life in the Southwest

All of My Faults Are Stress Related

Category archives for life in the Southwest

Go to Dave’s Landslide Blog for full details about this. I don’t have access to the paper. According to Dave Petley, there’s a new paper in Nature Geoscience about the Slumgullion landslide. Slumgullion is in my greater neighborhood – it’s in Colorado’s San Juan Mountains, between Lake City (former home of Alferd Packer) and Creede…

I’ve been trying to get some xeriscaping established this summer, and I’ve been very pleased with the plants that are growing. This one, Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, is supposed to become a groundcover, and it’s spreading quite well. But with the flowers have come some interesting pollinating… things… that I can’t identify. The leaves in the picture…

I’ve recently taken to using the magic of the internet to give my students access to readings, assignments, and images outside of class. It’s great – if my sophomores lose their map, they can print another one. If a student misses class, there’s no excuse not to do the homework anyway. If students can’t draw…

There was a mountain lion in the courtyard of a local elementary school playground today. A mountain lion. At the elementary school. A neighbor called the police, who called the Department of Wildlife, who shot the mountain lion. A young male, about 75 pounds, probably recently headed out on its own. Apparently that’s the age…

There’s a meme going around about plans for summer reading. While I was reading Sciencewoman’s list, I realized that I was avoiding the meme. See, I didn’t even manage to finish my spring reading list, so I’m not ready to talk about big plans for the summer. I had good intentions. I read Dirt: the…

I’m neck-deep in a five-week summer class, and spending my evenings reading for class prep and thinking about how to run discussions. So I’m on a blogging semi-hiatus, at least until I’ve got an hour or two free of other commitments. In the meantime, I’ll occasionally post some of my old favorites. This one was…

Signs of spring (?)

Last night, we were having another one of those incredible dust storms that have been blowing in this spring (and which may be decimating the spring snowpack). This morning, I woke up to this: I was happy to see it – it will melt by the end of the day, and will keep the soil…

Flowering aspen

I’ve been watching an aspen in my front yard this spring, and sending data to the National Phenology Network. (That’s phenology, the study of recurring plant and animals phases, not phrenology.) We’ve had warm weather, cold weather, and windy weather, and blooming violets, crocuses, and dwarf irises, but the aspens haven’t done much. Until now.…

My husband and I both had goals for our visit to the Grand Canyon at the beginning of this week. He wanted to give himself a workout that would leave him feeling sore all week. I wanted to check out the Trail of Time, an exhibit that some of my colleagues from New Mexico and…

Odd day to come back from vacation

It’s the Small Human’s spring break, which means all kinds of work-juggling. The family took off for four days and went to the part of Arizona which is not apparently being auctioned off on e-Bay to balance the state’s budget. It’s strange enough driving through eastern Arizona during daylight savings time – most of the…