It’s Spring. And I’m starting to feel alive again.
Perhaps you’ve heard of the depression that ails certain people when the depths of winter befalls us. It’s called Seasonal Affective Disorder, or more appropriately termed, SAD. A few years ago I started tracking when my own symptoms start and stop. Turns out I meet pretty much every criteria for the diagnosis of SAD. Some day I hope to relocate to a place where the sun warms it year-round. I need sunlight. And heat.
Summer makes me happy.
It’s just easy. Less clothing, less laundry. No clunky coats to hunt down and keep track of. Shoes don’t hurt my feet anymore because I’m wearing flip-flops, which I’d wear year-round if I could. No more getting up ½ hour earlier to pre-crank and de-ice my car. Oh and if your car is anything like mine, the doors often freeze shut so I have to play ice-melt detective before I’m able to even climb in and crank it. Once-barren tree limbs look stunning with their brand-spanking-new green growth. It seems every piece of our surroundings breathes new life.
We’ll see our neighbors again for cookouts and socializing. Before long our pool will be open and weekends will be full of love, laughter and longer days… the songs of frogs and insects will ring late into the sultry hot nights. Fresh avocados, strawberries and tomatoes will be abundant for outdoor enjoyment. And the colors, the colors, the beautiful colors.
Heat. Pure bliss. It’s coming. Wait for it.
Old mama bear is waking up from her long winter’s hibernation. And the weather outside… well, it’s just perfect.
My, how I’ve missed my little weblog. The last time I posted, Keith had hit a deer with his truck. He thankfully escaped injury to his self, but his truck (and the deer) was a hot mess.
What I failed to mention was the very next day was to be our 5th annual New Years beach trip. I was honestly ready to cancel any out of town plans at this point, but he seemed intent on going and rented an SUV so that we could still accommodate Mojo. Our first full day there, a small tornado touched down and ripped the roof smack off our condo. I was sitting on the couch against the wall and actually felt myself being lifted when it hit. Soon after, we discovered a large piece of the roof missed hitting our rental car by mere feet. Although it doesn’t show the extent of the damage from everything that fell (roof lights, concrete bags, etc.) here’s a photo of the aftermath.
Parts of the roof are visible on top of the adjacent restaurant and under the palms on the asphalt. Keith had just walked Mojo in this same area 10 minutes prior to it happening. What is it they say again about those silver linings?
Aside from a lot of cleanup noise including chainsaws, a crane and lots of workerbees – the rest of the trip was awesome. One of my favorite memories would be our farewell balloons. We each assigned a few private hells from our past, then sent them out to sea forever. The picture’s pretty poor, but believe me when I say it’s very therapeutic to watch these babies go until you can’t see them anymore. Then they’re just… gone.
I so enjoy watching the souls of the surfers… had to share this shot.
Flash forward to now. Other than a few sushi dinners, a winter storm, watching my fellow southerners make national news with their stupid driving, a dog that wouldn’t allow us to build a snowman, an extreme gum-popper at work, a few dozen Twilight movie reruns, a couple nice unplanned car repairs and vet visits, and a sick husband diagnosed with pneumonia at the urgent care today – life has been pretty typical since the first of the year. Aside from the temporary pneumonia bit, we’re still on our honeymoon and we don’t see that ending anytime in the near future. 😀 But I’ve definitely got my nurse Bon hat on, the poor guy.
Have I mentioned I’m stoked for full-time flip-flop wear again?
I’ve already grown weary of winter. Winter months are hard, and those who know me already know I’m not a fan of anything difficult.
If you’re still reading this, you’re probably aware that this will be a rant post. Hey, we all need one now and then. With that said, I’ll proceed to touch on a few of the reasons why I
abhor hate dislike the season.
- All the extra required clothing, resulting in more laundry. Additionally, more clothes give the illusion of more pounds. Hate.
- I must wear socks. I hate socks. More importantly, my feet hate socks. And any accompanying enclosed shoes.
- Staying up longer at night to make sure that last log is in fact extinguished results in Bon getting less sleep. This is not a good thing.
- Everything looks bare naked and dead. That’s because it is. For several months.
- My car is happy in cool weather – but hates freezing temperatures. It’s not unusual for my key locks and/or door jams to freeze, resulting in me being late for work.
- Lotion up. Now, lotion up once more. Wait, we’re not done here – dammit the lotion bottle’s empty again.
- Dear Sun, how I adore thee. But alas, our time together seems to have been cut in half. I am pale. I mean like Edward Cullen pale. The forecast calls for even more pale.
When torrential rain gets thrown into the mix (over three-inches-expected-in-one-day torrential) it turns from aggravating to disastrous. Like when you let your puppy out to poo and he decides to find a hidden spot in the yard to dig while in said torrential rain.
Yep, I’ll be late for work again.
This picture was taken after a harrowing storm in the Philippines over the summer. The image packed a big punch with me, so I thought I’d update the wording and share with all of you.
The original was posted via Twitter back in August by this fine gentleman/rescuer – God bless him. 🙂
I’ve had my eye on the big tree right outside my work for almost a month now, since history has taught me it’s the first to bloom. It wasn’t until yesterday morning that I noticed it was now nearing blossom stage… the buds are no more.
Silly me. I blinked and missed it.
I can hardly wait for Spring. The daffodils have already busted out in full bloom and the pink cherry trees are so colorful – but I know there’s still a couple to several weeks before we see further promise of Spring being here to stay. At least the new season is within our sight now, and that’s all that matters.
If I had to pick my favorite thing about warm weather, it would be flip-flops. I can never have enough pairs, and the possibilities are endless. For me it’s not about style (though I’ll never turn down a pair of cute ones), it’s about comfort. From November through March my feet literally feel caged. If it were possible to wear flip-flops 365 days a year, I absolutely would.
My second favorite thing is daylight savings time – just three more weekends and we’ll get our longer days back! Yesterday I saw the most beautiful sunrise. As I crossed the bridge, it lit the lake up a beautiful pink, like the cherry trees. Day by day, minute by minute, we’re stretching our daylight back out… for this and for the beauty of Spring, I’m thankful.
We finally made the trip up to Asheville this weekend to visit Biltmore Estate, the largest private residence in America. The mansion itself boggled my mind. It’s still hard for me to come to grips with the sheer magnitude of this place – especially coming from the era in which it was built. Once we cleared the forest and the estate came into full view, that was it – I was officially mesmerized.
Photography is only permitted outside of the house, otherwise I would have some fabulous pictures to share. To me the tour was eerily amazing. I use the word eerie because as I walked through this huge mansion, it’s almost like I could still feel the presence of the Vanderbilts who lived here. I couldn’t help but place myself back in that time, when everything seemed so much simpler – although this most brilliant architecture is anything but simple. I found myself wondering what a normal day consisted of for Mrs. Vanderbilt – what she did after she woke, what she ate for lunch, what she did during the day in that big house, what rooms were her favorites. As I walked through the lush gardens, I imagined her there admiring the beautiful roses. I thought of the grief she must have felt when her husband died unexpectedly leaving her with a young daughter. Walking through the basement in the servants quarters, I imagined the young servants and what their lives might have been like. As we continued to climb stairs, gaining story after story, the long hallways brought to mind their only daughter Cornelia and how it must have been to grow up in a house like this. An image formed of the little girl running down one of the many long hallways and bounding into the endless amount of rooms. I wondered if she’d ever gotten lost in there. These ‘thoughts’ still run rampant in my head – I now realize a visit here lingers with you long after you’ve left the estate.
After touring the house and gardens, we ventured over to the village and winery, and even happened upon a Tiffany Lamp gallery. I was very happy for the opportunity to see all these gorgeous lamps in person. It reminded me of an art gallery because everyone was so silent except for whispers. Again, cameras weren’t allowed in there because they want you to visit in person. My mom has wanted one of these lamps for so long, I’d love to be the person to get her one someday.
Since the leaves are so beautiful this time of year, we decided to drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway for a leisurely ride over to Grandfather Mountain. The weather couldn’t have been better, and the scenic views were breathtaking – it was a lot to take in.
We’ve taken tons of pictures at the above overlook. I like it best because it comes complete with views on both sides – across the road is a beautiful field with a tremendous view of it’s own. It would be a great spot to picnic.
I love the mountains. I learn something new every time I visit – but this particular trip will probably hold the record for a long time to come.
This morning I drove past my favorite bull in the misty morning field, and noticed a little calf with exactly the same coloring he has. I just had to smile. The slightest hint of autumn air whisked past me – I’d recognize this transition even if I weren’t conscious of the coming season change. I don’t mind autumn, really I don’t – I think of it as an end-of-summer reward at it’s best. At last, we will have bearable temperatures, cool nights, and gorgeous colors everywhere. I can even go hiking again. I’m just not fond of what comes next – bare trees, blustery cold mornings of devoting an extra fifteen minutes to defrost the car, the careful layering of our clothing to keep warm. I sleep about twice as much in the winter, hibernating like a bear. A cute little mama bear, that is. 🙂
Lucky for us, we have the current friendly neighborhood hurricane season to take our minds off those imminent winter days and nights! Oh, yay. Katia looks to be the next big boy coming our way. Incidentally, my daughter sails off from Tampa on Sunday for a seven-day cruise. She’ll be hitting some optimal ports – Cozumel, Belize, Isla Roatan Honduras and Grand Caymen. Tonight we’re taking her out to dinner bon-voyage style at our favorite Japanese hibachi restaurant. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit nervous about the weather for her. I know it’s to be expected, though…
Because that’s how September rolls.
Although I appreciate most genres of music, I’ll admit I’ve grown into a country music kinda girl. My thanks to Keith who keeps me current with other stuff like hip-hop, pop and rock – if it weren’t for him, I’d be stuck on just country for sure.
I love this song. Listening to it puts me in a
car pickup on the way to the beach or mountains for a long four-day weekend. Sun’s high in the sky, and it’s mild enough out to have the windows down blowing my hair everywhere. Instead of a beer beside me, there’s an ice-cold diet Coke or diet Dr. Pepper – no DUI for me, thanks.
But when we arrive at the beach/mountains, I’m poppin’ that top. To whoever made this video, you deserve to be at a million hits by now. I tip my hat to you for a fantastic job…
Yeah, I’m chillin’ on a dirt road…
Laid back swervin’ like I’m George Jones.
This past weekend was one of the most awesomely relaxing weekends in a long time. Did I mention it was a three-dayer? It started Thursday night (I had taken Friday off for the Royal Wedding). Keith had to drag my a** out of bed at 4am to see it – honestly I would’ve missed it if he hadn’t. It was my first attempt at a ‘live-tweet’ for an event such as this… I realize this is very minute to most people, but I can reflect back on it myself and smile. That’s the big thing for me – the memories.
Watched a couple movies recommended by a friend this weekend, both older but awesome.Red Dawn with Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen, and Double Jeopardy with Ashley Judd and Tommy Lee Jones. I can’t say I was blown away by Red Dawn, primarily because it was compared to Shawshank Redemption, which I thought it not even close. Shawshank is EPIC and an all-time fave of mine. But Double Jeopardy – just wow. I could definitely watch that one again.
Saturday we bought some flowers and such for the yard, and spent a good bit of time arranging and planting them. We have a couple of ferns hanging from the porch now and a gorgeous Calibrachoa hanging basket (the flowers look like vibrant mini-petunias). My bright idea was to make a little flower bed surrounding the mailbox at the end of the yard, and we decided on begonias for this. It’s sparse right now, but it’ll grow… Keith’s sister even joked that it must look like a girl is living here now. 🙂
Today there was finally a televised NYY game on – they’re very rare. After a couple of hours of sun, we both opted for a late-afternoon nappiepoo game-front. I love afternoon naps. If the opportunity would present itself a little more often, trust me I would partake. There’s just nothing better – well, almost nothing better.
Finally, today K and I opened a forgotten carton of strawberries we’d gotten at the store Friday… and noticed a label that read “Limited Edition – Fresh California Strawberries”. Being that I’m very attentive to labels, it caught my attention. Limited Edition, seriously? Strawberries? Upon washing, slicing, sprinkling with sugar and sampling, we were looking at each other with owl eyes and saying WTF? Those were the best strawberries I’ve ever had the pleasure of having in my mouth. (Taking note that I never even ate a strawberry until 2.75 years ago when my friend Lori and her son Matt fed me one at a farmers market.) Still… earthshatteringly delectable; blogworthy for sure.
This back and forth stuff between my place and Keith’s is taking it’s toll on me. There’s so much to be done before I move! K suggested this weekend just going ahead and bringing my bed over (going in a middle room) this way I can’t go back there to sleep during the week. My reasoning for not doing this is I’ll never get packed if I’m not there at night to do it. Now – my mind is recalculating. I pass right by my place anyway to and from work, it might actually work better. I made the decision a week ago for Camille to reside with him instead of toting her back and forth – she’s had a year and a half of that and that’s enough. Hmmm. If I said the word, that gorgeous man would be right over with a truck to load up my bed sporting a big smile. So is it really that hard of a decision for me?
Oh yeah, and bin laden is dead. Supposedly. I’ll save all that for another time, another place… another blog.
Keith really entertains me with his love for nature. Early last spring, it was a little box turtle he rescued from a job site that came home to live with him for about 4 months. The little thing was such a carnivore! Keith would diligently go out and ‘fetch’ him worms, and the tiny little turtle would just ravish them. ‘Autobot’ was later released in a nice little pond-like area.
When the time comes, which is soon – there will be black snakes a’plenty. Let me say right up front that I am not a snake person, not even close. This said, upon hearing my screams, Keith will go pick up said snake and transport it to a nearby tree. I personally think these snakes adore him – I say that because one climbed up to his kitchen window to get another glimpse of him last spring. Of course I got a picture of it!
They call him… the snake whisperer.
As it happened, this past weekend was to be insect weekend. From the front porch K motioned for me to come look through the storm door. He was holding a dragonfly, it’s little legs wrapped tight around his finger. He told me it was still a young one (obviously my understanding of the dragonfly aging-process needs work). K’s eagle-eyes found Junior on the ground and said he would be in danger if he got caught there during the looming storm.
And what a storm it was to be. Never in my life have I seen anything larger than quarter-sized hail. Saturday though, we got Kansas hail – baseball-sized. We happened to make national news with this one! I shall call it… Carolina Hail.
I guess I should realize by now, my man doesn’t exaggerate… he just doesn’t have it in him. Chuckle if you want to on that – but I can guarantee if you call him on something he tells you, you’ll lose. I quite simply adore this wonderful trait he possesses.
When I arrived at his house Friday, he told me about this carpenter bee who was running around with a white ass because of him. Carpenter bees are territorial and like to ‘hover’ – add to that the fact that they’re huge. K had been painting some louvered doors outside, and apparently this one wanted to hover in his face. After several failed attempts at rerouting the bee, he inadvertently swiped at it with the paintbrush in his hand. He said it sped off down the street. About an hour later, the bee showed back up at his house, sporting a white ass! Doubting Thomas over here asked if he was sure it was that exact bee, and did it really have a white ass. He calmly said yes, it was that bee and yes, it did.
The next day, we were ready to leave and he pointed up in the air beside him, laughing. Sure enough, said bee turned 90º to look at him (like the snakes, even the bees seem to love him – even after being swiped by a loaded paintbrush) and sure enough it had a white ass! Not just a dot, either – a genuine big white bee-ass! Come yesterday, it’s still guarding that section of the house. My stomach is literally sore from laughing at that, umm-hmm, particular end of the bee.
Sorry for the language, but it’s Keith’s story and that’s what he’s called it from the beginning. It just gives more ooomph to the storyline. Seriously, would a bee with a white butt be funny? Not so much. But a bee with a white ass? Now that’s hilarious…
Are you kidding, of course we got a picture!
Footnote: for all you insect-lovers… no bashing, please. Mr. Carpenter is alive and well, and doing a marvelous job of guarding his assigned spot on the side of the house. In this picture taken Monday 11 Apr, he’s actually hovering above the bricks, as Keith followed him around to get a detailed picture. As of yesterday, the remaining paint looks as though it’s ready to flake off any minute – I only wish we could’ve gotten a shot when his whole, umm, rear, was white!
Though not from lack of trying, I’m unable to throw this virus or whatever it is. This is one time I didn’t go running to the doctor after a day or two of an obviously kickass whatever-it-is set in. It’s now officially a day over two weeks and I’m still left with a chest full of something – the difference is that everything has tightened up now. No good. I decided yesterday to made a doc appointment for this afternoon, so I’ll see what’s going on then. At this point anything will be an improvement!
I am Bon… I am Frontierwoman, hear me roar. I’ve had no power since about 1am this morning. The piedmont had winds up to 90mph wisk through the area last night, and currently over 250M people and 30 schools are without power. Stop lights are out everywhere, power lines are down and traffic is mayhem. Trying to get ready for work by candlelight this morning was hilarious — honestly I think I’d have done better in the dark.
Seriously, it’s the little things. Like power. And working in peace. Well, maybe those aren’t such little things…
It’s one of my favorite places. Basically, I love everything associated with the majestic Blue Ridge mountains – the Parkway, the scenic overlooks, the endless trails to choose from, the attractions like Linville Falls and Taverns, Chimney and Blowing Rocks. And I adore all the little towns in between.
They apparently received some more of the white stuff up there on Saturday. We saw a few small piles of snow scattered on the sides of the road as well as leftover brime. It was a perfectly weathered day to walk the town of Blowing Rock, with the afternoon high reaching about 65º. We hit all our favorite shops like Poppy’s and The Last Straw, and even bought a couple of things. Keith bought a couple of the led wax candles, that actually have timers on them! I thought it was so neat that we’ll never have to touch them except to replace the batteries. I bought something I’ve had my eye on now for over a year… those little battery illuminated willow branches that compliment a large vase arrangement.
It’s nice to walk up and down the streets of a quaint little town while holding hands, never being in a hurry. I always find myself wishing we could stay longer. Of course, the trip wouldn’t have been complete without a trip to Kilwin’s for some homemade fudge. Like I really needed another couple pounds! Oh well, maybe I can spread it out a little so that it doesn’t accumulate all at once…
Today is the 90th day of the year, that means there are 275 days left until the end of the year. Can you believe it? I’m a numbers gal, so naturally I found myself analyzing the setup of the date today. 3-31-11, let’s see… to me that translates into three 3’s. That would equal to 9, which divided by 3 is 3. For the 90th day of the year, divide that by 3 and it’s 30. Seems like 3’s are going to dominate today! *clearing throat* Yep, it’s just another day here in the Life of Bon.
I don’t know about the rest of you but here in the southeast, everything has ‘arrived’ a month early – with the big prize being Spring. It started with constant warmer temperatures in early February, then the winds that usually accompany March arrived. In March, the rain that usually accompanies April arrived. People have long since started with their Spring planting, and the new leaves have adorned the trees for weeks now.
Spring has sprung in the metro Carolinas. Ready or not – here it comes! Although admittedly wary, for weeks now I’ve been stoked with thoughts of an early Spring. Now that the trees are blooming, I’m in ecstatic-mode!
I’m not unrealistic about the frost getting the blooms, and have actually resolved myself to the fact they probably will. But I’ll enjoy it while they last and hey, at least there’s no forecast of frost for the next 10 days!! To boot, in my mind this late-February bloom-pop signals an extra-long Summer! Whoo-hoo!!
The day is bright and springlike outside. No fires in the fireplace this weekend, more like shorts, tank tops and flips! The trees and flowers are starting to bud… but there will surely be some frost to come to snap us all back into reality. Even so, I’m gonna ride this sprint of Spring for all it’s worth. Besides, I still have a few more poundages to lose before it finally does get here!
Later today we’re going to see K’s mom for her birthday and get a bite of dinner. I absolutely adore her, and we’ve actually got a lot in common. She, too, embarked upon a new life not so very long ago – and she’s managing that new life quite well.
Tomorrow ushers in the beginning of the prize of the South… NASCAR season. I don’t follow it like I used to, gosh we used to be at those races about every time the gates were open. Unfortunately I most enjoy napping in front of a race now. The Daytona 500 though… well, ya just can’t miss that one. And Dale Earnhardt, what can I say about him. Doesn’t seem like ten years have passed since he lost his life at this track. Now there’s an icon that’ll never be matched…
Springlike, yes. Sunday afternoon… yeah that sounds good too. Enjoy this new one from Rascal Flatts’ most recent album – and everyone enjoy each other… and the days ahead.
The new season of Survivor is premiering on CBS tonight – I can’t wait!! The show simply never gets old to me. This season is set in Nicaragua and promises to be the most grueling season of earth, wind and fire that we’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing in any of the past eleven years.
Haters, be gone. Tonight I will have my undisturbed 60 minutes of unparalleled HD reality bliss… bring it!!
Oh how I’ve missed my little blog. Seems like there’s not been enough time lately to do anything. I’ve got some catching up to do on my reading as well! Today makes it official – the month is now half spent. In lieu of content, thought I’d bore you with some pictures today…
The sunrise this morning was beautiful – it cast a pinkish-purple hue on the buildings around me.
This past weekend was perfect weather. We took full advantage of it Sunday by gathering our daughters together and climbing a mountain. Okay, it’s not the biggest mountain around, but a mountain nonetheless. It was a great time to be had – we took on the climb, had a beautiful scenic view for a prize, and partook in a nice picnic lunch afterwards that sweetened the deal.
Last night my sweet man brought me roses for Valentines day, both stem as well as a plant for the yard. ♥ We went to dinner at our favorite Japanese steakhouse, Sasaki. My gosh how I love that place! It’s so nice to walk in there and be greeted by our first names – and we always seem to find another friendly neighboring couple to chat with.
It’s not gonna be difficult for me to find a subject for me to hop on today…
It’s Groundhog Day, and for the first time in a long awaited while Punxsutawney Phil is not afraid… that’s right folks, NO SHADOW!! Know what that means?
Spring is near!! Spring is near!! Oh gosh… Spring is near!!
The story of Groundhog Day begins with Candlemas, an early Christian holiday where candles were blessed and distributed. Celebrators of the holiday eventually declared clear skies on Candlemas meant a longer winter. The Roman legions, during the conquest of the northern country, brought this tradition to the Germans, who concluded that if the sun made an appearance on Candlemas Day, a hedgehog would cast a shadow, thus predicting six more weeks of bad weather or “Second Winter.” German immigrants brought the tradition to Pennsylvania, but how did Punxsutawney Phil emerge?
In 1887, a spirited group of groundhog hunters from Punxsutawney dubbed themselves “The Punxsutawney Groundhog Club.” One member was an editor of Punxsutawney’s newspaper. Using his ink, he proclaimed Punxsutawney Phil, the local groundhog, to be the one and only weather prognosticating groundhog. He issued this proclamation on Candlemas, and yes, Groundhog Day. Phil’s fame spread, and newspapers from around the globe began to report his Gobbler’s Knob prediction. Info from http://www.visitpa.com/groundhog-day
In related news, February 2nd is exactly the halfway point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. It is the winter midpoint or ‘cross-quarter’ day. The coldest, bleakest part of our winter season is now officially half over!
Spring is near!! Spring is near!! Oh gosh… Spring is near!
Having been sunny and highs hitting the mid-60’s, what a beautiful weekend it was. We went hiking for a bit yesterday at a local mountain/state park near Keith’s house – it was just the perfect day for it. With the amount of trailing we’ve done in the past year, I’ve decided that I might just be in need of some hiking gear. At the very least, a walking pole with which to steady myself. 🙂
After the hike, I was completely spent. As soon as we got back, I promptly collapsed on the couch and went out like a light for two hours. This is not like me… I’ve seriously got to work on my endurance. With this said, I have been challenged:
I really like the thought of a healthy new recipe under 500 cals per serving. Now, to burn 300 cals (or more) per day? I can only accomplish that one way, Jillian – Ima have to double-up on my workouts this week. I’ll be sure to let ya know how that goes for me.