Nature Trail Photos at the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy

A Relaxing Past Time

I spent a delightful afternoon wandering about by bird watching and enjoying nature’s foliage, views and more at the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy – a Southern California nonprofit land trust which is part of the nearly 1000-acre San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve, bordered by the northern San Diego areas of Solana Beach, Encinitas and Rancho Santa Fe.

I began my solo stroll at the ‘green’  San Elijo Lagoon Nature Center (2710 Manchester Avenue
Cardiff-by-the-Sea, CA 92007).  The volunteers and rangers were very helpful with information. I gave a donation and visited the interactive exhibits. The Nature Center sells limited items such as maps, books, snacks/drinks etc.

I embarked on my journey by following the beautiful trail. Here are some photos from the day!

Nature Center and Trail

Feel free to hover over/click on each photo to see the name and enlarge it.

I visited during low tide and was able to see a variety of shore birds at the mud flats. The trail is quite easy to navigate (it also includes ADA accessible boardwalk). There are natural-looking overlooks and benches for those who’d like a rest, or just sit and observe!

Bird Watching!

Feel free to hover over/click on each photo to see the name and enlarge it.

The Mallards!


More Bird Watching!

Double-Crested Cormorant

Enjoying the Surroundings!

Feel free to hover over/click on each photo to see the name and enlarge it.

I also enjoyed admiring the foliage and surroundings. Here’s a peek at what I saw that day…Spring has sprung indeed!

Such a wonderful day!

Snowy Egret

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A Visit to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park: Video, Photos and a Haiku!


We had a lovely day at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park !

Here’s a video snippet…Enjoy!

(Feel free to make the video larger – click on the lower right corner)!

Some Images of the Day!


Safari Park Treasures

By Susan J. Farese, SJF Communications

1.  Animals galore

Nature as art images

Magnificent views

2. This safari park

  One more gem, San Diego!

In Escondido!

3. Creatures large and small

I could watch for days!

Until the next time!


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Another Gem in San Diego: Miramar Reservoir

Thanks to my friend’s recommendation, my husband and I recently visited the Miramar Reservoir for the first time. Located in the Scripps Ranch area of San Diego, Miramar Reservoir is a place loaded with nature and atmosphere! One of those ‘hidden gems’ in my opinion. Nearly 5 miles of paved trail (and a few areas right next to the water) surround the ‘lake’.

Want to go fishing? You can obtain a fishing permit, bait & tackle from the facilities and concessions stand.  Apparently the reservoir is home to largemouth bass, crappie (lol), bluegill, channel catfish, sunfish and trout. There are minimum size & amount limits.

Also visit the concession stand (opened Wednesdays through Sundays) for the following:

Hungry or  Thirsty? Grab some snacks & drinks!

Up for some exercise with a bike ride? You can rent bikes for adventures on land!

Yearning for the water? You can rent kayaks, motorized boats, rowboats even pedal boats! Read here about restrictions and use of float tubes as well

Or, like us, simply power walk, or simply stroll the trail loop.

What are you waiting for???

Directions: Take #15 to Mira Mesa Boulevard traveling East. Take a right turn onto Scripps Ranch Boulevard, then a left on Scripps Lake Drive. You’ll see the entrance on your left.

Feel free to click on these photos from our afternoon at Miramar Reservoir! You can click on each one to see a better view.

First of all, the ‘geese patrol’ greeted us!

Some beautiful images of the Miramar Reservoir from our walk

(Click on each for a larger view)

This signage invites you to rent and enjoy a paddleboat!

Signage at Miramar Reservoir. Photo by SJF Communications


A few images of the boat dock…

Boat Rentals, Miramar Reservoir. Photo by SJF Communications, 2018


Boat Rentals, Miramar Reservoir. Photo by SJF Communications, 2018


And finally, more geese!

(Click on each for a larger view)

Ah, and a beautiful bougainvillia as well!

(Click on each for a larger view)

Beautiful bougainvillea at Miramar Reservoir, Photo by SJF Communications, 2018

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Photos and Fun Exploring Julian, California!

Apple pie, apple cider, photos

…and lots of cool shops and restaurants!

We’re sold on JULIAN!

During the Thanksgiving Holiday, we had an enjoyable mountain getaway day trip to Julian, California. (We usually travel the less than an hour road trip from San Diego each year).

Julian is a picturesque, historic gold-mining town that exudes lots of charm!

This time, my daughter Emmy and her best friend Sydney were my traveling, shopping and dining  buddies and also helped with photography.

Our day started with a delicious lunch at the Julian Grille.

Photos by SJF Communications

Afterwards we checked out the shops, enjoyed the apple pie at Mom’s Pies (oh yes, and the apple cider) and ventured to take in the autumn foliage, colorful leaves and beautiful scenery.

Of course, many photos were snapped that day and we want to share them with you! Overall a delightful day in Julian!

Hope you enjoy these photos of our spectacular crisply colorful autumn day! Click on individual photos to see more details!

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Emmy (in the hat) and Sydney – Exploring Julian!


Places to Shop!

Some of the shops that we noticed: The Birdwatcher, Julian Mountain Emporium, Kathy’s Dress Shop, Quilts & More, Hog Heaven, Julian Imports, Julian Book House, Julian Cider Mill, Julian Cafe & Bakery, Julian Trading Company, Julian Imports, Antique Boutique, JAG Art Gallery, the     T-Haus, & the Cuyamaca Clay Company.

Places to Nosh!

The Julian Grille, Romano’s Restaurant, Buffalo Bills, Blue Door Winery, Apple Alley Bakery, and Julian Cafe & Bakery, among others! Yum!

More Cool Images!

Let’s allow these photos to speak for themselves!



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A Quick Visit to the San Diego Zoo

It’s great to enjoy an annual pass at the San Diego Zoo! It’s a quick getaway…since we live in San Diego!

Plus, there’s abundant sunshine, a fun way to walk my steps for fitness, and of course, getting to visit the wonderful animals and appreciate nature at the same time!

This past week, I visited the Hummingbird Aviary House, as well as the Gorilla, Orangutan and Reptile Exhibits (and loved photographing the beautiful hibiscus flowers)!

Hope you all enjoy these snapshots! Go ahead…click on each photo to see it enlarged!

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SJF Communications

The Hummingbirds & Other Birds


The Reptiles

The Gorillas

The Orangutans

The Hibiscus Flowers

A Photographic Evening at Balboa Park, San Diego

Even buildings smiled for the camera!

I decided to stroll around Balboa Park last evening with my camera in hand…and what a treat it was! Take a gander at some of the cool flowers, architecture, and more!

You can click on each photo for more detail!

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Check out these gorgeous flowers! Go ahead…click away to see the full images! Spectacular colors!

…Plus…some snapshots of this cute bunny posing and feasting!

Finally, couldn’t resist taking photos of this beautiful fountain!

Fountain at Balboa Park, Photos by SJF Communications
Fountain at Balboa Park, Photos by SJF Communications
Fountain at Balboa Park, Photos by SJF Communications

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A Visit to Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala’


Some photos from my June 9, 2017 visit to Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala’

Photo credit: SJF Communications

Feel free to click on each photo (arrow key advances), like, comment, & share!


Captured Images: Earth Day 2017 at Balboa Park, San Diego


Celebrating the Earth and the Day…One Flower or Image at a Time!

It was a beautiful San Diego day last Sunday, April 23, 2017. I was meeting friends from the East Coast at the San Diego Zoo. Little did I know that Balboa Park was celebrating Earth Day, and it was extremely crowded! Parking took forever! But lo and behold, I finally was able to park and decided to capture some images of the afternoon at Balboa Park en route to meeting my friends.

Most of the images are flowers. That’s celebrating the Earth, right???

Feel free to enjoy these images by clicking on each one.

Have fun and kindly “Like, Comment, Share” away!


All photo credit: SJF Communications

More Hummingbirds: Tiny Magnificent Creatures!

 I continually marvel at hummingbirds…such tiny magnificent magical creatures!

Their stunning colorful beauty, their speed, their zest for the “hummingbird life”….

It beats watching the news these days. It inspires my creative spirit and hope!

 I’ve  combined some poetry (Haiku), video footage and photographic images just for you!


Hummingbirds: A Haiku:


Susan J. Farese, SJF Communications

1.  Fluttering about

Zooming, oh, so rapidly

Marvelous colors!

2. Hummingbird magic

Unique, beautiful creatures

Don’t fly away, stay!


Here is a short video from today. See these lovely hummingbirds in action as they fly continuously over to the feeders and enjoy nectar, hover, and then dance away!

And now…some photographic images!

Hopefully these hummingbird images will captivate you and yours too!


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Red-headed Male Anna Hummingbird looking up at the nectar!


Beautiful aqua and green coat Anna Hummingbird


Anna is almost at the nectar finish line!


Anna Hummingbird on a twig


I see the flower!


Male Anna hummingbird enjoying the afternoon!


Circling the nectar feeder


So hungry!


Love this wingspan!


Doesn’t this male Anna hummingbird look like a halo above his head? Wings!


I can taste that nectar already!


Two hummingbirds negotiating!


Just another nectar break!
“Here’s lookin’ at you, kid”, said the male Anna hummingbird!
Headshot! Male Anna hummingbird
Fluttering away!
Feathered friend!


Which way did they go?? Male Anna hummingbird


Male Anna hummingbird looking up to the sky!


I was there first! No, I was! OK, let’s eat!
Blue skies!!
Time for more nectar!


Male Anna hummingbird on a palm leaf!



See? A palm leaf! Told you!


Hope you enjoyed the poem, video and photos from SJF Communications!

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A Photographic Journey through the San Diego State University (SDSU) Campus

I recently spent some time strolling on the beautiful campus at San Diego State University (SDSU). Our daughter is enrolled for Fall, 2016 and we love taking the time to explore every chance we get!

Here are some photos I captured that gloriously beautiful day! I wish I could have photographed the entire campus! Perhaps I will visit again soon to capture much more! Feel free to click on each photo.

Subscribe and leave comments and let us know if you have any links, photos or blog posts about SDSU as well! Enjoy!


Hepner Hall with the Hardy Memorial Tower in the Background



SDSU Campus Map



Colorful Signage


SDSU Transit Center


Conrad Prebys Student Union


SDSU Pedestrian Bridge
SDSU Pedestrian Bridge



Conrad Prebys Student Union



Conrad Prebys Student Union Walkway


Conrad Prebys Student Union


Conrad Prebys Student Union


Student Services West


Manchester Hall


Student Services West




SDSU Clock Tower


SDSU’s Love Library Dome


Capturing another  view of the Conrad Prebys Student Union


SDSU’s Love Library


SDSU’s Love Library


SDSU’s Love Library




SDSU’s Love Library


Between Performing Arts area and Hepner Hall



And here is some of the gorgeous foliage seen that day. Click on each photo to enlarge it. Such vivid color and so many beautiful varieties of trees and flowers!


And a few more images of the “bench art” and more!

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