|Live Coastal Oak (Quercus agrifolia)|
As the seasons turn may we all enjoy a heartful
|Live Coastal Oak (Quercus agrifolia)|
|1832 San Felipe Circle, Santa Fe, New Mexico|
|Off leash Shasta's having great fun leaping in the snow|
after being cooped up in the car for three days.
|35 Page Street, Cotati, California|
picture taken by Michael Stoyka.
Our search for a Sonoma County home began in earnest the day after our arrival. We are ever so fortunate to have another outstanding realtor. We spent four days driving around Petaluma as this is where we imagined ourselves buying a house. In the area we desired to live no houses were for sale. And then this house pictured above appeared in Cotati.
Our realtor, Dwight and I jumped on looking at it immediately. We have long time English friends who live in Cotati not far from this house so they are excited to have us nearby. Tanis came to see the house the day before offers were due. She said, "It is so you," and we discovered she had never been to Cotati before. We had a lovely lunch at the Redwood Cafe to celebrate finding our "perfect" house.
So now we are waiting to move in. As we orchestrate the move in we are enjoying a frequent
|The above picture was taken from Auntie T's lovely|
Pt. Reyes Station home's outside sitting area.
Since the tide is out the area is pretty much dry.
When we first visited many years ago,
this area was grasslands filled with cattle grazing.
We watched the returning of the water to this area
during the Giacomini Wetland Restoration Project.
When the last levee was breached,
the water previously held back returned.
It was a pretty impressive event which we felt fortunate to view.
Now when the tide is "in" the area is filled with
all kinds of birds, large and small, feeding.
|The dead tree has been purposely left for the herons, |
both kinds of egrets, and Bald Eagles to roost in.
While sitting in the sunshine turkey vultures like to spred out their wings to dry.
|The very first time Shasta visited she walked onto the pond.|
She was surprised when she fell into water.
Needless to say, she, BEing the very smart dog she is,
has not repeated her experience. She presently is walking
about the pond sniffing all the delicious smells left
by the myriad of critters who visit.
|A stunning white flowering area|
|Another impressive flowering area. |
This one in shades of pink to lavender.
|Pink flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum)|
|The bottom of this walkway leads|
to the brick area featured in the very first picture above.
|One of the many different California Wild Lilacs (Ceanothus).|
This particular one was chosen for this spot because of its vibrant purple color.
| Both buildings of this home have a sod roof. |
There is a bedroom and bathroom in one building
and in the other is a kitchen, living room,
meditation room, computer space
and TV room with a Murphy bed
+ another bathroom with a sauna adjoined.
Many of the kittie cats that have lived here
love to sleep on the luxurious roofs for their naps.
The hot tub is on left in this picture
with table and chairs for eating outside slightly to its right.
Apple trees have been planted below the bricked area.
Looking beyond the apple trees is the tidal area towards the West.
Behind the far ridge covered with trees is the Pacific Ocean.
The area is known as the Point Reyes National Seashore.
The entire time we were all together in this Aaaaaaaaah Awesome setting, we shared many a
Our arrival in Sonoma County was heralded by verdant green rolling hills, teeny tiny lambs gamboling together, cows and calves feasting on fields of lush green grass and fruit tree in glorious bloom.
|Rosemary in full flower|
near the Joe Rodota Trail
|Wild plum tree in bloom along the Joe Rodota Trail|
in Sebastopol. This trail was previously a railroad track . . .
now a wonderful biking, walking, running path
between Sebastopol and Santa Rosa.
Ahhhhhhhh . . . the very best is BEing at sea level where my heart is so happy because it does not have to work so hard and walking is pleasurably easy rather than a breath taking experience. Shasta is enjoying eating fresh green grass on our early morning stroll down the lane. She does miss her romps with Hobbs at Lopez Park however.
The Spring or Vernal Equinox is March 20, 2021. It occurs when the Sun heading North in the sky crosses the equator line. This tilting more towards the Sun results in increasing daylight hours and warming temperatures here in the Northern Hemisphere. This shift brings about all the glorious signs of Spring that are so uplifting after Winter.
We have recently come from the high mountainous desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico, where it was Winter when we departed. Thus we are especially joyful to BE experiencing the vibrancy of Spring here in Sonoma County. Rain has been falling a number of days we have been here. The rain feels so nourishing and many tell us that it is so needed. Auntie T in Point Reyes Station, California, tells us she has measured only 1/2 of her typical rainfall in her rain gauge.
|Wild turkeys with the males strutting their stuff by fanning|
out their tails and puffing up their feather to attract the females.
|Mustard blooming in the foreground|
Valley Oaks in the back ground.
This whole year plus of "lock down" has taken a toll on all of us. At this time of Spring when we see renewal all about us, may we feel the vitality of springtime and the regenerative energy. Ahold of the season's energy may we dig deep to tap into our own resilience for each day going forward during these trying times.
How strange and wonderful our home, our earth,
With its swirling vaporous atmosphere,
Its flowing and frozen climbing creatures,
The croaking things with wings that hang on rocks
And soar through fog, the furry grass, the scaly seas
How utterly rich and wild . . .
Yet some among us have the nerve,
The insolence, the brass, the gall to whine
About the limitations of our earthbound fate
And yearn for some more perfect world beyond the sky
We are none of us good enough
For the world we have.
As we celebrate Spring in all her glory may we each have a joyful belly
|Photograph taken by Rosa Arroyo|
near Villanueva, New Mexico:
two of her dogs romping in the snow.
We awakened to still more snow and it continued snowing for several hours after we were preparing breakfast. I am so aware this "unseasonal weather" here and across much of the United States is another reminder that the climate catastrophe is upon us. Our inadequate, and in some areas nonexistent, preparation for such events is bringing to "front and center" that altering these ways of going about our lives will determine our future.
I receive regular posts from Susan Wittig Albert who lives in the Hill Country of Texas. In her recent one she wrote of their preparations on their property and about what she is learning. Included in this post were "comments" and in one of these the below appeared:
Prayer for Texas
As most of you have now read, or heard from me directly, we are leaving Santa Fe, New Mexico, to return "home", as Shasta says, "and none too soon! Let's 'shake a leg' and do it . . . now!" Of course, we are not going back to MuRefuge, rather we are looking to buy a small house, i.e., bungalow, in Petaluma. I trust just the "perfect" one will have just posted for sale as we arrive at our short term rental in Sebastopol.
AND I am considering the wonderful time we have all spent in Santa Fe as an extended vacation of 3 years and 4 months. We have experienced the Pueblo native culture and visited stunningly beautiful sites that only New Mexico has. The entertainment before the pandemic was world class and only a few minutes drive from our home. The neighborhood in which we live is the very best that the city has to offer. And as Dwight says, "this is one of the top two homes I have ever lived in." We will sorely miss our Stamm home which will go on the market March 06, 2021.
And as my friend Rob said upon receiving the picture of our Prius under 7 1/2 inches of snow: "this is your farewell from Mother Nature."
The climate catastrophe has an Arctic Air Mass hovering over most of the Central United States including New Mexico. Record snow levels along with way below freezing temperatures is causing much distress . . . and has now for more than a week in some areas. There were 10 inches in the Seattle area, enough for Dwight's daughter to snowshoe out her front door over the weekend past.
|The view from our front door at about 7 a.m. |
on Tuesday, February 16, 2021.
|And the view from the sliding glass doors into the backyard.|
Snow is continuing to fall on and off all day with again frigid temperatures predicted overnight.
As we are essentially house bound let us all have a frequent, good belly
Upgrades to 1832 San Felipe Circle
prior to our January, 2018 purchase
Upgrades to 1832 San Felipe Circle
after January, 2018
|Evolution of the backyard:|
The long raised bed on the left
and the shorter one against the
far adobe wall are covered.
This entire property (grounds or home) has had no synthetic chemicals applied to or used in since January, 2018, thus is suitable for chemically sensitive individuals or those with autoimmune disorders that are triggered by toxic chemicals.