3/20/2017

{Weekend Wrap-Up} Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

My Cooper SIL & I have been talking about doing this for a couple of years, but we finally did it! Since we both have a birthday in March, we thought this would be a perfect month for a girls' weekend. Chattanooga was the perfect spot since it's halfway between both of our houses. The hotel where we stayed couldn't have been more perfect. We were able to park our cars there when we arrived, and didn't need them until we left on Sunday.
On Friday, we sat for a while & caught up, then we had to find some dinner. It was St. Patrick's Day, so we had to find an Irish Pub, and the hotel employee we spoke with had the perfect spot for us. 
At first, we sat in the pub, until we realized there was outdoor seating. We were able to escape the smoke in the pub, and, thankfully, it was warm enough to be very comfortable sitting outdoors. 
After we ate, we walked around for a bit and strolled into the Moon Pie General Store.The only thing I bought was some vanilla Moon Pie Coffee.  I love moon pies, but I knew if I bought something, I'd want to eat it. And, I've been doing well with not eating sweets...until Friday night. My SIL makes a wicked peanut butter cake, and she brought one for us. With a glass of cold milk, the cake was just amazing. We got back to the hotel, watched Miss Congeniality 2 and had our cake.
Saturday, we followed some friends' advice and ate at a popular biscuit place.
The line was long, but moved quickly. It was very worth it. They had maple coffee that was so good that we dropped back by that night to buy some to take home.
We strolled down to the Rivermart in the parking lot of the Tennessee Aquarium. We visited booths of some very talented artists. Our favorite booth was jewelry made from classic books. They had earrings, necklaces, bracelets. We were mesmerized and couldn't pull ourselves away. If you have a book-lover in the family, check out their Facebook page. These are some pictures of some of the other jewelry they offer. I'm not sure why I didn't get a picture of the book jewelry.



 There was also a lady that made jewelry out of hardware; it was beautiful. How she could look at a sprocket and know it would make beautiful earrings is beyond me. She has an Etsy shop, so go check it out.
We walked over to St. Paddy's on the Parkway and were instantly under-whelmed. The entry fee went to a good cause, but it was much smaller than we thought it was going to be. The most excitement I had was meeting Tank:
My SIL said he was unhappy because he had on a green tutu. Poor little thing! He was such a sweetheart.
Then, we saw these guys the night before, and they showed up on the Parkway:
There were bands on the outdoor stage:
And we knew there were going to be some inside, too, so we headed in The Honest Pint:
We were awed by the building:



 I ordered the same kind of beer I had before we came in, and was disappointed. My SIL ordered Harp, and was told that they were out. So, we ordered Guiness Blonde, and it was flat. I felt sorry for our waitress...she had a few tables upstairs and downstairs. We ordered a couple of appetizers, but were told that they were out of the dip. (And then my SIL saw someone eating some later.) All of that didn't deter us from sitting at the table for a few hours and enjoying some of the music. This was our favorite (Molly Maguires):
On our walk back to the hotel, we saw some interesting structures. The Dome:
Part of the First Methodist Church in 1881:
A random gate that my SIL noticed:
Eyes on a building. There's also a confederate statue on a fountain and a cannon in front of the building. This would appear to be a popular hangout with the college crowd.
My SIL noticed the tile on this building:
We ate a supper of biscuits & peanut butter cake (with milk, of course!) and watched a couple of episodes of Say Yes to the Dress. Overall, it was a pretty low-key weekend, but it was so nice to be able to spend time with my SIL...alone. Without the guys and without distractions.
Before I left Chattanooga, I went to Mass at the Minor Basilica, Sts. Peter and Paul. I saw the building as we were walking back to the hotel (it's across the street from The Dome Building), but I didn't realize that was it because it looks very non-descript on the outside. Oh, but inside!
 The altar
The 3 physical signs that a church is a "lesser basilica": 
 The first is the presence of the conopaeum — a silk canopy designed with stripes of yellow and red, traditional papal colors.  The minor basilicas also have the right to display the papal symbol as in the above picture (the crossed keys). 
The third is the tintinnabulum, or bell. It is mounted on a pole and carried processionally, along with the conopaeum, at the head of the clergy on special occasions.
 I'm not sure about this side of the altar. 
This side is pretty self-explanatory, especially if you're a Catholic!
 The stained-glass windows were designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany.
The Stations of the Cross:
 Kilgen Organ. The Basilica has had the same organist since 1960.
 As American Churches go, this one is pretty old: 1890. But, as in European Churches, it's always important to look up.
The Mass was different than what I'm used to: lots of chanting with Latin thrown in, and, during the Eucharist Prayer the priest had his back to the congregation. It was just amazing.

So...back to work tomorrow, but no kids, making it almost like a day off! 9 more weeks until summer break!

3/17/2017

{Friday Foto Friends} Painting & Moving

Friday already? Why do breaks always go by so quickly! I need a break to get over my break! It's been a very busy week. I've had a dr.'s appointment, mammogram (don't forget to get yours annually!), vet appointment, and car appointment. And, there has been a Mass for my daddy every day except for Wednesday. 
My brother carried this jewel down from the attic at my parents' house. Apparently we had been told to "get off our high horse" a lot! 😀
This is how my Sunday started. Yeah, it usually helps to put the coffee grounds in the pot when making coffee!
I spent Sunday afternoon painting 1 of the spare bedrooms and then putting it back together. This is what it looked like before I painted:
 
Why I agreed to allow YS have an orange room when we moved in is beside me! Luckily, it only took 1 coat of Kilz and another coat of paint to cover it up.
Excuse the mess on the beds...I haven't completely finished this bedroom! But, I spend Monday painting this bedroom and putting it back together. Here's the before:
Not as much of a difference from the other room, but the walls went from gray to "mushroom".
I saw this sign on Tuesday when I ran into the restroom at church.
Wednesday was moving day. Apparently, several years ago, I told my daddy that I wanted the piano. So, I scheduled the piano movers for a day during break, and Wednesday was the day. 1 of the guys told my brother & me that they move around 1200 pianos a year. I was shocked! He said they send about 50 a year to the dump, which made me sad. Hopefully it was that they were dump-worthy & it wasn't that the owners just didn't want them anymore. Anyway, getting the piano down the front yard steps was a little hairy, but they did it without any damage.
When they got to my house, they assessed the back and front entrances, and decided the back was the path of least resistance. They had no trouble at all getting the piano in the house.
And there she is. Eloise has a new home! I plan on taking piano lessons (something I've always wanted to do) very soon. I don't want her to be just a piece of the furniture. My mom saved her cake-decorating money to buy her over 40 years ago. We're not sure exactly when she bought it. 
If you're in the Knoxville area & need a piano mover, let me know. I'd highly recommend them!

That's it for the pictures for the week. I was able to relax Thursday and watch Time after Time on Hulu. Excellent show! Thanks to my big sister for making aware of it! 😘

I'm linking up with Deb at Breathing in Grace for todays Friday Foto Friends

3/10/2017

{Friday Foto Friends} It's a Challenge

I'm doing a little better about taking pictures through the week!
I'm joining Deb at breathing in grace for the link-up. Some of these ladies have incredible pictures, so go check it out!
 Last Friday after work, I went by the church and walked through the Outdoor Stations of the Cross. A parishioner built them for his Eagle Scout Project. 
I got a surprise in the mail last Saturday. 1 of my aunts visited this Texan-Danish town, and she sent me this recipe book. CH & I are putting this on our list to visit. I was thrilled to see Frikadella! 
I had to stop at the middle school on my way to school Tuesday to take a picture of the sun rising over the mountains. I wish I had my big-girl camera, but it looks like my phone did a decent job!
This is a picture of a cardinal I saw Saturday morning. They've been very vocal lately, and they're hard to see. This one was way up in a tree!
I'm participating in a Lenten Instagram Challenge. Catholic Sistas gives us a word each day, and we post a picture using that word. I cheated with "Grace"; I found a quote on Brainyquote to use. The picture for "trial" is mine, though. Oh, and for "Eucharist", I used someone's picture (with his permission).
Have a great weekend!

3/08/2017

The Perfect Wednesday Hodgepodge


Who else is loving Joyce's new look?  Mah-velous! Just mah-velous! And, she's decided to take next week off for the hodgepodge. It's almost as though she did it just for me, since I'll be on break!

1. What is one area of your life where you're a perfectionist? Is that a good thing?
My job. I think it's a good thing. It's horrible to go into a school behind someone who isn't!

2. What's something you find perfectly ridiculous?
Where do I even start on this one?  I honestly think social media is getting pretty ridiculous. I've really toned down just how much time I spend on it. I mostly get on Facebook to check my notifications; Twitter to post my blog posts. I'm very, very rarely on Snapchat (only when MS sends something). I spend most of my time with Instagram, but the new stories feature? That's ridiculous!

3. What's a skill you've developed by way of that old fashioned saying, 'practice makes perfect?
Playing the flute. I used to play for hours to perfect that skill. Now, I'm down to just playing for Mass, but I still practice; just not as much.

4. What's your idea of a perfect breakfast?
One that someone else makes & serves!  😲

5. What's a trip, holiday, vacation, or day outing you've taken that you'd rate a perfect 10? Tell us why.
Last summer's trip to South Dakota and Colorado was pretty darned close to a 10. Camping, National Parks, the Rockies, my sister...what else can I say?

6. What quote or saying perfectly sums up your life right now? If you can't do perfect, how about one that comes close?
Just living is not enough... one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. - Hans Christian Andersen

7. How would you spend $300 today?
When you think about it, $300 really isn't that much! I'd probably put it toward my credit card bill.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Ah, Spring Break is next week! I've got a busy week planned with appointments. I think I'm going to need a Spring Break to get over my Spring Break!

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