Are You Ready For Summer?
Bring It On!
Where do I begin, folks?
Getting started with these updates is the hard part. If I was organized, I'd jot down nifty things as they occurred and you'd have a well ordered chronological account to peruse.
This will be stream of consciousness stuff again, a slice of life on the Blue Ridge Mountain from my perspective, all in one spot. Many of the images are linked to larger versions so be prepared to click the pic.
I had mentioned the Bloomery Plantation Distillery previously. I'm fascinated by the prospect of lemons actually growing in West Virginia, albeit in a greenhouse. Buds appeared on the young trees early in the Spring. Certainly no promises, but perhaps we'll see some fruit this year.
Hooray, the County's Museum opened in March. If you live in or are just visiting our locale, this is one of those must see destinations that puts all the rich history of our area in perspective. And NO, I didn't give the penny/farthing bike a whirl.
I hope you all had a GREAT St. Patrick's Day.
I did :)
I may have mentioned our local coffee roaster, par excellence, Black Dog Coffee. Brian Bircher, the entrepreneur behind this great biz, celebrated both his 50th Birthday and the plans for a retail outlet to augment his sales. His friends and fans had a grand time at the surprise party. BTW, Black Dog delivers locally and the product is available thru internet orders, too.
More of the area's wildlife: The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. Yep, there is such an animal. The cats and I are so grateful to be living in the woods.
Did I already mention the Mountain View Polo? If not, I'd say, "Polo. who'd have thunk it in Jefferson County WV?" Visit their website and then visit their facilities.
One of the first signs of Spring appears in March. The white flowering tree is the Serviceberry or Shad Bush. Read more about it at the link above.
And speaking of Spring, those Lemon trees at the distillery are showing signs of progress
BTW, tho I don't have firsthand knowledge, I'm told the product is superb-Yum!
Another sign of Spring. The pathways thru the Shannondale Springs area was rife with early beauty such as the Spring Beauty. Also, Toadshade Trilliums, Dutchmen's Breeches, Bloodroot and much, much more were in evidence.
I enjoyed a Happy Easter. Did you find all the eggs the EB hid?
Looking for a new image to head up the Shannondale Club Alumni site, I recalled the wonderful view originally created to sell lots on the Blue Ridge. It's just above Rebel's Roost on Shannondale Road.
Things have slowed considerably at the alumni site. We still accept photos and mementoes and and your webservant is still looking for a successor :). Only one long lost alumnus has checked in recently, Roger Anderson. Contact him and say, "Howdy."
Our litter patrol, The Blue Ridge Litter Lookout (BRILLO), continued its work AND so did the morons who trash our roadsides. This time 'round we concentrated on interior roads as Mission Rd has been "scoured" clean by regular outings of the "BRILLOpadders".
I've slowed down a bit on my task of scanning family photos. The next scheduled project-My Mom & Dad's trip across the country in 1937-is a work in progress with several suggestions on properly digitizing images pending. The first page, written in my Mom's beautiful script, is below. You will definitely have to "click the pic" to read it.
I've devoted a great deal of time to our watershed as a board member of the Blue Ridge Watershed Coalition. Our website is currently being constructed but we can be contacted on Facebook, if you're comfortable using that medium.
A major effort is underway to educate the public about the importance of watershed protection-preserving the quantity and quality of our most precious resource-WATER.
If you live in Jefferson County-Do you know your watershed? Look below.
The kitties: they like being together-albeit separate.
Back to that sour subject. The lemons are taking on a familiar shape. The young trees are not expected to bear mature fruit year but that won't keep us from hoping. We'll keep you informed.
Those Crazy, Beautiful Hummingbirds:
The Hummers were back on schedule and all three of this house's occupants were thrilled.
And on a more serious note, one of the Shannondale and Beyond members provided some photos and a chronology of the sad story Rufi, The Hummingbird.
THE STORY HERE
I mentioned Shannondale Springs, the once world famous resort over which our website has stewardship, courtesy of the County's Historic Landmarks Commission. The Friends of Shannondale Springs (FOSS) has continued-due primarliy to the efforts of our user shadowplay-to keep the ruins from disappearing into the undergrowth. In fact, we've been able to provide easy access for hikers and our invitation to those who are unable to make their way back still stands. Below are some photos coming and going to this wonderful destination.
Come On Down!
After an absence since Christmas I finally visited My Sis's again. It had been too long. I took some items from the house up-Beth's abode has become the official repository for much of the family's memorabilia. I had a great time. Beth is shown holding some needlework my Dad brought back from Japan in the late 1940s.
In other family news, I had a delightful chat with my lovely daughter while composing this missive. She's doing well in Bellingham WA and pondering a journey back to the womb of academia. GO FOR IT, Kiddo! My inimitable nieces, Abigail and Emily, continue to thrive on the West Coast and my Favorite :)Nephew, Gregg, is busy with work at WVU. Jessie's Great Grandsons, Carter & Cooper, just completed stellar performances in school.
Another visit to My Mom's BFF Katharine was made to extend well wishes marking her 100th birthday anniversary. My big "Sister" Marlean and I had a wonderful and poignantly nostalgic time talking with her about the old times.
Speaking of old times, I have some audio files with Jessie reminiscing about her early years. If any of my kinfolk would like to hear them, I could send along a DVD.
As I promised, there has no Rhyme nor reason to the order of the notes and images above. There's so much to say and I've only scratched the surface. In deference to the fast paced lives out there, it's long on pictures and short on text.
I'd love to hear from you. And you can keep track of happenings in my neighborhood by reading our forum and website. In the meantime, I'll be perking along and keeping occupied paying it back and forward simultaneously.
I love you all.
Your faithful correspondent,
Shannondale & Beyond
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