A promise delayed: The WPA Rock Garden

I’m keeping my promise made in my post on May 24, It’s All Happening at the Zoo. Today I’m showing you images of flowers taken at the WPA Rock Garden in William Land Park across the road from the Sacramento Zoo.

What’s a rock garden? Wikipedia has a full history and description for you here. Our small WPA Rock Garden was built by the WPA in 1940. The WPA was an employment and infrastructure program created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1935 during the Great Depression. In 1988 Daisy Mah, a park employee, put her vision for the current garden into fruition. Its paths wind in, out and around, and is maintained by a group of volunteers.

We enjoy walking through the garden looking for small gems. Marlene was with me and is good at finding insects, but none were found that morning. But there were many beautiful floral delights. Here are some of them.

This was a great way to end a visit to the zoo. We’ll be back!

Rain, rain: Stay, stay

You know the old saying: Be careful what you ask for. Well, we asked for it: RAIN. And we’re getting it. I’m not complaining about the rain, but I am complaining about the cold, damp, fog that we’re getting along with it. We will have one day of partial sunshine this week. But not rain everyday it’s not sunny.

This is challenging for photographers. Our images end up flat. We recently went to Bodega Bay for three days, and, of course, it was foggy (which you expect in the morning at the coast) and overcast. We did manage to get out for a while during our two full days there.

Here’s day one. We went to a wharf in the tiny town of Bodega Bay. We did get some sun coming through the clouds. Some of the pictures just called for black and white editing.

After the wharf, we drove up a hill to look down on the bay. Again, taking advantage of some sunlight.

Clouds make for amazing sunsets.

In my next post you’ll see the beach and other sites. Till then, let it rain. Can it rain without a cloud cover? I didn’t think so.

What a museum: California Museum

Grab a cup of coffee or tea and relax because there a more than my normal pictures in this post. I was surprised and amazed at the amount of information and presentation at the California Museum. Two hours wasn’t really enough to absorb everything especially when you are photographing the exhibits.

Here’s the introduction to the place in the gift shop.

The visiting exhibit, Celebrate Women, was geared to women and young girls, helping them understand that they can aspire to be like many of the famous role models. Each exhibit had a view screen with more information. You can see how inviting the exhibits were. Because I was busy taking photos, I didn’t look at the exhibit screens and probably missed a lot. What we do for cool images! Writing this blog, I know I have to go back, without my camera.

The stairs offered us photographic opportunities too!

We will get back to the inside exhibits, but we did go outside to the back courtyard. I should say the beautiful back courtyard. One wall was artistically done with encouraging statements, and architecturally all the buildings surrounding it blended.

Various nationalities have left their impact in California. We know the Chinese and Mexicans certainly left their imprint in California. A lot of space was given to these nationalities showing and explaining their contributions to what California is today.

We’ve learned that the Chinese helped build the railroads and more. But, how about the food we enjoy today.

Mexicans brought their culture and holidays like Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead. Below are three-sided cards made by school children to honor the holiday. The painting struck me as amazingly detailed.

What I wasn’t prepared for was the Filipino influence on California history. It is described in this exhibit.

Of course, the entertainment industry had and has a big impact on California. Here are three showcases honoring the entertainers and the industry.

One hallway, honoring our Native American cultures, which I think was a permanent exhibit. Artifacts were behind glass and the hallway was dark. Meaning, difficult to photograph. I did get some pictures from the ceiling. The beautiful paintings ran the entire hallway.

We can’t forget about health. A considerable amount of space was dedicated to healthy eating.

Before we left, the last exhibit I saw honored the nurses who helped us through the darkest days of the Covid pandemic.

I’ll say it again, The California Museum was amazing. I will go back!

Macro Therapy: Green Acres Nursery

There are days when you just need some therapy–Macro Therapy. I’m fortunate there’s a Green Acres nursery, in Citrus Heights, about 10 minutes from my home. Recently in July was one of those mornings. I was feeling a little blah so I grabbed my macro lens and camera, and off I went.

Green Acres is great because they don’t mind us coming in with our cameras, taking our time and taking home picture memories of their products. Here are half of mine from that morning.

I still need to process the rest, so be on the lookout for more gorgeous flowers. Oh, macro therapy does help!

The heat is on: Sacramento History Museum

It’s either go out super early in the morning or go to a museum when it’s hot. In June we chose the museum–The Sacramento History Museum in Old Sacramento. As many times as I have been to Old Sacramento for various things, I never knew of this museum. I had my doubts as to whether it would be worthwhile. Was I surprised!

Not only did it give a great view of Sacramento’s history via pictures, text and artifacts, it was a photographer’s dream.

Just to give you a bit of the background, Sacramento was founded during the gold rush. You can read all about its history here. Being me I did all my photography before I started reading about my State Capitol’s history!

Here are some images of the lobby area.

The town’s newspaper, the Sacramento Bee. has a rich history in the area and is the newspaper I read daily. Of course, I now view it online. Here are exhibits dedicated to this newspaper.

As we were walking to our car, we saw a docent in period dress leading a tour and coming down to the museum. I thought this was a great museum to learn about Sacramento. It’s going to be a hot summer, so get ready for more museums!

Spring is here: My first roses

I don’t like to garden. However, I did inherit a small rose garden when we bought this house. I do like roses and somehow through their growing season, I get out there and trim them.

This post is short and sweet. Here are pictures of the first roses in my garden this year.

I also inherited a small iris garden which bloomed the first year we moved and nothing since–until now 4 years later. I’ve got two plants blooming. I’m wondering if the rest bloom whether I will get different colors like I saw at Horton’s Iris Garden last week.

I’ll be posting the pictures from Horton’s next week. So get ready for more beauty!

Lugging the long lens: Point Reyes National Seashore, part 2

I continue my Point Reyes adventure with Part 2. This area is not just about Tule Elk and Elephant Seals as shown in part 1. Beauty abounds in the grass areas and seashore. For this job, I raised my Fujifilm XT3 up to my eye.

There were also three birds and a coyote that wanted their picture taken.

Before we headed for home, I just had to see how the Point Reyes was getting along. The S.S. Point Reyes is a wooden steamship that crashed on a sand bar in the town of Inverness, Marin County, over a 100 years ago. Surviving having her stern set on fire by photographers light painting with steel wool in 2016, she still remains on the sand bar. Sadly she showed more corrosion in the few years since I last saw her.

This ends my wonderful get away with Laura. It was great to go to the ocean for the day!

Color and light: Night time carnival

I like to photograph at slow shutter speeds and zoom my lens in and out. So when I learned there was a small carnival at a the Sunrise Mall shopping center, in Citrus Heights, parking lot, my photo buddies and I got down there. We did the same visitation in 2018 and the carnival was much better: more rides, more people and a working Ferris wheel. I think the almost rainy weather may have had something to do with it.

But, I had fun anyway. Here’s some of what I captured that evening.

I’ve got my camera ready for next year. Hopefully there will be a working Ferris wheel and more rides.

Lens Artists Challenge #172: A Day of My Week

Busy, is the way I describe most of my weeks. They may start out with a blank calendar, but end up full. When I sometimes have a few days blank, I enjoy relaxing and catching up with stuff at home. But the one constant is my weekly photo outing with friends.

Amy is asking us to post about one day of our week. Here’s mine.

Early this month, Marlene, Laura and I went in search of Fall color in an area called Hope Valley. It’s a day outing since the drive is about 2 hours long. This day did not disappoint us. Colors of orange, yellow and rust were waiting for us on the aspen and other trees.

Here are some of the images gathered that October day.

October 9 was a fun day outing during our week. Thank you Amy!

Art, art everywhere: Wide Open Walls, part 3

One more time we ventured down to Sacramento to find more murals. We began at Sac State (California State University, Sacramento) because we heard they had mural on and around the campus. We found none! So we headed back to the city. Photographing murals requires a lot of driving and patience. Sometimes we find other gems too.

Here’s what we found this recent Sunday morning. I didn’t photograph murals I had found in previous years except for the Johnny Cash mural. It’s so impressive. So was the reflection of the mural on a building across the street.

Another building had its walls dedicated to the women of the suffragette movement.

This wall was colorful and full of dragonflies.

And what a great “Reserved Parking” sign.

Here’s some of the other things that caught my eye.

I hope you enjoyed this series.