Friday, August 27, 2010

On My Honor . . .

Congratulation to Alan Rice for earning Eagle Scout rank. I am always inspired by young people who dream a big dream, set the goal, and persevere until they achieve it. Click here to see the slideshow

Farmer's Market Series

Click to Mix and Solve

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

Farmer's Market Series

T'is the season! Maybe I am inspired because I made supper tonight using squash, tomatoes, and peppers from my modest garden. Or, maybe I just found a random folder on my desktop with all these images taken at the farmer's market in Quepos, Costa Rica last summer. Whatever, the end result is I have a rainbow of fresh fruit and vegetable puzzles to entertain you for the next two weeks.
Click to Mix and Solve

Friday, August 06, 2010


I spent yesterday in Winston with Amber and her future mother in law, Vickie, making wedding arrangements. While visiting the lovely chapel at Tanglewood Park, the front-runner choice of venues, Amber had the delightful idea to incorporate a Moravian Love Feast into the ceremony. About midnight last night, I sat down to do some research into it. At the very moment that I typed the words, "Moravian Love Feast," into the search bar, fireworks started esploding and sparks began shooting out of the electric meter (a mere four feet away from my left ear!) Thankfully, we experienced the protection of God (and a speedy response from AEP) that saved our house and lives, although that might have been an easy escape from the burden of my out of control, disorderly house-keeping!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

"I Do!" at the Villa Appalaccia

First things first. No, I am not dead! I have actually trekked from the west coast back to the east coast this summer, and if I ever get caught up, the world will get to see proof of that trip right here. I have also discovered that it is much easier and faster to upload pictures and notes to facebook which has led to flagrant blogger neglect.

Tomorrow is the commencement of McPherson Beach Week, and I've gotta get packin', so this is a quick post to share Carolyn and Phillip's sweet wedding at the Villa Appalaccia last weekend.
Carolyn and Phillip.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pirates of the Golden Bell

Pirates of the Caribbean performed at First Presbyterian Church, Marietta GA by the JoyBell Ringers during our Sweet Water Tour. Awesome narration given by Susan Gleason of two poems, "Davy Jones' Doorbell" by Vaschel Lindsay and "Pirates" by Lee Templar.

Click here to view this video

JoyBell Ringers play Ballade

I absolutely LOVE this piece! It's one of my all time favorites. This performance is from our Sweet Water Tour kick-off concert at First Baptist in Galax.

Click here to view this video

The Sweet Water Tour Rewind

The JoyBell Ringers' Sweet Water Tour was PRACTICALLY PERFECT in every way! The weather was perfect every single day! Nobody got sick or hurt. None of the vehicles got sick or hurt. and Miss Charlotte didn't get sick or hurt, which really is miraculous considering I started the trip on only two hours of sleep! We travelled 5 days and rang 7 times ranging from just 3 selections to our entire concert program of 16 pieces at a consistently high level of performance.

Here is a recap of the trip:

(There are a ton of pictures (that I didn't take) and some videos of pieces we played at this website: The JoyBell Rigners website
And here is a link to a news article about our performance at St. Barnabas in Chattanooga: )

We played for an hour at the Southwest Virginia Mental Health Institute in Marion Va. They provided a nice box lunch for us that we ate in the park on their beautiful grounds. We then drove to Sevierville, Tn where we played a half hour program between their Wed. evening meal and activities. Oh, and they fed us yummy, homemade chicken and dumplings! We drove on to Chattanooga and spent the night at a hotel that we booked for their indoor pool, but the pool was closed. And that was the ONLY thing that went wrong the whole trip!

We played for about an hour in the morning at the St. Barnabas skilled nursing and rehab center in downtown Chattanooga. I didn't get this set up until just Monday of that week!!! We had two other venues cancel on us for that day. This was a lovely place and they were so delighted and enthusiastic to have us play for them. We had two big pans of spaghetti left over from our fundraiser dinner that we took with us on the trip, and they heated it up for us in their oven while we played and served us our lunch in their pretty little park, where I got to see my first azaleas blooming this year! After our lunch, we embarked on the "mystery tour." First we took a tour of the Chattanooga waterfront aboard a WWII amphibious "Duck" vehicle. The kids absolutely loved it! Our tour guide regaled them with non-stop stories of Civil War battles and the renaissance of the waterfront area. He even let all of them that wanted to, drive the duck in the river! After the tour, they had about an hour to explore the visitor center and aquarium plaza, then it was off to the IMAX theater to see a movie about the Hubble telescope in 3D, which was AWESOME! We ate barbeque at Sticky Fingers, walked all around the waterfront and across the Walnut Street Bridge which is the third longest pedestrian bridge in the world. After a stop at Coldstone Creamery, we hit the road and spent the night in Kennesaw, GA at a very nice, new Comfort Suites, whose pool was open.

Friday was dedicated to visiting the world's largest aquarium in Atlanta GA, where I got to fulfill a dream that has been on my bucket list for at least 40 years: I got to actually swim with the fish!!! Yes, I went SCUBA diving in the Ocean tank! 6.3 million gallons of water. It is literally the size of a football field and 30 feet deep! Over 80 species from all around the world in one tank. I was flipping out excited, and it so much fun to do that while all my kids were there to cheer me on. We rang Capriccio together while I was in the tank. Then, as my guests at the aquarium that day, all 18 of them got to take the "Behind the Scenes" tour of the inner workings of the aquarium while I was finishing up my dive. That tour is normally a $50 add on to the price of admission!!! Can we say, That was a GOD moment?!?! After the aquarium, we had dinner at The Varsity, the world's largest drive in restaurant, and a famous Atlanta institution. I was told that this was an experience not to be missed. The kids loved it, but I beg to differ after standing in the very crowded, noisy, long line twice to get our order filled. We drove back out to Marietta to spend the night at First Presbyterian Church. The kids stayed up watching Star Trek, and I went to bed.

We started off with a concert at the Presbyterian Village retirement community in Austell, GA. One lady came up to me afterwards with tears filling her eyes and said, "I am 87 years old, and I have NEVER heard anything so beautiful in all my life!!" Imagine that! a "Bell Virgin" at 87! That alone would have been worth the whole trip. We picked up lunch afterwards and headed to the Kennesaw Mountain National Civil War Battlefield Park for a picnic, and for me, a relaxing, QUIET walk in the woods, before we had to get back and prepare for our evening concert They served us a great lasagna dinner, and we played our full length program for them in their historic 1855 sanctuary. This was an incredible, vibrant space to play in! Afterwards, they fed us again with a lavish reception.

We had another royal meal (breakfast) provided by First Pres. and then we played 3 pieces at the 8:30 service, and 5 pieces in the 9:45 service. One of them was Grazioso, that we performed with their adult handbell choir . . . without having any rehearsal together! I snuck out of the 8:30 service to practice it with their folks, and then we just hit it! We loaded up the bells one last time, and hit the road. We stopped for lunch at a little city park just north of Atlanta, and then we stopped a lot more times, and then we stopped for dinner at a Mexican restaurant in Mooresville, and then we stopped some more, and we finally got home about 10:30 that night: a 6 hour trip that took only 11 hours! And that, my friends, concludes the Sweet Water Tour!


My baby bells are the cutest thing ever! Here they are practicing and playing at our concert last week.

Click here to view this video

Sunday, March 28, 2010

JoyBell Ringers

My fav kids in the whole wide world!!! And I get to spend 5 days with them next month traveling and ringing throughout the south.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Sweet, Smart, and 21

In other news this month, Sammy turned 21 and we celebrated in glitzy, glamourous fashion at the Rex.
See the slideshow here.

We hope these days are Gone!!

I took these shots about a month ago. Good riddance, winter!!

Dylan, the trees are just for you!


My son, Amos, is learning how to be a hometown hero, AKA firefighter. He always has had a magnetic attraction for anything pyro, so this is a natural. His lovely wife, Cara, posted these pictures of the Monterey Fire Academy's first "flag burn" exercise (whatever that means) to facebook. Since I own bragging rights on the brave, handsome lad, I snagged them for you to see here, especially, you, Jimmy.

That's Amos, standing in front of the platoon.

Our local hometown heroes were in action last Friday morning, saving our town. I didn't know about the fire until it was already out, but the fireman were still on the job when I got there. You can see those photos on Facebook or Here.

Friday, February 05, 2010


These are all trees I have communed with and virtually hugged in the last two months. I will let them speak for themselves.

Amber's Trees

Stuart's trees

Leipzig Trees

Schmalkalden Tree
Big Sur Trees

Monterey Trees
Big Sur Hippy Story Tree House
Carol's Tree

The Blueberry Patch trees
Me. Looking like a tree.
Actually, not a tree, but makes me think of a tree.
Tampa tree at sunrise
New River trees surrounded by icebergs.
My trees.