Category Archives: Travels

The Egg and I and a Trip to England

Does anyone remember the movie, “The Egg and I,”  that starred Fred McMurray and Claudette Colbert?  You have to be really old to remember it although TMC may show it once in a while. It’s about a man and woman who move from the city onto a farm to raise chickens and all the problems they had and all the crazy neighbors they had.  I use to love watching it.  Perhaps you could see it somewhere online.

I’m living a sort of Egg and I life right now.  Raising chickens has been more fun than I could ever imagine.  I feel at one with the chooks.  They are my peeps.  They cluck and I cluck back. They ruffle their feathers and I….well, maybe not.    Now we are reaping the rewards of all the time and money we have spent on them by gathering eggs every day. They are still small, but I live in hope they will get bigger as we go along.  We ate some yesterday for breakfast.


Look at that bright orange yolk.


The store bought egg is on the right.  It was a double yolker however.


We ate our breakfast al fresco by the pool.  Yes, that is Spam on our plates.  I do like a slice or two of Spam occasionally.   Spam has gotten a bum rap.  My doctor is stocking up Spam for the end times he tells me.  If it is good enough for my doctor, it’s good enough for me.


We enjoyed the garden as we ate.


Belle joined us. These are her begging eyes.  Can’t you tell?

The other day I received a wonderful book in the mail.  I found a blog over a year ago written by Susan Branch.  I had never heard of her before that, but I absolutely loved her blog.  She calls all her readers her “girl friends,” and always has something wonderful to write about.  She gave a tea party for the new Prince George for her friends and neighbors.  It was quite something and looked like so much fun.  Anyway, she writes books.  She handwrites them and water colors them and they are just amazing.  They include recipes and sayings and Susan’s outlook on life.  As she says about others, she has the “happy” gene.   Susan and her husband, Joe, took a two month vacation to England last year and she chronicled it in a diary.  They went over on the Queen Mary2 and rented a car and drove all over England.  That is exactly what David and I want to do.

Her diary came out in hardcover just last week and as I had pre-ordered the book, I got mine last week.  It’s signed and everything.  This is a book you cannot read on Kindle.  It is a book you need to hold and smell and leaf through over and over and read excerpts from it and stare at the pictures and read some more.

Susan handwrote the entire book and drew her wonderful water color pictures.  This book is a travel guide of sorts and tells all the places they stayed and what they ate where and how crazy it was to drive on the left side of the road.  David and I did that when we visited the Virgin Islands and David thinks it is easier to drive on the left side of the road instead of the right.  He even said the other day he wished he could find a car with the steering wheel on the right.  My guy is crazy like that.


She called her book A Fine Romance.  It tells how she met her husband after she had pretty much given up ever getting married and her love of the English countryside.


I have read this book and am reading it again.  It’s that wonderful.  If you love England, you will love this book.  Here are some of Susan’s watercolors and pictures from the book.


She loves Beatrix Potter, the author of Peter Rabbit, and visited her home called Hilltop.


She and Joe walked through many fields with sheep in them.


Love these phone booths. Are they really used anymore or are they just for atmosphere now?


They sailed on the Queen Mary2.  There were over three thousand people on the ship.  David and I want to sail across to England, but David said we will probably have to take a freighter.  I’m not sure about sailing on such a big ship.  We will have to see.  We want to go over on our fiftieth wedding anniversary. I really don’t want to fly.

Still picking cucumbers.  Fifteen yesterday and four today because I really didn’t want to look for them.  Also we are getting tomatoes.  They are so good.  Nothing is as good as that first tomato from the garden.

Here’s to English diaries, dining al fresco and laying hens..  Bye.


Epworth Forest Memories or Dave and Kate’s Excellent Adventures Part II

David and I celebrated our forty-fifth wedding anniversary this week.  David took a week’s vacation and we took some short trips and spent lazy days around the house and just enjoyed being together.

One of the things we did was drive north to look for antique stores and fabric shops.  We drove through beautiful countryside with fields of corn and soybeans growing thick and lush.  We saw some barn quilts, alpaca farms and shining lakes.

On this northern trip we drove through the town where my oldest brother use to live.  When I was a little girl, we use to make the drive there to visit and I remember when we went there to see my first nephew after he was born.  I was an aunt when I was five.  My baby brother was an uncle when he was less than four months old.  That is how spread out the children in my family are.

We arrived in North Webster, Indiana where the Methodist camp, Epworth Forest is.  When I was a teen-ager I went to camp there several years.  I wondered how much it had changed.  To my delight it hadn’t changed very much at all.


We couldn’t drive into the actual camp because we weren’t registered to be there, but we drove around the area around the camp.


This is the auditorium where all the campers gathered in the evening for worship services.  It was always packed with teen-agers.  All those hormones in one place.


This is the lake where we swam and boated.  One summer one of my girlfriends and I discovered a rowboat with oars along the lake and took it out rowing without life jackets and me not knowing how to swim at the time.  No one told us we couldn’t take the boat so every day we would go get it and row  out into the middle of the lake by the island.  We always thought about getting on the island, but we were afraid we might get in trouble.  We never thought about the trouble we could get into for stealing someone’s rowboat.  No one ever told us we couldn’t.

There were cute cottages and gardens all around the lake.DSCN6290






I was a Methodist for years, but my husband grew up Baptist so we decided we would try the Baptist church after we had been married for several years and we have been in a Southern Baptist church ever since. But the memories of Epworth Forest will always be with me.


Boats come in at night for worship service.  I would have liked to see this, but we had to continue on.

We stopped at some stores with lake themes and a couple of antique stores and then we headed back south.

Of course I bought some fabric along the way even though I don’t need it.




I am going to make curtains for the upstairs bathroom, but first I have to paint it.  Should I paint it rose or one of the greens in the fabric?


Found this pattern I plan to make to hold my old clothespins.


Saw this VW.  David and I had a VW when we were first married and I loved it.  I’ll take one in this color, please.


My handsome chauffer drove us out of town.  We drove to Peru, Indiana under dark skies, lightening and light rain.  “I don’t think we should stop at any antique stores because it is raining,” David said.  “I’m up for it if you are,” I replied so we looked around town for antique stores.  Not finding any we started out of town on highway Nineteen when  out of the corner of my eye I saw a little brick building with an antique sign on it.  David turned the car around and we went back.  The lady in the store said she had another antique store back in town, so we headed to it.  We saw ambulances, fire trucks and police cars going the same direction we were.  Traffic was going very slowly and we saw flashing lights ahead.  After a long time we finally found the antique store.  It was a really wonderful one.  While I went in, David went out to see what was happening.  The young man in the store was talking on his cellphone about a tornado that had just gone through town.

Tornados evidently don’t stop me from antiquing because I found several treasures while I was there.  We told the young man we were heading out of town on highway Nineteen and he said, “No, you aren’t because it is closed because of the tornado passing through.  There are trees and limbs down all over it.”  He told us a route we could take to get out of town and we took it and left Peru thankful we had stopped at that first store or we may very well have been in the midst of the tornado.

We headed home tired and ready for our bed.  It was a fun trip and it is nice to get away, but home is best.

Here’s to long marriages, church camps and dodging tornados.  Bye.














































and it will come faster than we can turn around.  Here’s to church camps, long marriages and dodging tornados.  Bye.


Weekend Update or Dave’s and Kate’s Excellent Adventure

Before I talk about what happened this weekend I want to show you what I have been doing.  I decided the floor in my shop needed to be repainted so with David’s help I took just about everything out of my shop.  I scrubbed the floor and painted it a dark green.  We then cleaned all the things we had taken out and returned them to the shop.  I love the look of the shop now.  So clean and crisp.






We had this old wash stand that was all rusted and bent and needed some tender loving care.  I sanded it and painted it and then polyurethaned it and now it sits in my shop to hold things.  I love the way it looks now.


While painting the floor I painted around this picture two of my grandchildren had painted  years ago.  I just could not cover it.


I also painted around these handprints of one of my grandsons.  This year my three youngest grandsons will be adding their artwork to my floor.



Now when I am in my shop I can look at my newly painted ceiling and my newly painted floor and sigh with relief all the work is done.  Now all I have to do is sew and quilt and that’s all right by me. Wait, I still have to paint the walls.  But that can wait a while.

Now for our weekend.    My youngest niece graduated this year from high school and Saturday was her open house.  I was looking forward to going and seeing her and my brother and sister-in-law and my other niece who is a veterinarian.  David and I packed up the car for the weekend and away we drove to Ohio.  We go to their house by way of Cincinnati and then it’s a straight shot to Chillicothe.  When we got out of Cincinnati we were driving along the Ohio River.  I said to David, “I don’t remember driving by the Ohio River to get to David’s house.” My brother’s name is also David so don’t get confused.  David reassured me he knew where he was going and we drove along enjoying the beautiful scenery.  We had planned to get there in mid afternoon, but when it got to be three o’clock I said again, “Are you sure we are on the right road?  Nothing looks familiar.”  We had been to Chillicothe several times in the past.  I knew my brother did not live by the Ohio River.  Finally, David stopped at a convenience store and asked this girl how far to Chillicothe and she told him about an hour up the road.  So we drove another hour and got to Portsmouth, Ohio and then I said, “I don’t think we are on the right road.”  “I’ll buy a map at the next service station,” David said.  And he did.

When David came out of the service station carrying the map he said something to me I do not hear very often.  “I was wrong.  You’re right. We are on the wrong road.”  By that time it was about five o’clock and we still had another hour’s drive north to Chillicothe.  The open house would be over before we would get there and I did not have my brother’s phone number with me.  Finally I remembered I had my sister’s phone number memorized and I called her to call my brother to tell him we were lost and that is why we were late.  Then we got to Chillicothe and the road David took to their house had a detour and we didn’t know where to go.  Then my brother called our cell phone and told us where we were and in a few minutes after driving for six hours, we got to my brother’s house.

By that time we were tired, hungry and out of sorts, but we got some food and spent the evening talking about growing up on the farm and all was well.



Then my niece opened the gift we had for her.  A quilt I had made.  She is named after my mother and there were a few pieces of fabric that my mother had had in her stash in the quilt.  I can’t believe she is grown. We didn’t get to see her very often as they live so far away and now she is grown and going off to college in the fall.

We spent the night in a motel and the next morning we got up and started for home.  Now we took the road we should have been on the day before and everything looked familiar.  We passed a place called the Secret Garden where they sold all kinds of garden sculptures and garden art.  They had little buildings all over with things for sell for the garden and a beautiful garden you could walk through.  About that time the batteries in my camera gave out so I only got this picture.


A cute birdhouse that David is going to try to replicate.  Wonder where I could find some of these tiny garden tools?

As we drove along we realized we were near a town that had lots of antique stores and little shops, Waynesville, Ohio, so we stopped in for lunch and walked around looking at all the wares that were for sale.  I found an old garden gate that would look good in my garden and we bought it.  Don’t have a picture though  Our last stop was in Shelbyville, Indiana where there is a Cow Palace where we always buy ice cream when we are passing through.  I got Blue Moon and Butter Pecan in a waffle cone and it was so good.

We finally got home late Sunday afternoon and I ran to check on the chickens.  This was the first time I had ever been away from them overnight and we had left their little door open so they could go in and out.  I was hoping I wouldn’t just find feathers laying around.  They were all just fine and didn’t even miss me.

It was fun to get away.  I love weekends like this and I hope we have a few more this summer.

Here’s to husbands who don’t like to ask for directions, nieces, and enjoying the scenery anyway. Bye