Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Do your actions match your words? Elaborate.

I hope they do.  I would hope that my life exhibits to others what I believe in and profess.  My prayer is that others would see Jesus in me each day.  But, to be honest, I know there are and have been many times that was not the reality.

2. Sick as a dog, go to the dogs, dog days of summer, dog tired, it's a dog's life, every dog has it's day, can't teach an old dog new doggone it which saying could most recently be applied to your life?

Most recently it would have to be sick as a dog.  I awoke this morning feeling dizzy, so woozy I couldn't hold my head up and nauseous.  I finally lost everything I'd eaten for two days, and now feel a wee bit better.  Just hope I'm up to making the three and a half hour drive I have for the afternoon.

3. Your favorite book featuring a dog in the storyline? What makes it a favorite

There is not one.

4. What's something you hope to one day have the confidence to do?

Market my paintings

5. August 16th is National Tell a Joke Day. So tell us a joke.

I am not a joke teller and can't think of one I've heard.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Last Wednesday I wrote that our GRANDEST Moment this month was yet to happen.  Three of our Dallas Grands came for the weekend.  And Grand it was!

On Saturday, we went to Natchitoches, the oldest permanent French settlement in Louisiana and voted the #1 small town in America.
We began with a horse-drawn carriage tour of the town.  They loved seeing the old homes and hearing a lot of the history.  Did you know this is where the movie "Steel Magnolia" was filmed?
 And, we introduced them to the famous Natchitoches Meat Pie.
 This was just one of the beautiful buildings and courtyard.
A short rain shower stopped us in this lovely entry.

We sampled Cajun coffees, oils, and dip mixtures in one cute little shop.  We toured the oldest hardware store still owned and operated by the same family, five generations, in America, before treating ourselves to floats and cups of ice cream.

After all that, no one was ready for the Cajun food we went there to eat, so we ordered large Seafood Sampler plates and bowls of gumbo and crayfish ettoufee to take home.  We ended this fun-filled day with a game of Mexican Train and lots of laughs.

On Sunday, we had an even GRANDER moment when our son and his family met us for lunch as they were passing through on their way back home to Indiana.
There is nothing GRANDER than having family together and seeing these cousins love on each other.
This truly was a God ordained GRAND MOMENT!

Linking with all the other Wednesday Hodgepodgers HERE.

Monday, August 14, 2017

From the Ashes

 $80M Malibu Castle Rises From the Ashes and Sets Pricing Record

 Malibu Castle was a local landmark for years.

It's a location with a storied background. Other than the pier, the former Malibu Castle was the town's most prominent man-made landmark. Folks could gaze up the hills from Malibu's town center and see the towers, turrets, and flags. The parties on the property were also epic—until a devastating fire burned the place to the ground in 2007.

Former New York socialite Lilly Lawrence narrowly escaped being burned to death when one of a string of Southern California wild land fires destroyed her $17 million castle.


The 67-year-old millionairess said she didn't realize the wind-whipped blaze was at the doorstep of her 6,256-square-foot Malibu Hills home until a friend called from New York to tell her.

 Lawrence's mansion was among at least 23 homes and businesses damaged or destroyed in the fires.

Lawrence's six-bedroom mansion resembling a 13th century Scottish castle, had appeared in "Fantasy Island" and "The Rockford Files."

Her priceless Elvis Presley memorabilia collection, including one of the King's cars, was lost.

It was reported that "The loss is way up in the double-digit millions." She also lost countless heirlooms from her father, Reza Fallah, once the oil minister for the Shah of Iran.

The land lay untouched for several years until a realtor took interest.  After the fire, the land was listed for $17 million, but after more than a year of negotiations, an offer of $9.7 million was accepted by the previous owner, philanthropist and “princess” Lilly Lawrence.

Now, a jaw-dropping estate has been built on the site of the iconic Malibu Castle and is priced at $80 million.

According to the listing, it is "the highest price ever for an estate in this coveted beach community.
 120-foot-long great room 120-foot-long great room

Deck with a view
Deck with a view

Owner/Builder, Gillen said, "I tripled my original building budget and went all in. The house has been complicated to build."

This compound on a hill contains two large structures. The 10,500-square-foot main residence has five bedrooms and six bathrooms. It features a 120-foot-long great room with ocean views. A custom teak dining table parallels the 75-foot-long infinity pool.

And as the ultimate luxury amenity, one year of concierge service is included in the purchase price. The service will ensure the residence is fully stocked to your culinary tastes 

 75-foot-infinity pool 75-foot-infinity pool

Master bath with black walnut soaker tub and a view
Master bath with black walnut soaker tub and a view
Custom teak dining table
Custom teak dining table

There's a detached 4,000-square-foot guesthouse, which features a great room, kitchen, gym, spa, two bedrooms, and four bathrooms. Both structures have floor-to-ceiling walls of glass to take in the spectacular views.

Two main structures in the new Malibu Castle compound
Two main structures in the new Malibu Castle compound

With a home like this can you ever imagine wanting to leave.  And for a whole year, you just simply see to it that the concierge service delivers whatever your heart desires.
Watch the sunset and sunrise from this modern castle.
Watch the sunset and sunrise from this modern castle
Linking with Amaze Me Monday 

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

It's A Grand Hodgepodge

It is good to be back on the Hodgepodge with our hostess and new Grandmother, Joyce.
If you would like to see how she and others have answered the questions, click HERE.

1. Do you try to set rules for yourself about how you use your time? Explain.

When I first retired I did.  I came from a job that required met deadlines.  I was very goal orientated; therefore I had to accomplish something every day.  I was also a wee bit driven to accomplish all those things I had envisioned doing in retirement in the first few weeks.

Six years later, I am not nearly so driven.  Okay, to be honest, there isn't much drive period.  I love being retired but I don't set expectations or goals for myself anymore.  We do have a couple understood rules and those are to make up the bed every morning and to have no clutter.  I keep a very nice house, but it's not because of set rules.  It is because we like it that way.

2. Monday was National Lighthouse Day. Have you ever visited a lighthouse? If not, do you have any desire to see one up close? Of the 10 Most Beautiful that made this list which would you most like to see in person-

Yes, we have visited a couple lighthouses.  One on the east coast and one during our recent trip to Mackinac Island.  The Old Mackinac Lighthouse (below) is only 3 miles from the White Shoal Light in Michigan.
We saw these smaller automated light houses while on the ferry to the island.

Lindau Lighthouse (Germany), Fanad Lighthouse (Ireland), Portland Head Light (Maine), Yaquina Bay Light (Oregon) The St. Augustine Light (Florida), Peggys Point Lighthouse (Canada), Start Point Lighthouse (England), Tower of Hercules (Spain), Bass Harbor Head Station (Maine), and White Shoal Light (Michigan)
As you've heard me say before, because my granddaughter has fallen in with Spain, so have I because I'm seeing it through her eyes.  But, I think it would be so exciting to visit the oldest lighthouse in the world, the Tower of Hercules in northwest Spain.

When you've been away, what's your 'lighthouse' telling you you're on the right road home?

Figuratively, it is knowing there is no place I would rather be.

Literally, it depends on from which direction I am coming.  From the north, it is getting on Interstate 49 south in Texarkana, AR.; from the west, it is the Louisiana State Line; from the east, it is the I220 By-pass; from the south, it is the Southern Loop Exit.

3. What have you unintentionally stopped doing? Is this something you need to pick back up and begin again, or is it something you need to let go of for now (or even permanently)?

That would be painting.  I have just not been in the mood and totally without inspiration.  I have also run out of places to hang them and no one else wants what I paint.  I do hope to get back to it soon, though.

4. We've had a full week of August. Share a GRAND moment from your month so far.

The GRANDEST moment is yet to come.  Three of our GRANDS are coming this weekend for a visit.  We can hardly wait.

5. Tell us one song you love with the word 'baby' in the title.

I can't do just one.  There were so many great songs from the 60's that had the word 'baby' in the title.
"Since I Met You Baby" by the Ivory Joe Hunter
"There Goes My Baby" by the Drifters
"Baby Love" by the Supremes
"Baby It's Cold Outside" by Dean Martin
"Baby I Need Your Loving" by the Four Tops
"Be My Baby" by the The Ronettes

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

 I continue my fascination with the fowl seen from our sunroom.
 Dick and I had the best time watching a dove on the back fence during a recent downpour.  It was literally taking a shower.  It would raise one wing and then another.  Then when it sensed us watching, it would preen and pose.  We had never seen this before.
Speaking of taking a shower, I caught a Robin taking a bath.  It was hilarious to watch this rambunctious bird splash and shake, then do it again over and over.  You can see the splashed water in the pictures.  When it was finished, it hung itself out to dry.
And of course, I never tire of watching the hummingbirds.  I do wish I could capture the true iridescence of their wings and feathers.

"Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flow'rs before Thee, op'ning to the sun above.

All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heav'n reflect Thy rays,
Stars and angels sing around Thee, center of unbroken praise.
 Field and forest, vale and mountain, flow'ry meadow, flashing sea,
Singing bird and flowing fountain, call us to rejoice in Thee."

May you have a great rest of your week.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Oldest Brick House in America

Should you be in the market for history and nostalgia, this just might be the house for you.

Solid as a Rock, America's Oldest Brick House Has Been Standing Since 1680

At over 300 years old, this house is considered by many historians as the oldest all-brick house in America.
It is located in Medford, MA.

Now, to put into perspective just how old 300 years really is, here are some details.

 This home has been around for eight wars, including the American Revolution, 17 world’s fairs, and 45 U.S. presidents.

The 2,640-square-foot home sits atop a small knoll behind a granite wall. According to the listing agent, Louise Ivers, the historic home was recently taken off the market so that a new driveway could be installed. The sellers still want to find a buyer, she adds.

The home has four bedrooms and one bathroom, and most of the rooms come with a fireplace. Nine-over-nine windows let in plenty of sunlight; on days when the light is scarce, there are seven fireplaces that provide illumination. The first floor features hand-hewn wooden beams and a staircase.

Front exterior
Front exterior
Plaque outside home
Plaque outside home
“The house is so interesting because it is a classic example of a circa 1680 solid brick house.

The home is believed to have been built around 1680 by Peter Tufts (yes, as in the university, which his descendant later donated the land for).

The solid brick exterior is a combination of Flemish bond and English style, but the materials are local—the family owned a brickyard in Medford.

After a close call with the demolition ball in the late 1880s, the property was saved when Gen. Samuel Lawrence gave it, along with an interior remodel, as a wedding gift to his niece.

It’s also been known as the “Fort” or “Garrison House” due to the thick walls and porthole windows on the west side and front of the house. The home was placed on the city seal of Medford in 1892.

Massive fireplace
Massive fireplace
Nine-over-nine windows
Nine-over-nine windows
The Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (now known as Historic New England) acquired the home near the turn of the previous century and managed it for the next 50 years. It was eventually purchased by the Medford Historical Society and Museum in 1980.
According to a 2016 report in Wicked Local Medford by John Anderson, president of the Medford Historical Society and Museum, the house has been rented out on a month-by-month basis since the caretakers moved out in 2013. The MHSM has spent more than $45,000 to address safety and livability issues, but has run out of funds to continue its stewardship of the property.

Living with so much history is not without its conditions. The deed includes a permanent preservation restriction administered by Historic New England, which states that the property cannot be subdivided or demolished and protects the whole exterior and much of the interior. The group performs annual inspections for compliance and must approve any work done on the house.
According to Ivers, the home, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, is ideal for someone who appreciates history and old homes. Potential buyers with a deep love for the history of New England will feel right at home here.

Keep out eye for it's new listing as soon as the driveway is completed.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Having Fun Getting Older

I found these quotes and thought who else can laugh and enjoy the thrills of getting older than one who is actually doing it.

That's me and I love a little bit everything about it.  Well maybe not even that some days.  But, at least we can laugh about it.

One day last week I did what I call an hour of self-imposed humiliation.  I went swimsuit shopping!
Heaven's to Betsy!

This will give you a chuckle!

Now, on a more positive note!
"They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green,"

This is my motto!

Isaiah 46:4
"Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He, I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you."
 May we all enjoy the good parts of getting old and be able to laugh at or at least not complain too much about the not so good.

Amaze Me Monday 

Friday, August 4, 2017

Friday Fotos

I am joining Deb for her 90th week of Friday Foto Friends.

These are a few of the pictures I took while on Mackinac Island several weeks ago.

An old beaver dam and evidence of their work.
This was an interesting parking place for a boat.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Wednesday Ramblings

Since we aren't having our Wednesday Hodgepodge this week, I thought I would share some different things with you.

SilverSneakers Bonding
I recently read this article on how to have a good relationship with your adult children.  Even the closet families can have room for improvement some times.  This article contained some good information.

These are some amazing photos of God's amazing creation
Can you imagine yourself on this little winding path in Bavaria with this colorful sky overhead?
 Is this not the most perfect mountainous sunrise!
 Because of my granddaughter's love for Spain, anything having to do with that beautiful country catches my eye.  Can you imagine taking a hike on this steep path with such a breathtaking ocean view?  Not with my knees but I can dream, can't I?

These are a few pictures I took this past weekend while out for a Sunday afternoon drive with Hubby.
Wallace Lake Dam is managed by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers and is located about ten miles south of our house on picturesque Wallace Lake.  We had no idea it existed until that day.

Wallace Lake was created when the dam was built as a flood control lake, protecting a large area of agricultural land below it from seasonal flooding.  It is a wooded lake containing beautiful moss draped cypress trees and known for great fishing.  I understand it is only about 2 feet deep.
 This dam or spillway was built in 1946 strictly for the purpose of flood control.  It is now the sight for perhaps clandestine meetings, graffiti expression and Sunday afternoon explorings.
 We climbed the levy for this over view.  It was quite a climb but worth it.
The lake is out of sight off to the left somewhere, hidden among the trees. 
 I found it interesting that this was labeled as the Wallace Lake Mural Project.
 I'm afraid it has become more of a place for artists with a strange sense of expression.
 This young man was very busy moving the length of the dam with a spray paint can.  I was never able to see what he was doing unless he was painting over something. That could keep him occupied for quite a while.
 I loved this peaceful scene and it's as close to a rushing stream as we get here.

We then took another interesting little country road that we had never seen before and continued our exploration.  These beauties caught our eye and camera lens.
Dick said this is a good example of  "the grass is always greener on the other side."

We came into the tiny little village of Gayle, consisting of three large plantation homes and an old general store/post office.  The village was probably less than a mile long, but so pretty with acres of depth in farm land.
This was one of many beautiful old Oak trees surrounding the homes, with limbs looking like spider legs moving across the landscape.  So typical of the south.

I hope you have enjoyed my ramblings and have a great rest of your week.  Hodgepodge will return next week after Joyce bonds with her new perfect grandson.