Tuesday, September 30, 2008

An Awesome Redundancy

There is no better way to end a perfect day than watch a breathtaking sunset.

God pulls the covers over the Earth and tucks us in.

Goodnight everyone.

The Old Mill, Pigeon Forge

From this angle on the bridge, the Old Mill looks like it did in days gone by. But just around to the front of the building is a whole village of commercial gift and craft shops. The inside of the mill building is also a tourist trap. I loved this shot though.

It's a Thing about Frogs

Frog Friends gathering on the deck before our frog-themed dinner table in our matching Peace Frog "angel" Ts. We have the cutest Frog place mats, handmade for us by Barb (thanks again Barb!) for the occasion. Kyle matched the mats with the purchased pink flowers and picked the wild goldenrod from the landscape around the cabin. (Amazing how well he did that!)

Kelli brought the stuffed frog. He was one of Angie's. Even the Saturday Evening Post can Kyle found in the cabin to put that arrangement in had the right month/day date on it...September 20.
If you haven't guessed it yet, Angie was really into frogs. Not only that, she was a heck of a marketer. She took the frog theme and ingrained it so deeply in her persona that anyone who ever knew her will immediately think of her when a frog appears. It was part of her cuteness and playful spontaneity. She would have enjoyed us carrying on her frog theme in her honor.

We had a candle-lit (green of course) dinner of her favorite family meal, prime rib. I didn't get any pictures of the meal. We were too busy stuffing our faces!

Hi to Barb and Richard

Just a jump in here to say hello to my extended family, Barb and Richard, and my grandson, Nathaniel. I have followed Barb's blog for a while and I thank her for giving me the idea.
For you guys, a couple more pictures around our little neighborhood in Pigeon Forge.

It's a New Day in the Neighborhood

I love to get up early, two to three hours before work-thirty if possible. It's more than having the time to mentally clear out yesterday and start the day infused with copious amounts of caffein.
There's something magical about being up early enough to hear the first bird chirp. It's a time to communicate with God and get your direction for the day.

I couldn't miss this time in Pigeon Forge.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Mountains Majesty

That last post didn't turn out like I expected. In fact, I didn't even intend to post it yet. I guess there is more of a learning curve here than I first expected. Bare with me...there are pictures to share!

These from the main deck of the cabin. See how redundant they are?
Every time I walked out on that deck I thought I had to have a picture of that! The result of course is that I have lots of pictures of the same view at different times of the day. I chose this cabin for it's spectacular view. It emanates peace and tranquility and I can still feel the relief of it just looking at the pictures.

We stood there in awe of the view, four survivors, all in need of a healthy dose of peace and tranquility. There it was...ours for the weekend.

My cabin mates were two of Angie's best friends, Kelli and Kyle, and my friend, Gail, who also loves Angie.
We all have the love of Angie in common. We came here to celebrate her life, to share some of our best memories of her, to laugh, to continue our healing.... from the highest reaches possible. Mission accomplished.

We came here to escape our own daily routines, dramas, and grinds; to kick back, relax and enjoy this beautiful place together with no agenda. We spent a lot of time together, but if anyone wanted to escape to be alone to nap or to read, the cabin had three floors, each with a deck and this spectacular view. There was plenty of room to do our own thing.

I was in charge of cooking though, so they had to look me up several times a day at least! :)

I think this is my favorite view of these mountains. I watched every breath of this sunset. The fog rising from the valley floor seemed ethereal as the light slipped behind the peaks.
It was awesome.

I can see this will take a little longer than I'd expected. I'll share more in the days to come.


Weekend in Pigeon Forge, TN

Welcome to my first blog post! I decided to kick it off with our trip to the mountains for a much-needed sabbatical. But first, a little about me:

I am Judy, divorced mother of two, grandma of four, and an accountant by trade. I love to cook, from the simplest to the most elaborate gourmet offerings. If there is a delicious new recipe in town, I either have it...or I'm looking for it. In addition to the human family, there is also a family of dogs. Five pugs and a lone Pit Bull mix live here. I am a long-time member of Pug Rescue of NC, a 501(c)3 non-profit charity. I remain the western NC representative, and likely as not, there will be a new foster pug around to write about in addition to my own "fur" children.

The mountain get-away was a planned alternative to spending September 20 alone at home.
It was my daughter's 29th birthday, and she is no longer with us. On June 10, 2008, Angie was killed in a grinding car crash on her way to work. It's still very painful for me to type those words even though I have now accepted the finality of her death. Only time will lessen that pain, and it's still too new. Those of you who have lost a child know the personal devastation. Those who haven't... simply can't imagine the soul-wrenching grief.

But grief is not what this blog is about. Surviving it is. As of today, I have survived 109 days. I'm feeling a lot better. What "feeling better" means is that I survived in spite of myself. Getting well is yet a journey of many miles. Our trip to Pigeon Forge was good for several hundred of those miles.