About Me

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Tennessee, United States
Retired teacher living in East Tennessee, adjusting to life in the land of round door knobs. Photographer for our local animal shelter and foster of many dogs and kitties. Don't ask me how many dogs I have, but my son got me one of those "I'm the crazy dog lady" sweatshirts.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Monday, August 13, found us visiting Silvie, Morgane and Yolaine in France. Our friend, Mary, tagged along as we were going to be going to the annual art exhibition in Ruette, Belgium. We first went last year when I bought my chickens painting, which originally was going to be a gift, but is hanging in the hall outside my kitchen door! This trip, I was hoping Morgane would be willing to sell one of her paintings, and so it seemed. She was willing to let me have a very dreamy picture of a boat on a Scottish loch. She is leaving soon for a year as an exchange student in the States, where I am sure she will impress everyone with her many talents, which are not limited to art.
I was also enchanted with the illustrations by one of the other students in the school. Sylvie believes he will one day be a very well-known artist and suggested that purchasing one of his pieces now might be a good investment. I fell in love with this illustration, which he called "Potatoes" and the wonderful loving feeling it portrays between mama potato and her little one.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Windows with a view

The reason we don't have money this year for a fence in Tennessee is because we are having all new windows and external doors installed in our house in Germany. This is VERY EXPENSIVE. But, the old windows were metal (steel), big, clunky, ugly and some were starting to rust, which was causing damage to the walls. So, out, out damned spotty windows! Out with the old and in with beautiful, new white windows that are transforming the whole look and feel of the house. The job isn't done yet (four more windows and the front door to go), and the finishing work remains, so stuff is piled everywhere out of the way. You can see some of the mess through the French doors in the final photo. We had to sleep in the guest room for a couple of nights, but have since uncovered our bed and are sleeping comfortably. The first thing we do each morning is raise the rolladens so we can see our lovely windows!

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Summer Fun, Finally

Most of our vacation in the States was taken up with doctor's appointments and helping our son move, but we finally got away on a real vacation to Tennessee. We met up with our friend, Melody, her son Ivan and two of her grandsons at Dollywood where we had a funtastic day on the rides, watching a magic show and doing a little shopping. We especially enjoyed visiting with Ivan, a former student, and his two boys, ages 5 and 8 (I think). The park has several good roller coasters. We all about pooped in our panties on The Mystery Mine, which I'm glad I hadn't read up on, because the features of this ride came as quite a surprise.

We spent the next two days hiking around in Smokey Mountains National Park and walking in Gatlinburg. We also rode the kabinenbahn to Ober Gatlinburg. We also took a spin around the area where all the craftspeople have their shops and made enough purchases (a doll, a broom, some pottery, a basket, a table runner, etc. to fill a box to mail home). The weather was beautiful, warm, but not hot. We had a lovely cabin with a hot tub on the deck, a red heart-shaped jacuzzi and the most comfortable bed I've ever slept in. We got some well-deserved rest and relaxation before heading to Greenback, Tennessee and the home of our friends, Shirley and Heinz. We checked on our house in Maryville, did some minor repair work on the front steps (a couple of loose bricks) and cut back one plant which had aspirations of being Jack's beanstalk. It was aiming higher than Mother Nature meant for it to aim. I trimmed the sycamore tree, which was either suffering from a hard freeze or other cause. Hopefully, it will do better now. We also checked into fencing the yard, but discovered it would cost an arm and a leg, neither of which we have right now . . . but you'll read why in the next post. Here are Jim and Heinz horsing around at the Maryville library.