Waiting on Wonderland....

Sun Rays through clouds no25612
According to the dictionary, Wonderland is a land or place full of wonderful things. I find myself waiting on Wonderland, wishing for a better world, hoping for a perfect peace, longing for lasting euphoria. But not everything can be ordered to specification. Not everything in this world is perfect and just.

Yet we must strive daily to reach that land full of all things bright and beautiful. We must keep the hope that a better day awaits us. We must believe in our dreams and reach for the stars. We need to keep our head up, our hopes alive and our faith firm.

One day, through the Grace of God, we will reach our own Wonderland. Oh the joy we shall behold when we enter that city. No more pain or sickness. No more grief or strife. Hearts will not be broken; tears will never fall.

Oh, yes, Wonderland is real. It exists. We call it heaven and it will be well worth the wait.


My Personal Top 10 "Bests"

I'm riding the Tuesday Train. Hop on board at The House on the Corner


Today I'm listing my top 10 "bests".

  1.  Best pizza I've ever had is one I grew up on. It was Gino's in Barboursville, WV. I have searched everywhere I go for an equivalent pizza and there is not one to be found. I have to have my Gino's every time I go back home to visit.
2.  Best ice cream sundaes are at Shoney's. The ice cream is so good and cold. It is plain, old-fashioned regular vanilla ice cream. Not french vanilla, not vanilla bean, not any kind of new fangled vanilla, just plain old vanilla ice cream. You can get it with hot fudge or regular chocolate syrup. Smothered in whip cream. It's the best out there.
3.  Best fountain drinks come from Pilot Convenience Stores. The newer ones have two options on ice. I personally love the little pellet shaped ice. They keep your drinks colder longer and don't melt as fast. You also get your choice on drinks. One fountain has Pepsi products and one fountain has Coke products. The best of both worlds.
 4.  Best place to shop for fashionable clothing for reasonable prices is Kohl's. They always have such gorgeous clothes to pick from and there is always a sale going on. If you collect your Kohl's cash and watch for coupons and go during the right sale, you can get some good deals. Best deal I ever got was a brand name skirt and top outfit that was $79.99 half off, then 30% off that. Then everything on that rack was marked down $10.00 off lowest price and I had a $5.00 coupon on my total order. Bottom line....the outfit cost me $12.99 plus tax. (This isn't the outfit, this is just something on my wish list).
5.  Best place to shop around online for vintage or handcrafted items is Etsy. I could spend days just going through their shops. It's easy to lose track of time when you are on Etsy. I usually have to have a scheduled time to go on there or I forget to go back to what I was doing.
6.  Best place to take grandchildren is anywhere you want to. They are so happy to be Mamaw and Papaw that they don't really care where you go or what you do. As long as they get to be with you, they are happy.
  7. Best chocolate cake icing is from my Mamaw's recipe. I'm pretty sure it came from the Hershey's Cocoa can only she modified it. I tried one day to make it from the Hershey can recipe and it was way too rich. Here it is for those of you who want to try it. It's a hit everywhere I take it. It is 1 box Confectioners Sugar, 5 tbsp Hershey's cocoa, 1 stick margarine or butter softened, 1 tsp vanilla, and 4-6 tbsp of milk. Adjust milk to get the icing to the consistency you wish.
8. Best restaurant to get potato skins is Applebee's. I love their potato skins and could eat them every day. They leave just enough potato in them that it doesn't overwhelm everything else. The cheese cooks up very well and is not majorly stringy. I always get double bacon and they load them down. Now, I've made myself crave them. Road trip!!
9. Best yarn store I've ever been in is Knit-n-Purl at 4999 Carolina Forest Blvd, Myrtle Beach, SC. They had such a wide variety of unique yarns. I don't even want to think about how much I spent on yarns that I still haven't decided what to do with. But the store is so beautiful and the people are so friendly that I just got lost in the moment and went yarn crazy...but I don't regret it.
10.  Best romantic dinner ever had with my hubby was in Panama City Beach, FL. We had been on a day trip to Shell Island and to watch the dolphins on Captain Anderson's ship. We went to Pineapple Willy's for supper and had ribs and chicken sitting out on the pier and watching the sun set into the ocean. Several years later we went there to eat and watch sun set again when my sister and her husband were with us and it was still just as awesome.


Up a country road.....

(Me in my high school years)

How I miss country life up that old country road. I miss the long evenings of catching lightning bugs with mason jars. I miss drawing hopscotch on the patio with a piece of chalk and going down in the driveway to get a rock to toss for the game.

(Me, Daddy, my sister Rachel)

 I miss the endless hours of playing jacks and jumping road. I miss playing marbles in the dirt in the driveway and running Matchbox cars down the concrete draining ditch Daddy put on the hill. I miss the end of summer when school starts and the evenings grow shorter. I miss hot chocolate after bath time, when the winter winds are howling outside. I miss cheeseburgers, Pepsi, barbeque Snyder's and Saps donuts for supper every Thursday. I miss playing Sorry and Mille Bornes and Monopoly for endless hours. I miss the board game sets Uncle Charlie would get us for Christmas. I miss jumping in leaves and the smell of them burning at the end of the evening. I miss hot dogs and marshmallows over the old charcoal grill.
(L-R: Me, my cousin Nancy sitting, sister Rachel standing and brother Jack)

 I miss Mommy sprinkling the clothes that came in from the line and tying them up in a tablecloth. She would put them in the refrigerator and then iron them the next day while we watch Pete and Gladys, I Love Lucy, and Hazel.

(Me and Rachel)

I miss me and my sister listening to those old 45's and dreaming about our boyfriends. I miss my brother's playing in the next room.
(Daddy, Jack, Rachel and Me) 

I miss long walks on Sunday up in the woods. I miss Sunday dinner with fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy and hot rolls. I miss chocolate cake and cold sliced peaches for dessert. I miss coming back from our Sunday walks and drinking a big tall glass of ice cold well water. Clean, clear and pure. There has never been anything to quinch the thirst like that old well water.

(Me and my baby brother, Andy)

I miss walking up town to Herald's Barber Shop with Daddy for his hair cut and I remember Herald teasing me and asking me if I wanted him to cut all those curls off (I had Shirley Temple hair when I was little.) I remember going with Daddy into Brady's Hardware and I remember their old paint stained hardwood floors that creaked when you walked.
(Rachel and me, the last year we got dolls for Christmas)

I miss so many things about that time, but the love is still there. The bonds are still as strong as they were in our childhood and the memories will forever keep us young.


Thoughts and prayers going out

Thoughts and prayers going out to all this morning that are being ravaged by Irene. Praying for your safety.
Our choir is practicing a special song for 9-11. I'll need to pack some tissues. The video to go with the words will be powerful.

I was going to keep three of the grandbabies last night, but it ended up being kids night at the local racetrack where their uncle races and I didn't want to keep them from that so I'll take them after Labor Day.
Can't believe Labor Day is coming up so fast. We will be decorating for fall before you know it. I'm going shopping with a friend on Labor Day. My Donna Sharp fall purse is on my wish list if they have it in stock.
One of my grandson's caught some kind of stomach virus. His mommy said he was a sick little boy last night. Hope he feels better today.
Got a call late yesterday afternoon to see if I could teach the 4-5 year olds in Children's Church. I love teaching that class. They are such a fun, interesting age. The theme is Thanking Jesus for the things He does for us. This one should be fun. I always get a kick out of what that age is thankful for.
Bought some adorable pink and purple variegated yarn yesterday. The granddaughters are going to fall in love with what it is going to be used for. They are both pink and purple lovers.
Isn't this butterfly beautiful. I thought it may be injured because it let me get so close, but as soon as I got my shot and walked away, he flew off just fine.
 On that note, I'm going to fly away as well. Need to get ready for church. Have a very blessed day today.


Welcome Weekend with a nature walk...

That just about says it all. It's been a long week...or seems like it to me. I feel like I've been chained to my desk most of the week. And when I wasn't at my desk, I was either running errands in the hot city or organizing closets. It's just been a full week.
I do not like going into the city. I hate the heat that comes up from the sidewalks. I don't like the traffic or the hubbub going on. I'm a country girl and always will be. But I spend so much time in "civilization" any more that I'm worried about losing my country roots. So I tested it earlier.

I took a break and walked out back to the river...barefoot...no shoes or flip flops...just me and Mother Nature. And I made it. No pain, no agony, no "ow-ow-ow". Just a normal walk as if my feet were fully sheathed.
 Apparently I wear too many flip flops. Checkout the tan lines. Oops, need a pedi tonight. Excuse the fading polish. My little old size 5 1/2's look like they are getting chubby. Can I call it swollen?
There appears to be a storm brewing so I walked down to the river. I think the French Broad River is one of the prettiest rivers I've ever seen. Especially when they have let water out of the lake to rise her to full tide. 
 Check out the cute little orange flowers that are growing out of the rock on the bank. Just one little plant. You never know what you will find when you search in nature.
 The wind started whipping up pretty good while I was down at the river.
 I could take a lawn chair and sit under the leaves of the willow tree for hours when the weather is like this. Of course, with there being a chance of lightning, a metal lawn chair....under a tree....during a storm? Maybe not one of my better ideas.
 Remember my flowers that I didn't plant this year, but they came up about a month or so ago. Well, not only do I have yellow ones, but I have a pink one as well. I'm not touching them for fear I'll kill them.

In a neighboring pot, a lone tomato plant sprung from nowhere. Tonight I saw 3 fuzzies little pods where it is getting ready to bloom. Who knew we had such green thumbs that we could grow without even planting!

I want to leave you with a very important message I received in an email the other day:

WARNING! If you receive an email from someone about meat coming in a can.....Don't open it....It's SPAM!  That one just cracked me up so I had to share it.

Love and happiness to you all for a great weekend!


Mystery Giveaway revealed......

Congratulations! We have a winner. And the winner is.......
Well, wait a minute, let's see what she has won.....

As I was trying to think of what I wanted to give as a giveaway, I remembered how everybody loved the giveaway of the Thirty-One Gift items. So I thought about this cute little mini organizing tote as the giveaway......
But then I also had a copy of this wonderful book that was so uplifting that I just wanted somebody to enjoy it as much as I did. So I thought about Fresh Brewed Life as the giveaway...
As I weighed the options, I thought "Why not both!" So I tucked the book inside the mini organizer and thought it made a cute little gift...
But then I thought, the poor little gift looks forlorn with just a tote and a book. So I thought, what would make a good addition to curling up with a book...I KNOW! A nice antique tea cup for those cool fall mornings when a cup of hot tea sounds so good.
And if you are going to have a cup of tea, you need an adorable teaspoon to stir it with.
Now, I am very satisfied with the gift and hope the winner will be, too.

So I guess you would like to know who the winner is? Well, using Random.org, we find that the winning number is .....

#4 is Julie.

Congratulations Julie. I will send you an email to get your address. What a great way to welcome you to my blog!


Mason Jar Madness

I am in awe of all the different ways people are decorating with mason jars. This cute bouquet with apples just looks so September"ish". I love it. Here are some other ways of using mason jars that has caught my attention.