Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Back home...

The road to Faith Hill - note all photos are clickable for a larger version

I arrived home late Saturday night and the trip was wonderful!

My trip to Eastern Kentucky was bittersweet, I was allowed wonderful bonding time with old friends and was lucky enough to make a few new friends. We were able to relax, eat and laugh (A LOT). I think I can speak for all of us and say that Lonnie was on our minds and memories of him held close to our hearts, he was missed a great deal.

On May 4, we attended a memorial service for him in the beautiful, old (now rarely used) log church.

The rest of the week we worked on a few of the projects Lonnie did not have the chance to complete including...
Finishing the last couple of rows of rat wire and mortar on the back and side of the bath house.

This is a project started last year - Lonnie wanted to see the concrete exterior of the bath house more in line with the log structures already on the premises (the manse, church and hospital). Lonnie's brother Wayne stepped in as our supervisor and led us to the finish. Included in the above photo are Anne, Wayne and Bobbie.

Another project was staining some of the new floor boards in the church to match the older boards. Anne took that project on by herself - with a little help from Lonnie's brother-in-law, George.

In addition to those projects, we worked on shoring up one side of the seats that were sagging in the shelter house.

As an added bonus, and thanks to generous donors in Michigan, we had an incredible amount of clothes and household items to sort through and get ready for a free rummage for the families that live in the hollow ('holler').

We made new friends...

And lasting memories (Anne and Amanda)

Lonnie added a beautiful pond behind his cabin last year, a couple of us sowed grass around the pond. It felt odd and wrong to be up there without him, but comforting at the same time.

I found this wonderful little butterfly up by his cabin.

It was a wonderful week with an abundance of smiles and many tears. We reconnected with quite a few people we met on previous trips and had a good balance of work and 'play' time. One afternoon several of us took off on 4-wheelers in search of polk salad - this is a weed, it grows wild and is cooked up similar to greens. It doesn't matter if your hunting for it or eating it - I only heard it called polk salad. Our 'chef' James boiled it up with hog jowl and it was a big hit. I am not a big fan of greens, but did eat my fair share of the fried polk stalks, they were delicious! And that hog jowl, fried up crisp - like bacon - oh man it is wonderful.

Come sit on the porch a spell and enjoy the sounds of rain on the tin roof - and maybe a little lightning and thunder...

I did get a bit of beading done, I worked on my BFAC doll. I hope to have her finished in a week or so. I still have 3 Bead Journal Project pages to complete. I have March and May worked out in my head - I just need to put beads to fabric. I really want to finish my doll first though.

Now my latest fascination (or obsession maybe...) - orbs. Have you ever seen/noticed them in your photos? I have captured them in photos on every trip I have taken to this area of Kentucky. Inside and outside the house, in the church as well - they are seemingly everywhere. Kinda creepy, but cool at the same time.

This is the room in which I slept - this photo was taken last year. I took additional photos in the room this year, and there were orbs again, but not so many this time.

If you want to see more of my photos with orbs - I have loaded them up at Flickr, take a peek.

And just one more thing if you can stand it - are you still with me?

I wanted to share a couple of photos of the precious little kitty, he grew SO much while I was away.

He's 4 weeks old today, is very curious and is now climbing out of his box or maybe rolling would be a better description - he's getting plenty of calories!

And mama is VERY alert when there is a knock at the door or a stranger (to her) in the house, I managed to snap a photo just as someone knocked.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sunshine:

Glad you're home safely and that you had a fab time. L O V E that Faith Hill place and must go with you sometime for a visit.

What's up with orbs - let's discuss soon.

Oh and one more thing - that kitten is WAY TOO CUTE! Do I note a bit of striping in that little grey face - looks like maybe a tabbie tom might have been involved???

Nighty night - TerTer

girl_gone_thread_wild said...

Welcome home chica! Orbs huh? I'm a HUGE fan of Ghost Hunters so chat about orbs is right up my alley!

Great trip, wonderful photos.. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about your trip, but admit I'm SEW glad you're back safe & sound. Missed ya!

xo, Monica :)

freebird said...

Glad you had a good and touching trip. Your kitty looks wonderful as does his mama.

Elsita said...

Oh my God!
Your little kitty is sooo adorable!!!
I want to hug him!
Elsita :)

Hélène H said...

Good to see you back, Grace !

Phyl said...

So glad you're back to blogging;I've missed you!Glad you had a great trip and love the ghostly "orbs"
in the pix.......that kitten is SO darling!Thanks for sharing your great photos!

Christina said...

Lovely to have you back again and just great that you shared some of your beautiful photos from this year's trip.

It was warming to know that you were able to hold a memorial service to your dear friend Lonnie in that beautiful church - a very fitting way to say a fond farewell.

Sorry to pour cold water on your orbs, but they are merely stray light, whether from your flash or the ambient light, bouncing between glass and your lens.


GraceBeading said...

Hi all... thanks for stopping by and leaving a note.

TerTer, I think you may be correct about the tom. Good to see you here, we'll catch up soon (maybe in the morning?).

Monica - I'm lovin' the orbs, not sure what I believe just yet - but it sure is neat to read about them and to see them on others photos.

Christina - no worries about the cold water, I promise.

I take hundreds of photos every month in many different situations and places. This is the only place I have had orbs show up in my photos. Many of which were taken outside without any glass in the vicinity. Because of that and a couple of other reasons I don't believe the stray light theory. I'm not sure I've yet come to a conclusion about what I believe they are, but I am having fun in the process of trying to decide :-)

I'm so glad everyone is enjoying the kitten. He is such a little treasure. I can sit and watch him for a few minutes and know I will laugh.

Pursuing Art... said...

Your trip and pictures sound wonderful! It looks so peaceful there!

I'm glad that you were able to be with friends, relax, eat and laugh (A Lot). I understand bittersweet! To say that he was on your mind and memories held close to your hearts and was missed a great deal...I understand that and know how it feels! I like to think Lonnie was there with you all Grace...he is definitely in all your hearts! What a tribute to him to have a memorial in that beautiful log church...that must have been a special time.

You all did wonderful work while you were there in his honor. Did he own this property, caretaker of it, or just an instrumental person there? I love the donations for the families that live in the hollow! Wow, how wonderful! I listen to country music and it reminds me of the song...Deeper than the Holler by Randy Travis! Do you know it? "My love is deeper than the holler...(never mind, I don't have a song voice) but I wish I was blessed with one ~ because I love music, lyrics, and singing! Google it (here I go again telling friends to Google something) I bet you've heard it! Your heart must feel warm in helping see some of these projects through. And, the puppy is adorable! Boxer? Is the bigger puppy his father?

Lonnie's cabin and pond are beautiful! I think it is wonderful that you sowed grass around the pond. I think he would be so happy and love that you did! And the BEAUTIFUL blue butterfly by his cabin...hmmmmm...maybe he was trying to show you the beauty in you being there!

The polk salad sounds wonderful and I enjoyed listening to the sounds of the rain on the tin roof. It sounds so peaceful!

I'm glad you had a chance to get a little beading done. I take some of my work with me too on trips and am glad to get a little done but it never seems like enough. Hard to squeeze in "our" time when away!

Hmmmm....orbs! I read your post and comments and went and looked at your other pix on Flickr! I have my own opinion on these. Doesn't seem there is glass in all your pix or a flash in all of them either. I believe that they could be spirits still living there...happy spirits! Spirits that just weren't ready to go or got to stay where they loved. How the spots show up in pictures, I don't know. But I believe there are ghosts, spirits, UFO's, the Lochness monster, the Bermuda Triangle, crop circles, the stones at Easter Island, etc., and lots of unexplained things. I think there is more going on than we have figured out or understand in this universe or honestly will admit to. I don't think people are making these things up that they see or can't explain! At least they must be happy spirits Grace, they are not locking the doors on you or slamming doors!!!? Mark and I are fascinated with this topic and all the shows about them!

And, I can stand it...and I am still with you! It's a he?!! Have you named him yet? He is darling!!! He has beautiful blue eyes and I wonder if they'll turn gold like Heidi's. Man, is she a good mama! I love all the pictures with her arms wrapped around him! Melts my heart!

I loved this post and your pictures as always!!! Come by and visit soon! I took pictures that look awfully familiar to a few of your pix in Flickr...I think maybe you'll enjoy reminiscing! ;-)) Plus, I'm dying to know if you've been where we went!

I haven't posted yet, maybe in a couple more days! I need to go through 550 pix, delete, rotate, etc., before I pick which shots to share and even post my thoughts! And I have been on this computer trying to catch up with e-mail, perusing around and visiting, etc., for hours!!! My buns, again, are numb! :)

A big hug to you and glad you are home safe! Talk to you to you soon,


P.S. This is the longest comment I have ever made! I should have e-mailed you a note, as I have been thinking about you anyway!

Pursuing Art... said...

P.S.S. The beautiful oak tree picture you took in Concord is very close to where my oldest son, Blake lives right now. He lives in El Cerrito! And we know friends that live in Danville! Sounds like your old stomping ground! ;-)

Leaves of Grass

This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body - Walt Whitman