Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Thoughts On "The Imitation Game"

My husband and I watched the film "The Imitation Game" this past weekend.  It is the amazing story of Alan Turing and the work done by Mr. Turing and the codebreakers at Bletchley Park during World War II.   The movie is very well done but it is also very sad.  After viewing it, I wanted to know more about the Bletchley Park codebreakers.    I found an article in The Telegraph.  You may read it here.  

I found it interesting to read about each of the characters in the movie.  I especially wanted to know more about Joan Clarke (the role played by Keira Knightly).  Amazingly, this woman was a part of the team and if you think of the sexism during the 1940's, it is incredible that she was allowed to participate at all.

As was typical for girls at Bletchley, (and they were referred to as girls, not women) Clarke was initially assigned clerical work, and paid just £2 a week , significantly less than her male counterparts.

Hey!  Guess what!  I just saw...and this is just one of those little coincidences of life that tickle me...Keira Knightly just had a baby today! 
 "It's always a happy time when babies come"....  Anybody know what movie that comes from?   I am from GEORGIA, if that gives you a hint.

One of the men at Bletchley once spent a sleepless night and came up with a long and amusing palindrome:


(Remember, a palindrome is a word or sentence that reads the same forward and backwards.)

Ha!  I love that!  I will never eat fish & chips in England without thinking of that!

This is photo of the Fish & chips that Richard had in England, the owners of the Fish & Chip shop made this without any breading...but it is still cod and it was very good!


Here is a small photo of Bletchley Park from Wikipedia.  It has become a popular tourist spot, about one hour north of London.  I am not likely to see it, for all the visits I have made to England, the furthest north I have been is...London! 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Land That I Love

Timothy Miller sings "God Bless America" at the Braves home games when they play on Sunday.  (Other times, they play a recorded version of "Take Me Out To The Ballgame".)
Now, I have heard others sing this song but for me, there is no one who can touch the rendition by Mr. Miller.    At the end, when he sings, "My home... sweet ...HOME".. That last note will send chills up your spine, it's wonderful!

"God Bless America" was written by the songwriter, Irving Berlin  who also wrote "Always" and "White Christmas". (It is estimated that he wrote over 1500 songs!) He was a first generation American who appreciated this country and found a way to say it in a song.  I found this quote from his daughter... .

 “I came to understand that it wasn’t ‘God Bless America, land that we love.’ It was ‘God bless America, land that I love.’ It was an incredibly personal statement that my father was making, that anybody singing that song makes as they sing it. And I understood that that song was his ‘thank you’ to the country that had taken him in. It was the song of the immigrant boy who made good.”

In memory of all those who have served under the Stars and Stripes.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Making The BEST of WHATEVER!

We all know the saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade", right?

This past weekend I thought it would be a nice thing to make bread for my husband. ( He has celiac disease and he can only have gluten free bread.)  I have a good recipe but for some reason, the bread never rises very much.  When I began to get all the ingredients together for the bread, I realized that I was out of yeast.  So....a run to the store just for yeast.  Everything was coming along nicely,  but when I put the bread in the oven and took a peek at it...OH NO, the dough was rising WAY too much and was beginning to spill over!!  AHHH!!!
Quickly, I put a pan on the second oven rack and let the dough drip onto it.  Then, I had to get that loaf pan out (getting dough all over the oven, the floor and ME!).  I scooped some of the dough out into a bowl, grabbed a cake pan, greased it and scooped most of the bread dough into the cake pan.
Put the cake pan back into the oven.  I had a look at the bits of dough that that spilled out onto the pan that was on that second rack. Hmm, that looks like bread sticks!   I took them out and turned them over and let them finish baking!  And the dough that I had scooped into the bowl?  I placed teaspoons of it onto a greased cooky sheet and then, sprinkled garlic powder onto them and they became PIZZA BITES1 HA!  I just made it up!  All of it came out beautifully, even the bread!  You would never have known what a disaster it was!

So...."When life gives you overflowing bread dough....make breadsticks and pizza bites!"  (Forgot to say, I also put a bit of cheese on the pizza bites when they had  almost cooked.)  All of this smelled heavenly when my husband came home from work!

And if life knocks you up against the curb, make sure it is lined with cherry blossoms!
Okay, so what is YOUR take on "When life give you lemons, make lemonade?"     Go on, you know you want to tell me!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Denzil Pugh

"Climb Every Large Rock"     If you click on that link, you will read the most wonderful post by Denzil Pugh about Arabia Mountain.   Denzil lived and worked here in Rockdale County for many years but he moved to Dallas, Texas last year after his mother passed away last June.  I received the sad news that Denzil Pugh died quite unexpectedly on May 12th.  (I am not certain of his age, perhaps early 40's? In any case, far too young.)

I think it was John Edwards (Scriptor Senex) who said on his blog that he no longer will say "blogging" friends when he speaks of his fellow bloggers but will simply call them "friends".  I didn't understand the truth of this until I heard this news of Denzil's death. 

I can't tell you how happy it made me when Denzil finally made it to Arabia Mountain. He loved the trails around this area but he had never been to Arabia Mountain. When he finally DID visit there,  you can tell how he was amazed and thrilled by the experience.  Denzil was such a wonderful writer.  Now that I have given you that link, you may read his other posts, all such masterpieces of writing.   He wrote about his mother's death last June and I just went back and read it again and it is just as I remembered it, just incredible that he could write something so perfectly after suffering such a loss. 

He also wrote in the most eloquent way about his Christian faith.  Not preachy about it, just honestly and openly and with perfect sincerity. 

  The last words to the "The Three Bells" are...

  "May his soul find the salvation
Of thy great eternal love".

Happy Trails, Densil, happy trails.

Sometimes, people will arrange the rocks on Arabia Mountain and I always ask Richard to take a photo of them. (They are never left that way for long, someone will always come along and destroy the beauty of it.)   I can't help but think that Denzil Pugh would have stopped and admired this too. 
The flowers that you can see on our local monadnocks (Stone Mountain, Panola Mountain and Arabia Mountain) are truly spectacular.  Somehow, to see them against the background of the rock just sets them off perfectly.   For example, the flowers on the prickly pear cactus are very beautiful...these must be blooming for Denzil.    
Isaiah 35:1King James Version (KJV)
 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose.


Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Lanchester

In loving memory to Derrick, Richard's uncle who died yesterday in England.   May he rest in peace. 
Derrick loved cars and he had a special place in his heart for the   Lanchester . It is a British car that you might not have heard about.   Did you see the movie "The King's Speech"?   Apparently, great care was taken in the filming so as to be true to the real story but they used the Rolls Royce for King George when in reality, he really used Lanchesters as his personal vehicles!

I will miss Derrick's great booming laugh and the way that he called everything "lovely".  I might not have agreed with some of his viewpoints but he was so doggone charming and funny, I didn't care...I could forgive him anything! 

Here's to you, Derrick.  YOU are lovely. I will remember you always.  xx        Cheers!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


London! We were in London in September and I have such fond memories of this exciting city. I really loved walking beside the Thames and over it!  We walked across FOUR bridges and even though it was an overcast day, that really worked in my favor since it made it easier to see things a bit clearer.  One thing, and this was startling to me was the way that the water looked as if it went one way and then, quite the other way.  This is very much the way that Monet painted it.  Perhaps all deep water looks that way, I don't know...I only know that the tide was very high the day that we saw it, and Monet got it JUST RIGHT. 



You can really see the Thames better in a video...so you know Richard has one here for you!  Where were you on Sept. 11, 2014 at 10AM, London time?  Now you know where we were!


Monday, May 11, 2015

We Have Met The Enemy But There Is Hope

Pogo - Earth Day 1971 poster.jpg

Sometimes the truth of life is perfectly expressed in cartoons.
I have been reminded of this famous "Pogo" cartoon lately due to the amount of garbage that I have seen on our local nature trails. (Pogo is meant to be a possum who lives in the Okeefeenokee Swamp which is in Georgia. The cartoonist is Walt Kelly.)
You would think that the exquisitely beautiful Arabia Mountain would garner enough respect that those who climb to the top would be satisfied with the natural beauty of it...but no, we have seen evidence of fires being built in the pits (which CAN support rare plants given the chance) and bits of burnt out firework papers.  Frankly, this disgusts me.  It is believed that Arabia Mountain is ...wait for it...400 MILLION years old.  Let's see, what would man do if presented with something so rare and unique as to defy description?  Yes, let's build a fire on it and roast MARSHMALLOWS! 

Still...there is hope!  Recently, I went on a nature hike with a small group of adults and four children.  I must tell you...the children were wonderful.  They were respectful of the solution pits on the mountain and gingerly stepped around them.   The joy that they experienced when they discovered tadpoles in the pools on top of the mountain was delightful! And when they found a fish that was trapped in one of the tiny pools near the edge of the lake, they were thrilled when they rescued it and returned it to Arabia Lake!
Kids finding fish in small pool at edge of Arabia Lake/they rescued it!


The guided hike was on one of the rainy, cool days in April and I am showing you these photos so that you can see that Arabia Mountain is lovely in every weather and in every season.  Let's keep America beautiful, people!