Great Smoky Mountains – Preview


I’ll write a whole post about the wonderful time I had in Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains last weekend with Jason and the other guys he’s touring with and their families. But…you’ll have to wait until next week. Sorry! Here’s a preview:

Phone Photo Friday


“Are those ‘fall’ leaves or just dead from the heat leaves?” my friend Brienne asked. True, it was in the 90’s when I took this photo yesterday ont he first day of fall. But cold weather will be here soon enough and I, for one, am enjoying this little burst of record heat.

First Day of Fall: Almost scarf weather!


Despite the calendar saying it’s the first day of Autumn, it’s still in the 90s for a few more days here in Nashville. (I’m not complaining; I love the heat!) However, fall is here and scarf weather is on it’s way! My patient and gracious mother taught me how to knit on Sunday afternoon. She had to fix, unknit and reknit for me many times but I’m happy to report that after 4 days, I’m getting it!

My scarf is now 4″ long! Only 43″ more to go! At this pace, I should be done around the beginning of November. Just in time!

Remember, I’m using this pattern from Pickles.

Fall Flowers & Foliage



While we were building mini greenhouses on Saturday, I couldn’t resist taking photos of some of our flowers and plants in their fall splendor. The succulent above seems to change colors for every season. I love the rusty orange-brown for October!


Lavender is still going strong. I love the frosty blue-green leaves against the purple buds. The smell makes me gag, though. 🙂


A couple of red azalea flowers still hanging on.


Monarch butterfly caterpillars enjoying our parsley.


I decided to pick the last of the basil and attempt to preserve it for cooking through the winter. Also, before chopping down the last of the zinnia bushes, I cut a few flowers to make two final vases.


In a random conversation with a stranger, I learned of a technique for saving and storing fresh basil that I decided to try. I cut up the leaves into small strips with cooking shears and mixed them in a bowl with extra virgin olive oil. Then I spooned the mixture into an ice cube tray and drizzled with more EVOO. Once they’re solid, I put the cubes into a ziplock bag. I’m hoping these basil-cubes will work! I LOVE fresh basil in my pasta.


Black bamboo: you are stunning. I love you.