Monday, April 30, 2007

Tile fountain

Another fountain from Balboa Park. Click, here, here, or here to see the other ones that I've shown before.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Pooch paradise

Tag for Dogs and Cats in Hillcrest has everything your pet ever wanted and more. Even jewelry.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Deer crossing

I'm not sure if this sign along the 52 freeway is actually necessary. I'm sure that deer may have crossed this way at one time, but right now there is quite a bit of construction along the freeway and I hear that new housing is planned for the north side of the freeway across from Tierrasanta.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Business has been great today!

Another food contribution from Stu ....this is all that's left of Miss Piggy. Behind the excellent Jasmine restaurant in Kearney Mesa is a chinese food counter called Jasmine Express. You can pick up any two dishes plus fried rice for $5.50, and they really heap it up, too. Often, but not always, they have specials of roast duck and roast piggy. Until the piggy's all gone, that is.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Path in San Elijo Lagoon

Most of the San Diego coastline, as you drive north, naturally should be coastal wetlands. Much of it has been filled in to make housing, but there are a few wetlands areas left. San Elijo Lagoon is one such area (located between Solana Beach & Encinitas - still in San Diego County, but no longer in the City of San Diego). There are many great trails, and it's easy to get to (In fact, I5 goes right through it!). Click to view one of my favorite native wetlands plants, Scirpus californicus.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Green stairs

Step off the stairs and you are on the beach at La Jolla Shores. Along the beach there are a few houses, the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club, and the Marine Room restaurant. The proximity to the ocean makes for a beautiful dining experience, but the restaurant has been the victim of mother nature as well. In the 80's a big storm broke through the windows and flooded the restaurant. Click here to see an old photo of the crashing surf just outside the Marine Room.
That's not green carpeting or paint on the stairway, it's algae.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


La Jolla Shores is a popular entry point for kayakers, scuba divers, and snorkelers. In the photo above paddlers are waiting to check out the La Jolla Sea Caves that are within the 75 million year old sandstone cliffs seen in the distance. The Sea Caves are only accessible by kayak, except one called Sunny Jim's. Sunny Jim's Cave is accessible through the Cave Store where a man-made tunnel was built with steps leading down into the cave.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Pigeon pie

Stu was nice enough to share this photo and description of his birthday dinner with us: This is a Moroccan speciality called b'stilla. Strictly speaking it is made from pigeon breast, but this one was actually made with chicken and mystery spices. On top is a crust of filo dough and, yes, a dusting of powdered sugar. This was served at the Kous-kous bistro in Hillcrest for my birthday dinner, along with a complimentary bottle of champagne. B'stilla is not on the menu but owner/chef Moumen Nouri makes some if he has time. If you go early and ask politely, you might get one.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

La Jolla Half Marathon

Want to wake up around 4 am to run 13 miles? Some 5,000 people did today in the La Jolla Half Marathon. Congrats to my husband and my friend Carla and the 4,998 others! The scenic course starts at the Del Mar fairgrounds and racetrack, up a killer hill to Torrey Pines State Park, passes by Torrey Pines Golf Course, the Salk Institute, La Jolla Shores boardwalk (pictured above), and ends at La Jolla Cove.
And Happy Birthday to Stu!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Descending into SAN

Last week I took a trip to San Francisco and on the flight home I thought I could get some photos from the plane descending into San Diego International Airport. The above photo looks toward downtown and is the opposite view of the photo Stu took that I posted last Wednesday.
In this photo you see downtown buildings and part of San Diego harbor. Welcome to San Diego, clear skies, local temperature is 62 degrees F.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Local brew

This garden setting is the view at Karl Strauss Brewery restaurant in Sorrento Mesa. It's a little sanctuary among telecom and biotech businesses. The company opened their first brewery restaurant in downtown San Diego in 1989 and this photo is of their second restaurant. Happy Friday, have a beer and relax!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Drive-to-Work Treat

This plant bloomed all last summer, at the side of the road. I stopped here each morning to wait for a break in traffic. This is when I'd find myself gazing upon the plant, enjoying each new bloom as the summer wore on. It was a lovely way to start the work day.
I was hoping it's 'children' would bloom this spring & summer, but so far nothing. :-P

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Cleared to land

Cover your ears while reading this contribution from Stu because the noise level from where he was standing would give you a rattle.
Some time back, Felicia showed you the wonderful Italian deli/restaurant Mona Lisa. I thought you might also like to see how close it is to the glidepath of jets landing at San Diego International. Our airport must be closer to downtown than any other major airport in the US -- as you come in to land it seems as though the left wingtip brushes the high-rise office buildings.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Beach house #3

The interesting thing about La Jolla's neighborhoods is that there is a mix of home styles — space ships (see Beach house #2), craftsman bungalows and modest homes, Spanish colonial revival styles, and modern homes. This looks like 80's architecture to me.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Beach house #2

The aliens have landed and this is where they keep their space ship parked. :)
I wish I could tell you more about this La Jolla house, but I have no information to share. Maybe built in the 50's? Maybe someone more architecturally knowledgable will comment?

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Beach house #1

Here is the long view of a McMansion that is visable from the trail down to the beach. Looking at some of these houses I wonder who lives there (a family of 10?), how do they fill all that space, what does their pool look like?

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Lifestyles of the rich & famous

I bet you all thought you were in Naples, Florida when you saw this photo. I thought I'd show a few of the mansions that I saw when I took a hike a few week's ago near Black's Beach in La Jolla. These multi-million dollar homes sit at the top of the cliffs with views of the ocean. This place is so secluded that this is all we can see of the property.

Friday, April 13, 2007


Cheers and Happy Friday to you all! This photo is of a medium margarita from Casa de Pico — I can't handle the large! Let me buy you a drink. Help yourself to the tortilla chips. Do you like your margarita blended or on the rocks? Salt, or no salt? Traditional, strawberry, kiwi, or mango?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Taming of the Giraffes

In my opinion, the reason the San Diego Zoo is "World Famous" is because of the Wild Animal Park. For those who don't know, it's an incredibly cool park with a massive valley area where many animals roam together "free-ish" (unlike most zoos with their small, separate enclosures). One of the opportunities available to visitors is a photo safari, which I highly recommend. Where else in San Diego can you get up close and feed a pack of hungry giraffes? (who I discovered really are quite nosey & pushy things after all!)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Power lines

I took this photo while I was sitting in traffic on the 52 freeway. The freeway cuts through a mountain area with Mission Trails Regional Park on one side and the Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar on the other side. This photo looks toward the park. Does anyone know what these colored balls on the power lines are for?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Camp Kearny

Among the plants in Grandma Mary's yard is this old sign showing distances to various points from San Diego. Camp Kearny was a training center for the Army that was established around 1917 and was also known as Kearny Mesa. Today it is known as the Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar. Click here for some history and here for a few old photos of Camp Kearny. And (as you may know), Escondido, Riverside, and Los Angeles are cities to the north of San Diego.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Fast wings

Yesterday I was so proud of myself for catching this little girl in action. My first thought was that Abraham Lincoln of Brookville, Ohio has probably taken some awesome close-up photos of hummingbirds. I am embarrassed to say that I don't know what type of hummingbird or any other details about these birds, but do check out Abraham's beautiful photos and detailed information from April 8th on hummingbirds. From Abraham's post, one detail that impressed me was that several baby eggs could all fit under a bottle cap.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Garden tranquility

For Easter, we spent our afternoon in our Grandma Mary's garden. She has lots of thriving plants and this tranquil koi pond. The kids followed the fish from one end of the pond to the other trying to get a closer look. Hope you had a restful and happy Sunday!

Saturday, April 07, 2007


Wondering what to do for your next birthday party? At Ceramicafe you choose your own plate, cup, picture frame, tile, cute little animal, or teapot to paint. They will glaze and fire your masterpiece then you come back in about a week for the finished product. They also reserve the "party room" if you want to have a glass of wine and make it a "girls (or guys) night out".

Friday, April 06, 2007

Hand Roll

Another contribution and food photo from Stu. — When I saw that the Hillcrest restaurant Chilangos, specializing in Mexico City recipes, had turned into a Japanese restaurant (now called Sushi Teriyaki House), I was sad because I always found the owner charming and efficient. But when I went there, I discovered that the staff was still the same bunch of Mexicans. They've just decided that sushi is where it's at now. Some of the Mexican décor is still around, making an incongruous but "very Hillcrest" atmosphere.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Secret Beach

One of San Diego's best-kept secrets is Kellogg Beach. Even most locals don't know about it. This small beach is never crowded. Add that to its lack of waves and its perfect for those with small children. This photo was taken in the middle of spring break!
Where is it located? Hmm...I don't remember... ;-)


Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Mushroom house & funicular

Here is another view further south showing what is called the "mushroom house". This private beach house has its own funicular (cable car) up the cliffs where there are million dollar homes at the top overlooking the ocean. The funicular is no longer functioning and anything of its kind would be strictly prohibited today as we have a special Commission to protect California's coastline.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Witch's hair

I know you all were hoping to see a naked person from Black's Beach, but here is another type of native species. This is a plant known as witch's hair or devil's thread (official name is cuscuta or dodder) It is a leafless parasitic plant that grows along the trail. P.S.: I didn't see anyone in the nude! And like Denton hinted, I think I would have felt too voyeuristic to take photos at this beach.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Beach bird

There is a very easy trail that leads down to Black's Beach (the nude beach). The area spans several miles. The northern part is a hot spot for surfers and nude sunbathers and the southern end has tidepools and leads around toward Scripps Pier. My friend Jill and I took a walk to the south and saw this snowy egret.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

A public mailbox - Theme Day

It was fun to drop a letter into this R2D2 mailbox and this is part of a campaign by the US Postal Service to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Star Wars. On May 25th the postal service will release 15 Star Wars postal stamps and you can vote for your favorite. I vote for Yoda. Click on a city below to see other public mailboxes around the world.
London (UK) -Grenoble (France) -Rotterdam (Netherlands) -Greenville SC (USA) -Hyde (UK) -Villigen (Switzerland) -Albuquerque NM (USA) -Mazatlan (Mexico) -Montréal (Canada) -Stayton OR (USA) -Shanghai (China) -Jing -Arradon (France) -Sequim WA (USA) -Newcastle upon Tyne (England) -Seattle WA (USA) -Kim -Bastia (Corse) -Minneapolis MN (USA) -Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) -Joplin MO (USA) -Sharon, CT (USA) -Cottage Grove MN [USA] -Houston, TX (USA) -Candice & Megan -Singapore - by Keropokman. -Guelph, ON (Canada) -Menton (France) -Monte Carlo, Monaco -Naples, FL (USA) -Kyoto (Japan) -Tokyo (Japan) -Aliso Viejo, CA (USA) -Cape Town (South Africa) - Jakarta (Indonesia) -Kitakami (Japan) -Tel Aviv (Israel) -Vantaa(Finland) -Guadalajara (Mexico) -Auckland (New Zealand) -Nelson (New Zealand) -Tuzla (B&H) -Brussels (Belgium) -Anderson, SC (USA) -Lubbock, TX (USA) -John, Melbourne, (Australia) -Stavanger (Norway) -Tenerife (Spain) -Stockholm (Sweden) -Boston, MA (USA) -Not Strictly Seattle, Susan -New York City, (USA), Ming the Merciless -Paris [Eric], (France) -Ampang (Selangor) -Sydney (Nathalie) Australia -ailea , HI (USA) -Manila (Philippines) -Sydney (Sally) Australia -Cork (Ireland) -Saarbrücken (Germany) -Saint Paul MN (USA) by Carol -San Diego, CA (USA) -Mexico [POLY], (Mexico) -Budapest (Hungary) -Singapore (Singapore by Zannnie) -Madrid [Dsole] (Spain) -Nottingham (England) -Bandung (Indonesia) -London - Jonemo (UK) -