Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. Also welcome to APRIL!!!! Spring is AWESOME. Enjoy some beautiful TULIPS from Biltmore!!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

A Little/Lot of Everything

Well---to say that this 'Snow-Loving-Gal' is happy is an understatement... I loved finally seeing a nice snowfall here. However (you know this is coming), we not only had 5-6 inches of snow; we also had sleet AND about an inch of ICE... That was the part I don't like!

Our snow started out about noon on Friday. It was so pretty --and before dark (as you know from my last blog post), we had about 2+ inches. After dark, it snowed and snowed --giving us about 5 inches. BUT--in the late evening, when the temperature was only about 27 degrees, what did it do????? It RAINED.... We had FREEZING RAIN--which added up to another inch of something. GADS!!!

When we got up yesterday morning, It was pretty outside --but there was ice and icicles all over the place (even hanging from the bird feeders). I walked outside to replenish the feeders --and was shocked to find that the ice was so thick that my feet didn't even sink into the snow AT ALL. I have never experienced anything like this. (Usually the ice comes first and then the snow, but ours was the opposite.)

This was not the type of 'snow' to walk in, nor to make a snowman, nor even to make a snow angel... I couldn't even make any snow cream! SO---what did I do?? I just went outside long enough to take pictures, and then stayed inside the rest of the day. It snowed some more yesterday afternoon--and I love watching it snow.

The snow plow in our sub-division finally came by our street a couple of times --but there were NO cars out at all today. We didn't even have any mail service. There was just too much ice. I am glad though that we did NOT lose our electricity --because I'm sure that some people did. We did lose our DirecTV Satellite reception due to ice on the dish ---but that is okay for now. Our temperatures will moderate on Monday (I hope) ---but last night's lows were in the single digits. Brrrrrrr....

Between the two of us, George and I both took lots of pictures. It's hard to know where to begin---so it may take several blog posts to show them all to you... Today though, I'll take you for a walk around our home --on a very cold Saturday afternoon. Above is a picture of the front of our house which I took--from the street. Below are more.

I was standing in the middle of the road---looking up the street.

A close-up of some of our many trees; Enlarge this one so that you can see all of the ICE!!

Looking down the street (Can you tell that we live on a fairly steep hill?)

Enlarge this one and see all of the ICE on our Confederate Jasmine Bush.

This picture was taken on the 'upper' side of our house looking toward the deck and the backyard. See all of the snow in our side flowerbed.... NOTE: We may have had more than 5-6 inches... It just depended upon where you looked before and after the drifts!!!

I took this picture from our backyard --looking toward the deck. You can see the bird feeder area --which stayed extremely BUSY all day long. You can also see the icicles hanging all along the house (gutters) ----AND, you can see the satellite dish (which is FROZEN)...

We walked out onto the golf course fairway and saw some deer tracks. George took this picture of the back of our home from the fairway. See that 'snow girl' all bundled up????? ha ha.... Note also that we left no footprints since we didn't sink into the snow!!!! Weird, huh????

Finally, we walked down on the lower side of the back yard (next to the woodpile). George stands beside a big pine tree ---which was dragging the ground due to the heavy ICE.

Well---how did you like the grand tour in the snow?? Aren't you sorry you weren't here to walk the yard on such a cold, icy day??????

I hope that you have a wonderful Sunday!!!! I am hoping now for warmer weather so that George won't have to get up on the roof with a hair dryer to melt the ice on the satellite dish, or to even spray it with window washer stuff.... We may just have to wait until it melts all by itself!!!!


Saturday, January 30, 2010

A New Birdie at my Feeder

Two interesting things happened at our home yesterday. First, we finally got some SNOW. The forecasters were right this time... We had about 2 inches when it got dark--and it snowed most of the night... Most of you know how much I LOVE snow --and when we get some here in Fairfield Glade, well---let's just say that I am a 'Happy Camper'!!!!

Secondly, I had a bird come to the feeders yesterday who NEVER has come before. This common bird is a ROBIN. We always have Robins around our yard --and they are ground feeders. BUT--since it has snowed hard, the ground was totally covered. What does a ground-feeder birdie do??????

Well this Robin decided that he would check out my bird feeders. First he came to the deck --and finally he flew up to the Suet feeder. He sat there on the clothes line for a long time before checking out the Suet feeder. Once he ate some of that feeder, he must have loved it. He sat there for a long time eating and SITTING.... Seeing a Robin at the Suet feeder is definitely a FIRST for me. Have you seen one do this before????

Here are some pictures for you... Mr. Robin is above---when he first checked out the deck as the snow first started sticking!!! Below are more pictures.

"Hello, My name is King of the Robins. I am royalty!!! In fact, I am on my way to the Coronation. Don't you love my beautiful feathers???" (Is this not a fabulous picture of the Robin??? Of course, I used my NEW camera!!!)

Mr Robin decided not to go to the Coronation right now... Hunger took over!!!! He hopped up on the clothes line near the Suet feeders... He sat there for awhile before having some din-din. Isn't he pretty?

Next step for Mr. Robin: He now has moved from the clothes line to the Suet feeder... He needs to knock all of the snow off of the suet!!!

"Okay..... I'm going to try this delicious suet!" (The Robin ate and ate and ate ---and then stayed at the Suet feeder for at least 30 minutes!)

I guess even Robins do what they have to do in order to find something to eat in bad weather!!! Many, many birds were at the feeders yesterday --like they always are when it snows or rains. I took about 100 pictures --using the new camera!!!! I'm learning!!!!


This picture was taken yesterday afternoon --when we only had about 2 inches of snow on the ground. This is the new Flowerbed Wall... (This little wall has been featured alot lately!!!! ha..) Anyhow--I liked seeing the snow as it collected on each block on the wall, and also on the round Lamppost flowerbed....

This picture was taken from our deck ---looking up the hill in our neighbor's backyard.

And one more picture----the lower side of our backyard where the woodpile is; Hopefully, I will be able to show you many more 'snow' pictures in upcoming blogs --since some reports say that we may get up to nine inches!!!! That is extremely RARE for this area. I don't care how much we get---because I just LOVE it-- whatever it is!!!!!


Friday, January 29, 2010

Jamestown Settlement --Part II

If you missed yesterday's blog, be sure and read it first. Today's blog is a continuation of our anniversary trip to Jamestown Settlement (in June of 2007). Above is a picture of me checking out the gardens. I was fascinated at seeing the pole beans wrapped around the corn stalks. Below are more.

Of course, George loved seeing and checking out the cannon.

I just had to stir the pot... Want some dinner????? Yum!

We watched this Colonist fire his musket... (Hold your ears!!!!)

In the Indian village, I checked out the 'skins'... There were raccoon skins and bear skins. I also saw a wolf skin... Glad he wasn't alive!!!!

We watched the demonstration of the firing of a cannon. (Again---hold your ears!!!!)

Hope these pictures make you want to visit Jamestown Settlement. This was only one small piece of Jamestown. We also visited Old Jamestown and also drove around the island. I'll post more Jamestown pictures at another time.


There are two things very interesting about the above picture of the moon. I took the picture last night from our deck --through the trees... Here's what is interesting about this picture:
1 . You'd never believe it by looking at that moon, but there is a big, bad STORM coming!!! I am hoping for SNOW and not ICE..... Yipes!!!
2. This picture was taken with my brand new camera!!!! I'll share that info with you in another post!!!


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Jamestown Settlement --Part I

I posted a recent blog (Click HERE) on the three ships in Jamestown Settlement. Today and tomorrow I will share more from our trip to Jamestown Settlement for our anniversary in June of 2007. Jamestown Settlement is a living-history museum of 17th century Virginia. The picture above is at the Powhatan Indian Village. Below are more pictures.

I was fascinated with the canoes which were made out of tree trunks.

I decided to grind some corn. Want some????

Here was a shipwright at work. Very interesting!

George watched the blacksmith at work.

Here the basket-weaver is busy.

If you have children/grandchildren, Jamestown Settlement is a great place to take them. I'll post six more pictures tomorrow.


P.S. We had a nice visit with George's parents in Hendersonville yesterday. Both are doing quite well--considering their ages. Dad was very happy that his Vanderbilt team beat my Vols team in basketball last night!!! Oh Well---my team would do anything to make DAD happy I guess!!! ha

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

All Fixed!!

If you saw my blog a few days ago, you know that our recent flood washed out part of our new wall... BUT---thanks to my HERO (my hubby), this Flowerbed Wall out front is all fixed (well, almost)... He started at the bottom and found some big flat rocks to fill in where the dirt had washed out under the wall in that one area. Then he realized that he had to take down the top part of the wall in order to get it all back in properly and evenly.... Above is a picture of the new WALL --right after it was completed, in September, 2009. Below are more pictures taken on a cold, snowy day in Fairfield Glade yesterday!!!!

George is working on the bottom part--to make the wall sturdy, AND he is taking off the blocks from the top--to fit them back in properly.

It's all taken apart now!!!! Hope the wind doesn't blow too hard today---or the entire wall could come down!!!!!! Yipes!

There it is----all ready to rebuild!!!!!

Well---Lookie there!!!! He did it!!!! The wall is FIXED!!! IF you look carefully at this picture (you may have to enlarge it more), you can see some white streaks.. Those are the snow flurries we had coming down ALL day!

Except for the shovel sitting there and a few rocks, the Flowerbed Wall is finished. HOWEVER, alot of dirt washed out all along the side of the entire wall--so George is going to work on that soon, by rocking and concreting all along the bottom. AND--he'll move the water flow farther away from the wall... Hopefully, we won't have THAT much water coming down the hill for a long time. BUT--if so, we'll be ready.

Isn't it amazing the difference in this picture (taken today-during Winter) and the first picture at the top (taken in late Summer)?????? WOW---looks like a different place entirely!! As much as I enjoy Winter, it is not a pretty time of year here!

Here's one last picture for you today... While George was out front working on the wall, I was busy taking pictures. When I went back inside, some of our Bluebirds were busy on the deck having some lunch. Here are three of them.. Two are enjoy suet and the other one is on the plate above-- very patiently waiting for a turn!!!! (That little thing on the top left is a seed bell covered with peanut butter.)

Hope you have a wonderful day. We are headed to Hendersonville today (instead of Friday) to check on George's parents. Our weather is supposed to get 'rough' (rain/ice/snow) on Thursday and Friday--so we will make this trip today!!!!


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Falls on Log Hollow Branch, near Brevard, NC

From December 10-12, 2009, George and I were in the Brevard, NC area doing some hiking and searching for new waterfalls. It was a cold, icy trip ---but PERFECT for hiking and 'waterfalling'. During the three days we were gone, we saw a total of 23 waterfalls --with 16 of them being new ones for us. We have now seen over 400 different waterfalls since 2001.

Recently I showed you pictures from Looking Glass Falls and from Slick Rock Falls. Today, I am sharing three more waterfalls, all on Log Hollow Branch. From Highway 276, we headed up in the mountains on an unpaved forest road. We parked and hiked about two miles to see these three waterfalls. Above is a picture of us (taken with a tripod) at the middle one of the three, Log Hollow Falls. Below are more pictures of that hike.

See that trail??????? I don't either!!! BUT---that is what 'bushwhacking' is all about. We knew that somewhere UP that hill (there was no trail), there was a waterfall. SO--we took off up the mountain!!!! Below is what we found.

This waterfall is called the Waterfall on the Northern Tributary of Log Hollow Branch. I will call it NORTHERN LOG HOLLOW FALLS. Isn't it pretty???? It is 50 feet in height. Do you think this hike in the woods was worth our effort??? Yes it was.. Our elevation here was 3,480 feet.

Here's the top of Northern Log Hollow Falls showing the icicles. For those of you who question our bush-whacking, I will assure you that we are very careful. We have a hiking GPS and we always mark our car --so that if we happen to lose our way on a non-trail, we can find our way back to the car using the GPS.

We got back down to the trail and we headed on to the 2nd waterfall. This one (along with the 3rd one) was right off of the main trail. This one is named the Waterfall on Log Hollow Branch. I shortened it to LOG HOLLOW FALLS. This waterfall is 30 feet in height.

Log Hollow Falls is really in two sections. The picture (above this one) is the top part (main part) of the falls, but I wanted to show you the entire waterfall as it flows down the mountain. The elevation here is 3,280 feet.

We hiked further on the trail until we found this 'beauty'. This waterfall has the name: Waterfall on the Southern Tributary of Log Hollow Branch. I shortened it to SOUTH LOG HOLLOW FALLS. The upper drop is about 30 feet in height--but as you can see, it cascades on down the mountain, making it a very long cascade. The elevation here is 3400 feet.

This layered-Eskimo had her picture taken at the South Log Hollow Falls. The only thing missing were my gloves --which were in my backpack -while I took pictures. The temperature on this day was in the upper 20's/lower 30's.

I love this close-up of South Log Hollow Falls --showing the icicles on the rocks.

I had to take George's picture at South Log Hollow Falls. He did have on his gloves!!!!

Here's one more picture of us taken with our tripod, on the little bridge beside Log Hollow Falls.

As much as I loved all of the other waterfalls we saw during those three days, this hike to see these three waterfalls was probably the highlight of the trip for me. I enjoy being WAY back in the mountains with almost nobody around but US and our waterfalls. Life is GOOD!!!!!

On another note, our flooding subsided, and yesterday, George worked on the wall repair. Yesterday, it also SNOWED almost all day long... There were no accumulations ---but I keep wondering what is going on with this crazy weather all over the country.... My My My!!!!

Have a great Tuesday.