Wednesday, March 8, 2017

A Perfect Hodgepodge and New Photo Ops

Hello and happy HUMP-Day!
Not only is it Hump day, it's also time for Joyce's weekly Hodgepodge.
Have you all seen the new look of her blog?
I think it's really quite lovely and so is her new Hodgepodge button.

From this Side of the Pond
Pretty, huh?

Before we get into the questions, I'd like to share a new photo op that I have.
I know I don't need to tell you how much I love getting out in the country with my camera...
it really is a form of worship for me.
Problem is, the area around where I live is growing like crazy and little by little,
the country is getting harder and harder to find!
Do you remember my road less traveled? 
To understand what I mean, click on the link to see the way it used to look...before 'it' happened.

Well, here it is now...  

...and although it is not that widely traveled as of yet due to the newness,
it used to be lined with wildflowers and in the spring and summer a haven for birds and butterflies.
I will keep checking it to see if there are any leftovers when spring comes in earnest.
The road you see off to the right leads to the new Walmart distribution center (grumble),
which leads to another yet-to-be-developed industrial park (grumble, grumble).

At least the donkeys are still there at the end of the road.
Last week some of you may have heard Vee's rendition of "Where Have All the Bloggers Gone?"...
...well I have been singing my version, "Where Has All the Country Gone?", for years now.
And right now all you youngsters out there are saying,
"What song are they talking about, anyway?" :)

So I say all of that to say this......
There is an old house down the road from me that's been empty for as long as I can remember...
...I pass it numerous times during the week.
There are two ponds behind it and it's just a gorgeous setting.
For a long time I have been hoping to find someone there to ask permission to take photos.
A few months ago I Google mapped it and got the address and owners of the property,
got the phone number through voter registration (yes I did), called but could only leave a message.
Over the weekend I called again and this time my call was returned....YESSSS!!
Permission granted.....YESSSS and YESSSS!!

I'm looking forward to watching spring come to life as well as what the other seasons bring.


Although the property is on the corner of a very busy intersection,
once you get back behind the house, you're in a different world.

So consider this a warning...there will be tons many more pics to come!
So now...ON with the Hodgepodge...

1. What is one area of your life where you're a perfectionist? Is that a good thing?
I do not consider myself a perfectionist about many things at all. If there is a way to cut a corner here or there (in a good way, of course) I will find it. There is one area that I think I just might be...I wrote about this very thing on a blogger's comment just the other day. Years ago when I was an older teen and young adult, I drew portraits of some of my family and a friend here and there. It seems I was never really finished with one because every time I thought I was, I would make a slight change here or there because I felt something wasn't quite right. Of course that wasn't possible after I finally sprayed the fixative on it. Perfection or at least striving for it can be good thing if kept in perspective.

2. What's something you find perfectly ridiculous?
Where do I begin? The world is so full of ridiculousness today...upheaval of every kind, anger and strife every where you look. It seems many people are offended about something. You are not "with it" if you are not up in arms about something. I must not be "with it." And that's fine with me.

3. What's a skill you've developed by way of that old fashioned saying, 'practice makes perfect?
Like I said, I hesitate to use the word perfection in the same sentence with my name. But I do make a pretty good black raspberry pie. If you don't believe me, ask my hubby or son, Adam. This is a favorite dessert for them and they both get a pie for their birthdays instead of a cake. There is a running joke every time I make them one and because I am my own worst critic, they always say, "This is the BEST pie you've ever made!"... LOL.

4. What's your idea of a perfect breakfast?
Egg casserole of some sort, a blueberry muffin, fresh fruit and coffee... OR the blueberry pancakes with a side of bacon at Cracker Barrel...and coffee, of course :)

5. What's a trip, holiday, vacation, or day outing you've taken that you'd rate a perfect 10? Tell us why.
Give me a weekend (a week or a month or longer) at Adam's mountain paradise in the Tennessee countryside. That is why we plan to be retiring there in the not-so-distant future.

6. What quote or saying perfectly sums up your life right now? If you can't do perfect, how about one that comes close?
I'm not perfect, just forgiven...right now and always.

7. How would you spend $300 today?
At this very moment in time, I would give it to my church to help with it's current financial need.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
The forecast is calling for snow this Sunday. I mean...really??...come on now!


  1. Good morning, my lovely friend! It was truly a joy to visit with you and read your wonderful thoughts :) The new button for the hodgepodge party is simply beautiful! I love it.

    Thanks for the wonderful photos, my friend. You live in such a pretty area.

    Have a great day! Hugs to you!

  2. Hi Debby! I'm so glad you got permission to take photos, and that you would even think of it amazes me. I would just assume it was abandoned property and just go on over and start snapping away. That's why you're the photographer. :)
    I would say that unfortunately, I am a perfectionist. I hope I'm getting a little better with it, allowing for my human-ness. Really, it's important to be kind to ourselves, and perfectionists usually are not so great at that.
    Your pie sounds wonderful, even though I don't like fruit pies as a general rule. Anything with chocolate, and I'm in 100%.
    Enjoy your wonderful weather! We have a wind advisory today, with predicted 50 mph gusts. Phew!

  3. I soo enjoyed this whole post! Your pictures are soo beautiful. I always admire so those who can not only take a good picture, but one who knows just what is beautiful to capture. You do both soo well. What a lovely view behind that abandoned house. LOVE your answers to 2, 6 and 7. Hope you have a lovely day!

  4. Love your answers. I am, like you, too hard on myself with being critical of the way I do things. I could give everyone else a pass---but not myself. We have horrible winds here today-and it spit snow this morning. I am OVER winter...I was sun and warm weather! xo Diana

  5. I think you have discovered a real treasure in that new photo op place. I can see many gorgeous shots coming from there.

  6. The road less traveled is a wonderful road to be on from time to time, Debby. I just saw a few geese the other day. Is it true, do they mate for life? That was nice of the owner's of the old house to allow you to take pictures of the surrounding area. It's so pretty. I totally agree with your thoughts on number 2. I appreciate your special words about it.

    Enjoy your snow on Sunday, Debby. I don't get to see it living here unless I drive an hour away. : )


  7. I'm so glad you got permission to take photos there. It's lovely now, so I can hardly wait to see what spring and summer will bring.
    It is so hard to see trees and countryside wiped out by industry. It's happening much more slowly where I live now, but my home before here in Alberta, the clearing of land was non-stop! It always breaks my heart.
    Happy Hump Day,

  8. Wow what a difference in the roads.
    Glad you were able to take pictures of the beautiful place!!
    Gorgeous pictures.

  9. Yes, where has all the bloggers and sweet little country towns gone?
    Well everything changes and I feel at loss at times. Love your idea of a perfect breakfast! Breakfast is one of my most favorite meals.
    So glad you got to take some pictures of that land that is still filled with nature and ponds! Blessings...Roxy

  10. How nice that you rec'd permission to take photos. Looking forward to spring/summer photo ops from there. We even have a traffic jam in our little town! It's hard to see things change.

  11. Goodness that road has changed! There is still a lot of loveliness there, though, and I am a big fan of the donkeys. <3

    Now you have gone and made me hungry for a slice of black raspberry pie...with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, please?

    We are expecting the snow Friday, but it is March in Pennsylvania so winter is still toying with us.

  12. I was in shock to see how the road less traveled used to look...a regular take me back Country Road/s. Now there's another song to stump the young'uns. May you enjoy the smooth ride (with little traffic) more than you think. Blackberry Pie? Oh yum! I don't think practice has helped me with a thing...certainly not my piano playing. 🙂

  13. These are some beautiful scenes and those donkeys are so cute!

  14. Oh Debby, I do know what you mean about countryside being built up and the haven for creatures disappearing. So sad. Around here, there have stood old farmsteads for years and years, some old abandoned places, but now they're being torn down and replaced with yet another acre of tillable ground. Not even a trace of the history of the farm and family remains. Very sad, in my opinion. I'd love to taste your black raspberry pie! I love berry pies more than any other kind.

  15. So sad to lose the beauty of country roads and much of nature's glory. (And in exchange for a WM distribution center?!) I am glad to know that you have been granted permission to photograph a more natural area. I'll be looking forward to seeing some of those pics!

    Black raspberry pie! You know how to get a girl hankering for a midnight snack. :)

  16. So sad (and scary!) to see such beautifully tranquil country roads turning into money-making commercial roads! I'd be taking as many photos as I can to preserve them in my memory, at least. Your breakfast choices have me craving bacon!

    Have a lovely Thursday, Debby!


  17. I just can't believe the difference in that little country road. It is very sad. There used to be several country dirt roads still around, but now it is almost impossible to find one. Sigh! Boy, when you want something, you stick with it! That is a beautiful spot with the pond and all. I need to be more like you! :)

  18. Aah progress, sad really. When you move to your Tennessee paradise you will be thrilling us with many, many awesome photos. Yum, your breakfast sounds delicious and as for that pie....I'm licking my lips!

  19. I love riding in the country, it reminds me of when I was a child and would visit my Aunts 1000 area farm. Your photo's are really pretty. I do love paved roads but doesn't the unpaved one look like a great place to walk and see all of nature.

  20. Change... so many changes when I was little there were so many empty lots even in busy San Francisco up where I grew up now there is not a one.. and few days ago I noticed all the little cottages are getting gutted out and redone.. it 's amazing and to me heart breaking because the beauty is leaving.. hopefully they won't make much more change to your area lovely photos Happy Thursday with love Janice

  21. Oh how sad! I am sad with you! I love peace and quiet, and am so thankful to live on a gravel road where I can walk in peace with hardly nary a car to bother me, and where I can walk and talk and sing to the Lord as I please, no one to hear but the dogs! :) I am so thrilled to hear of your approval to go to your new quiet spot for peace, beauty, and of course, pictures! Like you, I have to take pictures of the beauty, I want to capture it somehow forever. I will look forward to the pictures you are able to take in this tranquil setting! Hugs to you today :)

  22. No mater where you live there are changes, and not always for the good.

    It is so important that we live with nature and not against it ... alas this does seem to fall on deaf ears sometimes!

    I do like all of your photo's and 'a different world', and a chance for some peace and quiet is so good.

    Have a blessed week

    All the best Jan

  23. I enjoyed your about much has changed since I left Tennessee in much ground that I ran around on, explored, took my dogs now have houses on them. Why do we always wish things could stay the same but it never does?

  24. Twin sis and I took off on a Saturday not long ago, in search of rural scenery. We drove in a giant circle but never managed to completely leave the city. (grumble, sigh) At least the donkeys are still grazing ... for now.

  25. I always love your photos, Debby. How nice that you were able to contact the owners of the property, and then take some pictures. How nice that one day you'll be retiring to Adam's mountainside paradise. That's a happy thought!

  26. Oh, what a lovely place! I am glad you got permission to take pictures and look forward to seeing them later! Oh, my, I know what you mean...I long for the old days, simple, uncluttered by the stamp of consumerism. I think we were born way past our time!! LOL! Have a wonderful day, my friend...they are predicting snow where we live, too, but I'm not buying it. :) But, a girl can dream, right?

  27. Nothing stays the same, that has been my motto since we went through mom and dad's estate sale and then dad passed away. Changes are always going to come, even those that we least expect.
    Our area has changed so drastically since I grew up here in the Rocky Mountains, it's quite sad.
    Your country side is gorgeous, Debby, and I always enjoy your photos as you share with us.
    What a joy to be able to have access to that beautiful property. I'm looking forward to you sharing it with us.
    You have a BIG heart! Your 300.00 to the church rather than using it on yourself is a glory to God.
    Next time your baking that wonderful pie, you just go ahead and find a way to ship a piece my way. :-)

    Have a beautiful weekend~

  28. Nothing stays the same, that has been my motto since we went through mom and dad's estate sale and then dad passed away. Changes are always going to come, even those that we least expect.
    Our area has changed so drastically since I grew up here in the Rocky Mountains, it's quite sad.
    Your country side is gorgeous, Debby, and I always enjoy your photos as you share with us.
    What a joy to be able to have access to that beautiful property. I'm looking forward to you sharing it with us.
    You have a BIG heart! Your 300.00 to the church rather than using it on yourself is a glory to God.
    Next time your baking that wonderful pie, you just go ahead and find a way to ship a piece my way. :-)

    Have a beautiful weekend~

  29. Oh, what lovely pictures, Debby. And how sad what has happened to your "road less traveled" in just a year or two. God has given you a wonderful opportunity now to visit and take photos at this beautiful property. I for one will be looking forward to seeing more of it as the seasons change.

    I so enjoyed reading your Hodgepodge answers. Your quote is a good one for me, too. And your breakfast ... mm-mmm! Your black raspberry pie sounds wonderful. Your random thought -- yes, tonight is predicted to get down to 6 degrees. Six!

    Oh ... and I love your new header!

  30. What an enjoyable prelude to the HP and such beautiful pics. I love cutting corners when possible too, it just makes sense to me. :o)) And, I so agree with your #2 and I must not be with it either. Have a wonderful weekend!

  31. I enjoyed your hodge today--or whenever you wrote it--I'm late reading it, if there is "late" in blogland. It is hard to believe your beautiful pond photos are at the corner of busy. It looks so peaceful. I bet those owners are delighted someone wants to appreciate the beauty that they enjoy. I will look forward to more photos. I was thinking your old country lane was going to have housing developments all along it. That's what's happening here every where you look. Crazy. As to the snow--well, they've been wrong before but 90 % chance looks pretty good. Enjoy!

  32. Lovely photos and I can relate to the changes. I live in southwestern pa, washington county...and the only way that I can describe the change here in the last 10-15 years between the lovely rural landscape, farms, rolling hills,etc. to the never-ending strip malls is RAPE. The landscape has been raped.

  33. Your photography is always stunning, Debby! I would say that is perfection at its best.

    I wish I could bottle up some of our weather and send to sky and 88 degrees is the prediction!

    Warm hugs,

  34. I'm sorry they paved your road, that is sad. dirt roads are so cool to travel in the summer with your arm hanging out the window.

    love the pond. looks like a great place for spring peepers.


Thank you for stopping by today! Your sweet comments are such an encouragement to me.

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