How Many Bloggers Can You Fit In a Phone Booth?

Hello Everyone! I’ve been on the road (or working or volunteering) so much that I’ve not had a moment to tell you about the incredibly brief but amazingly wonderful visit to DC where I was able to see Alys, Boomdee, Lisa, and Julia.
Today I am visiting all of you and I plan to post soon. For now, enjoy this great post from Alys!

Gardening Nirvana

That’s a trick question. Phone booths are largely a thing of the past.  Wouldn’t it be fun to try though?

Instead I did the next best thing. I packed my bags for Washington, D.C., Virginia and New York and met with bloggers everywhere I went.

After an extraordinary 48 hours in Atlanta visiting The Carter Center and the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, I flew to Washington, D.C.

Another airport, another flight delay. No matter. I sustained myself with chocolate and a large bottle of water along with the knowledge that Laurie would be waiting at the airport.

Laurie behind the camera

Laurie is a women’s health practitioner, a biker, an extraordinary photographer and an all around wonderful person. She’s quick with a laugh, sharp and funny. I admire her involvement in her community of Radford, Virginia and all she does to improve the lives of others. If you’re not already…

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It Is About the Destination Sometimes

A visitor to my blog might wonder where the name Life on the Bike came from considering that I haven’t written much about riding lately.  Between the campaign and starting a new business, my 2015 time on the bike was limited.

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2016 will be different! And in fact it already is.

Last weekend, I took at 500 mile ride to Virginia’s capital city of Richmond to have a reunion with friends.  It’s about 250 miles to get there and for efficiency in time, I took the interstate.  Bikers can often be heard to say “it’s the journey, not the destination” and sometimes that is true.  Every now and then though, time is of the essence, and the interstate is the way to go.  I was just glad to be on the bike.  It was a beautiful day and I was a happy woman.

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A quick stop on Afton Mountain, Virginia’s main passage across the Blue Ridge, offered a break for water, a handful of almonds, and a beautiful view.   Meanwhile, my roommates from Old Dominion University were waiting on me, so I was off and riding again in no time.

I met Jan and Angie 38 years ago, and we have maintained contact in one form or another ever since.  Isn’t it amazing how friendships can endure the test of time?

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Soon enough, we were sitting on the porch of this lovely Richmond home, reveling in the fact that even though it had been many years since all three of us had been together, we were completely at home with one another.

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It was a very late night, filled with lots of talk, laughter, and wine and I was glad that we didn’t have to do any driving (or riding).

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While opportunities for photography were limited, this curved brick wall caught my eye.

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The next morning, we enjoyed a delicious, homemade brunch,

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and of course, made time for pictures!

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Back roads carried me home to Radford, and while I didn’t have much time to stop for photography, something about this salt and pepper shaker made me bring out the camera.  You know me!

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So, sometimes it is about the destination, happily so.

Polished

My friend Crystal, over at Conscious Engagement is a woman of many talents.

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She is a hard working, home owning, keeper of chickens, and is also an incredible Mom, a passionate hiker and traveler, and a lover of photography and music.

And even though we’ve never met in the physical sense, I am oh so happy to call her my friend.   When I admired the mailbox that she and Tara had renovated with leftover nail polish, it wasn’t long before my very own unique and colorful mailbox arrived.

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Thanks to my nephew Sam, who installed it yesterday, I now have the best looking box on the street!

Thank you, Crystal! Thank you, Tara!

You can read about their creativity here.

Carrying Me Along

In the same way that this little leaf got carried along by this big leaf during the storms and flooding yesterday, I feel carried by you.

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My WP journey has lasted over 3 years and a big part of my happiness here has been getting to know you through visits to your blogs.  It is truly my intention to spend a lot more time virtually hanging out with you … in 35 days!  I can’t wait!

Thank you for your support and encouragement!

Infinity … at Keswick Hall

Isn’t it incredible how sometimes all we need is 24 hours away from life’s routines and life’s chaos?

We drove through a snow storm to get to Keswick Hall and while there, soaked up the many comforts that we found.  Next time, we’ll make sure to enjoy the heated infinity pool.

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The steam rising off the water added a misty quality to the images,

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whether in color or in monochrome.

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Beautiful scenery in a historic building, incredible food and drink, and a wonderful friendship = 24 hours of fabulous!

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How incredibly lucky am I?

Inside Keswick: The Pampering Continues

When you left us last, Jan and I were enjoying a bottle of champagne and yummy chocolate covered strawberries delivered to our room by the incredibly attentive and caring staff of Keswick Hall.  Restored and refreshed after our snowy ride to the resort, we set out to explore.

When I made the reservations, I did not realize that the Hall was originally a private residence.  “The seventeen-room Villa Crawford, the north wing of Keswick Hall, with it’s original fireplaces, ornate ceiling molding, and grand staircase, was built in 1912”.

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“Designed to resemble an Italian villa, the 8000 sq ft, two-story, stucco clad, slate roofed home originally cost $100,000”.

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We enjoyed a delicious dinner in Fossett’s Restaurant,

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and then wandered down to Treble, the wine cellar named after Thomas Jefferson’s use of the word:

“I have lived temperately….I double the doctor’s recommendation of a glass and a half of wine each day and even treble it with a friend.” – Thomas Jefferson

“The cellar features a glass entrance door framed with handmade wrought-iron gates and lanterns reminiscent of old-world European wine cellars that were kept– like prison cells or bank vaults– under lock and key. Two adjoining rooms offer both informal and more formal dining. You’re also surrounded by 600-700 labels, at least 5,000 bottles in all” (http://www.readthehook.com/89940/stellar-cellar-treble-it-over-keswick)

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Treble is a wine lovers paradise,

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and a photographers challenge.

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Our nightcap in the Villa Crawford Bar, the original family dining room, was happily interrupted by the engagement announcement of one of the employees.  We felt a part of the family and joined in on the celebration.

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The staff of Keswick completely pampered us and their kindness and care added so much to the experience.

How’s this for a view while eating breakfast?  Those of you who checked out Monochromia yesterday may recognize the two chairs off in the distance.

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 Here they are again from another angle.

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The weekend was coming to an end and it was almost time to begin the journey home.  In a couple days, I hope you’ll join me for one final post about Keswick.