This has been such a busy and fun Christmas season visiting my amazing parents in Texas.
I’ve had so much fun with them that I’ve neglected taking photos. As I was outside running a couple errands though, the sunset colors of the big Texas sky caught my attention and I just had to stop.
As long as I had my camera and ditching my duties…I kept clicking…Walmart was selling leftover Christmas trees last week for 2 cents each so we got a baker’s dozen for fish habitat. If more would have fit in the truck, we would have gotten more. My brother wanted to know if we tried to talk them down in price. 😉 These will give those bass a reason to hang around.
Mom’s puttering around in the kitchen and Dad’s at the puzzle table.
And a beautiful full moon over the lake while steaks wait for the football game to end.
I went out at sunset in hopes to see the Supermoon rise over the Alsea Bay. The eastern sky was covered by clouds so I focused on the sunset.
The sun sets pretty far north in August. It still amazes me how much it changes from summer to winter. In the winter the sun will set at the mouth of the bay.
Here’s a view of the sleepy little town of Waldport from the archway on the Alsea Bridge.
The cormorants were resting on the underside of the bridge. You can tell by the white poop that they nest above this area. There were other cormorants hanging out but this one had something on his back that I wanted to get a closer look at. There were about 5 dead cormorants there too. I assume that’s common?
I didn’t want to give up on the moonrise too soon; in case it surprised me by popping through the clouds. So I crossed over to the east side of the bridge. No seals on the sandbar, just evidence of their haulout. But something caught my eye and I had to go investigate while I watched the sky change.
Waldport has a Green Bike program. This one looks like it has a twisted back tire but, otherwise, might be salvageable if someone can get out to the sandbar at low tide.
Time to call it a night. I’m sad the moon didn’t show up but happy to see the sunset with all its beautiful colors.
The Weekly Photo Challenge this week was Joy. I looked at other posts and saw faces of children, nature photos and descriptions of the joy that Christ brings. I wondered what photo I could post that would exemplify what is joy to me. I thought of the baby girl looking at her daddy with awe. Then I thought of the photo our son-in-law sent us when our daughter delivered their stillborn son. Mama was holding her child tighter than I’ve ever seen her hold anything; staring into his face as she wanted to memorize it forever. Their joy in their other children was certainly amplified from that experience. Heaven now holds more joy than we might have imagined it would.
It got me thinking about what joy really is. Dallin H. Oaks said, “Joy is more than happiness. Joy is the ultimate sensation of well-being.” I don’t know if that is an uncommon definition but I think a lot of Christians describe it that way because of the peace Christ brings when we focus on Him. Elder Oaks added, “The opposite of joy is misery.” Opposition helps me to appreciate the good in my life. Contrast certainly helps to define whatever it is that is opposite. I’m just glad that it doesn’t take much misery for me recognize joy.
I’ve said before, I’ve never appreciated the sun so much as I have after living in Oregon where I can go for weeks without seeing it. Even when it is not cloudy, a mountain (mostly) hides it from my home during the winter months. While that may not be pleasant, it is a far cry from true misery. I’m not saying I want to experience true misery so I can experience true joy. I’m satisfied with the trials I’ve had and I trust that I won’t be given anything I can’t handle.
We happened to be driving down Hwy 101 this evening just before sunset. So we (and about 30 other people) pulled into Yaquina Bay Lighthouse. In typical meerkat fashion, we lined the edge of the parking lot watching the colors change, wondering if we’d be rewarded with a green flash. Some silently watched alone, others were arm-in-arm with a loved one. Parents tried to help children hold their attention on the slow-moving sun. We were rewarded even though I didn’t capture the best of the green flash on camera.
But once the sun set, the real show began. Colors slowly changed from yellow, orange and blue to pink and purple and it lasted and lasted.
So there it was; a few moments of peace and tranquility. It lasted as long as I was still and watched and took it all in. And now I have the memory to reflect on and to contrast. “men are, that they might have joy.” (2 Ne. 2:25.) He created us to have joy! I think this is one area where balance is not required. It only takes a short burst of pain to help me appreciate feeling good for a long time.
We’ve had beautiful weather while in northern Utah. Don called my attention to the sunset the first night, well actually, as we were landing.
If we had driven across eastern Oregon and southern Idaho to get here it would have been snowing all the way. We decided to head out to Antelope Island for the sunset. There is not a whisp of wind tonight.
Our kids have us to thank for the great weather.
We barely got to the Visitor Center before the sun went down. Chukars greeted us with their chuckaring sounds and we saw about a dozen buffalo from the hill.
This photo is looking back across Davis County to the Weber Canyon in the Wasatch Mountains. Like much of the west, this year, northern Utah has seen little rain or snow yet. The mountains are bare of snow. We heard the fall colors were beautiful and all that’s left is a few patches of yellow.
It’s been a while since I’ve seen mountains on the other side of a body of water.
As I was photographing the chukar at sunset, I noticed a dark spot in the sky that wasn’t moving.
So I zoomed in and could see that it is a blimp! I didn’t know they still used those?
The sunset colors just kept getting more vibrant. We saw cotton-tailed bunnies, a coyote walk in front of a bison and even a couple antelope after dark; the whole Antelope Island food chain!
That was a successful trip to Antelope Island! We made the mistake (ONCE) of camping here in the spring when the brine flies were thick. BLECKkk! But this time of year would be fun and there are quite a few RV’s out here for Fall Break (or UEA weekend as we used to call it).
I have a funny memory of driving across the Antelope Island Causeway from when our oldest son was learning to drive. Don was out of town for a couple days and you know you can’t miss a day of practice at that age. So I took him out to Antelope Island. Not much traffic out there and I’d never been out with him before. He did good but I wasn’t ready to take it to the next level yet. When he asked to drive all the way home, I said “No, maybe the next time.” Or maybe I just said “No”? So, in order to lengthen his time behind the wheel, he slowed down to about 5 mph for the 4 mile trip across the causeway. It was adorable! You know, in the way that only a silent-stand of a teenager can be. hahaha