Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Winter Break

 Winter break turned into a time where it was colder outside
than I prefer for outside adventures, so this has not turned into
a frequent update of daily outdoor adventures.

So what are we going to do during your break?
Are we just going to wait for the mail?

Hang out by the Christmas tree?

And see pictures of how Christmas is spent locally
instead of going out to see it in person?

Okay, yeah that sounds pretty good.
But, on December 21st, I took  Autumn to the
Alameda Rio Grande Wetlands.

I had taken Ella to this location during early November.
We saw the trees in beautiful fall colors.
Now the trees are definitely winter trees.

The geese who also stayed at the pond
were active flying overhead.

Autumn wanted to see the ducks in the pond.

One came near us.

We watched it dive to find food to eat in the pond.
It was a beautiful and peaceful visit.

After watching the weather for a few days
we traveled to see my mom in  Taos
on December 24th.

We stopped by the Ranchos de Taos Mission Church.
We had visited this church in July with our visitor, Voir.

It was ready for Christmas services. 
They had white paper bags with sand and candles
as luminarias instead of the frequently used
brown paper bags.

Recent snow lingered around the church.

Ella, Autumn, and Amaya posed on the side wall
with the luminarias.

Ella noticed that she needed her sweater for outside adventures.

My mom was at work in retail on December 24th,
so we spent the rest of the afternoon at her place.

My mom had a person sized Christmas tree.
The funny thing about her tree is that only the top half
had decorations on it due to her young cats.
It was still beautiful as it had lights on the whole tree.

On Christmas morning we went to a coffee shop
on the plaza.

 The coffee shop served coffee from Starbucks
in the Hotel La Fonda.

The plaza was beautifully decorated for Christmas.

They had brown paper bag luminarias.
One possibility for burning candles in paper bags
is that some do burn, so it is important to put them
in safe, non flammable locations.

These are photos my mom sent me of the plaza
at night on December 29th because I was not going
out in the snow and the cold while I was there.

After our morning beverages, we drove out to Arroyo Seco,
which is a small, rural village.

There is a small log cabin that was rebuilt on the side of the
Arroyo Seco Mercantile.

It was built many years ago by and for the founding family
of this village.

Ella and Amaya visited this location at the end of July.
At that time, the flowers were so tall that they impeded
the view of the cabin.

December 25, 2015

July 21, 2015

I spent most of our brief time in Arroyo Seco
photographing the cabin and garden that we had visited
in July.

December 25, 2015

July 21, 2015

December 25, 2015

July 21, 2015
As we walked around,
I started to notice icicles from many buildings!
It is definitely winter!

Later in the day we went out to a late lunch
at a restaurant near the plaza. We had a quiet day
at her home most of the day.

On the 26th, Christmas was over.
In the morning, the sky was clear, but accumulated snow
from earlier and periodic snowfall was on the ground.

I walked outside for a short time.

By the evening, the sky was cloudy and snow fell again.

I took more pictures inside of her home during the day.
She has one very shy cat who is about a year older
than the younger cats.

The younger cats are brothers who are less than a year old.

They are much more active. They are the reason why
the Christmas tree only had decorations on the top half.

My mom also has two sewing machines that are out.
This older Singer is in my mom's bedroom.

It belonged to her mother.
I remember it most from where it was in grandma's house
years ago before she passed away.

My mom also has a basic vintage Singer
that she uses for quilting.

It is electric, but only has a straight stitch.
I have never used it for doll clothes due to the zig-zag stitch
I use to finish edges when I make doll clothes.

My mom has a more modern machine with more uses on it,
but prefers this one for quilting.

 On the 27th, my mom went to work at a retail store
near the plaza. I brought her and her co-worker lunch
from a favorite local restaurant.

Amaya came with me for a few photos on the plaza.

 My favorite photo of this outing is of Amaya
near the luminaria.

There is a building near the parking lot
that is very New Mexican in appearance.

More icicles!

 I spent the rest of the day at my mom's home,
waiting for her to return home from work. It
had started to snow AGAIN.

We had a blizzard storm for several days in the south-eastern
part of the state, including Albuquerque.
I had planned my visit to Taos in a way that I could safely
travel between Albuquerque and Taos.

 I planned to leave on the 28th. I watched the weather reports
and monitored the road conditions online. I waited until the middle
of the day before I left so that the roads would be clear
from the weekend snow.

 I was happy that the roads were safe for travel
by the time I finally traveled home.

 The temperatures are still colder than I prefer outside,
and patches of snow are still on the ground,
so at this point, my winter break is a time of being inside,
and more thoughtful and reflective than ready for the next adventure.
We wish our friends a happy new year in this season of quiet rest!

1 comment:

  1. When I heard about the snow in New Mexico we were thinking of you! Glad that you are all well. It has been more spring-like here in Germany for too long. Now the wind has changed and the cold air comes from the east. Happy New Year to you all!