Campground Upcycled Art

We decided to hang out at the campground yesterday. While we were hiking the day before, I thought I noticed Mike limping a little bit. This morning, he was gimping around on his ankle pretty good. He broke his ankle many years ago, and sometimes it bothers him. It seemed like a good excuse to relax for the day. By afternoon, his ankle was quite a bit better, and so we got out for a walk.

We were having a problem with our furnace. The pilot light wasn't igniting, and so it wouldn't light the flame to produce heat. Mike was out fussing around with it, and fixed it by wiggling some wires. While he was doing that, I got Smitty out for a short walk. First, I carried him around to the far side of the trailer because I knew Mike's noise would freak out the cat. Once we got clear about the source of the noise, I carried him back to the other side of the trailer. He took a very short dust bath.

Then, he climbed back to the top step and started whining to go inside. Sadie came to the door to offer moral support.

It really didn't help though, and so I let him back in after just about 10 minutes.

He really just needed to get back to his grass for a nibble.

Sadie took her place on the top of the chair back for a lovely warm sunbath.

After that, I spent quite a bit of time on the second snowflake. I'm going to get this finished way too fast, and then I'll have to get back to the hand quilting, which isn't nearly as much fun.

When Mike's ankle was feeling better, we got out for a walk around the campground. In a previous post, I mentioned we were trying this place as an alternative to the national park. We have hook-ups here, and it was just $30 per night to stay, which is a pretty good price. The place is called Joshua Tree Lake RV Park and Campground.  We were skeptical about the lake, but it turned out to be a pretty nice spot. We believe it is man-made, rather than natural, but it was very nice.

There were a bunch of very tame ducks.

Near where we were standing were these mosaic benches.

As we walked around, we began to notice upcycled art everywhere. It appears an artist lives on the property next door, and possibly the two properties are related. In any case, we really enjoyed looking at the art work here.

The artist(s) had made use of all sorts of pieces of junk and collectibles.

Tic Tac Toe, anybody?

I loved this next one...a quilt made of wood. Wouldn't it be fun to try to piece this together with fabric?

There were interesting shelters of all kinds, and this would have made a nice picnic area for a day trip.

These were lanterns made from old milk cans.

Around the far side of the lake were some coots. I'm not sure what accounts for the flat spot on this guy's head.

And more art...this is an ocotillo cactus sculpture.

And then there was this interesting feature. This is the Joshua Tree Astronomy Arts Theater.

Peering in through the window there, it looks like this. We first thought it was a sort of outdoor theater.

As it turns out, they set up telescopes, and then project images onto the large screen there for the audience to enjoy.

You can read more about it right here. The "next event" listed on the website is for September 20th, and so I have an idea the website isn't up to date.

Walking on, we found a wooden saguaro cactus.

It had needles made from nails...sharp nails.

There was even a hole where a bird might take up residence, as they do in actual saguaro cacti.

Then there was this. The light wasn't very good here...

and so I took a close-up of what was over head.

This is the little "garden"...

that accompanied this little house. The house was about the size of a large dog house.

Finally, we came to the "sanctuary."

This was on the top of the sign.

Inside the "enclosure" was this "alter." No idea what this is meant to be.

Here are a few close-ups. This made me think of an owl in flight.

At the top was this:

There were two semi-circular benches with inlaid tiles.

The tiles were all different, but these were two I liked. There is a Marine Corps base nearby at 29 Palms, and so I wasn't surprised to see this, honoring the Marine Corps birthday.

This one looked like an itty bitty quilt.

That was the end of the art work. Back near the office was a free library with books and DVD's.

So that was our day. We finished off with the most beautiful sunset.

Day is done.

I wanted to finish up by telling you about the recipe I tried for dinner last night. this is one of our Cooking Light Diet recipes for Barbecue-Style Bourbon-Glazed Salmon with Firecracker Slaw. I didn't think to take a picture of ours, and so I borrowed the picture from the website.

This was so good and super easy. I've linked to the recipe back there, but I did it a little differently. For one thing, I used a bag of coleslaw mix, adding the green onion and the pepper. As for the chile, I think a Fresno chile would have knocked our heads off, and so I used a mild yellow chile pepper. It gave it a nice little kick without overpowering the dish.

As for the salmon, I wanted to roast it in the oven, and so I lined a rimmed baking sheet completely with foil, and did my marinating there. When the 15 minutes were up, I simply turned the salmon flesh-side up and then used a brush to brush it with more of the marinade. Then I roasted it for 15 minutes in a 400 degree oven. I basted it every five minutes with more of the sauce. I can't emphasize enough the importance of completely lining the baking sheet with foil because the marinade has quite a bit of brown sugar in it. It will turn to carbon in the oven and be a bugger to clean up. As it was, I just crumpled up the foil and tossed it away. If you want a non-alcoholic substitute for the bourbon, you can substitute 1 teaspoon of non-alcoholic vanilla for the 1 tablespoon of bourbon.

Okay, so this morning we're moving on to Hemet. We'll be in Hemet for the next two weeks. I'm hoping to get some sewing done while we're there. Also, have you seen that Crabapple Hill Studios is doing another sew-along project for International Embroidery Month in February? You can find the free download of pattern and instructions right here. I had so much fun with this last year, I'm really happy she's going to do it again. I'll need to purchase some supplies since I didn't anticipate this before leaving home, but what the heck, right?

14 comments from clever and witty friends:

Julierose said...

What a lot of art installations!! My favorites are the mosaic works...love those beautiful blues...
that salmon looks yummy..I may make it for myself as hubby is not a salmon lover Thanks for the Crabapple linky--that is a really cute stitchery hugs, Julierose

Vicki W said...

Thank you for sharing all the art photos. This is my favorite kind of art!

Quilting Babcia said...

I love finding these little "art parks" in the middle of nowhere. So much fun to explore and see imagination running wild and free. I'm going to try that salmon, sounds delish.

quiltzyx said...

Love all the upcycled art installations! They are so much fun. I think that campground is a 'keeper' for sure.
I can see why the snowflakes are going faster than you expected - they are so beautiful you just want to keep going!

Karen said...

Thank you so much for the indie pattern. Can't wait to get started. Going to the library to get it copied tomorrow. Thank you, thank you.

Alcea Rosea 31 said...

You do get to some beautiful and interesting places. I love your travels around the U'S.A. The snowflake is so delicate and elegant.

CathieJ said...

Thanks for the picture tour of you campground area. How eclectic and interesting. I love your snowflake.

Farm Quilter said...

What an awesome place to stay!!! The art work is amazing and how much fun would the star gazing be at the theater! Enjoy Hemet! Your snowflake is amazing!

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

O Man!! there sure is a lot of art to see at THIS campground.
xx, Carol

piecefulwendy said...

What a fascinating walk, and the sunset at the end was stunning. What a fun day. Glad Mike's ankle is feeling better. Poor Smitty; it's a bit sad to see him so unsettled being out.

Denise :) said...

I'm really digging this snowflake! Your satin stitches are scrumptious! :)

kc said...

Beautiful artwork, I love this sort of thing! Those mosaic benches looked inviting, especially on a warm day. The sanctuary looked like a good place to meditate and speculate... Maybe even offer a prayer if you're so inclined.

Good to see the kitties, Smitty reminds me of my cup of tea. Nice to walk around, but even nicer to come back to familiar comfort at the end of the excursion. Hope Mike has fully recovered by now. The slaw sounds scrumptious, I made tequila lime cilantro for yesterday's fish fry. We didn't end up attending, as we had a better offer (oops, maybe I should say we had another opportunity) but I sent the bowl over with the neighbor, very little came back, which was fine by me!

That sunset was gorgeous!

Kate said...

Lots of fun "yard art". Definitely worth a good tour around the camp ground. I guess Smitty has gotten used to being an in door kitty and the outside just doesn't appeal anymore?

Deb A said...

Wow! What a wonderful place you got to visit! I especially love the tic tac toe board.