Monday, December 19, 2016

Festive Christmas


"Be merry all, be merry all,
With holly dress the festive hall;...
To welcome merry Christmas."
-William Robert Spencer

During this special time of year, I'd like to share with you some very special images of festive Christmas decorations in Tennessee and North Carolina-

Christmas Wreath in Jonesborough, Tennessee

Festively decorated Christmas Window at Pie Sensations in Columbia, Tennessee 

Also at Pie Sensations

A Carriage Decorated for Christmas at Homestead Manor in  Thompson's Station, Tennessee

Collection Box at Homestead Manor

"Let us remember that the Christmas heart is a giving heart... that thinks of others first."

Christmas Tree in Franklin

"O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, How lovely are thy branches!"
-Traditional German carol

With Mike and Betty During Their Christmas Open House in North Carolina

A Decoration at Mike and Betty's

"Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful."
-Norman Vincent Peale

"Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love!"
-Hamilton Wright Mable

Shop Window in Franklin, Tennessee

"Perhaps the best yuletide decoration is being wreathed in smiles."
-Author Unknown

(Also, remembering my father, whose birthday was December 19)

Positive Thought: "May you have the gladness of  Christmas which is hope;
                                 The spirit of Christmas which is peace;
                                 The heart of Christmas which is love."
                                 -Ada V. Hendricks
Thanks for visiting! Until Sunday, January 1, 2017, Becky

Sunday, December 4, 2016

A Fall Celebration in Tennessee

Greg and I had a wonderful two-day fall celebration a few days ago when we went to East Tennessee to celebrate Thanksgiving with some of our family.

When we got to our destination, Jonesborough, Tennessee, it was time for supper, so we asked our B&B host to recommend somewhere to eat, and he suggested a new restaurant in town, "The Black Olive." We were so glad he did since the food was delicious!

Chicken Primavera from "The Black Olive"

After our meal, we went to the "Blair-Moore House" in historic downtown Jonesborough where we were spending the night.

This B&B has been highly rated by "Southern Living" magazine, and there are several other accolades, as well. Greg and I will have to agree, this is one of the best places that we've ever stayed!

There's even an excellent short "PBS" documentary on "Facebook" about "Blair-Moore House" which tells the history, etc. of the house that you can access from the "Blair-Moore House" website. (See website address below.)

The innkeepers renovated and beautifully decorated the house themselves.

Everything is so authentic to the period.

An artist friend of the innkeepers painted the primitive mural above on the stairway wall.

Our beautiful room even had a canopy bed which was a first for Greg and me.

There were even scrumptious chocolates by our bedside. They were handmade in Jonesborough by "Earth & Sky Confections."

Speaking of food, the next morning's gourmet breakfast was also a special treat-

The fresh fruit with dip was terrific, as was the French toast, bacon, potatoes, and more.

"...What might be the world's best breakfast"-"Southern Living" magazine

One of the Four Adorable Resident Dogs Asleep on One of the Dining Chairs

After breakfast, Tami Moore, one of the inn keepers who also cooked our wonderful breakfast, showed us some of the pieces her talented husband, Jack, had made for the house. He even has his own workshop on the grounds where he makes his quality wood pieces.

Tami is talented herself. Besides being an excellent chef, she is also an artist who does paintings, and...

she makes lovely jewelry to sell.

Me, relaxing outside the "Blair-Moore House," with thoughts of, "How soon can we come back?"

"Blair Moore House"
201 West Main Street
Jonesborough, TN 37659

While our stay there was a wonderful experience, it was time to move on to our next destination...

Betty's, for a fantastic Thanksgiving dinner!

We all pitched in and brought some of our favorite things for the meal. 

"Eat, drink, and be thankful."

Greg, Getting Dessert-Yum!

The family cat, wishing at the moment that he were an indoor cat instead of an outdoor one.

We all had a wonderful time together, and we're planning our next get-together for December.

Positive thought: "Today be thankful and think how rich you are. Your family is priceless, your time is gold, and your health is wealth."
Thanks for visiting! Until Sunday, December 18, Becky

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Thoughts About Food As Thanksgiving Nears


As Thanksgiving nears, thoughts of luscious food, not surprisingly, become more prominent. Visions of Thanksgiving turkey with cornbread dressing and pumpkin pie dance in our imaginations.

Mama always had the most wonderful Thanksgiving meals. She was a chef extraordinaire! In addition to the above-mentioned food, she'd also have sweet potato casserole, cranberry casserole, mashed potatoes with gravy, fresh green beans, and homemade dinner rolls. (No brown-and-serve rolls for her!)

Since I'm discussing good food on this post, I thought I'd share with you a special restaurant that Greg and I recently visited in East Tennessee.

Last month, Greg and I were on a trip which took us right through Fountain City (which is actually a part of Knoxville). Suddenly, I happened to think about a co-worker telling me, several years ago, about a restaurant, Litton's Market & Restaurant in Fountain City, that had great food, including hamburgers.

When I mentioned hamburgers to Greg, I said the magic word because he dearly loves them, especially cheeseburgers, and so, of course, we had to go and find Litton's.

And, here it is-

Litton's is a casual place with a good atmosphere-

Imagine being here with your favorite people or special person.

The food is great!-

Chicken salad sandwich, anyone?

And, the cheeseburger did not disappoint! Greg said it lived up to its reputation.

Here's the proof of how well-liked Litton's hamburgers are. (This is just one of many accolades hanging on the wall at Litton's.)

In addition, Litton's also excels with their desserts. In fact, according to "TripAdvisor," Litton's is "ranked #1 of 40 'Dessert in Knoxville.'" (Also, Litton's received a "Certificate of Excellence" from TripAdvisor.") 

Here's one of Litton's...

many yummy desserts.

We're looking forward to making a return visit soon!

Litton's Market & Restaurant
2803 Essary Dr.
Knoxville, Tennessee 37918
(865) 688-0429

*The pretty fall pumpkin decoration above is at Merridee's Breadbasket in Franklin, Tennessee. I wrote a blog post about it on 8/3/14, entitled, "Merridee's Breadbasket Is a Favorite." (You might want to check it out!)

Thanksgiving chuckle: "An optimist is a person who starts a new diet on Thanksgiving Day."
-Irv Kupcinet

Helpful hint: Cracker Barrel Old Country Store has an excellent traditional Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving Day.

(The above Thanksgiving sign is from another really good restaurant, Farmers Family Restaurant in Columbia, Tennessee. For more info, please see my 4/28/12 blog post, "Farmers Family Restaurant.")

Positive thought: "Give thanks for unknown blessings already on the way." -Native American Saying
Thanks for visiting! Until Sunday, December 4, 2016, Becky

Sunday, November 6, 2016

A North Carolina Adventure

A few weeks ago, Greg and I went to beautiful Western North Carolina to meet some of our family members for a fun weekend. It was a place we'd been before, Lake Lure, but each visit is different, an adventure. I wrote a blog post about our visit last year. It is entitled, "Lovely Lake Lure, North Carolina" (7/5/15).

We spent the night again this year at the fabulous "The 1927 Lake Lure Inn & Spa"-

Luckily, the next day, we got to see an arts and crafts and crafts show on the grounds of the inn.

There were some talented artists at the show...

including Darcy. Beautiful job!

After the show, we met with our family for lunch at a fantastic place, "Larkin's on the Lake."

Mike and Greg in Front of Larkin's

We really enjoyed visiting with everyone.

The food was absolutely delicious!

The view was spectacular. What a beautiful day!

On the way back home, we briefly stopped at nearby Chimney Rock, North Carolina which has some interesting shops to explore-

And some interesting things to see-

(That's why I love traveling. You just never know what to expect next!)

This is a tourist place that's named for the large rock that's shaped like a chimney that sits high above the small town.

We decided that on another trip, when we had more time, we'd come back to Chimney Rock to visit more shops and to perhaps go to the top of the Chimney Rock itself. There should be spectacular view from there!

How to be happier and more positive: Do something fun like visiting somewhere different. It doesn't even be have to be very far away. It's amazing how many fantastic adventures await us near our own hometowns!

Positive thought: "Life is meant to be abundant in ALL areas..."-"The Secret"
Thanks for visiting! Until Sunday, November 20, 2016, Becky

Monday, October 24, 2016

Love "The Loving Pie Company"!

Once fall arrives, one thinks of warm, tasty food and and drinks.

I have a wonderful restaurant to recommend that has both of these-

If you love warm, hardy food, especially pies, as I do, this is just the place. "The Loving Pie Company" serves only pies, both savory and sweet.

Upon the recommendation of a woman we know, Greg and I went to Nashville a few weeks ago, just to visit this restaurant, and we weren't disappointed!

The decor is attractive-

The savory pies are great!

Might we suggest the "Shepherd's Pie" which has "local ground beef sauteed with onions, peas, and carrots, then topped with homemade mashed potatoes. always gluten free," to quote the menu.

And, for dessert, there'a a large array of "Sweet Slices," such as-

a fall specialty, "Salted Maple Walnut Pie, " one of the very best desserts I've ever had in my life!
(Photo Courtesy of  "The Loving Pie Company")

Greg had the "Red Velvet Chess Pie" which would be especially tasty accompanied by one of many beverages they serve-

"The Loving Pie Company" has been favorably mentioned in several publications-

It's "# 11 of 40 bakeries" in Nashville on "TripAdvisor."

And, it's easy on the pocketbook when it's time to pay-

We're looking forward to a return visit, and we might even enjoy our pies outside next time-

Kudos to the talented owner of  this wonderful restaurant-

Chef Suzanne Loving
(Photo Courtesy of "The Loving Pie Company")

"The Loving Pie Company"
2806 Columbine PL
Nashville, TN 37204

Today, my recommendation for being happier and more positive is in the form of a quote from "The Secret"-"You can change your emotion thinking of something joyful, or singing a song, or remembering a happy experience."

Positive thought:

Thanks for visiting! Until Sunday, November 6, 2016, Becky