Monday, May 31, 2010

Monday Meme - Disneymania

This is my first Meme. Stolen from An Erie Tapestry. 

1. Which non-Disney Princess Disney Film is your favorite?
Lady and the Tramp

2. Which Disney film makes you cry the most?

3. Which Disney film makes you the happiest?

4. Which Disney film has the best music?

5. Which Disney film has the best love story? 
Mary Poppins. Yes it is a love story.

6. Who is your favorite Disney Princess?

7. Who is your favorite Disney Prince?
Prince Philip (Sleeping Beauty)

8. Who is your favorite Disney animal sidekick?

9. Who is your favorite Disney main character animal?
Pongo (101 Dalmatians)

10. Who is your favorite villain?
Queen of Hearts

11. What is your favorite Disney song?
A Dream is a Wish your Heart Makes

12. What is your favorite Disney villain song?
Poor Unfortunate Souls (Little Mermaid)

13. What is your favorite Disney animal song? 
Appreciate the Lady (Fox and the Hound)

14. What is your favorite Disney Princess song?
Sing, Sweet Nightingale (Cinderella)

15. What is your favorite Disney Prince song?
One Jump Ahead (Aladdin)

16. What is your favorite Disney Prince/Princess duet song?
Something there that wasn't there before (Beauty and the Beast)

17. What is your favorite Disney love song?
Kiss the Girl (Little Mermaid)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Better late than never

I promised nearly three weeks ago a post about my thoughts on the "scandalous"  Miss USA photos; even though it is old news now I still feel it necessary to voice my opinion. Having pageant experience myself I am entitled to speak on the issue.

You can view the girls here

I don't have a problem with the photos. (ok you can pick your jaw up off the floor now.) In my not so humble opinion these photos are exactly what the Miss USA program is all about and I think Trump finally got it right. The type of girls Miss USA attracts are not looking to be the next president of the UN or Nobel prize winner. These girls want to be models, and they should be, they are gorgeous. The photos that were taken will certainly help their modeling careers, not to mention the television ratings for Miss USA. Although I do find it truly interesting that the highest rated photo is Miss Indiana, who is "fully" (i use the term loosely) clothed.

I just think it is important that you understand the difference between the values of the Miss USA program and those of Miss America. They are two different organizations with different ideals. You would never ever catch a Miss America girl taking those kinds of photos. They are too sweet and innocent to even know about sex! And they certainly don't own any lingerie. 

In the interest of full disclosure I have never competed with the Miss USA program, however I have competed in the Miss America system. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

Have you seen this Sen-serter?

Missing since 05/27/2010
Non-repro blue, approx 6 inches long
last seen in Mrs. Harer's purse
Will offer reward for it's safe return

I seem to have a knack for losing diabetes care supplies. I've lost innumerable sof-serters. Last year after we returned from our annual trip to Yosemite I thought I lost the charger for my CGMS transmitter. I ended up buying a new one, just in time to find the old one, and that puppy wasn't cheap. I purposely bought 2 extra sen-serters because I knew they would get lost and now all 3 sen-serters I own are missing. I simply cannot put a new glucose sensor in without it. I would love to say that I am not scatterbrained with my diabetes supplies, but that would not be truthful. 

The truth is I put/leave my "stuff" whenever it is that I happen to be using it at the time, and simply hope it is still there when I need it again. Ugh I should really be more organized/careful with this stuff, seeing how my life depends on it. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Dog Blog Day!

It's Wednesday and that means it's time to blog about your dog.

Sheila is our baby. She is a boston terror/pug mix. Sheila loves to play with her toys, she knows how to retrieve them from her toybox. Just like a baby, Sheila soothes herself by chewing/sucking on her toys as if they were a pacifier. She also knows how to play dead, shake and give  kisses.

Sheila will be three years old in September.  Since Sheila is going to be a "big girl" this year, she is going to have a big birthday party at the dog park. Hopefully the new Redlands Dog Park will be open by then.

We are thinking of having Sheila's portrait commissioned by Boston Terrier artist Brian Rubenacker.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Bookworm, Bookworm

Other than Farmville, the tried and tested way to keep me quiet and entertained for hours is to give me a book. I'll read just about anything. I've been reading all the Wizard of Oz series, which I downloaded for free on the Iphone Stanza app. I know these are children's books, but they are well written and very imaginative. I have rather enjoyed reading them. Did you know there are 14 Oz books written by L. Frank Baum and countless others by various authors?

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
The Marvelous Land of Oz
Ozma of Oz
Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz
The Road to Oz
The Emerald City of Oz
The Patchwork Girl of Oz
Tik-Tok of Oz
The Scarecrow of Oz
Rinkitink of Oz
The Lost Princess of Oz
The Tin Woodman of Oz
The Magic of Oz
Glinda of Oz

I read up to The Patchwork Girl of Oz and have decided to put the series aside in favor of reading the Anne of Green Gables Series. I know, I know another children's series, but seriously well written and highly entertaining. Did you know there are 8 books, plus an unfinished 9th book, that was published last year. 
Anne of Green Gables
Anne of Avonlea
Anne of the Island
Anne of Windy Poplars
Anne's House of Dreams
Anne of Ingleside
Rainbow Valley
Rilla of Ingleside
The Blythes are Quoted

In case you are worried, I have been reading some grown up books lately. I just finished Nora Roberts "Savour the Moment" which is part of her Bride Quartet series.

Vision in White
Bed of Roses
Savour the Moment
Happily Ever After (to be released Nov. 2010)

I've been enjoying the Southern Vampire Mysteries, although I was really disappointed with the most recent book. 
Dead Until Dark
Living Dead in Dallas
Club Dead
Dead to the World
Dead as a Doornail
Definitely Dead
All Together Dead
From Dead to Worse
Dead and Gone
A Touch of Dead
Dead in the Family

Lastly I've recently finished re-reading (for the millionth time) Wuthering Heights, which is my all-time most favorite book. 

So now you know. 

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Mid-day Rant

House cleaning makes me low and I don't want orange juice, I think we are out of glucose tabs, and if I eat anymore cherries I may puke. Must have real food, good ol' graham crackers and peanut butter, but we have no graham crackers. Ahhh, I feel a melt down coming on, it's a good thing I am home alone. or mostly alone, the dogs are here. Sheila, please don't lick the sweat off my face, it really irritates me. Gotta go eat. That means get up and go into the kitchen, now. Move. 

update ~ crisis averted, I found blackberry sorbet in the freezer. and after I cracked all the ice off the container (because I didn't want to get my hands wet) I was able to happily bring my blood sugar up. 
(image from The Hungry Mouse )

Friday, May 21, 2010

You are what you listen to

I do not listen to popular radio. I am fully aware of and can recognize current music, since it is everywhere; television, inside retail stores, on the internet etc. But, I choose to listen to christian music stations. It is a choice I made shortly after I graduated from high school.

As a 'tween and a teen, I didn't have a problem with "bad words", they just weren't a part of my vocabulary .  It wasn't until that transition stage between high school and college that those words creeped into my mouth. I began to notice that the music I was listening to was influencing my word choices, in addition to manipulating my emotions and behavior. I often felt stressed, angry or simply out of control. Please don't misunderstand me, I am not blaming the problems of youth on the music industry. For me the music was a slippery slope leading me to become a person I didn't want to be.

So I chose not to listen to it anymore. I found several local christian stations and have been listening ever since. I don't except anyone to agree or make the same decision and I don't feel awkward when people ask what kind of music I like, although I will admit I did at first. Music is like food, it nourishes the body and soul, I don't want to fill myself with nasty lyrics and innuendos. It is plain and simple. I like my music and frankly I don't care what your opinion is.

Judie's Current Playlist

  • More Beautiful You - Jonny Diaz 
  • Our Time - Group 1 Crew
  • Free to Be Me - Francesca Battistelli
  • Funky Jesus Music - TobyMac
  • Here With Me - Plumb
  • Avalanche - Manafest
  • Born Again - Newsboys
  • Lead Me - Sanctus Real
  • Hanging on by a Thread - The Letter Black
  • Let It Roll - Superchick

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Market Night - A shopping list

  • Cucumbers 
  • Butter Lettuce (I love that it has butter in the name)
  • Broccoli
  • Cherries
  • Strawberries
  • Garlic Fries (ok not exactly produce, but I can't pass em up)

Market night is every Thursday night. Local farms and orchards display their produce along State Street. Of course there are other types of vendors and lots of "carnival" food options.

But the last few weeks I've been obsessed with this new organic produce place. Their display is so attractive and when you walk by it smells so yummy. Last week they had cucumbers out as samples, this week they had cabbage available to sample. I love how they display their heirloom lettuce in those plastic kiddie pools. They seem to only offer vegetables, but that is fine because we have another vendor we like to get cherries from, and another guy we get strawberries from and we buy our oranges from the orchard with the vintage truck! 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Mr. Harer Says;

Blog about your dog! I now declare Wednesday as Dog Blog Day! 

Roxy is our oldest. She is a border collie of sorts and if you ask her she is the alpha of the pack. Roxy doesn't like to bathe, being brushed or grooming rituals in general, she also doesn't like human feet. At times she is very sweet, but mostly Roxy spend her time licking herself and sleeping. 

Roxy's nicknames: Roxdilla, Dill, Dill Pickle, Dilly. Grandpa Lansdell called her Roxy Annie and it kind of stuck, so that is what her collar reads. 

Roxy likes to occasionally run away, she believes it is good exercise (for her humans.) She loves car rides and considers it a job well done when her little adventures in running away conclude with a car ride home. Fortunately Roxy has never gotten truly lost or been picked up by the pound.

Roxy sheds a lot, since she had white fur people often ask if I have a cat. Her fur covers everything and it impossible to remove. In 100 years people will still likely be finding Roxy fur in my belongings. 

She can be quite vocal and her bark sounds like she is saying "row". She tells us when she wants to be let outside of her doggie containment area, also when she is hungry and when we are doing something she doesn't approve of. 

Roxy is excited to be the first feature on Dog Blog Wednesday and wants to know when she will get to guest post. 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Review of Our Visit to Club 33

You know how they say that things are a once in a lifetime experience? Well visiting Club 33 was not one of those times, I could not be satisfied if I never get to visit again!
When we walked into New Orleans Square, it was actually easy to locate the Club since we knew exactly what we were looking for (and had a map.) It was a little disappointing to find several large groups waiting outside the Club, it seemed hmm, a little less inconspicuous with all those people dressed to the nines hanging out there.

Mr. Harer used the famous brass speaker to inform them we had arrived. We rode the french lift upstairs to the main dining room. Our waiter was Patrick. We ordered the fixed Vintner's Menu, which was five courses. The chef had prepared a complimentary mushroom truffle appetizer. I don't like mushrooms, but it was so tiny and dipped in balsamic vinaigrette, it tasted good. The first course was salad. It was a yummy baby spinach with little potatoes and bacon.

Next was the fish course. It was a white fish (possible mahi?) over sweet potato with diced fruit salsa. Then came the entree. Of course it was steak, medium rare. I was starting to get full, at that point, but didn't want to let the waiter take my left over steak away. He kindly put it into a togo container (so classy Judie!)

The cheese course was the fourth course. I have bad experiences with cheese before and I do not like goat cheese, but they did not include an goat cheese. In fact they selected a Brie and a Bleu cheese served with balsamic vinaigrette, marmalade, and a cucumber infused cabbage.

Dessert was an apple lady finger, with a tiny little cup of ice cream. After dinner we indulged in a few purchases from the souvenir case. Mr. Harer chose a Club 33 lapel pin and I got Club 33 mouse ears, which we had embroidered with my name.

Yes I did take an extra guest towel from the restroom to keep as a souvenir and we received the traditional Club 33 matchbook (which is filled with note paper) and a Club 33 pen.

I managed to keep a nice even blood sugar throughout the evening. Overall it was an amazing experience! We enjoyed it very much, thank you again to Chance (and his parents) for the invite.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Swimming in School

I feel like I am in the deep end of the pool, I can see the edge. I stretch out my arm and reach my fingertips towards the end, almost there. Then splash it's gone and I am further away than I could possibly imagine.

I just want to finish these pre-reqs and get into nursing school, RCC does it have to be this difficult? 

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I Still Have Hope

First I need to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my wonderful husband. We are going to Club 33 at Disneyland, thanks to a good friend who has a membership.

Second I want to thank Karen for organizing this Diabetes Blog Week. I suggest it become an annual thing.

Okay now on to the topic at hand. What will life be like when there is a cure. (It makes me teary just thinking about it) Like I mentioned yesterday I've had diabetes a long time. I was three years old when I was diagnosed, so I don't remember much of life before, other than being really really sick.

I have seen every single article in the last two plus decade that claims "potential diabetes cure" only to watch it fizzle away. But that does not discourage me. I still hold onto hope that there is a cure in my future.

There are a few highlights I look forward to when Diabetes is eradicated;
  • I will never have to explain my food choices to anyone again
  • No one will stare at the gadgets on my body 
  • or ask me about my "pager"
  • No one will ever tell me about how their best friends great uncle died because he didn't take care of his diabetes. 
  • No more little kids will be diagnosed and have to spend years waiting and hoping for a cure. 
So to researchers everywhere, please don't disappoint me. 
To my friends and family (and the world as a whole) please support JDRF

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Today was supposed to be a Diabetes Snapshot day, and I began the day with the best of intentions to document in photo my diabetes. But alas, the day got away from me and I only snapped 1 photo. Blah.

So I am going to take advantage of the wildcard topic option.
"Wild card - Blood Sugar Nirvana or Moronic Moment.  (inspired by the lovely Kelly Kunik) Blog about the time you ate a meal that tends to spike you to the moon, but your perfectly calculated and timed bolus kept your blood sugar happy. Or tell us about that time your brain had a little diabetes-blip and you did something you think is “stupid”. (Because chances are, we’ve done it too!!) Go ahead, brag about your triumph or commiserate about your d-blooper. "

Low stories make the funniest bloopers and I have had some good ones! If you were to interview any of my numerous family members I am sure they would all have a wonderfully funny Judie low moment to share. Here are a few of the best ones.

Tea Party - Gerry and I had just begun dating and he was photographing a high school baseball game. I told him I needed to eat, but he didn't seem to get the urgency. Ultimately I convinced him to hand over the car keys, so I could go get a snack. I disappeared for hours. The game was long over by the time I returned. Gerry asked where I had been and I replied, "having a tea party with all my friends from kindergarten." I was still low too. No one knows where I really went.   

The Fit in the Cruise Ship Dining Room - The Lansdell family was on our annual vacation. It was one of the few times my cousins Jess and Justin actually got to come along. It was the last day of a lovely cruise, for anyone who has been on a cruise, you know it is a lot of hurry up and wait. My grandparents are pretty fussy about meal times while on vacation, but somehow that morning breakfast kept getting put off. This was when I was still on MDI (multiple daily injections) so postponing a meal was dicey. In the middle of the dining room, I throw a full on toddler style tantrum. No one seems to recall what set the tantrum off, but it escalated to the point of several servers holding me down, while my grandmother force fed me orange juice, with approx. 2500 other passengers staring at us. 

Finally, I wanted to share although it is not a low story, today while browsing some of the fantastic posts by my fellow d-bloggers, I realized this will be my 25th year with diabetes. Wow! I hadn't really thought about it before, like I know and say all the time that I have had diabetes for 24 years, but it didn't sink in that 25 years came next. I think I deserve a big party. 

Friday, May 14, 2010

Gym and I are not friends

Diabetes Blog Week day 5.  105 diabetics (and those who love us) share our views on exercise.

I do not like the Gym. I have free membership to the Drayson Center through my job, but rarely ever go. Partially because of my schedule (40hrs work and school 2 days a week) and partially because I am lazy. That being said, I do get some exercise. I walk from X-Lot everyday that I work at the Medical Center. It is almost a mile from X-Lot to the main hospital building. I take the stairs whenever I go up to the APN office on the 6th floor, although I usually have to hide out in the corner to catch my breath before I go into the office. Gerry and I try to take a bike ride once a week. We like to ride at Lake Perris
and along the SART trail. We also have a treadmill at home which I use sporadically.

I don't have any specific plan for managing my insulin and food to avoid bottoming out during my workouts. Typically my blood sugar drops about 70 "points" during a 1 hour bike ride. Since I wear a CGMS, I can see when I am dropping and treat accordingly. If I am working out with Gerry we use shot bloks to bring up my sugars. I especially like the margarita flavored ones. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Be Happy, Eat Carbs

When it comes to my Diabetic Diet philosophy, I am going to agree with Socrates, "everything in moderation."
I like carbs, oh boy! do I like carbs; pasta, pizza, rice, pasta, bread, did I mention pasta? I figure as long as I know how the so called "evil" carb is going to affect my blood sugar numbers and I bolus appropriately then it is okay to eat. 

Yes, I understand bolusing it not an exact science and there will be times that a bolus that has worked 100 times before isn't going to work and i'll end up soaring in the 300's.  It is okay, one high blood sugar is not going to kill me! In fact a few high blood sugars now and then aren't going to kill me. 

In fact I think it is okay for a type 1 to eat whatever they want, like a non-diabetic person would, as long as they know the correct amount to bolus. Now please don't misunderstand me and think that I am condoning bad dietary habits. It is important to eat from all food groups. I like vegetables, I like fruit. I am not so keen on milk, but I get my dairy servings. The food pyramid is a good thing, follow it, it won't lead you astray. 

The bottom line is, I am not going to allow diabetes to define what I can and cannot eat. 

Stepping off my soapbox now. 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Stand by me

Day 3 of Diabetes Blog Week, lets talk about who supports my habit, oh wait I mean who hangs around to encourage me, cheer me on, and help me when I need it. 

Well this one is obvious. It's Bunny! 
Ok, it is really Bunny and Gerry.
Bunny was there for the early years. I told Bunny's history previously, so I won't rehash it. Although I cannot remember Bunny ever fetching juice or glucose tabs at 1am, he took great care of me in his own special way. On the other hand Gerry is a pro at fetching juice at 1 am, testing my blood sugar while I sleep and putting up with out of range blood sugars. 

He took to diabetes like a fish to water. I don't remember ever explaining to him, what his role in my diabetes care would be, but somehow he just knew. He does a great job, and inspires me to try harder at taking care of myself. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Go away low and don't come back!

It is day 2 of Diabetes Blog Week organized by Karen. Today all of us are sharing our favorite way to treat low blood sugars.

These yummy japanese fruit chews are my favorite way to treat a low. Each package contains 10 individually wrapped candies. Each piece is 4g of carbs (just like a Glucose Tab). Usually I end up eating the whole pack, because they are so yummy. My favorite flavor is Melon, but I also really like the Green Apple ones, oh and I like the Strawberry and the Mango is good too. The Banana flavor is new, our World Market doesn't carry them yet.....

My second favorite way to treat a low is ...
Naked Orange juice is the only orange juice that I like. When I was still working at Macy's and having trouble with lows, I was drinking 2 bottles almost every day. I think it helped lower my cholesterol too.

So, that is how I like to treat my low blood sugars. Tomorrow let's talk about who helps me most with my diabetes care. Betcha can't guess!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Daily Life.... with the 'betes

Karen over at Bitter-Sweet Diabetes has organized this Diabetes Blog week and today we (all 95 of us) are blogging about an average day and all the ways in which diabetes touches it. As anyone who has diabetes (or those who live with us) knows, nothing about our days is ever average or typical. Each day brings new challenges and successes. With that in mind, I am going to follow the example of many of my peers and post a log of today.

5:28A ~ Alarm goes off. I throw my arm over my head and vow to get up in 15 minutes.

5:42A ~ Get up and get dressed for school. Speech is due today. Put on make-up and curl my hair.

6:15A ~ Finalize my speaking outline and notecards. 

6:30A ~ Leave for school.

7:01A ~ Take my seat in class and test my blood sugar, 305, WTF? Oh yeah I had pasta last night. Okay dial up 5.9 units on the pump, and skip the cupcakes being passed around the room. :-(

7:50A ~ Give my speech, it was a success. Test again to be sure I didn't have an adrenaline spike. 229. Good it is coming down.

8:50A ~ Pull through Starbucks, I need a treat for doing so well on my speech, (and for passing on the cupcake.)

9:30A ~ Work

10:40A ~ Input new glucose sensor on my hip. No bleeding, but it hurts like someone is shoving a toothpick in my hip muscle. 

12:20P ~ We are celebrating a coworker's birthday, picnic lunch. 87 blood sugar, woo hoo that came down nicely. I give in to the cupcakes.

2:20P ~ 93 post prandial, yay!

Afternoon ~ Watch on the sensor as my blood sugar coasts up to 160 and decides to stay there.

3:30P ~ Take the stairs up to the 6th floor APN office to pick up office supplies. Treat myself to a cookie.

7:04P ~ Sensor beeping, time to calibrate. 187, correct with 1.1u and plan for dinner. We will be having truckey (turkey, Nina style) burgers.

I do not dare try to foreshadow how the rest of the evening will go blood sugar wise, because I will jinx myself.

Look out for a new diabetes post tomorrow about how I like to treat a low. 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Lusting after summer

I am in an outdoors kind of mood. I don't know if it our upcoming trip to Yosemite, or just because the weather has been so nice, but I just want to run through the sprinklers.
I was walking through the seasonal toy aisles in Target and I was trying to find any excuse to buy summer toys; the Slip N Slide, big buckets of bubbles, water guns, kites, those wacky sprinkler things.

Have you seen these?

I definitely want to get some water guns for our trip to Yosemite. Remember Super Soakers? Or maybe we should get a bunch of water balloons? 

What are your favorite summer toys/games?

Friday, May 7, 2010

A good night for watching movies

Gerry and I are enjoying a night in watching old movies on Netflix. We watched Calamity Jane, starring Doris Day. 

(images from

Now we are watching Father Goose, starring Cary Grant, which incidentally was his last film. 

(images from

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Shopping is cheaper than a psychiatrist

I did a little retail therapy last week. I ordered a few things from New York and Company on sale. They arrived yesterday. I am wearing some of them today.
These are the things I bought.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

A fool gives full vent to [her] anger, but a wise [woman] keeps [herself] under control

Proverbs 29:11.

Why is it so hard to listen when someone tells you that you've done wrong? It is so easy to react in a moment of frustration and say something you wouldn't normally ever think let alone say.

I like to think of my mistakes as teachable moments, chalk this week up to lessons learned, thankfully, not the hard way.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Kindle, you disappoint me.

For the last three or four months, I've enjoyed using the Kindle on my Iphone. I have read and re-read my copy of the Southern Vampire Mysteries, and I was so excited that today, after months of waiting, the new SVM book Dead in the Family was released. First thing this morning I opened up my Kindle app and clicked the Get Books button, only to be denied access to the one thing I wanted most.

I was about to admit defeat and go to Barnes and Noble to purchase the book. On the off chance that it might be available in the Apple IBookstore thing, I snuck back into the bedroom to pry the IPad from Gerry's sleeping fingers. Sure enough there the book was on front and center on the Apple IBookstore thing. I purchased it and proceeded to do the Judie Happy Dance.

I am so disappointed with Kindle, I vow to now only use the Apple IBookstore thing to purchase my ebooks.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Urban Dictionary

Have you ever used it? Honestly I had never even heard of it until someone posted on Facebook about it. Apparently it is trendy to look up your name on
Urban Dictionary.

So in the spirit of jumping on the bandwagon, according to Urban Dictionary;

Judie is a woman that normally likes to spend her time with her mother talking about food or doing puzzles.

Judith is a girl next door type with a pleasant sense of humor, often passed over by foolish men despite her many often reserved, yet highly desirable qualities.

Judith is also a woman to be reckoned with.

The origins of the name Judith is Hebrew; it means "Praised." Daring and beautiful. Courted by many.

Actually looking up my name was kind of fun, you should try it also, feel free to post your findings in the comments. 

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sometimes Thou may'st [drive] in Groves

Earlier this semester I was given an assignment to write a descriptive, argumentative essay about a tree that has had an impact on my life. I did not do well on the assignment, however it has caused me to pause, look up and consider the trees I encounter daily.

I am fortunate to live in a town with many mature trees. Part of what makes my morning drive to work so enjoyable is in fact the trees. I would like to share them with you.

This tree begins my day. It is part of the reason I love my house so much. The base of the tree is gnarled and looks old, during spring it is covered in moss. I image fairies or gnomes may live at the base of this tree. Among the top branches is the home to some very noisy birds. I cannot see them, but I definitely hear their song.  When the wind blows, as it so often does in Redlands, the clusters of pine needles fall onto our roof and into our yard.

Lining the fence of Kingsbury Elementary school is an unique cohabitation of Palm Trees and Pine Trees. Both fighting for bragging rights as the tallest of the tall. The children seem mere elves when standing in the shade they generously offer. I love these trees because they symbolize California so perfectly; two climates mingled perfectly together. 

When I was small, we had an eucalyptus tree  in our backyard. Carrie and I would pretend we were kangaroos or that koalas lived in the trees above our heads. I pass by these eucalyptus trees and reminisce about those childhood games. 

It is not this tree that is so noteworthy, but the structure encapsulated within it. I've promised myself, someday when I have children, I will (okay, Gerry will) build them a treehouse just like this one. 

The wind here can cause pretty bad damage to the trees despite their strength and age. This tree stands between the kennels for the large and medium dogs at Hulda Crooks Dog Park. Recently a branch broke off during a storm and deformed the fence. 

These are my favorite trees along my morning route. They are the only ones that lose their leaves with the change of the seasons. Since it is Spring right now, they have lovely green foliage filling them out and making the trees appear quite large. But as summer approaches the leaves will turn brown, and look like most southwestern shrubs. In winters they are completely devoid of leaves and become simply a trunk with spindly branches, allowing passersby to glimpse into the empty field behind. I would like to take a photo of these trees everyday to document their changing appearance, because it fascinates me. 

Of course my day is not complete with passing through the Redlands orange groves. Spring is the best time of year, since the orange trees are blossoming. I drive along Beaumont Ave with the windows down to enjoy the sweet scent of the blossoms. Monarch butterflies flock to this beautiful locale, there are thousands of them. During early May a drive through this area is what I image a garden in Heaven might be like. It should be easy to understand now, why I don't take the freeway to work and instead take time along the scenic route to look up and enjoy the landscape.