Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. My Header Picture for January 2021 is a beautiful picture taken in our yard of a big snow in 2006 (when we used to have large amounts of snow here). I added this one since I love seeing the beautiful RED Cardinal in the bushes... I'll bet he was COLD.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

2020 Memories

Dear Blog Friends,  I was hoping to get this post ready for yesterday --but just didn't finish it... I will say that when looking back on 2020,  in the midst of all of the struggles,  there were some great happenings --and now, great memories.  Today I will share some of the good times in 2020.  

Beginning with the picture above:  In January, 2020,   son Mark and his gal, Robin,  treated George and me to a Night Out in Downtown Knoxville.  They first took us to a restaurant for an awesome dinner,  and THEN  we went to the theater for a fabulous production entitled  DRUMLINE LIVE...  Wow--what a great show --and evening...  That was definitely a highlight in 2020.  

 


For George's Birthday trip this year,  March of 2020,  we visited BLACKWATER FALLS State Park in West Virginia...  We hiked to the Lindy Point overlook in the park and had a great view of the gorge below...(This trip was JUST before the Covid Virus came to our area and caused all kinds of problems in our country.)



After Covid 'hit'--we didn't do much for awhile other than stay at home...It was hard since traveling and doing the things we wanted to do weren't happening now.. Even buying 'normal' things at the Grocery Stores was hard.   Those hard times --especially, not getting to be with family or friends--were difficult.   SO--for Mother's Day (May, 2020),  Mark and Robin took us to the top of a mountain (Buck Bald, TN) and cooked us an awesome picnic lunch/dinner... YUM...  It was wonderful seeing them and spending time with them that day--where we could 'social distance' in the Great Outdoors... Those kids worked SO hard to do this for us,  and it is definitely a great highlight for us, during a difficult 2020!



Through all of the gloomy and hard times in 2020,  there's one thing which never ever changed...  We enjoyed all of our beautiful spring/summer/fall FLOWERS  ---and all of them bloomed showing off their beauty despite the Covid Virus.   AND --they didn't even have to wear a mask nor 'social distance'....  ha

 


After cancelling several trips,  we finally decided to make a short trip to PISGAH INN (not far from Asheville, North Carolina) for a few days in June, 2020 (to celebrate our anniversary).  The Inn did a fabulous job of helping us to follow the rules, and remain safe.  We had dinner reservations --and the restaurant did a great job of spacing the tables out due to Social Distancing.  AND--Breakfasts were brought to our room each morning.  That worked well--and we were SO happy to take this much-needed trip.   This picture was taken from our room with a view of some fog in the mountains. 

 


On our trip to Pisgah Inn in June of 2020,  we drove on the Blue Ridge Parkway beyond the Craggy Gardens area --just to visit a waterfall which we hadn't seen in awhile... This huge cascade is named  Roaring Fork Falls  Isn't it gorgeous? 

 


After cancelling a couple of short trips in Spring,  George and I finally made a trip to one of our favorite places,  the BILTMORE HOUSE and GARDENS  (Asheville, NC) in July 2020.  We missed most of the Spring blooms this year,  but this collage shows you some of what we saw that day.

 

 

In August, 2020,  to celebrate my Birthday,  we first went to the Peaks of Otter and then to the Skyland Resort (in Virginia) --for our longest trip since Covid began.   Again though,  everywhere we went, people did a fantastic job of helping to keep us safe...  Social Distancing was well-done --and we wore masks almost everywhere we went.   We had a great time --and one of the many highlights of this trip was on my Birthday,  when we visited the LURAY CAVERNS  in Luray, Virginia.   I had been to the caverns when I was a child,  but it was great getting to go back this trip.... We both thoroughly enjoyed the caverns. 

 

 


And the BIGGEST HIGHLIGHT of 2020 for me was when George took me to an overlook on Skyline Drive ON my Birthday (August 5, 2020) ---and this amazing sunrise was there JUST for ME.    How awesome is this!!!!!  I've seen a lot of sunrises through the years --but this one has to be one of the best for me!  



1. A picture taken from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park of the beautiful COLORS;

In mid-October 2020,   George and I made our 'annual' "Fall Colors Trip"  to check out the Fall Beauty  in the Smokies (one day) and also along the Cherohala Skyway (2nd day).  We spent the night at the Fryemont Inn in Bryson City, NC...   Social Distancing/Mask wearing all worked out well on this trip also ---and as you can see by the pictures,  the Autumn Colors were marvelous this year!!!!

 


2.  The next day we drove along the Cherohala  Skyway ---and loved the Fall Colors we saw!!!  (Talk about finding the perfect day/days to be there!!!!)

 


The hardest part of 2020 was during the holidays... Covid got worse in our area --so everyone was being even more careful --including us.  George and I cancelled our early December trip to Ocean Isle Beach --which made us both sad.   AND --not having any family gatherings at either Thanksgiving or Christmas wasn't easy this year.   We did manage to see all of our kids/families during December --but that meant a lot of driving for us...

As exhausting and depressing as 2020 was,   I must say that getting some snow here on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day was FANTASTIC for the snow-lover in the family, ME!!!!!   The picture shows a White Christmas-- for the first time since 2010.  Thanks be to God for sunrises/sunsets/and SNOW!!!!! 

Most of us have entered 2021 with new hopes,  new joys,  new dreams ---while waiting  (not so patiently) for the Covid Virus to leave us FOREVER...  By the way,  George and I got the FIRST Covid VACCINE on January 2, 2021--and are waiting to get an appointment to get our 2nd shot  soon....  YEAH!!!!!!

Blessings to all for an awesome 2021... I'm not sure how much more BLOGGING I am going to do this year,  but right now,  I'm running on empty!!!!!!  I am still struggling with all of the Blogger changes --which take away much of the freedom we have of personalizing our blogs to what WE want.  AND--that has taken much of my joy OUT of blogging.  I will be back ---when I have something to share!!!  

Much Love to ALL,

Betsy💝💛💚💕


 

21 comments:

Agnieszka Mikołajczyk said...

Pięknie zdjęcia

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

You took some wonderful trips. We stayed home so we are bursting to get out but will wait a while longer. It's been so difficult to know what to do. Love your Mother's day outing! Happy new year my friend!

Big Dude said...

You guys did a much better job of making memories in 2020 than we did. I'm sure you enjoyed the white Christmas just as I did.

George said...

We had many wonderful things happen in 2020, and you did a great job of summarizing all those great memories. Your photos are gorgeous.

Ruth Hiebert said...

You were given some spectacular sights, even during hard times. I find that when I look back it often looks so much better than while in the midst of things. I've thought of quitting my blog, but everytime I do, someone leaves an encouraging comment and I keep on going. I hope you will find a way to keep on connecting this way as well.I always enjoy seeing your photos.

Fun60 said...

You did well to do so much. I've done nothing really and finding something of interest to post is becoming difficult so not sure how many posts I will write this coming year.

David said...

Betsy, Great photos and great memories. Like your glass is half full attitude! We've stayed home with zero trips but we're glad we've stayed Covid free and plan to stay that way. Hopefully 2021 will evolve into a time when we can all hit the road and embrace life a little more. Stay Safe and Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

Lady Fi said...

So many lovely memories!

Ginny Hartzler said...

I think your sunrise is my favorite. You did manage to have a fun year despite everything!!

Barb said...

So glad you and George could make some more happy memories this past year, Betsy. You both look great! I love those fall shots. Stay well.

Unknown said...

Enjoyed your blog and beautiful pictures! So glad you and George have each other and got to make a few trips in 2020. Love you, Judith

Ann said...

I'm glad you have some beautiful memories of 2020.

The Furry Gnome said...

Trust you to be able to see the positives in a tough year!

Lowcarb team member said...

Hello Betsy
I enjoyed your look back, some wonderful photographs and special memories.
I do hope you will continue blogging. I always enjoy my visits to your blog.
In the meantime take care, sending my good wishes.

All the best Jan

Dee said...

Dear Betsy, it's so refreshing and inspiring to read someone's list of all to be grateful for as we look back on 2020. You both displayed the intripid fortitude of our ancestors. Those who came here and settled. You both so love nature and your photographs always make me want to get out and just "hug" a tree! Thank you. Peace. PS: so glad to learn that you both have gotten your first vaccine shot. That hasn't happened here in Missouri for those of us who are older. Hopefully, though, it will happen in the next few weeks. Peace.

Linda said...

Beautiful pictures! I love how you found special things to do in spite of the pandemic. Glad you got the vaccine, part I. I tried to get an appointment but so far they are booked up. Maybe next week.

Linda G. said...

Wonderful memories for sure! I am not blogging much either. There isn’t anything to write about, when most of my existence is at home. We are waiting for our opportunity to receive the vaccine. That opportunity can’t come soon enough!

Chat with Kathleen said...

Betsy and George
My longtime friends
Happy New Year 2021
I greatly enjoy ready of all your adventures and trips in spite of COVID-19
You both always put a smile on my face when I am 😢
Hugs 🤗 stay safe and healthy
Kathleen from RI

Shug said...

enjoyed all of your photos from this past year...The best part about blogging is having the memories posted, where you can just quickly look back and review the year...AND of course, all the wonderful friends....Wishing you and George a Fabulous 2021 full of so many great times...

Kay said...

Despite the pandemic, I'm so happy you and George got to enjoy some time out enjoying the country this past year. Have a wonderful 2021, Betsy.

diane b said...

This is a great post with super photos. You are lucky to have the vaccine already. We won't have it for a few months yet but we don't have any cases of community spread Covid in Australia. It is contained in quarantine hotels housing returned travellers. IT would be sad to see you leave blogger but I agree with you. Why do they have to change what already works well.