The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Friday, May 20, 2011

Some Vacation Highlights

          I had almost forgotten how beautiful East Tennessee is in the Spring.   The lush greenness of the landscape is vastly different from the urban sprawl of Los Angeles.  In 1966 my family moved into the house where my mother still lives.  Now after forty some years the trees in the yard have grown considerably.   I spent a good bit of time just strolling through the yard, enjoying the variety of birds, the squirrels, and rabbits. It felt like being in a park or a nature preserve.  There is a peacefulness in this place that I did not realize how much I have missed.

View of my mother's house from the backyard.


         One day my daughters, sons-in-law, and my granddaughters all rode up to Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains.   The national park is less than twenty miles from my mother's house.  We visited one of the old Baptist churches that dates from the early 1800s.  We also stopped by the Cable home site which includes a grist mill which still operates and produces corn meal sold to the tourists.  Two and a half year old Marley delighted in seeing wild turkeys, deer, and a large black bear as we drove around the scenic loop--we all did for that matter.

Two of my daughters, my son-in-law, and the two granddaughters in front of the  Cable Grist Mill.

         It was the family time that really made the difference though.   I had the opportunity to spend time with my youngest grandchild, Lillee, for the second time since she'd been born.  I'd seen her when she was first born, and a couple of times in video chat, but it was nice to be around her and to be able to hold her again.  I see my other granddaughter, Marley, more often, but I never tire of watching her learn and grow.  It seems strange being a grandparent, but it's a wonderful strange.  Four generations under one roof can make for a might joyous occasion.   I wish these times were more often.

Granddaughters Lillee and Marley--different parents, but they could pass for sisters.

           On the first leg of my flight to Tennessee, I briefly met a blogger by the name of Kristi Ryan who has a fine looking blog called A Chick, a Flick, and a Kitchen.   She talks about movies and food--two of my favorite subjects.   Check out her blog and let her know that you heard about it from Arlee at Tossing It Out.

          On Monday I will be continuing the Blogging from A to Z evaluation.  Please stop in and voice your thoughts.

           Do you have vacation plans for the upcoming summer?   Have you visited the Great Smoky Mountains?   Do you find yourself talking about blogging to total strangers sometimes?




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39 comments:

  1. Beautiful pixs and description, Arlee. Makes me miss my own kids and grandkids who live too far away.
    Our area of PA is experiencing that same lush green grass and foliage along with beautiful flowering bushes that you saw in TN. Spring just can't be matched!
    Thanks for sharing. Pam Williams

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  2. Lovely to spend time with family and most especially, grandchildren. I am so fortunate to have both mine here in the same city. Your photos are lovely.

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  3. Thank you for sharing your wonderful fasmily hoilday with us. What beautiful grandchildren you have. I love your mum's house.

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  4. Glad you had a good time. It's crappy when families live so far apart.

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  5. I live in North Carolina, so have been the the Smokey Mountains. I also lived in Denver a LONG time ago, and love the Rockies. We went to California last year on vacation (LA and San Francisco) and loved it. This year we are headed to the NC Beaches, Oak Island. For the first time we are letting our kids (18, 14, 11) each bring a friend. It should be fun!

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  6. I loved this post. The pics are precious and I am now homesick for my own beloved Idaho.. Currently I am 2 blocks away from Lk. Michigan, which, in and of itself is pretty awesome and breath taking but I do miss my mountains..

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  7. Beautiful pictures. Living in Arizona sometimes I forget the rest of the world is green. :)

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  8. Pleased you are enjoying Tennessee, the pics are wonderful.
    On the holiday front I am going next week first to Totonto then on to parts of the US, It's an organised tour so shouldn't get lost. Later in the year hope to visit my youngest son in Spain as it's been quite a while since I saw him. Hope to catch up with people whilst I'm away.

    Yvonne.

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  9. Hi Arlee .. wonderful to see the family together and having fun .. I just make the most of my time being with my mother - my time will come - and I've had plenty of wonderful trips in the past.

    Enjoy your time with the family and see you soon - cheers Hilary

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  10. I miss the smoky mountains. We use to go there every summer when I was a kid to visit. We would watch Unto These Hills. No matter how many times I saw it, each time was always just like the first. I envy your mother living so close!

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  11. sounds like you had some very pleasant time, Lee!
    The juniors are super charming :)

    I'm working this summer, new publisher tied me up with a bunch of books to work on before Autumn season.

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  12. Spend a lot of time in the Smokies when I was a kid. Been way too long since I've been back.

    Closest thing I'll have to a vacation in Tennessee this year is a weekend at the Killer Nashville Conference in August.

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  13. Glad you had a great vacation and safe return home. You have a lovely family. I been through the Great Smokies as a kid. Awesome scenery.

    And yes, I find myself talking about blogging to strangers at least a few times a week.

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  14. Lovely pictures! So happy for you ...you seem to be having the best of times :)

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  15. Thanks for sharing the pictures of your spacious house. 4 generations under a single roof, how wonderful!

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  16. Wow..it looks beautiful in Tennesse! Sounds like you had a wonderful time...I'm lucky in that my three sons and their families all live in the same town I do, so I get to see my grandsons all the time..it's still strange to be the grandma! Great pics Lee, beautiful family and beautiful place!

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  17. Hi, you've really pretty grandchildren..!
    Its nice to be spending time with family ya..
    Enjoy your time..

    Graywolfie
    http://graywolfie.andrewandgrace.net

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  18. Hi Lee,

    Yes, a beautiful family indeed. I am so glad you had a wonderful time together. There is something to be said about 'coming home'...how wonderful that your mother is still in your childhood home. I am happy to hear you were able to experience that peace.

    God's blessings to you!
    Trudy

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  19. What sweet photos of your family. It's nice to return to a place that holds special memories. And how lovely to spend time with your grandchildren.

    I'm not sure what we're doing this summer. We'll visit family on Long Island and Maine, but probably won't do a formal vacation. We're trying to buy a house, so we need to be frugal!

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  20. Adorable granddaughters! I'm glad you had such a wonderful vacation. I've never been to the Great Smoky Mountains, but it sounds wonderful! Maybe someday.

    I got back last Sunday from a week on Block Island, off the coast of Rhode Island. The island is a nature preserve and incredibly beautiful!

    Thanks for sharing highlights from your vacation!

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  21. I love the South! Glad you had fun!
    S.B. Niccum
    Author Website
    Blog

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  22. I'll just leave a general thank you for your comments as I am currently sitting in a hotel in Austin, TX and it's rather tedious to type at the present time.

    Thanks to all of you.

    Lee

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  23. We always go to Cape may, NJ for a week during the summer. (The beach house, owned by a relative, helps.) Plus, we'll go somewhere else for a week.

    I've never been to the Great Smoky Mountains. Perhaps we'll go there. :)

    And yes, I find myself talking about blogging to strangers. Sometimes, I give them one of my "blog cards," which is the name of my blog, an emblem, etc. on a business card. Is that too bold? LOL

    I enjoyed seeing your family; especially the cute granddaughters, and the scenes of your life.

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  24. This is lovely!

    No exciting plans for the summer, other than working and continuing the house renovation. Maybe if I'm lucky, I'll have some agent interest in my YA dystopian.

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  25. Three weeks from today I am in Fiji. Vacay of a lifetime with my wife. Should give me plenty to blog when I get back...if I come back...

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  26. Sounds wonderful; YOU have a wonderful family!~ I love the pics!
    My daughter and my nephew look more like brother n' sister, than my two. It is funny how that goes, sometimes!

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  27. AH, I have family around that same region, and love going there to visit them, too....
    Have a great trip!

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  28. That was such a beautiful post... Four generations is very cool...What fantastic memories... I love that area of the country... I look forward to becoming a grandparent...Your post made me smile!
    Enjoy your vacation...

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  29. Hi, Lee, I just got home to Texas from visiting in TN...of course, I miss it already again...but, like you, I had a joyous time there. I love the pics of your family and family home...I just read your analysis of the A to Z postings over the past few times, and found them quite good. (of course)..and yes, I do find myself telling people about my blog when I travel (or just when I meet someone who looks like they would enjoy it. :)
    Thank you for your faithfulness in bringing to our attention the blogs you find interesting. You and Alex are wonderful encouragers. Thank you. Love, Ruby

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  30. I'm glad you enjoyed a great family vacation. Your granddaughters are beautiful! Now I'm off to check out Kristi's blog :)

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  31. I love this post... wish you put up a better picture of me! Miss you!

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  32. Tennessee is gorgeous, but not nearly as beautiful as your granddaughters. What cuties!

    As far as talking to strangers about blogging, I tend to talk to strangers about pretty much anything and everything. I think the habit drives my hubby a little batty, because he's quieter, but I'm always ready to chat up a willing gabber. :O)

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  33. Those two do look like sisters!--they are absolutely adorable. I enjoyed reading this post--I could feel the love you have for your family the whole way through.

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  34. Sounds like you had a wonderful time Lee. You've got a beautiful family. Spending quality time together is a real blessing.

    I've been through the Great Smokey Mountains and they are magnificent.

    No vacation plans this year, and I guess if I link to my blogs on Facebook and Twitter I am talking about blogging on some level. :)

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  35. Thanks again for the comments.

    I will try to get back to some individual responses when I'm in a more comfortable place to do so.

    Lee

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  36. Looks like a wonderful time with your family. Your granddaughters are precious and I'm so glad that you were able to spend some time with them. Your Mom's place is beautiful!

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  37. I live in western Kentucky and we frequently visit Smoky Mountains. Gorgeous part of the country! Your family is beautiful, but I'm sure you're well aware of that!

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  38. Thanks Marguerite and Anon for your comments. I can't seem to get Tennessee off my mind now that I've come back to California. It's such a beautiful place. Guess I've got to figure a way to get my family together more often.

    Lee

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Lee