Tuesday, July 29, 2008

out of town until August 5th

I'll be out of town until August 5th. I will try to post while I'm gone, but please forgive if it's not every day. But I'll be back soon - so don't go away.

seeking shade in summertime

Keeping cool in Georgia Summertime can mean many things. Mostly it's air conditioned comfort in front of the TV. Then there's shopping in the air conditioned mall, watching the latest blockbuster at the local theater, splashing around in the pool - anything to beat the 90+ degree heat. But what would we do if we didn't have these cool havens??

There's always Mother Nature's air conditioning. That would be sitting under a tree, in moist shadows, feeling the breeze on your face. Close your eyes now and listen for the cricket's song, the slight rustle of leaves as a squirrel scampers away, the buzz of a dragonfly. Savor the smell of new mown hay and the moss covered rocks. Ah-h-h-h, Summer in the South.

.....now it's time to head over to the deli for some chicken salad sandwiches and iced tea....
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Monday, July 28, 2008

at the Georgia Mountain Fair

The Georgia Mountain Fair in Hiawassee, GA, is a sprawling event on acres of wooded land. Artisans from many states demonstrate various talents including basket weaving, pottery, painting, sewing, metal and wood working - and the list goes on and on. This is a replica of a cabin which might have been found in the North Georgia mountains many years ago. It sits among several other period buildings - including the necessary outhouse.
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Sunday, July 27, 2008

a moment in time

Dragonflies are luminous creatures flitting about - here for a second, then gone. I captured this one perched on a twig at the edge of a lily pond. Its body appeared almost metallic in the sunlight. We can see marvelous sights if we just stop for that special moment in time.
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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Cherokee Days of Recognition

Cherokee Days of Recognition is coming up next weekend on August 2nd and 3rd at Red Clay State Park. If you've never been to a pow-wow nor seen Native American dancers, you've missed a great opportunity. You'll find storytellers, leather workers, basket weavers, herbalists, and lots of good food. Finding a Native American festival this Fall is something to explore.
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Friday, July 25, 2008

cool Summer picnic

This is a little park in Tunnel Hill, GA, named in honor of Harry Griffin - a longtime resident. This photo was taken just after sun up on July 24th. The dew covered grass appears blue in the shadows, but you can see the sun breaking through the trees promising another hot Summer day. Every year there's a "Rubber Ducky Race" at the creek. Great fun!! Stop in and see us sometime!
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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Joseph E. Johnston

This is the only known statue of Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston. It's located on Hamilton Street in downtown Dalton, GA, overlooking the business district.
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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

if you build it, they will come

Birds paint the sky in endless hues as they fly along their Spring routes. Finding housing for their new families is important, so any structure that features safety is satisfactory. This old bird house has seen countless occupants over the seasons. This year its fledglings are almost ready to take to the sky, painting as they fly.
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

preservation - not destruction

All to often, in the name of progress, older buildings are torn down and replaced with more modern structures. These shops are on Hamilton Street in Dalton, GA, and are a wonderful example of historical preservation.

The Book Nook was Ruth's Dress Shop in the mid 1950's - I'm not sure exactly how old the building itself is. The original floors are still there, highly polished and with the familiar 'creak' from years gone by. The Yellow Bird was once a shoe store with its large front windows and inviting double glass doors.

The allure of Southern towns can be seen if you will bypass the sprawling malls, and seek out the personalities of both the historical buildings and the people who love and care for them.
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Monday, July 21, 2008

Battle of Tunnel Hill

These reenactors participated in the Battle of Tunnel Hill in September of '07. The meadow was still under a blue haze from cannon fire. The weekend after Labor Day is the annual Civil War reenactment in this small North Georgia town. Plan to join us this year, sip some cold lemonade and learn about the heritage of our forefathers.
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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Western and Atlantic railroad tunnel

This historical marker is beside the rail crossing in Tunnel Hill, GA. About 30 trains go by each day, of course depending on the days schedule.
Click on the image to read the entire story.
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Saturday, July 19, 2008

smell the morning glories

We like to think that here in the South, we live a slower more laid back life. That should mean that we take the time to "stop and smell the roses". Sometimes we do; sometimes we don't. For years my parking place in the post office employee lot was the same. Day in and day out I parked there, rushed in and started my day. Then one Spring morning, I noticed that "SUDDENLY" there was a delightful forest of cattails, morning glories and bees not 10 feet from where I had been parking!! After my discovery (it had been there all the time!), I slowed down to investigate the other world just outside the parking lot.
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Friday, July 18, 2008

98 degrees in the shade

Summers in the South can be sweltering. Temps hover around 98 for days on end and the humidity can be just as high. There's just no relief to be found - and it's still 98 degrees in the shade. This photo was taken several years ago, during the hottest part of August, at Audubon Acres in the East Brainerd area of Chattanooga, TN. So far this Summer we haven't had many days in the upper 90's. But there's still August.
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Thursday, July 17, 2008

sleepy little Southern towns

Dotted all along Southern highways are sleepy little towns, just out of sight of busy interstates. Life goes on as always. Some folks are still farmers like their grandfathers before them. Others are shopkeepers like their fathers. Still others are lawyers and some computer geeks. Just plain folks living in the South.

But you may not meet any of them unless you exit the fast paced thoroughfares criss-crossing the South. This is part of Tunnel Hill, GA, with some of its 150+ year old buildings still being used. It's just 3 miles off I-75 and right on Highway 41.

The folks are friendly. Stop in and visit over a glass of sweet tea.
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

the old swimmin' hole

On Saturday, July 21st, I set up my painting easel at South (or East depending on who you ask) Chickamauga Creek. I was catching the morning light, putting it to canvas, and watching people strolling along the path. Several folks stepped off the walkway and chatted about my painting, the weather, etc.

One older gentleman told a story of how he learned to swim "right over there" when he was a little boy. He said that "the old road crossed the crick here" as he pointed to the stream's flat bottom. Upon looking closely, I could see the perfect place for wagons to "ford the crick" on their way to market in downtown Ringgold, GA.
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Tunnel Hill historical marker

I hadn't intended to concentrate on Civil War history. But there's just so much information found on roadside historical markers, I thought I'd post a few that are located in the Tunnel Hill and Dalton, GA, area.
Click on the image for high resolution.
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Monday, July 14, 2008

Pure Oil in the good old days

The Pure Oil company, many years ago, sought to standardize their stations with a recognizable style for the traveling public. This one is located on Wall Street (Highway 41) in Calhoun, GA. The blue and white English cottage motif was the trademark for Pure Oil's clean, safe filling stations. Gas probably cost around 15 to 20 cents per gallon then. The good old days.
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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Confederate Hospitals and Ringgold Courthouse

This courthouse sits in Ringgold, GA, just across Nashville Street from the wedding chapel - see post from yesterday.

In front of the courthouse is this historical marker with information about Confederate hospitals in the North Georgia area. If you click on the image, you'll be able to read the information.

I've posted several photos having to do with the Confederate cemetery and hospitals, and which reference the Civil War. This is done because of pride in my heritage. I love living in the South.

But I also remember that everyone who died in the Civil War ---- they were ALL Americans.
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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Biggest Little Wedding Chapel in the South

This is the Ringgold, GA, wedding chapel on Nashville Street. Weddings, complete with decorations and music, are offered. It's right across the street from the courthouse so everything is convenient.

My sister-in-law was married there. So was Dolly Parton in 1966.
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Friday, July 11, 2008

Men in kilts

You may wonder what men in kilts have to do with the South. Many Scots and Irish folks settled in the Carolinas in the mid 1700-1800's. The Carolina mountains were very similar to their beloved highlands of home. Throughout the South you can find countless Celtic festivals and Highland games. If you've never been to one of these events, you'll be amazed at the wonderful Scotch eggs, shepards pies, tartans, family heraldry, music, dance - and endlessly friendly people.
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Thursday, July 10, 2008

Confederate Cemetery in Dalton, GA

These photos show the Confederate Cemetery at West Hill in Dalton, GA.
Click on the photo to read the inscription.
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Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Nothing but Chirping

On this very early Georgia morning, nothing could be heard except the chirping of crickets, birds and frogs. I guess frogs croak, don't they?? Anyway, it was so very quiet, before 7:00am. Folks hadn't yet started out for work and there was a pause between trains carrying their goods North and South, East and West --- an ideal time to reflect on the wonders of North Georgia.
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

NASCAR in the South

I guess almost everyone knows that NASCAR started in the South - with good ol' boys running moonshine. Super speedways are the big ticket items now, but not too long ago NASCAR stars raced on smaller tracks around the South. This 1960's photo shows (left to right) Marty Robbins, Red Farmer, Freddy Fryar and Bobby Allison at Boyd's Speedway just outside Chattanooga, TN. Recently Boyd's Speedway has reopened with standing room only races on Friday nights. Ya'll come to see us!!
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Monday, July 7, 2008

Who? Where? When?

This photo is furnished by Bradley Putnam, the unofficial historian in Tunnel Hill, GA. There is a mystery of who these men are, and when and where the photo was taken. It may have been somewhere in Dalton, GA.
There's a moral to this story, too. ALWAYS be sure to date the reverse side of your photos. And it helps to also make note of who's in the photo and where it was taken.
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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Southern Belle Princess

This is Haleigh. She's a Southern Belle Princess.

All women born in the South, young or old, are Southern Belles. However as we get older and "grow up", we forget the childhood we've left behind and we focus on the here and now. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could take a few moments - just occasionally - and relive those butterfly mornings when we were, indeed, a Southern Belle Princess?????
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