Wednesday, August 31, 2011

This Moment

The weather is slowly changing here in east Tennessee. The nights are getting a little cooler, the days are not so hot and we are actually looking forward to "needing" to wear a jacket. While that is still a ways off, I want to remember to enjoy all of the days. To enjoy this moment and to not only look for the next one. Writing each day allows me to do this for it encourages me to be present here and now. Tomorrow is new and different and I will be present, but for now, this moment - ahhhh, this is what I am living for!

Here's to the Ride!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Mountain Nature

We drove to the mountains tonight just to spend a little time in nature. Sitting by the river, watching a beautiful sky, drinking in as much beauty as possible. We have come home revivified, but knowing we will go back. In fact, counting the days until we make our way again down Highway 321, cresting the hill and sighing as the Smokey Mountains come into full view!

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Measuring My Day

Today I spent some time reading and meditating. It feels so good and I am so grateful for the time to sit in quiet stillness. Realizing that all is well. Savoring the moments of this life. Feeling gratitude for family and friends. Feeling appreciation for the beauty granted each day. Knowing love beyond measure. Blessings beyond words.

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sundays are my Favorite

Jim and I have enjoyed a very slow Sunday -sleeping in, chatting over the best coffee, sitting side by side reading the morning paper and eating toasted english muffins. A beautiful relaxing morning.

Then, Jim picked a bucket of pears from the back yard, we rounded up our canning jars, the lids, boiling pots and recipes, and soon we had canned 4 quarts of pears. This too seemed to fit so perfectly into our lazy Sunday.

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Special Day

Today is Jim's birthday and it has been fun to make him feel special all day. It really is such little things that make us feel special, a smile, a touch, a kindness shown. Although we have celebrated many birthdays together, they seem to grow more precious each year. I think that as we count the years, we also count our blessings and realize again - this really is a special day!

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Settling In

Today Jim and I renewed our license plates for Blount County (pronounced Blunt) and registered to vote. We know that with each little step we are settling in more, making this home, and changing our lives. We continue to sight see around town, visiting neighborhoods and shops that we haven't been to before. Today we saw the old and new(er) court house. We had coffee and apple bread at the Vienna Coffee House. We checked out a new driving range, had a picnic in a parking lot and wrapped up the day with a movie. Yep - it's feeling more and more like home!

Here's to the Ride!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Agreements of the Heart

It feels like forever since Jim and I have been to the mountains. So I packed crackers, cheese, ice tea and a book for me and a magazine for Jim and drove to Look Rock Mountain. We sat at the top of the mountain enjoying our evening, planning our future, reminiscing other times and agreeing whole heartedly that Life is Good!

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Happy Dog Day

Yesterday our little John Wayne turned one year old. Although we have only had him with us for the past nine months, we celebrated this little time lapse for him. I am still reminded that he is teaching me - patience, compassion, love and reminding me to look skyward - even when it's raining!

Tonight I asked him to "sit" for his birthday picture, and he was happy to oblige me - of course then we headed to the kitchen for a little b-day treat - teaching me again "do unto others as you would have them do unto you!"

Here's to a little dog joining our Ride!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Learning Knoxville

We spent the day in downtown Knoxville learning some of the history, listening to young artists sing and play guitar at the Blue Chip Cafe, visiting the farmer's market and crafts at Market Square, touring the Blount mansion and a Presbyterian church, watching movies of the Smoky mountains from the early 1900's to the 1960's at the Bijou Theater, and walking Gay street from one end to the other!

Joy is learning the town.

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, August 19, 2011

A Birthday Wish

Today is Tucker's Eighth birthday. I marvel at how quickly the years have gone by and as we count the years we see beauty, love and wonderment in this child who brings so much Joy to our lives. I wish Tucker so much Joy, so much Love, so much Life! I love you, Tucker!

I am so thankful to be a part of his life - and thankful that we get to enjoy this ride together!~

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Joyful Day

Last night we slept with the windows open, but by noon today it was beginning to warm so I closed up the house and turned on the air. I am excited about fall coming, the cool nights, the comfortable days. This will be our first fall by the mountains, and while I know we are still a few weeks away, it feels so good when the evening temperatures drop into the 60's and days are clear. The mountains seem draped in clouds that move towards us in the evening, and by morning the grass is wet with dew. It all unfolds so beautifully - the minutes, the hours, the days - all for my enjoyment!
Joy is appreciating each day!

Here's to the Ride!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Grateful Day

I have been feeling tremendous gratitude for this beautiful day. I have sat in the back yard, a soft breeze blowing, reading and gazing at the sky. I have kept the windows open all day, something I haven't been able to do since early spring, and I hear the birds, the cicadas and the crickets. I see the leaves swaying in the wind and feel Joy at the sight of this beauty. I hold Jim's hand and I am grateful for this love. I prepare a glass of ice tea and I am grateful for this refreshment. I breathe deeply and I am grateful for this life.

There is much to be grateful for.

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Hitting Balls

Jim and I went to the driving range tonight. It was the first time I have hit a ball in about 6 years - and I must admit that it was pretty obvious that I did not have my game on! But still - it was a beautiful evening. We were facing the great Smokey Mountains, my new shoes were comfy, my glove fit - well, like a glove and the sky was gorgeous blue! It's a beautiful ride indeed!

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I promise

Last night we camped at the Great Smokies National Park in a two person tent. Aside from the ground being extremely hard, and the rain dripping in on my forehead - it was a pretty good night.

And while I don't really "get" why people like to camp and sleep outside - I do want to try this again - and next time I promise I won't forget the s'mores!

Here's to the Ride!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Going Camping

So the big day is here! The tent, sleeping bags and coolers are packed in Red Fred and John Wayne has all of his gear packed too!

In case I survive the night, I have packed champagne to have with breakfast! Enjoying the ride!!! woooohooooooo!

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Star Gazing

Jim and I are planning a camping trip for Saturday night. I have not tent camped for 30 something years but I have finally mustered the courage to try it again. The temps are suppose to drop into the 60's tomorrow night so it should be a wonderful night to sit around a camp fire under the full moon, gazing at the stars. The stars are really why I am doing this. Leaving the city lights to be alone on the mountain top with the love of my life and millions of stars!

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, August 11, 2011


I grew up with 3 brothers and learned early how to hold my own. I was a tomboy through and through and could do anything a boy could do. I loved climbing trees and playing cowboys. We spent our days in the yard and the woods making up games and filling our days with fun. We had no close neighbors so we used plenty of imagination, sticks and anything we could get our hands on to play.

When I turned 12 I became a girl - at least that is how I recall it. So when Jim gave me my first pocket knife today - an original Swiss Army campers knife - it made me think of my years as a tomboy. A time that will never be forgotten!

I don't climb trees any more but I do think that I will enjoy telling stories of me and my brothers. Each time I take this knife from my backpack I will remember those tomboy days!

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Let's Play Golf

This morning I cleaned my golf clubs - which haven't been used since June 18, 2005. I found a receipt for the last time that I played golf with Jim in Vero Beach, Florida and my clubs have been stored away since then. However, after finding a beautiful golf course in the mountains, my desire to golf has been renewed.

Yet as I cleaned each club this morning, I was reminded of the many times we did play, especially when we lived in Michigan. We golfed some of the most beautiful courses there, and often with friends - and wonderful friendships that continue until this day. In fact, I can't wait for Deb and Steve to come and play in the mountains with us. Deb is the one who convinced me to take up golf back in the late 80's and we had some wonderful times on the many courses we played. We took a golf vacation to Crystal mountain and Sugar Loaf. We played Jack Nicklaus's famous course, The Bear. We played The Links at Whitehall and one of my favorites was Bennona - playing through a beautiful orchard of apple, pear, peach and plum trees. We played when staying at Turkey Run and I made my first hole in one - most amazing! We played the Pines, the Channel, and on Amelia Island. We played in Jamaica while celebrating our 20th anniversary. We played in Grand Cayman, Cozumel and so many more that I can't recall all the names.

But maybe the most amazing was recalling these memories today by the simple task of cleaning my clubs. Remembering dear friends, recalling the day I got the new clubs and bag from Jenn and Liz (and Jim) on Mother's day. My favorite clubs are my 5 iron, my 7 iron and my 3 wood. I remember practicing with my putter over and over - and still not able to"read" the greens. But this I do remember - I have spent many joyful hours at a golf course and I am looking forward now to new memories, new stories, and new courses to play!

Here's to keeping it in the fairway!!!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Don't you love it when you are so excited that your fingers tap, you feet thump and your heart pounds because you are so excited about something! Well, that's how I feel tonight! Enjoying this ride!

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, August 8, 2011


Jim and I made another trip to the sporting goods store tonight. New golf grips for him and finally new golf shoes for me. I can hardly wait to go golfing now!

It has been exciting to pursue some of the outdoor activities that we have enjoyed over the years. I think our kayaks will get more use here in Tennessee than they ever did in Florida. Our new backpacks have already been used frequently and I keep them packed and ready to go on a moments notice. We are hoping to break in our new light weight tent and sleeping bags this weekend - depending on the weather - and our bicycles have already logged more miles here than Florida and Memphis put together.

Today I bought emergency ponchos to keep in our packs. My picnic basket is stocked 24/7 and the coolers are always stored close by. Swimsuits and beach towels, as well as sunblock, are always waiting in my beach bag and Jim has his fishing gear ready at all times. The portable charcoal grill is packed and folding chairs lay close by.

I have an entire closet dedicated to hiking, camping and picnic stuff! And really, it all is just the necessary amenities for living by the mountains. Joy!

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

We love it here!

As I drove home from the mountains today, I could still see them in my rear view mirror as we followed Hwy 321 back to town. We spent most of the day in the Smokies and filled our day hiking several miles and grilling brats by the river. We drove to a nice fishing place and parked our chairs on the water's edge for a couple of hours. Jim fished as I continued my reading of Science and Health. We planned next weekend's hike and talked about all the things we still want to do. We made plans to golf in the mountains, camp in the mountains and kayak in the mountains!

And still, I kept my eye on the rear view mirror as we drove away - conjuring a plan to lure Jim back here again soon............I think a picnic on Wednesday night would be absolutely perfect. A bottle of wine, a couple of steaks, candles, maybe a chocolate dessert..............Yes, we will be back soon! Very soon!

Here's to the Ride!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Looking at the Horizon

Jim and I drove into Knoxville tonight to check on one of his engineering jobs. Then we headed to a sporting goods store - golf shoes for him, golf glove for me. But as we drove around Knoxville and then finally headed home, our eyes were always on the horizon - looking for a view of mountains and finding joy each time we spotted them.

Joy is a mountain view in the horizon!

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Thursday, August 4, 2011


We came back home with another Uhaul trailer full of "stuff" and I have spent Wednesday unloading and Thursday unpacking. I do marvel how the things we own seem to make us so comfortable. We brought our dinning room set this time and I have enjoyed putting it together and am already making plans to invite new friends to dinner. My Christmas stuff is all stored in the basement along with our winter clothes and I am feeling more and more settled.

I packed away antique blankets today. I set crystal candler holders on the dinning table. I cleared drawers so that I can sort beautiful kitchen utensils gathered from our many shopping trips. I put together my Himalayan Salt lamp from Liz. I found my Nag Champa incense to burn tomorrow. I hung a picture from a long ago time in Muskegon Michigan. I sorted through my grandsons art drawers and threw away numerous empty gum wrappers. I stacked trays of photos in the corner to peruse through at a later time. And then........

I packed a picnic and Jim drove me to the mountains. Wrapping up a beautiful day - unpacked and unwrapped!

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Wonderful Weekend

We arrived back in Memphis late on Friday night and were greeted with a beautiful bouquet of flowers, a platter of Apple Strudel for breakfast and a love note from Liz and Rollin. So we spent the weekend with beautiful flowers, beautiful people and beautiful food.

Family makes life so very good!

Here's to the Ride!