Monday, December 31, 2018

New Year's Eve 2018

Greetings, my friends.  This is an (almost) eleventh hour post to close out 2018 and to vow to be a better blogger friend in the New Year!  My Christmas tree looks about the same as it does every year, but I love it so.  My favorite ornament continues to be Dorothy's Red Shoe, purchased at the Smithsonian Museum of American History a few years ago.  It's there in the middle - a little to the left.  My bear was from the now defunct Rich's Department Store, free with a purchase (or something like that) back in the 70s.  I saw one at an antique mall last Saturday for $24.  Mine still looks new every year, since it stays in a plastic bag in the Christmas closet during the year.  

My sister and brother-in-law's home on Christmas morning, before I saw anyone.  Peaceful and quiet.  This was my late mother's wee Christmas tree that she had in her assisted living apartment.  I love that my sis puts it in her foyer every year.

Kitty Pete on Christmas Day.  It was warm enough in the Florida panhandle to sit outside with no jacket.  Pete was the first one I saw on Christmas morning.  He was lying on the kitchen table, which he is forbidden to do.  I was looking at the view out back before I spotted him.  He looked at me with no guilt.  He either figured I didn't care that he was on the table, or he didn't care what I thought.  I imagine it as the latter.  :)

Spotted at the aforementioned antique mall last Saturday.  A cardboard cutout of the King of Rock and Roll.  I texted the photo to my friend Steven, who has a partner who adores Elvis.  He replied, "I love what you've done with your living room!"  

I hope your holidays were Merry and Bright.  And I hope the New Year will be good to you.  Hugs!

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Hello and goodbye to October...

I took this photo at the end of September, when I finally had to admit summer was essentially over in the Deep South.  We have had a warm fall, but it was time to take up that summer rug and say goodbye to summer on the porch.

 The condo trees are finally getting some color.  I love the dappled sunlight in the late afternoon.

The last time I posted, I was heading to my favorite hideaway in the Nantahala Forest.  This breathtaking scene made me stop in my tracks one morning.  It's where I can relax and just breathe.

This was supposed to be my October post.  Yesterday, as I was writing October 31 for the hundredth time that day, I realized that October just ripped by.  My favorite Anne of Green Gables quote: “I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”  Me, too.

Friday, September 28, 2018

The mountains are calling, smart fishies, and breathtaking

The view from the end of the driveway at my favorite mountain hideaway.  This guy was quietly fly fishing one afternoon.

A gloomy walk, but still beautiful at the dam on Lake Chatuge in nearby Hiawassee, Georgia.  The fishermen speeding away had been there awhile, with no luck, and some fish actually jumped out of the water when the boat left.  Laughing behind their fins, no doubt.  :)

Look at those mountains in the distance.  Just breathtaking, I think.  I stopped my car and got out to gaze at the view for a moment.

These photos were from a visit Labor Day weekend and I will be there again in a few hours.           "The mountains are calling, and I must go." John Muir

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Sister time, peace and almost full moon

Pensacola Beach, Florida last Thursday, just before sunset, on a walk with my sisters during our annual "sister time." 

We stayed at a condo that overlooked Sabine Bay, this was just minutes after the beach walk.  It was lovely to watch the sunset with the girls.  I titled this photo, "Peace."

On Friday evening, we stepped outside a restaurant in Gulf Breeze to this view of the almost full moon overlooking the city of Pensacola.  It was a lovely time together.

I figured I should post at least once in August.  Baby bird update (see post from July 16):  I went by the hardware store garden center a few weeks ago to check on the baby birds.  They had indeed put a "not for sale" sign on it and had enjoyed listening for the sweet chirps coming from the nest on high.  Thankfully, the mom wasn't put off by the nest going on a little car journey.  The garden center manager lifted the plant down to show me the empty nest.  I wish those fledgling birds would visit my porch.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Good Things Happened: morning, a bee & an adventure

The view from my car, as I was getting into it on Sunday morning.  The plants all looked so nice, that I couldn't resist snapping a photo.  Neighbor Rhonda is a much better gardener than I, but I do contribute to about 1/3 of this.

This guy was busy working on the petunias (OK - probably not petunias - I'll ask Rhonda).  This photo was actually the first one - I had to go back inside to find my phone so I could snap the photo.  And then it was inside my purse all along.  Does this kind of thing happen to you guys?  It happens to me all too often.  :)

This plant is new - replacing the flowering one purchased in May, which went south fairly quickly (probably needed more all-day light).  I thought I would just get another fern, since they do well in this spot.  And this turned into an adventure:  Around 5:30pm on Saturday, I went to the garden center at the hardware store nearby, and a young man who was watering all the plants at the end of the day helped me take down a nice, bushy, hanging fern.  The cashier rang it up and kindly carried it to the car for me.   I got home, took the fern out of the back of my car and noticed the edge of a bird's nest.  Oh my - please let this be an empty nest, I thought.  But no - I parted the fern fronds and - shriek!  There was one unhatched egg + two live baby birds, looking up at me anxiously, with their beaks open.  I looked at the time - 5:48pm.  The hardware store closes at 6, so I raced back up there and made it with two minutes to spare.  The store staff came from all corners to ooh and aah over the babies.  I finally insisted we get it hung back up exactly where it was, so their mama could find them and rest assured they were back safely.  The young man who had been watering hoisted it back into place.  I hope they'll be OK.  I suggested they put a not for sale note on it.  And somehow, having lost my enthusiasm for ferns, at that point, I got this spider plant instead.  

Feeling a little guilty at not being around to your blogs, but I will touch base this week.  Lots going on here, nothing bad, just not a lot of home computer time.  Thank you for coming by.  Hugs!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Good Things Happened: Summer

Just a quick post.  I snapped this photo on Sunday morning when the sun was shining down so blindingly, that I just pointed my phone and shot.  That plant seems to like its spot.

Hope you all are well!

Friday, June 8, 2018

Good Things Happened: Hello Spring!, Dreams, Moody view

The proprietor of my favorite little antiques / cool stuff shop in Lilburn, Georgia created this homage to Spring, which is almost over.  Sure has been beautiful.

Early last Saturday, the young 'uns were up and at it at the ball field at Mountain Park Park.  I titled this photo Field of Dreams and wonder how many dream of being big leaguers.

And there was a trip to my favorite mountain area the weekend before that.  It was a soggy trip, but I didn't mind.  I read two books on the back porch and just watched the river go by.

The last photo is of the drive up the mountain to my sister's vacation house.  Loved the mist on the mountains there.  Hope you all are well.  I'll be around for blog visits the next couple of days.  Hugs!

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Good Things Happened: Mothering, legacy and memories

 I went visiting this weekend, to see my beloved family in northern Florida.  And then my sister and I went to visit our aunt, cousin and his wife in Jacksonville on Saturday, where we also got to see a new second cousin - just five months old.  It was lovely to see his first time mom in action - so loving and happy.  This is the view of the St. John's river from my aunt's balcony - I would be out there all the time, I said.

 Neighbor Rhonda brought these peony bushes from her late mother's home in Mount Holly, North Carolina.  This is the first time they have bloomed since then.  A lovely legacy!

And this vase always makes me smile a little.  About 20 years ago, I was helping my late mom get ready for a gathering at her home, and asked if I should pick some irises from her garden for the table.  As it turned out, she didn't have a vase.  This seemed odd to me, but she just didn't.  So I gifted her this one for Mother's Day that year.  She did not seem as excited as I was about it.  And then the next time I visited, I found that she had put some Spanish moss in the bottom of it and filled it with silk flowers.  Sigh.  So it's mine now and I use it all the time - this time with purchased irises.  This might not seem so much like a "Good Things" story, but it is, because I learned from it to choose gifts that I know the recipient really wants and to remember that flowers are often best enjoyed just where they grow.

I hope everyone had a lovely day today, whether you are a mom or not.  You are special to me!

Monday, April 30, 2018

Good Things Happened: home, sweet, home

It's been days and days since I posted.  There was a minor medical issue that kept me at home for a few days - all better now.  Being at home with nothing much to do gave me a renewed appreciation of it, as seen below.

On the first day, niece Amanda and her family sent me flowers.  I can't think of the last time I got flowers!  It was thrilling.  I'm still enjoying them.  The delivery man seemed to enjoy my reaction, "I got flowers!!!"

I was looking for something else in a kitchen cabinet and found these two forgotten items.  The one on the left is a handy thing in which you can pull tarragon through the holes to strip the leaves. Stripping tarragon is kind of annoying, so I guess that's why I bought this.  It doesn't come up that often, but when it does, I'm set.  :)

There was clean out the refrigerator cooking.  Do you ever buy stuff for recipes you end up not making?  I made roasted vegetables, using carrots, fennel and the red onion that is in the bowl in the first photo.  (Yum.)  And yesterday, there was still a bunch of unused flat-leaf parsley, so I made pesto out of it.  That's it pictured above.  Parsley, olive oil, toasted walnuts and Parmesan cheese in the food processor.  I'm having some of it on penne pasta for lunch today.

And I enjoyed breakfast on the back porch yesterday.  There has been so much rain in Georgia, that the trees are nicely leafed out now.  It was cool and lovely.  And a hummingbird whizzed by a couple of times, probably to remind me about putting that feeder up.

I'll be playing a little blog catch up in the next few days.  Hope you have a good week!

Friday, April 13, 2018

Good Things Happened: Another good dog and friends

I love dogs like friend Carol's dog, Bailey.  He was chosen from a shelter years ago and has been just the best dog, she says.  He never commands attention, like his brethren at the park.  I like that.

This hosta gets a mention every year, just for being faithful. It hibernates in the winter and makes an appearance in early spring.  I had almost forgotten about it until I saw some little shoots coming up.  It has made this miraculous transformation in the last two weeks.  It will double in size from this - it's just getting started.

Neighbor Rhonda is laying in some bedding plants, which gave me a huge smile when I got home yesterday.  She didn't feel like it last year, so this is definitely a good thing.

Google presented me with this altered photo of the dogwood tree that presides over the trash compactor at the condos.  I had not planned to use it, but it's rather striking now.  :)

I know it's not pretty everywhere like it is in the south, but you'll get there, I promise.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, my friends!

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Good Things Happened: Dog of the week, lilies and blessings

Friends Janice and Chip's dog Chili, at the park, after I asked him if he would like to be dog of the week.  I think the answer was clearly, "Yes!"

I was invited to Easter dinner at friends Laura and Bob's home.  The table was exquisitely set with pretty Easter themed china, crystal and napkins.  I loved the Lilies of the Valley from their yard - so perfect I thought they were artificial at first.

A wee present from Laura at each place setting - these beautiful little "Spring Blessings" packages.  Such a gracious hostess.

I hope you are having a good weekend.  I've finally gotten caught up on some sleep!

Friday, March 30, 2018

Good Things Happened: Bunny, good shopping and glorious

A cute Easter treat that looked so bright and shiny in my kitchen.  "Looked" is the key word.  I needed some chocolate this week and the ears went first.  :)  

I parked in front of this beautiful loading dock door at Builders Steel Supply in Lilburn, Georgia last Saturday, when I was attending the Spring open house at my favorite antique shop up the street.  Amazing door - I wonder where it came from?

I snagged these two wine glasses for $3.50 each at the open house.  My sister has a set that she bought in Germany years ago.  I always liked them, so wanted to take these home.  She says they are Roemer Glass, made to drink sweet wines from the Rhine region of Germany.

And finally a glorious sunrise as I stepped out of my car at 7:15am yesterday morning, as I got to work.  Such beauty in the midst of an industrial area got my day started out just right.

Thank you for visiting today.  I'll be around to yours in the next couple of days!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Smiles, blossoms and relaxation

Friend Laura's dog Mac - who clearly loves her very much.  And it was a special treat for him, to walk with us at the park without his very boisterous younger sis.  

The blooming Bradford Pear tree at the library.  I was parked underneath it and went home with little white blossoms on my car.

A water main line broke in my county a few days ago and we were under a boil water advisory, which affected local businesses.  My favorite neighborhood pub had to use plastic ware while that was going on.  I didn't mind and enjoyed the view of my village's main street while waiting for a friend.  The plastic cup reminded me of college days and Mardi Gras.  :)  

It's Friday!  Yay.  I hope you have a great weekend.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Good Things Happened: Zen Garden and along the way

The new job has me working in an area that used to be reception (they are running out of room, I think.)  These are my new office mates in the fish tank that is to my back.  I'm calling it working in The Zen Garden.  :)

I used to love to walk at Tanyard Creek Park near my office, but stopped walking there when I hurt my knee (since mostly recovered).  So since it's been two years since my last visit, I headed over there last Saturday morning, having another errand in that area.  The Lenten Roses beside the creek are in bloom, right on time.

There was so much activity in the park.  I encountered two photo shoots during my hour walk, one was a woman doing some sort of spoken word for the camera, and the other was the woman on the right, above, who was changing poses like a fashion model.  Cute.  :)  And I realized when I downloaded the photo, that I also captured a woman comforting a boy, there on the left.  So sweet.


I hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Good Things Happened - Saturday in the park

Friend Laura and I had just finished our walk at Mountain Park Park last Saturday, when her friend who fosters dogs stopped to chat.  I looked down and one of them was standing at attention on his hind legs, without moving.  "He wants to be petted." she said.  And so we did.

A little boy was hanging out with his father, waiting for the ball field to open.  I smiled at the wee one on my first pass by.  On our second pass, he approached and said he had picked this bloom for me. 

It's been gloomy here for days (and strangely warm), so that's why this photo from the drive thru at Starbucks isn't more bright than it is.  The cherry trees are blooming already!

Here's something not to be gloomy about - it's Friday!  Yay.  I hope your weekend is amazing, my friends.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Good Things Happened: The Present, past and future

The owner of the printing company at which I've worked for 10 years has hobby printing presses in the basement of his home and loves to print items using the letterpress technique.  The lovely thought on the card pictured above was something he printed and has been propped on a file cabinet outside my cubicle for a couple of years.  I asked him if I could have it, when I was packing up my stuff on my last day there on Wednesday.  

A printing company down the street bought the "book of business" and four of us have moved with it, beginning yesterday.  (Yet another first day - oh my - but it was fine.)  I was a two-cubicle girl at the old place.  This was my account manager cube, all cleaned out.  I took the chair with me (with permission, of course.)

Bruce and Kathy opened the business in 1981.  He had already been in the printing business for 14 years.  They are retiring, but will spend the next couple of months finalizing the closing of the business, where 51,216 printing jobs were processed.  It's bittersweet, but we are all beginning a new chapter in our lives as we celebrate The Present.

Have a lovely weekend, y'all!