Sunday Stills: A Solstice #Sunrise-Sunset

Sunday, June 20th marks the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. What a perfect week to show off our sunrises and sunsets!

But First, The Solstice!

If being celestial two weeks ago wasn’t enough “geek” for you science buffs, let’s talk about the solstice.

The word solstice is derived from the Latin sol (“sun”) and sistere (“to stand still”), because at the solstices, the Sun’s declination appears to “stand still”; that is, the seasonal movement of the Sun’s daily path (as seen from Earth) pauses at a northern or southern limit before reversing direction.

Wikipedia

It’s hard to believe we will lose two minutes of daylight a day in the northern hemisphere for the next six months as we head into Autumn and Winter. As the southern hemisphere experiences their winter solstice Monday, folk down-under will gradually see two extra minutes of daylight each day.

After years of living in both Southern and Northern California, I got used to summer nights lasting until 8:45pm or so, with first light around 5:30am. One year I spent the 4th of July celebration with my Dad in the town of Alturas, in the most northeast corner of California. The fireworks didn’t start until 10:30pm when it finally got dark! As much as I thought that was impressive, Spokane (Nine Mile Falls), WA, sees 16 hours of official daylight on the summer solstice.

Image screenshot from Weather Underground App

You can google more information here if you are interested in seeing your own daylight hours.

There is also something called “Civil Twilight,” where light begins or remains in the sky before the sun rises or sets. Spokane’s begins as early as 4:10am and the light in the sky ends at 9:35pm, that’s about 6.5 hours of darkness. I know many of you live in more northern latitudes (Alaska, Canada, Sweden, etc) and it would be interesting to know what your sunset time will be on the solstice.

For you in the southern latitudes, what time did the sun go down on this cold winter day?

The construction crew is slowly building the polebarn/shop. This was taken at 10:00 pm a few days ago. Still a lot of light in the sky, enough to hide the stars.

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”

John Steinbeck

And so the world turns.

Now that all the science is out of the way, how do you celebrate the solstice? In my world, and for this week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme, we will simply enjoy sharing our favorite sunrises and sunsets.

The Heat is On

Similar to our experience with the summer solstice is the heat that comes with enjoying what summer brings. Marsha at Always Write challenges us this week with “heat” for her Writers Quotes Wednesday Writers Challenge. Marsha has a series of hilarious quotes you don’t want to miss. I found a few of my own to share. But I thought this one seemed appropriate since we just read about daylight hours.

“One benefit of Summer was that each day we had more light to read by.”

Jeannette Walls, The Glass Castle

“Dear weather, stop showing off… We know you’re HOT!!!”
“I’m glad it’s finally hot enough to complain about how hot it is.”

Authors Unknown
Weathered sun

And with Summer’s Heat Comes…

To me sunflowers are a wonderful representation of all things “sun.”

red gold sunrise sunflower

The sunflower’s name comes from its tendency to reposition itself to face the sun. It’s genus, Helianthus, is rooted in two Greek words — “helios” meaning sun and “anthos” meaning flower. Here is really great article about sunflowers if you want more information…

I miss my sunflowers, the ones I planted from seeds back in my former home in Sacramento. I spent hours taking photos over three summers. I even got great close-ups of bees seeking pollen!

As I’ve mentioned before, I now live in Eastern Washington where sunflowers and their close cousins, coneflowers, grow wild on our property among the pine trees and lupines.

As always, my sunflowers are shared for Cee’s Flower of the Day!

Ready for Some Sunrises?

It has been a few years since we visited Baja Sur, Mexico. We typically went in late December and early January. Sunrise was at 7:00 a.m. and I made sure I set my alarm to enjoy the spectacular sunrises over the Sea of Cortez. A real treat to see the sunrise over the ocean instead of the sunset expected on the US West Coast over the Pacific Ocean.

Sunrise over Sea of Cortez
Sunrise over Sea of Cortez
A sunrise brings a new day and a renewed chance of happiness.

How About Some Sunsets?

A sunset over the Sacramento River Delta never failed to inspire.

Clouds and waves combined with a sunset provide lovely textures in nature

After a warm, windy session windsurfing, sometimes a sunset sail is the most memorable.

Summer Sun sets on windsurfer getting the last bits of wind.

“Wind is God’s way of balancing heat.”

Author Unknown

Or how about a sunset in the Yosemite high country?

Half light of Tuolumne Meadows sunset

Turn around and even better, alpenglow appears on the opposite horizon from the setting sun!

Alpenglow Yosemite Tuolumne Meadows
Unlike the direct sunlight around sunrise or sunset, the light that causes alpenglow is reflected off airborne precipitation, ice crystals, or particulates in the lower atmosphere. source

A look at my world during the summer. Linking to Lens-Artists challenge “World.”

In case you need ideas, consider sharing anything anything related to sunrises and sunsets: sunflowers, glow, lighthouse, brilliance, alpenglow, dusk, twilight, dawn, rooster crowing, Stonehenge, stone circles, sun god, ancient myths, etc.

In the Pink Blogger Links

Color challenges seem to be waayyy popular! Bloggers shared 17 links just on Sunday alone with a grand total of 33 by Saturday! Thank you for your continuing support and I hope to see a lot more for this week’s prompt!

I am also “sharing my snaps” over at Denyse Whelan’s blog this Monday!

I’ll sign off with this image of me from 2019 enjoying a very boozy sunset Mai Tai at the Bali Hai restaurant in San Diego in Fall 2019.

Terri enjoying a beverage at Bali Hai

Next week, we explore the Great Outdoors (June is Great Outdoors month somewhere). I will share a sneak peak perspective of Becky B’s July Squares: Trees.

Enjoy the solstice and have a wonderful week ahead!

© 2021 Copyright—All rights reserved—secondwindleisure.com

Sunday Stills: #Fog at My Feet, Head in the #Clouds

lenticular clouds over delta

January has usually been a month where it feels like my head is either in a fog or UP in the clouds. So far this year, with so much going on with our move to Washington, I feel slightly unmotivated and a little out-of-sorts. I have a lot to look forward to and I am very eager to get on with our new life here. Even a cloudy, snowy day is beautiful to me.

Winter in Spokane

I won’t let the BIG events cloud my motivation. Despite the hope of a historical, US presidential inauguration, the potential for unrest and what feels like a never-ending pandemic has caused psychological harm to possibly millions of people. Who doesn’t feel brain fog these days?

Malibu Sunrise
Foggy morning in Malibu, California

For now, I will revel in what the month of January brings, usually cold weather, clouds and fog, and discover an ethereal and reflective beauty in the images.

Foggy river reflection
Foggy January day in the Sacramento Delta

“Some days your head is in the clouds. Every now and then, the clouds come down to ignite your creativity.”

Skye McNeil

And just to make it interesting, I’ve included a few of my favorite images of clouds and fog found in other seasons.

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.”

Rabindranath Tagore

A delta sunset sparks the imagination in late April.

Day is Done

Windy conditions at the Sacramento delta yielded an incredible variety of cloud formations, including this lenticular formation.

Lenticular Clouds

These ominous storm clouds brought wind to the delta.

Variety of textures in the delta

Lazy Clouds

I couldn’t resist re-posting this image of the wave-like clouds we saw a few years ago in the Mohave Desert.

Who says there are no ocean waves in the desert?
Crazy clouds along Route 66 near Victorville CA

These clouds at 4500 elevation in the Sierra Nevada Mountains were feeling lazy.

Clouds-Envelope-Hillside
Lazy Clouds

The Canada Goose family doesn’t seem to mind the foggy, overcast days as long as they can eat and swim. Submitted for Lisa’s Bird Weekly, Birds with Brown Feathers.

Ducks enjoy the river
Wild geese enjoy the foggy river

And just when you think you are too weary to care about much, Blue Angels soar high above us, a gift of hope as humankind demonstrates its capacity to defy speed and gravity .

Blue Angels Ascent
Blue Angels Soar into the Clouds

Sharing most images for Becky B’s SquaresUp.

I would love to see your fog and cloud images this week!

Camera graphic

© 2021 Copyright—All rights reserved—secondwindleisure.com

Sunday Stills: The Rise and Set of the Sun

Sun sets on Hilo Bay fisherman

Sharp-eyed bloggers may remember this theme offered by the now-defunct WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge a few years ago. I thought it would fun to challenge ourselves again by sharing our images of sunsets and sunrises as we celebrate yesterday’s solstice.

Winter Sunrise over swimming pool

“There’s a sunrise and a sunset every single day, and they’re absolutely free. Don’t miss so many of them.”

Jo Walton

I scoured years of images from my Dropbox files to find a variety of sunrises and sunsets. Apparently, I capture many more sunsets than sunrises. This time of year, in Northern California, sunrise comes quite early, 5:40am! I rise at about 6:30am most days in the summer. Sunset on the solstice was 8:33pm, with last light at 9:05pm. Plenty of time to capture sunsets.

To help inspire you, I’ve chosen new and previous images of sunrises and sunsets.

Sunrises

“The secret to a good morning is to watch the sunrise with an open heart.”

Anthony T. Hincks

How about a foggy Malibu sunrise to start your day?

Malibu Sunrise

I shared a version of this sunrise from Spokane, WA in February. This was post-edited with the Painnt app.

Pixelated Sunrise

Sometimes a sunrise looks best with its light shone on the subject and reflected in the windows as depicted in this sunrise in Baja, Mexico.

Sunrise in Baja Mexico

This one shows the sunrise in the Mojave Desert near Victorville, California. We stayed with friends at their home on Silver Lake. The countless ducks enjoyed feeding on insects common with the sunrise.

Mojave Desert Sunrise

Sunsets

“Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

My sunset images have a theme…they show the setting sun over water. The first photo is the Painnt version of a sunset in the Sacramento River Delta.

Delta Sunset Painnted

Another delta image shows us enjoying a sunset paddling session near the end of summer. Notice there were no wind turbines in the nearby hills then.

SUP Sunset

In this view of San Diego’s harbor, the setting sun highlights the downtown high-rise windows and creates a gentle reflection on the calm waters of the bay’s surface.

San Diego Harbor Sunset

The final image is one of my favorites, from Hilo Bay on the Big Island of Hawaii. I called a similar image “The Lonely Fisherman.”

Sun sets on Hilo Bay fisherman

I used LightRoom to edit the lighting in this photo and added a sunflare in the post-editing process.

To sum up the idea of Rise/Set, I offer this quote by John Muir:

“This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never all dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.”

Did you know the WordPress Weekly Challenge Photo pages are still available to view? Here is the link to 2018’s Rise/Set.

Does a sunrise or sunset bring you a quiet moment? I’m pleased to link this post to the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, A Quiet Moment.

What is your favorite time of day? Does the sunrise kick start your day and provide you with inspiration? Or are you an evening person who chooses to linger over a sunset with an adult beverage? Saturday’s solstice meant you had to be up very early or stay up rather late to see the sunrise or the sunset. Did you see both?

If you enjoyed seeing sunrises and sunsets, you might like these previous post:

I can’t wait to see your favorite sunrises and sunsets!

Camera graphic

© 2020 Copyright-All rights reserved-secondwindleisure.com

Sunday Stills: #Daylight Hours

Day is Done

Today marks Daylight Saving Time in North America and 81 other countries in the world. We “spring forward” in March and lose that precious hour of sleep in order to get more daylight in the afternoon.

Quote coffee
Original photo by Lexi Ruskell on Unsplash

I preferred DST to begin in April and end in October like it used to. It is so dark in the mornings!

As a result, I feel that hour difference for as long as 4 weeks. Even my dogs look for their dinner when the sunlight hits the sky at a certain angle.

DAYLIGHT is this week’s theme for Sunday Stills.

Enough complaining though…let’s celebrate daylight with some fabulous photos!

There is nothing like starting the day with a glorious sunrise!

Sunrise over Sea of Cortez
Sea of Cortez, in Baja Sur, Mexico

Daylight casts shadows…

Shadow of the dog walker
Long shadows, short dog!

Aero casts a shadow and a reflection!

Aero cavorts on dog beach accompanied by his shadow and reflection
Aero loves the beach!

How about a sunset paddle?

sunset paddle session
Sun sets on stand-up paddlers on the Sacramento River in the Delta

Daylight would not be complete without a beautiful sunset!

Day is Done
Spring delta sunset

The sunset on the wind turbines is my entry to Becky B’s March Spiky Squares.

Please share your original images, poems, favorite quotations, and more that depict what daylight means to you.

And if it applies, I hope you remembered to set your clocks forward (yes, I have several manual clocks that need to be re-set). Enjoy the daylight!

signature

Sunday Stills: #Lazy Days of Summer

Take time to relax

We are almost at the midpoint of August which means for many, summer is nearly over. Sure the weather will still be warm in the northern hemisphere, and maybe too hot on the West Coast (the wildfires aren’t helping matters), but school starts for many youth, teens and young adults in mid- and late-August!

The featured image above shows a strong leisure ethic in a college student the very first day of classes a couple of years ago.

Educators like myself are undoubtedly putting the finishing touches on course and classroom preparations, marking a clear end to the “lazy days” of summer which happens to be our theme this week for Sunday Stills. I know several students who are already back to school!

I remember as a kid growing up in San Diego, that we did not go back to school until the second week of September, well after the traditional Labor Day holiday. We did not get out for the year until mid-June, but my definition of summer always seemed like June through August to me.

Did you have time for some laziness this summer? I think I had more than my share after experiencing a crazy-busy spring. I took the whole month of June off where I didn’t do any course prep. I managed to write a few thousand words into my No Excuses Fitness book project, but I indeed felt lazy overall.

It didn’t help that we opened a Netflix account in May. Now both my hubby and I see the Millennials’ appeal of binge watching new and old movies or new-to-us Netflix series a couple of hours a night. However, that practice will need to be reigned in by early September!

Luckily my new Fitbit Charge 2 (not an ad) nags me every hour to get some steps in, so the appearance of laziness will stay in my own head!

I still have two more weeks before I step foot onto the college campus, so until that day arrives, I plan to experience a few more lazy days, now counted in just a few hours.

Here are my photo interpretations of “Lazy Days.”

I’ve been a little lazy capturing delta sunsets this summer. How perfect on a hot summer evening that the sun seems to rest a while among the wind turbines.

sunset among the windturbines 

Still obsessed transfixed with my backyard sunflowers, I captured the lazy opening of these petals on a newly-bloomed sunflower.

lazy opening of sunflower petals
Opposite of lazy? This bee on the same sunflower is heavily laden with sunflower pollen, giving “busy bee” a whole new meaning!

Busy bee is anything but lazy

All the photos in today’s post were captured by my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.

How do you like to spend your lazy days?

If you are on Instagram and have some sunflower shots to share, please join me for the rest of August using hashtag #monthofsunflowers

Link here or share in the comments!

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Sunday Stills: Can You Capture the #Wind?

Windy clouds at sunset

Today’s Sunday Stills theme challenges you to capture the wind! Wind is a very broad theme which is open to much interpretation.

Like last week, I challenge you to get creative with your photography or other projects! Perhaps you captured the wind in a poem, a song, a quote. I’m sure there are hundreds of songs with “wind” in the titles.

This is one of my favorite quotes.

“The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” William Arthur Ward

We can only see the effects of wind, whether it’s a gentle breeze fluffing a bird’s feathers, or hurricane force winds ripping piers from their docks, or clouds scudding across the sky blown by the beginnings of a storm.

The featured image above shows wind’s effect on the clouds and the ever-present wind turbines.

Wind plays a big part in my life since I became a windsurfer in 2009. The wind is ALWAYS the topic of conversation from April through September in our household and at the delta as every windsurfer I know checks their wind meters, their weather apps or asks if there will be enough wind for sailing.

When it’s a BIG day, it looks like this.

windsurfer getting air

Brodie loves the wind and waves. You can tell it’s windy by his flapping ear!

Wind blowing dog's ear

I manage to have good days windsurfing. Just last week hubby caught me coming off the water with a big smile on my face after 45 minutes of fun in the wind.

Smiling Windsurfer bringing in her windsurf gear

Did you know my logo for Second Wind Leisure represents stylized sails in an abstract “W”? A graphic artist friend created this for me years ago when I started blogging, and for my website Windigen Consulting (which is German for wind).

I’m looking forward to what your interpretation for WIND!

Link up here with your post! I share all posts on my Second Wind Leisure Facebook page, on Twitter and on Flipboard.



 

Inspiration of a Morning Sunrise

Winter Sunrise over swimming pool

Winter Sunrise over swimming pool

There is nothing like a gorgeous sunrise to kick-start one’s day into full motion (perhaps with some caffeine to help it along)!

WordPress posted the theme Rise/Set for the weekly photo challenge.

I am a photo addict of sunrises and sunsets, so I couldn’t pass this one up while on my continuing blogging break. The timing was perfect to coincide with the publishing of my new page.

I am happy to announce that fellow blogger and photographer, Aixa from MuchoSpanish, and I have each published pages for the Sundays Stills photo challenge as we introduce this new feature. Aixa will be my co-host for the feature which will also be a continuing link-up.

Please click here for more information!

Photo credit goes to my hubby who took this photo while at work last winter at one of the public swimming pools he services. Talk about a great inspiration to the workday!

Happy Easter to those who celebrate!

Photographing the Textures of Our Lives

Clouds and waves combined with a sunset provide lovely textures in nature

Variety of textures in the delta

A late spring storm paints beautiful textures in the sky, the water and the land.

“A subtle amount of texture attracts the eye.” Clyde Aspevig

As the weekly photo challenge suggests, Textures in photography feed our tactile perceptions.

Clouds and waves combined with a sunset provide lovely textures in nature

A delta sunset captures textures in the sky and water.

medical splint shows textures

The textures of this splint on my wrist and hand right now are hiding the textures of a huge bruise and fractured metacarpal on my right hand. I tripped and fell while walking my dogs, Brodie and Aero.

No more windsurfing or stand-up paddling for the rest of the season.  Maybe now I can get some writing done–I can still use my fingers to type.

My signature

Peachy Sunset

Peachy-Sunset

For Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, the theme is Peach or Apricot.

Here is a peachy sunset for your pleasure today!

Peachy-Sunset

This is a photo of the sunset over the Sacramento River delta looking northwest.

After a fun day windsurfing, exhausted sailors enjoy an adult beverage with a spectacular view!

Rosy Sunset

Rosy sunset

Rosy sunset

This un-retouched photo (except for cropping) depicts a sunset with a rosy glow. I took this photo at the Sacramento delta late last summer as a storm front moved through, which gave us a beautiful show!

I am posting this photo today for two photo link-ups: Julia’s Red Page: Camera Lucida and Lucile de Godoy’ The Clinic Photo 101 Rehab. 

Both bloggers participated in Photography 101 and cannot get enough! If you are looking for photography challenges and want to link and share your photos with your fellow bloggers, then check out these two blogs!

Stormy Sunset: Sunday Stills

Thunderstorm

Thunderstorm

Friday night in Northern California was alive with thunderclouds, lightning and spectacular sunsets. I captured this from the top of the levee on Sherman Island in the Sacramento delta. This scene looks northeast toward Sacramento (an hour’s drive). Friends in town said there was lots of lightning, thunder and enough rain to get cars good and dirty.

Just to the west, looking toward the San Francisco Bay area, the sky showed little activity except for the wonderful colors.

Sherman-Sunset

These conditions continued through Saturday and created epic conditions for some fabulous windsurfing.

These photos are shared on Ed’s Sunday Stills Challenge: Sunrise or Sunsets. Feel free to add your photo any time!

San Diego’s Pacific Beach and Downtown Skyline

San-Diego-Skyline

We are enjoying a short vacation in beautiful San Diego. Spent Sunday morning on Mission Bay, stand-up paddling with my husband, step-daughter and step-son.

Stand Up Paddling
Morning stand-up paddle session. Original image by V.Schrandt

After paddling we had lunch at a little Greek bistro, then walked over to Pacific Beach boardwalk.

Mission Beach Boardwalk
Cyclists cruise Mission Beach Boardwalk

Later we went to dinner in Point Loma at a wonderful seafood shop and experienced this unbelievable sunset that set downtown San Diego buildings aglow.

San Diego Skyline
Setting sun paints the buildings of downtown San Diego

Sunset on Sherman Island Marina

Sherman Island

Sunset on Sherman Island Marina
Sunset on Sherman Island Marina

Sherman Island, in the Sacramento River Delta, is a hidden paradise for boaters, picnickers, photographers, anglers and watercraft enthusiasts to enjoy. The small marina houses docks where boaters may rent short or long-term. RV parking and camping is also available.

The Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta is an expansive inland river delta and estuary in Northern California. The Delta is formed at the western edge of the Central Valley by the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers and lies just east of where the rivers enter Suisun Bay.

In late spring, as temperatures rise in the Central Valley, the famous delta breezes begin their summer visit, creating winds that eventually cool the night air in Sacramento and other cities. Because of this climactic phenomenon, Sherman Island is an internationally known windsurfing and kite-boarding area, and is extremely popular with locals and visitors that travel from Northern California and the San Francisco Bay area.

Join fellow bloggers for the continuing photography event: Photo 101: The Clinic, hosted by Lucile de Godoy.

Serene Sail Salute

As the sun set on the Sacramento River Delta, we held a memorial service in honor of a fellow windsurfer who passed away after a long illness.

We laid our windsurf sails down in salute along the levy where we launch as a testament to his life.

A windsurfer contemplates the moment.

Serenity before the memorial service
Serenity before the memorial service

Serenity