Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

October in Virginia

October 8-28, 2017                                                                          Most Recent Posts:
Charlottesville Virginia                                                                 Back in Virginia – A Carrie and Celia Meet Up
                                                                                                   A Spectacular Send Off From Schoodic Point

I’ve written many posts in the past seven years on Charlottesville and all the things to see and do here including Shenandoah National Park, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello and the University of Virginia.   You can find any or all of those by googling those terms using the search bar on the top left of the blog.

When we return here it’s mostly for medical appointments, to see friends and the big one, to see Carrie and Celia.  So most of my posts from here are about seeing them as our friends are tired of having their pictures taken and I don’t tend to carry my camera around everywhere like I do outside of Virginia.

All that said this post will have a few things that happened while we were in Virginia including a visit from Carrie and Celia.  I left out all the visits and meals with friends and  picked 3 things that are at least a little different from those we’ve done before.  


I went for a hike at the Ivy Creek Natural Area originally the farm of Hugh Carr a former slave.  You can find a previous post that tells all about Ivy Creek and its history here.   I  stayed for a presentation in the education building by local author Jennifer Ackerman on her new book The Genius of Birds.  My pictures of Jennifer were too blurry to use so I borrowed one from her web page. 


Her presentation was excellent with unbelievable examples of the genius of birds from the enormous amount of field research she did.  Her slides of bird photographs were outstanding. 



Jennifer Ackerman

Gordon3I also took a beginning calligraphy class at my beloved Gordon Avenue Library.  Libraries just have everything.  I’ve always loved calligraphy and beautiful handwriting in general.  The Instructor was a local calligrapher and the class was wonderful.  In fact the instructor was so good that I do think with regular practice, as in until it became rote, I could become proficient enough to suit me..  Just not sure where to fit that into my life around the hiking, kayaking, biking and all the rest. 





Our local absolutely stunning 1931 Paramount Theater does vintage movies at least twice a month and I walked on down there to watch Some Like It Hot with great performances from Marilyn Monroe, Joe E. Brown, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon.  I only had my phone so some of the pictures here are………well Galaxy S5.   Therefore these are a combination of ones from the Paramount website and mine.

Paramount Markee2paramount4Some like it hot1

Some Like it Hot

Some of the nearby restaurants were all decked out for Halloween.  Sal’s gets the “most creative” award.



I asked David to choose some pictures of what he did while we were in Virginia and laughingly he chose not play but projects.   I guess those are fun for him.

Well this first one was not so fun.  Seems wasps had decided inside the shop was a great place to build nests.  David not so much.  Gives me the creeps just to look at them swarming all over

IMG_0002Next in line to deal with is the toad lighting problem.  Last post I mentioned that we had to drive home from Maine separately because none of the lights on the back of Ruby were working when hooked up to tow.

The Blux Ox cord connecting the electric from Winnona to Ruby is of course  blue


The 4 wire flat harness had pulled loose from the Blue Ox Mounting.  Apparently water had gotten in the rubber boot, had  no where to drain and caused the wires to come loose. 

IMG_0008You can see the water line and the rust from water accumulating inside the boot and being unable to drain.  This seems to be a poor design.  Blue Ox of course has never heard of this problem though they did agree that it could be a problem and it might be a good idea to drill a small seep hole in the bottom of the boot.  That done square off the wire ends, restrip and clamp and it should be better than new.  Or at least it’s been working fine since this was done.

Getting things fixed is very satisfying but some things are more fun.  The granny smith apple, tree planted YEARS ago for Carrie since it is her favorite, had a bumper crop of apples.  Lots of folks were notified to come on and pick.  Carrie took a bag home with her from her visit and some of them ended up in pies.  YUM!   But there are still apples for the deer and whoever else wants a share.

All organic with a bit of cosmetic cedar apple rust.  Cedars grow in farm fields and it is absolutely impossible to keep them out so apples have rust on them.  A rag wipes it off.  No danger to health. 


We have views of Humpback Rocks on the Blue Ridge Parkway from the yard.   This one is zoomed in over the trees   We kept waiting and waiting for the usual Blue Ridge color display.  October has always been THE month and one of the reasons we hang out here then and do medical appointments but color was so late this year that we missed it.   Of course there is no climate change.


This crib is on its 3rd generation now that David put it back together and cleaned it up.  I used it, Carrie used it and now Celia is using it when she visits.

Winnona doesn’t spend her time in Virginia at the farm because there is a 3/4 mile driveway that is too rough for her and lined with trees that need trimming for her to drive through.  We’re never here long enough to make much headway on that but some was made this year.

Truck fulls of gravel are picked up by David’s antique 1986 Chevy S-10 pick up truck


Then it is spread and graded sections at a time.   A lot of work.


But at the end of the day there are beautiful sunsets over the Blue Ridge.


The very best thing we did of course was enjoy a visit from Carrie and Celia.  That’s up next.

Back in Virginia–A Carrie and Celia Meet Up

Saturday September 23, 2017                                                                Most Recent Posts:
Warrenton Virginia                                                                            A Spectacular Send Off From Schoodic Point
                                                                                                          Closing Out Our Time at Schoodic


Note: To John and Pam, please notice it isn’t summer any more, late September can November be far behind?

When we pack up from Seawall to leave Acadia we test our lights of course and find that Ruby’s back tail light is not working.  The problem is somewhere in the wiring.  We don’t have time to trouble shoot it since we are on a tight return to treatment schedule so we have to drive all the way back to Virginia separately.   But, these things happen.


20170909_143337It takes a full 4 days to travel from Acadia back to Charlottesville with stops at a Walmart in New Hampshire, a Walmart in New York and a Walmart in Pennsylvania for over nights on our 250-300 mile driving days.  Those who follow us know how I feel about that sort of thing but when you have to make clinic appointments, it can’t be helped.  Thank you Walmart for your hospitality.

We arrive exhausted and take a bit to recover and then move into doctor visits for all of us.  Actually Winnona doesn’t have any appointments.  Good for her.  David does figure out the wiring problem and fix it so we’re ready to go when we leave Virginia.


To celebrate the Fall Equinox Carrie and Celia and I visit Warrenton Virginia for an outing.  Carrie and I are clearly very happy to see each other.  Celia is cautiously happy with our exuberance.



We’re at Rady park and Celia loves the sound of her shoes as she crosses back and forth over the bridge.



She goes from one end to the other.  Stops, considers stepping down, decides against it, turns around and heads back to the other end of the bridge.  Repeat many many times.


Carrie gets her camera ready and encourages Celia.  “You can do it”.  



And with a wide step, she does.



She’s pretty pleased with herself and heads on down the path.


But things aren’t always to her liking.  I think this is the face her mother calls the “stink face”. It’s all I can do not to laugh.



She’s back up and headed down the path.  Time for some follow the leader.





She tries out the swings but seems more interested in watching Nana swing than in swinging herself.




But she does love to run through the fall leaves and across the grass.  Lots of room for her to safely venture out here.



Eventually we head into the town of Warrenton and have a bite to eat.  Neither of us it turns out took any pictures of our lunch

We leave the restaurant and stroll around the little town of Warrenton.   This is the “old section”.



Including the former jail which looks pretty nice now.  We didn’t take the tour.  Babies probably don’t care much for jails.



We do some window shopping on our way back to the car and this catches our eye. 



As does this great fire hydrant.  Well done Warrenton!


Back at the park we sit on the blanket and chat, make faces, try on sunglasses







Celia is a natural ham for the camera.





“Maybe I’ll just take that thing away from my Nana.”



While Carrie and I chat, Celia moves into her favorite pastime – picking up as many things as she can possibly hold in her arms and moving them from one place to the other. 


Of course it’s a problem when you have so many you can’t hold them all.  When one drops, like the keys, you have to figure out how to pick it up without losing any of the rest.  A serious and delicate endeavor.


Trying on Nana’s Oofos is fun.

                                 Tough walking in them though.



Back to her favorite bridge, this time with Nana’s water bottle in tow.  It’s important to be carrying something don’t cha know.



Too soon, off she goes and it’s time to say goodbye. 
But we’ll see them again soon when they come to visit again while we’re in Virginia.



They’re our Girls!
Can’t wait to see them again!!