Posted in flower of the day, Photo-a-day challenge

Flower of the Day: June 26, 2019. The biggest sunflower I’ve seen.

I’ve seen tall sunflowers at pumpkin patches but I never thought I’d see one growing this large in someone’s yard. It was worth the time to pull over and check them out in the blazing heat.

When my kids and I read The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle, I didn’t think a flower could grow as tall or taller than a house. That is until yesterday, when I saw with my own eyes that sunflowers can grow as tall as they please: keep looking towards the sun.

Its stems were thick, solid, and hardy (not that I tried bending them to check its hardiness) as bamboo stems. Amazing sight. I hope that house owner knows their flowers bring joy and admiration of nature to passersby.

A giant sunflower growing on a giant stem. Amazed at its height and size.
A regular-sized sunflower growing underneath the gargantuan one.

“Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow. It’s what sunflowers do.”

Helen Keller
Another impressive sunflower in this bush

Thanks Cee for hosting this FOTD challenge!

Posted in Photo-a-day challenge

City Sonnet Photo-a-Day Challenge: June 02, 2019. Yellow

Here is my entry for City Sonnet’s June Photo-a-Day Challenge for yellow.

Yellow fish that looks like a clay figure. Check out its little lips.

Over time, canary yellow has become one of my favorite colors. Its bright color cheers me up and makes me think of warmth, sweetness, and the open country fields sprinkled with yellow daisies.

According to the website Empowered by Color, colors have emotions associated with it: “the color psychology of yellow is uplifting and illuminating, offering hope, happiness, cheerfulness and fun.” and “In the meaning of colors, yellow inspires original thought and inquisitiveness.”

One year in college I lived in an apartment with canary yellow kitchen walls with bright green cabinet knobs. I didn’t complain since this was my first apartment to live in by myself and my parents paid the rent. Anything would do. I often wondered what the landlord was thinking in picking this unconventional color for the kitchen walls. Shouldn’t it be white, like the walls at home? It’s a color that grew on me and I realized that its brightness creates a cheerful and soothing ambiance. Now I love yellow.

Posted in Photo-a-day challenge

City Sonnet’s Photo a Day Challenge: May 5, 2019. Birds: Peacock, Owl pellets (a squeamish experiment)

Name of bird unknown. Picture taken at San Diego Safari Park Zoo

Peacocks make trilling sounds. When I first heard it from afar I thought it was an angry cat meowing. But it turned out to be this colorful bird.

Resident Peacock at Ardenwood Farm

On a whim, my kids and I decided to dissect an owl pellet. I found a foil-shaped egg for $3.50 by the cash register of a school supply store. The lady told me that young kids enjoy this fun science activity, especially if they like digging for dinosaur bones or treasures.

That sounded like something my kids would like, so I ended up bringing the pellets home. Once we opened it and saw the brown lump of dirt, my kids screamed and refused to go near it. Our babysitter came to look at what we were doing and almost threw up.

I am not kidding: it was that gross. But I wanted to show them the importance of persevering through challenges and finishing what you start (even if it makes you squeamish). So I dissected it myself (with plastic gloves and lots of cleaning solution and lots of regret). I later glued the bone pieces onto a paper in a CD case (so we could identify which animal it ate).

It’s safe to say I will never do this experiment again; once is enough. We still get grossed out thinking about it and the CD case is duct taped and put away in a brown lunch bag. After all the work I invested into it, I don’t have the heart to throw it out, just yet.