A Little Blue

Alys asked if we are feeling Red, White, or Blue today and my response: I can’t help but feel a little blue.  Because of that, I decided to focus on being thankful to those working on this day of celebrating America’s Independence.

My route on the bicycle this morning took me past dozens of people working to set up Radford’s Spirit of America celebration, and past dozens more enjoying our beautiful bikeway / walkway.  It struck me that that, while many of us are off today, there are so many who are working, whether in their paid jobs or in volunteer service.  Thanks to all of them for making the community better.

Please visit Gardening Nirvana and read Alys’s thoughts on July 4th.

I’m off on the motorized bike for a bit.  Then I plan to come home and catch up with all of you!

 

Memorial Day 2017

Born out of the Civil War, Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service to the United States of America.

Many in America confuse Memorial Day with Veterans Day or think of it as a 3 day holiday weekend.  It is not a time to say “Happy Memorial Day”, rather it is a time of solemn remembrance of those who died in service to the country.

The City of Radford hosts a Memorial Day Service each year, and I am proud to serve on the organizing committee.  The program includes short speeches from local dignitaries, music from the High School band and choir, and participation by members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, and the Vietnam Veterans.  Hundreds of people attend the service each year, and this year was our 19th annual service.

I wasn’t able to take many photos but thankfully we had great print and TV media coverage.  The program ends with a 21 gun salute, a bagpiper plays Amazing Grace, and a trumpeter plays Taps. For a small town program run entirely by volunteers, it really is quite powerful.

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Please follow this link to read a bit about this year’s program.  Mike Gangloff describes the day much better than I.  He quotes one of our speakers as saying that Memorial Day isn’t “about sales and cookouts and the opening of swimming pools, but the sacrifice of soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen. They gave us all their tomorrows so we could enjoy ours.”

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I feel so honored to work with these veterans each year, and even convinced them to take a group “selfie” with me.

Holiday in Atlanta

As I sit here on New Years Eve, enjoying a wee dram (or two) of single malt whiskey and writing this blog post, I think how differently I now spend the final hours of the year. Between the fullness of life and an overly packed schedule, it is a joy to spend a quieter evening at home, catching up, relaxing, and oh yes, watching college football.  Whereas I used to stay up until midnight, I am now content to meet with friends on New Years Day.

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The past three years have found me recovering from a motorcycle wreck, running for state delegate, starting a new business, and just two months ago, starting another.  Even my time on WP the past few months has been limited.  No wonder I’m content to be still.

Many people will ponder 2016, and put into beautiful words what the year has meant.  Others will plan for the coming year and all that they hope to accomplish.  Me?  I’m about a week behind and am still glowing after a wonderful 48 hour trip to Atlanta to see my son and his family.

We enjoyed an incredible tapas style Christmas Eve meal at the Iberian Pig. Oh my goodness, the food and drinks were incredible!  This was our effort to take a selfie afterwards.

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I awoke the next morning to this lovely site.  What is it about a lighted tree that brings such a sense of peace?

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We spent the day opening gifts, enjoying our traditional breakfast souffle and Bloody Marys, and playing games.  My granddogs, Wilson and Tela, were never far from the action, or the food.

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Oh my gosh, I love these dogs!

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 The cheese plate was almost to pretty to eat.

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Another family tradition is the Cracker, and I was glad to have it continue in Atlanta.

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What a joyful visit!

On a personal level this coming year, I’d like to think that I will make an effort to volunteer a little less (doubtful) and exercise a little more (probable).  I also hope to spend more time with family and friends, and of course with my camera, and riding the bike.

What I definitely know is that I will do all that I can to join the resistance against bigotry, misogyny, racism, and hatred.

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Despite the fact that national and international politics have me entering 2017 with caution, I do know that there is much good in this world and I believe that goodness WILL prevail.

Welcome to 2017!  Thank you for the light you bring to my life, and for your friendships.

Finding Merry

To my WP friends the world over, those who celebrate and those who do not, know that you have enriched my life. May the blessings of health, contentment, and peace be yours.

Santa Stops Here

After spending most of the weekend happily knocking multiple items off the to do list, it was so nice to receive an invite to a wine tasting.

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We only had an hour, but sometimes that is all that is needed for a respite from work.

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There was time to laugh with a dear friend,

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and with the women who were conducting the tasting.

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As an added bonus, I got to a little shooting.

Despite my rusty trigger finger, it felt good to play with the camera.

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Perhaps I’ll stop back by to do a little shopping.

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All in all, it was a lovely way to spend an hour,

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and it’s beginning to feel like the holidays.

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Tis the Season

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At our women driven fundraiser, with 100% of the monies raised going to local organizations, we served this yummy Divatini.  The non-alcoholic version was just as delicious – or so I am told 🙂

I haven’t had much time for photography and with temps in the 20s today, I wasn’t able to get the bike out of the shop.  The good news is that I have had the day to catch up on so many things, none of which were holiday related.  Maybe next weekend!

Now I’m off to see what you all have been up to.