Blog, change, Home, Journey, Mountains, nature, reflection, Relaxation

A Day of Reflection

Day 26

After a night of unrest and a mind full of too many thoughts, I felt I needed a day of reflection. I was in search of a reminder of the blessings I have received and a moment to breathe in nature. It was a glorious much needed day with my husband.

Today I will not bore you with a lot of words. Instead I will share with you the glory that is my home and hope that it does as much for you as it did for me.

Before we started our adventure, we went to vote. Please VOTE!!

The Blue Ridge Parkway

We got on the parkway near the Arboretum. It is such a calm and beautiful drive. There wasn’t a lot of color, but it is still beautiful just the same.

We stopped at several outlooks on our way. We met a cute couple from Cleveland and happily took photos of them at Haw Creek Overlook.

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I even did a short video of the drive if you want to travel along with us.

We continued on and the colors got a little more vibrant as we ventured further north. The overlooks were simply gorgeous everywhere we stopped. Next stop was Craven Gap.

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We took a few snapshots on the way a little further north.

We made a few more stops at overlooks until we reached Craggy Gardens. It is supposed to be one of the most beautiful stops on the highway for wild flowers and blooms during the spring and summer. Of course we are too late for that, but we enjoyed seeing the Catawba Rhododendron trunks devoid of most of their leaves. We did not make the 7 mile hike up to Craggy Dome or Craggy Pinnacle, but it is on our list for a future hike.

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All in all it was a fabulous day of renewal. A day that I needed. A day that reminded me that we are small and our problems and worries are small. We just need to embrace one another in the best way we can.

On the way home, we went by the Biltmore and enjoyed a Winky Bar Sundae at The Creamery. We saw a beautiful piece of an almost hidden rainbow on the drive home and ended up seeing the sun setting just above the ridge as we took our last turn toward home. Mother Nature was showing off just a tad bit today. And I am thankful she did.

“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings.
Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.
The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.” 

John Muir

 

art, Blog, Cooking, creativity, Food, friends, jewelry, Relaxation, Writing

Downtime

Day 25

Day 25 — wow, that is almost a month. I must say this has been a little easier than I anticipated, but I still have 11+ months to go so I should not be getting too cocky about this yet. It has been good for me. My blog is like my best friend. I come here to unload my problems or just chat about my day.

I am still recovering from yesterday. I slept in fairly late, but I blame that on the medicine I took yesterday. I am feeling better, but still have moments here and there that let me know I am not yet recovered.

Taking it Easy

As I said, I got up late but managed to fix some breakfast for hubby and I. Just simple scrambled eggs and toast. It was nice to just sit together and chat for a few minutes. Just fixing a little breakfast took more energy than I thought, so I sat down and caught up on email and social media.

NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is coming up in a few days and I tried to recruit a few people to write along with me. So far, one person — everyone else — no cigar. I probably will not meet my goal, but I am going to give it a try. Who knows, I might just come up with the next great American novel.

I had an enjoyable video chat with my daughter and my youngest granddaughter who is home sick this week. Technology is amazing and I am always so excited to see her and see how much she has changed. She is at the age where every day it is some new word or new action. It fills my heart with such joy.

We had tuna salad for lunch and then I had a quick chat with my son who filled me in on all the fun of my granddaughter’s birthday party that we unfortunately missed. It’s always nice to chat with him, except that I learned my grandson is sick with a virus. At least it is nothing serious. My poor little ones!

Creating

ButterBell
Butter Bell

Today was the perfect day to pull out those watercolor pencils I bought. I have not tried to sketch anything in so long I was very tentative about it. I did play with some rough sketches a little. Results were not great, however, I am pleased with at least the effort. I know the more I practice the better it will be. I’ve not used watercolor pencils much so that will be a bit of a learning curve as well.

I created a new cover for my Facebook page that reflects how I am feeling about the hate so prevalent in our world right now. It makes me feel better to find some outlet to express how I feel, but I also know my vote is the most powerful action I can take.

44943354_10156876839606057_2837108756964179968_oAfter lunch I managed to take a few pictures of the rings I made in my ill-fated weekend workshop. They do not have the finish I would have liked, but I am happy with them just the same. At least I am creating again and that feels good.

I have a pot of chili on the stove simmering in preparation for dinner and hopefully some quarts to go into the freezer. I was inspired after hearing my good friend Lauren was enjoying some split pea soup. I love split pea soup but it is the one soup that always fails me!

All in all it was a good day of rest and creativity. A welcome respite from the chaos of the world.

How was your day?

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“Rest and be thankful.”
William Wordsworth

 

 

 

 

attitude, Blog, change, Home, Relaxation

Ebb and Flow of Life

Day 10

IMG_0898Today life is moving at a different pace and in a different direction than I imagined. We can make plans and decide how things are going to fall into place and then things change. Perhaps the change is subtle and perhaps it will be dramatic but life does not sit still. If we are not engaged it can and will happen around us.

Much like the tides that calm us or threaten us, things change. Sometimes we are soothed by the sweet sounds of the surf breaking and rolling peacefully to the shore. Sometimes, the waves pound so hard, we take shelter. There is no shelter from life – we just find momentary places to shield ourselves from the storm of the day and then we move on.

Going With The Flow

Today I am learning to absorb the rhythm of my life here in these foothills. I am more aware of the ebb and flow and the pace at which life unfurls. We are not always open to or enthralled by the changes, but change does not seek our approval. There is a level of acceptance we must find and then perhaps change our thinking to embrace the changes that unfold around us.

There is a peace to be found in accepting what we cannot change. We may fight it and resist it, but at some point we find acceptance. Changes can be big or small – a cancelled date with a good friend, a change in weather, running out of your favorite tea – anything. It seems to me the ability of the human spirit to adapt to changes is important in finding happiness.

So, today, I am at peace with the small ripples in my pond. As I look at them, starting small and tight and slowly expanding until they eventually disappear, I realize the things that throw us curve balls do dissipate. It just takes time.

I am here at home spending a quiet and uneventful afternoon. The day was not as I had imagined, but everything is okay as it is. I have adjusted and accepted the ripples in my pond. In a strange way, I am now finding them somewhat relaxing.

Life is all about perception.

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“Sometimes the most scenic roads in life are
the detours you didn’t mean to take.” 
Angela N. Blount

 

Blog, nature, Relaxation

Morning Has Broken

Day 9

IMG_7172Morning is my favorite time of day, especially on a day when the sun presents itself in such a magnificent way. I stepped outside on the deck and saw the sun starting to peek through the trees. A new day. A new decision about how to spend my time.

The birds are up well before the sun makes its appearance, clamoring to be fed. It has always amazed me how quickly they are out scurrying for food. This morning it was the house finch and the cardinals. The cardinals tend to arrive early and come back late in the afternoon.

The overnight temperature was cooler last night and I have not seen many of the migrating birds today. Maybe they decided it was time to move on.

Sometimes days start with plans and intentions that melt away into something totally different. Today was to be one of those days. Good intentions of things to be done, but opting instead for writing or reading or good conversation. We worry a lot about this thing called productivity – of always being ‘on’ – of always producing something. It is something I have battled for much of my life.

I remember my son getting upset when I would sweep up his drinking glass and wash it immediately as he placed it on the counter. ‘Mom, I can use that glass again.’ Always picking up and moving from room to room, wiping the kitchen counter, doing laundry and needing to be busy. I am like the birds.

Then I Remembered the Sun

Slowly and magnificently climbing above the trees. Gently spreading warmth to everything in its path. It makes a slow and deliberate path across the sky – taking a full day to do what it needs to do.

IMG_7092Yesterday at the Arboretum, I saw a beautiful quilt hung in celebration of the handcrafts of the Appalachian mountains. It was stunning.

Suddenly I was whisked back to my childhood watching the women in my life spending countless hours piecing quilts. It was only after the pieces were laboriously pieced together that the quilting could begin.

A handmade quilt is exquisite in its form, design and function , but it does not happen quickly.

Exercising Patience

IMG_7173So today, I spent a lot of time talking to my mother-in-law and just thinking. I watched the sun move across the room – slowly and methodically.

It has taken a full day, but the sun is now dropping below the trees and eventually it will dip below the mountains.

But those birds – they are still at it.

I am learning to exercise patience. To work but also relax. I don’t think every day must be about accomplishing some huge undertaking. I think some days can simply be about relaxing and enjoying this place we call home.

I’m learning to be more like the sun.

“Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind.” 
David G. Allen