A daily record of gratitude; from quilting to photography to a mix of technology, books, movies and the musings of life!

Welcome to my Blog of my daily gratitude and photo of the day!

Since January 1, 2012, my goal is to write a daily sentence or two (or paragraph or two) about gratitude of the day and to include one photo (at least) that I took that day (but will add others from time to time). It has definitely been a challenge most days throughout the past eight years, and welcomed the challenge again this year - 2020 - Covid and all. I hope you will continue the ride with me!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Newseum Day #2

I really like those 2day passes for a museum since who can go 6-8 hours at one time to see and read everything? The attention span simply is not there. But doing it over 2 days- doable!

After scoping out yesterday what we needed to see and do today, we seemed to be very efficient with our time and energy in covering the entire museum. Two neat things today were watching most of the Women's Soccer game vs. North Korea (USA won 1-0) on their big jumbotron, and Ryan doing a live TV report on the Washington Nationals (all while he wore his beloved Yankee cap)!


Monday, July 30, 2012

The Newseum Experience

Considering its the end of July, with my kids heading to school and camp soon, we are squeezing in some time with just the three of us. The unanimous choice was going to the Newseum that none of us has ever been before!

I am thankful we went down and liked it so much we are heading back there tomorrow morning (its a 2 day pass)! Way too much to take in during one afternoon anyway. I highly recommend this one, interactive and information galore!


Photo taken on the terrace of the building overlooking Pennsylvania Avenue.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

BBQ Bunco and "Apple" Pie, er Phones!

We had a lovely afternoon hosting some "Pheen" families (daughter's youth club soccer team - Freestate Phoenix); with a BBQ and Bunco for a fun get together.  I am thankful that we have remained in contact with some of the families from the youth soccer days, as everyone's lives get busy and move on, as to be expected, and try to get together several times a year when we can.

But the interesting thing to come out of today was the prolific presence of 9 iPhones amidst the modest crowd of 13!  They are certainly gaining in popularity just like baseball and apple pie!

Photo of the ladies today: Carol M, Alyssa Koz, Pat Git, Olivia, Angie Koz, me and Katie Git!

Second photo: 9 iPhones and 1 cookout!


Saturday, July 28, 2012


Trying to blog from phone. Not working right.

Sent from my iPhone

The Renwick Gallery

I am thankful to have been able to get to one more museum this summer; my favorite - The Renwick - for the 40 Under 40 Show.

Lots of great craft futures that featured forty artists born since 1972, the year the Smithsonian American Art Museum's contemporary craft and decorative arts program was established at its branch museum, the Renwick Gallery. All artworks were created since 9/11- for a new vision that changed the world that fateful day.

Photo of the doors of the Renwick. They are huge and just spectacularly beautiful.


Friday, July 27, 2012

Let The Games Begin

The world wide event is here again. Four years goes by super fast since the last one in Beijing. And despite all the politics and "corporate" agendas, it really is a spectacular event, and most folks would agree that the human interest stories with many of these hard-working athletes is the true spirit of the Games.

I am certain we will see triumph, disappointment and exciting feats of athleticism in the many sports that will keep me and sports fans around the world glued to their TV's during the next 17 days!

I hope London shows the world a successful Olympic Games and all athletes perform to the best of their abilities and God given talents!

On a personal note, a big shout out of Good Luck to Bridget Franek in the Women's 3000M Steeplechase in Track&Field, and safe travels for her family and friends heading to London to cheer her on!!!!

BSoleille! The bright side of London 2012!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Last Day at "Camp"

Besides the usual "camp classes" of biking and running/walking, swimming and beach time, I'm thankful that I got in some "retail therapy" as well with Jodie and her daughter Carmen. We each bought a little something while out on our excursion. (photo today of the three of us)

And lastly, when you go away to camp when you are 10 years old or even 50, there always seems to be an interesting cast of characters that you meet. This week was no different for Jodie and me. We met pool Dads' Teddy (wife Judy) and Bill; Nick from South Philly whom we met waiting on a bridge near Cape May while we were on bicycles; he in a big pick up truck with accent and all (and gave a complete description of the making of "Rocky" in 1976 in front of his Fathers' store - without a single question from us!); Otto and Sue from Colorado and our "favorite", JoAnn, the 69 year old dainty lady women's clothing sales clerk who rides the biggest Harley money could buy (her words). She also has several leather jackets and speeds on her Harley when she can get away with it! Too funny.

BSoleille! Finding the sunny side of "shore camp"!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


I enjoyed a nice run on the beach this morning, and loved a 17+ mile bike ride in the less humid but still salty air, but the R&R at the pool was the simple pleasure of the day! Reading a few chapters in a good novel then taking a dip in the water after "cooking" in the sun was totally refreshing - a great afternoon at "camp"!


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Ride to Cape May

After going to the Maryland and Delaware beaches through the years, and always wanting to take the ferry from Lewes, Delaware to Cape May NJ and never have, today Jodie Smith and I biked down from Avalon to Cape May on my first day of "camp". Thankfully we are in decent shape and started early enough to make it down and back before the really heated up temperature wise.

A ride around the town capturing the essence of the Victorian homes was sheer delight, and a good breakfast was just what we needed (plus lots of cold ice water) as well.

Photo in Cape May

Monday, July 23, 2012

Run Away from Home/Go to Camp

My college friends Jodie and Scot invited me to the Jersey Shore for a few days this week. After making dinner and chopping veggies and fruit for my people left at home, my "sports car" headed to Avalon for some fun in the sun.

After a quick swim in the pool (ocean tomorrow) and a seafood dinner with their extended family, the time was right to relax and catch up with the clan.

I am thankful the weather is going to be hot so we can pursue all the outdoor activities we want to do (like a long bike ride first thing in the morning) and the beach right on its heels!

BSoleille! The bright side of the Jersey Shore!
Photo of Jodie and me on the balcony.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Trash Can Saga

Every 15-20 years or so it seems like you need to buy a couple of unglamorous garbage cans. Thankfully, the big box hardware stores do not give a big selection and who needs that really. I would much rather buy a set of pretty dishes or a piece of furniture than garbage cans. But our county went to once a week trash pick up and we needed additional receptacles.

Interestingly, a few years ago all our cans were "stolen" and even filled with garbage. Strange! But my sister in law went to the BX and bought the one and only one we have been using since then.


Saturday, July 21, 2012

A New Bike

Today I purchased a brand new bike and I am just thrilled about it. Hopefully I can ride some good miles tomorrow sans rain. My current road bike is 25 years old and still works, albeit a little "creaky" so to speak, so this was a good investment in keeping myself fit!

I also broke down and got a new helmet (purple) so I can "retire" my Hello Kitty one (fits ages 4-7). I have a small shaped head and that was the kind that fit me best for the last few years!

BSoleille! The bright side of a shiny new bicycle, like winning one when you are 10 years old (I did)!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Yep, Thinking Like a Big Dog!

The 5lb. yorkie dog, Khloe, is rounding out her week with us, and it has been a good one for her and us (I guess if I could think like a dog, that is...).  She seemed to really enjoy the rhythm of a busy family and the two other dogs in residence (who are much bigger than her), and thankfully, worked her charm on them and fit right in from the start.  We had to get used to that "yorkie bark", a sharp piercing bark that definitely garners attention because you can't believe such a loud bark comes from such a small dog, but that's about it!  She's cute, loves to cuddle, and "knew her place" with the other dogs, what's not to like about that?  It will be a tough good-bye this weekend!

Photo of Lucky, Khloe and Lucy sitting pretty for treats at the end of the day!

BSoleille!  Woof-Woof!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Finished Floor!

After much deliberation on my part on whether or not to install a floating hardwood floor, I was strong-armed by my ever cautious husband to out source the job. I am thankful that I did because the two guys who installed the floor, Mike and Kevin, did a beautiful job and did it much quicker than I could have possibly done! Plus they had all their toys, I mean tools, to make the entire job look effortless (at least to me).

Photo of Kevin down the home stretch of the long hallway!

BSoleille! Finding the bright side of competent and timely craftsmen.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Roadside Stand

Nothing beats fresh produce from a local roadside stand providing everything tastes good! Local peaches have been walking after me for a few days since we bought some over the weekend but ate through them at lightening speed. So today I stopped at one in Millersville, MD and bought some things including succulent and delicious peaches.

Interestingly, the gentleman running the stand was very high strung over people touching his peaches and tomatoes that was quite comical to another road stand shopper and I that we just giggled along as we "shopped". He was especially upset with two young men who were slapping at the watermelons that he could barely finish our business transactions because he wanted to teach them how to select a good one without the obligatory slapping.

I thankfully drove away with my $11 worth of fresh fruit and vegetables and a big hearty laugh with all this guy's antics-just to buy some peaches, cukes and tomatoes!

Photo of the local road stand.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

From Morning Run to Hazy Sunset

For many years I ran between 3-5+ miles in the early morning hours like 6:00-6:30am. This was affectionately known as "the morning run". Then life with kids and late nights and just pure laziness on my part and that wonderful morning run was a thing of the past.

Well today I decided to resurrect that morning run and I'm glad I did because by 7:10am, the temp was hovering near 85 degrees! Plus when humidity is added in the mix my clothing was soaked through and through when finished (even my shoes were wet!)

Photo of a hazy Crofton sunset.


Monday, July 16, 2012

65 lb. Dog in 10 lb. Dog Bed

My week continues with dog sitting little yorkie Khloe, and thankfully, she is doing great with the other dogs in the house. But the funny thing is how the three of them interact with each other or not. As you can see from today's photo, Big Lucy pulled the cushion out of Khloe's dog bed and carefully tried to climb in to fit! They are also "stealing" each others toys-kind of like kids, as the toys are always better at someone else's house!


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Lemonade Forever Anyone?

Seeing these crazy signs that are oxymorons are fun and amusing whenever you see one.  Lots of them  circulate either through an email or on Facebook or Pinterest.  I found this one myself at Merriweather Post Pavillion last summer, and thought it would be a good post for a hot summer time day like today!


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Knitting 101

I have mentioned in previous posts how great my quilt guild is, and today I learned for the very first time how to knit and pearl. This was made possible through a generous and very talented guild member, Mary Nielsen. She gave a refresher to another guild member and for me, taught me from scratch. (I needed all the help I could get)

I must say I really like it. And you know how funny the brain works when you learn something brand new like a language or knitting, it can get hard and tedious in a hurry! But i think I'm on my way to a scarf for my first knitting project.

BSoleille! Finding the bright side of knit 3 and pearl 2!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Khloe the Yorkie

I am thankful I could help out a friend and watch her 5 lb Yorkie pooch for the week, as her original dog sitter could not do it So far so good here with Khloe and my two canines (we are only going into the second hour though!)

I bet at the end of her week with us she will be thinking like a "big dog" or mine will be thinking they are lap dogs too!

BSoleille! Finding the bright side of tiny pups and all their cuteness!

Photo of Khloe.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Summer Nap

Doesn't a summer nap sound delicious? After a day out in the sun and coming into a cool house to read a few chapters of a good book, it's really difficult to keep the eyes open. Its that big tidal wave of sleepiness that crashes over your head for an hour or so that recharges the batteries I love!

Photo of my son Ryan doing just that today. So much for getting through his 3 books for summer reading!

BSoleille! The bright side of a restful summer nap.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Mom&Daughter Day in DC

The summer is moving fast and our "to see" list has a few more items, but today my daughter and I were able to check off the Holocaust Museum. This very sobering place is a must see and read through if in the DC area. Living here we get caught up in our daily grind and forgo these wonderful museums, but I'm thankful we took the time to schedule a day and time to go down and take advantage of this one today.

Even the $25 parking ticket (parking kiosk did not dispense dash receipt and was documented) was not going to get us down!

Photo of Olivia near Washington Monument.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

No phone.....

No Phone, TV or Internet

Even though we were out of power last week due to heavy rain and wind storms, and that is annoying, but we were able to take warm showers and had water for our use. Today we lost our home connections to the outside world via phone, web, and TV and that's doubly annoying.

Right now I'm thankful for my 3G phone to connect to the rest of the world when needed, plus a technician will be out tomorrow to hopefully restore our service.


My photo today is my July BOM "Spangled Star". My sewing machine is back to work!

Sent from my iPhone

Monday, July 9, 2012

193rd Post Today!

So my title post today means that today is the 193 day of the year 2012, and I cannot believe I've been able to stick to my goal thus far!  Since I tend to think about what I plan to post during the day, it really walks after me until I do.

Today I'm thankful the weather cooled down enough for me to go out on an actual run around the parkway and it felt good.  And my photo today is from my archives from the summer of 2001, with Ryan, Olivia and my wonderful dog Wally (who passed away in 2007)!  This photo was one of my last pictures taken on my film camera - Canon AE-1 Program.


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Got the MVP Card!

Today we went over to the Landover MD, Wegman's alpha supermarket and had an early dinner in their uber hot bar and got "the card" for store discounts. Since a Wegman's is opening in our area soon we are all set now when that opens this fall!

By getting the store card we were entitled to a free grocery reusable sack and some olive oil they did not have in stock. Probably on purpose so we would come back, those clever marketers!

Photo of Bill and Olivia and our fresh sack of groceries outside the store!


Saturday, July 7, 2012

What Heat?

I wonder what is in my very black dog, Loo-C-Loo's brain as she lays in the direct sunlight on a very hot day? Notice the shade from the trees just a little further back, but I guess not for her today. We know she likes to wait and catch unsuspecting birds, mice and chipmunks, but everything is hiding in the cooler parts today. Even the flowers and other backyard fauna seems to be wilting today.

Thankful that this crazy dog must realize she can and will escape to a much cooler house when done "tanning"!

Photo taken at 12:39pm with the temperature an even 100 degrees!


Friday, July 6, 2012


I generally like to play games, with word games like Scrabble, Boggle and now Words With Friends at the top of my list. Due to the power outages this past week my son convinced me to play his favorite - monopoly, the NHL version. Now these games are wonderful and all, but at the very tippy top of my list is the 32 year old game of PACMAN which was released in May of 1980, my senior year of high school.

What I'm thankful now is that I do not have to feed my computer tons of quarters like I did in college to play!!! Shhh don't tell my Mom!

So two years ago with the 30th anniversary of this pesky game, I became reacquainted (my family will attest to obsessed) with my beloved PACMAN. I even keep a spreadsheet of my high scores. Initially my goal was to break 50,000 points which I did, and my new goal is 100,000 points. I hope I can post sometime this year in reaching that one! (high score is 95,880)

BSoleille! Finding the bright side of board games to computer games!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Queen Anne's Lace

Some folks may consider the Queen Anne's Lace "flower" a roadside weed, but this is one of my favorite flowers - weed or no weed. I find beauty in the tiny white and very intricate lacy florets. Believe it or not it is a member of the carrot family, is quite an aggressive plant, and is biennial so it lives only 2 years. And the most intriguing is the darkly colored floret just off center above the rest for no apparent reason.

BSoleille! Enjoying the bright white flower heads of Queen Anne's Lace.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A Great 4th of July

Started the day with a 28 mile bike ride with my husband and electricity. Middle of the day started with a nap and no electricity. Once the house started heating up I ended my day at the pool with the hope the electricity would come back on and it did (of course I also went out of my way to get some ice for the cooler that's planted in the kitchen probably for the duration of the summer).

My photo today was taken at the pool with Laura and Kathy who invited me to share some Maryland crabs at their picnic table. That's a perfect 4th of July!


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Summer Projects Underway

I am thankful our electricity is back on in our house but many are still without in Maryland. I hope it will all be restored very soon.

So working on my first summer house project and before deciding to succumb to a/c this morning, I finished getting our back hallway ready for the installation of a floating hardwood floor (bought today as well). So my photo today is the "before" and hopefully soon I can reveal the "after".

BSoleille! Finding the bright side of new flooring!

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Dump!

Interestingly enough, I just love going to our county dump to recycle and reduce all my junk! Today I needed to go throw away most of our food from our fridge due to the continued power outages in my area. Thankful to get rid of all the spoiled items and clean the fridge from top to bottom. Hopefully we will return to electricity soon!

Photo is at the Anne Arundel County waste management center.


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Euro Cup 2012

My family and I had a great time at the McPeak's (Coach Tony and Rebecca) along with Cathy and Andy B- Olivia's former youth soccer team Freestate Phoenix coaches, watching Spain beat up on Italy to win 4-0.

The company was great no doubt, but I also enjoyed some cooling off time in their pool and A/C in their house (we still do not have power in our house due to Friday's terrible storm).

BSoleille! Finding fun in Euro Cup soccer with Scotsman Tony!