Sunday, December 27, 2020

December 27, 2020 Christmas

Christmas history. WE MADE IT!........ and by ourselves! without the kids and grands!  Although not what I had anticipated, or planned, and in spite of my moments of whining, "this whole year has been nothing more than an inconvenience for me".(Remember the song by The Oakridge Boys called "THE MOST INCONVENIENT CHRISTMAS?)  Christmas morning first presented itself with a blanket of fresh snow. A WHITE CHRISTMAS. It was beautiful and peaceful. 

Thoughts and memories of Christmas pasts ran through my head.....The kids, the wrappings, the cooking, the commotion, the excitement, the photos, all of it. And then there was........................... the brevity of the 24 hours. Oh to keep that Christmas spirit alive within us every single day.  The season has been a myriad of emotions, and truthfully, at times a challenge to be merry and bright. Without a doubt, the highlight of our day, was the ‘nooner-zoomer’. Our family has not been together since JUNE. The day will be remembered until we meet again.πŸ₯°πŸ˜˜πŸ˜. I think we all talked the entire time.........AT THE SAME TIME πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚


The month of December was celebrated by BIG birthdays.(our son, daughter-in-law, and son-in-law)


We attempted to photograph the "Christmas Star"(THE GREAT CONJUNCTION OF 2020), but clouds had other plans for us. Here is what I captured on Dec 18:

And then again on the night of Winter Solstice:

And then one last attempt on the 22nd! Shown below is Jupiter(and a few extra moons) and Saturn which appear to be drifting apart from the Great Conjunction. Actually the 2 planets are 456 million miles apart!

Ron and I decorated our home for Christmas, as though we would be receiving hundreds of guests😁.  We've set the tables.We baked, and eaten again and again, and again. We've watched seasonal classic movies, listened to carols, concerts, and orchestras play their familiar tunes, and drove by houses to peek at the lights. 

We've had Christmas. (Or did Christmas have us?) Christmas 2020 came and went. We applied the phrase "BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED". The stockings were hung. We dressed up with nowhere to go😘 We had an impromptu party for just the two of us. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡
"It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes, or bags! Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more!"~ Dr. Seuss
 #spreadJoy #choosehappiness #lifeisshortmakeitsweet #everydayisChristmas. "Peace on earth will come to stay, when we live Christmas every day." May peace be your gift at Christmas and your blessing all year through. And may the promise of a new year and "a thrill of hope" be food for your soul. 
It was not the most inconvenient Christmas. You see, the most inconvenient Christmas............ was the first.  Read the lyrics of the song from the Oak Ridge here πŸ‘‰THE MOST INCONVENIENT CHRISTMAS

Friday, December 11, 2020

December 11, 2020 The Hunt is Real #5 ...HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MOM AND DAD

Happy Anniversary to my Mom and Dad. Oh my.......... look at them. Beaming with excitement and happiness!

December 11, 1947 ~~ The wedding ceremony was a small, intimate one. Wade H Bryant, the Minister at First Baptist Church, officiated. They tied the knot on a Thursday afternoon!

The reception took place at my maternal Grandparents' home at 380 Highland Ave SW Roanoke, VA.  Pictured from left to right ☝ are: John Alexander Anderson Jr, Eva Kathryn Thomasson Anderson, Mary Lee Anderson Hamilton, and Carl Cannaday Hamilton. (*****The house still stands today. As a child, I spent much time here. PS. I still have the tablecloth that was adorning the table for their reception. The dining room(where the reception took place), was filled with walnut furniture. That same furniture has been lovingly used in our home, for many years. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡

There may have been other guests at their wedding/reception. My 'stash' of photos did not include many others. This much I know. Pictured from left to right ☝ are: Dad's twin brother, Walter Craig Hamilton and Flora Emily Blankenship (who married each other the following month, Jan 16, 1948), Kathleen Wright Atkinson(Mom's best friend from Jefferson High School)

On this day,☝πŸ’‘πŸ’– December 11, 1947, Mary Lee Anderson and Carl Cannaday Hamilton began their life together as Mr. and Mrs! My Dad was 30, worked at the US Post Office, and had been living with his parents at 316 Day Ave, Roanoke, Va.  My Mom was 20, worked at the the Clerk of  Courts office, and previously lived with her parents at 380 Highland Ave. Stories were often shared with me that "it was love at first sight". What a life they shared.......... almost 54 years of marriage. 

Today, I miss them both......... their presence, their smiles, and their love. They taught me how to be generous and to love unconditionally. They taught me invaluable life lessons about work, marriage, parenting, relationships, and life. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY YOU TWOToday, I honor both of them!

*************** In 2019, I began OUR pilgrimage of continuing the genealogy of my Mom and Dad, as well as Ron's. Thanks to my Uncle Craig, my Mom, my Mother-in-law, and my cousin Craig, much information is ready for me to 'do my thing'πŸ˜ƒ. While not being as swift as I thought I would be, I'm creeping along, and making progress! Below are the other blogs containing records, photos, and journeys thus far.................. The Hunt is Real!!!

The Hunt is Real #1 Hamilton Schoolhouse

The Hunt is Real #2 Clifton Forge, Va

The Hunt is Real #3 Highland Park

The Hunt is Real #4 Looney and Sinking Creek

Monday, November 23, 2020

November 23, 2020 Roanoke Mountain Hike


 It's THANKSGIVING WEEK! Happy Thanksgiving to all of my friends. What a year this has been. In spite of the unexpected, the bad, the ugly, and the fearful, I'm grateful for my health, my family, food, clothing, shelter and (for the most part) a positive attitude. In fact, maybe the only thing that I really need is more gratitude. Our usual Thanksgiving celebration with family isn't happening this year....................😒😒😒. After having a pity party of one, I decided that I needed to be THANKFUL......... no matter what! Ron and I made plans to enjoy each other's company, get a head start on the next holiday coming up, take life easy, and enjoy the moment! We cooked our turkey breast early, and hope to have enough left over for turkey sandwiches on Thursday. 

The weather was perfect for our 4 mile round-trip hike. The roads were clear, the views were breathtaking! There were several overlooks along the way.

The summit, was the perfect spot to have a snack before heading back down the mountain!

Roanoke Mountain has been closed to vehicles for several years. (There was a mudslide on the down side of the hike which made it impossible for cars to drive.) We parked our car at the Gum Spring Overlook, which is at the end of the Mill Mountain spur, before crossing over to the BRP. Roanoke Mountain has been a treasured spot for the Blue Ridge Marathons as well as photographing that gorgeous sunset! Roanoke Mountain Loop Road is best explained in this highlighted link! The day's temps were in 50's but the wind made it appear a bit chillier. 
Roanoke Mountain is a treasure. It is worth the trip! A 2015 blog written in October with all of the beautiful fall color is included here: Oct 26, 2015 Roanoke Mountain  HAPPY THANKSGIVING, YALL!
Enjoy the short video of of the view!



Tuesday, November 17, 2020

November 17, 2020 Leaves Be Gone

 "Be nice or leaf!" 

Fall .....the season began so innocently. A few burnt sienna tips on the leaves, then splashes of crimson and orange began to appear. Against the vivid Carolina blue sky, we cheered on the beginning of cooler temperatures. 

Century Park, Roanoke City Market 

First, the nut-hoarding squirrels appeared out of nowhere to start storing their winter food. We provided a stellar crop.😁, The acorns fell, sometimes sounding like a bb-gun. Our yard became a hard-hat area. We cautiously walked down our driveway to avoid 'FALL-ING'.   

"I think I'm falling for you. Orange you happy it's fall? You don't like the outdoors? Unbe-leaf-able."

Then, the annual leaf drop began mid-October. EVERY.SINGLE.DAY, we did our best to keep the driveway reasonably clear. By November 1st, our asphalt driveway was covered  DAILY.  BTW....... These 'beautiful fall leaves' πŸ‘‡ are slicker than ice, when it rains! 

Fast forward 2 weeks.............. a few leaves remain on the trees, but not many. 
"Don't leaf me hanging. Never leaf me. Make like a tree and leaf." 
Bending, stretching, twisting, turning........ we have raked, blown, and hauled leaves to the street and driveway.  It has been great exercise, an excellent way to get outside in the fresh air, and a good way to reduce stress while working in #FITBIT steps!  
I'm grateful for my health. 
I'm grateful for my better half, King Ron, who helped with this endeavor. 
I'm grateful that I was able to take on this project. 
I'm ESPECIALLY grateful for Advil, and a nice foaming bathtub soak.πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Sunday, November 8, 2020

November 8, 2020 Memorial Service for Carl Perdue

Never regret a day in your life. Good days bring happiness, bad days give experience, worst days give lessons, and the best days keep memories. Today we took a walk down memory lane, and paid our respects to a dear friend. 

Carl Perdue was not only an avid sailor, he was a master carpenter, and a long time friend.  The day began by having his sailboat brought to the t-dock at Virginia Inland Sailing Association. 

Carl's brother Mike (the one waving from the cabin) prepared a lovely ceremony and fitting tribute.
The family and a few close friends gathered on the deck while Mike gave Carl's eulogy, and presented a slide show honoring Carl.

Carl and his boat could be spotted on the lake, probably more than any other sail boat at SML.
Anyday, any temperature, any amount of wind, was a good day to be sailing.
Following the tribute, the family walked to a dock, where a plaque had been installed. 

We were honored to be among Carl' family and friends. 
Before the ceremony, Ron and I reminisced about the wonderful years that we spent here...... with our kids, boats, and camper.
VISA was our home away from home.
In fact........... this is where it all began!