Showing posts with label BIRTHDAY 2010. Show all posts
Showing posts with label BIRTHDAY 2010. Show all posts

Monday, September 20, 2010

Shenandoah Valley--Part II

Well Friends, my birthday trip posts are over... Sigh!!!! But---I guess 15 posts from beginning to end is enough though.... For this to only be a four-day trip (three really --plus driving), I guess I have shared enough pictures... But--as you know if you have followed these posts, this was an incredibly wonderful Birthday trip this year that my husband totally planned and surprised me with... If you want to see any of the posts from this trip, just go to my sidebar, to labels, and click on BIRTHDAY 2010.

Today, I will share a few more pictures from our day driving on the back roads through the Shenandoah Valley. Above is just a gorgeous picture of the valley with the mountains in the background. We played "Shenandoah" by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir on our CD player in the car while traveling through the valley... AWESOME!!!! Below are more pictures for you to enjoy.

Wouldn't this be a perfect place to have a farm??? I love seeing the rolling hills in the valley ---and yet, the mountains are close by.. Just PERFECT!!!!

We were totally surprised to see Bike Races on the back roads that day. This picture is not a great one since I took it from inside our car ---but I wanted you to see how many bikers were out there, enjoying the day!!!!

Oh My Heart... This is one house in the Shenandoah Valley which I would have loved to own!!!!! Gorgeous home with trees around it --and a beautiful yard!!!!! Just my idea of awesome!

Here's one more picture of 'our' mountain. Up there somewhere is Skyland Resort --where we stayed the night before.

Here is a close-up of the cute little church in the Shenandoah Valley which so many of you (and I) loved --from last Friday's post. I also love seeing the puffy clouds that day.

Finally, this picture was taken from an overlook on Skyline Drive... I dedicate this post (and the entire trip) to the greatest man in the world, my loving husband, George. "Honey, I adore you.. Thanks for the fabulous trip."

Hope you all had a great weekend. We got some much-needed rain on Thursday, but now (and for the entire week), the temperatures have turned extremely hot again. The hot summer just keeps hanging on.... SO--any of you who are experiencing FALL, please post your beautiful pictures---so that I can DREAM. I'm sure it will eventually get here --but I'm not a very patient person!!!! ha

Have a wonderful Monday.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Shenandoah Valley

You are probably VERY tired of hearing me talk about my August Birthday trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive. This will only be my 14th post from this trip... Yipes!!!! BUT--the good news is that there is only one more post after today...

It was a fabulous trip--and if you are new to my blog, I hope that you will go to my sidebar, scroll down to labels and click on Birthday 2010.

In today's post, we are finally OFF of the mountain (came off of the Skyline Drive near Front Royal, VA) ---and are driving through the fabulous Shenandoah Valley. In the above picture, you can see the beautiful valley ---with the mountains (which we had just been on) in the distance. Below are more pictures of the 'valley'.

In this picture, you can see Skyline Drive (where we were) on the mountain. It felt strange being in the valley--after being on the mountain for two days.

Like we always do, we drove on all of the 'back roads' in the valley--so that we could enjoy seeing the farms and communities along our way. This is a little church (Limeton Community Church) which we saw. I didn't realize until after I took the picture that there was a power line in the picture... Oh Well--it's still a pretty, little church.

The Shenandoah River wanders in an "S" shape throughout the valley in this area. Since I wanted a picture of the river, I tried to take one from the car --while we were driving That didn't work--as you can see. But---out of all of the pictures we took that day, this is the ONLY one we have showing the river.... SO---Close your eyes and just think of this picture as an 'artsy' one!!!! ha

All of my life, I have heard about the beautiful Shenandoah Valley... The Mormon Tabernacle Choir's version of "Shenandoah" has always been a favorite of mine. Dotted throughout this valley were many gorgeous homes and ranches and farms. This is one I'd love to see up close!!!

This is one of my favorite pictures of the valley because most of you know how much I love seeing little country churches. The location of this one is fabulous I think...

AND--the highest mountain in the background just happens to be near where we had spent the night the night before, Skyland Resort... It was fun looking up and comparing how different things look being down in the valley instead of looking at the view from above.

IF you ever get a chance to visit this area, please do so. I'm sure it is fabulous in the Fall--but like the Smokies, the traffic will be much worse then.

Have a wonderful weekend. I'll be back on Monday morning.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Skyland Resort, Shenandoah National Park, VA

After this post, there are only 2 more sets to publish of my Birthday trip to the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive areas in Virginia from August 5-8. To see any of the other blog posts from this great trip, go to my sidebar, scroll down to labels, and click on Birthday 2010. Believe it or not, there are 12 posts already published in that set, not counting this one.

Today, I'm sharing with you a little more about the place where we spent the night on August 6, Skyland Resort. Skyland is off of the Skyline Drive near Milepost 42. To see the first set of pictures we took from here, click HERE. Above is a picture of the office --where George checked us in that afternoon. Below are more!!!

I want to go inside this building again... This is where we bought our Shenandoah National Park t-shirts, AND is where we ate dinner that evening. Remember the Blackberry Ice Cream Pie I mentioned before????? YUMMMMMM!!!!

Here is the amphitheater at Skyland Resort. They offer all kinds of interesting and historical programs at this little theater.

This is the back side of the restored 1911 cabin, which is called the Massanutten Lodge. In this building, you can read some great history of the resort. The Skyland Resort, much older than the park, played a role in its establishment. It was developed by George Freeman Pollock, a colorful character who induced a group of well-to-do city people to build vacation homes in this area, which is now part of the park. Pollock joined with a group of others who actively promoted the establishment of a national park in the southern Appalachian highlands. This lodge was one of the original buildings.

I love seeing how they used rock to build the homes back then. The Skyland Resort became the core of the new Shenandoah National Park after the National Park Service awarded the concession contract to the Sky-Line Company, Inc. in 1937. They then began to build new facilities. Twelve Skyland structures remain and allow modern visitors to experience life at the turn of the 20th century.

This is one of my favorite spots at Skyland Resort. This is the patio outside of their restaurant. The view is great --and being able to eat dinner either inside the restaurant or on the patio is great as you watch the sun go down in the west.

We loved this resort and recommend it to YOU if you ever go to that area. This is where we also saw deer wandering freely with no fear of all of the people around.

Anyone having Blogger problem like I am???? Yesterday morning, I kept getting the message, "Service Unavailable"..... I lost lots of comments ---or didn't know whether they were published ---or because I did them OVER, maybe they published several times. I finally gave up!!! Grrrrrrrrrrr.... (Last night, things seemed to be better though, thank goodness!!)

Have a wonderful weekend. We drove to the Smokies again yesterday, and of course took MORE pictures.... Fun Fun!!!!!

See you Monday morning!!!!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Eye Candy from Virginia

When we took our trip through the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive in Virginia in August, we not only saw gorgeous mountain and valley views. We also saw other pretty things. Today I'll share with you some of those beauties..

The first four pictures were taken along the Blue Ridge Parkway and the last two were along Skyline Drive. Above is a picture of some apple trees loaded with little apples. I know that Virginia is known for its apples. A friend told me about a fabulous apple found near Bedford called Black Twig... Anyone heard of this one??? It apparently can only be found in that area... We didn't get there to find it---but it sounds delicious!

Talk about 'eye candy'.... We saw so many gorgeous wildflowers along the parkway. Aren't they pretty?

These are almost past their prime --but I thought they were still pretty.

These yellow ones really stood out!!! They looked a little like Black-Eyed Susans --without a black eye!!!! ha

Those bees were really enjoying the Thistle!

And--who couldn't take a trip like we did without seeing some gorgeous butterflies!!!!

Hope you enjoyed seeing a little 'eye candy' today!!!! I'll bet the Fall colors along the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Skyline Drive will provide some beautiful colors also in about a month or so.

Since I'm such a 'weather girl' and have complained about us not getting any rain lately, I just need to announce that we got .4 of an inch of rain early yesterday morning. That's not much--but anything we get is helpful now!!!!! Thanks to any of you who did a nice rain dance for us!!!! Keep dancin'!!!!

Have a terrific Thursday.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Are They Triplets?????

On my birthday trip (August 5-8), we enjoyed traveling along the Blue Ridge Parkway, and then on the Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. While on the Skyline Drive, we had two encounters with Black Bears. Before you panic, let me say that we were never close --and were never threatened at all by them. SO---today, I'm sharing some pictures of these interesting critters.

Above is a picture of a Mama Bear and her THREE babies.... Aren't those little cubs just adorable???? Below are more!!!!

We were driving along the parkway south of Big Meadows at about Milepost 53---when we saw a Mama Bear trying to get across the road.

Now---we could see TWO of the little ones... While watching them, George heard some crying and squeaking out of his window (we were in the car). Here came the third baby across the road looking for its mother. He passed right in front of our car and hid down in the brush... Of course, I missed his picture when he was so close.... Darn!!!!! BUT--the next picture will show you that I did finally get him ---as he 'brought up the rear' --as the little family crossed the road.

That little cub was hollering: "Wait for me!" Isn't he just adorable???? I didn't crop this picture (like I did the other three above) so that I could show you where we were. We were the third car in line ---and I was taking pictures through the front window. That is why these first four pictures are a little blurry. BUT--I'm just glad we saw them PERIOD.... I've NEVER seen three Bear Cubs together before... Have you?????

This young bear was seen by us before we saw the pictures above. We were at Milepost 92 near the Moorman River Overlook. We got out of the car to see what we could see---and low and behold, this bear was enjoying eating in the area below our overlook. He paid no attention to us ---and just continued to eat.

George quickly put the long lens on his camera to catch a close-up of this bear as he scurried on down the hill. I think he was alone ---or at least, we didn't see any other bears in that area.

Since most of us enjoy seeing the wildlife when we are out in nature, I would be amiss if I didn't say that we ALL need to be VERY careful. We do NOT ever need to get close or feed or upset any of our wildlife. We are GUESTS in their habitat.

Hope you enjoyed seeing our "Bear-Encounters"...


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Skyline Drive (Virginia)--Part II

If you missed Part I of my post showing Skyline Drive, Click HERE. Today I will share with you some more pictures from the overlooks along the Skyline Drive. We pulled out the tripod at Milepost 20 to get some pictures of the two of us. Pignut Mountain is in the distance behind us.

Have you ever heard of "The Trail of the Lonesome Pine"? This was a book written by John Fox Jr. --who was from my hometown of Big Stone Gap, Virginia. The novel was made into several screen and stage plays through the years. Anyhow--this little lone pine reminded me of that!!!!! This picture was taken near the Pinnacles area (3350 feet) at milepost 36.7.

I took this picture to show you one of the other overlooks along the Skyline Drive. This picture was taken at milepost 17.1 which is the Range View Overlook (2810 feet).

For some reason, both George and I took pictures of some of the dead trees along the way. They just stood out as if they were the KING of the Skyline!!! I'm not sure this one is dead --but there wasn't a leaf on it!!!!! Neat picture, huh, with that blue sky and puffy clouds behind it???? This picture was taken at milepost 13 and the overlook is the Hogwallow Flats Overlook (2665 feet).

There are two things I like about this picture... One is the big rocks just below the overlook, and the other is all of the shadows from the clouds in the sky. This picture was also taken from the Range View Overlook (2810 feet) at milepost 17.1

This is a view of the Shenandoah River and Shenandoah Valley. There is one overlook where all 11 bends of this beautiful river are visible --but it has to be on a very clear day (and it was too hazy when we were there). To see all 11 bends, go to the Hogback Overlook located at milepost 21. This particular picture was taken at the Gooney Run Overlook (2085 feet) at milepost 6.8. Dickey Ridge is to the right.


I'll close by bringing you back to our yard in beautiful Fairfield Glade, Tennessee. This is our Confederate Jasmine bush in our front yard. The butterflies love it. I took this picture on August 20. This particular butterfly was a little tattered --but pretty nevertheless.

One more thing: In yesterday's blog, I asked you to guess which woodpecker Woody Woodpecker is patterned after... It is the Red-headed Woodpecker.

Have a great day!!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Skyline Drive (Virginia)

As most of you know , George took me on a surprise trip for my birthday (August 5). If you have missed any of the other posts, click
HERE to see any or all of the other 8 posts (plus this one) from this trip. There is also a map of the Skyline Drive on THIS POST if you'd like to see it.

Today's post may be a little boring to those who don't enjoy seeing mountains... We stopped at almost every overlook and took pictures... Luckily, our Geotracker helped us to keep up with where we were --so that when we got home, it was easier to get information on the pictures we took. (If you travel alot and take pictures frequently, the Geotracker is a wonderful device to have!)

Here are today's pictures beginning above with a picture taken at the Sawmill Run Overlook (2195 feet) near Milepost 95.. Below are more.

This was taken at an overlook where you can see the Moormans River in the distance. This is about Milepost 92, and we were at 2975 feet.

I love the coloring in this picture. This one was taken at the Rocky Top Overlook--2860 feet -- (Milepost 78.2). Of course, that name (Rocky Top) made me start singing my favorite Tennessee Volunteer song... ha... But the tops of the mountains here do look rocky, don't they????

This beauty was taken at the Brown Mountain Overlook near Milepost 77. We were at 2840 feet here.

This is appropriately called Big Meadows. We are near Milepost 51, and we are at 3535 feet. Big Meadows is also a recreation area (like Skyland where we stayed --which is north of here). There is camping, picnicing, hiking, a lodge, etc. here.

I read somewhere that you can see wildlife in this meadow at certain times of the day. BUT--we were running late trying to get to Skyland Resort --so that "I" wouldn't miss DINNER... ha ha

I'll close this section with a picture of us --taken by a nice couple, the next day (Aug 7) after we had left Skyland Resort. This picture was taken looking toward Mt. Marshall and the Peaks. We were at 3368 feet here, and were at Milepost 15. (All of the pictures before this one were taken on Aug. 6 BEFORE we got to Skyland Resort.)

This is Double Delight, one of our hybrid tea rose bushes in our yard... Believe it or not, all of these blooms are from the same bush.. Double Delight is one of George's and my favorite roses... It starts out white with pink edges (note the bud toward the middle) --and gets pinker and pinker as it matures... AND--it smells heavenly!!!!

Hope you had a good weekend... We didn't get any rain (sigh)---but it is cooler here and less humid. SO--we opened up the house today, turned off the AC --and are enjoying the outside air and the birds singing. I despise AC --except when it's unbearably hot---so this is JOYFUL to me.

Today is George's and my 110th MONTH-aversary. Since we've only been married since 2001, we have to celebrate every chance we get... We'll go out to dinner tonight I HOPE.... ha

Have a wonderful Monday.