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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Evening Visitor

It's a stormy November evening, a lighting of the hearth, and sipping of hot cocoa type of affair.
However, not the kind of weather to keep a hungry Possum from partaking of a late night snack.

Moma Possum contentedly gets her fill


Next visitor, baby Possum
Aren't those toes adorable ?
(click photos to enlarge)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Through Bare Trees


"Through bare trees
I can see all the rickety lean-tos
and sheds, and the outhouse
with the half-moon on the door,
once modestly covered in
summer's greenery.

Through bare trees
I can watch the hawk
perched on a distant branch,
black silhouetted wings
shaking feathers and snow,
and so can its prey.

Through bare trees
I can be winter's innocence,
unashamed needfulness,
the thin and reaching limbs of a beggar,
longing to touch
but the hem of the sun."-

~ Lisa Lindsey, Bare Trees

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ain't Nothing But A Hound Dog

Yesterday, as most folks were busying themselves with the Black Friday pre-Christmas sales, my daughter, grandson and myself took a leisurely road trip.
Heading West, one hundred and sixty miles, towards Memphis with a mission in mind.


This part of Tennessee is abundant in Natural Wildlife Refuges, creeks, rivers and marsh land.
Mostly rural, and dotted with farms throughout.

Our trip took us through the historic Williamson County, Tennessee. An area steeped in history and known throughout the area as home to many of Nashville's Country Music stars.
Bucolic Williamson County is America's wealthiest county, dotted with manicured horse farms and mansions, with more guitar-shaped swimming pools per square mile than any other County.

The historic civil-war battle of Franklin Tennessee known as the Bloodiest Battle of which over 10,000 men died in a brutal 5 hour siege.


The Carnton Plantation was forever changed by the tragic events on November 30, 1864
- the monumental battle of Franklin.
It became the largest Confederate field hospital, and final resting place for 1481 soldiers.

Leipers Fork, a tiny woodsy community settled in the late 1790's by pioneering families.
Known as the true 'Little Mayberry'.


Finally arriving at our destination.

Situated not far out of town, "Miss Bossy Boots" ( my nickname for the GPS lady ), announced "Turn right ... arrived at destination."
A beautifully restored old farmhouse, complete with a tin roof, and home to this little fellow.
Meet "Bo" short for Bocephus, my grandson's new black and tan Coon Hound.
Six weeks old and raring to go !

The beginning of a new friendship, he's already got the howling down pat.
As Copper said in Disney's Fox and the Hound............
"Because I'm a hound dog...arooroorooroo!! "

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Ones Who Got Away


We have spent the better part of Thanksgiving Day, eating and enjoying the company of family and friends alike.

We celebrated the tradition, ate too much food, and far too much dessert, since today was also my granddaughter's nineteenth birthday and decadent pies and cakes were tempting us everywhere we looked.
In the midst of eating dinner, I looked out of the window, only to find a flock of thirty or more wild turkeys merrily gobbling away.

I dare say, they were secretly chuckling.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Countdown To Thanksgiving


Count your blessings instead of your crosses;
Count your gains instead of your losses.
Count your joys instead of your woes;
Count your friends instead of your foes.
Count your smiles instead of your tears;
Count your courage instead of your fears.
Count your full years instead of your lean;
Count your kind deeds instead of your mean.
Count your health instead of your wealth;
Count on God instead of yourself.

~Author Unknown

A Happy Thanksgiving from our home to yours .......

Monday, November 22, 2010

Gossamer Threads


"The milkweed pods are breaking,
And the bits of silken down
Float off upon the autumn breeze
Across the meadows brown."

~ Cecil Cavendish, The Milkweed

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Remember When


We met across an ocean , from distant lands, and different cultures.
You said tomato, I said tomahto, we embraced each others differences.
Barely old enough to date, yet young enough to serve in war.
Young parents we traveled through life together, made mistakes, made amends.
Forty years ago today, we pledged our troth " for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health " our lives had just begun.......

Happy Anniversary to my First Sergeant xx

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Desireable And Ginger

One year ago on a warm November evening, an unexpected visitor arrived.
A stranger, unfamiliar, and ginger, who made our pet-less household , once again whole.




You can read the story here : http://abritintn.blogspot.com/2009/11/feline-visitor.html

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Too Much R & R

I've spent close to two weeks laying around in bed, yesterday I returned to the doctor, only to be told the insurance company wouldn't authorize the MRI on my injured knee.
We have two health insurance policies, neither one wants to step up to the plate, and make the first commitment, and so I have to follow the six to eight week rule, of trying other approaches before they give the authorization.

What a load of cobblers.

On the bright side, it's given me the opportunity of making out my Christmas list, and checking it twice.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

November Days


"The melancholy days are come, the saddest of the year,
Of wailing winds, and naked woods, and meadows brown and sear."

~ William Cullen Bryant

Monday, November 15, 2010

Morning Mist


I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
Stand shadowless like silence, listening
To silence, for no lonely bird would sing
Into his hollow ear from woods forlorn,
Nor lowly hedge nor solitary thorn;—
Shaking his languid locks all dewy bright
With tangled gossamer that fell by night,
Pearling his coronet of golden corn.

~Thomas Hood : Autumn (1798-1845)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Give Me A Sign

I like signs.
They make me smile, remind me not to take life too seriously, and to care about what really matters.

In the potting shed


Above the kitchen telephone


In the potting shed


In the dining room


In the kitchen

Friday, November 12, 2010

Glorious Weather

The sun has shone all day, almost summertime weather. If I were to close my eyes, I would have thought it to be the middle of August.


The Oak leaves are finally taking their bow, show over.....

There is so much tidying to do around the garden, the bad knee just won't co-operate.

The little Carolina Wrens have taken to roosting nightly, in the old Robin's nest on the porch summer wreath.
I really feel bad about taking it down, so it may be adorned with Christmas lights this season.

Oliver has been busy hunting field mice. He insists on bringing them home to share his prize.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Lest We Forget


Remembrance Day – also known as Poppy Day, Armistice Day (the event it commemorates) or Veterans Day – is a day to commemorate the sacrifices of members of the armed forces and of civilians in times of war, specifically since the First World War.
It is observed on 11 November to recall the end of World War I on that date in 1918.Major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 with the German signing of the Armistice. The day was specifically dedicated by King George V, on 7 November 1919, to the observance of members of the armed forces who were killed during war.




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In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

In Flanders Fields ~ Lt.-Col. John McCrae (1872 - 1918)

Dedicated to all the brave men and women whose unselfish sacrifices and bravery shall never be forgotten. Thank You.

Video credit: Youtube/DJJetplane/ Music: Dropkick Murphys/The Green Fields of France.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Cosy Cottage

If you make your tea using a teapot, chances are you own a tea cosy.

A tea cosy is a cover for a teapot traditionally made of cloth or wool which is used to insulate the tea, keeping it warm while it brews.

Cloth tea cosies often have padded inserts, which can be removed and washed separately.
They are often available in matching sets with other items such as tablecloths, oven gloves and aprons.
Although the history of the tea cosy may begin when tea was introduced to Britain in the 1660s, the first documented use of a tea cosy in Britain was in 1867.

The quaint little cottage cosy, was given to me by my mum, on one of my visits home.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Holding On


'Tis the last rose of summer
Left blooming alone;
All her lovely companions
Are faded and gone;
No flower of her kindred,
No rosebud is nigh,
To reflect back her blushes,
To give sigh for sigh.

I'll not leave thee, thou lone one!
To pine on the stem;
Since the lovely are sleeping,
Go, sleep thou with them.
Thus kindly I scatter,
Thy leaves o'er the bed,
Where thy mates of the garden
Lie scentless and dead.

So soon may I follow,
When friendships decay,
From Love's shining circle
The gems drop away.
When true hearts lie withered
And fond ones are flown,
Oh! who would inhabit,
This bleak world alone?

~ The Last Rose of Summer: Thomas Moore 1805

Jack Frost Nipping At Your Nose ?

Growing up in England, one of the more popular traditions we enjoyed in autumn was the roasting of chestnuts.
Oftentimes, they were roasted in the fireplace, or in the traditional bonfires of Guy Fawkes night on November 5th.
The more convenient way however is to roast them in the oven.

When Roasting chestnuts, always start with fresh, blemish-free chestnuts.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Chestnuts must be prepared by slicing before cooking.
Beware, unsliced chestnuts can explode causing not only a safety hazard but a big mess to boot!

Using the tip of a sharp knife, carefully, cut a slit across the rounded side of your chestnut.
After slicing, arrange your chestnuts in a single layer on a shallow pan, such as a cookie sheet.
Bake at 375 degrees, for approximately 20 to 25 minutes, until the outer shell and the inner brown skin peels away from the nut easily.

Serve roasted chestnuts while still warm for best taste.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Autumn Meadow


Come, pensive Autumn, with thy clouds, and storms,
And falling leaves, and pastures lost to flowers;
A luscious charm hangs on thy faded forms,
More sweet than Summer in her loveliest hours,
Who, in her blooming uniform of green,
Delights with samely and continued joy:
But give me, Autumn, where thy hand hath been,
For there is wildness that can never cloy, -
The russet hue of fields left bare, and all
The tints of leaves and blossoms ere they fall.
In thy dull days of clouds a pleasure comes,
Wild music softens in thy hollow winds;
And in thy fading woods a beauty blooms,
That's more than dear to melancholy minds.

~To Autumn : John Clare

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Spirit Lifter


After my run of bad luck lately, I've desperately felt the need for a "lift"..

Upon opening my e-mail box this morning, there is was.....
An invitation to my favorite Antebellum home Watermelon Moon Farm, all gloriously decked out for it's Christmas Open House, and just begging visitors to enter through it's doors and step back in time.

Emily and Harold the most gracious proprietors, will no doubt be serving their specialty hors d' oeuvres and copious amounts of Spiced Tea.
The rooms will be brimming, with unique Christmas gifts all hand selected by Emily herself.

I have written about this gem in the countryside previously. It's historical home , cottage industry, working farm and bed and breakfast, are truly a delight for the soul. http://abritintn.blogspot.com/2009/02/awaiting-arrival-of-spring-and-visiting.html

I'm marking my calendar as I type. I may show up on crutches.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Autumn Joy


Purple Aster, the last of the perennial wildflowers in bloom.
Gracing the countryside with their heavenly colors, a treat for birds and bees alike.
A true Autumn Joy!


"I will be the gladdest thing under the sun!
I will touch a hundred flowers
And not pick one."
~ Edna St. Vincent Millay

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Time Out Dreaming

I'm confined to staying indoors, whilst the rest of the world is enjoying this .......

I've pulled out my favorite books, and spent the days idling away the time.
Dreaming and oohing and aahing.




Accompanied by my favorite reading companion, and indulging in lots of chocolate.

Such is the life of privilege

Monday, November 1, 2010

On Hold



The glorious Autumn weather is upon us. Sleeveless days and frost-laden nights.

I've so looked forward to this time of the year, chores to tend in the garden, and the cooperation of the weather, makes for perfect pottering days.
I've made a list, and I'm raring to go.

Serendipity however, has different plans. I've carelessly injured my knee, the doctor thinks an ACL sprain, so with orders of ice packs and magical potions from his trusty medicine bag, I've been ordered to chair sittin'.

"Fortune favours the brave" or not.