Sunday, June 07, 2020

Take a Nature Break

Morning view of the New River.

The New River is one of those marvels that flows NORTH, winding its way from where it starts near Blowing Rock, North Carolina, through Virginia and into West Virginia where it joins up with the Kanawha River.

The New River is unique among North Carolina rivers for several reasons. It is believed to be one of the few major rivers in the United States to flow north.

And I think that makes it pretty darn notable.

Zoey and I set out on this particular hike on Thursday.  Rain was in the forcast for the afternoon, ,temps were hot and reaching muggy, and the morning was the best time of the day to get out there.

Barbed wore wreath on old gate.

There is something about that lone tree on the hill!

(And yes, the storm clouds are gathering!)

The Halsey House -

I’ve shared photos of this place a few different times – but what caught me this time is how that ivy is just taking over the second floor!  How I wish someone could come love on this house.  I think it is the electric company that owns the land now – evidently they don’t care.  But like I said, I don’t know the story. 

I just say hello to the ghosts of this place and keep walking up the road – because it is uphill ALL. THE. WAY.

Except where it levels off a bit here, and goes down just a ways -

And then UP again!

We are coming from behind the sign so we’ve just left Virginia and are now in North Carolina.

I guess the Halseys and McMillans just up the road really could say that their nearest neighbor lived the next state over.

Humidity on the mountains!

I have always loved country lanes leading to wherever country lanes lead to – that double track dirt path letting us know where tires have been.  And though this is a couple of days ago, I’ll still play the video for you because the sentiment is the same – and just listen to those cicadas.

Click to Play

On this day I was checking out the resilience of tree roots.

I have no idea how old this big huge tree is….but its roots are determined to stay firm and strong no matter how nature has eroded away the soil around them.  Steadfast.

And to help it stay upright those roots have also spread WIDE for more footing.

Clear over here – these are still roots!

And it is keeping company with this one across the road!

Sometimes having someone to stand firm with you makes the effort that much more doable.  Life lesson?

There were life lessons a plenty this day.

There he was in the middle of the road that had recently been spread with course chunky gravel.

I was afraid he would get run over blending into the rocks and dirt the way he did. It's a good thing I grabbed a thick stick to try to move him as this guy was a heck of a snapper! There was no safe way to pick him up.

I've always been told to take a turtle in the direction they were already heading so I scooted him to the side of the road and left him in the weeds at the edge of the creek.

It's amazing what you can learn by observing wildlife. Some people are like snapping turtles. All you want to do is help them, and all they want to do is bite your head (or fingers) off!

Also - it doesn't matter if you receive thanks or not. The person (or turtle) may not even be grateful. And that's OK. You did what you could and that is enough.

I added another row to my Shoo Fly Shoo variation this morning.

This thing is SO BUSY!

But I am loving it.  Every piece.

I need 3 more rows to get to the bottom left corner and than can start tapering down again.  You can see that the upper right corner is starting on its way down the right side.

The sad realization?  I am going to have to make MORE Shoo Fly blocks to get the amount I need, and after a year (and nearly 2 quilts worth) of these I am ready to be done and wanting to move on to our next Leader & Ender challenge starting in July!

Binding started last night -

But I didn’t get far because -

Hahahaha! ZOEY!

What’s a dog mom supposed to do?

Today we are back at the inn.  More painting has been going on while I dealt with sanitizing linens, putting quilts away for the duration of Covid, replacing the the freezer paper on the ironing stations in the Quilting Quarters, dusting, cleaning – general house keeping.

More today.

And those torrential storms we had a couple weeks ago that caused the New River to flood the way it did?  I think some of that rain found a way through the tin roof over bedroom 5 as there are now a couple of water spots on the ceiling that were not there before.  So that needs to be inspected, and the leak source fixed.  That means that during a time when there is a break between retreats we will likely have to  replace part of the bedroom 5 drywall ceiling and repaint that.  UGH.

It’s always something, right?  But that’s life with a 136 year old house.

Quiltville Quote of the Day  -

We will only have this day once. Attitude makes all the difference!

I made this four-patch on point quilt in the early 1990s. It's seen many a year of good use.

These are the kinds of nearly worn out and definitely “dated” small quilts that are great over picnic tables with lemonade and treats.

Perhaps on the back porch?

Have a lovely Sunday, everyone!


  1. Such a GORGEOUS place to stroll along the river! I'm wondering if you drive to and park for your walk and how far away it is from your place. Such beautiful, peaceful scenery. I'd live to see a fast motion video of just one of your days! HA

  2. As a single mom of two kids, "We are going on an adventure" was often my motto. Recently, I was plotting yet another grand adventure when my 22 year old son said, "No! I absolutely refuse to go on another 'adventure' today." I secretly gasped and had to laugh. Life IS an adventure.

    1. I had a good laugh reading this...'we are having an adventure' was my phrase whenever I got lost on the road. I took my two sons (now in their 30s eek!)when young, on many trips away and inevitably if they found me looking at maps or directories they would ask 'are we having an adventure?'

  3. I grew up in an old house and my beloved father always said. “No matter where you sit, you are always facing something that needs to be done.”

  4. You have a wonderful attitude. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Wonderful life lessons for us today... thanks for sharing them with us!

  6. Another life lesson learned from nature/wild life that a chemistry teacher I had shared (during the 60's = another time of protests): "Take a lesson from the turtle: if you want to get somewhere you have to stick your neck out." I added a turtle charm to my bracelet to remember that.

  7. I love the little things in nature that you notice.....I would walk right by. Have a great day. How is Emmy Lou and how is Lola?

  8. Sure is beautiful there! Thanks for sharing. Been cloudy and wet here in central florida for a couple days, and more forecasted-Thank you Cristobal. Despite the tornadoes last night, the rain is a blessing for most of the state.

  9. OMG I have a ton of 5" squares of the fabric in the broken dish portion of your quote pic quilt, bought as a stash bundle on Ebay 7 years ago ! LOL, Hope you received your Scooby Fabric strips I sent , Dont thimk they made this quilt, but maybe the next. Thanks for all you do.Cant start my day right without checking n here. Have a great day

  10. The river bu me flows North! At least for part of the time! I thought it was the only one! I live in Eastern Idaho, by the bear river! Love that nature constantly reminds us of the good in the world!

  11. We have a north flowing river, Red River of the North, runs between states and into southern Manitoba, Can.

  12. The San Pedro river in southern Arizona flows north.

  13. Such a beautiful walk the scenery is so lush and green, I can really see why you moved here so relaxing. I’m sure ZoeyJo is enjoying all that she can find on your hikes.
    Love the progress of your shoo fly shoo Quilt, and Casdens binding will get don in between ZoeyJo hugs it might just take a little time lol
    Stay safe
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  14. What a beautiful house. The area reminds me of the little house of the prairie. I live in Holland, so no option to buy the house.

  15. The St Lawrence River between northern New York state and Ontario, Canada also flows north. Originates with the Great Lakes and flows into the Atlantic Ocean.

  16. Have a Happy Blessed Birthday

  17. Going on an adventure Wednesday. I am taking my granddaughter Gianni to a softball tournament in Olathe, Ks, but I keep saying Omaha. My daughter is like "do I need to go with you" I said "no we may just have an adventure", but we will get there. Working on a Log Cabin in teal and cream for Gianni's pitching coach for my next quilt.

  18. I'm curious about the freezer paper at the ironing stations...do you cover something with freezer paper? Thanks for your answer.

  19. Forgot to mention - we lived near a north-flowing river. The Tennessee River flows north from the Pickwick Lake dam in TN to the Land of the Lakes in Kentucky.

  20. I love the land of the lakes from the TN side. That is as far as I have been.

  21. Just wondered if you have ever peaked in the windows of the Halsey House? If not have you been tempted? If so what does it look like? Is it as old as the Inn? I always wonder what older houses look like inside, old farm house too.

  22. Love that "older" quilt. Classic & beautiful.


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