Friday, January 27, 2012

Sugar Snow ( a winter give away)

"In the morning the house was warm from the stove,
but when Laura looked out of the window she saw
that the ground was covered with soft thick snow. All
along the branches of the trees the snow was piled like
feathers, and it lay in mounds all along the top of the rail
fence, and stood up in great, white balls on top of the gate
posts.   Pa came in, shaking the soft snow from his shoulders 
and stamping it from his boots,  'It's a sugar snow', he said."  

The family farm has long been a vital image in the heritage of rural Kentucky.  As the most noted structures of farms, barns evoke a sense of tradition, security, and of closeness to the land and the community of people who built them.  Throughout American history, farmers have built barns to shelter their livestock and to store their harvest.  

  Just off any of the major roads in my area, you will find smaller, more rural roads, some of them dirt roads, leading to what we call "hollers".  Along these roads and dotted all along the landscape of the farms, are these amazing barns, many of them barely shells of the once proud structures that stood so tall and were the symbol of a way of life that today - is no more.

 Last winter, the Gardener and I took an entire afternoon on a blustery snowy day, to drive around the community so that we could capture these images.  We drove down roads that we did not even know existed - stopping along the way so that I could climb the hills, cross the fences, and wade through the snow - in order to take these pictures.  (at this particular stop - I truly took a tumble OVER the hill! I will do most anything to get a picture that I want!)

Old barns are one of my passions.  I am intrigued by their style and the history that they have survived. In my mind, every barn exists to tell a story.  I find them to be beautiful even in their state of decay and demise.   If only these sagging, once proud architectural wonders could talk~~


I fell over this hill too!

This old church stands all alone beside the highway - a symbol of what was once a fine and active part of the soul of the community. In time, this church and many of the barns pictured here will no longer be able to bear the weight of the winter snows.  One last snow, even that of a "sugar snow" will bring them to their final demise~~

Welcome to my first give away of the Year!

This stunningly beautiful cookbook has wonderful recipes that will warm your soul this winter. 

In addition to the recipes, the cook book is filled with gorgeous photography.

The contest is open to any of my faithful readers or followers.
To enter simply leave a comment - making sure that you have an email address where I can reach you.  

Does it matter where you live?  Absolutely not- the contest is open to my friends from all over the world. 
(Remember - I shipped a nest to a lucky winner in Russia one time!)

For a second chance to win - please post about this contest on your own blog.  Then leave me another comment telling me that you have done so. 

Are you one of my followers (who mean the world to me!!)  If so - then leave me a third comment  telling me so.  That will be your third opportunity to enter.  

I have shared with you but a few of the beautiful
photographs and recipes inside this
There are many, many more! 

 And there is more to come! ~~

Here is Maddy girl wearing a pretty Vera Bradley apron.
 One of my lucky followers will win this Mocha Rouge design.

If you are one of my devoted followers - and have left me a comment telling me that you are a follower - then you will be entered in a separate contest to win this Vera apron. 
 Maddy girl will draw the winner for the cookbook and for the Vera apron on February 18.  I will post the names right here - so be sure to check back!
Winners update~ the winner of the Vera Bradley apron is Shirley from the blog Shirley Stitches.

The winner of the cookbook is Arleen from the blog Starting Over, Accepting Changes.  

Ladies - please send me your mailing address so that I can send your gifts to  you!  Thank you to everyone who entered - this has been a great contest!  There will be several more contests coming up this spring - (it's my favorite thing to do!!)

Coming up next - a little chance for you to get to know me better.  Over the past year - I  have met so many wonderful people through this incredible blogging experience.  I have dutifully kept a diary of all the questions that folks have asked me.  So now - I am going to answer them.  (If you have a burning question - send it to me now - I will try to work it in to this post also) ~~~


One More Thing~~

 You welcomed my friends into your hearts and left them the most precious comments here on my blog. For all of you that said,  "those guys need to get their own blog ---- they LOVED that idea so much that they did just that!! You can find them HERE. 
Please give them a visit and show them some blogging LOVE!! Don't we all remember what it is like to be a newbie blogger!!

My friends Bob and Eric are welcoming you to their new blog with a giveaway of their very own!  So give them a visit - enter their contest - and maybe join me on their follower page!  (right now I am there all by myself.  Don't leave me there all alone!) 

You just know that these guys are going to have some serious fun with this blog~~!!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Catching up with the Grand Babes

We are so blessed to have 3 of the most precious little people in our lives~

 Our Keri Beth will be 2 years old in April.

 She loves her Papaw and runs to him the minute we walk in the door.  She says "Papaw" all the time - she WILL NOT say "gb" at all :(

 We all got the Pink memo for Maddy girl's birthday party.

I think it took 5 or 6 times to finally get a photo of her in this adorable snowman hat.  Most of the takes looked like this!

 Or like this!  Such a squirmy butt!

A budding artist~

Tickle, tickle, I wish you could hear her giggle and laugh when they play like this!
She is fascinated by his beard~

Our Handsome little guy- Mason, will be 3 years old in August. 
Mason told his Papaw that he wanted to go to the "museum for animals."  So - we took him to the Atlanta zoo! 

He is SO much fun to play with! He makes me laugh and laugh he is such a sweetie!
Petting Zoo's are the most fun places to visit with a toddler!

Mason absolutely LOVES trains.  He could not wait to ride this little train at the Atlanta zoo.  It was his most favorite thing that we did the whole day!

I think we could have just stayed on the train all day and he would have been happy!  He likes to snuggle with his gb and we read Thomas the Train stories on my IPAD.

Mason also loves airplanes  - (just like his Papaw).  Don't have any photos here - but we always go to the playground at the airport so that he and his Papaw can watch the airplanes.

  Mason's Christmas gift from his Papaw!  The look on his face was priceless when he first saw this!  It took him about 10 minutes to figure out how to drive it and then he was OFF!  It goes 3 miles an hour~~

It's a guy thing~~

Our Christmas picture with our favorite little boy.  I'm telling you it is SO hard to live 8 hours away from this little guy! 

 And -- our Maddy girl.  Maddy was 3 years old just last week!  

She is all about posing for pictures!  

Maddy adores Keri Beth.  She says, "baby Keri Beth is my cousin.  I'm going to give her kisses and hugs!"

 Remember when I couldn't get Maddy to hold still for a picture?  She is ALL about the picture taking now! 

Are these not the biggest smiles you ever saw?

Celebrating Maddy Girl's "Big 3" birthday party last week.

Smiling so big in her pretty little dress on Christmas Eve~

Maddy had the "tearing the paper off the packages" down to a fine art this year.  (Keri Beth was not so sure about it all.  She mostly liked to play with the empty boxes this year!)

  Have you ever!!!  Can you say PRISSY!!

She makes me laugh~

They BOTH make me laugh~

This is one of my favorite Christmas pictures taken at our Christmas Eve gathering.  Both of the girls sitting on Keri Beth's Mommy's lap.  

ALL my pretty girls~~

"Oh NO"!  (Her gb taught her to say that!!)

Maddy's favorite toy this Christmas - was baby Keri Beth!

Remember ALL those Christmas cookies we had at our Christmas Eve dinner?  Little fingers kept stealing them off the plates!

Aren't these shoes so funny!  Maddy loves shoes just like her Auntie Vicki does!  (I think they look like the ones that Dorothy wore in "The Wizard of Oz"!)

Yep- we stripped them down after the pictures ~~~!
Can you believe how big our babes are getting! Thanks for letting me brag a little bit about our precious little people.  


Coming up next - my first give away of the year.  Something to warm your soul for the winter's chill - (and a little bit of Vera too!)

I love you all!