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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Having a little adventure

   I love having Chris home. He urges me to step out of the box and be adventurous again. When you get older you can get complacent and satisfied with the status quo.
   Yesterday we all went to the movies to see Catching Fire, the Hunger Games second movie. It was really good, in fact, I liked it better than the first one. Afterwards we took our cameras and went up to Allegany State Park for some photo opportunities. We had lots of snow and the roads were packed with snow but absolutely beautiful.

   It’s a lovely drive through the woods and on the way we passed a huge hill with some sled riders. DSCF3168

We rode around Red House Lake and then Chris turned onto a side road…and then made a turn onto a hilly road labeled Limited access. This is where it got scary for me. Chris is an excellent driver and I’m glad of that because it was only plowed for one lane and steep. He drove with caution all the way to the top while I held my breath that we wouldn’t meet another car. We were rewarded when we reached the summit with this:DSCF3173
It is called the Stone Tower and probably was built as a fire tower. The views were amazing. DSCF3174 DSCF3175 DSCF3176 We climbed the snow covered steps cautiously to the top and were wowed with the vista. DSCF3188DSCF3190 DSCF3199 DSCF3202
DSCF3186 DSCF3196 What a lovely way to see the sunset.

You will find something more in woods than in brooks.
Trees and stones will teach you
that which you can never learn from masters.
~~Saint Bernard

Friday, November 29, 2013

Black Friday

Are you rushing out to shop today? No, me neither. Especially since I have retired I've wanted to shop when the stores aren't crowded. I even try to stay out of Walmart on the weekends. In the past we used to visit my sister in Philly and shop till we dropped on Black Friday. Since my hometown is considered pitiful shopping when I got to the big city I would just go crazy with all the choices. I would come home with the car stuffed. Now, not so much. I like to pace myself with buying presents. I still have a few more to buy but I have a good start. So happy Friday to you whatever you choose to do today. 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

This thanksgiving day

Count your blessings today. Count the big things like your family's love and your friends loyalty. Count the small things over and over...a sunny day, a sparkling snowflake, having a day when everything goes great. We are blessed. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Looking out

I love the time first thing in the morning. It is so quiet and peaceful as I look out the window at the fresh snow. Tatiana has on a bonnet and shawl of white and the trees look like artist's renderings. How calm it makes me feel. In a few minutes I will begin making the stuffing, cooking the bird and making my son's favorite broccoli salad. I am cooking our turkey today so we will have leftovers here at home. We are going to my mother in law's tomorrow for the big turkey day and I will be making three sides to take. So just for this moment I will take a deep breath and be thankful. I am blessed. I am grateful. How wonderful my life is. And how lucky I am. Whispering....thank you. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Staying in and staying warm

Tomorrow begins the Thanksgiving prep with a list of things that need to be done. The snow has come but just a little with more for tonight and tomorrow. Chris will be driving up from near Harrisburg so I hope that the roads will be safe. I hope all of,you have a happy Thanksgiving. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Gretchen and Dan

My grandson Daniel and his girlfriend Gretchen are having a holiday in Hungary and the Check Republic. Prague is Gretchen's favorite European city and is showing Dan around. Gretchen and Dan live in Pittsburgh where he works as an engineer and she is a systems analyst at a bank. It's so nice that they get to travel. They spent last spring break in Costa Rica. 

The candle-ier

A small iron candle-ier hangs over the dining room table in the sunroom. This year I am trying a new tack for Christmas decorating...use what you have and don't buy new decorations. You may remember last year when I came home from my sister's in Fredericksburg, VA with this beautiful wreath that I won. It was my first time going to the Jan Williams floral demonstration. jan, who once decorated the White House, gives this demonstration every year at Mary Washington College to raise money. They gather greens from all over the campus and she uses them to create wreaths and centerpieces right before your eyes. Then afterwards she raffles them off I was lucky enough to win this beautiful boxwood wreath. 

Of course after Christmas I had to throw away the boxwood but I took off all the bows, bird, pine ones, and berries. This year I used them to decorate my candle-ier. Hope you like it. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

I collect pictures

Surfing the web can bring you all kinds of beauty. Bath water is one of my favorite sites to visit. Posted there are a collection of photos from all over the world. I enjoy just looking and admiring the great photography. These I saved and categorize as Places I would like to be....

And this one is just amazing...

Saturday, November 23, 2013


This poem was handwritten by Susan Branch and exemplifies how I feel sitting in my house today. It has been blustery with snow all day but I have a warm safe place to rest. We moved here in 1973 which seems like eons ago. My children grew up here and now we are retired here. We have permanence. We have a history with this house. It has seen such laughter and tears. It has always been called cozy. It has been my fortress. I love each room..the hardwood floors ...the brick and stone outside. It's more than a house..it's my home. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Just an idea

I was thinking....

I do a lot of blogging but never have any photo albums anymore to have a tangible record to look at. For my New Year's resolution I'd like to make it a priority to print out one photo a week and journal about it in a book form. As I get older I feel the need to leave a record. What will my children and grandchildren know of the real me?  Will this blog still be around or someday will all my years of thoughts just vanish into space?  As I look into the future I can't imagine a world without books or printed photos..but yet newspapers and magazines are currently struggling to stay in existence and how soon will it be before libraries will be all digital?  Things are changing, my friend. 

It's merry Christmas at my house now

Did you notice that I missed yesterday's post? I was so busy I forgot. All afternoon I was finishing up my decorating. More pictures will follow later I promise but right now life is making me busy. 
   Today after meeting my friends for coffee I went over the hill to the next town of Olean to take some books back to their library. I use both our hometown library and Olean's since it is larger. I came home with a tote full which will give me some reading material for awhile. Then it was off to the mall where I did some Christmas shopping. I can't leave Olean without stopping at KFC and bring a bucket of chicken home for Don. No cooking tonight!
   This afternoon I will have to decide between reading the newest book on my ipad. (white Fire, A Pendergast novel) or putting bins back in the attic. Can you guess what I'll do?  Right!
  Here's a picture of the follow arrangement that I bought last year at Jan William's Florist in Fredericksburg, VA. I kept it in the sunroom all year long but it is especially appropriate with my white Christmas theme.  

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Love this quote

I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite -- only a sense of existence." 
-- Henry David Thoreau 

I caved

I was determined to wait till after thanksgiving to decorate,really.  But then I realized...#1. Thanksgiving is late this year and #2 I am going to be gone the first weekend in December. So out came the bins from the attic. I spent the whole afternoon decorating the sunroom and even though I was trying to keep it simpler than in the past it was a lot of hard work. I am exhausted. 
I'll post more pictures tomorrow. I was trying to incorporate some of the things I already had using the theme of French Country. I don't know how frenchy it looks but I'm happy with it. Tomorrow I'll do a little bit of decorating in the living room and that will be it except for a few outdoor lights. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Do you do a theme at Christmas?

Are you a person who puts out the same decorations that you treasure year after year in the same place?  Or do you change?  I seem to have different themes each year since we added a sunroom to the back of our house. Here are some themes from the past....garden Christmas, country Christmas, Christmas with a French touch. 

Can you guess how I'd like to decorate this year?  Here's a little hint of my inspiration pictures.