On November 21, 1858 the Old Adobe Church in Old Town San Diego was dedicated by Father Molinier with the new name, Church of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mass is celebrated daily.
December 31, 2008
December 29, 2008
It was a typical cloudless sunset here in San Diego. It was 60 degrees at sunset going down to a low of 48 degrees tonight. The recent period of rain and clouds seems to have passed. The seasons are marked in our canyon by how far north or south the sun sets. The sun has started the journey back to the south as we emerge from winter. This view is from my back patio looking across our canyon. The Pacific ocean is just over that ridge. I used my new Canon SD990IS; love it already.
One of the primate exhibits at the zoo has a small pond filled with fish.
December 28, 2008
Coastal Sage is a cultural center to learn about how to take care of the earth. They can help you with garden design and the maintenance of your garden as well. They carry a selection of organic garden supplies.
December 27, 2008
Our Hotel del Coronado is a National Historic Landmark with 120 years of Christmas celebrations. Both inside and out the hotel dresses up nice. It is a treasure we love here in San Diego.
December 26, 2008
With the huge sales leading up to Christmas it is little surprise that even bigger and better sales are available the day after Christmas. Mrs. Clause (my wife) is busy checking something out while I sit down and relax at the Z Gallery.
December 25, 2008
Christmas tamales are a traditional food from my childhood growing up in a rich TexMex culture. Preparing the tamales pulled together many of the families in my community for a special holiday event. My family enjoyed serving tamales right along side our traditional turkey, dressing, green bean casserole, candied yams, cranberries and pecan pie.
If you don’t make your own tamales the best place in San Diego to get them is Ancira. They make delicious tamales. Merry Christmas!
December 24, 2008
Lots of kids like to cover all bases and go talk with Santa himself this time of year. Our time in San Diego for interviews has been going on for a few days down at Fashion Valley Mall. Some kids dress up and have their pictures taken to honor the old guy and as a memory for the visit. Today there was a good size line waiting to see Santa. I expect more kids than usual were feeling the need to talk direct with the financial crisis and all. Ho, Ho, Ho and Merry Christmas to all.
December 23, 2008
San Diego is such a big urban city I sometimes forget about all things rural. Once a year I revisit those memories by going to the Del Mar Fair and watching the kids with their animals. Sheep shearing is pretty tricky and certainly a family affair. The 2009 edition starts June 12, 2009.
December 22, 2008
The space age has moved from Sputnik in 1957 to China’s first walk this September 2008. Is America finished with space? We have been distracted for over a decade. And the financial crisis is a very deep hole. Can we move forward? Will we?
I took this picture, coffee in one hand, camera in the other, walking from the parking lot to my office. The structure you see helps move “things” many of which will be sent into space.
December 21, 2008
Check out the fancy foot action used by this expert sign flipper. Simply amazing. San Diego is all about cars and driving. We appreciate the companies that reach out to us in this way and provide some entertainment at the same time. And it gives the sign flippers some great exercise.
December 20, 2008
Christmas is an especially difficult time for some people. Two years ago I was in the hospital. It meant so much to have visitors. This year I want to give-back by reaching out to someone in need. Many churches have a “prayer quilt” ministry that reaches out to those in need throughout the year. My daughter (on left) serves at Foothills UMC. They have a very active prayer quilt ministry.
December 19, 2008
The peacocks that live just inside the zoo entrance are very proud of their beauty. They love to make visitors welcome and show everyone just how pretty they really are. Some people like them so much they have some of their own.
December 18, 2008
The three jewels in the San Diego park system are Balboa, Mission Bay and this one, Mission Trails Regional Park. It covers 5,800 acres of rugged hills, valleys and open areas and is located only eight miles northeast of downtown San Diego. Even better it is just two blocks from my house.
This picture shows a view looking east into Mission Gorge from the visitors parking area. The little valley holds the original dam built by the Kumeyaay to supply water to Mission San Diego de Alcala. The trail from the visitors center to the dam is walker friendly and a great place to relax from our urban pace.
One of San Diego’s top restaurants is conveniently located right in the middle of Balboa Park. Prado Restaurant is just off the main hub inside this courtyard. It offers a welcome break, great service and delicious food.
December 17, 2008
Georgia O’Keeffe said “Most people in the city rush around so, they have no time to look at a flower.” She painted Red Canna in the early twenties to help people see them “whether they want to or not.” My daughter took this picture in Balboa Park when we all went to see the Georgia OKeeffe exhibit at the San Diego Museum of Art.
December 16, 2008
A giraffe’s tongue is 18 to 20 inches long, blue black in color. We could not help ourselves when we saw this cute giraffe at the Wild Animal Park. My wife and I asked one of the helpful staff zoo keepers to take our picture. We were really having a good time as you can see from the smiles. Both the Zoo and Wild Animal Park offer visitors an opportunity to feed the giraffe. And be warned that real giraffes have a sticky saliva that coats their tongues.
December 15, 2008
My wife and I wear our pedometers when visiting either the Zoo or Wild Animal Park. But the Zoo has some pretty steep canyons and riding the escalator back up to the top usually provides a needed break. We make up the missed steps on level ground. 🙂
The zoo escalators are pretty long but no where near a record. The longest single-span uninterrupted escalator in the Western Hemisphere is at the Wheaton station of the Washington Metro system (230 feet long, 2 min 45 sec ride time). I have actually taken the third longest ride, the one at Rosslyn station (205 ft 8 in).
December 14, 2008
Gorillas fascinate visitors and seem to enjoy people watching as much as we enjoy watching them. Gorillas are the largest of all primates and like many humans are family-oriented, vegetarian and peaceful. Unlike humans they like to walk using their hands as well as their feet. Check it out next time you visit.
December 13, 2008
A caravan tour can take you up close and personal with the animals at the park. There are many choices including photography, snapshot, family, nigh moves and early riser caravans.
December 12, 2008
More than 3 million people each year visit the San Diego Zoo to see the 4,000 animals of 800 species that call the zoo home. In fact, it is such a nice place some of our local ducks live at the zoo. The mother duck pictured here has an amazing 20 chicks in tow. She is carefully moving her family through the cafe between Elephant Mesa and the Koala Exhibit. Check out all the birds at the zoo.
December 11, 2008
San Diego had perfect weather to see the closest approach of the moon this year. It rose over the Del Cerro hills flooding the canyons with bright reflections of the season. As the moon rises it appears even larger than it will later in the night when it’s higher in the sky. With this closest approach we could see this years largest moon appearance, an illusion but beautiful. My home, third from right, sits on the rim of this canyon. Driving home from work I saw this scene and could not pass up an opportunity to take a picture similar to “Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico 1941” by Ansel Adams.
Brush fires are a constant danger in San Diego. I took this picture from the highest point inside the Wild Animal Park looking towards the southeast. The picture looks like a lovely sunset or sunrise. But that bright spot over the hill is a fast moving fire. The danger was very real with the smoke rolling up into the sky and turning day into night.
December 10, 2008
The San Diego Zoo also includes a full animal hospital. This picture shows a blue crowned pigeon being prepared for a digital xray.
The host for my visit to the San Diego Zoo Hospital was Senior Veterinarian Dr. Meg Sutherland-Smith seen on the right in this picture. My inside look was very special because zoo visitors, members and staff are almost never allowed inside.
Read more about my visit and see more pictures at this link.
December 9, 2008
A visit to Horton Plaza during the holiday weekends will provide you an oppotunity to hear the Full Measure Christmas Carolers. Check out the Shopping Concierge Center, available from 11am until 7pm, located on Level 1 near Victoria’s Secret. See them for all your needs, including Westfield and American Express Gift Cards, Kiddie Kruzzers, gift suggestions, tourism information, complimentary wheelchairs and more. Call them at 619-239-8180 to get the schedule for the Full Measure Carolers.