Sunday, December 30, 2007

Christmas (and Colbert)

Merry Christmas all,
Christmas this year was white. I haven't been in snow for Christmas since living in Tahoe.
Betsy and I are spending the holidays in Pleasent View, UT with her family. This was a shot out the window on Christmas morning! Snow everywhere! Snow in Utah is so light and fluffy!
Christmas was fun. Presents, food, sledding, naps, more presents, more napping. I got tons of gifts and gave many too. It was fun to be with young kids on Christmas morning!

One of my favorite gifts I received this year was a copy of I am America (And so can you). So funny! I remember a time (before the strike) where I would watch the previous night's episode on DVR while getting ready for work. I miss Stephen's quirky views of current events. Almost as fun as Tatanka's point of view. Reading the book over the past few days reminds me that I miss the show. I hope the strike ends soon so I can enjoy new episodes.

Pick up a copy!


The other day at the academy I was trying to finish my thesis. I needed a break and was walking down the hall and came face to face with a giant grizzly bear! Holy smokes. I thought I was done for. For some reason, the bear seemed distracted and was staring to his left.
I moved forward slowly and was sure to not make any sudden moves. Luckily this was before lunch and I didn't have any food smells on my body so I was able to get close enough to snap a quick photo and then made a run for it.
It was scary! I think it saw me running and gave chase. I made it to the hallway and was safe. The bear must have been chained up or something because he didn't make it down the hall.

I can understand why Stephen is so afraid of these things!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Tropical Plants of the week!

So I haven't updated my blog since Oct 14, 2007. Holy smokes. I have no excuse. I just haven't had the time or desire to update.
Also, winter.

It is hard to update a plant blog when the dead of winter is upon us. Not so many flowers. Luckily a few weeks ago for my honeymoon I went to the tropical lands of Hawaii. Here is a small sample of what I saw...

First up it the state flower of Hawaii, Hibiscus, a member of the Malvaceae family! This flower is everywhere. You may recognize this flower in its more common form....

another common flower we saw in Paradise was this orchid. People leave them on your pillows, deliver them to your room, etc....

another great thing about the tropics are chance meetings with your favorite fruits. They grow on the side of the road and in plantations, even in the lobby of your hotel. Here are some bananas

and here is a mini pineapple growing in the lobby.

the very rare chocolate covered strawberries grow wild here...

this is a member of the Piperaceae family. Members of this family are distinct because of the large bract and stalk of small flowers. There are hundreds of tiny flowers on that stalk.

Here is a member of Nyctaginaceae, or the Four o' Clock family, Bougainvillea.
members of this genus also have showy bracts but have tubular flowers in a set of three. They are usually white.

a member of Iridaceae...

many of the flowers you have seen here are used in the garden trade. I love the tropics!