Wednesday, April 16, 2014

amish country swan encounter

Hi my name is Lue and I can say I got chased by a swan. 

Here is the back story. Mr. Wonderful and I have decided to carve out a portion of a flower bed in front of our little cottage on the hill and make a patio with pavers and then place a porch swing and A Frame on the patio so that we can enjoy casual summer evenings outside in comfort. We have a view to be enjoyed and usually we do so from the stoop, or just standing or on lawn chairs. But now we really want a nook, a real spot that is always there, ready for us to pause in the busy-ness of life and just sit and take in the fresh air and enjoy the scenery that surrounds us. 

We always price shop for everything we do. We are stingy tightwads frugal that way, or at least we make a stab at it. So, after I got home from my 8-5 we hopped into Mr. Wonderful's rusty old S-10 and we headed down the Amish Country Highway to the first "surplus store". Not knowing for sure where it is at and after having asked my friend I was certain I was able to direct Mr. Wonderful right to it, Well, I directed him to a business, but it was not a surplus store, but some other business, I can't remember because this is where I had the swan encounter and everything else faded into that black hole in my memory. This business had a sort of circular drive, it is actually at the home of the business owner, so there was the house, barn and store at this place and the circular driveway and in the middle of the circle was a glorious pond and a beautiful swan swimming. As soon as I saw him I was reaching back into the truck for my trusty old camera because I was not passing up such an opportunity. 

You know what? 


was not friendly at all.

I was so incredibly disappointed, I wanted him to peacefully swim in his little pond and pose, but he had other ideas because his wife was over at the side of the pond in a little house that looks similar to a dog house, sitting on a nest of eggs. 

He was protecting her. 

I got it and so I spoke softly and tried to get him to relax. 

Yeah, no relaxing, he was not having any of that stuff. He would stretch his head and neck through the fence and tried to peck me. What a beautiful bird and I was not able to get any really good pictures of him. 

So incredibly frustrated, but here are some of what I did get to take. 

This is what he looked like for the most part. He would stretch as far as he could go to get to me.

I wish I could have gotten a much better picture of his very large webbed feet. They were gorgeous for a bird like that and when he ran and walked it made a "platt platt" sound. So cute! 

Here is is wife, how sweet and adorable, busy hatching her eggs. 

A shot of the pond. I love the background as well. Right smack dab in the midst of Amish Country. 

Here he comes running at break neck speed across the ground and as soon as he hit the fence he again started to stretch his neck out to peck me and by now Mr. Wonderful had driven the truck up to where I was and it was close quarters to the fence and I had to make a run for it and open the door and jump in before he pecked me. I was squealing and giggling and I could hear him right behind me when I made my mad dash for the truck. I know I've not moved that fast since I was a kid!!!!

We did find the surplus store and it was closed but we got out and walked around a bit, checking out the pavers in stock. I took some pictures. 

Landscape pavers all over the place, seconds that need to be picked through to find enough good ones to build whatever you are making. Mr. Wonderful thinks it isn't worth the time and aggravation to save a few dollars, so he is going to go with our favorite DIY store and let them help us. 

Mr. Wonderful checking out the store hours. 

As I was waiting for Mr. Wonderful this scene just happened before my eyes. LOVE!

A lone biker passed me, smiled hello, and then he mosied on. 

After our adventure we drove around a bit, we found another surplus store, but it was more of the same thing and we weren't really interested so we back tracked a bit and stopped at a new for us restaurant way out in the middle of nowhere. I think it was called Fire and Ice Pub or something like that. Mr. Wonderful said he coworker said it was a wonderful spot to eat at, but it is so busy on the weekends so it was a good time for us to actually go tonight. 

We walked inside and the only thing I could think of was "cowboy". It was a little more bare inside than I thought it might be and it smelled a little bit like old smoke, you know back when the places were allowed to have smoking indoors and the smell kind of lingers. (My nose is very sensitive and I smell things other folks don't.) 

The menu was small. We like that. That means they have fresh food, because the food they make gets ordered and moved out of the kitchen. Restaurants with massive menus always worry us a bit. 

We both opted for one dish meals. My dish was called The Hog Trough, I think. It had two baked potatoes on the bottom, layered with cheddar cheese, pulled pork, their specialty barbeque sauce, Fire and Ice, and a very yummy cole slaw on top. It was so delicious. Everything about it was just down home yummy and I can't wait to go back and try other things, namely, "beer batter french fries". How delicious does that sound? 

After we had ordered our meals, we sat there visiting and in walks a lady and I immediately knew who she was. I went a little bit weak inside because for me she has the same as "celebrity status" in my world. She is a local business owner and blogger and I follow her on Facebook and read her blog and I've even tried her wonderful granola bars. There she was, right there in the same room as me and I was a little bit "star struck". 

Finally I said to Mr. Wonderful, "Lena, that blogger whose blog I read is over there." I think I squealed just a little bit. After a minute of being star struck I was thinking to myself  if someone was in the same room as I and read my blog and wouldn't come and introduce themselves to me, I would be so disappointed, so after we finished our very yummy meals, I mustered up courage to disturb this wonderful lady and her friend and I introduced myself and told her that I enjoy her blog and then I saw she was starting to recognize me too! It was a moment for sure! She reads my blog too! I knew she had been on my blog at least once, but had no idea she actually comes back and reads. It absolutely warmed my heart to be able to visit with her and her friend for a couple minutes. 

I almost missed the moment by leaving without introducing myself because I am so uncomfortable in such a situation. But, what a warm and friendly person she is to talk to and she put me right at ease. It felt like we are friends already and on the way home I was thinking back to our conversation and how I wished I had said this to her and asked her that. Hopefully our paths will cross again sometime soon and we can sit down for a real visit. 

If you are interested, you can go here to check out her blog. 

If you visit her and you like what you read, leave her a little message and tell her I sent you. 

to be a friend or not to be a friend, that is the question

The first thing I have to admit is that I make mistakes and when they are found out I just want to crawl in a hole and shrink out of sight. A few months back I made what I found out to be the unforgivable boo boo. My intent was not to hurt my friend, and I don't think I hurt her, but made her angry with me and she shot a few angry text messages at me and I profusely apologized, over and over and over again, but my "friend" was not having it and since that awful night, we have not been in contact in any way, shape or form. This is not the first time this happened with her, nearly six years ago something else happened, we had been together one night with another friend, laughing giggling all evening long. We had long and loud belly laughs, the three of us did, and when we parted ways we were still giggling. The next morning when I checked my emails I had a lengthy email from this "friend" and she told me she had to quit our friendship and told me the reasons why and I was just stunned and shocked and reeling. We went from being best friends to not even getting a second chance for me to make things right. Our friendship was over and kaput. She was my very best friend at the time and it hurt for me to read her words and understand where she was coming from, for the most part it didn't make sense to me at all and so for that reason I was just as hurt as I was confused. My daughter's wedding was coming up that Fall and I so badly wanted her to be there, but the wedding came and went, life went on and for a few years I would think about her and long for our friendship to be okay the way it used to be. I missed my friend. so. much. And then a couple years later and on occasion she would email me and ask me things, usually questions about the Amish and we struck up a friendship again, never meeting face to face, but visiting with each other via the phone every so often and I thought things were good until my big boo boo a couple months ago. 

I apologized and asking her forgiveness. A few times. I really didn't fully understand where she was coming from, but the bottom line was we had some serious miscommunication and I let her down and it was unforgivable. I felt defeated and confused yet again and so I made a decision that night and have not looked back. I can't have folks in my life who make a drama out of every little thing and then can't accept an apology. 

This took me back a couple years. I had another "friend" and one night we had a little bit of a debate about a subject and I came away from that night thinking she had "won" the debate. Two days later I find her railing about me on social media. I was appalled, to say the least, and hurt and feeling very misunderstood. It didn't take me long to figure out what that friendship's status was. Her friends on social media? Yes, they all chimed in and told her how awful this person was and how they had friends like that too and on and on. 

I. felt. about. this. big.

On many levels I don't understand what happened in both cases. But as I usually do with all things in life I ask myself a couple of hard questions. What do I know about the situation? As I took a mental tally of both of my friend's actions I was able to think about all their other friendships I knew about and they were always having drama with someone. The other question I ask myself often is "What is the truth about this situation?" The truth is that I tried to apologize to the one friend. The other friend, when she had gone to social media to make her point to me, I felt like she was saying it was all over and she held no value in our friendship. I just kind of washed my hands of that friendship right away. It didn't even hurt, I saw her do it to others over the years, always and forever having drama with someone, always a fight going on, and I knew it was my turn now. I guess you could say, I knew her "by her fruits" and when she lashed out at me, I was done, finished, kaput. I don't hate her, I feel sorry for her. It is my opinion that you can't help that kind of person, you can't be their friend. They don't really want friends, they want people to be subjects in their lives who they can bat around and beat up at a whim. It is all about them. As I looked at what had happened between the two of us, we had a debate, it wasn't a one sided thing and I don't know what I did wrong. We were both in the debate, she won, hands down. I wasn't sure why I had to apologize. 

Is it okay to "walk away" from a friendship?

At this point if you bring a certain level of "drama" into my life, I will back away from you. As I get older I  feel like I know what I can put up with and what I can't. For quite awhile I wrestled with this because being a Christian, doesn't that mean I need to lie down and allow others to walk all over my feelings and emotions and put up with their drama? I think so, on some levels, because a Christian has been taught about forgiveness and grace and mercy and where it applies. But then there are the abusers, the ones who are Christians and feel like these principles don't apply to them, only to the subjects they have in their lives. They are the ones who get to make the rules and call other folks out in their shortcomings, and that doesn't feel so good for me. 

So, today I walk this earth knowing what I look for in friendships, I know what I value and I know what I will put up with. Maybe some folks reading this will say I am coming across as unforgiving and I am very wrong in stepping away from these friendships. 

My 'gauge" has been of how I felt since walking away. This last "episode", after having asked for forgiveness multiple times and not really receiving any, it has been "freeing" to move on and away. I guess the second time around I finally got it that she wasn't looking for a friend, but a person she could control and manipulate. I'm not an emotional punching bag that you can take a swing at when you please.

As far as I know neither of these ladies know I have a blog. Well, the one knows, but she told me she didn't want to read it. She told me that isn't the kind of "genre" she was into. At the moment she is "into" prayer and learning all about it. I'm glad she has an interest in something, don't get me wrong, but when she said that she made me feel like she didn't care, which is okay, she is allowed to do that, I'm just saying, I'm not posting this because I want to make a point to someone in a roundabout way. They don't come here and read as far as I know. 

So, it is taking me awhile to get to my point here, but I've been thinking about friendships and have a little list of what is important to me in a friend. 

1. you have to be able to have fun.

2. be serious and have deep talks about whatever is going on in our lives at the moment

3. forgiving

4. caring

5. there should be a mutual "like" for each other

6. it ends up being a win/win situation for both people, you balance each other out in some way. If I look at each of my friends I can think of a reason why they are in my life and what they bring into my life that enhances it and I have a feeling they could say the same thing about me.

7. we know each others flaws and can still look each other in the eye and can still respect each other

8. if there is a problem, we can be honest with each other and work through whatever it is and move forward in the friendship

9. there is that level of accountability that comes with true friendship, we help each other make good decisions in life, we help each other grow 

10. we accept each other for who we are and how uniquely God designed each of us.

11.don't "use" each other for monetary gain

12. the friendship is not one-sided, meaning both people will pick up the phone on occasion, or make plans for a get together

My takeaway from these situation has been that God allows us to go through things so we can learn from them. Having gone through walking away from/losing two "friendships" I kind of grew my list of what I want in a friendship. I don't have to check off each item on my list before you can be my friend, but it is something to think about if there is a lot of drama going on and I start to feel like an emotional punching bag for someone to beat up on. 

I would love to hear what you value in a friendship. This subject is near to my heart, I value my friends and they have helped me grow and have enhanced my life so very much. Each one being a special blessing for sure. 

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art...It has no survival value; rather it is one of those thing that give value to survival." C S Lewis

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Looking in my Rear View Mirror

Sunday, April 13, 2014

velveeta cheese and chef boyardee

I made lasagna today. A pan to share with a friend and a pan for us. I make a Bechamel cheese sauce to go in my lasagna. It really cuts the tomato and makes a nice creamy lasagna, so there were all kinds of things going on my stove top and kitchen counter early this morning. Bechamel sauce, meat sauce, ricotta mixture, lasagna get the picture? 

While I was mixing and stirring and simmering I started to think back at some of the things we used to eat when I was a kid. One thing that mom always had on hand was Velveeta Cheese and we put it in everything. We melted it into soups and casseroles and toasted cheese sandwiches and used it for the cheese to top our homemade pizza's

As I thought about those pizza's, I also remembered where the pizza crust and sauce came from. A box, a Chef Boyardee box, to be precise. The crust was nothing like the crusts you get if you order from a pizza shop nowadays. If I remember correctly it was more like a spongy, sweet crust.  I'm surprised to see they are still able to sell them. Maybe the recipe is better than it used to be? 

At first thought my stomach was a little bit appalled that I would have ever thought that kind of pizza would have been good with slabs of Velveeta Cheese melted on top, but then I reined in my thoughts and applied some "mercy", remembering that "back then", 35-40 years ago we didn't have the pizza shops around the corner ready to deliver pizza at our whim like we do today. If we wanted pizza we would have to make it and the Amish do not come from Italian descent, we aren't born with olive oil in one hand and a garlic clove and a sprig of oregano in the other, rather we are born with a pound of  butter in one hand and a 25 pound bag of sugar in the other. 

After Mr. Wonderful and I started dating and I would be at his house for dinner, especially Saturday evening dinner, there was their version of pizza, the crust made with Bisquick. The pizza sauce was homemade and sweet, almost like ketchup in flavor. The toppings varied in both my mother and mother in law's kitchens. Usually there was hamburger on top and maybe some onions and canned mushroom, and always the Velveeta Cheese. 

In today's world, now that I have access to television in three rooms in our little cottage on the hill, I have been able to go to school via The Food Network and learn from top chef's all over the world. They have opened my taste buds and eyes for what is good and what you let go by the wayside. The biggest thing I've learned from The Food Network chefs is about the cheese. Cheese brings flavor and there are more cheeses in the world than the Velveeta and Swiss cheeses that I grew up with. I used to have Velveeta on hand in my refrigerator at all times, feeling an almost apprehension if I used the last of a loaf and didn't have a reserve to lean on by the time we went food shopping. Today, Velveeta no longer reigns supreme in my kitchen. I seldom use it. I always thought  macaroni and cheese wouldn't have flavor and creamy texture without the Velveeta, but in today's world I make 3 and 4 cheese macaroni dishes and then I bake it off with Panko crumbs and butter to crisp up the top and we end up with a very delicate and elegant entree. 



Baked Macaroni and Cheese

My favorite cheeses are, locally, Steiners Swiss Cheese, and then I also like to keep chunks of Baby Swiss, Havarti, Asiago, Provolone, and Parmesan in my fridge, but don't always have them all on hand at once. I like to use Sharp Cheddar when I need a more orange color for a dish, like a salad or appetizer. 

I was told that Steiners Swiss Cheese is made with the Saturday night milk. It is unseparated, so the cream remains in the milk and you get this amazing creamy swiss cheese and full of flavor. (I'm always looking for flavor, just ask my sister.)

Having said all that, I know Velveeta Cheese is used by many because I read recently there is a real shortage of Velveeta Cheese so I guess folks are still mixing and stirring it into all kinds of dishes, or there wouldn't be a shortage, huh? If you use it and like it, don't think I sit in judgement of you. Personally, I've moved on, that doesn't mean everyone else has to. 

 I also know that some folks can't afford to purchase more expensive chunks of cheese and if we were feeding a large family I am sure I would cook more like my mother and mother in law did, feeding the family on stretched out dollars.

I found this picture of a pizza that look similar to my childhood pizza's. Only difference is the shape, we always made them in rectangular baking sheets.

My favorite pizza in the whole wide world is a light and pillow-y crust, a bit of olive oil on the crust, top it with some mozzarella cheese, sprinkle a few black olives, onions, fresh mushroom, cherry tomatoes - halved, fresh basil leaves, a few bacon bits and more mozzarella, with some Parmesan sprinkled on top and more olive oil drizzled on top of the parm. Talk about flavorful and delicate! 

Unsalted and Seasoned

I like healthy but with flavor. I watch salt intake and don't use a lot of salt to season, only to enhance the seasonings I use in my dishes, but never to be the source of flavor. 

My favorite seasoning is garlic powder, not garlic salt, and then if needed I add some salt.

 I use all unsalted butter as well. 

Other favorite seasonings are cumin, rosemary, black pepper, onion powder, and scantily will use Lawry's Seasoning salt at times. 

When cooking I also use a ton of onions and garlic. It is amazing what those two can do to a dish and I use them liberally. At times my kitchen smells like an Italian kitchen because of all the flavors I use. (I love to confuse people.) 

So, what are some ingredients your mama used, but you no longer use?

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

for behold the winter is past.....


Oops, forgive me, I'm in the wrong season. It is Spring time! How do I know? Well let me count the ways. 

That smell.


Not so pleasant.


Wafting its way into our little cottage. 

I smelled it immediately when I turned on to our road this afternoon, and even more as I pulled into our driveway and there it was lingering in our garage. 

I don't care. 

I love Spring and everything that goes with it. I am sitting here at our dining room table with the french door open wide, I feel the gusty wind now and then, the sun is perched on my shoulder, peering at my words on my laptop. All is so well in my world this moment. 

The farmers are in their fields plowing, another very sure sign that Spring has sprung. On my lunch break today I watched two teams of horses in a field laboring up and down the field turning the dead winter grass into straight coils of brown goodness. 

The field is nearly finished. 

There is nothing like newness of life to make folks smile more and to have a spring in their steps. I find folks a lot happier when I'm out and about. The drab and the dreary making its way into our past and the sunshine and all it holds in our present and future. 

I notice that the grasses are turning greener each day as I look out over the landscape. I know that in only a few short weeks, barring any kind of natural disaster, our landscape will have a nice emerald green carpet all over the ground and atop the carpet will be nice colors of other shades of greens and browns and flower colors and the sky will have a clear blue above our heads and the only thing left for me to do is be in awe of the beauty that has been provided for my pleasure. The only thing left for me to do is to stop and smell those roses, to pause and listen to the music of the crickets and the birds and maybe a cat fight off in the distance. (I mention the cat fights only because they are something very natural in my part of the world.

How are you enjoying this Spring? Are you stopping and observing its beauty? Are you taking in the wonder of the newness of life? I only wish I had more time in my day to take in more of God's wondrous world. 

In light of the topic for this blog I've been looking at Bible verses about Spring or that can relate to springtime. I found these beautiful verses that say it just like it is in my heart tonight. 

Song of Solomon 2: 11,12

For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.

Beautiful Bible verses and so fitting! 

I'm so glad you are here. I don't know what brought you here, my only "goal" is to make friends and to have fun with my blog and hopefully, possibly, inspire others to stop and smell the roses in their lives. God provides us each with special bits of beauty all around us. It is here for us to enjoy and behold in many ways. He has special things planned just for you....and me. 

If you are new to my blog and would like to stay connected, I invite you to skip over to my Facebook page and "like" it so you will get all my updates. I post extra pictures and words over there as I can. I love to hear from my readers, it is what keeps me inspired on some level and also encouraged. Sometimes...writers live in a lonely world. I love interaction. Also, if you know of anyone who would enjoy my ramblings and pictures, I invite you to share my blog with them. 

Love and Blessings to all! 

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Saturday, April 5, 2014

Creeks, Farms, and Trees

 Most generally Mr. Wonderful and I spend Friday evening out with friends, usually our Amish friends and we go out to eat and maybe some shopping or come back to our house to watch some television, or we go driving around checking out the landscape. Because our week had been so busy we didn't make plans to go do anything last night. When I came home from my 8-5 I asked Mr. Wonderful if he would want to go out to take pictures of creeks in our area. He looked at me like, "say what?" but smiled and said, "sure, let's go." 

I can't tell you how supportive my husband is of my whims, especially when he knows it is something for my blog. He loves when I write. He has always been my number one supporter, and so he was "game" to go take pictures of creeks. 

Why creeks? I don't know, just because. I happen to drive by a couple creeks each day and I've been noticing them and just wanted to go capture a few on camera last night to see what they look like in a picture. So, for a tour of what we saw last night, please keep on reading. 


This creek is actually flooded and in parts is all over the farmer's field. I have to say as I stare at this picture I can't help but notice how the trees and the sky just kind of make their own picture. How beautiful! 

Here is part of the flooding. The water is so powerful when you stand at the side of the road and just take it in. The large trees are absolutely trapped in the water, no place to go, but stand still. 

This reminded me of the Everglades for some reason. It has a swampy feel to it for me. 

I love this creek, it knows where it is going and doesn't dilly dally around, it is flowing quickly, in a pretty straight line at that. 

A little farm creek, I love the rocks, all nice and round, from years of wear and tear of the water. 

See, here the rocks are a little bit more profound. 

There she goes, flowing pretty swiftly, even if she is a smaller creek. The waters are so heavy, I think that is why the creeks are all flowing so fast. 

Loving the bend in this creek. 

Some greenery by this creek and a little bit of overflow. 

Not pretty at all, but it is a creek. 

The green is coming through by this creek as well. I think this will be a beautiful picture later in the summer when everything is green. I will return. 

I found some ducks swimming on a farm pond. I just love this picture. The waves in the water show how windy it was last night. The ducks didn't mind, they just kept paddling along. It was cold too. I was chilled to the bone by the time we returned home. I ended up in bed with the heating pad on me because I could not get warmed up after our excursion.

It was worth it! 

And a family of geese, see the ripples in the water. It was windy as all get out yesterday. 


What can I say? It is a farm on a hill. A pretty large farm. If you have been following my blog for any length of time now you will know that I love having something act like a barrier between me and what I am shooting. For some reason it feels more artistic to me. I feel like the whole picture is being used up. Maybe I can't explain what I'm thinking, doesn't matter, I like the twigs in the picture. 

The farm is on a bend and a road lies between the house and the barn. I always wonder about those set ups. I am sure it is a major concern for families with small children running back and forth from house to barn. 

For me, this is the ugliest farm we have in the area, only because of the faded yellow on the barn. I wish they would paint it barn red. That would be my preference. I love the red barns the best. 

Some green in this picture. Hey, we are starting to see signs of Spring!

The house to the farm above. I just liked it so I uploaded it so you could see it too. 

Lot's of silos on this farm. I don't think it is an Amish farm. 

Beautiful red buildings. Love the red, white and blue in this picture. 

I found a barn peeking up over the hill.

Sometimes when I shoot a picture and then come home and look at it, I see how wonderful it really is. I love the gray/blue door and the almost starkness of the picture. Can I say "haunted" when I know that only a few seconds earlier little kiddos were on the porch checking me out and then when they saw me lift my camera they scattered into the house. I was actually taking pictures of milk cans by the road when this all occurred. 

Random Pictures

In the middle of nowhere, on a random fence post there is a no hunting/no trespassing sign. I found it a bit odd in our neck of the woods. 

A man door set into the fence. Must be the farmer often passes through this fence and decided to save himself some time. I don't know, maybe I'm incorrect in my assumptions, but it sounds good to me. 

Milk cans, but then I notice the driveway and the house right at the end of the driveway. I bet this is beautiful in the summer time. Notice the very muddy driveway. This kind of Amish (Swartzentruber) aren't allowed to gravel their driveways. At the moment when you are out and about, you will see these black buggies with "muddy yellow" wheels trotting down the road. they have to wade the mud because there is no other way for them. The milk cans at the end of the driveway are because no truck would ever make it in that kind of driveway without getting stuck so the farmer has to bring the milk to the end of the driveway. 

This was supposed to be all about the milk cans, but the tree and the sky outshine any milk cans that may or may not be in the picture. Sometimes it just happens that way. I love it. 

This dog was watching me take pictures. He was settled in his spot, never once did a "woof" come out of him. You can tell he was keeping watch, but he wasn't excited in the least little bit. I like dogs who don't over react. Oh, and the tree branches framing the picture? Love, love. I also like the leaves on the lawn, looks soft and comfortable for a nice dog to relax on.

Cement bridge guard rails. LOVE! 


This tree was a bit comical to me, it felt to me like it was pointing to go thataway. 

A line of trees and a rolling gray sky. How pretty. 

An orchard through a fence. Looks stark and cold right now. 

I said before how windy it was last night, these branches attest to it. 


And now, to my very favorite moment last night. Standing there looking up at this tree, high on a hill, I was taken aback at how beautiful it look against the rolling sky. I'm not sure which shot I like best, this one or the next one. I would love feed back from my readers which picture you like best. One or Two?


I wish I could show all of you in real life what I get to experience every day. This is my way of sharing my country with folks who don't get to experience it like I do. I hope you enjoy my pictures and my thoughts. If you do, and know of someone who would enjoy, I invite you to share my blog and/or Facebook page with them. If you are new to my blog, and you would like to stay connected, you can go to my Facebook page and "like" it and you will get all my updates and periodically I even do giveaways, so there is always something to look forward to.