Friday, December 25, 2009

Holiday Greetings!!!! And the Answers to My Confusing Quiz :)


Christmas Greeting 2009
Sending everyone some warmth from our side of the globe. When most of the country perhaps are being hammered by winter storm, we are enjoying a beautiful "golden" Christmas here in San Diego. The picture above was taken last night, it may be a typical "San Diego" evening, but it is special for me since I took it at Christmas eve. I was actually thinking of making some Christmas greeting picture. However, while I was looking into my winter wonderland pictures, they just did not inspire me to make them my greeting picture. Somehow, it felt cold, and I wanted to make a warm greeting with a typical San Diego touch. Though I have lots of sunset pictures by the sea, but then, I wanted one that is the most recent, so, off to the ocean we went to take a most recent for "Christmas greeting" sunset picture. The one above was the picture I finally settled to make a Christmas greeting among 163 pictures I took :) Here are some more pictures from yesterday.
La Jolla Cove
The picture above is looking North East from the La Jolla Cove. Part of the cliffs that you see at the other side is Torrey Pines State Reserve, you probably see or hear often about Torrey Pines from me in this site. Torrey Pines is to Betchai as probably Cerok Tokun is to Rainfield :) . However, I decided to just simply stroll at La Jolla yesterday because of its proximity to REI since we needed to buy some items from them. Resting on the rocks that you can see below are sea lions, they kept on barking as if singing some "Christmas" song. Winter is pupping season, so you can see here a mom and pup pair, sweet!
Sea Lions
How I wish I know some clip-art, so that I could make one cool Christmas greeting by the ocean, Santa is probably riding a kayak, with the sea lions probably navigating Santa around. However, that is one aspect that I still have to learn. Ratty should watch out if I get to learn how to do that, and my sea lions can become reindeers too like his cute squirrels! Check out Ratty's Christmas post, the Christmas greeting he made with the squirrels as reindeers is really cute!
Walking west from La Jolla Cove is the Children's Pool. If la Jolla cove is to sea lions, the Children's Pool is to harbor seals.
Harbor Seals Resting on shore @ Children's Pool
I probably have written a lot also about harbor seals and sea lions, you can check out my mother's day's post about A Mother Seal's Love here. This is where I shot the Christmas greeting picture I made in the first picture above, only that I was shooting at the opposite direction of these harbor seals. The opposite side of the picture above is looking West, where the sun sets. Whereas, that picture above with the harbor seals is looking East. Here are some more pictures from the vantage point where I shot the harbor seals and the Christmas greeting pictures above.

Christmas Eve Sunset 2009, La Jolla
this was the other greeting card I made
( the 2 rocks you see above are the same 2 rocks in the Christmas Eve 2009 picture, just shot at different angle )
 this shot is almost similar to the Christmas greeting picture I chose above, just wider angle
and this is the beach ( or little cove) at the other side of the rock in the above picture
If it is probably summer, there would be a lot of people in this beach. Though there were still some who gets into the water without wet suits, but I believe they are visiting tourists. For San Diegans, 50s F ( or in the 10s C ) is way too cold to get into the water! I only take a swim and boogie board when it is late summer.

My many thanks to those who joined my kind of fun in my last post and guessed for the answers. I really appreciate your comments and your answers. Especially hearing from Icy, Ratty, Rainfield , Melissa and Rochelle, who I believe had been following since this site started :) But, it is not their fault if they did not get all four correct answers, after all, I posted confusing pictures. The microclimate weather in California makes it even more confusing, when the beaches don't get snow and shows warmth, the mountains and the higher elevation desert are totally different! This is where you probably can enjoy both snowkiing and snowshoeing in the mountain slopes and surfing at the beach in one day.

Here are the answers:

Picture A - @ North Lake, Bishop, California. Picture taken November 25, FALL
Ratty, Rainfield, Rochelle, Liss and AVCr8teur got this one correct. Though the lake is already frozen, but there is too little snow yet on the slopes, at this time of the year, the place must have several feet of snow already.

Picture B. @ Big Sur, Califirnia. Picture taken April 7th, SPRING.
At first, only Rochelle guessed this right, but then, she changed her answer from spring to summer, so now, no one got this correct :) I actually purposely chose this one to camouflage as the summer picture, like what Karen said, because of the fog :) But then, the last summer I was in this place, I did not see any at all, because of the very thick fog, it was like I was walking up in heaven, all clouds! all white stuff!

Picture C. @ Lassen Volcanic National Park, CA. Picture taken June 22, summer!

No one got this correct. Though this looks like a winter picture, but then, the clue here is the trail is open for hiking :) Starting November, or sometimes October, the trail here closes for hiking but is open for snowshoers, and opens again middle or late of June, or sometimes, even July, when the trail can at least be already defined. The place gets very thick snow accumulation in the winter ( several hundreds inches ) that even in the summer where the temperature has already warmed up, there are still a lot of snow left covering the slopes. Though this picture looks cold, but I believe, it was colder last night when I took the sunset pictures without the snow :)

Picture D. @ Toothrock, Poway, San Diego County. picture taken March 7, Winter!
Again, no one got this correct! But a lot were close enough, since March 7 is so close to March 21st, the official start of spring. This probably is really the most deceiving picture of all the pictures above! Along the coast, and the other lower elevation places in California, spring comes early, the hillsides especially along the Southern California coast explodes already starting February! Whereas at the higher elevation, or the mountain sides, the wildflowers peak usually July or even August, which is summer. But then, for me, I call this already, SPRING, if not for the allergies it brings, this could be my favorite time of the year, when life abounds everywhere! Probably the best time to observe wildlife, not only wildflowers.

Again, many thanks everyone for joining the fun and guessing with me :)

We'll be off to LA today, and then, we'll be up in the mountains tomorrow.
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  1. lovely! love the sea lions.Merry Christmas!

  2. Wow, I missed your quiz. I'm sorry, I thought I was keeping up with your posts, betchai. Merry Christmas to you. Love the card.

  3. Beautiful photos for greeting cards, betchai! They are very warm looking to me.

    Woo, I didn't get any of those pictures right :-)

  4. hahaha i shouldn't have changed my answer. merry Christmas,Betchai and a happy new year! From my family to yours. =)

  5. well I got it totally wrong but it was a fun quiz.

    I hope you had a merry Christmas

  6. Merry Christmas! :)

  7. I love the pictures, but did not even try to guess any thing.
    Merry Christmas to you.

  8. Failed to solve a blogger's problem for the whole day, then landed slightly late at your side.

    Wow!!! It is a "warmth" post for Christmas.

    "We'll be up in the mountains tomorrow", see you there.

  9. Your quiz was hard, but fun! I should have known that the wildflowers were winter as spring blooms start early here in Tucson also. Happy New Year!

  10. I was always a safe player. I knew I will not guess anything right so I opted to make some alibis... lol. I was amazed at the winter photo which is actually summer season. It's simply amazing how God works... you will never guess it. Just like life, you never know what to expect. Happy New Year.

  11. Hi Bets, happy holidays! After all antibiotic and cough syrup, I am feeling better. Late this may be, we are extending the best of the holiday season to you and your family!
    I was almost close to the poppies.

    May you enjoy the rest of your holiday break and wishing you a bountiful and prosperous new year!

  12. You took amazing pictures of the ocean, and the colors are incredible.

    Have a great Holidays!

  13. A beautiful series of photos, the water looks so pretty and the sea lions are lovely, the field of poppies is also pretty. These grow as weeds in the river beds and in our gardens, in my area.

  14. betchai I am so glad you had a peaceful, and warm Christmas. We too were warm, but we awoke to tornado warnings. Thank goodness we didn't get any, and the day went smooth, and calm.

  15. u r right it is more pleasant to see yr warm shots than ice n cold shots. merry xas and a swell yr ahead

  16. I knew I was wrong with the quiz because I remember that the picture with those flowers was taken some time other than summer, which is what I chose for them.

    Your sea lions would make excellent reindeer. I love sea lions. All I did with my squirrels was use Paint Shop Pro to copy them from one image and then paste them into the other. I drew a selection around them as close as possible. It was actually kind of easy.

  17. betchai, first, your photos as always = phenomenal. Isn't it wonderful to be living in California where the winter's look like summers to most people? Have a Happy New Year my friend xoxo

  18. u have such a lovely xmas post makes me curious how u will blog for the coming new years day :)

  19. HI Betchai, belated Christmas wishes! I've been off the whole Christmas break so only now I get to hop again. Thanks for your greetings too! I might have missed most posts here during the holidays but I am happy to see and have a glimpse of your beautiful photos again! Take care!!

  20. That's very beautiful sunsets betchai :) Have a safe and enjoyable trip on the mountain

  21. good to view your photoblog again, beth! keep it up. happy new year!

  22. These pictures are so beautiful, just going back on some of the older post you had. :-)