Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Post Reunion Post

I am going to jump from the beginning of our month-long tripping to the end.  I think you will understand.

Image result for american flag images

Last weekend I attended a school reunion.  I only attended this small rural school from half my eighth grade year through the tenth grade, 1958 - 1960.  I have maintained contact with several from my class through the years and they have been kind enough to invite me to 1962 class reunions.  That's one of the blessings from attending small country schools.  However, this was my first time to attend this school alumni gathering.

Saturday, I heard a story about two of my classmates I had not heard before.  Being that yesterday was Memorial Day, I think it is appropriate to share, and I want to keep a record of it.

Two years ago, my dear, dear friend, Donald Ray Byrd was inducted into the Poland High School Hall of Fame.  There were many reasons for this, but to me the greatest reason would have been his character.  He is without question one of the finest human beings I have the honor of knowing.  I called him "Bubba" because I loved him like a brother, and still do.

He reminded me that my sister and I would occasionally take him water when he would be driving a tractor in the fields.  He has always been such a hard worker.

Right after high school graduation, Donald Ray and his best buddy, Charles Lee (both seen here) went to the the army recruiting office together.  They had known each other all of their lives; lived near each other; started 1st grade together; graduated together, and then enlisted together.

I learned that they were always stationed together and were even shipped to Vietnam together.  They were side-by-side, operating the same gun when an enemy mortar fire hit Donald, severing his left leg. Thirty seconds earlier they had switched places. 

With an emotionally chocked voice and tears, Charles told this horrific story.  He spoke with raw emotion, even after all these years, as he told how he had fought to go on the helicopter with his buddy only to be denied.  For the first time since enlisting, they were separated.

Thank you my friends, Donald and Charles for your service and for living the Biblical picture,  "a genuine or authentic friend sticks closer than a brother."  I love you both.

I heard this song yesterday and thought it so appropriate.

Sailor Jerri is a Navy Veteran from central Minnesota. 

Jerri started playing guitar and singing for the long term care at the VA, and in veteran support groups.  In April of 2017 she wrote and posted "Hallelujah Veterans Version" 

Monday, May 28, 2018

Falls and Mountains with Friends

Recapping our May trip.

The first leg of our trip was to visit friends who have recently moved to Northern Georgia.

We only had a day to explore this amazing part of the country so we took full advantage of it.

Our end of the day destination was the driving force for the whole day.  I'll tell you about that later.

We took the scenic route northward toward Clayton, Georgia which could be a bit harrowing at times.  These narrow roads wound along the mountains and many little lakes that make up this beautiful part of the country.

Our first stop was the Minnehaha Falls which is buried in a wide, steep-sided cove packed with rhododendron.

The trail to the falls is dirt and mud because of the recent rains. As we walked on the trail, we could hear the roaring of the falls. This growing sound adds to the excitement and peacefulness of this scenic area at the same time. 

About midway, you get a glimpse of the lower falls which adds to the anticipation of what you know is ahead.

All of a sudden you round a curve in the trail and there it is!

The 100-foot Minnehaha Falls is reported to be one of the most picturesque in Rabun County. It is a series of cascading falls. These falls are named for a fictional character in the epic poem "The Song of Hiawatha."

We just enjoyed sitting and listening to the sound of rushing water.

Is there anything more peaceful than feeling you are part of God's creation.

We were so hesitant to leave but we had somewhere to be.

18th Hole and Lodge in background
Our friend's son is general manager of a large private golf club near the town of Clayton.  It happened to be closed on this day so we had it all to ourselves.

The scenery from both the lower and upper decks was absolutely breathtaking.

Lower Deck

Although the view was spectacular, that was not the only reason we were there.

Upper Deck
 While we waited for the main event to begin, we shared a delicious picnic dinner on this upper deck and enjoyed each other's company.

Then the show began.

And then it was over.

Every sunset from now on will be measured by this spectacular display of color and cloud formations over the Blue Ridge Mountains, from the back deck of a lodge in Northern Georgia in the company of dear friends.  Thank you Jason!

The next morning we reluctantly left Randy and Cele for the next leg of our trip toward Indiana.

Just before leaving Georgia, in Dillard, we enjoyed a delicious breakfast prepared to every one of our specifications.


The owner of the Cupboard Cafe is the sister of a friend and she very highly recommended we stop here.  So, I recommend it highly to you as well.

We chose to take the scenic route through the Smokey Mountains toward Pigeon Forge.

We remembered this pretty stream along the road side just outside Cherokee, NC from our trip this way two years ago .

We were anxious to see if there were signs of the horrific fires in this area that occurred shortly after we were there.

Yes, there were signs such as this now bald mountain ridge and charred tree trucks, but for the most part, nature has done what it does best - recover.  

We never tire of seeing God's handiwork and again being reminded of the resilience and power of His creation.

Next time, I will share the rest of this trip in Indiana.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Magnolia Table Friday Fotos

Last Thursday, on our way to Austin for our granddaughter's graduation, we stopped by

Magnolia Table

in Waco.  We had anticipated being able to try a couple of the delectable items on the Menu.

We had watched the final show of "Fixer Upper" where Chip and Joanna converted an old, historical restaurant, and thought how fun it would be to try it out.  Especially since we would be driving right by it.

The parking lot was full, but we did manage to find a car leaving and pulled right in.  Another next to us left and of course another vehicle replaced it immediately.

Once we walked up to the building, we were met by greeters who informed us that if we were there to eat, and we were, it was too late - the kitchen could not take any more orders.

We thought we had left home plenty early enough to eat before they close at 3:00 p.m.

After a 5 hour drive, we did arrive at 1:30 p.m.

Not good enough.

They gave this information with regret and an offer of a cup of cold water.

Another couple was more disappointed than we because they had driven from Dallas just for lunch there.  They looked at each other with expressions that said,

"We drove down I-35 to be told we took our lives into our hands for nothing?!"

The greeter welcomed us to take pictures and use the restrooms and told us the "Take Out" was still open.  We just couldn't be seated.

False Advertising!  Maybe not, I suppose we could have chosen to eat our "Take Out" deli chicken croissant sandwiches at an outside table in the 95 degree heat instead of our car.

The "Take Out" counter is part of the Gift Shop and basically consists of deli sandwiches and salads from the coolers.  The floaters who work there are very friendly and we visited with a native Wacoian who told of the wonderful things the Gaines have done for Waco.

The renovation was very well done and it is a lovely place to have a meal - if you get there in time.

If you should plan to make the drive, Thursday - Saturday might require getting there before dawn.  But, weekdays are not quite as busy, or so they told us.

Another hint would be to check to make sure there isn't a big event going on.  Our visit coincided with the inaugural Silo District Marathon, hosted by Chip & Joanna Gaines.  There were over 6,000 runners.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

On & Off The Road Hodgepodge

We landed!  Well, actually we temporarily parked the car for a couple nights.

Our trip was wonderful and I can't wait to share it with you, but that will have to wait for another week or two as I just don't have enough time right now.

And there will be so much to talk about and so many pictures to edit between now and then.

Tomorrow, we will drive toward Austin for this special, beautiful young lady's graduation from the University of Texas.

1. What would you say is your biggest day to day challenge?

To make the most of each one. 

2. May 16th is National Biographers Day. What's a biography you really enjoyed reading? Is this a genre you read regularly?

This is not my favorite genre and don't really have a favorite.

3. How important is keeping a clean house? Do you need to de-clutter your life?

It is important to both of us that our house be clean, but it is especially crucial to me that it not be cluttered.  I don't consider my life cluttered - busy, yes, but not cluttered.

4. You're the 8th dwarf. What's your name?


5. What's surprised you the most about your life or life in general?

That 73 isn't old after all, and that I got here.
The fact that I am still married to a wonderful man and husband never ceases to amaze me.
That I get to be mother to two of the finest adult children I know, and grandmother to seven (7) intelligent, productive, beautiful, loving and giving grandchildren, will always be a marvel.
That I have lived to see so much end-time Bible prophecy revealed and unfolded has both blessed and surprised me.

6. Insert your own random thought here.


It was great being with our son's family to celebrate Mother's Day with them.  It was good to share this special day with our Daughter-in-Love as well.

Our daughter had three of her four daughters with her for Mother's Day.

Yes, I am a blessed Mama!