Monday, December 29, 2008

Happy New Year

In looking for an image to post for a look forward to the New Year, I chose this one. It is an old one. I took the picture when we were in Savannah, Georgia, for a photography workshop.

Why did I select this image? It is of a sunrise. Just as the sun rises each day, with the possibility of a fresh start, so will we begin a new year on Thursday. Though each day gives us a new start, there is something special about a new year.

Second, I chose this image because there are people in it. In this case some really nice people who have become special to Mitch and me. However, it is for you to put your people in it. I pray for you loved ones to enhance your life in this new year.

Third, there is a horizon of the ocean. I likewise pray for you new and greater horizons, as much as you want or need.

Joy to you for the New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Advent Wreath and Cross

A number of years ago our then Pastor introduced the Advent Wreath to our Sunday Evening Service. This was quite different for us Southern Baptists, at that time. The Advent Wreath and its symbolism became a part of our family Christmas as our girls were growing up. We would have one in our home, even in the years when our Church did not. The meaning of the wreath and the ritual of it helped me many years in preparing my heart for Christmas.

Sometimes Christmas can become so busy that the peace and meaning of it gets lost.

This year we had a wreath at our Church. This afternoon Mitch and I went up and took some pictures of it. It was peaceful interlude in the busyness of Christmas.

In this image I find an appreciation for the Advent Wreath, as a preparation for the child to be born, and the cross, as an emblem of the child grown to be a man. Certainly the cross is not a peaceful image, yet it symbolizes for me a peace in my life for I have found Christ to be my peace.

I hope you are having a Merry Christmas, and that you find the peace of the season.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Coheelee Creek #2

Today, Mitch and I again went to Coheelee Creek (see his blog We had a really nice time. We left home before daylight and went by our favorite spot for breakfast. Bobby makes the absolute best biscuits I can get (that is outside of my Mom’s house). We got the requisite sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit and continued on our way.

Bobby asked where we were off to at that hour of the day. We told him we were off to Coheelee Creek. He said that was getting to be a habit.

We had stopped by his place the last time we went to Coheelee.

As Mitch mentions, we had a heavy rain the end of last week. This meant there was a lot of water coming through the creek. The sound of rushing water was so beautiful. It was very peaceful.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Cross Florida Barge Canal

A few years ago, I worked for the Cross Florida Barge Canal. It was a project begun years ago, an effort to build a canal that would allow ships to cross Florida. It was supposedly for security purposes. See this for information:

This past Monday, I went to Punta Gorda, Florida, to speak to a ladies’ luncheon group. As I was returning home, I went across the bridge and took this picture out the window over my shoulder.

It was a beautiful sunset. I just wish I had had time to stop and enjoy it.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

My Thanks

As I was looking through some photographs from last fall, I came upon this photograph of a Life-Saving Station on Cape Cod. While the photograph is interesting and it brought back some nice memories of our vacation, it brought to mind something much more important.

Mitch, my husband, and I got to spend Thanksgiving together. There were a number of years that we were very limited in spending Thanksgiving together. We might have supper with family, but Mitch would be working. Or, we might have lunch together with family, but Mitch would be working.

There are many people in the “life saving” area who do not get to celebrate holidays with their families. These include those locally such as law enforcement, paramedics, and firefighters. Then there are those that are defending our country, Coast Guard, Air Force, Army, Marines, and Navy,

To this I could add, doctors, nurses, and others in the medical fields.

So, to each of you who made my Thanksgiving with my husband and our family a nice day, I say thank you. May God bless each of you and your very special family.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Those of us here for Thanksgiving.

Brandie, our daughter, and her son, William.

Michelle, our daughter, and William

One of the most important things about Thanksgiving is, for me, family. I thoroughly love having as much of my family around me as I can get. Each year this varies with family. A few years ago, I was going through radiation, so we decided Thanksgiving should be small. We were worried about the chance of my getting ill. Every so often my brother's boys, our nephews, would bring an extra guest or two, which was really great.
I also like it when we have friends around for lunch. A couple of years ago we had three extra couples for lunch. They were at our church helping us to build our church. It was such a treat to share lunch with them. We have invited people that we work with on occasion.
Thanksgiving, sitting around a dining table (or sometimes two or three tables) sharing food, laughs, life, is wonderful.
Another important part of Thanksgiving is being thankful to our Lord. Even though I try to keep caught up each day, this day just gives me an extra day to remember how blessed I am.
I hope you had a good Thanksgiving and that you are richly blessed with family and friends.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Beauty of the Earth

Mitch and I spent several days last week in Lake Wales, Florida. We went to Bok Tower, a place I had heard of often but never visited. It is an exquisite place. There is the tower, which has a magnificient carillion. There is also a lovely garden. Soon the Camellias will be in bloom. There were a "gazillion" buds waiting to bloom. Here is a picture of a Swan. There were two of them in the reflecting pool in front of the tower.

Swans to me are just incredibly beautiful. I hope you have, and realize that you have, beauty in your life.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


One of my favorite things is riding around looking at the country where we live. It is just beautiful everywhere you look. We live in a farm belt. There is always something going on, either planting, fertilizing, watering, or harvesting. Here are a couple of pictures of the sun setting over a wheat field.
I hope you enjoy the place where you live.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Great Blue Heron

A few days ago, Mitch and I took our small john boat and went for a short ride on the water. It was a beautiful day and I wanted to see some blue sky and smell fresh water. I had not been feeling well and sunshine always makes me feel better. We grabbed a few shots of the autumn colors and I got a few shots of a Great Blue Heron. Here is one of the images.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Coheelee Creek

Mitch and I went several days ago to Coheelee Creek. We actually went looking for fall color and there was not much of it yet. However, we love to go to Coheelee to photograph. There is a covered bridge and it has a nice stream. We walked further down the stream than we had been before. There was a four foot high bank covered with ferns. I tried to get a photograph but the sun is in the wrong place this time of year. So, a note went in my calendar for later, when the sun is in the northern route.

However, here is a picture of the creek leading to the covered bridge. It is just a peaceful, country image. Someplace where I could sit and while away a day (even without a book). I should point out that we were up before daybreak to get to Coheelee early.

I hope you are having a lovely fall where you are.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sea Shells

Mitch and I went to Fort Clinch, in Florida on the northeast coast, a couple of years ago. It was in January and we were celebrating our anniversary. It was freezing cold. However, to the beach we went. Cold or hot, the beach is one of my favorite places to be. There were a lot of shells and this pattern intrigued me, maybe because it reminds me of a quilt.

I also thought of election day when I looked at it. Our country made up of all different races, genders, beliefs, opinions. It has worked so far. May it work from now on.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Autumn Fog

This is a tall ship at Mystic Seaport, Connecticut.

This is a man fishing on Stonington Point, Connecticut.

It is a beautiful time of year. The leaves on certain trees change colors, some to red, some to gold, even some to a peach color. The Red Cypress that are around where we live turn to their rusty, red color. So, it is a very colorful time of year. Another thing about this time of year is the fog. In autumn we have, at least around here, a greater opportunity for fog than during the summer.

These two pictures are a few pictures of “foggy” weather. They were both taken when we were at Mystic Seaport in Connecticut last fall. Being on the sea, it was incredibly foggy and very beautiful.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Savannah, Georgia

Here is a picture of Forsyth Park Fountain, created in 1858 and restored in 1988.

This image was one of the first abstract images I ever tried, in camera.

Savannah, Georgia’s history began in 1733. General James Oglethorpe landed at Savannah, along with 120 passengers on the ship “Anne.” Oglethorpe named the area Georgia after King George II.

Savannah had her great times. She was a very wealthy city when cotton was king in the south.

Savannah also had very difficult times. In 1820 there was such an outbreak of yellow fever that a tenth of the population died.

Savannah has survived fires, epidemics, hurricanes and even tourists.

Here is the door to just one of the many beautiful old churches located around the squares in Savannah.

This last is one of the many gates that lead into private areas. You can tell the brick work has been around for hundreds of years.

Mitch and I have been to Savannah several times. The last time we were headed to Savannah we thought we had been there enough. Then when we finished the photography workshop we were there to attend, we decided we actually needed to go again. I hope we do get to go again. It is a beautiful city with lots to explore.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Keeping William

A couple of days this week, Mitch and I had the privilege of keeping our grandson, William. His mom had to work and we were delighted to keep him for her. He is eighteen months old and learning so much so fast.

William loves hats! Actually base ball caps, hats not so much. So, we bought him a new “hat.” Mitch had not yet had the opportunity to really know how much our grandson likes hats. When we first showed the new hat to William, he was at his grandpa’s knee. William bent his head down. Mitch wasn’t sure what that meant. I told him, William wanted the new hat put on his head. Mitch put it on William’s head and William just grinned. He loves hats!

William also loves ceiling fans. I am not sure what the attraction is. I know as an infant he would just lay down under the fan and watch the fan go around and around. When Mitch turned off the ceiling fan, he found out that William wants it on. His comment was, “I need the fan.” He continued saying that until Mitch turned it back on.

Of course, we are remembering just how quick children at eighteen months can get in to stuff. I did feel my age somewhat once we were through.

We were so blessed. It was a lot of fun!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Our grandson, William, was working at a small activity table we gave him. When he would get the square object in the square hole, he would say, “YaaaaaY!”

Well, that was me yesterday. I had a “yaaay” day. I was in the right place at the right time.

We took our 16 foot Carolina Skiff, the “Miller Time”, and went for a ride. We rode up Spring Creek. We took the back channels by Silver Lake WMA. We rode over to Jack Wingate’s, a local “fish camp” as it is called around here. (We were going to have lunch there, but as we got off the boat Mitch remembered he did not have his wallet.)

Then we rode back home by way of the “big lake”.

It was a beautiful day. The sky was just an incredible shade of blue. The Cypress trees are turning red. Other trees are turning red and gold.

We saw a number of Coots that have come down for the winter. We also saw a number of Cormorants (they can go back home). They too have come for the winter.

We also saw a number of Anhingas, Great Blue Herons, and White Egrets. These are not unusual to see any time.

I had taken my small point and shoot camera, as I was really just wanting a boat ride. However, after we got going, there were several times I wished I had taken my bigger camera and a long lens.

It was a good fit. Yaaaaay!

Sunday, October 19, 2008


This window is on an old barn. The barn is on the Silver Lake WMA that I mentioned earlier.

This window is in the house where Mitch, Michelle (our youngest daughter), and I stayed in Churchtown, PA. We were there on vacation last year in early October.

Looking at these two windows started me thinking about the various kinds of windows. The one in the barn was probably used to load feed into the upper reaches of the barn. There was most likely a pulley system where bags or bales could be picked up and carried up to the top. So, it was a working window.

The second window, well, it was a working window. For me, though, in the short time I was there it was a dreaming window. I imagine for some young girl, in the past, it was a dreaming window. I sat there and looked out over rolling hills with Amish farms in them. It was a beautiful, peaceful site, which I enjoyed very much.

I have a dreaming, working window now. It is at the place where my sewing machine sits. I can sit there and work on quilts. While working, I can look out my window to see deer crossing our yard, foxes crossing our yard, or Blue birds in the bird bath. Some times a Fox squirrel will come sit in the yard. The sun comes up on this side of the house. It is a great window.

I hope you have a place to dream a bit while you are working.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Silver Lake WMA

Last week, Mitch and spent an early evening at a recently opened wildlife management area, Silver Lake WMA. The land was owned by a paper company and then bought for preservation by government. It has several small lakes or ponds, along with some lovely woods. Last Friday evening, we went to take some pictures at sunset. We had tried to do this before, but we were a little late getting there. This time we got there as we wished.

The first image is from the barn. I wanted to be able to look through the barn and look at some beautiful maple trees that are changing colors. This is why we went at sunset.

The second image is from the woods. As we were driving through, I got the idea to try to make an abstract. Marti Jeffers, a photographer from Atlanta, taught me about in camera abstracts at a seminar that Mitch and I attended in Savannah. Time to try it!

Then the third image is from our Wednesday evening trip (last night). After our evening church service, we again went to Silver Lake; this time to take some images by moonlight. This image is of the barn, mentioned earlier. The image was taken, with about an eight minute open shutter. I then decided to make it into a black and white. Black and white seemed to fit the image better than color.

We really had a great time at this place. We have been there several different times and will probably go back.

Monday, October 13, 2008


Today was a slow day, especially when compared with yesterday’s hectic schedule. I taught the Sunday School class. As always I really enjoyed it. It was the Senior Adult Class, which is the over 60 years of age in our church. We have three adult classes and this was the oldest one. Then I led the worship service, filling in for our Choir Director. That is a joy for me, though it is certainly a tense time. I sang the morning special music, “I Call it Home.” It is a piece I had been practicing to sing with my Dad but that had not worked out. Since I needed a song, at the last minute so to speak, I sang this one.

Our daughters tease us about being retired and never knowing if it is the weekend or not. This is not so! For us the weekend is the busy time.

We live in an area which is mostly made up of weekenders, those that only come in for the weekend. Frequently on Friday and Saturday’s we are visiting with friends who come in. We usually go out, at least on Friday nights, to dinner with friends. Saturdays we may go out again.

If I am having lunch with friends, it is usually to meet them somewhere on Saturdays. We’ll have lunch and visit and maybe stroll through antique shops.

Then Sundays are always busy. Sunday School and Church in the morning then again Church in the evening. Mitch teaches a children’s class on Sunday nights. I have choir practice on Sunday afternoons (pre-evening services).

So, we really do know when the weekend rolls around. For us that is usually the busiest time of the week.

Then, Mondays are time to relax and catch up around the house. That was today.

I hope you have time to catch up, be it a week day or a weekend. Just some time to relax is always important.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Washing Windows

October 11, 2008

Washing Windows

Mitch asked me last night if a friend of ours had any windows for me to wash.

What he was referring to was the fact that I told one of the ladies at church I would teach her Sunday School class this Sunday. Then our choir director called and said she is not going to be in church Sunday, could I please handle the choir duties. That means that I will lead the church in singing hymns as well as come up with a solo to sing, because the choir has not practiced anything for Sunday.

Our joke around here, or at least Mitch’s joke, is to ask if anyone has any windows for me to wash, due to the fact that I can’t say NO to anyone. I am not sure how funny this is. Because it is painful!

In this case, I had agreed to teach this Sunday because the choir director was supposed to be here. I had filled in for her last Sunday, and thought I would be safe this weekend. I like teaching Sunday School, though I do like teaching Bible Studies a lot more. I like singing. I have even been known to say I would rather have music than food. Indeed if one could live on music that would be the case. So, I REALLY enjoy leading the choir and singing.

So, today, I have been “washing windows”. I had to complete my Sunday School lesson. Then, come up with a solo for the special music for tomorrow. Finally, we have a substitute pianist. That should really finish off my nerves for tomorrow.

So, let me say, God is good!

I get to teach God’s word tomorrow, prayerfully hoping that He will give me the words that someone needs to hear from Him. The lesson is partly on handling disappointments. I’ve had my share. Hopefully something in my words will echo in someone else’s life, making a bright spot in their day.

I get to sing for the Lord tomorrow. I always pray when I sing that God will give me a song that someone needs to hear. Tomorrow I am singing about home, about heaven. Surely that is a comforting thought for anyone.

May you find someone to provide a bright spot in your day. May you find home.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Swing

This is where I spend a lot of my morning coffee time, this time of the year.

During the summer it is frequently too buggy. The gnats here in southern Georgia would drive anyone crazy, I do believe. It is warm in the mornings in the summer, but not too warm to sit and swing. So, if I can grab a fan, I may just be here in the summer.

During the fall and spring, it is just the right temperature and the bugs are not too bad. You may have an occasional mosquito, but that you can live with.

During the winter, a quilt can be taken outside to wrap up in. In some ways that is a favorite time, because I always love wrapping up in a quilt.

This is also a great place for prayer time in the morning, sitting outside surrounded by the beauty of God’s creation. Frequently you have bird song for your morning hymns. You may have a Fox Squirrel that decides to “preach” to you, if you are lucky. Occasionally you may see a fox or a deer.

It is just a great place to enjoy a peaceful beginning to my day.

I hope you have a place to get a filling of peace for your day.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Traveling Alone

Monday Night

It is interesting how lonely a hotel room can be.

When Mitch and I go out of town, and stay in a hotel, it seems we need at least three more rooms for the two of us. We always have camera equipment, a laptop, luggage (how much depends on how many days). There is hardly enough room for all our stuff in a single hotel room, even a really big hotel room. We have even begun trying to find state parks near where ever we are going. By getting a cabin in a state park, we get two bedrooms, a living room and dining room. It is great!

Yet, here I sit in a hotel, by myself, and the room seems HUGE! And, QUIET! which it never is with the two of us in one hotel room. I even think some times, when we are at a hotel, that I will go for a walk, so I can have some quiet.

I need to record this and read it the next time we go out of town together. “Hey, remember when you were by yourself and it was QUIET!” That ought to tell me.

The reason for my trip alone, I am speaking tomorrow at a women’s luncheon. This is the fifth such event where I have been invited to speak. The luncheon’s are for a national women’s Christian organization. I am thankful for the opportunity to give my testimony to a group of women.

Tuesday Night

I am home. It is great!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Living Today

What a wonderful couple of days. Yesterday, we made a trip up the Flint River with friends. Left in the early morning, went by the new marina and on up the river. We stopped for lunch, just anchored near the edge. Food just seems to taste better on the water. Then we made our way back home. It was quite cool when we started out but by the time we returned home it had warmed up considerably.

This was the first time for our friends, going up the river. Also, going across the open water on the lake was new to them. We saw a few ducks, a couple of Canvas Backs. It is still early times yet before the ducks get here.

Today, I went to a family reunion. It was a side of the family that I had not met before, or at least I had not met most of them. While I go almost every year to a reunion of my maternal Grandmother’s side, this was my maternal Grandfather’s side. There were a number of new people to meet. It was nice.

Seeing the people there relating to each other, young and old, made me reflect on what family means to me. As I did, I thought about the amount of time I have to spend with my family.

I read a post today and the person mentioned “time in a bottle.” Could I bottle up time and just use it sparingly? Can it be a “condensed” version, so that it lasts longer than you think? I am not a greedy person, but I can tell you that sometimes I do get greedy with time. I want more . . . more hours in my day, more days in my week, more weeks in my month. You get the picture!

Instead I just have to make sure I don’t waste any of what I have!

One of the quotes in my inspiration book (the book I put together when I found out I had breast cancer) says, “You may be forced to die young, but whatever you do, don’t die early.”

So, please, make sure you are living every minute of every day.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A Beautiful Day

Yesterday was a difficult day. It has been thirty years since my brother died. When I realize he has been gone more years than he was here, it is most difficult for me. I still miss him . . .

I mentioned earlier in the week that the weather had been beautiful. We had opened up the house and enjoyed fall weather. Then summer returned. It was much warmer during the day and the night. And now . . . here we have fall again. We have opened the house back up. It is so nice.

I know we need rain, however the clear, blue skies are lovely.

As I sat here early this morning on my computer, I looked out the doors to see a Blue Bird taking a bath at the bird bath. I saw several of them later on as I was outside.

Today I made cookies, to take with us tomorrow on a trip up the river. I washed the swing that sits out in the yard. Allie and I went for a walk. We sat in the swing for a little while. I had a cup of tea while sitting in a rocking chair on the back porch. I have been reading Max Lucado’s “Come Thirsty”, and I sat and read while I drank my tea.

Mitch went over to the parsonage to work on it for awhile this morning.

Tonight we had dinner with some friends out of town. It was a lovely evening and we sat outside at the restaurant, instead of inside. It is such a treat to sit and visit and talk.

It was a slow day pretty much. It was however a most enjoyable day.

I hope you are enjoying beautiful days.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Please, you first!

Today a friend and I were talking. She had someone who made three appointments with her, and didn’t show up for the first two and then showed up an hour and a half late for the third. She was very frustrated. I could sympathize.
One thing led to another and we began discussing the why’s.
I said that I think it is a version of selfishness or at the least self-centeredness.
We talked on.
I told her that I believe this is some of what is wrong with the world today. From the banking scandal to the car pulling out in front of you in traffic, I do believe that if each of us thought of others first so many of our problems would go away. Oh, I know, this is simplistic. But, isn’t life really simple? Golden rule: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Wouldn’t that show a decided lack of selfishness?
I believe it would work. I believe it could work.
I’ll try it, will you join me . . .

Monday, September 29, 2008

Remember When - Grandson Walking

As a toddler walked across a restaurant, a number of years ago, Mitch asked the dad if he was glad the toddler was walking. The dad told Mitch that even thought he and his wife had been eagerly awaiting the time when their new daughter walked, they were rethinking the whole issue. Surely, any of you who have been involved in a child's life can remember that time: eagerly awaiting their ability to walk only to say, "What were we thinking?"

That is where we are now. Our news from the weekend, our grandson took his first independent steps. According to his mom, he took a couple of steps then set down. Then he got up and did it again. As all moms are, she is just delighted. She also sounds as if she thinks no child has ever done anything this wonderful before. (Of course that could be because the next thing he did was to stand on his head and look at her through his legs. Of course he is brilliant!)

I think one of the best things about this though is the sense of wonder in his mom's voice. Children can bring us such a sense of wonder. Her's is just beginning as he experiences the world around him.

This picture of William was created by his grandpa. He calls it "Out-of-bounds."

I hope you haven't lost the sense of wonder in your world. Look around you. Experience the taste of lemonade as if you have never tasted it. Look at a sunset as if it was the first one you have ever seen. Experience the wonder of it all . . .

Sunday, September 28, 2008

End of Summer or First of Fall

Fall or Autumn, depending on which you prefer, actually has been here (according to the calendar) for almost a week. The weather here has been just beautiful, cool nights and warm (not hot) days. We can actually open up the house and let the fresh air in. My husband is always surprised by how much better I sleep with fresh air in the house.

This weekend my daughter asked the question of why can't we have this weather all year. Sometimes I would agree with her. It is just so lovely. As with most things though, we really appreciate this weather because we do not have it all year. It is so beautiful to us because it is a treat, not an everyday meal if you will. Or so I sometimes think. Then there are the times when I just know I would never grow tired of weather like this. Perhaps not so much because of the "weather" as much as what it allows me to do: get out in the boat, work in the yard, swing in the swing in the yard, lay in the hammock outside. You get the picture!

Speaking of pictures, this is a sunset from our back porch as fall begins. Did I mention sitting in a rocking chair is another part of what this weather allows?

I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy this time of year and find some peace in the moment.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Last week we went to Gulf Shores, Alabama. It was a beautiful week. I gathered some sea shells and brought them home to do some macro photography. The white inside of the shell made them very difficult to focus on in some cases.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Technologically Challenged

Okay, this is something I have wanted to do. So, we will see how this goes. Please be patient as this is my first attempt.

It is a beautiful day here on the lake. Yesterday as my DH and I sat and ate lunch, we saw a small fawn in our back yard. He just wandered around for a while.

The hummingbirds have left for the winter. We had quite a number there for a few weeks. I am not sure but what the love bugs drove them off. The love bugs would get in the feeders and the birds would naturally quit feeding.

The weather has been nice enough for the last week to open up the house. We have been doing spring cleaning in the fall.

I hope if anyone finds their way here they are appreciating the beauty of this earth where ever they are.

Peace to you.