Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Moab, Utah

High adventure in Moab

In the Southeastern corner of the state of Utah, a town of about 5,000 people welcomes outdoor enthusiasts to take in the unbelievable landscapes.
You're bound to find an activity to relax, take your breath away, or just appreciate the bounties of nature, no matter what your level of tolerance for excitement. :)
Some available thrills: Mountain biking, four-wheeling, hiking, canyon trips, scenic flights, ballooning, skydiving, golfing, and river rafting and fishing on the Colorado River.

The winter months in the LaSal mountains provide opportunities for sledding, skiing, and snowmobiling. But please be aware of high avalanche danger from November through April!

Our family and friends are a bunch of Jeeping enthusiasts, so this is what they do:
(Would you want to ride along?)

Riverside Inn, right on Main Street, offers affordable accommodations. The best part: an outdoor pool for those scorching summer days. (There is no shortage of motels and inns in the area -just be sure to reserve a room early.)

The world's largest concentration of sandstone arches is found in these parts -just outside of Moab in Arches National Park.


The temperatures in Moab's canyon country range from a cool December and January to a hot July and August.

Here's an example of average temperatures:

January- Day 41F/5C, Night 17F/-8C
May- Day 82F/28C, Night 48F/9C
July/August- Day 98F/37C, Night 63F/17C
October- Day 73F/23C, Night 39F/4C
December- Day 44F/7C, Night 20F/-7C

As you can see, the temps vary from night to day, as well as from low valleys to high mountains.
Most of the rainfall happens in March and April and winter months yield a few inches of snow in the valleys. The high mountains get enough snow to cushion winter sports.

The Colorado River freshens the reddish surroundings. (It flows wider, swifter, and clearer in parts not pictured here.)

Coming and going through the highlands. The aspen and oak trees color the scenery from spring to autumn.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Grosse Point Lighthouse

Just outside of Chicago, IL, in idyllic Evanston, a beacon stands overlooking Lake Michigan.
Grosse Point Lighthouse was built in 1873 to stop ships from wrecking as they approached Chicago's shores in the at-parts shallow waters. 

Photography by the talented Mia K

The optic lens is the largest used on the Great Lakes and sheds light as far as 21 miles. The first beam was sent out on March 1, 1874. The original setup included keepers' quarters and a passageway to the fuel storage. Later on, two fog signal buildings and a separate fuel supply facility were added.

It took three keepers and a day laborer to keep things running. To be a lighthouse keeper -such a romantic notion!
In 1923, when electricity was added, the lighthouse could do with just two keepers.
But after the installation of a photoelectric device in 1934, no more staff was needed. 
(Maybe a pretend keeper could live there  -you know, like they do on historic farms!)

The pathways are enchanting. We were tempted to stroll about for the rest of the day.

So perfectly poetic!

The Light Station grounds are open for free-of-charge looking all year. 
For a small fee tours can be arranged from May through October, and by the Park District June-September on Saturdays and Sundays. 
As part of the tour why not climb the 141 steps to the top of the light tower, where you can touch the sky!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Welcome 2013!

molten pewter fortunes for the New Year -a Finnish tradition 

A New Year Has Begun.

Stepping over the threshold into 2013, I thought I'd bring a couple of new features to my blog. I'm pretty excited about them. Click under LABELS to transport yourself to posts that catch your interest. 
Tales of Travel, Seasonal MeanderingsFrom my studio, and Local Treasures will take in new material as the year unfolds to add to posts I've already created in 2012.

Guest Posts and Global Living are new! I can't wait to share with you stories of creative souls and styles from different corners of the world! I think you'll be delighted!

Our New Year's celebration was international: We attended a Brazilian party with loads(!) of food and joyous dancing. The only "white chick" there, my dance moves were less than fluid and frankly quite amusing, but I was only met with enthusiasm and encouragement. Gotta love my Latin sisters!

For the last part of the evening we got together with our Finnish friends and watched a concert on TV until the Ball Drop started ("live" with a two-hour delay) from New York City's Time Square. Toasts and a kiss at midnight completed our traditional celebration.

How did you say goodbye to the old year and ring in the new?