Here in Malibu
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December 31, 2013

Adios, 2013

Sun setting, year waning, hawk in the oaks. How did the year fly by so fast?

this is los angeles

December 30, 2013

The goofball among us

oh walter

The puppy's beginning to think his name is "Oh Walter". (And yes, that's drywall dust on the floor.) (Again.)

December 29, 2013

The beginning in the end

The between week of the holidays is always busy here as both Angelenos and out-of-towners head west (well, south) for the beach. Traffic gets tricky, parking gets scarce, and very pale people in bathing suits brave the chilly surf.

Here's the Point Dume headlands this morning, sand and water churned by santana winds.


Even with little rain, the giant coreopsis are waking up, summer brown giving way to winter green, and soon enough, our yearly flood of gold.

giant coreopsis wakes up

I don't know why but the water off the headlands always has more layers of blue than other places:


All morning long, persistent, insistent, a clan of sea lions (males molting, females close to giving birth) bellowed.

point dume sea lions

And look -- that's the last remnant of last night's fog, shredded and shoved aside by these wild winter winds.


December 28, 2013

Signs of Saturday: prime etail


The Malibu Inn, the funky beachside cafe where Dave and I celebrated the close of escrow on our Paradise Cove trailer mobile home back in the day, has changed and changed and changed again over the years. And while a crew was hard at work this week for the new(est) lease holder, the wind did a bit of re-arranging on the sign offering up (r)etail space for rent.

December 27, 2013


hello, Walt

I ran out of time to shoot a new photo today so...Walt. Any complaints?

December 26, 2013

The day after

Already 72 degrees here at sunrise, wind on the move, horizon scraped clean.


Downtown loomed:

the downtown LA horizon

A sailboat bobbed:


Sand blew:

morning light

Palm trees leaned:

palm trees blowing

And for a little minute, everything went pink.

sunrise beach

December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

merry california christmas

xoxo from Malibu.


December 24, 2013

The night before


Tick tock...

December 23, 2013

The sycamores

sycamore limbs

Winter mode.

December 22, 2013

Brrr blanc

Here's the lake just two days ago, aka 'last fall':

morning lake

And here's the lake this morning, on the first full day of winter.

santa monica mountains

Aka 'it's 34 degrees so go home put your jammies back on and get back in bed with the crossword'.

hello, winter

December 21, 2013

Signs of Saturday: Winter solstice

It's the winter solstice, at 9:11 a.m. to be precise.

solstice sunrise

Here's the (bird-filled) sunrise--

last sunrise of fall

The sun moves fast and low across the sky today--

solstice on the way

...delivers us into the longest night of the year.

sunrise before solstice

Tomorrow's skies will be brighter for just a tiny bit longer.

Happy (true) New Year.


December 20, 2013

Touch of gold

I'm pleased to report that somehow--

in the distance

...a tree here in the now-brown mountains:


...didn't get the memo:

brightest done = dun.

golden leaves



December 19, 2013

Thank you, doctor

Dr. Walt

Walt prescribes chicken soup. In a bowl on the floor.

December 18, 2013

I hab a code


My hair hurts.

December 17, 2013


I thought I could skip a day--


...and not post a photo.


I was wrong.


December 16, 2013

The kite population doubles

The white-tailed kite I've been watching for the last few years up at the bluff now has a mate.

TWO white-tailed kites

Judging from how interested the crow are, she must be someone famous.

the white-tailed kite gets a partner

white-tailed kites

white-tailed kite

December 15, 2013

Postcards from the hedge

Maisie and Walt each had a Kodak moment on the walk this morning and because, well, just because, actually, I have decided to share.

Walt having a glamour moment:


And Maisie at that exact oooahhh moment.

Miss Maisie

Happy Sunday!

December 14, 2013

Signs of Saturday: 27

27 degrees, that is.

The morning that this happened:

this is LA?

This (frozen lake, ducks land, drake belly flops on the ice, skids to a stop) happened:

cold duck(s)

December 13, 2013

The remodel continues

Bedroom number two of three went from bad:

Day 1

To worse:


Can you tell he's standing on THE GROUND?

oy VEY

After which this actually looked great:


A few weeks ago I showed you this:

the final frontier

And now, with the jack-and-jill door to the bathroom gone (that's the door to the closet in the photo) the drywall up, the hardwood down, and the walls primed and ready for paint, it's this:

almost there...

I hear angels singing.

December 12, 2013

Here in The Grove

Not quite feeling the holiday spirit? A nighttime visit to The Grove will take care of that.

Enormous tree?


tree at the Grove

Zillions of twinkly lights?


lights at the Grove

Grinchy thoughts banished by the spectacle?

You bet.

holiday lights at the Grove

December 11, 2013

Iceberg blue

If, as you look at the sky in the photo, you picture the frigid core of a calving iceberg, you'll get a sense of your shivering (22 degrees in the mountains when we took our walk, a bit warmer at the beach when we got this shot, but honestly? Not much...) photog.

And to anyone reading from a colder place, feel free to laugh out loud. It warms the air.


December 10, 2013

Deep freeze

The little lake here in the mountains has been rimmed with ice the last few mornings. (I can't even think about what's been happening to the bougainvillea since the thermometer started taking its nightly dive into the 20s.)

icy lake

December 9, 2013

Omnivore *

About an hour after this walk in the woods, Walter George "Huck Finn" Clooney chewed up a roll of super-absorbent paper towels. Twelve hours later, symptoms (I'll spare you) ensued. We're now waiting for the vet to call back.

Oh Walt.


* Update Pupdate: The details continue to be disgusting but the gist is, Walt (unlike the bank account) is going to be OK.

December 8, 2013

After the rain

after the rain

One minute the fog was belly-to-the-ground, the next it lifted, shreds and spirals drifting into sky so bright you had to blink, blink again.

December 7, 2013

Signs of Saturday: Cold and colder

A little weather?


A bit of rain?

freezing rain

COLD weather, with freezing rain, and more to come.

37 degrees at 8:30 a.m. In SoCal.

December 6, 2013

Freeze frame

We knew it was cold when the heater, which is set to 55 degrees overnight, kicked on at 3 a.m. What wasn't quite clear until heading out with the dogs after sunrise was exactly how cold it had gotten in the Santa Monica Mountains last night.

How cold, you ask? This cold:


chilly is an understatement


frosty SoCal morning

<not even winter yet


Makes that frost and snow advisory from the National Weather Service spring to life.

December 5, 2013

The sunrise here this morning


sun on the way

thursday morning beach

the beach this morning

thursday sunrise

December 4, 2013

When all else fails...

I left my camera in the barn so for today, we'll just look at Walter's puppy face.

oh walter

December 3, 2013

Let's check in on Maisie and Walt

It's been a few weeks since we checked in on the chuckleheads dogs. They were racing around like maniacs the other evening and I don't think there's a single photo that's actually in focus.

First, they hear something. Deer, I think.

they hear the herd of deer

Then they catch the scent.


They're out there, Walt's sure of it.

where is she?

You know who else is out there?



the chase

She's not putting up with any crap, though.

ok, not so dignified

So Walt backs off and the pair of them patrol, keeping the woods safe for one more day.


And btw, Miss Maisie is celebrating her 8th birthday today.

the picture of dignity

She has expressed a birthday wish:

of course.

December 2, 2013

Egret at the lake

morning egret

All of us, egrets included, are hoping for some rain.

December 1, 2013

One last Florida photo

I didn't think I caught a shot of the little alligator, and from the angle here, you can tell I very nearly didn't.

gator or cayman or croc or something


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