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Today was my 2nd observation of the year & I can honestly say that I am satisfied. I did the absolutely best that I can, which is a good feeling. For a change, I’m not kicking myself for forgetting this or that. I pulled out every teaching strategy that could possibly fit with the lesson, and my students were 100% engaged the entire period (I was so proud of them).

I had not realized how much I enjoy getting out with my camera and posting my new images until lately when I’ve been too busy with work. Saturday, I went into the city park (no, not a pond with ducks, or trees and grass, but a small mountain with rocks and cactus). I must have been distracted, or maybe I’m a little tired of rocks and am longing for green grass, but I just didn’t connect with my subject (i.e., rock).

The setting sun adds dimension to these saguaro, sentinels of the Arizona desert.

The Arizona state flower is the saguaro cactus flower, but they won’t bloom for a few months. (They seem to like the ridiculously scorching temperatures.) The state tree is the Palo Verde, which is not in bloom yet. In fact, right now it looks like a bunch of green twigs on a smooth green trunk and just does not make a good picture (I tried). This mesquite tree was vibrant from the glow of the setting sun; however, by the time I’d parked and changed lenses, the angle of the sun had changed and the impact was gone.  However, I did capture some of the remaining light on the trunk.

The smooth trunk of a mesquite tree.

The mesquite survives in the desert because of its small leaves that take little water and thrive in the blistering summer sun.

New mesquite leaves