We spent Thanksgiving at my stepmother-in-law’s house in the Shenandoah Valley. Daniel’s dad grew up in this area, so he took my sister-in-law and I on a walk down to the river. The town was quiet, blanketed in fresh snow.
At about this point on the walk, I realized I couldn’t feel my toes.
They have a lovely dog I enjoyed petting while we waited for the turkey to finish cooking. Donna, the aforementioned stepmother-in-law, makes delicious brussels sprouts with bacon, which I greedily ate with a heaping mound of mashed potatoes.
In the beginning of July, Daniel and I headed out with friends from church to attend the annual congregational get together at the Episcopal campground that borders the George Washington National Forest. It’s taken me forever to get to posting these, because on the way there, our car broke down (RIP) and the rest of July was spent either car-less or in Florida to buy my grandparents’ car (thanks, Grandparents!).
I had a most relaxing time despite the stress of losing a vehicle. We played literary games, sang gospel songs in three parts, read on the covered porch, ate s’mores, and went on a very educational hike thanks to the presence of an ecologist and a former geology major. I fell in a creek, got bitten by a horsefly, and overheated a bit, but that’s part of the joy of summertime!
The weekend could not have been better.
I-64 boasts 2 lookouts between Waynesboro and Charlottesville. Since it’s a divided highway they’re only accessible going east from Waynesboro, so I have to wait until I have reason to head out that way to take in the view. This week I remembered to bring my camera along on a thrifting excursion, so I stopped at both lookouts on my way back home.
What a lovely fall day!
I asked the Century Link man who was stopped with me to take my photo. Thanks, Century Link man!
It’s days like these that make me fall in love with Virginia all over again. I’m lucky to live here.
Click on any image to see an enlarged version.
Taylor and I became fast friends this summer. She’s moving to Georgia at the end of the week and I wanted the chance to meet her husband, newly arrived from Wales, before they departed. I took the day off and we all took a trip to Skyline Drive.
We saw wildflowers galore, dozens of butterflies, bees harvesting nectar for Wildflower Honey, deer, a turkey, a groundhog, and panoramic mountain scenes. We even got the chance to stop in to the Visitor’s Center to purchase some memorabilia; while perusing the gift shop, we witnessed a Junior Ranger excitedly – and somewhat bashfully – getting sworn in. We clapped for the new ranger, exchanged group photos with a family parked at one of the overlooks, and marveled, once again, at the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains.
Earlier this year, my friend and her partner helped open a new coffee shop in downtown Scottsville. When she texted me Saturday to invite me to see musician Martha Bassett (and awesome upright bass player, Pat) at the shop, I jumped at the chance to finally visit Baine’s.
The shop is beautiful, with a freshly installed wooden counter top and custom bookshelves full of a broad assortment of texts on Virginia living, religion, and childhood. Scout made me an iced chai latte with almond milk (both the chai concentrate and the milk are made from scratch at Baine’s). It had a complex flavor – spicy, cold, and smooth – and was perfect as a subtle dessert drink with a chocolate chip cookie.
After we finished our drinks, my friend took us on a brief walking tour of Scottsville right as golden hour settled over the landscape. We headed down to the James River, then walked the levy path back to the downtown area.
After the show was over, we all walked over to the James River Brewery tasting room for local craft beer with the band.