Snapshot #209

When Texas grandson, Jackson, comes to visit we always spend some time “thrifting” at antique and junk stores. Neither Studly Doright nor Jack’s sister, Dominique enjoy the activity, but yesterday afternoon they, along with our guest, Sophia, accompanied us to Havana to check out the local goods.

I didn’t have time to go through all the photos I took on our quest for the perfect thrift store find, but this piece caused each one of us to make a face and/or an exclamation of revulsion:

I’m calling it, “Ew! What’s Wrong with that Giant Creepy Doll’s Arms?”

I’m not sure what today will bring. Rain hampered outdoor activities yesterday, so we’re hoping for clearer skies on this Thursday.

Peace, people!

Lunch with my Cousin and a Night in LaGrange

Drive, drive, drive! That’s about all I did on Friday the 13th. I left my friend Nicky’s home in Kingsport, Tennessee, around 9:45 yesterday morning and drove to Knoxville to meet my cousin, Peggy, for lunch. Peggy is my second cousin. Her father and my grandfather were brothers. Both were handsome men married to attractive women.

Peggy and her two older sisters were the young women I looked up to as a child. All three were beautiful and well-mannered; whereas, I was a plain little girl with a tendency to rebel. Nevertheless, Peggy, who is three years my senior, was a sometimes playmate, and I have great memories of times we spent together in our younger days.

I’d lost track of Peggy for at least a couple of decades, maybe more, until a few months ago when she friended me on Facebook. After I’d accepted my friend Nicky’s invitation to visit Kingsport I began making plans to have lunch with Peggy in Knoxville on the way home.

Now I’m kicking myself because I forgot to get a picture of the two of us together. Damn. You’ll have to take my word for it, but Peggy is still beautiful and well-mannered. We did our best to catch up in the limited time we had to visit, but I need at least another week with her.

Once we parted ways I set my GPS to avoid major highways and the city of Atlanta on my trip home to Doright Manor. The resulting route took me on a scenic, yet curvy, roller coaster ride through Tennessee and into Georgia. I figured that once I’d gotten far enough south of the aforementioned Atlanta I’d reconfigure my settings to find the fastest route.

Back roads are fun, yet exhausting, and around 7:00 p.m. I decided to stop for the night in the town of LaGrange, Georgia. Now, I might’ve found the most perfect town in the world quite by accident. After checking into the brand new Courtyard by Marriott, I had a nice dinner in their bistro before setting out to explore the downtown area.

Directly across the street from my hotel was a park with a statue in the midst of a fountain.

Curious as to the identity of the statue, I crossed the street for a better look. I’d expected to see some Confederate war era general, but to my surprise and delight I discovered it to be a statue of General Lafayette.

According to GeorgiaInfo, an online Georgia almanac,

“Born at the Chateau de Chavaniac, Auvergne, France, on September 6, 1757, Gilbert Motier de Lafayette became at age 19 a major general on George Washington’s staff. He played a vital role in the defeat of General Charles Cornwallis at Yorktown, October 19, 1781, ending the American Revolution.

Later in France Lafayette was commanding general of the National Guard. Leader in the movement that gave France a republican form of government, author of the Declaration of the Rights of Man, and designer of the “Cocarde of Liberty” which he holds in his hand.

LaGrange, Georgia, was named for Lafayette’s home, the Chateau de LaGrange, on motion of Julius C. Alford, when this city was chartered on December 16, 1828…”

The statue and the surrounding park are a fitting centerpiece for this lovely town.

The First Baptist Church on the Square:

This is a museum of some kind. I’d have visited it if it had been open. Maybe on my next trip through the area I’ll have better timing.

Lots of interesting shops called to me, but again, I arrived too late:

I don’t think I’d ever seen a “Keep Off the Trees” sign before. It kind of made me want to climb them, rebel that I am.

I MUST visit this shop:

What a day, am I right? Lunch with a long lost cousin followed by a trip on scenic back roads, culminating in a stopover in LaGrange. I’m ready to be back home with Studly Doright and the cats, though.

Peace, people!

How I Spent Saturday Morning

Studly Doright has successfully slept more than four hours at one time for the past three nights. Hopefully this indicates that his nerve endings might finally be settling down after his back surgery. He woke up practically jumping for joy this morning, and hurried me through my shower and breakfast so I could accompany him on his errands.

His first stop was at a golf shop. Studly hasn’t been released by his surgeon to swing a club yet, but he likes to look. Then we went to a motorcycle shop to buy new grips for a bike he’s working on for the grandkids to ride. Motorcycles are much more fun to look at than golf clubs.

Afterwards I mentioned that I could really use a new pair of sandals. When Studly is in a shopping mood it’s good to put in a request.

The cats like them. They might slightly resemble their scratching post.

Peace, people.

A Metaphor?

Monday is laundry day. Now that there are just two of us in the Doright household the chore isn’t nearly as tedious as it once was. I still don’t love doing laundry, but I don’t mind it nearly as much.

Once the final load was in the dryer I drove into Tallahassee for a few necessities. Normally I avoid the big retailer (aka Walmart), but it was the nearest store that was sure to have everything I needed.

When I entered the store I was looking for just three items, so I didn’t grab a shopping cart. Can you believe how naive I still am at the ripe old age of 61.5? One doesn’t simply shop at Walmart without a cart.

As my arms became overburdened with just discovered “must haves” I began looking for an abandoned cart. As luck would have it, I found one just around the corner from the Preparation H aisle. Don’t ask, but yes, that was one of my necessities. Damned diverticulitis.

It didn’t take me long to realize why the cart had been abandoned:

That annoying intermittent sound (much louder in real life than in the above video) was my cart. The darned thing handled like a two ton tank that every few feet emitted an awful buzz causing fellow shoppers to wince and/or laugh out loud. A small child began crying as I approached.

I guess I could have abandoned the cart as its previous operator had done, but I decided to embrace it instead, quirky sound effects and all. As I wrestled my noisy cart around the store, adding milk and cat treats and plain yogurt and bananas and yes, Preparation H, among other things, I began to think of the cart as a metaphor for life:

“The road we travel isn’t always peaceful or smooth, but if you keep pushing, eventually you’ll get to lay down your load.”

Okay, that’s a crummy metaphor, but what are you going to do? Sue me?

Peace, people.

Rivertown Mercantile

On Thursday afternoon I drove the 45 minutes to the small town of Blountstown to get my hair cut and colored. My stylist, Genia Burke at Head 2 Toe, worked her magic and I look human again.

My trips to Blountstown are never complete, though, without a stop at Rivertown Mercantile. I’m in search of a bedside table for one of our guest bedrooms, and thought I might find one here. I didn’t find one that met my needs, but I enjoyed looking all the same.

I got a kick out of their sidewalk advertisement:

I love the displays of antiques and vintage items for sale.

On past visits I’ve bought some vintage botanical prints as well as some fun knick knacks and old books. Alas, I am still a bit puny and didn’t have the stamina to shop until I dropped. Actually I was a little worried that dropping might’ve been an unintended outcome, and I still had to drive home. I’ll be back in a month or so, and indulge myself further then.

By the way, I don’t receive any type of compensation for mentioning these businesses. I just like spreading the word.

Peace, people.

March Minimalist Challenge, Day 8

Shopping totes, so many shopping totes. Someone might need an intervention. It’s sad. Seriously. Stop!

How am I doing on my alliteration? On a scale of 1 to 10, I believe today only rates a 4. I’ll strive to do better tomorrow.

Minimalist Challenge, Day 13

Selected for purging today are twelve tops and one skirt, none of which have have been worn in more than a year. Some of these have been worn so rarely that they appear brand new.

Which begs the question, what was I thinking when I bought them in the first place? The two white T-shirts are a bit too tight across my chest. The striped top made me look like I was auditioning for a Where’s Waldo film, while the peach, apricot, and green tops gave my skin the respective hues of peach, apricot, and green. Not a good look.

And what’s with all the horizontal stripes? Maybe I was a zebra, or a referee in a past life. I’m betting on the zebra option. All of the above soon will be appearing at a Goodwill in Tallahassee.

Peace, people!

Minimalist Challenge, Day 7

Today wasn’t a very exciting purge, and it’s not going to free up much space in my closet; however, I’m not sure why I was hanging onto these seven shopping bags:

It’s not as if I was going to use them as gift bags. That would just be tacky. Right?

Back when I worked full time I sometimes carried my lunch in one of the small shopping bags, but I no longer have to do that. And while in the past I’ve used such bags to tote a change of clothes to the gym, I own a perfectly good gym bag. So these bags are going into the recycling bin unless someone can give me a good reason to hang onto them.

Peace, people!

Yesterday

Yesterday as I exited the Publix grocery store on Ocala Street in Tallahassee I saw a little boy, maybe a seven-year-old, playing on the sidewalk directly in front of the store. I spoke to him, something innocuous like, “Hey pal,” but he didn’t respond.

I looked around, but didn’t see any adults nearby. He seemed to be keeping close to the store, so I went on to my car. No sooner had I packed my groceries into my car than I saw a little blur dash behind me. It was the little boy running hell bent for leather through the busy parking lot towards an even busier street. This 61-year-old, out of shape grandmother took off after him.

Just as he reached the intersection a car turned into the Publix parking lot and with inches to spare missed hitting him. Without hesitating the child swerved back into the parking lot and just stopped, standing stock still. The car’s driver, a young college student, pulled over and the student’s mom got out and took the child’s hand.

I had begun calling 9-1-1, but so had she. Now that I was close to him I realized he most likely was autistic. Leaving the child in her capable hands I walked back to the store and found a manager and a clerk looking out into the parking lot. Figuring they might be looking for the little guy I asked and sure enough they’d been approached by an anxious mom who’d lost her kid while shopping. So I took them out to where the woman still held the child by the hand.

We watched as mom and child were reunited and the woman who had held his hand while I ran up to the store kind of fell apart for a minute. So did I.

“I thought my son was going to hit him,” she cried on my shoulder.

“Thank God for young reflexes,” I said, patting her on the back while shaking her son’s hand.

I honestly thought I was going to see this little guy go under the wheels of a car. Once back into my own vehicle I sat shaking before I could even start it up. His angels were working overtime yesterday.

And now, the Beatles. How’s that for a segue?

https://g.co/kgs/ckwySv

A New-to-Me Wine and Lucky’s Market

I’ve taken a bit of a wine break these past couple of weeks. The colder weather has been more conducive to hot teas and hot chocolate. Today, though, I was shopping at Lucky’s Market (a gem of a store) in Tallahassee and discovered a wine that seemed to call my name.

I like the Apothic red blends, but the aging in whiskey barrel gimmick was new to me and worth a try. The verdict? It’s smoky and deep and silky smooth. I might have found a new favorite.

More about Lucky’s–think Trader Joe’s without the hype, or Whole Foods without the hipsters. Lucky’s is no-nonsense, healthy foods, lots of products in bulk, a meat and seafood department that looks divine, and a section of beer and wine to rival any store in the area. I love their selection of local honeys and have been taking a tablespoon of raw honey a day as a defense against my allergies.

Please note I receive no compensation for this review. As usual I’m just sharing interesting and perhaps helpful information with my readers. Money? What’s that?

Do you have a favorite local shop? What makes it your favorite?

Have a wonderful day, and now more than ever, peace, people.