Thursday, January 28, 2010

Men, Motorcycles and Machines

I thought I'd add some more photos of Mozart's riding day earlier this month. He and his friend, Larry, usually stage their bikes somewhere in the desert, and then ride 60 to 70 miles into the wilderness. It's a great thing for a man to do. (and they come home in a great mood...and too tired to cause much trouble.)

The best thing about a ride is getting out into the open spaces and feeling free.

Climbing rocks is always fun.

There are trails to conquer.

And unexpected run-ins with other men...and sparring about whether its better on two wheels or four.

First born son (left), had a mishap last week with his car. He ran out of gas, lost control, hit a curb, and put a hole in his oil box (or whatever it's called). The car had to be towed home. He and his friend are about to pull the engine and look underneath to see what the damage is. And I drove 80 miles round trip to pick up a cherry picker and a "buddy" for this procedure.

Here it comes! Apparently the damage is not too bad...but there is a hole and something will have to be replaced...and money saved...and the car will sit in our driveway for awhile.

Since the first born has no wheels, he has moved back in. So there never seems to be a dull moment with both boys here and Mozart. And it's amazing how fast the food disappears.

I read Isaiah 35 this week. There are many hopeful words.

I liked this:

The desert and the parched land will be glad;
the wilderness will rejoice and blossom.
Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom;
it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.

I also liked:

Strengthen the feeble hands,
steady the knees that give way;
say to those with fearful hearts,
Be strong, do not fear;
your God will come."

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Before the Rain

Before the rain storms, I stopped by the Arboretum, late in the day, just before it closed. The last rays of sun tilted sideways through the trees making interesting shadows. Here are a couple of photos I took of the mountains. It looks as though there are no homes or buildings between this 125 acre parcel of "park" and the mountains. But they are hidden in the trees. The landscaping is such that one can pretend civilization is far away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

But a city dweller CAN get away from the busy traffic by hiking in the mountains, and here I am below with my friend Lynn. Sometimes we meet up here at sunset and then veer off the trail, and climb a steep hill. We sit on the top, and talk about life. On a clear day I have seen the ocean sparkling...some 60 miles away. The skyscrapers of Los Angeles are always visable on clear days.

A nice hiker took our picture on the lowlands, before we climbed the hill.

Speaking of mountains, Mozart was able to go riding for a day in early January with his friend Larry. They went for a long ride, and took pictures of each other jumping. That's Mozart flying though the air. I'm glad I wasn't watching this.

Two days before the rain, Letty and I went to the Santa Anita Race Track early in the morning to watch the horses work out. You can buy coffee, hot chocolate and breakfast and sit on the patio and watch the horses gallop by. On the patio, one can watch people studying horse statistics, observe jockey's grabbing a snack, catch conversations of horse-owners as they stand watching their investment work out on the track. It's fun to dip into their world for a short time, and then walk around this historical place. The movie, "Sea Biscuit" was filmed here.

Letty poses by the track. (Does it seem strange to see Palm trees in front of the mountains?) My niece from Colorado thought it looked strange (but nice).
If you'd like to make the pictures larger, just click on them.

I love the old Oak trees.

In former days, this is where the horse vetenarian worked.

A mysterious carriage.

I like the race track best when it's empty. (like a deserted beach)

I'll close with a verse I've been thinking about. I need wisdom in these next days and I'm thankful for James who reminds us...

"If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind."
James 1:6

It's really a relief to embrace "do not doubt". As soon as I do, I have peace. I know that whatever decisions I make in certain situations....all will work out okay.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Stop and Pray

I haven't posted for awhile for two reasons. I got busy, and I got the flu. I have some ideas for future posts, but for now, Haiti is on my mind. So I pray. And I feel as though I should stop right now and do so. Especially for the relief efforts, the relief workers, and the people. May God bring comfort, help and a strong sense of his presence.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year

My sister-in-law and her husband visited on Christmas and brought their beautiful dogs. My mom and I took them for a walk.

We had a nice Christmas. I have enjoyed a slower pace between Christmas and the New Year.

Here is one of my favorite Christmas Day pictures. It's nice to have a dog around to make the house look cozy...and it's nice to have guests. That's my brother-in-law Ken reading his book about WWII.

May you all have a Happy New Year!