…have Bob and Ellen gone? The blog has been quiet, but we’ve been busy.
Over the winter we left Yuma for southern California and were mesmerized by how green the desert and hills looked after all the rain that had fallen in the months before.
It might not look like much, but that stretch of desert is usually a delicate shading of brown, tan, and beige. We passed several cars and trucks at pull-outs where people had come out to peep at the desert flowers.
Though full-time RVing means giving up chores like raking leaves and painting the house, we still have cleaning and waxing to do:
We plan our next travel routes, and Ellen squeezes in some writing (she’s putting the final touches on an e-book about full-time RVing… watch this space!).
Plus we acquaint ourselves with the neighbors, like this male California Quail, perched in a tree, which is something we hadn’t seen these local quail do before…
…or this Small Milkweed Bug creeping around a citrus bloom…
…and this House Finch…
…lizard (soaking in the sun)…
…another lizard (resting in the shade of a potted geranium)…
…or this California Thrasher, which sat on the top of this trellis or nearby
bushes and sang to us until he eventually got lucky 🙂
Unlike the thrashers, scrub jays and quail, this Black-Headed Grosbeak was an unusual visitor to the neighborhood (at least when I was watching), so I was glad to capture this image of it, listening to hear if its song was getting a response:
Sitting in the same spot for a couple of months meant finding ways to make things look new, and what better way to do that than experiment with the camera settings?
And just when we thought we’d met all the neighbors, we noticed this bird perched high in an evergreen tree… a Black-Crowned Night Heron! And it wasn’t too eager to stir from its nap for a better portrait:
What’s all that buzzing? Bees. Everywhere. So of course… I had to try, right?
But wait… this isn’t a bee! It’s a White-Lined Sphinx. Yep, a member of the moth family. Didn’t know a moth could be pretty, did you?
We were amazed one day to see about a hundred (yes, truly; I’d post the video if this site allowed it) baby California Quail hustling along the hillside behind our site. Here are a couple of them, waiting for the signal from an adult that it’s safe to make their mad dash:
See what you miss if you’re not paying attention? Here’s a Western Tiger Swallowtail butterfly, sipping a bit of nectar:
This Green Heron had lost the bright orange feet it had when I saw it a few weeks earlier (without my camera, of course), but it still struck a proud pose…
…as did this stunning turtle, catching a few quick winks in the sunshine:
Good thing it caught the rays it could… late June in Southern California turned very hot. Outside Temecula we were under a Heat Advisory for a couple of weeks, spending days inside with the air conditioning on while temperatures outside soared well over 100 degrees day after day — all the way up to 108!
What do do? Well, we went out as the sun set. And of course we ate great food. More on that next time!