Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Taking a short leave

I really hate the thought of not posting for a while. But I guess we'll all survive. I'm assuming that I'll get to a computer at least once or twice while we're gone, but I'm not going to promise to get any posting done.

I do promise to keep a written journal with (GASP!) paper and pen. I've always done that, and I assume that it's a skill I haven't lost completely.

I went out to Vicki's for a bit this morning, and she gave me the check for the work that was sold at the Gallery Hop. Wow! Real money for our art-work. John says that maybe we're not amateurs any more.

We'll be leaving shortly to catch the shuttle to Atlanta, and then the flight to Prague. Y'all hold the fort while we're gone, and we'll be back in three weeks.

Today's photo is of roses in Shieldaig, Scotland.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Getting ready

Today was an almost normal Monday (whatever that might be).
After swimming, the Swim Team had a covered dish birthday/anniversary breakfast to celebrate three birthdays and two anniversaries. Great food and wonderful fellowship. It is always so wonderful to think of our swimming group and how unusual it is. Many of us had never met prior to the opening of the North River YMCA indoor pool six years ago. Almost immediately this group became not just exercise buddies, but real friends - always ready to step up when support is needed and to celebrate our great occasions. And it's not an exclusive group. We love welcoming newcomers, and they seldom stay "new" for long. What a treat it is to work-out with these friends every week.
I got the wash well underway before we headed out again - this time to play bridge. We each probably finished up in the middle for the afternoon. But at least we got enough good cards to keep us interested. It's mostly a good group of players.
Then the REAL work started. We finished up some leftovers for supper, and then got started on the packing. We've gotten everything into two bags to check, a backpack for John, a tote bag and a purse for me. I guess we'd better find a place to weigh the bags to be sure they're within the weight limits.
Vicki said that we had over 300 people come through the Gallery Saturday. We consider that a great success. I don't know exactly how much was sold, but I think each of the five artists sold at least one piece. How sweet is was!!!

Today's picture is the Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness, Scotland. I wonder what sort of castles we'll be seeing in the next few weeks.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The day after

Today was definitely a recovery day. Yesterday's Gallery Hop was long - from 2-9 p.m. I don't know the number we had going through Studio 2, but it was steady almost the entire time. Vicki was so pleased - she's wanted to have a "real" gallery with this type of show for at least as long as I've known her (20 years). Sales were made, too - not just mine.

The food we put out was a great success. We were so glad that Margaret decided to come and spend the day. She helped with the "hostessing" duties, and kept the food table replenished and in order. John helped out as sommelier and garbage-taker-outer - an interesting parlay.

I wore one of my new outfits, and it looked good (if I do say so myself). By the end of the day, my feet were killing me. I really hit the acetominophen when we got home (since drinking was not an option). I still had a little back stiffness this morning, but the feet and knees had recovered. Of course, sleeping until 9 a.m. (!!!!!) might have had something to do with it.

One of the best parts of the event was seeing so many friends from all our various activities - painting, swimming, knitting, photography, X-Tix, rowing. That really made it a special day.
Margaret went back home this morning. They're starting to plan for her 50th birthday party in October. We're finally getting serious about packing for the trip. It'll probably all be in the suitcases by tomorrow night. After bridge, of course.

Today's picture is another view from the Gallery Hop.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Gallery Hop

A very short entry tonight. The Gallery Hop was great!. We had folks streaming through all day long - for the whole seven hours. We were very glad that Margaret came - she was a great help.

The upshot is that we're home, exhausted, and my feet and knees are killing me. And I sold three paintings and one of John's framed photographs! It was good!!!
Today's photo is one of Margaret's of me in my new duds with some of my paintings.

Friday, September 07, 2007


Our friend, Dalton Roberts, is a Renaissance man. It's amazing the number of things he does, and does well. He has been a teacher, politician, mover and shaker, and now is a songwriter and philosopher. Click here to get to his web page.

His column in this morning's Chattanooga Times Free Press is entitled "Grandparents Influence Never Fades". He mentioned the fact that Former President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the Sunday after Labor Day as National Grandparents Day. And he wrote lovingly about his grandparents.

"The power of grandparents over successive generations is something to behold. As my sister says, the echo never ends," he wrote.

"The echo never ends." Think about that. Think about YOUR grandparents. What parts of them echo through you? What parts do you see echoing in YOUR children? YOUR grandchildren?

I see my grandmother in me. I see my mother in our daughters. And, oh, I do hope I can see us in our grandchildren.

"The echo never ends."

Today's picture is a rainbow at Aigas, Scotland.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Photo "phrustration" (sorry)

Thirty-five of the last 37 days have been 90* or above. Today was 85!!!!

Today was a Wal-Mart and Blue Tick lunch day. WM didn't take long today - obviously I didn't want to stock up with stuff right before we leave. Blue Tick was lots of laughs as always. What great, creative people they are!

We've been working on the photos in Picasa2 today. We've edited and I've deleted. I'm having a problem with deleting some Folders. I've tried to copy some photos from a Folder to an Album, but then when I want to delete the Folder (leaving those pictures in the Album), the "delete" command deletes all copies of the photo from anyplace it appears in the computer (including in the destop folder, My Computer). If anybody knows how to accomplish this, or can help me be more efficient with Picasa, I'd appreciate a comment or an e-mail.

Generally I really like Picasa, and find it very user-friendly. I have the feeling that I'm just being particularly dense about this, and that there's something very obvious that I'm missing. And I HATE it when that happens!

Some of our walls are looking really empty today. I literally took some paintings off the wall to hang at Studio 2 for the Gallery Hop. Two are fairly old, the third one I did this spring. They really do look good on the walls there. Wouldn't it be great if something actually sold!

Today's photo is of one of my small paintings ("Making Sunshine" 20x16, acrylic on canvas) that is on display at Studio 2.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


Quote for the day: I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~Anna Quindlen, "Enough Bookshelves," New York Times, 7 August 1991 (And I do think this is true of our children!)

We haven't been packing, but "assembling" stuff, and talking about what we're going to need to take. I usually tell John to tell me which suitcase we should take - and then I fill it up. John even went to get $20.00 from the ATM, just to practice using the machine. We even managed to squeeze the time for haircuts this morning.

The high today was 97 - thought this was over. However, when we left this morning, it was actually pleasant. One of those teaser mornings that lets you let your hopes up and think that fall is actually going to happen sometime. Saturday's high is predicted to be 93, and I have to be in "real" clothes all day.

I've been at Vicki's studio/gallery, getting ready for the big Chattanooga-wide Gallery Hop (2-9) on Saturday. I'll be one of the featured artists at Studio 2, so we were getting art work arranged and hung, and rearranging the furniture. Just pricing and making a list of my things is a chore. I hate to be that organized about my painting. If you're in the area on Saturday, come by to visit.

I love all the wonderful sculpture you can see on a river trip through a busy city. Today's photograph was taken from a riverboat along the River Clyde in Glasgow, Scotland.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Summer again

Well, summer is back again - high was 96 today, and prediction for 94 tomorrow, and no rain. I know we'll all be glad to see the end of this summer. And then we can complain about winter. It was ever thus......

It was a "Happy Feet" morning. I went for a pedicure. I know it's considered a luxury, and it surely does feel good. But, on the other hand, I really can't get at my feet to care for them properly. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!!!!

Vicki started her students on fall paintings this morning. There were two new students - one completely new, and one who has moved from the evening class to morning. It was nice to have some "new blood" and new ideas. It's always amazing to have a single, simple still life set up, and have every painter see and paint something different. We started the "hanging" for the Gallery Hop on Saturday. I have some more pieces to take from home tomorrow.

Today's photo is one of John doing "his thing", taking pictures of other tourists with their cameras, so they can all be in their picture. This is in front of the Kelvingrove Museum, Glasgow, Scotland

Monday, September 03, 2007

Words to live by

If we are always arriving and departing, it is also true that we are eternally anchored. One's destination is never a place but rather a new way of looking at things. Henry Miller (1891-1980 US novelist)

Don't you love this quote?!? It gives a whole new meaning to our travels - and is certainly true for us.
John's been poring over the books we have, and continues to find more good information. The more he looks, the more familiar he is with the maps and he's really getting a feel for how to get around in the cities. I hope it works as well when he sees the places in full three dimensions, as opposed to the flat map.
We did some more work on photo editing today, too. This is certainly easier on the computer than it was with slides, but it still is time consuming. At least we've learned that we don't have to do it all at one time.

Betty gave me some butternut squash on Friday, and suggested I use a souffle recipe from the current Southern Living magazine. I gave it a try, and we had some tonight. It's really quite good. Even John, the vegetable hater, liked it. He said it tasted sort of like pumpking pie filling, and that's not too far off. Not quite that sweet, and no cinnamon, though.

Today's picture is Reflections of Glasgow, Scotland.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Not the "Delete" button!!

They were promising us the temperatures would be more seasonable (upper 80s) now, but already we have forecasts for 95 and 96 this week. From what we read, temperatures in Prague are predicted to have highs in the 60s, lows in the 40s. I think I'm ready for that!

We did some work on the photographs in the laptop today. I almost did a bad thing. I thought I had moved some photos from one place to another, so I deleted the old folder. PANIC - when I found all of them gone! Obviously, I had just copied them, and when I deleted one folder, the photos were deleted from everywhere else on the computer. Uh-oh! I remembered that John had done a "restore" on the desktop, and was going to do that. But then I went to the recycle bin, and lo and behold, there they were! So I managed to get them back. Boy was that a relief. Now they are all safely copied to disc. We've started editing them, and then will make a couple more discs - then really delete them. Have to make room for the next batch of pictures!

The more we investigate, the more excited we're getting about the trip. This week I need to make copies of all the papers. I'll get the knitting, books, and painting stuff organized, too. Next the clothes.

We finished off the garlic-butter-shrimp tonight. I did add a bit of white wine to it, and that was surely a nice touch. Now to come up with something for tomorrow night.

Today's photo is early morning in the Tennessee River Gorge.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Football time

Today was an unusual Saturday - I left the house. First to the knit shop to get a supply of sock yarn to take on the trip. I'm sure I won't knit it all up, but yarn is like books. You have to take plenty, just in case. The thought of actually running out is horrible. I got some of the wool/bamboo blend, some wool/soy/chitin blend, and something new called Koigu that is 100% wool, and very soft. Going to the knit shop is always dangerous.

Then was the biggie! I went to two stores looking for some nice slacks. One had nothing in the size/color that I wanted. In the other, I actually tried on several pairs. This is a major event! I found one pair that was way on sale - had originally been $45.00, and I got it for $4.99. I also got a pair of nice navy blue slacks. This whole clothes thing is very out of character for me. I guess I can blame it all on Matt and Amanda for making me think about what to wear to the wedding.

It's football time in Tennessee and elsewhere. The best upset was little Appalachian State from the Southern Conference (UTC's conference) beating 5th ranked Michigan. It's going to be drunk out tonight in Boone, NC! John gave up and went to bed at 11:30 p.m. (way past his bedtime), with 9 minutes left in the game and UT behind by two touchdowns.

I don't intend this to be a recipe sharing space, but this recipe was in the paper this week. I fixed it for dinner tonight and it is SO easy, and SO good!

1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled & deveined
1-2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/4+ cup butter
2-3 tablespoons lemon juice

Hot cooked rice (Zatarain's rice pilaf is great with this)
In a large skillet, saute the shrimp and garlic in butter for 5 minutes or until shrimp turns pink. Add the lemon juice; heat through. Serve over the rice.

Today's picture is a reflection picture from Glasgow, Scotland.