Wednesday, September 30, 2015


out of bed yesterday, when I heard a loud "whoosh".
Now, rather than inflate this story with a lot of unnecessary hot air, Viewer Dear...

I'm just going to show you the photos I took from an upstairs bedroom window.

And then, here are the pictures I took after scrambling into my clothes, and joining a few neighbors by the road.  They were as pleased as I was by this unexpected bright spot in our (very) local morning.

It was a bright and lofty but brief event. 
Before I knew it, a road crew had packed up and whisked that whoosh-less balloon away.
Life came to rest on hum-drum solid earth again.

Friday, September 25, 2015


Last week, Reader Dear,  I discovered a fascinating fact of which I'd heretofore been totally unaware.

It was an idea that I had never even contemplated prior to my newfound knowledge of it!   Here's the (relatively) short and uncomplicated story:

A form came in the mail: It was time to renew my driver's license photo.  It was mandated that the picture of me looking slightly younger would no longer suffice.  Dear Reader, as I am constantly doing battle with procrastination, I made an attempt to speedily take myself to the Division of Motor Vehicles.

In a (relatively) small room filled with folding chairs sat perhaps a dozen people.  They were all waiting their turn for a visit with one or the other of two men who were taking photos.  I took a number, then took a seat and waited.

In a (relatively) short time my number was called.  The man on the right motioned for me to take a seat at  his desk.  He had a few questions for me to answer, and asked them in a brisk and efficient   manner while looking at his screen.

And then, without a pause, he instructed,"Look right there at the blue dot.  Smile if  you wish.  And here we go!"

 I laughed.
"You're giving me permission to smile?!" I asked.

"Yes," he responded.  "Some states do not allow it!"*

( I'm allowing you time, Reader Dear, to pick yourself up off the floor)

When I, myself,  could scramble back into my seat, I asked the guy incredulously,  "Are you serious?!"  (Though the guy was hiding his funny-bone well, if humor was his goal.)

Public Service Announcement, Dear Reader:  If you have moved to the state of Virginia because it is "for lovers," please be informed it is only for NON-smiling lovers!

Monday, September 21, 2015


immutable laws of nature:

After the Sunday late-afternoon Ice Cream Treat,

comes the Sunday early-evening Sugar Buzz.

Saturday, September 19, 2015


from my generous friend Gerry:  Help me eat this pig!* (I paraphrase)
Reader Dear, it's always rain or shine for Gerry's Pig Roast.
And this year it rained!
All day there was one cloudburst after another, until it was time for The Yard Man and me to get into the car to set out for Gerry's house.
And then the rain slowed to a sprinkle.
By the time we arrived at the party, the rain had stopped; but Gerry's lawn leading back to the parking spot was a muddy mess. In fact, the  big attraction was a van whose wheels were spinning in the mud.
Happily for Gerry and all his throng of friends, a couple of guys managed to get the van unstuck, the rain stayed away, and this year's pig (once again) was a sweet swine delight!

This year, I didn't think to thank the pig until I was leaving.  He rolled his (fake) eyes at me.
*Thanks, Gerry!

Sunday, September 13, 2015


 somewhat on the order of a sundae, a convergence of good things arrived.  
It was two weeks ago when The Yard Man organized his very fine Annual Camp-Out (good as ice cream)!
Heaped atop (think whipped cream) was a visit by very close friends (three generations)!
A holiday weekend and a birthday celebration were sprinkled over all!
Another topping was the couldn't-be-better weather!  It was enough to make me suppose, Reader Dear, that luck is always on my side, that ice cream sundaes are calorie-free, and that birthday Sundays  will always end with bonfires.
 It was The Yard Man who was having a birthday (to the surprise of The Small Actor). It was The Yard Man and most of his male descendants, plus First Son-in-Law, who did the sleeping-in-tents part.  The rest of us  (guests and all) came for the glorious rest of it:  The supper and visiting and sitting under the stars and roasting marshmallows and singing happy birthday and hanging out...

...and then morning sunshine and breakfast and a jug of wildflowers and more bonhomie!

(That whipped cream addition made such
a fantastic Sunday sundae! )

Saturday, September 12, 2015


and get all kinds of attention for its showiness.
But take a look at this, Dear Viewer!
Summer's got its flashy colors, too!

My brother and his wife showed up first (ahead of autumn).  They were en route home from taking their daughter to college (what did I say; it's that time of year, you know).
My brother being a master gardener, he was happy to go take a look
at The Yard Man's produce-handling place of employment. (It's where I photoed all the bright, edible goodies!)
And, speaking of produce!
Do you recall, Reader Dear, I have a miniature orchard?

Yowzers!  Looks like I'm going to have an increase in harvest!
Not to mention that little watermelon that was produced all unexpectedly in my herb bed.

Viewer Dear, let's see how that developed
(I'm prepared to cut into it right now):

Surprise, surprise!  It's  yellow!
I am sampling a piece right now...
and,'s edible!
Not very sweet or yummy,
but, hey, edible!*

*I don't like to look gift horses in the mouth.

Friday, September 11, 2015


This is the last of the Shenandoah Valley vacation, Reader Dear.  It's still rolling along, but it is coming to an end.

There are  railroad tracks running through the valley, one on either side of that vacation house (I saw it as a perk, along with the wildflowers).


Look closely, Viewer Dear.  While it appears we made a visit to an auto garage, our jaunt was actually to a kids' museum (way more fun) in the nearby town of Harrisonburg, Virginia. 

Kids of all ages got to have a go at various career choices (oh, the exciting jobs!)


Okay, that's...
The End

Thursday, September 10, 2015


I'll try to do this in a twitter-esque manner (as few words as possible; only when the photos don't speak for themselves [and I can't stop myself], I'll blurt out a comment or two).

The Food: 

We all took turns with the food prep and clean-up.*

The Activities:

Reader Dear, the pre-hike picnic was a bust.  Too many gnats!

Finished the hike, uh-huh!**
But not the vacation...
( be continued)

**Every bit of a half-mile long***
***Maybe that was counting both ways