Saturday, May 26, 2007

Shabbat Walk in the High Meadow

We have been so very busy lately!

Because we had a major holy day this week, we packed a lot project planning and shopping into Friday afternoon.

We have three major projects planned for the summer. We are going to purchase and install--yes, we will install--hardwood floors in the dining room, hallways, living room and the offices. We are going purchase and have carpet installed in the two master suites. And I am planning a rock slope and steps for the hill at the edge of the side garden.

Today it was nice to take a Shabbat walk in the high meadow south of our house. This meadow will eventually be developed and we are hoping to buy a lot on its edge. In the meantime, it has such a beautiful view of the Sandia Mountain Fault Thrust.

Looking to the north, we can look down at our house--ours is the green roof that has the Ponderosa Pine growing in front of it. Our elevation (about 7300 feet) is the higher part of the Pinyon Juniper Woodland ecological zone. Since it is close to the ecotone (transition) with the higher Ponderosa Pine ecological zone, a few Poderosas tower about the rest of the trees. We have a living laboratory here for learning about the ecological zones and how they change with elevation from High Desert Shortgrass Prairie (in Albuquerque) all the way through to the Spruce-Fir Woodland at the top of the Sandias. At a little over 2 miles in elevation, at our latitude, the Sandias are not quite high enough to have an Alpine Tundra zone.

This year, the wildflowers are coming out early, and are quite spectacular.

We took a nice picture of some Indian Paintbrush--a flower we usually see blooming later in the summer when the monsoon rains come in.

There are a lot of purple peaflowers and purple "pinks" growing the meadows around here, too. We can see the sunflowers coming up, but they won't be blooming for a while. N. was interested to learn that New Mexico has its very own sunflower, Helianthus neomexicanus, that blooms along our roadsides in mid-to-late summer.

I know I have said this a great many times, but look at how green our meadow is! We are just thrilled with the rains we have gotten here in central New Mexico this spring! It is so green that we actually got chlorophyll stains on our shoes and jeans! The fire danger is only moderate this year. Last year at this time it was extreme!

Zoey and Lily had a great time sniffing among the gopher holes in the meadow. No gophers in sight, though. They are smart enough to stay inside when they hear us walking the dogs above!

It's with great gratitude that we took a peaceful Shabbat walk on the meadow this morning.
Tonight, Bruce is the co-host for the first of the summer Star Parties at Oak Flat Picnic Ground further south in the Sandias. He is loading his telescope in the truck as we speak.

Tomorrow it's back to project planning and prep! I am hoping to get the slope on the small hill in the side garden. Bruce will be working on getting his garage workshop ready for hardwood floor project. He will also be determining the area to be floored and the number of boxes of Brazilian Cherry we'll need. N. will have a great opportunity to put his math into practice with both of us!


Beth: said...

What an incredible region you live in -- so different from anywhere I have ever lived, myself. I love seeing and reading about your weather and local flora.

I hope you'll be pleased with the Kodak Z612 -- I know I am! It is my first digital camera, and as I probably mentioned previously, it is perfectly suited to my nature-and-child photographing needs.

Kaber said...

What a beautiful area!

We put 'fake' hardwood floors in last year..... the floating laminate type... real was too ccostly. But I like our florrs we have now! Have fun, enjoy and good luck!

you asked about our summer. We do year round, but the sumer is more unschool, more fun projects. not very 'book-y' They will rean and I will have them do a little math throughout the week (Ki looses skills if he doesn't use them and ggavin is gifted in math and I like to see him continue to advance in it.

Not sure what exactly we will be doing. I hope to do anotherlapbook.

Gavi said...

Wow. Your posts are so beautiful and inspirational. Thank you for sharing with everyone. And thank you for the gorgeous!!!