Thursday, June 29, 2017

porch naps

I don't take many naps but I love a Sunday afternoon 
nap on the porch when the weather allows it.
It is so, so relaxing to be outside, I go right to sleep listening to the bird chatter.
The last time I had such a nap, I woke up and took 
pictures each direction with my phone showing my views from the couch.

We built our porch about the same time as a blogger did
who has the words "nap" and "porch" as her
blog title. She obviously knows a thing or two about naps on porches.
I'm hoping our old wicker will make it a few more years. All our porch
stuff was bought from here and there second (or third!) hand.

Monday, June 19, 2017


I've enjoy making chopped salad … kind of a new thing
I'm doing more and more often.
I've always heard you shouldn't cut lettuce with a knife, but so far the edges haven't 
turned brown. I even bought a cheap bowl that would layer well and show off the colors.
(You see our humidity has arrived -- condensation on the bowl!)
For this salad, I chopped all the lettuce (a variety including butter lettuce)
and kept it covered in the bowl in the frig.
I also cut the toppings up ahead of time and put them with paper towel
in individual sandwich baggies. If I had added them too early to the lettuce 
it probably would have gotten way too wet.
I let people put their own dressing on and sort of dig 
into the salad to choose what they wanted.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

alligators and more

The amazing live oaks! They make a lovely road canopy or wonderful shade along a river bank.

Such we experienced on a visit to a Charleston plantation this past weekend.
We hadn't been to Magnolia before and I do think it's my favorite for sure.
There is nature galore to see there, and on a tram ride through the swamps
I met more alligators than I'd like, but at least from a distance. I was amused
at the "ski ramps" they provide for these big lizards to regulate their body temperatures.
Of course the big house did not disappoint. 
A house that has been in the same family for 13 generations. 
I so enjoyed sitting on the huge, beautiful
porch and then touring every fully furnished room in the house. 
We even saw the 1930s "new" bathroom.
Can you imagine coming down stairs off the back porch and walking this path to the river
to welcome relatives and friends coming by boat from Charleston, or down from the north?
As an aside, I've been looking for a wide brimmed straw hat as I need to get 
serious about skin protection. We found one at the old market. This is a stretch for me
as I'm not a hat wearer. But as we walked around, I was so thankful to have it. 
AND, I was amused to see so many women in similar hats--men too. 
I was right in fashion. (I'm usually the last to know what the latest thing is!)
As an added bonus the weather was nicely warm but not humid. 
A gift of a day.


Monday, June 05, 2017

left behind

Everybody seems to be packing. At least in our neighborhood. In the last couple of months
four homes have sold in our cul de sac. Nothing bad going on, just the progression of life.
One neighbor had to go to a nursing home, another wanted a larger house for
their growing family, another graduated from seminary and is moving to the new job,
and yet another moved to be closer to family.
Three of our four new neighbors are very young couples.
(I see baby showers in the future.)
I lived in the house my father built from birth until we moved 700 miles away when I was sixteen.
And then for the next 20 years, I moved 21 times.
I got good at packing, decorating, and painting many, many rooms.
Good-byes were hard for me; change was hard for me, but always
ahead of me was the excitement of new things.
New adventures, new friends, new rooms to paint.
Along the way I collected many "old friends" who are still precious to me.

But I longed to put down roots. To feel really settled.
I've had my wish granted since we've moved only once
since that final one of the frequent moves.
We have history here. We're growing older with our friends.
But over the years, some of those good friends have moved away,
leaving a hole in our lives.

And so I've discovered that it's not easy to be the one left behind.
I watch as the moving van makes its last visible turn around the bend,
taking a family to its new life. I turn away, feeling an emptiness.
It's quiet where there was laughter. I miss the noise next door of children playing. 
The rhythms of living change.

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