Category Archives: Our travels

Autumn Daze and Country Roads

I had the best two days this past week doing something I love to do. Drive along country roads and go antiquing.  There was an event going on.  Several ladies had joined together to have a tour of their home owned shops out in the hills and valleys of southern Indiana. It was called Country Neighbors.  Now country neighbors don’t always live close to each other.     When David and I started out, we didn’t have a map, just addresses I had gotten off the internet.  Miss Garmin had a problem finding the first one.  We missed it entirely.   But just remember, the best is usually saved until the last.

It was just by happenstance I saw a sign along the road  regarding one of the shops and then we realized there were signs all over if we had known to watch for them. After that, we had no problem finding them as we got a map at this particular one.

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Please forgive me if I don’t put the names of  all the shops here as we went to several and I can’t remember which was which, but this one was called  the Washhouse for a reason you will soon see  It was so wonderful with so much to see and so much to buy if you chose to do so. I bought several things here.  I added to my Santa Claus collection. Getting to this place was quite a trip along high cliffs and woods.

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This was a gem of a scenic drive that not many people see.  Most people go to Brown County to see the Fall foliage, but this was just as beautiful and we were the only people there.

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The colors of the leaves on the trees was just wonderful.  This picture looks magical to me.

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It was just a gorgeous Autumn day.  But, back to the shop…..

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The proprietor had a washhouse where she actually did her laundry, but it didn’t look like any ordinary laundry room. It was a building off by itself.  Full of all kinds of old laundry paraphernalia like wooden clothespins, wash tubs, old baskets and old clothes pin bags hanging on the walls.

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Here is David getting ready to go inside.  Long underwear hung on clotheslines outside.

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She really had quite the collection.

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And she really did her laundry here because there are her washer and dryer hidden underneath a cloth. If I had a laundry room like this, I would be doing laundry every day!

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This was another little shop and here are some pictures from a few others.

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Each was unique in its own way.

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I remember this one only because the lady who had the shop told us to go on through her house and look at it.  I was a little concerned to just walk into a stranger’s house and look all over it and I said, “Do you really mean we can go walk around your house?”  And she said, Yes,” so she didn’t have to tell me again and in David and I went into one of the most wonderful houses I have ever seen. Her husband was standing in the kitchen offering hot cider(which I am not fond of) and I said to him, “How do you feel having strangers walk through your house?” and he answered “I’m use to it.”  I found out this house had been in the magazine, Country Sampler and another magazine I don’t remember the name. It did look like it came right out of the pages.   Her décor was primitive with woolens folded neatly in an old cupboard. The bathroom is the rustic bathroom of my dreams and I told David if we ever get our little house built in our woods I want my bathroom to look like hers. I didn’t take any pictures because I didn’t feel right doing so, but if you ever get the chance to see this house, you must do it.  Her shop is called Mustard Seed.

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She has this cute sign out on her front lawn.

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As you can see from this brochure, Mustard Seed and the Washhouse will be open on December 1st and 2nd and will be decorated for Christmas.  Oh, How I would love to go back.  Maybe we will.  Who knows.   These shops are well worth the trip.

So we wandered through the countryside looking for all the shops and finding most of them.

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I really, really loved this building.

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And this little shop in a little barnlike structure.  I was fascinated by all the lighting in this shop. The husband had done some very unique light fixtures, one being an old fan. He used canning jars and hung them from the ceiling with old fashioned looking light bulbs inside them.    He directed us to the last shop we were going to and believe me, it was the best one and I don’t have any pictures because there was so much to see, I didn’t have time. It was in a very nice neighborhood by a state park. The lady who lived there had made her backyard a wonderland of old buildings and antique art with little old looking shops full of goodies to buy.  While waiting for me to get out of a shop David saw two deer and I got a picture of the backside of one of them before it got away.  But I can’t show it because I forgot to download it. I did buy a primitive table painted red. David and I had a discussion about how I had too many tables already and I won the discussion because it came home with us and sits in my girly room as I type.  We are going to put our Christmas tree on it.   One day, when we are gone, our kids are going to have the neatest stuff or the best auction!  I keep telling David I am buying our children’s legacy.  Ha.

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David is the perfect travel companion.  He drives me everywhere safely and waits patiently as I look at everything.  He did find himself a canister of buttons as he is a button collector and has thousands of them all over my workshop.  I am blessed and I know it.

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We drove by woods, old barns, bucolic scenery, majestic old houses, and little churches that dotted the countryside.

We followed a swollen river for miles.  They had had a lot of rain in southern Indiana and the rivers were overflowing their banks.

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The river was this close to the road.

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We drove down this road and came to water standing in it and David thought about driving through until I said a big “NO!” imagining us getting caught up in the current and swept downstream never to be heard of again, so we turned around and went another way.  It can be an adventure sometime to drive backroads.

Sunday was church and a day of rest and then today we got up early and drove to our younger grandboys’ school for a Veteran’s Day program. They put one on every year and invite veterans to come. The children sing patriotic songs and the principal gave a speech and a retired army colonel spoke and a boy played taps for all those lost in wars.  I must say, I got tears in my eyes hearing the children sing and a lump in my throat hearing taps.  David and I have talked about him being in the military. I have said it is my one regret that I did not join a branch of the military when I was a young girl.  It would have been good for me, I think.   We counted up all the days David was gone from home while in the National Guard and he was gone well over a year of our marriage and that doesn’t include the times he was traveling to other states to take classes.  He would go to different states and take pictures while there and later on our family would take trips to see what he saw.   That is how David and I have traveled in most of the states.  He was in the guard for over 36 years and not until he retired did he tell me he did not enjoy it. He was taking care of his family and that is what it meant to him.   It was a job and he did it well and was well respected by the men in his unit.  I didn’t know how well until one time we went to a Veteran’s Day parade in Indianapolis that he was taking part in and so many young men came up to him and saluted him and greeted him with smiles.  It made me very proud of him.

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This picture is horrible but here he is with our grandboys during the program.  They are learning to love our country, what serving our country means and they say the pledge of allegiance.  So proud of them, too.

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There was a bigger crowd this year than usual.   I think this school must be growing. It’s one of the highest rated schools in Indiana for elementary academics.   So happy my grandsons are going here.

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God bless our flag

Now to end this post with some added sweetness.

Our daughter’s golden retriever had puppies a couple of weeks ago.  She had eleven and six of them lived.

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They don’t pick them up for two weeks and it was so hard for me to keep my hands off of them.

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Such a sweet mama. Their little bellies were full as you can see.

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This is proud papa.

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In a couple of weeks we will go see them and I can hold them then.  Can’t wait.

To end this post today I will tell you a cute story. Or at least I think it’s cute. David came into the house today and told me to put on my shoes and come outside, he had something to show me.  I had no idea what it was.  He said he had heard our little lame chicken, Miss Mary Foster, just cackling up a storm like she had just laid an egg.

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This is Miss Mary Foster. She is such a pet.  She follows me around when I am in the chicken yard hoping for some extra chicken scratch and she gets it.

Anyway David showed me this.

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Just a bunch of old boxes and wood stacked in the garden,  but……..DSCN6449

behind it, Miss Mary Foster had been laying her eggs for at least five days. I don’t know why she started laying here as she has been laying in the chicken house, but now we know she is hiding her eggs.  I wonder if she thinks she can hatch them?  She can’t because they are not fertilized as we have no roosters. Poor Mary Foster.  Her hopes are dashed.

Here’s to darling shops, fun drives, puppies and sly chickens.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Indiana

I love my state.  I cannot deny it. I have been in almost all the states except Hawaii and Rhode Island and while all the states have something to offer and many are simply beautiful, I am always glad to get back to Indiana.   It’s been my home all my life and I’ve had a great life in it. No, we don’t have mountains, but we have rolling hills and valleys. No, we don’t have an ocean, but we have rivers and great lakes.  We also have weather that changes on a dime.  Cold today?  Just wait. Tomorrow you will be turning the air conditioner on to freeze.

This weekend David and I drove through southern Indiana. We were going somewhere.

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A Beth Moore Bible conference in Evansville.   I went to Evansville with my youth group when I was a teen-ager to visit Evansville College where I was thinking of going and to see a football game there.   I didn’t remember much about the city.

So with my trusty chauffeur in the driver’s seat, off we went.

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He wasn’t sure about all of this. You see, Beth Moore conferences are mainly for women.  Very few men attend them, but since way back in January I bought two tickets thinking I would give one to a friend and because no one was free that particular weekend, David was going to attend.  I told him it was just like going to church and since we missed our church services this weekend, we would still be worshipping.  He agreed reluctantly.   But it was a weekend away and we had other things planned as well.  Shopping, antiquing, sight seeing.

I went to one other Beth Moore conference with some friends from church and we had a great time.  But I do remember the music being very loud.

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Travis Cottrell does all the music for her conferences.

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You do feel like you are among friends when you are there.

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When all the women got their seats there were five thousand women(and a few lonely men) waiting to worship.

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Then Beth came out.  Her study was about God’s feet.  I know, it sounds strange until you know the context of what she was talking about. How God came to earth and he was an innocent baby with tiny little feet. He grew to be a man and wore sandals that John the Baptist said he was not worthy to unlatch.  The sick, lame and blind were brought to His feet to be healed.  People fell at his feet.   So many passages about Jesus’ feet in the Bible. That God’s sits on his throne in heaven and the earth is His footstool.  That Adam and Eve heard God’s very footsteps in Eden.    I never thought about God like this.  And that one day His feet will stand in Jerusalem once more.   And one day every single person will bow at His feet and proclaim Him Lord.

Now, I love Beth Moore conferences, but I do have one complaint.  A complaint that probably most of the young women attending the conference don’t have. I think the music is way too loud.  It hurt my ears. I don’t listen to much music anyway since I think music went downhill after the sixties!    David held his ears the whole time and he said he still could feel the beat, beat, beat of the drums on his chest.   It probably is our generation, but I like worship services to be a little more quiet and reverential.    I wonder if we can hear God’s still, small voice through all the noise.    Please, don’t take this personally if this is how your church worships.   If it’s a true worshipful service and it’s not just about the music and being entertained, then go for it.  I don’t think I will be getting David to another Beth Moore conference in the near future, however.

I felt like I learned a lot and want to do some more studying on the subject of God’s feet.

We didn’t go to the Saturday morning conference as we wanted the day for traveling and taking our time and not rushing to get home.  So we got up the next morning and searched for a donut shop. Yes, more donuts.  We found a Krispy Kreme and when we walked in the store’s door, the girl behind the counter immediately handed each of us a donut warm from the oven. Oh, my, goodness.  What a way to start the day!   We ordered some donuts and a coffee for me to go and set off to find a place to eat them on the Ohio River.  Did I say it was 102 degrees outside that day?    We decided to sit in the air conditioned car to eat our breakfast and look at the river.

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While at our motel, I read about the town of Newburgh.  It has an interesting story.  During the American Civil War, Confederate soldiers were seen across the Ohio River on the Kentucky side.  The leader of the Confederates knew they could not take the city with the few men he had so they took burned logs and stove pipes and made them look like cannons and made a lot of noise as if it was a great army and wouldn’t you know?  The whole town surrendered.  The Confederates came into town and got all the food and munitions they could find and then left.  Not a shot was heard because there was none.

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The town seems to take some pride in this.  I guess it’s their claim to fame.  Funny.  But that is not all the town is known for.  It’s a place out of history with so many old houses.  When we first drove into town we immediately saw this little store(which turned out having three buildings with neat things to buy.)

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Yes, they were retiring Vera.

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It was chock full of all kinds of goodness. I bought a few things, of course.

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I almost bought him.  I could kick myself for abstaining.

Newburgh is so wonderful.  How could you not love a town that gives one whole side of a street to walking paths?

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Walkers on the left, cars on the right.  The way it should be everywhere!  And there were a lot of people out walking in the horrible heat. Carrying water bottles  Smart.

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River towns take pride in how they were settled.   And their homes reflect their pride.

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This little white house had lime green and pink painted windows.  Cute.

We drove by secret gardens.

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We kept seeing these bushes and found out they were Crepe Mertles.  I don’t know if we are a little too far north to grow these.  We were in the south, don’t you know!

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Up and down streets, always with the great Ohio River within view.

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On back streets most tourists never see.  We love exploring the towns we are in.  There is never enough time to see it all, no matter how small the town.  I think I could live in any of these little towns and be happy as long as I had a garden.

Down a back street and we saw this.

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Large rock formations and we wondered how they were formed and only formed in this place.

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Then we saw these stair going up the side of the rock, so we stopped. “You going up?” I asked David.  I knew with my short legs and the steps being about one foot apart, it would be a chore for me, so I knew I  I wasn’t going.  “Sure, I’ll try it,” David replied.

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So up he began.

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Up.

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Up.

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Almost there.

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“I made it and you didn’t!”  How I wish I was up there with him.

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Wait. Now it’s starting to scare me.  Where is he going?

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No, no that is enough!   When he turned around and came down I asked him what was up there. “Not a darn thing,” he answered.  Oh, well. It looked like there might have been a cave up there.

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Evidently there had been a cave because some man thought it was a great place to live.

On to other little river towns.

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On a back street where we were the only people, there was a little yellow swing so we sat ourselves down and looked at this.

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The Ohio River flowing by.  How I love it.

Behind us was this.

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A mural painted on the side of the walls to keep out the flood waters when the river rises.

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This shows how far the river rose in these particular years.

Well, it wasn’t going to rise today.  They were having a dry spell in southern Indiana while we have had lots of rain where we live and flooding in the northern part of the state.

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The River trail.  It’s a great drive if you want to take it one day.

It was time to hurry on down the road through more little towns and we saw some very old buildings.

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We managed to drive to Rome, but no coliseums to see there. Only this wonderful old building.

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Sat down in the middle of nowhere.

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Right on the corner of Main and Mulberry.

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It was Rome’s courthouse, but there were very few houses around.

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This old building use to house an antique store. There were still antiques inside, but it doesn’t look like it’s been open for years.

Across the street was this building.

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At one time a cotton mill.  Now it’s apartments.  If I had to live in an apartment, this would be a great place to live. I would have loved to have seen inside.

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They have rooms to rent if you are looking for some out of the way place to live.

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It was built one hundred years before I was born and appears to be in great shape.  Don’t think I would hold up that well in another hundred years!

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I always look for barn quilts when we travel, but this is the only one I photographed.

We ate our supper at the Overlook, a restaurant right on the Ohio River with wonderful views from every window. We were high up there with the birds.   Our meal was catfish and was it ever good.

We were almost home but wanted some hand dipped ice cream for dessert.  That is hard to find, but finally I saw a big sign on a building in Salem.  Six Scoops was the name of the ice cream shop.  We put it on Garmin and she led us right to the door.

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And look what was painted on the side walk right outside.

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So cute and the ice cream was so good and a wonderful ending to a perfect weekend.

Here’s to Indiana, it’s old river towns and ice cream. Bye.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

Anniversary!

 

David and I are celebrating our 49th wedding anniversary this weekend.   The last couple of days we have been traveling, but today is supposed to be a day of rest.  We told each other even though we were home, we would not do any work. Which is why I have already done two loads of clothes and taken care of the chickens.  Ha!   There is no such thing as no work when I am at home unless I am sick and even then I do things.   The rest of the weekend we are going to be on the road again.

Thursday we left on a rainy day to drive to Athens, Ohio.  Just for a drive and  Ohio University is there so we figured there would be some neat things to see and do there.  We drove through rain almost the entire way. The route we chose was rather boring, so we got off it and onto another highway that was much more scenic.   But wouldn’t you know, we saw only one antique store and didn’t stop along the way.  Now I wish we had, because our whole trip we saw no antique stores that looked the slightest bit interesting.  We did stop at a little fabric store.  A man was standing in the door with rain pouring out of a gutter right over the door. But I was determined to go in so we sloshed through the rain and under the gutter into the little shop.  When we got inside, it looked like a building site with unfinished walls and ladders standing around. “We are remodeling,” the man told us.  There were a few quilts on the wall, a room with a quilting machine with a quilt in progress on it and nothing much else.  In another room there were about four shelves of fabric.  Or partial full shelves.  But among all the rather old fabric I found some Pamkitty fabric.  Really pretty and the price was right so I bought five yards of it for backing for a quilt.   So it wasn’t a total waste.  The man was really nice, but I could tell he was out of his element cutting and folding yards of fabric.  When he was trying to fold the fabric, he was more or less wadding it up and I just jumped right in there and showed him how to fold the fabric neatly.   Having had a quilt shop at one time, I have folded thousands of yards of fabric for people.  He seemed kind of relieved I did it.  It is his wife’s store and she is an RN and was at work, so he was being put to work for her.

He apologized profusely about the leaking gutter and I hope that’s on his fix it list because it will deter some people less determined than myself to enter his store when it’s raining.

On we drove through pounding rain.  Sometimes visibility was almost nil.    It made us remember one time when we were in New York and I wanted to go to this quilt shop miles away from where we were staying and we drove through much the same kind of rain storm.   And that quilt shop was rather a disappointment when we got there!   David has driven through rain, storm, hail, tornado and snow to get me to a quilt shop.  That’s part of the reason our marriage has lasted so long.  He’s a great husband.

We got to Athens later than we thought we would.  We found a little restaurant the lady at the motel where we were staying recommended and we were not disappointed.  A few days ago I got a craving for fish and we could not think of a single place in our town that served good fish except Red Lobster and we aren’t enamored of Red Lobster so we didn’t get fish.  This restaurant had grilled tilapia on a bed of rice pilaf and it was delicious!   Flaky and not fishy tasting and just the best fish I have tasted for a long while.  There is a restaurant on the river in Chattanooga, Tennessee that serves the best catfish, but it is only open certain days and we have only managed to hit it at the right day a couple of times while on our travels.

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See, it was still raining.

Not wanting to go back to the motel and spend the rest of the evening, we decided to go to a movie and we saw where the new Spider-Man was showing at the local theater.  When we got there, the sign outside showing all the movies said that Spider-Man didn’t start until the next day.  We chose another movie, but when we went inside we found that they were showing Spider-Man!  Yay!    So we bought tickets and popcorn and drinks and went inside. The theater was lit hardly at all and I couldn’t see one step in front of the other and we always sit at the very tip-top seats, if we can,  and we slowly walked up the steps. I couldn’t even see the seats it was so dark.   Finally got seated and the theater slowly filled up until it was filled to capacity.  I will tell you, the movie did not disappoint and was very exciting.  I will never look at the Washington monument the same ever again and don’t know if I would ever take a ferry to the Statue of Liberty now!  Ha.   They showed a preview of the new Jumanji  movie coming out and it looked hilarious and is on our list of movies to see.

Athens is a pretty little college town with houses built on hills.  I love old houses and the town was full of them, but because it was raining so hard the entire time we were there, I got very few pictures.   We drove around and looked at the sights.  There is an old asylum in town that you can go through, but it was not opened and we didn’t have the time anyway so we didn’t tour it.   There are walking trails all over and I would have loved to have walked them, but again, rain.

So early the next morning we got up and went in search of donuts.  We hardly ever eat donuts at home, but when we vacation we always look for donuts.  I know. They are fattening, full of sugar and down right bad for you, but we still love them once in a while.  We were going to go into a Kroger to get some when David spotted a real donut shop.  We went inside and they had lots of yummy looking donuts, but I got my usual, Boston crème and David got his usual, jelly filled and with my cup of coffee, we sat down to eat.  I was just finishing a bite when this couple sat down beside us.  Suddenly the most horrible smell hit my nose. Now David does not have a good sense of smell, but even his nose wrinkled up.  I whispered, “Where is that smell coming from?”  It was unlike any smell we both had ever smelled.  The couple sitting next to us looked perfectly clean and nice, but, the smell was definitely coming from them.  I gagged down the bite in my mouth and said, “Let’s leave,” so we gathered the rest of our food and drink and went to the car.  “What was that?” I asked.  “I don’t know, but it was the worst smell I have ever smelled,” replied David.  Take skunk smell and triple its strength and that is what that smell seemed like.  I really would have liked to know what that couple came in contact with.

We drove down the highway and found a nice rest stop with picnic tables and finished our donuts.   It was more fun that way anyway.

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I love to picnic and would eat more of our meals outside if I could.

So on we drove toward home taking a different route again and this route was wonderful.

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For a great deal of the way we had the road almost to ourselves. Through little towns where American flags waved on lamp posts.   Past old houses built along the Ohio River almost a century or more ago.

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I love old houses. I like to think of the people who lived there in long ago days.  I hope people will continue to preserve them because most of the houses built today are nothing compared to these old timers.  Built solidly to last and they have.  I don’t think a lot of the houses being built today will be around in another hundred years.

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This town was very interesting and full of history.  This tells of some Welsh travelers along the Ohio River whose women folk may have cut the boats loose when they landed because they were travel weary and wanted to settle some place. I like to think that is what really happened and that the menfolk were disgruntled that they lost their boats, but knew they had to stay in one place.  Good for those women!  They found a great place to settle.

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A monument to all the local men who had died in wars around the world.

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I’m not much for getting my picture taken, but David wanted a selfie of us, so here we are!

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Impatiens planted in planters and hanging baskets all over the town. It was all so pretty.

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An old G.C. Murphy store. Haven’t seen one of those in a long time.  They were sort of the precursor to Wal-mart.

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Barges carrying loads down the Ohio River.   David and I both think it would be fun to have  a houseboat and travel the rivers of our country.

We drove through more rain but it stopped for a little while and we decided to visit Ulysses Grant’s home and former school.  Ulysses Grant was a general for the Union army during the Civil War and became president of the United States several years afterward.

We went inside the house and there was a man standing in another room and I said, “Hello,” and he said he would be with us in a minute.  It sounded like he was talking to someone.  I looked at the visitor book and according to it, David and I were only the fifth and sixth persons who had visited that day.  While we waited, I snapped pictures.

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There is a name for this type of picture, but I cannot think what it is. It is cut from paper.

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A door that appears to go to the upstairs.  It was quite a nice home.  Rather extravagant for the day I would say.

Anyway, we waited and waited and the man kept talking and finally we decided to leave.  We drove over to the school house site.

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We didn’t go in and as we were running late and wanted to get home before dark.

David asked me as we were leaving Grant’s home, “Did you see that sign that said, no pictures?”  No, I didn’t.  Whoops.  You are looking at contraband photos of Grant’s home.

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I wonder if Grant was groomed to be a soldier?  I haven’t read a lot of history about him, but maybe I will now.   Here he is as a fine looking young lad.

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And how I remember him from history books. He always looked a little unkempt  to me.

So on we drove through Cincinnati where the rain was once again coming down in sheets and I turned on the radio and the announcer was telling how there were high winds, damaging hail and rain going through Cincinnati.  Well, of course it was. We were driving through!  We have driven through two tornadoes, countless rain storms, snow, sleet and hail.  Nothing stops us.  But I must say, it was rather harrowing and I know there were times David was driving on a wish and a prayer.  But we made it through and got home safely.

Before I go, I will mention the Fourth of July.  We gathered with a few friends at our church parking lot where we have front row seats to the fireworks across the street.   We are a group who like to play with fire.  Someone brought lanterns and the menfolk were lighting them while the womenfolk held them.

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Up and away.  There were lanterns going up from several parts of the city.  I think it ought to be a city wide challenge next year to see how many lanterns we can set adrift.   I must say, it was better than the fireworks show for me.

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The radio station that provided the music chose the most perfectly awful music to play for the fireworks.  Hardly patriotic and some were inappropriate for children to hear.   It kind of spoiled the fireworks for me.   I am hoping next year, since it is on our church’s grounds, that we play gospel music and real patriotic music for those to hear around us.    After all, we are to be a light in the darkness.

So David and I have two more days of celebrating our anniversary.  Hoping to get into some antique shops and we are going to places where the show “Good Bones,” is shot to look at some of the houses that have been renovated.  Two women formed a company and are taking one house at a time to redo, to revitalize certain parts of Indianapolis and they got their own show on HGTV. It’s become one of our favorites.  If I get pictures, I will share them.

Here’s to long marriages, traveling in the rain and the 4th of July.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

A Most Excellent Weekend

  Last weekend was David’s birthday.   He had the whole weekend off so we made plans. 

First of all, Friday, his birthday, we spent most of the day in front of the television watching the presidential inauguration.  This election in the states has been like none other I can ever remember.    But now, we have a new president and we celebrated it because we live in a free country where we can elect a new president every four or eight years and the country doesn’t fall apart.  Or at least, I hope it doesn’t.  Some people are taking it pretty hard, which I don’t understand because I have lived under several presidents I was not fond of, but they were my president and I lived with it.   Anyway, I enjoyed all the pomp and circumstance of the ceremony. Loved seeing what all the women were wearing.  Loved the music. Well, most of it.  Loved the parade.  The high school band in my town played in the parade.  They were asked to play for Vice President Mike Pence, who is from Indiana, at another venue before inauguration day.   It was an exciting time for them, I am sure.  Something they will remember all their lives

David and I enjoyed the day and later, I took him out for dinner where he got a free dessert for his birthday and then we came home to have cake and ice cream. David is a sugarholic so he was in heaven.

Saturday we got up and drove to Indianapolis to the Indianapolis Home Show.  There were many exhibitors in three buildings, but David and I missed one of the buildings because we didn’t read the program they gave us.  We did that the last time we went to the home show.  You’d think we would learn.  There was so much to see, but it was very crowded.  In one booth I found the table I want for my shop or at least what I want my shop table to look like.

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This one cost ten thousand dollars!!!  It had a granite top and a special finish, but I didn’t think it was that special.  David can make one that looks like this for a whole lot less than this one costs, but he knows what I want now and has a picture of it.  His may not have drawers either, but that’s okay.   I don’t think our whole kitchen remodel cost as much as this table.  There were a lot of exhibitors, a lot of window displays and outdoor furniture and patios and flowers.

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Planted just for this show.

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Forsythia.

There were birdhouses for sale, pots and pans for sale, mops for sale with people demonstrating them.   I bought a new toy.

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A steamer.  Actually, I bought me more work.  A note to whoever has a steamer.  Don’t use it on wood floors or laminate floors. They say you can, but my son-in-law sells flooring and he said that steamers will ruin them very quickly. Glad he told me because the salesman did say I could use it on wood and laminate, both of which I have.

We spent much of the day at the show and afterward went to our motel where we were staying the night.   Then we went to Olive Garden where David got another free dessert for his birthday.   And our weekend was not over yet.

Sunday we lazed around and then drove to Nashville.

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Driving down the hill into Nashville.  We were meeting some family for dinner.   When we got into the restaurant the waitress immediately told us they were out of rice and cornbread!  Well, we hadn’t even looked at the menu yet.  My son said he wanted the fish with rice and a huge order of cornbread!    The food was good and the company was even better.

Then we went to our daughter’s house to visit.

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The men went outdoors and shot guns.

The women stayed inside and played with these.

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Golden retriever puppies. Two boys and two girls.  That’s their mother, Lily.

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And this is their daddy, Oliver.

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“I did nothing.”

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How cute is this?  They are going to keep this one since he was born on our grandson’s birthday.   They named him Farley.

David and I walked outside and found this.

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What is this, you say?  Looks like a pile of trash, doesn’t it?  Oh, no.

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Come closer and see.

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Just a hole in the ground, you say?  It’s a hideout, built by our grandsons and some of their friends.

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Complete with a mailbox!

David and I walked down the hill by our property and on to another property that is for sale on the mountain.

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The man who owned all the property had originally wanted several houses built around a cul-de-sac.  We walked back and around the cul-de-sac with our grandsons.  I love being on the hill.  It’s so peaceful up here and even in the dead of winter I think it is beautiful.  There is a log cabin for sale by here that we looked at.  We have pondered selling our house and building a house on the hill, but it would be a twenty mile drive to doctors, dentists and our church and we are not sure we want to make that move, yet.   Who knows?   We are open to change.  I told our grandson that we might sell our house and he said, “But, I like your house.”  Okay, we won’t sell it until he’s grown.  So many happy memories in our home.

We finally came home tired, but happy that we had such a nice weekend and decided we need to get away more often.  My birthday is coming up in March.  Another trip?  Hmmmm.

Here’s to birthdays and puppies.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quiltin’ and Knittin’

This last week has been a productive week for me. I had all kinds of energy and put it to good use.   I made an entire quilt for Valentine’s Day.   I haven’t been quilting much since I discovered the joy of knitting socks.  I have become as much a yarn fanatic as I am a fabric fanatic.   I just received more yarn a few days ago and already have two pairs of socks almost knitted.

But, back to my quilt.  I have many old quilt magazines and I enjoy looking through them on occasion and a quilt caught my eye that I was sure I wanted to make.

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It came from this magazine.

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And this is how long I have had this magazine!

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And this is the finished quilt.  I love it.  I just put the last stitches on the sleeve on its back so that I can hang it.

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I dipped into my stash of red and pink fabric and I love how each heart turned out.

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And this is the backing. I can’t remember where I got this fabric, but it was probably in some western state with all the little cowboys and cowgirls on it.

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Very vintage looking.  This was an easy quilt to make and I got it finished quickly, which I loved.

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You corralled my heart.  Love it.  Looks like a Valentine I might have received when I was a school girl.

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It took a lot of pins to pin it together, but nothing like a king size quilt takes which takes hundreds and I have to crawl around on my hands and knees on the floor to pin it.  I have asked(begged) David to build me an extra big table for my shop on which  I could lay a king sized quilt to be pinned.    He says he will do it this Summer.   I am planning on doing some remodeling in my shop, painting and moving things, so Summer would be a good time to get a new table.

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Since I was in my shop and had some extra squares laying around I made a couple of pin cushions since mine are looking a little raggedy.

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Looks like a porcupine, doesn’t it?  And speaking of animals.  We had crescent rolls for dinner last night and one looked very much like an animal.

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Does anyone see a walrus in this, or is it just me?

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I love this yarn so much.  Whoever gets this pair of socks, I want to borrow them! Ha!

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Using up some of my yarn, I have knitted some patchwork socks.  These look a little wonky right now because I haven’t blocked them, but I do love how they turned out. Notice, I say, “love” a lot.  We kids use to say to each other in school, “Well, if you love it so much, why don’t you marry it?”    Yes, we did say that to each other.   I still say it once in a while.

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We(David) finished the puzzle. I liked working on the colored pieces, but when we got to the white pieces I left them all to David. He’s like a little dog with a bone when he has a project like this to complete. He would sit at this for hours looking for pieces. Kept him out of trouble.  I must find another puzzle to do.

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From Maine lobsters, which, by the way, true story,  I never ate one lobster in Maine when we were there.  Something I have always regretted.  Maybe if we drive to Nova Scotia like we want to, we will go through Maine again and I will eat lobster.

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To the Golden Gate bridge, which we have driven over. It really is a beautiful sight.

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Michigan cherries.  If you ever get the chance to be in Traverse City during the cherry festival, do it.  It is so much fun.  David and I honeymooned in Traverse City during the festival.  Got stopped by a policeman for running a red light.  Ate a lot of Burger Chef hamburgers. Anyone remember Burger Chef?   The Burger Chef in Traverse City had hamburger buns that tasted like homemade and we ate them every, single day while there.  There were some awesome French fries at the festival, too.  We watched otters play in the downtown zoo.  I doubt it is still there.  We have a road named after our family in Traverse City. Craig Road.  At one time only Craigs lived on it, but I don’t think that’s the case now.  We slept on David’s uncle’s boat one night and watched fireworks on the bay.  I have very fond memories of Michigan, and Traverse City especially.

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Mount Rushmore.  We have been there a couple of times. The last time we were there they had a special program for veterans and asked all the veterans to come up on stage.  I was so proud to see David up there as they sang patriotic songs.   Love Mount Rushmore.

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Texas blue bonnets.  We were in Texas, Fredericksburg, a little over a year ago.  The blue bonnets weren’t blooming then, but I think it would be a sight to see. While in Fredericksburg at Wildseed  Farms I bought this poster.

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It has a lot of different butterflies on it.  I am going to Hobby Lobby this week and see if I can get it framed.  I’ve been moving it around and worry that it will get torn or damaged.  I have a wall just waiting for it.

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The puzzle even had a rooster on it.  Chickens seem to follow me everywhere. Speaking of chickens, a friend came up to me in church last Sunday with a big bag and handed it to me and said, “Enjoy.”    I was so excited, I looked inside and there was a box and I ripped it open and here is what was inside.

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A chicken night light. OMIGOSH!!!!  I love it.  It now has a place of honor in my kitchen where I can see it every single day. Thank you, Nancy.  It was so sweet of you.  It looks reddish in this picture, but it is more yellow.

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I bought this kit years ago and came across it a few weeks ago.

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I am working on it. It’s supposed to be a wall hanging, but I am going to make a pillow.  I will show it to you after it is done.

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We have been having a few Spring like days.  The ground smells like Spring and the buds look ready to burst, which I hope they don’t do as we will have more freezing temperatures.  This is a bud on a little lilac bush.

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A bud on one on my magnolia trees.  I just planted this one last Spring. We have an older one that was planted before we built our new porch.

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It will have lots of blossoms on it this Spring.   One year when our oldest son was in kindergarten, the school had a science fair, so I took him outside and we collected branches from different flowering bushes and shrubs and put them in jars of water to watch them burst into bloom. Our son showed all these branches at the science fair and got a blue ribbon.

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There are still some green plants in my garden that will stay green all winter, but don’t ask me what this is right now. I’ll tell you when it blooms.

Now I am going to tell you a deep, dark secret about myself.  Since I let it all hang out here(although there are some things I will never tell since my children read this blog.)   I do not like to dust.  Really hate it, actually.  We live in this old one hundred year old house that seems to produce dust in bushel baskets.   I do try to keep a clean house, but every once in a while I find a spot that makes me say to myself, “What happened here?”   For the last couple of weeks when I ran the dryer, I kept smelling something like it was hot.   And I noticed that the laundry/bathroom seemed to always need dusting.   Then when I was taking a shower I noticed this huge cobweb on the wall and said to myself, “What in the world!”  Then I decided to check behind the dryer and found that the pipe that runs to the outside and sends the lint away was disconnected from the dryer.   I told David about it and he said, “Oh, yeah, I noticed that a few days ago.”  What!?!?!?  Well, just suffice it to say I wasn’t happy about the situation.  So, I spent most of a morning cleaning out from behind the dryer, washing the floor and baseboards, cleaning the walls and wiping down the dryer.  Then when David got home he brought in the shop vac and finished cleaning behind the washer and I washed the floor behind it and the walls. Found several Decon boxes under there and a Terro bottle. Terro kills ants by the way.   David also found one of my paintbrushes.   Anyway, I think we dodged a tragedy here because lint is very flammable and who knows what would have happened if the dryer had overheated.  So I thank God for watching over us.   We have had a couple of near misses through the years that could have turned into tragedies like the time the furnace man came to clean our furnace and the chimney where the gases went up through was so clogged with dirt and leaves that he told us we were lucky we had not all died from carbon monoxide poisoning.  We had not lived in the house very long before that and didn’t even know the flue had to be cleaned out in the basement!  Now I make sure it is checked.  Anyway, after the bathroom/laundry room was all clean I rearranged it.  We are planning on remodeling both bathrooms this year, but after we got all done and I looked at this bathroom, I was quite pleased with it.  All we want to do in there now is take out the old tub and shower around and have it all tiled.

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This little dresser has been in hiding in the bathroom and I brought it out where it can be seen and I like it very much.    The new tiled shower will be on the opposite wall from this.  We hope to remodel our upstairs bathroom which was put in in the 1950″s we think.  New sink and cabinets. I love the tub in there.  It is almost long enough for me to lie down in.

Well, I have rambled on long enough.  Looking forward to the presidential inauguration this Friday. So glad we live in a country where we can change leaders without too much distress.

By the way, that policeman who stopped us for running a red light while we were on our honeymoon, just gave us a warning after we told him we had just gotten married. Thank you Mr. Peaceman.  Appreciate you didn’t give two stupid kids a ticket that day.  Bye.

 

 

 

Hither and Yon

Another eventful week.  Veteran’s Day morning was spent at our youngest grandboys’ school where there was a Veteran’s Day celebration.  I had to get up way before my wakeup time, but I managed to do it. How did I get up so early for years and years?  Getting kids ready for school.  Sending David off to work and sometimes me just getting home from work.  When I cleaned our church years ago, I would go in at two o’clock in the morning and clean until I had every bit of that church clean and come home in the late morning and go to bed.  It really messed up my sleeping schedule.  I am finally on an eight or nine hour a night sleep schedule that seems to work well for me.

Anyway, this isn’t about me sleeping.  It’s about the Veteran’s Day celebration.  All the veterans were met at the door and asked to wait to be seated in the cafeteria.  The rest of us went to get seats.

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This is our daughter, the mother of our youngest grandboys.

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The veterans came in.  I think David was the oldest one and probably served longer than any of the other men.  Thirty-seven years in the army National Guard.

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There he is again.  Or is that Santa Claus?  That little boy is thinking, “I’m sitting right in front of Santa Claus!”

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This is the school principal. They make them young nowadays.  She gave a little talk and introduced the veterans, the pianist and this boy who played taps.  He goes to the school.

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Taps always sends a chill down my back.

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The children who had a veteran there were asked to come stand with them.   Our two grandboys there.

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Although they don’t look too thrilled to be there, our daughter said they were real excited about the day.

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Each class sang a patriotic song.

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One of the songs they sang was Amazing Grace.

The younger classes had made cards for all the veterans and David got a handful.

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This is the  one our grandson made for his grandfather.  It is hanging on our refrigerator.

We walked through the halls of the school looking at all the things on the walls.  It always amazes me how talented children are.

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This wall of quilts  caught my eye.

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This was quite a project.

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Minions always show up when you least expect it.

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It was a very nice morning, but we had places to go and other things to see so we said, “Good-bye,” and off we went.

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David at the wheel, we were going to northern Ohio to a Folkart and Antique show.  I read about it on Facebook a while back and said I would like to go, so we went.

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Over the rivers and through the woods.

To a tiny town called Peninsula.  The show was held in this building.

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Inside were lots of beautiful handmade things.  All kinds of treasures and a few antiques.

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I bought this in honor of our next president.

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And this because I collect Santa Clauses.

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And this because the man who had the booth literally put it in my hands and said I needed it.  Like two heads, but I bought it.

Because sometimes serendipitous things happen to us, there happened to be an estate sale in town.

 

At this log cabin.

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On this busy street.  Ha.

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Plus the log cabin was for sale and all its contents.  It had belonged to an antique dealer who was quite the collector of primitives.  The cabin was stuffed and everything was for sale.  And this was the second week they were doing it.

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Signs telling us we must behave ourselves.

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See that green chair in the corner?  It was twenty dollars and I am crazy about old chairs, but we didn’t buy it.  We went back the next day to see if it was still there, but it had a sold sign on it.  Always buy something when you first see it, because it will probably be gone next time. Oh, well.

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This room had stacks of really old, but beautifully kept quilts.  There were so many things to see that I forgot to take many pictures,  but it really was amazing what one man can collect in a lifetime and now, it’s all being sold.

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There was a forgotten little garden outside with the cutest picket fence.

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We saw this sign while driving around.  Thought I might try making one like it.

After we were finished at the cabin, we looked for some other antique stores and quilt shops.  We were directed to the town of Seville, Ohio by one quilt shop owner who told us there were a lot of antique stores there.  And wouldn’t you know it? Another serendipitous moment because all the stores in town were having a pre-Christmas sale! And, yes, there were several antique stores.  Really good ones. With good prices.

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Ummmm?

And here are some of our treasures we purchased.

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Vintage Christmas tablecloths.

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Vintage sewing paraphernalia.

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Cute little clothespins with a clothesline.

 

 

 

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Vintage children’s books.  I love the graphics in them.

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A Jim shore Santa Claus at a VERY reasonable price.

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Some of the stores even had pretty bags.  I am not throwing this one away.

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We got this little lampshade back at the cabin, I forgot to show it.  But isn’t it adorable and only one dollar.

Tired and hungry we ate at this restaurant that night where I had the best penne pasta with Alfredo sauce and shrimp that I have ever tasted.  With crusty bread, it was a very delicious meal.  They also do carry out because the night before we ordered food at our motel and I had a wonderful turkey sub sandwich which was so big, I could only eat half of it.  We brought it home and the dogs had a real treat with the rest of it.

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Anyway, this was a really good restaurant. Good service too.

So coming home the next day, we took mostly back roads.  We saw a sign that said, “covered bridge,” so of course, we had to check it out.  Remember the Big Cedar?  We drove and drove and drove and David said, “This isn’t going to be like the Big Cedar and nothing is going to be there, is it?”  But, there was a perfectly nice covered bridge and several people were there.  Men were fly fishing in the river going under it.  We walked across it and spent some time taking pictures.

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We were surprised that the fall colors were still so brilliant this far north of us.

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We’ve traveled many roads together.  Some of them have been bumpy and hilly and some have been smooth, but we have been over them together and that is all that matters in the end.   It was a wonderful trip and I really hated to see it end knowing we won’t be going anywhere until next year, but we have such wonderful memories.

Hope you are making memories or remembering fond things in your past. Bye.

 

 

 

 

Riding a Train

It had always been a dream of mine to travel on a train.  I’ve taken day trips on trains, but never slept on a train. I thought it sounded so romantic and fun.  Watching old movies I have seen people traveling on trains, sleeping in the sleepers, eating luxurious meals on white table cloths in the dining car and singing songs on the train.    People in those movies wore suits and dresses and hats and seemed to know exactly how to deport themselves on a train.

Well, it’s the twenty-first century.   The train station in Chicago was big and there were long walks carrying our luggage to get to the ticket booth.  Thankfully, there were redcaps who put our luggage on carts and took us to the train or we would still be wandering around trying to find it!

People don’t dress up on the train anymore.  Shorts, tees and jeans were the usual wear  A lot of younger people.  I felt overdressed in a nice top and black pants.

Eating on a Train

Breakfast and lunch was on a first come, first served basis.  I only ate one breakfast while on the train.   You had to make a reservation for dinner.  They said we could pick when we wanted to eat, so when the man came around to get our reservation we asked for 5:30.  ” Oh, no, you can’t eat then,” He said.  “We have 7:30 open.”  Well, since we didn’t have a choice we chose 7:30.  When your time came they would announce it and you would go to the dining car. A walk through several other cars. You would lunge from left to right walking down the aisles of the Coaches hoping you didn’t fall into someone’s lap.  You finally get to the dining car and a very arrogant man with his nose in the air actually snaps his fingers at you and says, “Come, come,” and you run after him where you are sat at a table with complete strangers who are sitting just a few inches away from you.  Thankfully, we were sat with a very nice couple and she and I talked to each other while the men ate.  They were from south of Columbus, Ohio.   The man who waited on us was very nice, but I noticed the man  who had snapped his fingers at us(who I started calling “the Jerk”) waited on people like it was the last thing he wanted to do.  The whole time we were on the train every time I saw him I would tell David, “There goes the Jerk.”  He always seemed to have a smirk on his face.  Anyway, I ate three meals in the dining car.  One time we ate with two ladies who were from Defiance, Ohio where my older brother lives.  They didn’t know him.  They also missed their connecting train because our train sat on the tracks for several hours letting freight cars go by.  It was one’s first train ride and she said it was going to be her last.   I didn’t blame her.  But it wasn’t as glamorous eating on a train as I thought it would be. I just kept waiting for Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, and Rosemary Clooney to come into the dining car and sing “Snow” from the movie White Christmas.

Taking a Shower on the Train

The shower on the train was just down the aisle from our sleepette.  I could not go a whole day without a shower, so I bit the bullet and decided to try it.  Our car attendant told me to be sure the door was completely locked as there had been some people startled in the shower because their door was unlocked.   I did not want that to happen.   I opened the door to the shower and gulped.  How was I to take off my clothes, shower and put clothes back on a semi-wet body?  It was smaller than any closets I have in my house.  A small seat piled with soft, fluffy, white towels, Hm, that was nice.  A little basket full of soaps which smelled very good. That was good. So, I carefully locked the door, checked it twice and proceeded to get ready for a shower.  Once undressed, I turned on the shower. Cold water.  I adjusted the handle. Cold water.  Well, I was undressed and really wanted a shower so I took a cold shower.  Very quickly.  As the train rocked and rolled, so did I in the shower, but I managed to get washed.  Then I had to get out and try to towel off as best I could.  I kept bumping into things, but finally I was ready to dress. Ever try to dress in a two by two foot space?   It’s not easy, but I did it and I did it three times while riding the train.   Thankfully my other two showers I had warm water.

Walking on a train

When we took a trip to Alaska on a ferry we learned how to walk on a boat without falling down. Most of the time the ride was pretty smooth and we could walk very easily, but at times the sea was rocking and so were we.  People would walk like drunken sailors.  Well, on the train, you pretty much walk like that all the time.  Lunging back and forth as the train rolled along.  We had to go through several cars to get to the snack car where we purchased something to eat when we didn’t want to eat in the dining car or to the lounge car, where we sat and watched the scenery go by.  We walked through the coach cars where people who didn’t have sleepettes would be laying across their seats covered up sleeping.  I really did not want to fall into one of their laps.  You learn to sway with the cars and hold on to anything you can grab to keep yourself upright.  When we got off the train, David said his legs were still walking like he was on the train.  It took him a day to get his “land legs” back.  Same thing happened to him on the ferry. It took him a couple of days to walk right on land.  It didn’t bother me at all.  I was just glad to get off the train.

Sleeping on a Train

I always thought that  sleeping on a train would be so relaxing and fun.   To get ready for bed, first we had to pull the two seats together to make a lower bunk and then pull down the upper bunk. Poor David slept in the upper bunk because he can sleep about anywhere.  You are given two very thin blankets and pillows with hardly any stuffing in them.  We didn’t know you could ask for extra blankets and pillows the first night. We got ready for bed.  I wore clothes to bed because the bathroom was down the aisle and I didn’t want strangers seeing me in my pjs.  That first night I froze all night.  I didn’t know we could turn on a heater.  I heard David snoring above me while I tossed and turned.  Thankfully, I had my Kindle with me and could read.  I watched the stars and just lay there listening to the train wheels clickety clack.   I will tell you the second night with extra blankets, the heater turned on and two pillows, I slept very well. Maybe if we had been on the train for a third night I would have slept like a baby.   It wasn’t like sleeping on the ferry, though, where I think I slept the best I have ever slept with the boat rocking gently and being in a warm cocoon in my little bunk.  It was heaven.  Anyway, sleeping on a train was an experience and I hope I haven’t made anyone not want to try it.

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This is my last post about our trip.  Next, Grandchildren!  Bye.

 

 

 

 

Little Towns and Up a Mountain

We continued our drive up the Olympic Peninsula.  So many beautiful sights.  Not much traffic, which we love. At times we seemed to be on the road all by ourselves.  Coming in the off season made our trip much more enjoyable.  I am sure in the Summer the highway is much busier.

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This is Juan De Fuca.  It is connected to the Puget Sound.  This scenery reminded me so much of Alaska, so if you cannot get up into Alaska, you might like this trip up the Olympic Peninsula. This view actually looked exactly like the view we had in Wasilla, Alaska from our motel and just two blocks down the street was Sarah Palin’s house.

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Just to prove we were there together we did a selfie!  I look at this picture and think,  “Wow, is my man handsome!”

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We drove out the northeast tip of Washington and found this little town  This fish character was in town also, wearing athletic shoes.  Here she is wearing skates.

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A little town far from nowhere.  Of course we drove around it.  Not much there and it was hilly, but they sure do have a beautiful view from any of those houses.

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Views like this.  I could live here.  It’s cool and mountainous and there’s water.  Everything I love.

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On we drove. If you are a hiker, there are all kinds of trails to take in these woods.

Then we came to Port Angeles.  A beautiful town right on the water.

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Views like this all over town.

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But t was getting late and we had miles to go before we slept so we drove on.

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Past little general stores. We stopped in and this store had everything one would need.  Since it is probably the nearest store for some people, it’s a good thing they do.

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Past things like this.  People are wonderful to provide us with these things to see.

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We saw a lot of these signs all over.  I was pleasantly surprised.   And that is all the politics I will talk about!

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We reached our destination for the next two days, Port Townsend.  Who wouldn’t love a town that has bunting across its streets?

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And gorgeous Victorian houses everywhere.

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And whimsical things like this. Shoe forms used as yard art.

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I couldn’t get enough of these houses.

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Then I met this man on the street while we were shopping.  He had what was called a
“free speech corner,” where signs of all different political persuasions, religious beliefs and no beliefs were written on boards for all to read. I thought you could pay to write your own sign, so I was going to do it, but when I got to him, I found out he wrote them all.  I talked to him for a while.  He was really interesting.  We talked about Jesus and free speech and why do people get so angry with each other when they disagree.   He had a sign I really liked, but because I know it would probably insult people, I won’t put it here on my blog, but you can find it on my Facebook page.   We are in a time in our country where free speech is being squelched and I believe we need to guard each other’s speech, whether we agree with each other or not, because to lose our free speech would be a tragedy.

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Of course I shopped and we stopped in at this perfectly darling little garden store.  It was set right in a corner and was tiny inside, but packed with lots of wonderful things.  I bought a calendar and a rooster towel.  We shopped in several other stores. There was a great bookstore and a store with outdoorsy clothes that I loved and bought some Christmas gifts.  I could have stayed in this town another day or two, but we only a few more days before we were to get back on the train, so after two days we set off for Mount Rainier.

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David had reserved two nights at this lodge.

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It was a typical lodge with a fire in the fireplace and big comfy chairs to sit on with antlers and deer heads on the wall.  Sorry for the deer.  David said this was the quietest place we had ever stayed in.  And it was true.  You didn’t hear many people talking. Of course that might be because there were just six rooms filled the first night.   Off season, you know.

After a good night’s sleep we drove to Mount Rainier.

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They were working on the roads.

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Through more tunnels.

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Fall foliage in all its beauty. Up, up we went.   Out my window, it was straight down.  We have driven up Mount Rainier two times before, but always during the Summer. This was a whole different experience.  Very little traffic.

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Fog in the mountains.

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There’s David right by a cliff again.  He flirts with danger.

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Past mountain streams.

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It was getting chillier the farther up we went.

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Past glacier fed rivers.

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Up, up. My ears were popping.

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Yes, we were down there.

Then we were high enough that there was snow!  They were expecting from one to five inches that night.  Probably a good thing we drove up when we did.  We might not have made it up another day.

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It looked like a Christmas card.

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Made me so glad we have snow in Indiana.  I love snow.

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Always on the look out for bears, but we saw none this trip.

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There’s that handsome man again.

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I would love to have a house on a mountain facing the sea.  With a field of horses and five dogs and all the chickens I want.

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Which reminds me we saw this Road sign.

Down the mountain once again we ate at this restaurant.

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Everything had bears on it. The napkins, the walls, etc. The food was very good.  We also ate at this lodge during our stay.

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There was only one other couple eating  there.  The food was good, but I think the server was new or just very nervous.   But he did a good job.

We ate  at one other place at the foot of Mount Rainer at another lodge where we had the best blackberry cobbler and ice cream.   We also had chili and chicken and rice soup.   They know how to cook in Washington.

But, vacations must come to an end and we had to drive up to Seattle to  meet the train heading east.  We stayed in the town of Snohomish.  David and I both want to come back there with our car because they had such wonderful antique stores.   We couldn’t take all we wanted to buy back on the train.

Our final day was spent in Seattle where we found a yarn shop where I bought more yarn for more socks.  Then we ate at a Cheesecake Factory before we headed to turn in our rental car and get to the train station.  My next post will be about riding and eating on the train and taking a shower on the train.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

Westward Ho!

David and I took a trip the last couple of weeks.  We decided to take the train to Seattle, Washington, rent a car and drive the Olympic Peninsula and visit Mount Rainier.  We began our journey by driving to Chicago to meet the train.  Let me tell you.  Union station needs to modernize.  Once you park your car in their garage, you have to haul all your bags that you packed(with clothes I ended up never wearing)  to the station through hallways and up stairs. The people who worked there couldn’t have been nicer. We were put in a lounge for all the other sleeper car people where they had finger foods and cold drinks and even wine if you wanted it.  We didn’t.   Then they called us and asked if we needed a redcap who would take us and our baggage to the train.  David chose at that time to head the wrong way and I was heading the right way and I had to put down my baggage and I ran shouting to him like a crazy woman, down a hall, that he was going the wrong way!    He was in the line with the people who were walking to the train and it was quite a far distance to walk.  Finally got him and we got on the little cart and the redcap took off like a bat beeping her horn sending people scurrying out of our way or get hit.  I am glad we didn’t have to walk to the train because we would never have found it.   It was a good distance from the lounge.

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Chicago was foggy that day.

 

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We rode the Empire Builder.

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In the sleeping car.

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This was our home for two days and two nights.  A pull out bed and a bunk bed.  Yes, we are crazy.  It was cramped, but we managed. One of the rooms down from us was just a little larger and four big men were all sleeping in there.  I don’t know how they did it.

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We read, did fill-in books, and played Solitaire on our computer.  We did not have internet on the train.   There was a lounge car, but it really wasn’t as comfortable as our own little room.  So I spent a good bit of time in it with David bringing me ice, water and crackers.  I called it my “train diet.”

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We ate in the dining car.  Well, David did mostly because I didn’t like their food that well.  I will write a separate blog about eating in a diner on the train.    This is my plate.

 

 

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This was David’s. He really liked the steak dinner they served.  It does look like he licked his plate!

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This was our car attendant going out.  Connie.  She’s getting married next April.

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We rode through our beautiful country.

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Through flatlands and hills.  Mountains and by lakes and rivers.

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By woods where the trees’ leaves were changing color.

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The weather was glorious.

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Then we got into Washington state.  This is the Puget Sound.

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There were egrets every few feet it seemed and lots of sea gulls, one of my favorite birds. Some people call them flying rats, but I just love them.

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It got cool in our little room  so I put on my hand knitted warm socks.  You knew I couldn’t write a blog without mentioning knitted socks!

We arrived at our destination, rode a taxi to the car rental and got our car for the drive of our life.  Will tell you more about it in the next blog. Bye.

 

 

I’ll Be Back

I have a zillions things to talk about, but I have been kind of busy the past several days.  So much has happened and I have seen so much that I can’t wait to tell you all about it.  Getting on a train for a long journey in a little while, so see you on the other side.  Bye.