Thanksgiving Break: Mammoth

The high Sierras in winter, even as early as the weekend before Thanksgiving, provide a variety of landscapes and views that are impossible to find in Southern California.

The crisp and cool mountain air, the bright sun, the wind in the tall grasses and trees, and the snow in the mountains . . . it reminded me of the many childhood Thanksgivings that I spent in the mountains around Lake Isabella, CA. As a boy, I often spent the time playing in piles of leaves in the front yard of my great-grandparents’ home or hunting and fishing (as I got older). Now, I spent much of the time in Mammoth amazed at the serene majesty and beauty of it all.

I’ve seen Mammoth in the summer a couple of times in recent years. However, nothing even comes close to Mammoth in winter.

Edit: I’m adding the link to the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge. I wrote the post before checking their site, only to realize that I had already posted photos that fit the challenge.

A Guest at the Door

When I got home from the grocery store, I found this little guy basking in the sun right next to our front door. He was even kind enough to stop and pose for a minute or two while I took some pictures. 

I hope you enjoy!

A Beautiful Morning

Since the time change this past weekend, I’m once again driving to work before sunrise. Yet, there is a silver lining to being up so early: being able to take photos like these. I captured them a few minutes apart when I arrived at work and noticed the vibrant oranges and reds in the morning sky. 

I hope you enjoy!

Anaheim Packing District

On Saturday evening, I went to the Anaheim Packing District with friends from my M.A. Program.

As the website indicates, it often has live music in the evenings, as well as several creative and tasty food, desert, and beer options. I took the following picture as I was crossing the street outside in the setting sun.

I hope you enjoy, both the photo and the Anaheim Packing District!

TJL: In Praise of Biased Educators

My newest post is up at The Justice Letters, which you can read here.

It is a short essay on education from my perspective as a high school teacher in America, who has taught for close to ten years, as well as my personal political perspective.

Let me know what you think in the comments here or on the TJL post itself. I look forward to hearing your thoughts. Also, check out the other amazing posts by my co-contributors.

Monarch Butterfly

Monarch Butterfly

A selectively colored picture of the Monarch Butterfly.

Morning Light


The rising sun when I got to work today. Though it still is winter technically, the increased heat lately and mornings like these have the life and fire of spring and summer stirring in my veins.

Selectively Colored Fallen Tree Roots

Partially Colored Tree Roots

Fallen tree near Devil’s Postpile in Mammoth, CA.

Half-Monochrome Mono Lake

Partially Monochrome Mono Lake

Mono Lake, partially in black and white and partially in color.

Unexpected Snow

When people talk about Southern California, one of the benefits they often mention is that you aren’t far from several different climates and recreational activities. Depending on where you are located, you may be an hour or less from the ocean, the mountains, and the desert. People from around here can sometimes brag that we have access to it all, but it is unusual for you to not have to drive to whatever destination you wish.

Last night, while I was nice and warm inside, we had, what sounded to me, like a pretty usual rainstorm with some pretty unusual high winds. There were times when I heard the wind more than the rain. So, imagine my surprise when I woke up this morning to a text from my roommate, “Hey, don’t know if you’re up or not, but at the end of the next street over, it snowed a bunch.” I’ve been fighting a cold for the past few days, but I know that I couldn’t miss an opportunity like this; it’s not often that snow falls at 1400-1500 ft above sea level in Southern California. Usually, if you want snow, you need to drive into the local mountains and go up a few thousand more feet. Normally, I would have to travel for a post like this, but not today; it was a White Christmas, sort of.

So, here are some of the pictures from this morning, taken in spots where I have taken other pictures for this blog. I hope you enjoy them!