Chronicles of the #CaliforniaDrought 10

We are on a ROLL!

From the Reno National Weather Service Facebook page:


As of January 20th: “California’s Lake Oroville reservoir has risen nearly 26 feet in the past 12 days”

“Shasta Lake came up 22 feet on pace to hit 90 percent or higher by Memorial Day.”

We’re stiDrought-1ll conserving water from hand washing, warming up the hot water and cooling off the cold. We then pour this water in the toilet tank after a flush. This practice has been building up my right arm muscles and probably core muscles too, as I lift and pour a bucket that sometimes has five gallons of water!


I spent all day yesterday working on images. Here are two that I did.

Bodie California
Bodie, a California ghost town

The third one is in my newsletter (which you can sign up for on my website if you want updates about my books, recipes, and giveaways).

What are your goals this week?

Chronicles of the #CaliforniaDrought 7 and National Novel Writing Month

Great news! We don’t have to drink eight glasses of water a day.

That should help with the drought, not to mention that water-logged feeling that drinking way more water than we really want causes, at least for me! Plus, our water is tasting like, for lack of a better word, mud.

Even better news, it poured rain for five and a half hours here this morning. Poured. And it’s snowing in the Sierras. I hope the lake level starts to rise.

Here is the photo I sent in for Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness challenge this week. The subject is clouds. This is a cloudy day in Squaw Valley, which is near Lake Tahoe. I took this photo in August 2014, and just made it monochrome for the challenge.

Mountains in cloud
Squaw Valley California

The National Weather Service had a long video about the effects of El Nino, and the conclusion was inconclusive. Apparently, the warm waters off the US western coast do not guarantee a lot of precipitation, BUT, things are looking very positive with this storm. Maybe the “storm door” has opened? We received about .75 inch of rain. I think 17 is California’s normal average. With the drought it has been down around 5, so that gives you some perspective.

I can’t complain about the rain stopping right when I had to venture outside today to meet writing friends for a birthday lunch and writing session. Lucky me!

It’s National Novel Writing Month. If you are a writer, sign up. It’s awesome. For example, here’s something from the Inspiration tab:

Writing stories is hard work. Don’t let your friends or family tell you any different. From the outside, it looks like sporadic tapping on the keyboard, distracted sips of coffee, and long stares out the window. But inside, you’re wrestling demons.

Gene Luen Yang, an author and artist whose graphic novels include American Born Chinese, Boxers & Saints, and The Shadow Hero.

This is the first time I’ve officially done NaNo, signed up and everything, yet two times I’ve written 50k in November with my co-author, John Holland. (We have written a middle-grade fantasy novel and a sci-fi novel together.) So why not just sign up already? This year I did it. It’s not hard at all to sign up and figure it out, and you can have buddies. It’s fun.

Do you have any major goals that you are working on this month?

Squaw Valley tram ride

DSC04523Today we rode the aerial tram to the top of the mountain in Squaw Valley. This is a different tram than the one I rode growing up. It’s smaller and doesn’t swing as much when it goes over the towers, which is great. I guess they thought it was time to stop sending people sprawling. I never saw that happen, but it must have sometimes.

The top of the tram is called High Camp.


There were a lot of people because today it’s Labor Day weekend. People were walking along the trails enjoying the amazing views and somewhat hazy mountain air.


We saw a few variety of bees on the wildflowers.


Here is one shot of Lake Tahoe I took from High Camp. Tomorrow we’ll take some close ups of Lake Tahoe.


Tomorrow we’ll do some closeups of the lake.