Our wedding reception last month was held in Norfolk. The view of Portmouth from our hotel each morning. The view of Norfolk as we’re cruising on the Elizabeth River. Even a shipyard looks pretty in the right light.
The quiet before the storm that came later that day.
Summer has been busy here. We’ve had family visiting from other places, gone to visit family ourselves, and had a wedding reception. Most of that was within one month! It’s been a great summer! We took an opportunity when family was visiting to go with them to some of the sights nearby. One place we visited was Arlington Cemetary. The view of Washington, DC from Kennedy’s tomb is spectacular. We also went to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. And saw the changing of the guard. It was 95 degrees that day. Not including the heat index. There is someone guarding the tomb 24 hours a day / 7 days a week, rain, sleet, snow or sun. The qualifications for the assignment are intense and those that receive it, take it very seriously. We didn’t complain about the heat.
Via Colori is of my favorite events each year in Downtown Fredericksburg. They block off Sophia and Charlotte Streets and artists from around the area are given a section for a fee to draw with pastels on the pavement. The fees go to benefit The Grace Oughton Cancer Foundation. They have some excellent programs for families of pediatric cancer patients in the Fredericksburg area. I LOVE this event! I think the process is fascinating and the colors simply leap off the pavement. There are artists of every age. On of the featured artists, Iryna Hamill. The attention to detail is amazing. She was rather gleeful that her character looked “slightly off his rocker”. Art with a message. You can see some of the finished art on the Via Colori-Fredericksburg Facebook Page. With all of that creativity I didn’t even care that it was hot.
I spend my life surrounded by animals. With 3 labs, a couple of whom are around 100 lbs., it’s difficult not to be. Dogs everywhere. And when it starts to warm up for the summer one place you can find Jackson is lying on top of the vent. If his tongue is sticking out, then he’s really OUT! However, if the dogs then go to get up and get up too quickly, turn their head or ….. Whatever it is they do, then their tags will get stuck in the vent. Then they end up wearing the vent like giant bling. Sometimes they need to be rescued (like Maggie did here). Others, they figure it out on their own. We have come home to vents in strange locations.
Fredericksburg and the surrounding area saw some of the worst battles during The Civil War. The Civil War, like any war, is about more than one thing. It’s complicated and messy. At times brutal, others inspiring. There was good and bad on both sides. It was sad note in our history. The Wilderness Battlefield was the site of the beginning of General Grants Overland Campaign. Nearly 30,000 soldiers died during a battle that lasted 3 days and it led to another battle a few miles away at Spotsylvania Courthouse where another 30,000 would die. The Battle of Wilderness is the 4th deadliest battle of The Civil War. Whenever I visit it’s impossible not to imagine them walking across the fields And wonder how they felt.
Let’s say you decide for a “Falling Water” prompt you decide to take a picture of the local river. You even know where there’s a small waterfall. Perfect. And you have about 45 minutes between appointments, it’s plenty of time, because this spot is on the way. Of course, this means, you’re wearing your regular, everyday clothes and shoes. No problem. You’ll be fine, right? If you were me, you might make it down the hill, just fine. You’ll make it most of the way out on the rocks, just fine. But this is when that little voice pipes up and says something about how it’s NOT a good idea to take that next step and falling in the water. If you were me though, you’d ignore that voice. And slip and fall in the river. That voice is always right!
I don’t know about you, but one of our family’s all time favorite foods is the strawberry. I have waxed poetic about them before. Every year we start a countdown as we watch and wait for our local farms to open their pick your own fields. Last year we added a few little plants of our own and overwintered them. I wasn’t sure how they would do, but early indications are we will have quite a few this year. If we can keep the dogs from eating them, that is. And the countdown is over. Pick your own fields are opening up. Whoo hoo!! Time to go strawberry picking!
I headed out this week, not for a walkabout, but for a country drive. This area is also farm country and there are plenty of windy, twisty roads to simply drive. If you did, you might pass cows across from a gas station, horse farms, a winery, battlefields, George Washington’s Boyhood Home, one of the best places to get donuts in the state (they’re a-MAZ-zing!) annnnnnd….the mall. IF you were to do all of that driving, you might need some gas, but I wouldn’t trying stopping at any of these places. These really were around the bend and down the road aways.
We’re in week 11 of the 52 week Photochallenge from Tabitha. The prompt this week was “Books”. I had a few ideas and knew where I wanted to go for the challenge right away. However, as is typcally the case, it was the unexpected opportunity, that turned out to be my favorite photo. There are a lot of great book shops in downtown Fredericksburg. Funky places and each has a distinct vibe of their own. The Griffin is one of them. A neat place with a side patio. I did learn that the owner is retiring. So The Griffin may be going away. I’m hoping not. Down the road is another one of my favorites. Riverby Books. I love to wonder in and look at their used sheet music to see what’s there. The decor is inviting and makes me smile. In fact, it was as I was leaving Riverby that I turned and spotted this guy (I didn’t put him there.). He was just hangin’ out. Relaxin’ in the …