Monday, August 27, 2007

3 from the Shedd

These guys have really big brains. They must -- why else would they need such big foreheads?

These fish have really big brains. Really!

This lizard was VERY interested in what was going on outside the tank; he kept swimming back and forth, looking at all of us looking at him.

Lizard checks out the tourists

Most of the little kids were excited when they spotted a Nemo fish, but I got excited when I saw Dory!

Just keep swimming, just keep swimming

"Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..."

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Severe Weather 2007

We were hit with "severe weather" this Thursday, with 80-mile-an-hour winds and torrential rains. The northern suburbs where I live took some of the hardest hits, so much so that two days later many blocks are still without power and most of the trees haven't even been cleaned up yet. To my New England eyes, it looks like the aftermath of a hurricane, although that's not what they're calling it. Whatever it was, it was a doozy. Lots of pictures follow!

Look at the size of this tree that was brought down by the wind. We think it was because the ground was so saturated with water, the roots had nothing to hold onto and it couldn't hang on. It took huge chunks of grass with it!

Look at the size of this one!

Luckily, there was little residual damage; the tree only fell on a large shrub wall and onto an empty street on the other side.

Luckily, this one only smooshed a shrub wall.

This is fairly typical on the sides of streets right now.

Typical on the streets right now.

Look closely at this next one: the roots are actually intertwined with cement blocks! Didn't help it withstand the wind, though.

Look closely, the roots are actually around cement blocks.

This time, the tree did damage.

This time, the tree did damage.

A LOT of damage.

If you had your car at this body shop, you are bumming.

If you had your car at this body shop, you are likely a very unhappy customer. Now it's in worse shape than when you brought it in!

Went to the body shop with a dented fender, came out much worse.

This one broke my heart. I love old cars!

Oh no!

Two days later, this is a typical side street.

Two Days Later, it's still a mess

But help is on the way!

Help is on the way.

I heard today that they are bringing in electric company workers from out-of-state to help. Good thing, we need it! According to the latest Village report, 6800 residents in Glenview still don't have power. (We're fine -- we even got our cable back up this afternoon. Whew, we missed the internet more than we thought we would!)

Although we are not near a river, we do have water issues. Techny Basin, a conservation area, handles the overflow of water during bad storms. This is what it looked like this morning.

Techny Basin II, post-storm

Luckily, I was also there last summer so you can see how it normally looks at this time of year.

Techny Basin II, pre-storm

Yeah, let's look at that again.

Now, after the "severe weather":

Techny Basin, post-storm

Before, on a normal summer day:

Techny Basin, on most days


We're as floored as you. I'm not sure if the depth comes across in the photo, but the bottom of the basin is probably twenty-five to thirty feet down -- and the bike path that travels around the edges of it is exactly one mile. That is a whole lotta water, people! (More on Techny Basin and the rain overflow here.)

But all is not doom and gloom. Our most favorite hotdog stand, fRedhots & Fries, is one of the many businesses in town without power. But that doesn't keep an ingenius man like Fred down -- he had an impromptu outdoor cookout today!

Not even no electricity will keep Fred down.

People loved the idea, and quickly lined up. Including my husband and me. :)

Fredhots improvises, the crowd approves.

The guys were working hard.

Fred and the Frites

People started coming from all over the place. Just in the short time we were there, they ran out of Polish! Hahaha.

So popular, they ran out of Polish sausage!

Leave it to good old fRedhots to make the day brighter.

Fredhots has a cookout!

Good old fRedhots.

So that's how my town looks now.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Lizards in Love

Lizards in Love

Or if not love, then in serious "like". :)

Taken at the Shedd Aquarium this weekend on a visit with my niece and sister-in-law. It was a ton of fun!

Monday, August 20, 2007

I love Chicago

Looking north up Lake Shore Drive

How many other cities can boast of a beautiful beach and waterfront literally right across the street? Not many!

Friday, August 17, 2007

A Friday Funny

I saw this at the World's Largest Block Party, which was pretty much just a big outdoor pickup bar, and I laughed and laughed and laughed.

It could be a thought bubble over the girl's head

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Three Desert landscapes

The desert plants make the most of monsoon season -- everything turns so green, and so fast!

Practically lush, for the desert

Octopus cactus

My aunt told me the name of these octopus-looking cactus, but I'm not sure how to spell it. Ocotilla?

Look like a movie set, but it's not!

Looks like a movie set, but it's not!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Sunset Through the Boughs

Sunset through the boughs

As seen from my aunt's front yard in Tucson. The rains stopped just in time for sunset.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The foothills of the Catalina Mountains

The foothills of the Catalina Mountains

Taken during my trip to Tucson a couple of weeks ago. It's my desktop photo of the moment -- feel free to click the photo to go to Flickr and download the largest size for your own desktop!

Monday, August 13, 2007

I'm still here!

Been busy settling into my new job, but I am still here!

Sunbeam on White Lily

There was something about the shadows and crispness of the white lily that intrigued me with this one.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Desert in the Morning Sun

Desert in the Morning Sun

Best viewed in large.

The sad news is, it's actually hotter and more humid here in Chicago than it was in the desert. That just doesn't seem fair!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Greetings from Tucson!

Greetings from Tucson!

This mailbox post cracked me up every day for the last four days. I'll have prettier pictures once I get home tonight, but I don't think I'll have funnier ones.