Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Vote! (Rock & Roll Hall of Fame)

Now is the time for all music lovers to vote for the nominees for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!

You have until Dec. 5th  and you can vote EVERY DAY
until then but you can only vote once a day. Oh, and also you can vote for up to 5 artists. Got that? Okay, go here and vote!
Want to know my vote?  I wonder if you could guess? You don't have to, I will tell you!

The Moody Blues, Dire Straits, Kate Bush, The Zombies and Sister Rosetta Tharpe-  these are my choices!

The Zombies

                                                 Sister Rosetta Tharpe

                                                    The Moody Blues

My heart is a bustin' with my love for music! (Sorry, I only just found  the heart's a bustin' bush this year.  It is not quite as colorful since the seeds were almost gone but it made me happy to see it.)

Monarch butterfly visiting our Mexican sunflowers on Oct. 17th!

Monday, October 16, 2017

The Last Detective (Sean Hughes, Rest In Peace)

I watch every single British TV show that I can.  "The Last Detective" starred Peter Davison as "Dangerous" Davies  and  his sidekick, Mod Lewis was played by Sean Hughes, a former stand- up comedian.
Sean Hughes died today.  He was only 51 years old.

The show was very funny but also low key and subtle.  Keep an  eye out for it, if they repeat it here or you could buy the DVD set of the episodes.  You will see how funny those two men are together on The Last Detective.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

New Film About Louis Zamperini! (It Is No Secret-Stuart Hamblen)

If you have been reading my blog for any time, you will know of my admiration for Louis Zamperini.  Most people know of him from the movie "Unbroken".  I read his book  "Devil At My Heels" in 2004 and wrote to him.  He must have received thousands of letters like mine but he personally answered my note to him just as he did to anyone who wrote to him.  While I was pleased that the film was made about him, the main focus was on his childhood, Olympic track experiences and horrific imprisonment in WWII Japanese camps and said very little about his long life. (Mr. Zamperini died in 2014 at the age of 97.)  There will be a new movie released in 2018 and this will tell you the story of his life AFTER World War II in which he attended one of the Billy Graham's crusades in California and completely turned his life around.  After the war and his return to the USA, he suffered for several years with what we now know as PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  Drinking heavily and having terrible nightmares, you can imagine how hard this was not only for himself but also for his loved ones.  His wife Cynthia was able to persuade him to attend a tent revival and to listen to a young preacher from North Carolina in 1949.  (The young preacher was Billy Graham.)  At the same night, other men came forward...there is an article that I found for you which has a photograph of Billy Graham with may read it and see the photo just here.

The man pictured beside Mr. Zamperini is Stuart Hamblen, who was quite well known at the time as a singer, actor, radio show host and SONGWRITER.  (You all must know how much I admire songwriters.)  If you look up him up, it says that he is most well known for the song "This Old House.".  Reading more, you might also see that he wrote the song, "It Is No Secret".   Stuart Hamblen had a friend in the actor John Wayne.  After Stuart Hamblen gave up drinking, John Wayne said to him, "How did you give it up, what is your secret?".  His reply was "It is no secret what God can do".  At that, John Wayne said to him. "Well, that sounds like a song".     From what I have researched on this, this is a true story. It does sound just like John Wayne, does it not? (I love John Wayne, I thought he was a great guy.)

(I also have this being sung by Bill Kenny of The Inkspots. I love this.)

In this new film, the role of Billy Graham will be played by Will Graham, Billy Graham's grandson.  Even though he is not an actor (it will be his first role) I find it interesting to know that he will be in this movie. That makes it a special thing for me. (Seems like I remember that the grandson of Mr. Zamperini was in "Unbroken".  Also, I think that was a nice touch.)

I hope that this new movie will give Mr. Zamperini the proper respect to him and to his Christian faith.  Here is the thing that you might not know, Mr. Zamperini did not like religion to be forced upon anyone.  He was not heavy handed about anything really, rather he seemed to want to have people to be influenced by his example and his life's work.
It is my great hope that this new movie will honor him.  Mr. Louis Zamperini was a man of great faith and joy...I wish everyone could know this.  Why, he went back to Japan and met with his former captors, they were shocked to see him running to them with open arms!  
Once again, the film will be released sometime in 2018.  It will be called "Unbroken: Path To Redemption".  Look out for it.
Wishing for some Fall color right now...this was from a few years ago!  We still have our Mexican sunflowers blooming and our butterflies to enjoy, it will be 80 today! In a few weeks, I will have the autumnal colors and be wishing for butterflies! Laughing at myself!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Butterflies On Radar AND on Mexican Sunflowers

                                           Painted Lady Butterfly

The Painted Lady Butterfly is one of the most widespread butterflies on Earth, it is on every continent except Australia and Antarctica. They sometimes migrate and when they do, they travel in large numbers. 

Last month the weather forecasters in Denver, Colorado saw something on radar that they assumed was a flock of birds and asked for the ornithologists to identify the species.  Instead, it was determined to be thousands of butterflies, a flight of Painted Ladies! (Most birds migrate at night anyway, the bird experts told them.)  You may read about the story here.
Now, that link I gave you shows a photo of a Painted Lady butterfly and says that it is often mistaken for a Monarch butterfly.  Say what?  Never!  Just look at them!
They are both beautiful butterflies but one is a Painted Lady and one is a Monarch.  Got it? Of course you do and you would never mistake them!  My mind will rest easy now...
Monarch Butterfly

We have really enjoyed our butterflies this summer...and since it was in the 80's today, we are still enjoying them.

Butterflies are always on MY radar! (Yes, I said it!)

Very grateful that the Mexican sunflowers that I planted from seed have done so well this year. The butterflies really love them. I can't blame them...I came home from work and looked up at the flower as I walked past and the orange petals against that blue sky...well, you know I had to go and take a picture so you could share in this joyful moment.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Rescue/ I Forgive It All-Tom Petty

(Not a photo of the turtle in the road but the same kind of turtle, an Eastern Box turtle.)

Coming home from work one day recently, I saw a turtle crossing the road in front of my car.  Behind me, a large garbage truck had stopped to pick up the trash at a house.  I had to be quick!  Instantly, I pulled over and got out of my car. I gently picked up the turtle and walked with it (in the same direction that the turtle had been traveling) and placed him down on the grass.  By this time, the garbage truck was barreling down the road, and passed me.   The truck would have run right over that turtle, I am sure of it.
Can't seem to be much help in this world today but I did save that turtle...

Have you heard this song by Tom Petty?  It was on his last album.  It is worth a listen and I have the lyrics for you too. (That is Anthony Hopkins in the video, if you are wondering.) This song makes me cry.  

Take my horse down to the water
Let him graze awhile
Take my horse down to the water
Let him graze awhile
I have not been down these roads since I was a child
I ain't broke and I ain't hungry but I'm close enough to care
I ain't broke and I ain't hungry but I'm close enough to care
Send my things to my niece Laura
She'll keep 'em over there
I forgive it all, I forgive it all
With her, I forgive it all
There ain't no money in this deal, I just tag along
There ain't no money in this deal, I just tag along
Some things I feel right, somebody else thinks wrong
I forgive it all, I forgive it all
With her, I forgive it all
People are what people make em' that ain't gonna change
People are what people make 'em, that ain't gonna change
There ain't nothing you can do, nothing you could rearrange
But I forgive it all, I forgive it all
With her, I forgive it all

Friday, October 6, 2017

Crying In The Chapel -Written by Artie Glenn/Sung by Darrell Glenn

For some reason, I began singing the song, "Crying In The Chapel" today. (Note to self: find out that if you burst into song if it is a sign of insanity.) Of course, it would be the one by Elvis Presley that  comes to mind, but I wondered, who could have written it?

"Crying In The Chapel" was written by Artie Glenn.  His son, Darrell Glenn recorded it in 1953 while he was still in high school. He was only 17 years old! I read from a Texas newspaper that Artie Glenn had had spinal surgery and stopped into a small church near Ft. Worth and began to pray and he really did begin crying, and then, that inspired him to write this song.  I wish I could find more about him!  Darrell Glenn also went on to write music and had a successful music career. He even wrote a hit for Elvis Presley, "Indescribably Blue". 

Here are the lyrics for "Crying In The Chapel":

You saw me crying in the chapel
The tears I shed were tears of joy
I know the meaning of contentment
I am happy with the Lord

Just a plain and simple chapel
Where humble people go to pray
I prayed the Lord that I'll grow stronger
As I live from day to day

I searched and I searched but I couldn't find
No way on earth to find peace of mind

Now I'm happy in the chapel
Where people are of one accord
Yes, we gather in the chapel
Just to sing and praise the Lord

You'll search and you'll search but you'll never find
No way on earth to find peace of mind

Take your troubles to the chapel
Get down on your knees and pray
Then your burdens will be lighter
And you'll surely find a way

Sonny Til and The Orioles recorded it also in 1953.

Elvis Presley's recording was a hit in 1965.    

There have been many others who have recorded this song too, but hey, I have given you three.

I love them all.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

I Won't Back Down

I looked it up...I did a post in 2015 about Tom Petty's song "I Won't Back Down".  You may find it just here.

Reading a bit more about it, I have learned that the song was written in 1987 after Tom Petty's house had burned and he was told that the fire was due to arson.  It was very difficult for him to grasp that someone had done this deliberately. (No one was ever arrested for this crime.)    Defiantly, he rebuilt a bigger house on the same property and he wanted to show the unknown arsonist that he would not back down.  (The song was co written with Jeff Lynne, a friend and fellow composer/ musician/singer.  I hope you know ELO!)

  The song was in heavy play after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.  That is what music does, it will sometimes take on a life of its own, in ways that are comforting and just right for the times.

Big sky over Arabia Mountain.   

Monday, October 2, 2017

Running Down A Dream/Sad Day For America/Don Malarkey- Rest In Peace

On this sad day, I have also learned that Tom Petty is on life support after a heart attack. (It is now confirmed that he has died.)
Our son called us and reminded me that the song "Running Down A Dream" was the first song that he was able to pick out on the guitar by himself.
It is a good song.  Hope you like it
Also, I have a few photos here from Eastbourne,  which is in England, as many of my regular readers should already know.
Take care, my friends.

Don Malarkey died today.  One of the "Band of Brothers", he was 96.  He wrote a book "Easy Company Soldier", which I can highly recommend.  Also, I know that "Band of Brothers" was an expertly filmed TV mini series, but if you can, please read the book by Stephen Ambrose.  The men of Easy Company deserve to have their story known.  Thank you.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

This Is A Gulf Fritillary Butterfly

Bright orange butterfly on a bright orange flower is a lovely sight!
Panola Mountain State Park posted a photo of a butterfly today on Instagram and asked for someone to identify it.  You know I had to tell them!  The first photo I have given you here is of the Gulf Fritillary showing the front wings.  The next photo is of the back wings...sometimes, depending on how the light hits it, the back wings look silver, like looking into a mirror but get the light just right and you see all those lovely spots with an "eye" looking at you. Can you see it? Once you see this and recognize it, you will always know that it is a Gulf Fritillary butterfly.   (The "eye" is a defense mechanism. If a predator tries to grab it by the "eye", it might be able to get away! And that eye should intimidate them, it looks pretty big, doesn't it?)

Also, butterflies love this is a Mexican sunflower (Tithonia) and we grew them from seed.  They are very easy to grow, just need to water them and care for them daily, that is all!
Worth it though, to get the butterflies to come to us! (The stalk of the flower can be very tall...think of Jack and the Beanstalk and you will get the idea...but the flower is rather small, like the size of a zinnia.)

Bright orange butterfly on a bright orange flower! Wonderful color!
Hope Panola Mountain State Park will see this post!

Friday, September 29, 2017

A Lovers Concerto (Bach's Minuet...or PETZOLD'S Minuet)

Same tune, different song!

Bach's minuet in D (or G) is the same tune for the hit song for The Toys in 1965, "A Lovers Concerto".  I found a video from a singer in England that does a really good cover of this song. 

Now, Bach's Minuet...   reading a bit more about it, it appears that a man by the name of Christian Petzold is the one who actually composed this tune! Well, the things I learn when I am researching things for my blog! You can read all about Petzold and Bach just   here.
Hope you know and love Bach already!

Hello raggedy butterfly, even with some of your wing missing, you are still beautiful and going strong.  Let this creature be a lesson for us!

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Yellow Daisy Time!

Want to go on a nature hike?  Sure you do!

  If you have read my blog before, you know that this is the time of year to see the lovely Yellow Daisies!  Just look at them all, aren't they something? Keep in mind,  these are native wildflowers, they were not planted and tended and fussed over, they have come up from seed from the year before...isn't that wonderful?  We have observed these for many years on Stone Mountain, Arabia Mountain and Panola Mountain...and we have never seen so many, and not just in the small amounts of soil on the rock but also under the trees and on the forest edge. I found some great info on the Yellow Daisy for you, you may read it just here.
All conditions must have been just right for the Yellow Daisies this year, an early spring with lots of rain is my guess!  But hey, enough of my wonderment and amazement over these beauties, you want to see more of them, right?  
Many of the trees and bushes have died on the mountain from the drought last year...I wonder if this is what happens every decade or so and there is a cycle of death and renewal.  The trees die and then, other plants thrive but then the trees take root and grow again.  There is something comforting to me about that thought, that life works itself out in the best way and everyone benefits.
Yes, that is me talking again and I wanted to show you photos...

Richard, stand over there and let me get a photo of you slightly out of focus! Good man!  (Wait, close your eyes, I won't notice! I only have eyes for DAISIES!)
Richard has been informed that he may only take photos of me from a good distance away...he is a good man and a good photographer!

Look at the close up of this eight- petaled beauty! (Some of them might have only seven petals, but I won't hold that against them, aren't they gorgeous?) And the fragrance is lovely too, if you just take the time to notice.

Not only do the Yellow Daisies bloom at our local mountains and rocky outcrops...but did you know that you may also see them on some of the roadsides? (They only grow within a 60 mile radius of Stone Mountain, Georgia.)  I wonder, do you think it is possible that some might grow in my yard?  What do you think?

These are Yellow Daisies In Our Front Yard!
Please note, no seeds were taken from any of our local mountains for the flowers that you see in the photo above!  It is most important that all the flowers are left to drop their seeds so that we may enjoy this lovely floral display next year and the year after that and so on and so on.  You get the picture!

(There was a sale this past weekend at Stone Mountain Park from the Georgia Native Plant Society. I wasn't able to go but I know they had some Yellow Daisy Seeds for sale!  I would love it if we could fill the Metro Atlanta area with these native wildflowers.)

More photos to come of the Yellow Daisies. Hope you love them as much as we do!

Stay straight in life and if possible, have the beauty of wildflowers beside you!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Loved Life/ Reading About People's Lives! (Obituaries)

"Even though Tom will be greatly missed, he didn't want to be mourned, just remembered as a person who loved life."

The above was something that I read in a small town Georgia newspaper when I was visiting my Dad...I liked it so much that I jotted it down.    I always read the obituaries, don't you?  You are really reading about the LIFE of that person, how they lived, what they loved and enjoyed.  

Most of the obituaries now in the newspapers are written by someone who is in the deceased's family but I remember the obits in the Atlanta newspaper that were beautifully written by one person, Kay Powell.  I found the most wonderful article about her and you may read about her just here.

If you don't know one thing about me, you should know this: I dearly love a well written piece by a journalist.  You might not think that an obituary would come under this heading but then, you haven't read any of Kay's obituaries!

Recently, I wrote a post about seeing Venus early in the morning... the planet shone with a steady light in the sky but then, the sun came up over the trees and very quickly, Venus faded from my view.  It was still there, I just could not see it!  It reminded me of a poem and I wanted to share it with you...

I am standing upon the seashore. A ship, at my side,
spreads her white sails to the moving breeze and starts
for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until, at length, she hangs like a speck
of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says, "There, she is gone."
Gone where?
Gone from my sight. That is all. She is just as large in mast,
hull and spar as she was when she left my side.
And, she is just as able to bear her load of living freight to her destined port.

Her diminished size is in me -- not in her.

And, just at the moment when someone says, "There, she is gone,"
there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices
ready to take up the glad shout, "Here she comes!"

Note:  1st Photo of graveyard in Monroe, Georgia, grave of the "Poppy Lady", Moina Mitchell.

Next two photos, from church in Burwash, England.

Poem by Henry Van Dyke.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Funny Story-We All Need A Laugh!

Hey! Want to hear something funny?  I read this on the BBC website today... and I am giggling just thinking about it...
A family in Coventry called the RSPCA (which is the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals") because they had found a lizard under the bed.  The RSPCA officer came to their home and moved cautiously to the side of the bed... and it turned out to be a ....dirty sock!  You may see the filthy sock masquerading as a lizard just  here.

I couldn't help but think of the wonderful Jim Henson and his muppets.  Kermit the Frog was really just a sock on his hand, you know!  If you ever have a sock or an oven glove, you can always make a puppet out of it and make people laugh with a funny voice.  What?! You have never done that before? Well, try it!  Ahem...I MIGHT have done that a few times in my life!  

If you know anything about Jim Henson, you should know that he did the voices for Kermit and one of his other first creations, Rowlf the Dog.  So...I have a song for you where they are both singing.  I have given this to you before on a post years ago, but it is always worth listening to again!

If you want to see a real lizard, I have one for you! This one lives near our front porch and he is quite happy there! It is really a skink and apparently, if it loses its tail, it will grow back. That is a handy trick, don't you think?  That bright blue tail, it is really something to see...much better than a dirty sock!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Batten Down The Hatches!

We have no power and the wind is blowing very hard.
The expression "batten down the hatches" is an English expression from sea faring days.  On a ship, the doors were usually left open but when storms were threatening, the doors were closed and then, a rod placed across them to hold in high winds.  I may not be explaining this correctly, but you will forgive me, the winds are whipping against my window with such force, it is hard to concentrate. Since my front door is trying to fly off its hinges at the moment, I can see the common sense of using that metal rod across the door of the ship.  Now, I am in Georgia and this is the first time I have ever experienced a tropical storm, which is what they tell us Hurricane Irma has become now.  Since the wind speed is only 5 miles or so less than a category 1 hurricane, you will forgive me for not appreciating the semantics of the is just all high winds and rain to me.  I am thinking of what it must have been like for those in Key West, Cuba and Barbuda...some of the places the hardest hit.  

We were in England this time last year...I think the photo above is the same church where they filmed the funeral scene from "Chariots of Fire".  I love that movie so much. If you have never seen it, watch it! You will be glad you did. 

Nave, central and principal part of a Christian church, extending from the entrance (the narthex) to the transepts (transverse aisle crossing the nave in front of the sanctuary in a cruciform church) or, in the absence of transepts, to the chancel (area around the altar). In a basilican church (see basilica), which has side aisles, nave refers only to the central aisle. The nave is that part of a church set apart for the laity, as distinguished from the chancel, choir, and presbytery, which are reserved for the choir and clergy. The separation of the two areas may be effected by screens or parapets, called cancelli. The term nave derives from the Latin navis, meaning “ship,” and it has been suggested that it may have been chosen to designate the main body of the building because the ship had been adopted as a symbol of the church.

Now, I will leave you with a song. (You knew I would!)  It is a most comforting song to me and one that I sing in the car when there is bad weather or bad traffic and I feel afraid.  You are welcome to learn it and sing it also!

Friday, September 8, 2017

Sad Day For Country Music/Under The Weather

On top of the dire news of Hurricane Irma on the news, it is also a sad day for country music.  Don Williams and Troy Gentry both died today.  (Troy Gentry of the country duo, Montgomery/Gentry.)  Don Williams is a favorite of my Dad's.  Such a wonderful voice, deep and comforting to hear...
Don Williams was 78 years old.

Troy Gentry died in a helicopter crash, he was on his way to perform in a concert.  Troy was only 50 years of age.


"Under the weather"...the news about Hurricane Irma is scary to watch on TV.     The weather models show the storm marching up through Florida and making its way through Georgia.  By the time it reaches this area, it is still supposed to have 50 miles per hour winds.  This might not sound like much but it can also produce tornadoes and the high winds could blow down trees and power lines. We are told to be watchful.  So...we are really "under the weather". Praying for all in Florida and south Georgia, especially.
(The reports of the earthquake in Mexico and the pictures of the hurricane destruction from the hard to see.  Praying for them all.)


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Venus, Shining Brightly / Madeleine L'Engle

Stepping outside my front door recently,I was struck by the brightness of Venus.   When we had the total eclipse of the sun on Aug. 21st, there was talk on TV about it for months.  It made me many of those who raved over the eclipse have taken any time to view the moon, planets or stars?  You don't have to have any special glasses for that!  (Venus is the closest planet to Earth.  Even so, it is about 25 million miles away!) Just now as I am typing this, the full moon is brightly shining!

I am reminded of a quote by Madeleine L'Engle...

When I look at the galaxies on a clear night - when I look at the incredible brilliance of creation, and think that this is what God is like, then instead of feeling intimidated and diminished by it, I am enlarged . . . I rejoice that I am a part of it.

Wonderful news to me...a new biography of Madeleine L'Engle will be released in 2018, which would have been her 100th birthday year.  It was written by her granddaughters, Charlotte Jones Voilkis and Lena Roy.  

Praying for all those in the path of the newest hurricane, Irma and for all those affected from Harvey.  I don't know who did the video above, but I love their accents and the calm waters.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

New Pound Coin/ Egret Regrets

I'm not a fan of the new pound coin, but then again, I hate all change.

This was voted as the best joke at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival recently. This made me smile so I am sharing it with you here! If the USA ever changes any coins, you will be able to recycle this one!
Now...this begs the question...WHAT new pound coin?  I remember when they did away with the one pound note in the UK and replaced it with the dear little gold coin. (Around about 1985, I think.)  Could I love the new coin as much?  I looked it up.  It is gold colored and silver colored and has 12 sides and...oh look, let me see if I can find it for you...

Image result for new pound coin in the ukImage result for new pound coin in the uk

"The most secure coin in the world" is how the Royal Mint describes it.  It has quite a few security is a video for you!  Richard had already told me that it was like the old "thripenny bit" but we noticed that the announcer pronounced it "three penny".  So, my friends in the UK...tell me, how would you say this word? The way Richard says it, it sounds like "thrip-nee".   

Sometimes when I visit England, I will have some coins in my coin purse from past visits, and when I count out the change at a shop, the cashier will hand one of the coins back to me and tell me that that particular coin is no longer accepted! Well, honey, you should come to America! We hardly ever change our coins! However, my fellow Americans, if we ever do, I have the joke for you above.

Richard and I have enjoyed seeing the egrets at our walks at Panola Mountain but now, we think they have moved on.  We will miss them.  Hopefully, we will see them there again one day!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

USS Indianapolis

Did you see on the news this week that the USS Indianapolis was recovered? Led by the co-founder of Microsoft, Paul Allen and his company found the ship by using information that was given to them by a Navy historian who discovered records of the last recorded sighting of the Indianapolis.

  I have written about this ship,   here, and also here!  It is an amazing story.

Like many others, I first heard of it when watching the movie "Jaws".  You know when Shaw is relating the story of the sharks attacking the men who are in the water after their ship has been torpedoed? One young boy watching the movie in 1997 asked his father if that story was true.  His Dad told him that it was. Even though he was only 12 years old, he wrote to the surviving members of the Indianapolis and received startling letters from them with gruesome details of what they had witnessed.  Hunter Scott was the lad's name and he interviewed nearly 150 survivors.  The survivors were most insistent that their Captain had been unfairly treated and blamed for the ship's sinking. (Yes, the ship was sunk by a Japanese torpedo but you will just have to read more details about will astound you. Captain Charles B. McVay III was court martialed.) 
The survivors of the Indianapolis never forgot their Captain, and when Hunter Scott contacted them in 1997, they eagerly shared their memories and opinions with him.  All of this resulted in Captain McVay being exonerated by Congressional Resolution in 2000.   Captain McVay had committed suicide in 1968 but his men never forgot him or gave up fighting for his honor.
In 2001, the Secretary of the Navy ordered that Captain McVay's record be purged of any wrongdoing.

I can't stop thinking of the men from the Indianapolis and what the survivors had to endure.  I urge you to read more about them.  The fact that the Indianapolis has now been found should bring more attention to this true story from World War II.

For anyone who might happen upon this post who could be related to one of the survivors, please pass along my most sincere best wishes.  You are all heroes and have my utmost respect.

   Photo of the Royal Sovereign Lighthouse near Eastbourne, England.  Nothing to do with the USS Indianapolis, just the best photo I have of open water. The Royal Sovereign is 7 miles out to sea, in the English Channel.  

Monday, August 21, 2017

August 21...My Blog Anniversary - "A World Of Peace"- All Souls

"May the shadow of the moon fall upon a world of peace".

Besides being the day of the eclipse today, it is also the anniversary of my blog!  Six years ago today, I began my blog.  Have I ever told any of you that I am working on a post and then, you have never seen the post that I have told you about? Looking at my stats, I have published 940 posts but I have 67 drafts.  So, I have written 1007 posts...that somehow seems like a lucky number to me.  I will have to work on those 67 and get them finished...

I have told you before that my most visited post is about the Monastery which is only a few miles from my home.  It now has almost 75,000 views.  It is a place of great peacefulness and serenity and that will be the place that my husband and I have chosen to visit today and view the eclipse. You may see the post that I wrote years ago just here.  There is much hoopla about the eclipse on television.  In 1979, the last time that there was a total eclipse in the USA, the TV announcer told the country that the next one would be in 38 years and he ended the broadcast with those words that I gave you at the beginning of this post... "May the shadow of the moon fall upon a world of peace".   If only it could be so.

I would like to thank all of you who read and comment on this blog. I appreciate you all more than you could ever know.  A special thanks goes out to Meike in Germany, who will always have a special place in my heart for convincing me to start my blog! Here are a few of my followers: The Liverpool lads and their special friend on the Isle of Lewis, Nan from Maine, Mimi-my cat-loving friend in Louisiana, Sue-Mrs. M.-Crochets AND bikes, not at the same time!, Debra and Martha from Canada, Lee and Red Cardinal from Australia, Louise from Colorado, Diana from Green Bay, Emma, MA-always looking on the Bright Side!, Susie, YaYa, and Kristi from Ohio, Mike (A Bit About Britain) and Mark from England, Jenny Woolf and Blue Sky Scotland and now, I have a new follower from...wait for it...Eastbourne! Thanks, Hilary! How nice it is to see photos of such a beloved spot! Not forgetting Mac & Janet, Lynn and also Silke, who are right here in Georgia! Dennis Evans...a preacher who publishes his sermons is also a follower of mine.  Hard to believe that these gifted people take the time to read my words.  How wonderful it is to come to know these friends from my blog.  Wish I could meet every one of you!  (I only jotted down a few of my friends here...but I honestly appreciate every single person who has ever read my blog and took the time to comment. THANK YOU.)  I am also thinking of those who no longer blog...I miss them.

Now, a thank you to my blog:  If not for you, I would never have known what a wonderful photographer I have in my husband.  There are some photos that I have taken for my blog...but for the most part, they are Richard's, so it has been a source of pleasure for him (and for me!) to share his talent with the camera here with you.
Someone contacted us from England when they saw the photos that he had taken of their church and they asked if they could use them on their website! You know he said yes! It is a wonderful church and one that we like to visit when we are in is All Souls Church and you may find their website just here. "Loving the Lord Jesus and Making Him Known."  (Click on "Our Building" to see the photos.)

Hoping that the clouds will stay away for all those who wish to view the eclipse!

                   "Light and life and peace."

Friday, August 18, 2017

Total Solar Eclipse (or ALMOST Total) and Little Shop of Horrors

Total Solar Eclipse

USA map with eclipse path

On Monday, we will have a total eclipse of the sun in the very far northeast corner of Georgia.  It will be at about 97% here in the metro Atlanta area.  This is being called the Great American Eclipse since the eclipse cuts right across the country like a banner across Miss America!  Everyone must have the special glasses to look at the eclipse and they MUST have this code on them: ISO 12312-2.

You may read a lot online about the eclipse...and I have a link at the beginning of this post for you, but I since I am always about the music, I am thinking of "Little Shop of Horrors" and Seymour buying the strange little plant that appeared after "the total eclipse of the sun".  If you have never seen this film, you should search it out.  If you are lucky, you might find a high school that will have this as one of their musicals.  It is always a hit!  The songs are by Howard Ashman (lyrics) and Alan Menken (music).  They also wrote the songs for The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast.  Songwriters ECLIPSE all others for me! (Yes, I said that.)  Sadly, Howard Ashman died just after Beauty and The Beast was completed. When you watch the film, you will see that there is a dedication to him at the beginning..."To our friend Howard, who gave a mermaid her voice and a beast his soul, we will be forever grateful. Howard Ashman 1950–1991".

Little Shop of Horrors is described as a "horror comedy rock musical".  It is a bit hard to put something like this into a box, isn't it?   I very much appreciate something that is well written, don't you?
Also, in the film the voice of the plant "Audrey" is none other than Levi Stubbs.  What? You don't know Levi Stubbs? Well, you should! He was the lead singer for the Four Tops. What a voice!

Here is photo of the rising sun through a heavy cloud cover. (Richard took this one morning recently.) We are hoping for clear skies so that we will see the eclipse. The weather forecasters seem to think that it won't rain.  We will see!

Read more here:

Monday, August 14, 2017

See Rock City

"See Rock City"

 Does that phrase above look familiar to you? It would if you grew up in the South as I did!  Rock City is in Georgia and has been a tourist destination since 1932 and was developed by Garnet Carter and his wife, Frieda.  Giant rock formations are on the very top of Lookout Mountain and the park was built to showcase the natural beauty. (It is only 6 miles from Chattanooga, Tennessee and as the park is on the Georgia side of Lookout Mountain, I can claim it for Georgia!)   Since advertising was a bit difficult in those days, Mr. Carter asked a young sign painter by the name of Clark Byers to travel the highways and offer to paint a farmer's barn and in exchange the farmer would agree to having the barn's roof painted with these three words: SEE ROCK CITY.  
Now, I only knew that I had seen them growing up in Georgia but reading about it, I have learned that they were painted as far north as Michigan and as far west as Texas! He painted over 900 roofs in 19 states from 1935 to 1969.
The signs were a great success and people flocked to Rock City!

Where did Mr. Carter get the money to develop this park? You would never guess! In 1927, he was the first to patent a game that he called "Tom Thumb Golf", he is considered to be one of the fathers of miniature golf! He sold the rights to the patent and used this to fund the Rock City Gardens.

Originally, there was to be a residential neighborhood on the top of Lookout Mountain and because his wife Frieda was from Germany, she wished for it to be called "Fairyland".  Luckily, the development for houses fell through but the idea of Fairyland was not! Frieda decided to develop it into a rock garden.  She took a string and carefully laid out a trail around the giant rock formations, ending at the giant outcropping known as Lover's Leap.
She planted wildflowers and other plants along the trail. Frieda imported statues of gnomes and fairytale characters from Germany and positioned them inside a tunnel in one of the giant rocks. How much I loved this! Fairyland Caverns, I think it was called and along with Mother Goose Village,  it is one of my favorite memories of my childhood, seeing these fairy tale figures! It seems that I remember Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs and that the dwarfs were on a little bridge. (Just looked it up, and I remember it correctly!)  "Rainbow Hall" was another area I liked, looking through colored gels apparently, I didn't know what it was as a kid, for me it was magic!

Now, the trail love of walking among rock and flowers must have started at a very young age at Rock City. (There are 400 native plant species on the trail...thank you Frieda Carter!) I well remember the Fat Man's Squeeze (like the name implies, a stretch where the rocky mountain sides are close together and you have to squeeze through!)  Also, that there were two bridges across a very deep was a beautiful sturdy stone bridge and the other one was a ...wait for it, a swinging bridge, that was very scary to me! The views from the top were amazing...and you could see why it was called Lookout Mountain!

I wish I could proclaim from the rooftops...see nature and enjoy it wherever you are!