Saturday, October 29, 2011

All Hallows' Eve A.K.A. Halloween

(Enter, if you dare!)

"Litany for Halloween"

"From ghoulies and ghosties,
Long-leggety beasties,
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us."


Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays.  While we usually think that Halloween is for children, a large percentage of adults enjoy celebrating the holiday, as well.  In fact, Holloween is about as popular as Chritmas now.  Many stores are stocked with a great selection of costumes for every age group.  Halloween candy overflows the shelves.  Also, it's almost like Halloween every day on TV with the abundance of paranormal programs.

                                                        Halloween candy, anyone?

While Greg and I really haven't, in recent years, taken time out to observe Halloween, we're planning to do something fun this time next year, like visiting a "haunted" house or forest or going on a real ghost tour.  Doing things like this makes life so much more interesting.

When I was growing up, we always went all out for Halloween.

Halloween Memories:

We often had Halloween parties which included bobbing for apples, eating tasty refreshments like popcorn balls, and going through a "haunted' house in our den which Mama and Daddy had so painstakingly created for my brother and me and our friends.

One of our neighbors usually had "ghosts" floating (on a wire) through the air, complete with spooky music.

Another neighbor, as an adult, loved dressing up each year in a very professional-looking costume that she'd concocted.  On Halloween night, she'd just visit a couple of nearby houses, usually dressed as either an old hag or a menacing-looking old man.  She looked very convincing.  When she'd come to the door, we often didn't recognize her.  Once, as I was opening the door to give out candy, the neighbor, dressed in costume, lunged forward.  I screamed and ran, looking for Mama to save me!  The woman still laughs about that one until this day.

To get into the spirit of things, we all enjoyed wearing costumes as we gave out candy.

                                                 Retro-picture of Mama, Giving out Candy

                                                                 Yikes! A Black Cat!

Halloween Favorites:  

Horror Movies:
Becky's-"The Mummy" (1959) 
             "Rosemary's Baby"

Paranormal TV Shows:
"Ghost Hunters"
"Ghost Adventures"

Ghostly Story:
" The Legend of Sleepy Hollow"

Halloween Blog:  

                                               A Halloween Dessert for Some "Lucky" Diner 

Featured Photo:

                                                               Another Black Cat!

(This is, as far as I know, a genuine paranormal photo that I took when I was growing up.  There are a lot more where this came from!, as my husband, brother, and I all seem to have the uncanny ability of having ectoplasm, orbs, or other paranormal images show up in many of our photos!  Sounds like a great topic for a future blog post!)

Positive thought: Be a kid again! Keep your sense of fun alive.
Thanks for visiting!  Until next time (Sunday, November 6), Becky


Sunday, October 23, 2011

An Appalachian Autumn

I love stopping by the K & C General Store in Weber City, Virginia any time during the year, but it's especially nice in the fall with all of the colorful apples and pumpkins.  Besides those items, owners Richard and Jane Edwards will be glad to help you with other fresh produce, jams, jellies, homemade baked goods, Amish products, and more.

                    K & C General Store, Named for Owners' Grandchildren, Kayli and Coby

K & C General Store
139 State Line Circle
Weber City, Virginia 24290

I just recently came across this lovely little poem which I'd like to share with you.

"Listen! the wind is rising,
and the air is wild with leaves,
We have had our summer evenings,
now for October eves!"

-Humbert Wolfe

This poem sets the stage for the following images of fall here in the Appalachians:
(Photos by Greg and Becky Arnott)

Positive thought: Curl up with a good book of poetry (or even write your own!).
Thanks for visiting! Until next time (Sunday, October 30), Becky

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Gasthaus Edelweiss, a Taste of Germany

Wilkommen (Welcome!)

If you've ever dreamed of visiting Germany, Gasthaus Edelweiss is a great place to start, to give you an idea of what it's like to be there.  One of the meanings of the word "gasthaus" is a relaxed and cozy restaurant.
"Edelweiss," the second part of the name, is a white flower that blooms in the European mountains.

To me, Gasthaus Edelweiss means a wonderful place to dine in Weber City, Virginia.  It's as if this entire restaurant were magically transported from Germany to the spot on which it sits.  The outside is lovely with the unmistakable German architecture, accented with pretty blooming flowers in the yard.  The inside has a tasteful traditional German decor.  Even the lovely music is-German.

All this sets the stage for a fabulous meal.  (I'm almost running out of superlatives!)  The extensive menu includes the traditional German fare, plus.  The heavier, stick-to-your-ribs type of food is especially good for this time of year as the weather turns cooler.

Greg and I really enjoyed our meal.  He had the Zigeunerschnitzel (a pork dish with a spicy sauce) with homefries and a tossed salad.  I had the chicken cordon bleu (with Black Forest ham) which was out of this world!  It came with spatzle (a German pasta), and instead of the vegetable of the day, I opted for a tossed salad.  We each had a hard roll which Germans prefer instead of the soft rolls which most of us Americans are used to having.

Greg and I really wanted to try a dessert, but we were pretty full, so we decided to take one home with us-a piece of Black Forest cake.-Good choice!  We loved it.

Ingrid and Edwin Carter have owned and operated Gasthaus Edelweiss for 24 years.  They are an interesting and entertaining couple.  Edwin met Ingrid, a native German, when he was stationed in Germany while in service.  They just recently returned from a trip to Germany and England.  They said that they like visiting Germany in September, that the leaves are very colorful then.

                                                              Ingrid and Edwin Carter

Edwin laughingly told us that people have called the restaurant and asked to speak to either Gasthaus or Edelweiss!

Ingrid said that she was thinking about having Octoberfest soon, but she wasn't sure, since she was still experiencing jet lag from their trip abroad.  She indicated that if she did have Octoberfest, it would include a traditional German feast, maybe a buffet, with non-alcoholic beer.  There would be German decorations, music, hats, etc.  This all sounded like fun to us.  (If not this year, maybe next!)

                                               Long-time Customers, Jon and Jennifer Bays

So, in conclusion, if you'd like to have a simply delightful, unique dining experience, you might want to consider Gasthaus Edelweiss!

                                                   Who Can You Imagine Sitting Here?

Gasthaus Edelweiss
Weber City, Virginia
Open Thursday, Friday, Saturday, lunch, 11-2
Dinner from 5 by reservation  Call for group functions and parties.
Closed Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, & holidays

Just click on the link below to see Greg's and my latest photos on iStock:

Positive thought: Get out of the ordinary; do something extraordinary!
Thanks for visiting!  Until next time (Sunday, October 23), Becky

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Home Solutions (Change Your Home, Change Your Life)


I mentioned in an earlier blog post about the business Greg and I have, Home Solutions.  (Please see the June 5 blog post.)  Primarily, we do one day decorating and organizing.  Additional services may include non-toxic house cleaning, shopping for any needed home items (decorative or organizational), and providing our art prints or original art work, including pet portraits.

Our prices are reasonable and our work is guaranteed!

Here are a few before and after pictures of one of our most recent jobs:

We really appreciate testimonials from our clients.  The following are a few excerpts from some of those testimonials:

"I had no idea how to place my furniture...They rearranged some things, added a few touches here and there, and I love it.  They made me feel proud of my living space...Thanks..."  Arlene

"Becky and Greg are wonderful people and their work is great.  I would recommend to anyone to use them..."  Wade

"This creative couple are hard workers who see the job through.  I highly recommend them..."  Mary Ann

                                               Art Print of an Original Mixed Media Painting
                                                        (Copyrighted by Becky Arnott)

F. Y. I.: 
Home Solutions
Kingsport, Tennessee

Positive thought: Improving your home can help change your life for the better.

Thanks for visiting!  Until next time (Sunday, October 16), Becky

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Hobo Meal


Now that the weather is getting cooler, I'd like to share with you a favorite recipe of mine.  It is an easy-to-prepare, hardy dish which is called the Hobo Meal.  It was given to me by an older friend of our family who was a very good cook.  She said that she learned of the recipe when she was a Girl Scout leader.  (But, you don't have to be a part of the Scouts to prepare and enjoy this delicious dish!)

Hobo Meal

   ground beef patties
   tiny whole potatoes or regular potatoes, peeled and cubed
   tiny whole carrots or regular carrots, peeled and sliced
   sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
   celery, chopped
   onion, chopped
   salt, pepper, and /or other herbs

(Use as many or as few of the above ingredients as you would like, according to preference.  I vary them from time to time, according to what I have on hand.)

Wash all vegetables thoroughly before working with them.  Loosely place a piece of aluminum foil into a 13x9x2 inch metal pan.  Place the meat patties on the foil in the pan.  Put the onion on top of the patties.  Arrange the rest of the raw vegetables around the patties.  Add any spices and /or herbs.  Cover everything in the pan with another piece of aluminum foil. Crimp the edges of both pieces of foil with your fingers which will enclose all ingredients in the foil.  (This makes it all look somewhat like a turtle in its shell which is why some people refer to these meals as  turtles.)  Place the pan on the middle rack of the oven.  Bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes.  (When done, be careful opening the foil as the steam coming out of the opened foil can be very hot.)

You may serve this dish alone or with a salad and/or bread or whatever else you might like.

Positive thought: Enjoy your meal!

Thanks for visiting!  Until next time (Sunday, October 9), Becky