Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. My Header this month shows the mountain ranges and a little left-over Fall Color along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina, 11/1/19.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Oh, those Gorgeous Blue Ridge Mountains

After leaving Biltmore and spending the night in Asheville,  we then traveled the Blue Ridge Parkway --heading north...  Here are some of the things we encountered along the way that day.  I love seeing all of the layers of mountains (above) ---in addition to the clouds...  Below are more pictures... Enlarge the photos for some larger pictures.




Here is a photo of Linville Falls.  We had seen it before --but that was years ago.  George hiked for awhile to get some 'up close' photos---while I took it easy!!!!




This gal loves riding on the parkway...  Can't you see that happy face?




We found a really nice place for a picnic lunch... There was a little creek behind us....SO relaxing.




Here is the little creek behind our picnic table.  Isn't it pretty?

I have many more photos along the parkway --but I'll share them gradually...

Hope you have a wonderful day!!!  Did you get snow yesterday????  We did---but it didn't stick much ---or when it did,  it melted quickly... SO---I'll just say that we had flurries all day!!!!  Oh --how I love SNOW!!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Orchids at the Biltmore Conservatory

The Orchids in the Conservatory at Biltmore House and Gardens are some of the prettiest I have ever seen... Today I will show you some of those gorgeous Orchids... Be sure and enlarge the photos for a better look!
























Aren't these just gorgeous?   I truly don't know much about Orchids ---but I do love seeing them.  There are just so many varieties...

Hope you have a tremendous Tuesday!!!  We have had more rain in 2 days than we had all year I think... It has rained and rained and rained.  Now --they say we might get some snow flurries... December is almost here!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas at Biltmore Estate

George and I took a  Thanksgiving Trip this year...  After all that I (both of us) have been through the past 6 weeks,  we NEEDED some time to get away with our cameras... It was not a strenuous trip for me ---and other than a stinkin' stiff neck,   I did GREAT....

Our first stop was one of our favorite places,  the Biltmore House and Gardens in Asheville, North Carolina.   I love Biltmore during all seasons,  but Christmas in the Conservatory is one of my favorite times of the year.  I love all of the Christmas reds and greens ---and I love tropical plants.  Biltmore does a good job with displaying so much beauty in their Conservatory.

Today I'll share with you some photos from Biltmore... Be sure and enlarge the photos to 16 x 10  for better pictures...





















Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We certainly did!!!!!  Now---I  have to stop and think about  Christmas...  I love Christmas and love to decorate.  However,  with my lack of energy this year,  I may just tone down some of the decorations...

Hugs,
Betsy

Friday, November 18, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Gifs by Oriza "
George and I are taking next week off from blogging.   Thanksgiving is next Thursday and we want to spend time with each other,   visit family and friends,  and just spend the week being very thankful for all of our many blessings.



Gifs by Oriza "

Thanksgiving is a special time for me... I remember,  when I was a little girl,  waiting for my two brothers to come 'home' for Thanksgiving.  My mother was an excellent cook---and the special Thanksgiving dinners (along with the stories around the table) will always be in my memory ---and bring huge smiles to my face.


I also am thankful for you,  my special blog friends...  I will close with this poem--just for YOU.


I'm Thankful for YOU
by Joanna Fuchs

Thanksgiving is the appointed time
for focusing on the good in our lives.
In each of our days,
we can find small blessings,
but too often we overlook them, 
choosing instead to spend our time
paying attention to problems.
We give our energy
to those who cause us trouble
instead of those who bring peace.
Starting now,
let's be on the lookout
for the bits of pleasure in each hour,
and appreciate the people who
bring love and light to everyone
who is blessed to know them.
YOU are one of those people.
On Thanksgiving, 
I'm thankful for you.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope all of you have a great week.  We'll be back in touch on Monday,  November 28.  God Bless ALL of you!

Hugs,
Betsy



Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Last Views of our Autumn 2011

When we took a ride a couple of weeks ago,  we got some great Autumn photos right here in Fairfield Glade...  Today all of those colors are gone ---and the leaves are ALL on the ground.  We had rain yesterday all day ---and expect more today... But---as George would say,  "At least it's not SNOW!!!"

I showed some Autumn photos on November 7 (click HERE if you missed  that post)...  Since I had a few more to show,  I decided to give you one last look at our Fall 2011 pictures.  You can enlarge the photos to 16x10 by clicking on them.  

A similar photo (to the one shown above)  was a favorite in the Nov. 7th post ---so I decided to show you another similar one today... We are looking across Canterbury Lake ---and the sun is setting behind us.  The sun is providing a fabulous look to the trees ahead of us,  making it look like everything (including the lake) is on FIRE.... Hope you enjoy this one and the ones below.




The Burning Bush is a favorite here in Fairfield Glade...  It also shows off its RED color in late Fall.




These gorgeous trees were beside the lake.   Aren't they pretty --against that beautiful blue sky????




Finally,  here is another photo showing Autumn in Fairfield Glade --along with more of the Cumberland Plateau.    Fall turned out GREAT here this year ---especially late Fall --when all of the trees were turning.

Hope you enjoyed my last set of Autumn photos from 2011....  Now--we'll look forward to a long winter followed by a gorgeous spring..... Life goes on!!!!

Since many of you have asked about my health,  I am here to tell you that I am doing much better.  I even went with George on Monday to Tullahoma (2.5 hours from here) to see his 99 yr. old father.  I did well---although I was tired when I got home.  My energy level is still zilch---but with each passing day,  there's improvement... Yeah Rah!!!!

Dad Adams seems to be doing okay other than the fact that his memory is getting worse.  He 'wolfed down' an entire fish sandwich for lunch and loved the RIDE we took him on. Bless his heart!!!!

Have a great Wednesday.
Hugs,
Betsy

Monday, November 14, 2011

Our Favorite Winter Flower

Those of you who have been visiting my blog regularly for several years  know what our favorite winter flower is here in Fairfield Glade, TN....  It's our little PANSIES.   We can plant them in late Fall---and unless we have a horribly cold winter (which we usually do not),  they will last until it gets really hot here (usually July).  They start small (as in today's pictures) ---but will grow and spread ---especially in the spring...  They do provide a little color in our yard through the long winter season.

I went outside with my camera on 11/11/11 ---and took some pictures of some of our Pansies to share with you today..   The picture above shows one of THREE round flowerbeds in our front yard where our Pansies are planted.   We cannot use the entire bed because spring bulbs (Daffodils, Hyacinths, and Lilies) are all planted there.   SO---the Pansies get the outside rim and the inside rim....  Be sure to enlarge the photos to 16x10 for larger pictures.




 This  little Pansy is just so pretty.  I love the colors.





I love  this little yellow one...  I said this last year ---but can't you see the ANGELS in the Pansies?????  I am an angel collector ---so maybe, that's another reason I love Pansies.




Even though this little guy has a 'hole' in him,  you can still see the angel.... I also love the color of this one.




This little pink Pansy is diferent ---but you can still see the angel!!!!




Here is another pretty one --which is different from some of the rest of them.




Finally,  here's one of my favorite colored Pansies....  That rich 'wine-ish' color is just so pretty ---and really shows up in the flowerbed.

IF you live in Tennessee and are looking for some great winter plants,  be sure and plant some precious little Pansies!!!!!  They bring joy to us!!!

Hope you had a wonderful weekend...  I am feeling better and better.   We even went out for another little ride on Saturday ---which felt GREAT....

Hugs,
Betsy

Friday, November 11, 2011

Irises in our Yard in NOVEMBER

Both George and I have talked about our RE-blooming Irises...   We have several ---and have enjoyed their blooms (not only in the spring/summer ---but especially in the FALL).   Tonight I'll share with you a few pictures of our FALL Irises... 

Since I have been sick,   all of these are George's pictures... Thanks, Honey, for letting me share them!!!!!   Above is a 'group' picture of some of them...  All of these Re-blooming Irises are in our new flowerbed near the road...  There is alot of sun there,  and Irises love sun!!!!  (Click on my photos to enlarge them to 16x10.)




This gorgeous yellow one is named  "Waltz Across Texas".




And this one is named "Blatant".   I love this photo with the water drops on it.




And finally,  this pretty one is called  "Floor Show".   Isn't it just neat to see beautiful Irises blooming in the Fall?????   Which one do you like the best?????

Our temperature lows last night were predicted to be in the 20's.... SO---George brought more blooming roses inside and also a group of these beautiful Irises.  I love seeing them in the yard ---but it's great to admire them inside also....

Hope you have a good weekend.  I am still healing ---and am not being as patient as I should be.   I yearn for the morning when I can wake up and say:  "Gee---I feel AWESOME today!"   (I'm not there yet!!!! Sigh!)

Hugs,
Betsy

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Winter Forecast 2011-12

Every year, in our local paper,  one of the 'old-timers' in our area (Melinda Lane Hedgecoth) predicts what our winter will be here on the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee.  Melinda is actually the daughter of the woman who used to make these predictions.. Melinda's mother is no longer alive,  so Melinda has carried on the tradition.  Melinda (and other Crab Orchard Old-Timers around this area) use NATURE when making their predictions.  AND --to be honest,  these folks (like those in the Old Farmers' Almanac) are usually more accurate than the professional weather people.

Here are some of the predictions for us this winter:
--We won't have as harsh a winter this year as we did last,  due to the fact that there are very few wooly worms in our area this fall.
--Only FOUR early morning fogs were seen in our area in August,  with only one of them being very heavy;  That means that we'll  only have four snows this winter --with only one of them heavy.
--Our lack of a large mast crop this Fall is another indicator of a milder winter. 
--HOWEVER,  the cornhusks were thick this year --which indicates a harsh winter.....
--The evidence of a lot of spider webs indicates that whatever winter weather we get will be mainly in the form of ICE (Yuk) and will be very cold but with minimal snow.

Harsh weather usually falls around the changing of the moon phase and any snow that falls on a full moon usually melts off fast.  But---if it falls on a new moon,  it usually will hang on for a few days,  spawning the additional predictor of  "if a snow hangs on for several days,  it's usually waiting around on another one"----meaning there'll soon be another snow.

Thus,  they are telling us to keep an eye on Nov. 10 (full moon) and Nov. 25 as this is a new moon.   Also,  we need to watch Dec. 10 (full moon) and Dec. 24 (new moon).   SO---for all of us hoping for a white Christmas,   we may just get one!!!!!

Melinda said that her Mama always said that her Dad told her that winter was never officially over until after Easter (April 8, 2012).   SO----she told us to button up our overcoats and stay warm for what could be a cold, perhaps icy,  yet milder winter than last year. 

+++++++++++++
I guess (as a snow-lover) that this winter will not be a favorite of mine... But--I know how much George hates to shovel snow... SO---I guess I need to be happy...  BUT--I certainly don't like the idea of ICE...... Oh Well!!!!!

What is the weather going to be in your area?  Looks like the north is in for a very harsh winter...

Have a wonderful day.
Hugs,
Betsy

Monday, November 7, 2011

Late Fall in Fairfield Glade

There's something uniquely special about LATE Fall...  I love all of the REDS and RUSTS this time of year... All of the Fall colors are special---but right now, ALL of the leaves left on the trees are showing off their end-of-the-year color!!!!!

George took me for a short ride on Saturday afternoon late. The sun was going down ---so the colors were magnificent... I want to share some pictures today that we took during this little ride... The picture above was taken at an over look near Fairway 14 of the Druid Hills Golf Course.  You get a great view of the Cumberland Plateau in this picture.  You can enlarge all of my pictures to 16x10.




I love the REDS of Fall ---and this particular Maple is showing off for us...  Pretty, huh,  against that blue sky????




AND---I don't want to forget the YELLOWS of Fall... Here's a pretty one for you!




Finally,   here's a picture we took across one of our many lakes (Canterbury) in the Glade.  The sun was really going down ---but I loved the way that sun portrayed its colors across and on the lake... Looks like the trees are on fire,  doesn't it??????

I have more Late Autumn pictures to share ----so will show you another set on Wednesday.   Thanks again for the MANY get-well wishes.  I am gradually getting my strength back---but am trying to take it easy ---as much as possible.

Hugs,
Betsy

Friday, November 4, 2011

The Smile is BACK

Thank ALL of you for the notes, cards, calls, ecards, texts, Facebook notes,  and emails... I have been a sick little kitty---having been in the hospital 2 different times for the total of 9 days!!!!!  Even though I published 7 blogs after getting sick (since they were in the 'hopper' ready to post),  I think I have been sick for about 16-17 days.  I have never been this sick before.

First,  I had abdominal bleeding --which they fixed (after I had 4 units of blood).  (I had been anemic for awhile --and they finally found the 'bleed'.)  Then,  the hardest part was that, after that,  I had a blockage inside of me ---preventing me from having a bowel movement.   My poor tummy looked like it had a basketball in it,  or maybe I was about 10 months pregnant... ha

After lots of agony ---they finally put me back into the hospital and ran a bunch of tests...  The CT Scan (with liquids going through my body) found the culprit..... I had developed a HERNIA right on top of my small bowel.  

Surgery to repair the hernia happened this past Tuesday ---and I came home on Wednesday feeling like a new person.  I'm still not 100% --and have to take it easy for awhile... SO--I may not post a blog (or be on Facebook) every day yet... BUT--I'll do some each day --gradually gathering my strength back.

George has been wonderful protecting me through all of this.  He has taken care of me from beginning to end --and I truly couldn't have gotten through this without him...

This has been hard for a gal like me who is NEVER sick!!!!!!!   The picture above was taken on our recent trip to West Virginia....  Can't wait to get out there and hike again!!!!

Hugs and Thanks Again to ALL.  I have missed you so much!
Betsy