Look, Snow

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We finally got a little snow…. not much, but enough to have the animals hunker down and get out of the wind and snow.  This little pygmy owl sat and gazed at the snow and watched it come in.  Any time we see some of the more ‘exotic’ and rare animals, we are thrilled… and this pygmy owl was no exception.

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Happy Snow

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While the East coast is getting hit with repeated snow storms, Arizona is getting left out of the action.  Now I know most people don’t think of AZ as getting snow… but for Northern Arizona it is part of our seasons, and one we count on to get precipitation to keep our trees healthy and our forests free from wildfires.  For a  normal winter (October – March, or so) we would expect to see maybe 6′ – 10′ of snow.  While that may not be a lot for some Eastern states, it’s about right for us.  Thus far this winter, we have seen none.

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That is until this past weekend.  I’m happy to report we finally got some snow!  Woohoo.  We probably got about 8″ at our home.  Having been house bound, we opted to go to the rim to check out their snow and maybe get some pix.

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The rim probably got around a foot of snow.  It was beautiful.

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There is something special about new fallen fresh snow, clinging to the trees and their trunks.  It is a magical sight.  I never used to like snow – too cold.  But I have developed an appreciation for it’s beauty.

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… and it always tends to bring out the animals.  We were lucky to see a number of elk – all of whom where quite surprised to see our Jeep slogging through the deep snow.

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Picture in Picture

I learned this cool technique.  I learned it as ‘Picture in Picture’ which reminds me of that feature I never use on my tv.  Apparently it’s all the rage with Snapchat and such.  Being behind the times (where I pretty much live), I had never heard of or seen it.

The idea is you take a photograph of your hands holding your phone, and put them on a blank layer (transparency) in Photoshop.  Then you take a photograph and fit it to the background.  Cut and paste the same photography INTO (Paste Special) your picture of your phone. (Use the polygonal lasso tool to make the selection of your phone screen.) Don’t forget to blur background layer for best effect.

And wa-la…

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Cool, hunh?!

 

 

 

May Day Snow

When I wrote about Snow showers in my kritterspaw blog (here),  I thought it was our last snow storm of the year.  Phoenix, 2 hours south has already seen 90F days.  Well, in the week since then Phoenix has seen 100F days, the calendar has rolled over to May, and we got another snow storm.  Much to the delight of our visiting San Diego friends, we were treated with a magical day on the rim of light snow, fog, and cool weather conditions.  The weather made for interesting photos and a great day.

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We managed to grab an opening in the snow fall to stop for a glorious picnic as we watched the snow melt off the trees like pouring rain.

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As the fog rolled in, the weather just got more mysterious, and along with it the photographic opportunities.

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While you couldn’t see the rim well, it brought an otherworldly eeriness to our outing.

It truly was a magical day.  So glad we were able to enjoy it, and share it with friends.

Spring comes early

We’ve only lived in the mountains with the snow for a few years (4 years this year).  So we are still trying to figure out the weather patterns and such.  I have no idea how you know when the snow is over, and Spring is on the way.  But then neither do the weather forecasters.

We got our last snow just last week, on Groundhog Day of all things.

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But since that snow, the animals have been coming out of hiding.  We have seen deer and elk in the community, in the forest, and on the roads.

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As I type this, I’m watching this little bunny hopping around our front yard looking for food.  The chipmunks and squirrels are active… and the birds are coming back.  The ground is alive with blue jays and the occasional yellow bird even.

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Yesterday we saw several wasps and bees make their first appearance.

We may have another dusting of snow still this winter… but it sure seems like the animals know something the rest of us don’t… Spring is coming.

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