What A Week!!!!

It was back to work today after a long three day weekend. Last week was a bit of a crazy sixty eight day week, well that’s what it seemed like anyway, and I definitely needed the extra time off. I am writing this in a bit of a fog because for some reason this day just kicked my butt. I think a very early night is in order. But first I just wanted to share a bit of last week with you.

We had some really cool mornings. The temperature a couple of mornings was only about 33 degrees F. A light frost covered a lot of areas. I brought my little tomato plant if for a couple of nights.
The days were clear and bright and sunny and just beautiful.

I told you last week that we had some exciting things going on at work. I work at a tourist attraction that happens to be home of America’s Largest Underground Lake. The Lost Sea. Shameless advertising ahead, http://www.thelostsea.com. Check it out if you get a chance. The lake is located 140 below the ground level and covers 4.5 acres. A cavern tour and boat ride is included in the tour. We have four boats that are used throughout the day. Last Monday we got a new boat. The last time new boats were brought into the cave was about thirty years ago. It is not an easy thing to do. We will be getting two now and two at the end of the year. These are large flat bottomed boats that hold about twenty people each.

Each boat weighs approximately two thousand pounds. They are brought in half at a time. The cave is very narrow and steep going down hill to get to the lake. Each boat half had to be taken in on a huge dolly pulled by a motorized Gator utility vehicle and then a tractor pulling against the weight of the boat to help slow the process. It was scary and exciting to be a part of something that doesn’t happen but about every thirty years. Our crew did an amazing job as well as the company that built the boats.

It is rather hard to see but if you look closely you can see the Gator in the front pulling the boat and then the tractor in the back slowing the boat as it went down the steep trails.

With all of the preparations getting the boat delivered and set up and everything I had a couple of really long days.

My Birthday and wedding anniversary was on Wednesday. Mark and I both had to work so we decided to celebrate later in the week. I did have Birthday lunch with the sisters.

I also had lunch with a couple of friends.

I took off an extra day on Friday and got my hair cut. Saturday was rainy and we visited my mother in law at the village.

A fairly lazy weekend which is what I needed after the crazy work week. And just like that it was back to work today.

Did you know that daisies start out with this little pink bud and even the petals are pink? Daisies are my favorite flower.

I hope you have a wonderful week. I will end with just a bit of cuteness.

These two. They fight over the chair and this old afghan I made about twenty five years ago. It looks like they have come to an agreement to share.

Always remember,

Love your day your way!!!!

Weekend Happenings

Hi friends and happy Sunday. How was your weekend? Why do weekends zoom by so fast? it seems like about fifteen minutes ago I was pulling my car into the garage and it was Friday evening and I had two glorious days ahead of me. Oh well. I’m happy to be here and to have a job and I am very happy and grateful for you if you are reading right now.

Saturday morning I was able to visit with my mother in law for a couple of hours. We still have to call the Assisted Living Village and set up a time and go to the front and have our temps taken etc etc. But things are getting better and at least I am able to visit face to face in her room with her. I took her some supplies and we had a great visit.

I was supposed to have lunch with a friend and she woke up not feeling too well so we postponed and I had a couple of hours to kill before picking up my groceries. I had been hearing about a new bakery on a farm in Sweetwater. Grain Bin Commodities. I figured this would be the perfect time to go and check it out. I had also seen on their FaceBook page that the gift shop they had there had everything 20% off.

The bakery is a little ways out of town on a farm. I hadn’t been in that area in years. It is such a beautiful farm. Cattle and fields of green with yellow wild flowers as far as the eye could see. The bakery itself is in a small house with the actual baking being done just behind the counter and cases full of the most delicious treats you have ever seen, smell or tasted. There are a few decor items for sale in this building but a large barn next door had lots of other items for sale. There are tables and chairs set up inside the bakery and on a patio connected to it as well. You can enjoy your treats and relax with this amazing view.

Lots of home decor and even Ice Cream and milk, chocolate and strawberry. People were coming in to buy the ice cream, they just started selling it a few weeks ago. It is made at a Mennonite community not far away and delivered to the bakery. I didn’t try the ice cream this time. I knew I had several stops before going home and it would melt. I will get some next time.

The family who owns and works the bakery are just about the nicest people you could ever meet. They love giving you samples of the goodies and telling you all about the food.

I bought a few of the cookies and cake pops. They were delicious. And of course I bought a few other things.

Look at this metal pail. I think I may put yarn in it.
You know how I love old spools. This one came with the jute and the scissors. I use this often to tie my bags of bread and treats that I make. I put this on the windowsill in the kitchen it will be so handy.
I just had to have this precious apron. It is very sturdy not just for cooking but for any project you might want to use it for. It has a pocket and it can be washed and dried easily.
I kept going back to this sign I just felt like I needed it in my kitchen. I do bake a lot of pies, all of my family loves pies. I bought it.
Just look at these beautiful fields.
I love this old truck and the scenery behind it.
The cows seem content.

After picking up my groceries I came home and put all the groceries away. I took the babies for a long walk and waited for hubs to come home. This was his weekend to work.

The Azaleas are blooming and they are beautiful!!! We have both pink and white blooming but for some reason the pink ones are really blooming more than the white. It’s that way here anyway.

The Irises are also blooming. These are really old. My mama had these planted at our house where I grew up. When she passed away I dug up several of them and moved them to my house. I have also given lots of them to my nieces so that they may have some of her flowers as well. They are very special. I transplanted them from the first place I planted them when I first moved to this house twenty years ago to a more sunny area in the backyard. Now they are thriving.

A huge Azalea bush on our driveway. This thing needs to be cut back but you really can’t tell it until it blooms and then it is so hard to cut it. I will wait until fall.

Sunday was a quiet day. I did some knitting, replanted a tomato plant I have on my deck, did laundry, read a good book, walked outside with the fur babies and took a ton of pictures. A good weekend overall. Now to gear up for the coming week. It’s my Birthday week and I will take an extra day off on Friday to celebrate with my husband. My actual Birthday is Wednesday but we both have to work those days. Did I ever tell you I got married on my Birthday? I did!!! So we have double celebrating to do.

How has your weekend been? Do you have a big week planned? I do have a big work week planned but I will tell you more about that at the end of the week and will have pictures and maybe a video.

Always remember,

Love your day your way!!!!

Sunday Sunshine

Happy Sunday friends. How has your weekend been? How was your week? As I always say this time of year work has been busy. Well I didn’t say it last year at this time because we were closed. Our numbers and sales are going great!!! Just not enough staff hired back to help accommodate everyone.

I had a mammogram last week and finally got the all is good letter on Thursday. Of course I knew if anything had shown up I would have heard within a day or two by phone call. I always feel like I am walking on eggshells until a few days have passed without a phone call. Every time my phone rang those first couple of days I would say a silent prayer before I looked at the screen. Please please don’t let it be the breast center.

I did have dinner on Friday evening with my friends Lorie and Emily and we had a great time eating and catching up. I so needed this time with these wonderful women after the very stressful week I had had. Hearing about their lives and sharing with them is the best therapy in the world.

National Siblings Day was yesterday and I will say right here and now, I have been so blessed to have had six brothers and sisters to grow up with. I can’t imagine my life any other way. Although we have lost three of our siblings and we miss them every single day we carry on and continue to love and care for each other with a love that is strong and fierce. There isn’t anything we wouldn’t do for each other. That is just what family does.

The sunshine this week has been absolutely beautiful. Trees are blooming. The Dogwood trees have bloomed out in many places and they are stunning. The temps have been great, most days near 80 degrees. Of course the pollen count has been really high and most people are walking around with red itchy eyes and runny noses. I have always been really lucky not to be plagued with allergies but my poor husband and a lot of my co-workers suffer greatly.

Pink Dogwood trees at my mother in law’s house.
Some of the Redbud’s are still hanging in.
This was taken at our house. We call these wild forest dogwoods because they grow wild in the edge of the woods.
I tried to capture just how the water on the lake this morning looked like shimmering diamonds. I don’t think I quite got it but you get the idea. It was beautiful.
I took this shot early Thursday morning. It looks like the moon has fallen into the lake.

We are currently on our way to nearby Athens to get my nephew Tyler a new phone. His ended in an unfortunate death yesterday. He has it picked out and he is on our plan so we have to add it on. I also have an ulterior motive of stopping at Hobby Lobby after we get the phone and some lunch. I am chilling in the back seat working on this blog post while Tyler and Mark are discussing trucks and truck tires. YUCK!!! We just passed Hobby Lobby and I realized they are closed on Sundays. Boo for me but happy for them to give their employees off all day on Sunday. I knew this but I had forgotten.

Tyler got his phone we had a quick lunch and are headed home. I think some time on the deck in the sunshine is needed this afternoon. I finished knitting a sock last night and started on the second one. I will work on that as well. Heck who am I kidding I will probably take a big nap. Isn’t that what Sundays are for.

How are you and how has your week and weekend been?

Always remember

Love your way your day!!!!

A Wild Wonderful Weekend!!!

Hello friends and happy Monday!!! How was your weekend. Mine was really good because it was extra long. I took Thursday and Friday off to get some extra things done around the house. I made sure to add some fun things in as well.

Thursday Mark and I had some cleaning up to do around the house. We planned to move some things to the basement that we weren’t using and work on tax prep to have our taxes ready to drop off next week. We didn’t get as much done as I had hoped but we had some good walks in the sunshine with the babies.

On Friday I went to Knoxville with my sister Sandy to do a little shopping. It has been almost a year since we have had a real shopping trip. We were so excited. We had a great time. We went to our usual favorites, TJ Maxx, Target, Marshalls, and Ulta.

I loved this wreath at TJ Maxx but I have many many Easter wreaths and certainly don’t need another one.
I loved this little cookie set especially the pastel colors. Did not buy because I am trying to be really conscious of what I bring into my house. I have to ask myself if I really need it.
O.K. This bunny is just too freaking cute. I passed him by and then I saw him again at Marshalls. Maybe this was a sign that I was supposed to have this bunny. But I was strong and resisted and marched myself right on by.

Saturday morning I got up kind of late for me. I was contemplating the day. I planned on doing nothing but lounging around with the fur babies on my lap. Maybe working on a couple of projects and that was about it. The sun was shining so bright like it was saying are you crazy you know you have to get out in this beautiful sunshine today. Come on Girl!!! Think about the steps you can get in today.

It was almost as if all the planets aligned when my nephew Tyler messaged me and said ” wonder what I can do today on this beautiful day?” I said ” well I have been thinking about taking a drive across the Cherohala Skyway do you want to come?” He said yes. We made plans for him to meet me at the house. I grabbed a quick breakfast and off we went.

A beautiful day to be on the Skyway, not a cloud in the sky.

First let me tell you about the Cherohala Skyway. The Cherohala Skyway is a 43-mile National Scenic Byway that connects Tellico Plains, Tennessee to Robbinsville, North Carolina. So half of the drive is in Tennessee and half of the drive is in North Carolina. I hate to tell you but the North Carolina roads are much nicer than the Tennessee side. There are some great spots where you can pull off the road and get some amazing photos. Of course the trees were really bare and not as beautiful as it is in the spring and fall but still a beauty all it’s own.

The National Forest Scenic Byways are roads that have been designated by the U.S. Forest Service as Scenic byways. The program was initiated in 1987.

First stop was Hooper Bald trail. It was at the very height of the Skyway, elevation 5,290 FT. There are several hikes you can do on Hooper Bald. We chose the one mile easy walk. I am at the early stages of working out so my stamina and leg muscles are not yet what they need to be for a longer hike. We made plans to come back and bring Mark and more supplies and do a longer hike. Plus Tyler was excited about bringing his friends back to the area for a longer hike.

A small flowing stream in the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest.

Hooper Bald trail is a very easy trail even though the first half mile is all uphill. You come out at a beautiful meadow with no trees and wind blowing gently. It’s just so peaceful. But there are several trails in this area you can do.

We traveled on. I wanted to stop at the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest. I knew there were a few hiking trails there that we could do. Joyce Kilmer is almost at the end of the Skyway coming from Tennessee. There are a couple of different hikes you can do at Joyce Kilmer although the easier trail was closed for trail repair. We did the longer one that was over two miles.

We then drove the 43 miles back over the skyway and stopped in Tellico Plains to get a late lunch.

A great day, I got to spend time with Tyler, it’s always interesting to hear the thoughts of an eighteen year old. I got lots of sunshine and steps in for the day. I had over 12,000 steps recorded for the day.

On Sunday I did the usual laundry, catching up on email, knitting, watching some TV and doing some baking for the upcoming week. And I was soooooo tired from the hike on Saturday.

But alas, 5:00 AM came quickly this morning and I had to return to work. Remember when I said a four day work week would be great? Well I change that to a three day work week. That would be really awesome!! It would give you lots of time to catch up around your house and have some fun too.

So how was your weekend? I hope you got to get out and enjoy the sunshine.

I almost forgot. Starting Wednesday I am adding a post called Wordless Wednesdays. You know how I love to take pictures and share them and this will be a way to just share photos and nothing else. Let me know what you think when you see the first post on Wednesday.

Have a wonderful week.

Always remember

Love your day your way!!