure, scolded me.hello there

May 17, 2010

May gray today

It dripped here all night long, a low-lying layer of mist so persistent, everything is slick and shiny, wet and muffled and wrapped in gray. gray (and Maisie)



May 16, 2010

Couple of dogs with mustard, please

That fringe of gold you see growing from hillsides and roadsides everywhere? Wild mustard.wild mustard

A popular condiment around here.dogs with mustard

dogs with mustard

May 15, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Lucio


Not only do the different types of flagstone at the local stone yard have names (mine is "Ridge Peak", which makes me a little crazy because really, was it a ridge or was it a peak? Make up your mind!) but it turns out the forklifts also have names. And monograms.

Say hello to "Lucio"

May 14, 2010



Men and toys power tools and fork lifts and trenching thingies and huge piles of building materials that need to be ripped with power saws or subdued with sledge hammers and really, welcome to my nervous breakdown world.

May 13, 2010

And now, a brief interlude


Things have been nutty around here lately, a bit busy and dirty and occasionally loud, so here's the heart of a sweet bunch of flowers whose soft colors and creamy textures give Valium a run for its (Big Pharma) money.

May 12, 2010

The remodel moves outdoors

What's going on out there?and it begins


Oh my!during

May 11, 2010

Oh, deer? No, dear...

What's this, a herd of deer in the heart of the 'Bu?Oh dear...

Really?A herd of deer?

Yes really. Really good statues, that is, and they've got everyone in town doing double-takes. Lord I love it here.Well, statues, anyway

May 10, 2010

Springtime in Malibu

You'll see lots of lawns and lush plantings in the gardens of Malibu, but in the untouched areas, it's desert plants that flourish in our naturally arid landscape.agave

And for this hummingbird, that appears to be A-OK.hummingbird

May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

headed upstreamWe've got a new brood of ducklings in the pond, but the mother wisely keeps them far from sight. So here's a shot from a previous year, a little flotilla of fuzz.

May 8, 2010

Signs of Saturday: Duuuuuuuude!


Dude: (düd) n. Address used in a formal greeting. Origin:

Dude, seriously, you have to ask?

May 7, 2010

Lilac frenzy at the farmer's market

lilac frenzy

Not cheap, these harbingers of spring, at $10, $20 and $30 bucks a bunch, but this stand at the Santa Monica farmer's market this week was mobbed.

The lilacs we see in SoCal were bred for our mild climate and one of the things we gave up, since we don't have the annual freeze the Eastern varieties require, is the fragrance. Oh, you'll get the bit of lilac scent if you get close enough and breathe in hard enough, but it's faint.

More lilac info in a piece I wrote in the LAT, and at the Descanso Gardens web site.

May 6, 2010

Daybreak at the surf break

Daybreak in the Cove:thursday sunrise

And surf break in the Cove:Thursday surf

Thursday surf

(And look -- on the lens. A finger print? Oy.)

May 5, 2010

Splendor in the grass (clippings)

Jake rolls

We're awash in mulch up at the barn, much of it tree bark from some fire prevention trimming that's going on, and some of it plain old grass clippings which, for Jake the Giant Puppy Dog, (112 pounds at the vet's the other day!) are not at all plain, and never get old.

May 4, 2010

Work ethic

So I'm at Treeland in Calabasas yesterday, looking for lavender, when this golf ball flies by, except it's humming, and then it's hovering, right at eye level.

Not a golf ball at all, of course, but a bumblebee, big and round and staring right at me. I missed that shot, unfortunately, and barely got these, as the bee hated the little snickety sound of the camera's auto focus.bumblebee

She'd fly back and forth and away, yet always return to the work of pulling pollen from these blooms, her legs, extended in flight, coated in gold.

Over at the checkout counter, the resident cat worked just as hard, if not harder. It's just a question of perspective.


May 3, 2010

Meanwhile, back at the rancho...

sycamore hike

While we're slogging through Monday traffic, through unbearably bad news about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (remember those?) and that oil catastrophe in the Gulf (spill, baby, spill) some lucky souls have taken a step back in time here in the Malibu rancho.

May 2, 2010

Hibiscus blossom


One of the things I adore about flowers is how utterly forthright they are about sex.

May 1, 2010

Signs of Saturday: ♥ it or leave it?

Go home

This little spat near Hewitt and 5th streets in downtown LA just cracks me up.

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