Sunday, April 30, 2017


A Bee's Feast

Bees, particularly honey bees, have been around for millions of years 
and are responsible for pollinating over a third of our food supply and 90% of wild plants. 

The dandelion, the bane of a lawn perfectionist, is one of the first available food sources in spring 
as bees and other pollinators emerge from hibernation. 
Each flower, in fact, consists of up to 100 florets, each one packed with nectar and pollen.

So remember, the dandelion you save, may feed the bees who may be pollinating part of your next meal.

Fortunately for the bees, I am not a lawn perfectionist, 
so the bees have a large swath of dandelions to feast upon in the early spring. 
And even when I do get around to mowing, the dandelions have been conditioned 
to lie low and avoid the mower.

Bees like honeysuckle, too, but apparently, the throats of many honeysuckle flowers 
are too deep for the honey bee to gather the nectar; 
however, I must have a smaller flowering variety that the bees like 
because they were out yesterday in abundance.

For more "Let's Eat!" photos by other CDP bloggers from around the world, click here.


Love the Earth
Climate March, April 29

Walla Walla is typically a conservative rural community as is most of Eastern Washington state. But because of the presence of Whitman College, a private liberal arts institution, and other attractive amenities in this small town of 35,000, there is a large group of progressively-minded folks. Enough so that +/- 300 men, women and children came together Saturday to march in the defense of climate change, the environment, and science.

The march went off with neither a hitch nor a disturbance as participants strolled peacefully along the sidewalks minding traffic lights and crosswalks with their signs and chants protesting the current administration's stance. 

I was particularly taken by the children as my concern and hence my participation is for my own grandchildren and the Earth which is on loan from them.

The event was co-sponsored by Divest Whitman and Walla Walla Progressives.

Thursday, April 27, 2017


Looking Back, Looking Forward
Sesquicentennial Sculpture 

In December 2012, through generous funding from the Donald and Virginia Sherwood Trust, ArtWalla gifted the bronze sculpture Looking Back, Looking Forward by local artist Squire Broel to the city of Walla Walla as part of their on-going public art project. The sculpture was commissioned to commemorate the Sesquicentennial anniversary (150 years) of the incorporation of the city of Walla Walla. In that same year (1862), President Abraham Lincoln signed the Homestead Act into law.

The sculpture references objects and structures that are relevant to the Walla Walla Valley such as a stalk of wheat, a feather, a fish, a wind turbine, an airplane wing, and more. According to the artist, the piece reflects on the impact that educational institutions, banking centers, and industrial development have had on the community of Walla Walla.

"The mask elements point to the process of refinement 
that takes place through community growth: 
simplicity moves toward complexity.

"The cosmic swirl or fingerprint references both the personal and the abstract:
there are always ideas that have yet to be formed, 
and there is also an indelible mark that each of us makes 
on the tapestry on our community.

"The ever-present eye gives recognition to ideas that are greater than ourselves.
It serves as a portal of light and a reminder that we must look back on our history 
as we also look forward to our future."

The base includes artifacts from the 150-year history of Walla Walla. 
They are made as replica castings and castings inspired by the original artifacts.

See if you can find the following: 
arrowheads; military buttons, belt buckle, and insignias all from Fort Walla Walla;
mule shoe; traditional school bell; precious metal ingots from Baker Boyer Bank; 
stones from Mill Creek; engraved brick from the China Building; 
and Sesquicentennial tokens.

In the words of the artist, 
"The sculpture, which is rooted in Walla Walla, offers many levels of engagement, 
and leaves open the possibility for news ideas and understanding."

Saturday, April 22, 2017


When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. 
When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence. 
--Ansel Adams  

Saturday, April 22, was the first outdoor event in the 2017 Learning on the the Land series
 organized by the Blue Mountain Land Trust. 
Under the practiced eye of local photographer Bill Rodgers and artist Leslie Cain, 
eager participants car-pooled through the rolling hills north of Walla Walla 
stopping at multiple sites to capture the beauty of spring time 
in the valley which we call home. 

All photos taken with the iPhone7+, using both the native camera and ProCameraHDR, 
and edited in Snapseed.

Thursday, April 20, 2017


Springtime at Heritage Park

Spring is always a lovely time in the valley, and the blue sky and tree blossoms cooperated
 to make this public art installation in the center of downtown Walla Walla especially appealing.

The history of this iconic landmark goes back to 1993 when the huge sandstone façade of the 1902 Odd Fellows Temple 
was saved from demolition and relocated to Heritage Park. 
In order to dismantle and move this massive structure, each art-carved stone was numbered, 
and a key was made so the stones could be put back in the exact same place. 

Over the next few years, the window openings were filled with colorful and permanent images 
of the different ethnic and cultural groups that populated the Walla Walla Valley between 1850 and 1950. 

This was the first major project of the Blue Mountain Arts Alliance, now known as ArtWalla.
 The Project Manager of the facade relocation was Rob Robinson 
with assistance from many local individuals and organizations. 

"The Odd Fellows Temple was the first major public building designed by architect Henry Osterman 
who later designed other Walla Walla buildings— 
Green Park School, Carnegie Library (now Carnegie Art Center), City Hall, 
the County Courthouse, the Die Brücke Building and the Liberty Theater."

"Many of Henry Osterman’s signature design elements can be seen on these buildings:
 rough stone around arches, Palladian symmetry, agricultural and fertility symbolism, and Dutch reformist style." 
(from ArtWalla Public Art Walking Tour and Coloring Book)

The historic and contemporary photographs were reproduced in porcelain enamel on steel panels. 
The Art Director for this project was local artist Jeanne McMenemy. 
She was assisted by research interns from Whitman College and Walla Walla University,
 and professional photographer, Hans Matschukat

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


Where's Cathy? (Continued)

A small-ish gathering of like-minded constituents of Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers 
made themselves visible to those who chose to pay $40 each to have lunch with District 5's representative. 
During the last Congressional recess, McMoRo chose to make herself available only to a chosen few supporters, 
avoiding an open town hall forum requested by many.

Earlier today she met with a hand-picked group of 12 local progressives, 
albeit nixing the name of the leader of Walla Walla's local Indivisible group, 
before lunching at noon with anyone willing to pay $40 towards her re-election campaign.

Welcome to Democracy 2017.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Tuesday, April 4, 2017


Maple Counter's Little Sister

Two years ago the Maple Counter Cafe, one of Walla Walla's premier breakfast restaurants, added a new member to their family--Maple Counter Waffle Company. Housed in a shiny aluminum food trailer with a snappy black and white awning, the Waffle Company took up residence in the empty space along Alder in between the parent restaurant and Marcy's on the corner. For two seasons they have served up freshly baked waffles in their al fresco dining room.

But just this week as the 2017 season begins, I noticed they've been spiffing up the place. The trailer which was originally located at the back of the space, has been moved to the front, and a new concrete tile patio has been installed along with a new black railing which defines the dining space onto the sidewalk. The move creates much improved curb appeal along with more seating for hungry customers. 

As can be seen here, construction is still in progress on a mini porch outside the door to the main kitchen. 

With so many waffle options, it's hard to make a choice.

But once you have decided, just step up to the window to place your order 
seen here reflecting the parent restaurant's sign on the side of the building next door.

The Maple tree logo adds a nice custom touch to the fencing as well as casts a lovely shadow.

The Waffle Company is open Saturday and Sunday from 8 AM - 1:30 PM.
Otherwise, the Maple Counter Cafe is open daily from 7 AM - 3:00 PM.

Monday, April 3, 2017


Artistic Interpretations of a Star Magnolia Flower

I have loved the art of Georgia O'Keefe since my Art History classes 
at the University of Washington in the early 70s, 
especially the close ups of her sensuous flower blossoms. 

Today, with the help of my iPhone camera and the creative app Prisma, 
I have created my own versions of a Star Magnolia blossom. 
Now I just have to learn to paint like Ms. O'Keefe.

Original color photo

Variation #1

Variation #2

Variation #3

Sunday, April 2, 2017


Studies in Black and White

Yesterday I posted these same photos of a Star Magnolia blossom in color. 
Here are the black and white variations. I like them both but for different reasons. 
How about you?

Saturday, April 1, 2017


Star Magnolia 

It's been a long cold, snowy winter in Walla Walla, with a record wet month of March. For the most part it's all good as we head into spring and summer with enough moisture in the mountains to stave off the drought conditions that threatened the valley in the past.  And with the memory of all that snow and rain still fresh, the blossoms of the early blooming Star Magnolia never looked more lovely.

For more photos of "Wet" by other City Daily Photo bloggers, follow this link: