Saturday, June 16, 2018

American Animals (Movie)- Love For Birds

A new film that is showing in limited release just now  is "American Animals".  It is based on a true story of four college students who attempted to steal valuable books from the library of Transylvania University in Kentucky in 2004.  What books could be so valuable?  It might give you a hint if I tell you that I discovered this movie info from visiting the Audubon Society website.

(Note- just looked it up and the film is being shown at one theatre in Metro Atlanta, the Regal Tara on Cheshire Bridge Road.)

"Birds of America" by John James Audubon... while on their freshman tour orientation at Transylvania University, they were informed by the librarian that this book in the rare books room at the library was worth millions. (A book so large that we are actually speaking of several folios of the book.)  When they learned that this one sole librarian was the only security for these books, they decided to try to steal them. 

This film is an attempt to get at the truth of this crime and the reasons behind it.  Should I tell you what happens?  Did they get away with it?  No, I will let you either look it up yourself or wait for the film.  I will tell you this- at the time of the crime, the men had no feeling whatsoever for birds, the books themselves were valuable and that was all that they knew.  Since that time (and having served seven years in prison) one of them fell in love with birds and after his release from prison is now an artist specializing in paintings of birds.  (Anybody remember the film "The Birdman of Alcatraz"?  That one is also based on a true story of the inmate  Robert Stroud who became an expert on birds.)

The director of "American Animals" is British,  his name is Bart Layton.  It looks as if he has made quite a few documentaries.  So, I am thinking that his style of film making is one that likes to stick closer to the truth.  (One of my very favorite directors is also British, Michael Apted.  He is the one who did "Coal Miner's Daughter"!   This is one of my Dad's favorite movies! Mine too.)

Having looked a bit further, I found an interview with the librarian from the university library who was a victim in this crime and she has very positive things to say about this film. It is my hope that no one will see this film and think that crime would in any way make someone "special"!  Perhaps as an American living through very troubling times, I am just a bit sensitive on violent criminal activities. 

But hey, what do I know? I have not seen it yet! If I do, I will come back and edit this post! Besides, it is rated "R" and I must admit to you that I rarely like "R" rated movies.  Sometimes I have watched them when they have been edited for TV and I find that what has been cut out was simply not needed and did not add or enhance the story in any way.  
(In my humble but correct opinion, as a writer in our local newspaper likes to say!)

Richard and I sat outside this morning and had our coffee listening to the birds.  We heard one behind our house on a very high tree and in the early morning light, the bird looked to be bright yellow.
Richard ran inside and grabbed the camera and with his ever so steady hand took a picture of it.  To our surprise, it was a Brown Thrasher!  The yellow light upon it really tricked us.  (The front of the Brown Thrasher is white with brown streaks.)
If you observe birds and enjoy them, you will understand the pleasure of this.  If you have yet to discover the thrill of the outside world, then get out there and explore this miracle of our planet!
               Brown Thrasher (Photo by Richard- at 64x zoom and from about 150 feet away!) 
                        This bird is the state bird of Georgia. Singing a song from atop a tree, like the mockingbird, the Brown Thrasher mimics the songs of other birds but typically, each phrase will be sung TWICE.  (If you hear the same song THREE times, then you are hearing the mockingbird!) 

By the way, the students dressed themselves as old men and if you look at the video above, don't you think that one of them looks as if he is Brad Pitt trying to disguise himself?  Is that funny to you or is it just me?  

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Do You Re-use Your Wrapping Paper? Drive Yourself Crazy Finding Bows? Anyone?

My friends, I think that if we truly enjoy something then we want to share that joy with others, don't you think?  Am I the only one that notices beautifully wrapped presents?  I think that a lot of people simply toss the paper away in the bin or if they are good stewards of the planet, they will at least recycle the paper!
Me?  Why, I am like some MAD woman and store away some of the prettiest paper and re- use it again to wrap presents for friends and family! Just look at was a present from Germany, can you see the German words on the paper? (Thanks, Meike!) And since my Dad was in Germany just after World War II, you know I had to wrap his birthday present in this paper!  I happened to have this green ribbon... so even with the pink hearts, I still thought it was just right for my Dad! (After all, it is mostly the green ones that you notice!)

The TIME I have spent looking for just the right color ribbon or bow to go on a present...honestly, you have no idea, I think I must be quite mad...  

And if I can't find one...I will crochet one!  Of course, all of this takes ages...AGES, I tell you!

Since there have been so many weddings and anniversaries lately... I think I will have a nice song for you here.  It is "Romance" and Richard can play this really beautifully but he says he has not been playing enough lately...maybe one day he will allow me to have him playing the guitar for you here! In the meantime, listen to this lovely song.  Interestingly, no one knows who wrote the song but we can still enjoy it!

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Bryan Adams At The O2- London 2018

This past Thursday, Bryan Adams was in concert in London at the O2 Arena. Wish I could have been there!  Don't you just love a concert where the audience knows all the words and sings along with great joy and enthusiasm? 

We were saddened to learn of a death in our family.  The husband of Richard's cousin died today.  Just one week ago today, he had attended this concert at the O2 Arena.  I am certain that one of the voices that you hear singing would have been his.   Yes, I am positive of this.

May that great rock and roll band in heaven welcome you with open arms, Graham!  I know I should say rest in peace but if you would have known him, you would know that the rock and roll band would be more like him.

How I wish I could discuss with Graham everything I just learned about Bryan Adams!  Born in Canada to English parents, he is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, record producer, photographer, philanthropist and activist.  In other words, an all around good guy! 
Did you know that one of the postage stamps in Canada in 2012 had a fantastic photo of Queen Elizabeth with a wonderful, natural smile? That photo was taken by Bryan Adams!  Isn't that something?
(I can't show you the stamp here but if you just type in "Canadian postage stamp from Bryan Adams" into a search engine you will see it!)

Sorry if  my thoughts are more scattered than usual...this has been really sad news from England today.

                 The Anchor Pub in London -Graham would have loved this, I am sure. (Can you see me in the window?)   Cheers!

Sunday, June 3, 2018

When Someone Says It Wrong...

I hope you will think this is as funny as I do!  My son and I saw this on TV and thought it was hilarious.

By the way, it seems that they have the Snickers bars with words on them in this country now but I showed them to you on my blog first! Richard brought the chocolate bars back from England. See the important things I let you all know about?
Stay tuned! (Just make sure you pronounce your words correctly.)

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Alice In Wonderland Party- "Off With Her Head!"

Life has been just work, work, work lately but...Richard and I were invited to a garden party recently.  The theme was "Alice In Wonderland" and it felt like Wonderland to me!  The garden was beautiful-peaceful and serene.  Such a pleasant spot!

One of the guests MADE these cookies.  Aren't they exquisite?

Another guest made this centerpiece for the table!  It was so large that it was decided to display it outside.  Look at the detail!

                     Take time to smell the roses. You know I did!

What did we bring to the party?  Richard wanted to take a bottle of Pimm's but they were sold out!  Never mind, he found the most amazing bottle of  french wine with the bottom of the bottle shaped like a rose. I am not kidding! Cote des Roses    (Check it out...see if you love the bottle as much as I do!)  Oh! And just to make sure we had something from England, we also brought along a bottle of Stone's Ginger Wine.  Cheers! 
 (Neither one of us had a drink while we were there, I think we only drank water.  We are such a fun couple! HA! No, you can't drink and drive and it's not fair to drink when your husband can't, so...)

Now, you can see from this tea towel that Lewis Carroll (real name Charles Dodgson) was born in Daresbury in Cheshire but as you know, he lived most of his life in Oxford. However, he spent  the last twenty summers of his life in Eastbourne in East Sussex! (I might have mentioned Eastbourne to you in my past posts!)
There is the most wonderful book by Jenny Woolf entitled "The Mystery Of Lewis Carroll".  I highly recommend it!  
  Jenny Woolf is also a blogging friend and she told me that he loved the walk up to Beachy Head and that he treasured the view.
I love that she shared that with me!

No one said "off with her head" at this party but I decided to pose behind the beautiful centerpiece with my giant basketball head floating behind it.  I keep telling y'all I am funny!

Take care, everyone!  I have about one million things I want to post about, so I hope I can keep all of it on my mind until I have time to do so.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Christopher Robin- (Trailer)

A new movie about Winnie the Pooh!  It will be out on August 3rd!
Isn't that wonderful news?  Entitled "Christopher Robin", the story will be of Christopher Robin as an adult who has lost his imagination and Winnie the Pooh along with the the other friends from the Hundred Acre Wood must help him to find it again.  (I am sure that they will, don't you? Wink, wink!)

This looks absolutely adorable, doesn't it?  And you know that I want to watch this movie with my very own Christopher! 

On a serious note...

We will have our Memorial Day on Monday here in America.
It is in honor of those who have died while serving in the Armed Forces.  I remember them.
My mother's first husband died in Korea.  His name was Roy Lee Hollifield.  He was only 24 years old.  One of my earliest memories is seeing the carefully folded American flag along with his Purple Heart.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

To The Hearts For Whom It Was Written

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning, great is Your faithfulness.  “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, ‘Therefore I hope in Him!”

Lamentations 3:22-24

Thomas Obadiah Chisholm wrote over 1200 poems in his lifetime.  Many of them were set to music and became hymns.  One of the most well known is "Great Is Thy Faithfulness".   Reading a bit about Mr. Chisholm, I found the following quote:

"I have sought to be true to the Word and to avoid flippant and catchy titles and treatment. I have greatly desired that each hymn and poem might have some definite message to the hearts for whom it was written."

Now, I found a video for you from the British TV Show, "Songs of Praise".  Please note that the singing in this church is from the congregation! They are magnificent singers! Also, the words are here for you to read (and even sing along with, if you like.)  This is a beautiful hymn and I think you will agree that this video is well worth a listen.  

As an added bonus, the church should remind you somewhat of the church that we just saw on Saturday from Windsor! I know that it is not the same one, it just reminds me of it.  (Looking at this today, I am thinking that it is Southwark Cathedral!  I should have recognized it right away, I love it so much.  If you are ever in London, you must promise me that you will visit Southwark Cathedral, it is on the South Bank. Anybody remember that I have been researching my family tree ? We had ancestors who were married at Southwark Cathedral! I was so pleased to learn that.)

If you are ever in England, I would very much recommend that you see as many churches as you can.  You know I do!

                       All Souls Church, Eastbourne, East Sussex

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Happy and Glorious!

Goodness me, I thought the Royal Wedding was lovely, didn't you? 
In case you missed it or want to relive a few moments of it, I have the link below for you!

Highlights of Royal Wedding.

The weather was spectacular!  It so much could have been a different story!  Anyone remember the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in 2012?
It poured with rain!  

Anyway, I enjoyed every minute of this wedding today!  If anyone wants to "bash" the Royals or anything pertaining to this wedding, please would you just go away and leave me to this tiny moment of joy? Thank you!

Queen Elizabeth married Prince Phillip on Nov. 20, 1947.  I remember reading a quote from Winston Churchill about their wedding.  I can't find his exact words but I think he said that their Royal Wedding was like a bright light along this weary road of life.  The wedding today made me think of this. 

Stand By Me!  I just bet that that song has never been sung inside the walls of St. George's Chapel!  Amazing, I loved it! (Look up Psalm 46, you will see that Ben E. King was influenced by those words, so the church setting is just right, I think.)  In fact, I loved all the music, didn't you?  (Ave Maria on that cello? Beautiful!)

Ox eye daisies!  There is a beautiful simplicity to daisies that I love.  And guess what, they are not native to America but were introduced here from Europe in the 1800's.  Just thought this might be a nice flower for this post. 

  Best wishes to Harry and Meghan, another English/American couple.  God bless them!

And our very best wishes also for our friends in England who also just got married, Henry and Sarah!    Sending our love to you across the pond!   Jolly Good!  (Give our love to Joy & Henry, we know they enjoyed the Royal Wedding immensely!)  xx

Joy and Henry are Henry's parents...and I have a photo of them from 2015.    Happy and glorious!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018



Want to hear about something amazing?  There is an elephant sanctuary in Africa, specifically in Kenya.  It is the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary and it is owned and operated by the Namunyak Conservancy.  (The first community owned elephant orphanage in all of Africa!) 
 Now, do you know this name- Ami Vitale?  She is an amazing photographer, writer and film maker and I urge you to read a piece that she wrote about the sanctuary in the National Geographic Magazine.   Singing wells in Africa? Learn all about them, the    article is just...

Do any of you have an Instagram account?  Is that what you call it? Oh dear, I have one and I am not even sure! LOL!
My son set me up on one and he chose the kind of things he thought I would like.  I have learned so much about elephants from this one Instagram account...the one from R.E.S.C.U.E., the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary.  The photos and videos of the baby elephants are just ...I am telling you, they are amazing!  
Okay, I have used amazing too much in this post but "causing great wonder" and "startlingly impressive" fits just right!  Let me know what you think!  Who does not love baby elephants?  I ask you who could not?


  1. causing great surprise or wonder; astonishing.

    • informal
      startlingly impressive.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Once, I Saw Bluebells

The photo of myself at the right of this blog shows me amongst the bluebells.  It was taken in May of 2010.  That is the one and only time that I ever saw the bluebells blooming in England.  They were a bit late that year for which I am grateful  The other times that we visited, we would have JUST missed them.
On the BBC recently, they had a list of some of the most beautiful places to visit, and one of those listed was a Bluebell Wood in Hampshire.  Now, these photos are not from Hampshire but are in Sussex.  I can say to you that ANY of the bluebell walks would be a place that anyone should enjoy.  I wondered if there might be a song about bluebells. (You know I would think about music, right?) And sure enough, there is!

Since tomorrow is Mother's Day, I want to say a happy Mother's day to all the mothers out there.  I have a special remembrance for Joan, Richard's Mum, who died in March.  In England, their Mother's day (or Mothering Sunday) was on March 11th, and that day was the Sunday just after his Mum had died.  It is a hard time for many, Mother's Day, when they have lost their mothers.
One of my co-workers lost his mother this week and then, this weekend, we have our Mother's Day.  I am thinking of him too.

Years ago, my brother gave us some Dutch Iris bulbs and this is a gift that keeps on giving.  I might have seen the bluebells only once but this blue comes up every May and it is in my own front yard!

Friday, May 4, 2018

Islay Memorial To American Soldiers from 1918

Just read today of an amazing story that happened one hundred years ago.  (If you didn't see this on the news, please read this!) I saw this on the BBC website and you may read the story
just here.

Towards the end of World War I, an island off the west coast of Scotland named Islay experienced two separate disasters involving  American troop ships.  The Tuscania was torpedoed by a German U- boat on Feb. 5, 1918 and sank.   That same year in October, the ship Otrano was involved in a collision with another ship in stormy seas and it also sank.
Over 700 American soldiers died from the sinkings of these ships.  The small island of Islay (pronounced EYE-la) had most of their own men in World War I, so it was up to those left on the island to care for those who survived the shipwrecks and also to identify those who had been washed ashore.  It was a gruesome task but from all accounts they did this with great honor and reverence.

It is quite impossible to say too much of the humanity of all these people, of their readiness to accept any hardship in the name of mercy, of the gentle, steadfast nursing they gave the soldiers, virtually bringing them back to life.

 As they began preparations to bury the American soldiers, they wished to have an American flag on display in their honor.   They didn't have one so...they MADE one.  Four women and two men working through the night, completing the flag at 2AM, just before the first funeral.
  This beautiful handmade flag is now in the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.  You may read about the story behind it (and see the photo of the flag!) just here.   

Today, there was a memorial service to honor these men on the island of Islay.  That American flag I told you about?  The Smithsonian sent it on loan to Islay and it was used in the Memorial Service for today.

(Photo of my Dad taken 10 years ago at a Veterans Service, posing in front of a big American flag.)

I have read of a memorial in the state of Wisconsin that will honor the 21 men from Baraboo, Wisconsin who survived the sinking of the Tuscania.  You may read about that memorial here.  

Now, I hope that you will find this story just as fascinating and interesting as I do.  I had never heard of this until today so if I have gotten any of my facts wrong, I will be happy to correct any mistakes I have made.  I wanted you all to know about this! 

Our walking iris is blooming!  (I like to call it Apostle Plant.) The fragrance is divine!   Neomarica gracilis

Sunday, April 29, 2018

What's In A Name? (Fearnot and Faintnot)

What's in a name?  A rose by any other name would smell as sweet...    William Shakespeare

"Me" -  a name, I call myself!    Oscar Hammerstein  

This past week a new Royal Baby was born.  As always, you have to wait a few days before you know the name of the baby, so...I had first names on my mind, if you will.  At the same time, I was researching the family history of Richard's mother who passed away a few months ago.  Joan's family is firmly rooted in Sussex in England.  I have traced them back for 12 generations.  Two of the first names were so unusual that I have to tell you about is "Fearnot" and the other one is "Faintnot".   Obviously, these words are taken from the Bible and turning them into names at one time was not that unusual.  I found the most wonderful post about these kind of Puritan names, you may read it just here.   (The writer has a list of these names and Fearnot is on the list!)

The most extraordinary thing about the man Fearnot...he named HIS son Fearnot and the second Fearnot named his son the very same.  I noticed it stopped after that 3rd generation! Still, it is amazing to notice these kind of things as you are looking over the long list of names of people who have lived in the past.  And there is a long army of people who went into your being here! It is truly an astounding number when you research it... (My sister and niece have spent a good amount of time looking up our family history, I seem to have an English heart for a good reason, a great number of names are from England.)

Also...looking a bit further, Faintnot also named his son Faintnot and the 2nd Faintnot named HIS son the same! It seemed that the first Fearnot's grandson and the first Faintnot's granddaughter married. Do you wonder if they told each other their grandfather's first names not long after they met and if they had a good laugh?
Note: Faintnot (the first one) born in 1594 and Faintnot (also the first one) was born in 1591.  I hope they met!

Now, although Fearnot and Faintnot are not on my family tree, they are on my husband's and I hope that it is proper that even though these men are not related to me directly, I will take comfort from those strong names...

  Fear NOT and Faint NOT...I will try my best to remember that.

 It just occurred to me that these wonderful names ARE related to my son so I hope he will read this post!

Do you have any names like this on your family tree?  Do tell!

Speaking of names, we could easily call this chocolate bar a
"Stroppy" instead of a "Snickers" but would it still taste as sweet?

strop·py. adjective. The definition of stroppy is a British slang term used to describe someone who is hard to deal with, or who is easily offended.

P.S.   Another name that I found... Performthyevows.  (Perform thy vows.)  Had to tell you!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

I'm For The Birds! (And Elephants and Other Creatures)

If you have been reading my blog for anytime, you  might know of my love of the birds.  I recently told you how much I enjoyed the book by David McCullough, "The Wright Brothers".    The brothers were not college educated.  Extremely intelligent, they made careful observation of birds in flight and were able to simulate this with their man-made flying machines (airplanes.)  Other men had made similar machines, the Wright brothers were able to keep their airplanes aloft longer than others and they were able to land them!

"Why Do Birds Matter" is a marvelous piece written by Jonathan Franzen for National Geographic and I have it for you to read just here.    Please read it if you can, he is a wonderful writer and I very much agree with what he has written!

Wait, you are saying to yourself....Jonathan Franzen, isn't he a writer of FICTION? Yes, of course, he most certainly is!    I remember when his book "The Corrections" was chosen as a choice for "Oprah's Book Club" and he somehow expressed discomfort at that decision and Oprah withdrew her selection.  Not to worry, the publicity made the book sell all the more.   I just looked this up and it was back in 2001. (They have since made up!)   So, you might not remember this, or maybe you are like me and you DO remember it and wonder why facts like this are lodged into your brain but you can't remember any of your passwords or the phone number of your only child.

Now, before I got sidetracked there about Jonathan Franzen and my memory-full brain stuffed with facts that I don't need...I was trying to tell you how much I love birds and other creatures.  I do!  I am working on a post about...elephants!  Honest!

Mockingbirds!  Richard was able to get a photo of  this pair on our suet feeder.   They look like they are posing, don't you think?
Birds! They are wild creatures that you can admire for free! (Well, the cost of seeds and suet is helpful!)  And our little dishes of water for them are very much appreciated

Now, please tell me you have observed the birds and admire them!
Do NOT tell me that you are scared of birds because of the film by Alfred Hitchcock!  That was FICTION, don't forget that!  Scary film and very well done but don't dislike birds because of it.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

When Life Gives You Lemons...

Whenever I make a cake that comes out the way that I want it to, I take a photo of it!  This is a pound cake that I made for Richard, it is made from rice flour and cornstarch so it is gluten-free.  The batter seemed a bit much for my little loaf pan so I made a small cake in a cake pan. (They call it a cake "tin" in England!) This was really good! The recipe didn't say to do this but I like to poke holes in the cake with a toothpick and then, I mix fresh lemon juice and confectioner's sugar together and pour it over the cake and it soaks into the cake.  Lemon Cake! Don't you love lemon?  I do!

Of course, you know the expression, "When life lives you lemons, make lemonade".  Guess what, I had a sweet teacher who wrote that on a note and gave that to me in high school and...I still have the note! (Just came across it recently.) Thanks, Ms. Ellington! Hope you all had nice teachers in school, I had some bad ones but I hey, I have dismissed THEM from my mind!  

I have been hearing Joe Cocker singing the Beatles song "I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends" on a TV advert.  It sounds so good to hear!
It was used as the theme music for the TV show "The Wonder Years".   Anybody remember that show?  I thought it was great!

Now remember, if life gives you lemons... squeeze them and then, mix with sugar and pour over a cake!  It will be wonderful!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Wonder of Eggs/ Hold On, I'm Coming

"I think if required on pain of death to name instantly the most perfect thing in the universe, I should risk my fate on a bird's egg".

Thomas Wentworth Higginson

The above quote was used by Sir David Attenborough in "The Wonder of Eggs" which was broadcast in England recently.  I hope they will show it here soon as it looks as if it is something I would really like to see!  (I read a review about it from the English newspaper "The Times".) Did anybody see this on TV in England?  Let me know what it was like, will you?  Now, the quote made me look up Thomas Wentworth may read about him here.  What a fascinating man!  We need more like him today.

"Hold On, I'm Coming"...I have had that song in my head.  I didn't know why but I just looked at some videos on YouTube and apparently, the Chicago Cubs play it at Wrigley Field every time the Cubs score a run.  The Braves played the Cubs on Saturday...the Braves were ahead 10  to 2.  However, the Cubs scored NINE runs in the 8th inning and they ended up beating the Braves with a score of 14 to 10!  I must have heard that song in the background without even realizing it! (You see in that 8th inning, I had plenty of time to hear it!)  

Oh well, you win some, you lose some ...and some get rained out! (By the way, there were several games postponed this past Sunday, due to rainy/cold weather!)  

Hope all of you are doing well these days!  

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Salt Water Cure With Sun Glitter

"The cure for anything is salt water-  sweat, tears or the sea."
Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen)

Okay then, I will take...the sea!

Sun glitter!  When you see the sunlight sparkling on water, that is the correct word for it! Did you know? " Sun glitter is the summation of individual sun glints, each one an instantaneous flash of sunlight from a wave at just the right angle to reflect light."  (from "Color and Light In Nature" by Lynch and Livingston".

And all these years, I have just called it sun sparkling on water! I love it by the way.  From my reading, it says that you could damage your eyes by looking at it, so you must be careful. Yes, I would mother the world if I could!

Hey! I have shared this video with you before but since this goes with this post, here it is again!  Richard took the video from the pier at Eastbourne and it was a windy day, so you might want to turn down the volume! That is me at the beginning saying "wow"!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Red/ "Gone From My Sight"

All of these photos are from England except the two flower photos...the large flower is an amaryllis and the small red one is a fire pink which is a beautiful wildflower that grows here.  Why am I thinking of red?  My mother-in-law passed away recently and she left instructions for everyone to wear red at her Memorial service. So, this is just my way of showing this color in her honor.


Joan wanted the songs "Jerusalem" and "All Things Bright and Beautiful" at her service.   Should I have both songs on here for you? Of course, I will!

Thinking of those who have lost loved ones recently...there is a poem that I wonder if you know.   It is called "Gone From My Sight".  It was written by Henry Van Dyke in the 1860's...

Gone From My Sight

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!"

Why, you will never guess...the same man who wrote this poem also wrote the lyrics to "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" which is set to the music of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony.  
You must know that song! If not, you will now!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Doris Day "Nothing Could Be Finer"

Join me in wishing a happy birthday to Doris Day today! 

Doris Day- kind, beautiful, funny, and oh so talented at singing and acting!  I only knew her from her films with Rock Hudson from the 1960's (and also her TV show from the same decade)  but thanks to the TCM network that shows classic movies, I have grown to appreciate her great talent. 

Often, people will think that someone who is bright and sunny, seemingly always cheerful has led a charmed life.  We all know that is not always the case, right?  The reason she had that TV show in the 1960's? When her husband, Marty Melcher died in 1968, she discovered that he had squandered all her savings and she was really forced to do it for the money. (That and also several TV specials which she really didn't want to do.)  What happened? Why, she soldiered on and the TV show and all her specials were big hits. 

Did I mention her kindness?  Doris Day has been an advocate for animals for many years.   You may read more about her great work just here.  If you click on that link, you may also donate towards the Doris Day Animal Fund. You know that would be the best present for Doris Day!

In honor of Doris Day, here is one of our native wildflowers-an azalea.   Just like her, it is naturally beautiful!

If you are wondering about my the title of my post...I hope you know that is from "Carolina In The Morning" and was written by Gus Khan (played by the wonderful Danny Thomas in that film that you MUST see, "I'll See You In My Dreams".)  

Friday, March 30, 2018

Going Viral (Just Breathe, Kay, Just Breathe!)

The title of this post is not as it seems. That is just my way of telling you that I have been sick/ill/unwell this week from a dreadful virus and at the same time, have had breathing problems from my asthma.  Now, you don't have to think about breathing, it is an involuntary act, you breathe in, you breathe out, etc, etc. etc. (At least, we hope we do!) 

"Asthma is a disease characterized by recurrent attacks of breathlessness and wheezing. They may occur from hour to hour and day to day.

This condition is due to inflammation of the air passages in the lungs and affects the nerve endings so they become easily irritated. (Something I have in common with nerve endings, ha ha.) In an asthma attack, the lining of the passages swell causing the airways to narrow and reducing the flow of air in and out of the lungs."

My asthma is under control as long as I avoid my "triggers". Bad thing, I never know what chemical might set me off...and by chemical, that could be someone's perfume, aftershave, cleaning get the idea! Cigarette smoke is one of the worst for me. I often have to hold my breath as I walk into a building if I see someone outside smoking.  Thank God, one can no longer smoke inside buildings. That was a wonderful thing to come about for someone like me.  (We have friends who smoke but they know this bothers me, so they are considerate! Yes, talking to you in England, Henry and Sarah!)

"Aging Disgracefully", that could describe me, but it is the name of a blog from Canada!  I have a link for you and Sandy aka Doris the Great will explain the problems of scented products around people like us and you may read her post just here.   She is so doggone funny and positive but I think you can sense the seriousness of this subject from her post.  I mean, come on, folks, breathing is really a nice thing to do, am I right?  

You don't want to know all my problems but the phone company cut a cable and we didn't have our internet/TV or phone for a while.
After all was restored, I had difficulty in looking at our emails. 
So...not much time for blogging this past week and with the weather, not even time for my walks...

And yet, the cherry trees are at the end of their blooming and the blossoms are falling and the high winds have blown them all over my walkway.  I am like a princess with the petals beneath my feet when I trudge up my steps from a long day at work!

                                  Diamorpha with their white blossoms too!

A Happy Easter to you all!  And a happy Spring to you as well!
I feel a sermon comin' on here!