Thursday Doors-Roanoke Times

It’s already Thursday!!

Me (one minute): doing a happy dance because I leave for vacation at the beach on Saturday.

Me (the next minute): oh wait (stopping mid-dance)! I have a lot to do before I can leave!

Thursday Doors is hosted by Norm 2.0, you can head over and check out some other amazing doors here

The Discover Challenge on WordPress this week is the things we leave behind.  This made me start thinking…

and one thing that I’ve left behind is the printed newspaper. So this week my door contribution is of the Roanoke Times building.

When my husband and I were first married we would get up each morning and sit on the back porch.  He with his coffee and me with my orange juice (no, it wasn’t a mimosa) and we would listen to the world wake up while reading the newspaper.  He eventually converted me into being a coffee drinker, but the routine stayed the same.

Sunday was always fun because the paper was twice as big….sale sheets….comics in color… no rushing, just enjoying section after section.  Then more and more of the world became digital.  The newspaper in its print version wasn’t as important to us.

When we moved to Roanoke we would go down to the local convenient store to pick up the newspaper because I wanted to know what was going on in this new town that I called home.  Eventually I found other places to find that information, including the Roanoke Times online.

We don’t have back porch mornings very often.  Mostly because I like to sleep in during the summer and mornings are chaotic during the school year.  But it does make me think that we should pause on the weekend and carry our cups of coffee out to the back porch and listen to the world come awake.

There’s something nice about slowing down, sipping a cup of coffee, and reading the newspaper.  How about you?  Do you still read a printed newspaper?

Let your light shine!



Mimosa?  Yes, please!

Sparkling wine….orange juice….and….strawberries. 

During these long days of summer this sounds like a little slice of heaven.

I know, I know…

Wait, it’s supposed to be champagne.  No,  there’s triple sec.  Is that a Buck’s Fizz?  Are you sure you have it right?

I think mimosa sounds nicer whether there is triple sec, Grand Marnier, grenadine, or whatever else anyone wants added. Because of that, I will always call the pairing of orange juice and champagne (or sparkling wine), a mimosa.

This mimosa was part of the brunch that I had at my painting day.  The orange juice and sliced strawberries were in a punch bowl.  There was the option of adding a sparkling wine, in this case  a Moscato Spumante, if you wanted a mimosa.

Mimosas are typically created based on your alcohol preference.  A 1-1 ratio of champagne (or sparkling wine) and orange juice is considered “middle of the road”.  Like a little more alcohol?  Make it 2-1, with more champagne.  A little less of a fan of alcohol?  Make it 2-1, with more orange juice.  Easy as that!

Summertime and fresh, ripe strawberries… sounds like a perfect pairing to me!

I’m thinking this recipe is the perfect excuse to gather up some friends, pair this with a little food, and join in with lots of smiles and laughter!


Let your light shine!



*This is my first time entering a photo for Frank’s Tuesday Challenge over at Dutch Goes the Photo, but this was in my archives and the theme is orange this week.  I’ve loved looking at the amazing entries each week!  I’m also entering it into the WordPress weekly photo challenge for details.



This is Home

Bloom where you are planted.

This is the thought that has been weaving its way in and out of my mind for the past week.  Summertime makes me restless.  People are in and out town.  I am in and out of town.  Routines are thrown out the window.  It makes me miss home.

And then I think, but what is home?  I spent the first 30 years of my life in the same town.  The majority of my family is there.  I thought I’d live in that town forever.  …And then I didn’t.

I recently started working through the book Having a Martha Home the Mary Way by Sarah Mae.  On one of the days she recommends a personality test to discover your cleaning style.  I took some different ones.  They all came to a similar conclusion:

I don’t like change.

A few other traits mentioned were: careful, methodical, loyal, disciplined, likes a secure environment, concerned what people think, avoids conflict and change.  I had to laugh as I read them to my husband because this list didn’t surprise either of us.

But what do you do when change is upon you?  Since that moment when I drove away from the house that I thought I’d live in forever, change has been an ever-present part of my existence.  Even when things are steady, I think change is around the corner.  Sometimes I live in expectation of that change and so I don’t fully embrace where I am in that moment.

This is my third city since I left my hometown 8 years ago.  I have learned a lot about change and have grown, but I still have a long way to go. I am right upon the 3 year mark in this place.  My children have finally found their happiness here.  On our return back from Florida, there were some comments about liking Virginia better.  My first thought was “you traitors”, but in reality I was overjoyed that their hearts are content here.  I am still restless.  I have realized it’s because I haven’t fully tried to “bloom where I’ve been planted”.  Home is wherever you make it.

Like a child on their first trip to the ocean, I wander to the edge of the roaring sea. As soon as the waves touch my toes, I run back to my spot of safety on the shore.  After a while, I’m ready to make my way back again.  I do so with trepidation and this time I let the waves roll over my feet.

The biggest thing that I have realized through my moves is to just keep putting yourself out there.  This is not a strong trait of mine.  But I keep doing it.  It takes time.  It’s not always comfortable.  Sometimes it’s downright scary.  My advice is to keep pressing beyond your comfort.  If you take the time to sink in your roots or to brave jumping  into the waves, you will find joy and contentment.

You will bloom where you have been planted.

The Lord will guide you always;
    he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
    and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
    like a spring whose waters never fail. – Isaiah 58:11

Let your light shine!


Tuckahoe Mansion

One of my favorite places to visit when I return to Jensen Beach in Florida is Indian Riverside Park.  It’s a 63 acre park that is on the Indian River Lagoon.  There are so many things to love about the park that today I will just focus on one of the spots that I like to visit at the park.  It is the Mansion at Tuckahoe.

This is the view looking up at the Mansion from the Terrace Amphitheater.

The Mansion has been on the Register of Historic Places since 2005 and is built on Mount Elizabeth Mound.  The information that I was able to find is that the property was built in 1938 by Willaford Leach and his wife Anna Bates Leach (a Coca-Cola heiress). It was named “Tuckahoe” because it was believed that was the Native American word for “Welcome”.

In 1950, Tuckahoe was sold to the Catholic Church and became St. Joseph’s College.  The college closed in 1972 and was sold to Florida Institute of Technology.  It was purchased in 1996 by the County.  It sat unused until its restoration by the Friends of Mount Elizabeth in 2009.

The Mansion is now used as a rental venue.  You can see in some of my old photos from when we lived nearby that it overlooks the Indian River Lagoon.  Its location and grandeur make it a popular wedding venue.  I have not had any reasons to go inside so I can’t tell you much about that.  The Tuckahoe Terrace Amphitheater is a fun place to hang out and smell the salty air. The boardwalk that runs along the park passes by the mansion along the river.

The church we attended when we lived there hosted a Easter Sunrise Service there (daybreak and I don’t typically meet) and I’ve seen that some other churches have hosted a Sunrise Service there in the years since.  I have seen the sun rise over the Indian River Lagoon and it is a beauty!  There have also been some concerts held at the amphitheater.

There are rumors that the Mansion is haunted.  Again, I’ve never been inside, but the fact that the plaque says “ceremonial” grounds….I have had experiences in life that can’t just be explained away, so I don’t rule anything out.

I’m including this in Thursday Doors, hosted by Norm 2.0.  I wish the doors were a little more spectacular (and there may be some that are), but they fit nicely in with the large amounts of glass that offer a beautiful view of the surrounding area.

If you are ever down near Jensen Beach, you should definitely put Indian Riverside Park on your list.  The Mansion is only one of the many reasons that I love this park.

Let your light shine!


Treasures in a thrift store

Today I found an old typewriter at a thrift store. Let me back up.  My DAUGHTER found an old typewriter at a thrift store today.

I have been wanting to find a manual typewriter for some time.  Not specifically hunting one down, but prepared to pick one up if I stumble upon one.  Today, we decided to pop into the thrift store, mostly to get out of the house, but I’m also looking for some dining room chairs to sit in my garage waiting for me to paint them refinish.  The chair hunt was a bust, but there was an amazing Zenith stereo console that I would have brought home with me in a second if I could justify another piece sitting in the garage while I work up the nerve to tackle something new (painting/repurposing).

Then we came across the typewriter sitting on a desk.  It was in a hard, black case.  And the case would not open!!  My daughter and I worked at it, had my husband come over and try, found a butter knife for leverage, worked at it some more, all to no avail.  At this point, all I knew was that it was a Smith-Corona (or at least the case was).  My husband was not an advocate of buying it without being able to open the case.  It could have missing keys, etc.  I really wanted it and figured I could get the case open with some prying.  It would be like a mystery bag and the price point of $7 was worth the risk to me.

When we got home, I was able to pry the case open.  Inside was a Smith-Corona Galaxie Deluxe.


It had all its keys.  It had the ribbon.  It had a tag and owner’s guarantee card.  It was beautifully vintage….retro….antique…. take your pick .

Apparently there are “proper” ways to use these words with antique typically being over 100 years old.  In this case, that wouldn’t be an applicable term.

However the simple definitions in the Merriam-Webster dictionary are:

Antique: belonging to an earlier period, style, or fashion : old and often valuable.

Retro: looking like or relating to styles or fashions from the past.

Vintage: a period in which something was made or was begun.

I have a love for items from my past that are no longer in standard use.  Typewriters and rotary phones among things I’d love to own for posterity.  I’m not an expert on these blasts from the past. I do know that this typewriter is older than me.  The typewriter was purchased in January 1970, 7 3/4 years before I was born!

I don’t think my daughter completely understood the newness of modern technology.  When I was a sophomore in high school, half of my typing class was on the typewriter and half on a computer.  This was in 1991-92.    I had a car phone when I turned 18.  They advocated against a cellular phone for me because the range was about 1/2 mile instead of a mile and 1/2 and I lived in the country.  Granted, I was not ahead of the curve, but my first e-mail address was when my husband and I met in 1998 (I still have it, by the way).  And I’m not even 40 yet, people! (for my younger readers, I understand that I’m ancient.  Some of you will realize the immense communication gains in a short period of time.)

My daughter was so excited to see if it worked.  I was sure the ribbon would be completely dried out.  And while it does need replaced, it did work!

She watched her first horror film last week, so if you are a fan of horror you’ll understand her first typing attempt.  I have two sets of people ( Jami and then my three closest friends when I graduated high school) with whom each of my experiences with this film has left longstanding memories.

It did not occur to me until afterward that this recent watching of The Shining was the cause for her excitement over stumbling upon a typewriter. I was just enjoying our shared joy over the thrill of finding this treasure.

Every day….making memories….creating our story.




Before Florida’s State of Emergency

You may or may not have seen that Florida has declared a State of Emergency for Martin and St. Lucie Counties.  I’ve recently read that Lee and Palm Beach Counties have been added to that.

Martin County is where I lived before moving to Virginia.  I absolutely love it there. It is small and has a very laid back atmosphere, something my hometown of Naples, Florida can’t claim. In fact, Stuart was named Coastal Living’s Happiest Seaside Town for 2016.  The secret is out about it, but hopefully it will continue to maintain its Old Florida charm.  When we return to Florida, it is always included in our stop to visit friends, catch some waves, stroll around downtown, and meander along the riverfront boardwalk.


There has constantly been controversy over the release of the water from Lake Okeechobee and the algae blooms.  I am not an expert, nor have I even delved into the thoughts behind each side.  I will tell you that when I moved from Naples, we relocated to Okeechobee.  This is the city on the North End of the lake.  We lived there for two years before moving to the east coast so that I could go back to school (and smell the salt water).

In my time on the coast, we spent a lot of time at the beach.  It was interesting that some days the water was very turquoise and some days a little less so.  I didn’t think much of it because I am from the Gulf side of Florida and the water is much darker there.  But in driving North toward Ft. Pierce or South toward Jupiter or West Palm Beach, there would be a definite line in the ocean where you could see the water become more turquoise.


We were down in Jensen Beach for vacation, right before the algae bloom.  There were quite a few heavy downpours, which I suspect was what prompted the lake release.  A storm rolling in had created 8-9 foot waves.  We did not go out that day, but went the next few days when they were 4-5 foot.  My daughter was able to surf on the last day, which was finally even smaller.  The seaweed was getting pretty thick that day so we were only there a couple hours.  That was on June 22nd and we left to see my family in Naples on the morning of the 23rd. You can see in this aerial   what the water looked like on June 29th.

This bloom coming right into a holiday weekend is a major economic upset.  I’m sure people were counting on the visitors who would be there.  We like to stay at River Palm Cottages because it is right on the Indian River.  We were there for spring break also and try to get a place when I plan far enough in advance (which is not my strong skill).


I hope they get it all resolved soon. They can’t allow the lake to fill.  The dike won’t hold and there are people and livelihoods that surround the lake on all sides.  They also can’t keep continuing to kill the marine life, pollute the waters, and ruin the coastal livelihoods.  I don’t know what the answers are, only that it is a big mess.

*edit-If I’d actually been caught up on Facebook, I would have seen this article posted by one of my friends in Okeechobee explaining some comments from the Lake.

Let your light shine!



*The two beach pictures were taken at Jensen Beach “Sea Turtle Beach” and the others were taken at from the River Palm Cottages dock on the Indian River Lagoon in Jensen Beach between June 19-June22, 2016.