Category Archives: California

Easing Up Slowly

We have been on ‘stay at home’ status for how long? Time feels lost in another dimension. I don’t feel like I have been stuck in a cave, because I can go out in my yard or around the neighborhood without fear. And I don’t think our Governor or health officials should cave in on their rules for re-opening our state.

California starts to open up. Now we have to decide when we feel comfortable going back into society. We can now go out for curbside pick up at more businesses, and lower risk workplaces can re-open.  Los Angeles County does have the highest number of cases in the state. Closer to home we received an email from one of our local stores telling us one of their employees tested positive for coronavirus. Just in case we get lulled into a sense of false security, it is still out there. Dr. Barbara Ferrer ,the LA County Public Health Director, says ‘expect to see more cases as we open up.’ it is still out there.

To the protestors who do not want to follow any precautions in places that still have outbreaks I say, ” Do you live in a cave? Are you not watching the news about all the people dying, ( and not all are elderly with pre-existing conditions). Have you not seen the Nurses and Doctors and other healthcare workers on the news talking about the hell it is in their communities and hospitals? ”

I can tell you from personal experience that Nursing Homes are still being impacted right now. My brother resides in one and has contracted the virus. He has been holding his own. Communication with him has been difficult. We can talk by the facility portable phone for short periods and he has Skype on his computer but the wi-fi has been spotty. The Nursing Home has started to get a good system going for scheduling communication with family now.

We are advised not to get together with our families for Mother’s Day. We will all celebrate together when this is over.

 

 

For a little help relaxing from Santa Barbara Botanic Garden on You Tube:


Stream of Consciousness Saturday, #SOCS, is hosted by Linda G Hill. The prompt word for today is ‘cave,’ use it as a noun or verb.

Featured image ‘Joshua Tree National Park’ photo by Christopher Michel on Wikimedia.org

 

 

Z is for Zephyr

Zephyr-‘a gentle breeze from the west.’ There can be gentle breezes here in the late afternoon when the sun get lower in the sky and the air is cooler. It is lovely to sit outside then and feel the sun on my skin.

There is another Zephyr than runs between Chicago and San Francisco, the California Zephyr. The video below by Trains 232 on You Tube is about 15 minutes and has some great shots of the train, tunnels, and a beautiful bridge near the end.

 


Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2020

Featured image of painting: ‘Late Afternoon, California’ by Maude Kerns via photo by Jason Taellious on Flickr.com

Y is for Yeast

One of my favorite foods is San Francisco Sourdough bread. Boudin bakery lays claim to the original sourdough bread and still has the mother dough cultivated from a goldminer’s sourdough starter. 

More history on San Francisco sourdough bread.

I have read that the flavor of this sourdough bread has to do with the bacteria that develops as part of the fermentation process and wild yeast in the air that helps create the sourdough starter.  All I know is San Francisco does have some of the best bread and I have not found bread here is Southern California that is as good. I have looked at the ingredients on some bread sold in stores and some just have flavoring and not the sourdough culture.


Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2020

Los Angeles Unified School District Feeding The Community

When the Los Angeles Unified School District had to close due to the coronavirus pandemic many worried about what would happen to all the students who depended on the schools not just for their education but for their food. LAUSD provided free meals for students who qualified from low income families in the district. Where would the children get food now? So the Governor of California and Mayor of Los Angeles announced that the schools would continue to provide meals for the students. The school meal preparation would continue and the families could pick up the food.

This expanded to giving food to anyone in need that shows up. In partnership with the Red Cross and the regional food bank the LAUSD has provided 10 million ‘grab and go’ meals since March 18 from 63 campuses across the district. (reported in the LA Times).

Featured image of LAUSD seal via Wikimedia.org, Los Angeles Regional Food Bank image from Walmart on Flickr.com


We Are The World Blogfest, #WATWB, “seeks to promote positive news. There are many an oasis of love and light out there, stories that show compassion and the resilience of the human spirit. Sharing these stories increases our awareness of hope in our increasingly dark world.”

The cohosts are:  Eric LahtiSusan ScottDan AntionDamyanti BiswasInderpreet Kaur Uppal.

Trees

“The redwoods, once seen, leave a mark or create a vision that stays with you always. No one has ever successfully painted or photographed a redwood tree. The feeling they produce is not transferable. From them comes silence and awe. It’s not only their unbelievable stature, nor the color which seems to shift and vary under your eyes, no, they are not like any trees we know, they are ambassadors from another time.” – John Steinbeck

I have written about the California coastal redwood forests in prior posts. I keep coming back because I love these trees, I love nature, and I love California. I have visited the redwood forest a couple of times and it is truly awe inspiring. We can visit now with virtual tours, videos, and beautiful images. I hope to go and visit them again after we are released from our ‘ stay at home’ orders. For now I have the trees around my house that provide shade and shelter for the birds and squirrels. Here in my part of Southern California there are a lot of Oak trees.  They are protected here and dot the landscape throughout this area and other parts of California.

Drive through Oaks, Hope Ranch, Santa Barbara, California via New York Public Library

Redwood National and State Parks in located in the northernmost coast of California and approximately 50 miles long from Crescent City to south of Oreck, California.

 

Maybe this ‘Stay at home’ time will inspire me to get out in the world much more than I have been in recent years. We’ve got to embrace life because, as this terrible crisis makes us so acutely aware, we can’t take life for granted.


What Day Is It Anyway? #WDIIA, is hosted by Linda G Hill

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2020

Featured image ‘Ancient Coast Redwoods tower above hikers at Simpson Reed Grove Trail’ courtesy of US National Park Service

 

Santa Monica Mountains National Park- Mountain Lions

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area is part of the US National Park system goes from mountains to the sea. The park is home to wildlife including mountain lions, coyotes, bobcats, quail, dolphins, and much more. There are many challenges to protecting wildlife surrounding our urban area in Southern California. The beautiful mountain lion in the above video, identified as P-56, had to be killed because he was attacking domestic livestock.

We have a Wildlife Bridge planned to help protect Mountain Lions as many have been killed trying to cross the freeways in Southern California.

Mountain lion kitten, p-6 via NPS

Santa Monica Mountain National Park Poppies and Lupine by NPS

Happy Earth Day! April 22, 2020

‘The Blue Marble: The View From Apollo 17’ Dec 7, 1972 via NASA


Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2020

Rivers Oceans Mountains Deserts and My Backyard

Below are some videos of California nature hosted by Professor Erika Zavaleta, UC Santa Cruz. In the first one she is discussing the Elkhorn Slough ( pronounced like slew, I used to think it was pronounced ‘sluff’).  I have driven by the slough in the past while on trips and did not realize there are sea otters hanging out there too. They are so great to watch.  In the second video she talks about all the different climates in California from West to East. Some beautiful scenery in these videos. The last one is a relaxing video ‘The gentle sound of a Mountain River and Spring Forest’ by TopRelaxMusic on You Tube.

 

 

 

I was out digging around in the backyard again yesterday and heard a Red-tailed hawk overhead and saw a smaller hawk (Cooper’s hawk?) flying above as well. I have been clearing away leaves and some wood sorrel which is a weed that is trying to take over where my woolly thyme should be growing. The African Fern Pines drop a ton of leaves and little round fruit. Some birds and bats may eat the fruit. The leaves do keep the soil moist but they really pile up pretty thick and block the thyme ground cover. I am getting into yard work more and it is physical exercise too. It gets me outside in nature and fresh air. We are still on ‘stay at home’ orders.

I really do like to stay at home a lot in recent years but this is different because of the threat of infection lurking.  It is terrible to know of all the people who are affected and those who have died. It still seems unreal all that has happened. I hope we can get back to normal soon.


What Day Is It Anyway? #WDIIA, is hosted by Linda G Hill

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge 2020

Night Will End

” Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.”-Victor Hugo

We can begin to see the glimmer of first light before the dawn. Some countries are beginning to let their people go back to work. We have not finished with this epidemic as yet in the US and people are still suffering from it. We are still having many deaths. But I have read the number of cases have started to decrease in many places around the country. So there is hope that we are seeing the beginning of the end.

My state of California is actively planning for the time when we will be able to end our quarantine.  It may not happen for a few months yet. Some states will not be ready at the same time if their infection rates are peaking later. But eventually we will all be ready. We are not sure here in California what this will look like at first. People will probably wear masks in public places and no large gatherings.

From LA Times 4/15/2020:

Easing California’s lockdown

The governor said the stay-at-home mandate can be altered only when the state is able to:
Closely monitor and track potential cases.
Prevent infection of high-risk people.
Prepare hospitals to handle surges.
Develop therapeutics to meet demand.
Ensure schools, businesses and child-care facilities can support social distancing.
Develop guidelines for when to ask Californians to stay home again, if necessary.

I find myself upset by the thought of this changed life and that we could be asked to stay home again. People don’t like change in general and we have been going through major change. I don’t want fear to be in control of my life, however. I must find a way to live with all that may be coming and be able to find peace in my life each day.

While saying this I remember that there are people who had to continue to work during the epidemic and provide critical and essentially needed services to us all. They had to face the risk of infection every day. All the health workers, pharmacy, police, firefighters, truck drivers, grocery, delivery, and trash removal. Los Angeles County has created regulations to protect grocery workers and grocery delivery workers.  Masks, gloves, and hand sanitizers must be provided to delivery workers. I counted on the delivery workers to bring my groceries for the past couple of weeks. I always thanked them and gave them a tip. Los Angeles County and my local city has provided assistance to those who need help with grocery and pharmacy pick up and delivery.

We will have to look back at all that happened and continue to grieve as well. We have to look how we handled the epidemic and be sure to learn from it.

NPR interview with David Kessler, a grief expert, on the grief associated with Coronavirus pandemic:


What Day Is It Anyway? #WDIIA, is hosted by Linda G Hill.

Blogging for A to Z April Challenge 2020

Featured image ‘Dawn in Joshua Tree, California’ by Jessie Eastland on Wikimedia.org

 

Missing People

Yosemite without people has more animal visitors.

A mini-tour via National Geographic on You Tube:

A longer video for some quiet meditation by Milosh Ktchovitch ‘Amazing Places on Our Planet’ on You Tube:

 


What Day Is It Anyway?, #WDIIA is hosted by Linda G Hill.

Blogging from A to Z april Challenge 2020