Thursday, October 31, 2013

Have you ever picked cotton?

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I love where I live and this time of year when the cotton is ready to pick and the fields are so white and pretty. The fields remind me of  the huge cotton field  next to my grandmother's house when I was a little girl. Wanting to teach us the value of hard work one time my grandmother decided we all should pick some cotton and earn some money. What I thought would be fun was back breaking hard work with ants and gnats everywhere. Wish I remembered how old I was when this happened.  I didn't earn enough money to buy an ice cream cone.

I also love the heirloom pumpkins. They have so much personality. The one in the center is a peanut or double ugly pumpkin. The blue gray one is called Jarrahdale. I believe the others are called cinderella pumpkins. I did a post featuring heirloom pumpkins back in 2011 here.

 My grandmother made this quilt and it came into my mind it would be fun to remember her with a fall table in a cotton field. She has been gone for many years now but she lived to be 98!
Another ride out in the country during a perfect fall day that was so memorable for me can be viewed here.
Isn't this a pretty field of cotton? Tell me about any experiences you have had picking cotton. Peanuts are grown in my area of south Alabama also. I've just given myself an idea for a blog post next peanut picking time. They have already been harvested this season.

Linking to: Oh, the Places I have been, Open House Party Thursday, Be Inspired this fall, Inspire Me Tuesday and Seasonal Sundays.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Assisi, Italy ~ The birthplace of St Francis of Assisi

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Here we are headed to Assisi on our Insight "Best of Italy" Bus Tour.
We arrive in Assisi and check into our hotel. Giotto is a name we will hear again concerning the history of Assisi.

A pic from the bus as we approached the Umbrian medieval town of Assisi.
Assisi is a medieval town in the beautiful Umbrian region of Italy. It is the birthplace of St. Francis of Assisi. Think about Assisi and when St. Francis lived. Read about his life here.
Via google images

Via Google images. Basilica of St Francis.


The Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi was completed in 1253.



Via google images of interior of Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi. We were not allowed to make pics of the interior. I procured this from Google. The frescos of artist Giotto are astonishing. You can google frescos of Giotto and see many of the amazing images. The atmosphere of the basilica was respectful and reverent.


Cross bow competition in medieval costumes.






Shops in the town of Assisi.
Boor meat is popular in the area.
We were in Assisi right before the Pope's visit.
The walled town of Spello near Assisi. Entrance would be closed at night.
We were given an opportunity to visit Spello , a medieval roman town near Assisi. I was blown away by the age of this ancient town.

Ancient Roman road.

Ancient roman pipe.
A
Roman well.


Ancient door.


Typical italian men in conversation.
Current residents out for a day in the park.

 Can you grasp the age of these streets? Also the incline of walking to the top of the town was challenging.
In ancient times the walled city gate was closed at night but a water source was available outside the gate for travelers. The water spiquot is still in operation today.




I hope you have been impressed by the beauty of Umbria, the significance of the life and work of St. Francis and the age and amazing structures that still remain in Assisi and Spello. Next stop, Sorrento and Capri.

Previous posts of Italy may be viewed here: Rome.....the eternal city
Venice and the Magic of Serenissima.

Joining Oh, the PLACES, I have been, Wow Us Wednesday's, and Open House Party Thursday .

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Blessed Sunrise and God's FAITHFULNESS

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Our creator is faithful to give us light each day as the dawn occurs faithfully each day. It is a constant in our lives that we take for granted so often. It has the same effect but is different each day just like the sunset. So very beautiful and different but the same each day. The gorgeous colors and patterns are made by the Master artist. May the awe of His creation point us to His Majesty.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Venice and the Magic of Serenissima

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This is what the starting point looked like as we boarded several small boats. We never saw how our luggage traveled. When we arrived at the hotel later our luggage was in our rooms.
We rode from the mainland on private launches similar to this on the Grand Canal. My mind was racing with excitement and there was so much to see. You can read about a city but being in Venice  and seeing the sites for myself was a thrill for me.

The cruise ships are huge that are cruising by.
St. Mark's Square is full of people and many pigeons.

The Doges Palace with its gothic architecture made of pink and white marble was the seat of the Venetian government and home to the ruling duke or doge for 400 years. The doge lived with his family on the first floor.

You can view a fabulous panaroma of San Marco Square here.




The water front side of the Doges Palace. Stunning architecture with gorgeous  quatrefoil  on this beautiful palace.



The statue with the lion was our tour groups meeting place. Do you see the green umbrella? Guides use umbrellas to have their groups gather around to  go to the next activity. We heard the familiar phrase, andiamo ( 'ahn-DYAH-moh) which means "let's go" often.
The clock tower was built in1496! At the top of the tower there are bronze men ( Moors) that swing their clappers together chiming on the hour.



St. Mark's Basilica is exquisite and huge. More detail in the next picture.


 Saint Mark's Basilica with gorgeous mosaics.

The ultimate excitement was our gondola ride on the watery streets.

 The venetian canals are romantic and the facades of the homes are decorated with beautiful flowers.
It is amazing to watch the gondoliers skill. 

Our gondola ride was magical with romantic songs being sung as we drifted beneath the bridges. You can see the Bridge of Sighs behind us. Of all times to get our picture made I missed photographing the famous bridge. Oh well, I made too many pictures anyway! According to Rick Steves, supposedly a condemned man would be led over this bridge on his way to the prison, take one last look at the glory of Venice and sigh. You can walk across the bridge from the inside by visiting the Doges Palace.

Later after our dinner we were again treated to a fairytale evening boarding water taxi's to view the Grand Canal and see all the palaces illuminated. Sorry for a blurred pic but keep in mind I am in a similar water taxi making this pic of some of our group.

This was so much fun I didn't want it to end.


Quite a nice 42nd anniversary present!

After our cruise we sat in one of the cafes adjacent to St. Mark's square listening to a live orchestra sipping a Bellini.  What a delightful evening it was!

I hope you enjoyed traveling with me to Venice. My next post will be Assisi and Spello and then onto Sorrento, Capri and Positano. Would you consider following my blog if you are not already a follower. Please tell me what your thoughts are about this post. Your comments mean so much.

You may view, Part 1 Italy Tour : Rome.....the Eternal City  here.

Linking to: Oh, THE PLACES, I have been, Wow Us Wednesdays,  Open House Party Thursday and Seasonal Sundays.

Other Italy posts:  Rome, Italy~The Eternal City
                              Venice and the Magic of Serenissima
                              Assisi, Italy ~The Birthplace of St Francis