Saturday, July 28, 2012

Olympics 2012

The London Olympics Opening Ceremony was incredible.

Let's talk about Queen Elizabeth II and James Bond.  She is awesome!

The Chariots of Fire theme song.  Beautiful.
Mr. Bean.  Hilarious (although, all the focus on him detracted from the song).

The flags wrapping around the hill.  Lovely.

The flame being transferred and lit!  Such a neat experience.
Can you imagine being those kids who got to light it?

The fireworks were spectacular!  Breathtaking.  All I could say was, "Wow."

Paul McCartney singing Hey Jude was fabulous.  While listening, I wondered what was going through his mind.  Was he thinking about his friends?  The first time he sang the song with them?  Writing the song?

Today, I've been watching tennis and a little swimming.
I'm having to adjust my thinking.  I don't cheer for many American tennis players.
But, now I'm supposed to.
Good thing Federer was playing a Colombian.
I can't cheer for an American over Federer.

But, I get to cheer for the Brits, too!

I'm so proud to be English.

Taken from the BBC
Taken from Here
Taken from Here
Happy Olympics!!!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Friday's Letters: Olympics, Blackberries, and My Countries!

Dear Blackberries, thank you for being so delicious in my cobbler.  Dear UK, thank you for letting me claim you as one of my countries!  I am watching the Olympics Opening Ceremony!  Very impressive and entertaining.  Dear Virginia, I love you in the summertime!  I love your beautiful mountains and rivers.  Dear Abby and Amanda, I had so much fun with you yesterday!  Dear Saturday, I'm excited to watch Pride and Prejudice with Mama and Scarlet.  Dear Queen Elizabeth II, way to be awesome!  I already knew you played Wii with your grandchildren, and now you are hanging out with James Bond and parachuting from helicopters.  Dear Self, I am considering getting a corgi.  Dear Weather, THANK YOU for cooling down!!!!!  Dear Weekend, I'm excited for all that is in store!

Check out Ashley's Blog Adventures of Newlyweds


Thursday, July 26, 2012

River Time & Blackberries!

Abby, Amanda, and I decided to have a picnic and go swimming this afternoon.

I packed a basket of bread, cheese, jam, books, and Vogue.
We had a drink cooler of pink lemonade.
And, champagne and wine glasses for drinking.  (they make everything more fun)

We had to hunt for a while, finally stopping at Warm Springs Market for directions.
When we reached Hidden Valley and decided to sit on the concrete section of the bridge.

We enjoyed the view...

And sat with our feet in the water...

As we left, Amanda and Abby wanted to ride in the back.
Since they were old enough, I decided to let them : )

Driving out, I had to stop and shoot the view!

After dropping the girls off at their various locations, I went to the upper farm and picked blackberries!

The fields were full of Queen Anne's Lace and other flowers!

While driving over the mountain I passed this family of horses.

It was a truly wonderful time.
I can't wait to do it again!

P.S.  I recommend drinking pink lemonade out of special glasses while sitting in the river!
Very refreshing!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Leave a Note!

One of the fun aspects of blogging is the ability to connect with my readers.

Interestingly, Russia pops up a lot in my blog stats.  Someone over there is reading (I'd love to know who)!

It's fun seeing the numbers go up as people read, but it is disheartening to see the level of comments so low.

I am guilty of reading, thinking, and not commenting, too.
But, I encourage you to leave a thought, reaction, note, etc. when you read!

Thank you and happy reading!

Specialty French Toast: Courtesy of Elizabeth

A few weeks ago, while visiting my cousin Elizabeth and her family, she recommended and made Jelly and Cream Cheese French Toast.  Surprisingly delicious!

Tonight I decided to recreate the scrumptious recipe for Mama, in typical "breakfast for supper" form.

Amidst job applications and a mix of music, vanilla, cloves, and cinnamon are blending to create a lovely scent.


(I apologize for the poor quality of cell phone pictures)

Bread of choice
Cream Cheese (spread on one side)
Jelly of choice (spread on one side)


Dip, cook, and eat with syrup or topping of choice

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Caffrey Date Night

It's Tuesday night!

Do you know what that means?

It means, an attractive art thief, a witty bald guy, and a Suit are back in NYC!

White Collar is on in 45 minutes!

Anyone else LOVE this show?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Accompanied by a Suitcase and Camera

My current emotional and physical state are teetering.
Exhaustion snuck up and pounced on me around 5:00-6:00 PM, this evening.

A tired ending to a wonderful weekend.

I attended a Rafiki conference.  It is a mission program that has villages in ten African countries and helps orphans and children who have no support.  Kae Lacy invited me, and I am so glad I went!

After coming home, I played tennis with Dru (and lost).

Then, I went to Bath Co. and spent two nights with the Shaver's.  It was wonderful.

Driving over the mountain I found a thick fog.

 After passing through the fog I decided to chase the sunset and try to capture a piece of it.

Trey and I jumped on the trampoline for quite a while.  I'd forgotten how fun it was.

On Sunday C.J. and Trey jumped ALL afternoon.  This is what Mrs. Shaver and I came home to.

This morning, after leaving the Shaver's, I visited Ms. Judy.  I love her so much.  High school would have been far more difficult (emotionally) had she not been there.

With a fast stop at the bank, I started over 39.  And got stuck behind a log truck.

Finally making it to CF, I drove to the art school and started helping with the claymation class.  So fun!  The kids are so smart and creative!  The difference between the male and female brain was definitely obvious.

Towards the end of the class a torrential downpour began.

The day ended.  I came home.  And the exhaustion began to overtake me.

However, by the end of this post, I am feeling much better.

I hope you all have wonderful dreams that you can remember.
(last night I dreamed it snowed...and believed it while asleep)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Pink Champagne

I've had a long-time dream.
It began when I was 14 (approx.).

I was watching An Affair to Remember, and Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr discuss and order Pink Champagne.

From that moment I have wanted to try Pink Champagne.

7ish years later, the dream became reality.

Reminscing Salzburg


Last night and this morning I was looking through old pictures and reminiscing memories.
I even found pre-facebook photos (which means, they aren't on FB).

My Austria album came up and I began to reminisce my time in Salzburg.  It is such a beautiful city and rich in culture.  I can't wait to return and spend more time there.

We stayed in a Hostel on top of the cliff looking over the city.  It hosted a breathtaking view of the rooftops with the Alps as a backdrop.

Notice the crisp, blue skies?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Weird Weather

Western Virginia (not to be confused with West Virgina) has been having the oddest weather.
Temperatures in the 90's and higher and lots of storms.
It is not helpful for the electric bill.

Today, while at the Y, I looked out the window and it was raining torrentially. Then, while still pouring sheets of water, the sun came out.

It was beautiful!

My phone died just before I could get the shot I wanted.

But, I did manage to get a shot!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Rules for Employees...A Bookshop's Humor

Remember that fabulous bookstore I told you about?

This humorous little poster is next on the window as you walk to the door:

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

I'll Have My Starbucks and Drink It, Too!

Saturday, before going to Givens Books (read about here), Elizabeth, Michael, Isabelle, Amelie, and I went to the Salem Fair.

I almost didn't go because I had a free birthday drink to take advantage of at Starbucks.  After giving it some thought I decided to make memories with my family instead.

As we walked up to the entrance I realized it was my first time at a fair since Oktoberfest.  Granted, the Salem Fair was MUCH smaller. (I wrote a little bit about Oktoberfest here)

My camera had been used a great deal while visiting my cousins.  In preparation for the fair I made sure I had a spare, charged battery.  Elizabeth gave me the title of personal photo taker...and I LOVED it.

We went specifically so the girls could pet the animals.  They petted lots of animals.  It was so cute watching Isabelle pour food into the little feeding shovels that hung on each fence by the animals and feed the critters.

Later we walked around and played in the mister (a coverless wooden structure with mist coming out to cool people off).

We ended the time by going to Starbucks, so I got my drink after all.

The next day (while I was not with them) Elizabeth and Isabelle rode an elephant!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Piles and Piles of Used Books

Yesterday afternoon, after visiting the Salem Fair, Elizabeth and Michael introduced me to an incredible used bookstore.  Givens Bookstore.

I walked in and was awestruck and the number of books.  Shelves stuffed to the gills and stacks growing from the floors made the aisles like a treasure hunt.

Although the books were listed alphabetically by author, they were mixed around a bit.

I found copies of the Elsie Dinsmore books that were around 100 years old.  I had to fight not to buy them.  They were originally in the Clifton Forge Library. 

Beautiful old copies of Little Men and Jo's Boys begged me to buy them.
I had to refuse.

Amelie (17 mo.) and Isabelle (3) enjoyed running around and looking at books.

Amelie carried this one, finally dropping it on the floor:

Dracula...and later, a home, she picked up Nietsczhe

I specifically looked for the Anne of Green Gable books and found some beautiful copies!  One in particular was given as a Christmas gift in 1920.  The cover is lovely.

I love the cover!

I love notes in books!

Crammed, stuffed, and overflowing!

I only bought one of these. 
Then I found the Anne of Green Gables Books, and bought five.

The Children's Section...My Favorite!

All in all, a fabulous trip to one of the best used bookstores I have ever been privileged to visit.

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