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!

Thursday, October 31, 2013


Happy Halloweenie!  A fun day dressing up (haven't done that in a long while), and had the usual suspects trick or treating at the house including Bob the Builder, Princesses, a little gorilla, ninjas and Buzz Light Year

The pups loved seeing all the kids and manned the door for two straight hours!

BSoleille!  The bright side of ghosts and goblins. 


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Big Leaf

I know there are trees around the world that generate large leaves, but for suburbia USA, the sycamore takes the prize for big waxy leaves. I like to refer to then as "sick a more" because even though we do not have one, our neighbors do, and they find their way into my yard year after year. Since they have that waxy finish, I bet I have a few from the 1990's!!!

My photo is a measured leaf 17" wide and 14" long. I am not raking them!


Monday, October 28, 2013

Keen Peripheral Vision

I cannot seem to get over how alive and keen our peripheral vision is during the autumn season with so much vibrant colors bouncing all over the place. The yellows, oranges and reds seem to burst out at me just pulling out of my driveway or going for a run and don't quit until the sun goes down. Thankfully, we still have a few more weeks to enjoy the leaves before they become Charlie Brown trees!



Sunday, October 27, 2013

Quilt to Marilyn

I was finally able to give Marilyn Eichner her quilt today and she was thrilled!  Apparently, last Sunday at my quilt guilds' annual Quilt Bingo, Marilyn never was able to scream "BINGO" to win one. Now, thankfully, she has one the good old fashioned way, given to her by a friend and quilter-me!

BSoleille! The bright side of giving....

Photo 1-Marilyn and her quilt; 2- Patty Lubin and Marilyn (grinning because Patty won not one, but two quilts at BINGO last weekend)!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Crofton Garden Club

No, I am not joining another thing, but this morning as I was going into the library, several busy gardeners were fast at work making pretty near the entrance. I stopped to admire (and knew a couple people) and asked if I could include them today on my blog as a thank you in keeping the community looking beautiful! They obliged. 

BSoleille! The bright side of a volunteer effort in beautification. 

Friday, October 25, 2013

Vintage and New Quilts

This past Wednesday my guild's program for the evening was a lecture by Mary W. Kerr, who loves to use vintage clothing, textiles and old quilts and repurpose them into something new. She impressively converged "old and old traditions" with something "exciting" from today. 

She is an American Quilt Society certified appraiser and an award winning quilter. She grew up in a family of quilters and has been teaching since 1987. She currently lectures and conduct workshops that focus on quilt history and the preservation of antique textiles.  And, thankfully, this was an ah ha moment to use doiles, hankies, linens, and certain momentos in possible future quilts for me. She was funny in telling her family lore, and terrific in how she blended the many aspects of various fabrics in weaving her stories for today's audience. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of "something old" turning into "something new"!

Photo of Mary Kerr


Thursday, October 24, 2013

10,000 Smiles and Counting

This was the gist of the 10th Anniversary party for the Hope for Henry Foundation this evening - an all out over-the-top Halloween extravaganza at Georgetown Hospital. From their brochure, "While doctors and medical teams focus on curing physical illnesses, Hope for Henry is an Rx for their spirit, bringing joy, fun, magic and adventure into the lives of children despite their serious medical challenges."  I could not agree more and my son and our family have been recepients of their generosity from the very beginning. I'm thankful that Henry's parents (Laurie Strognin and Allen Goldberg) embraced love and commitment to bring joy to so many kids about one year after losing Henry. 

As a matter of fact, this wonderful foundation just "served" their 10,000 child!  Now that's something to be thankful about!

My photos include a thank you speech by Ryan, and the two parents who also spoke to thank Laurie and Allen including myself and Beth Goldberger, plus "super hero" Alvin Morris of the Washington Redskins with Ryan. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of "live well and laugh hard" - Henry Goldberg


Wednesday, October 23, 2013


The minute I reached into my sweats pocket this morning for a morning run/walk and pulled out $11.30, I knew I had my blogpost today. For the life of me I honestly don't remember putting the cash into it, but it was a great unexpected find nonetheless. And since I worked a full day today, that "fun-found" cash paid for the Chinese food ordered in the office!  

BSoleille!  The bright side of an unexpected find-especially cash!


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A New Job

I started my eighth week as a Project Coordinator for a Crofton, Maryland company called InstallNET. I really like my new job and I am learning so many new skills that the part time hours I work simply fly by!  InstallNET partners with service providers, office furniture companies, and end users to provide consistent and professional installation services. My company facilitates the whole process. 

As I mentioned to my husband a few weeks ago, "Where has 'business' been in my life"?  For a gal who has only worked in public service, I am really enjoying working in business and thankful for this new opportunity. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of new employment!


Photo of my work station (Redskins poster is my co-worker's)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Almost 50 Games

My household contains four Grade 8 USSF Soccer Referees, but I am the only one refereeing games at the moment. Since August 29th, I have officiated in almost 50 games, with four more this week to finish out the middle school and high school soccer season in Maryland. Some weeks I worked 10-12 games which surely whipped me into shape, and I am thankful for the great exercise this afforded me. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of getting into "shape"!

One last photo of JMU's Senior Day with the family!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

"Girls Rule"

The Van Morrison song "Brown Eyed Girl" was also recorded by Jimmy Buffet in July of 1999 when he added during a percussion stanza, "Put me on that girl's soccer team, I'm ready!  Girls rule!"  I'm sure he was referring to the USA Women's Soccer team after they won the World Cup in early July,   but little (and big girls) playing soccer thought that was the coolest reference to "their sport".  One little girl was my daughter, Olivia, and today marked the culmination of youth, club, high school and college soccer!  Whooohooo!  

The James Madison University Women's Soccer Program was a great fit for her, and it's been a wonderful four years of supporting her and the team.  Today, the senior players with their parents were honored at the start of their last home game as a Lady Duke.  It was a great moment in that we participated in their tradition on the field for the National Anthem by tapping the heels of the player in front of you. The 3-0 win over The College of Charleston was the icing on the top of a wonderful day, and I'm very thankful for that!

BSoleille!  The bright side of Girls Rule!!!!


Photo of the honored seniors:  Olivia,  Lauren Wilson, Becky Sparks and Haley Miller

Saturday, October 19, 2013

"Senior Moment"

And it's not the kind of memory loss that we are all aware of and I have plenty of those. No, this is about four years of college soccer that just flew by with my daughter's entering class of 2010.  Although she was sidelined by injuries, we've been supportive of her class and team mates at JMU and very proud of their accomplishments on and off the field the past four years!  

Photos of the roommates (Olivia, Kate, Sam & Haley) and the six of them in her class (Sam, Kate, Becky, Olivia, Lauren and Haley) at dinner tonight in celebration!


Friday, October 18, 2013

Cookie Skillet and Karaoke

A JMU favorite is the cookie skillet at O'Neils's (formerly Ham's) which the family dug in with zeal (minus me, of course).  It's Senior Weekend for the Lady Dukes Soccer Team with a game tonight (they won 2-1 over UNC-Wilmington) and a game Sunday afternoon. We finished the night singing Karaoke (kids and Team mate Becky Sparks) with "Don't Stop Believing" by Fleetwood Mac!



Thursday, October 17, 2013

17 years on the 17th

Today I/we celebrate a great milestone, in that, our son Ryan was diagnosed with Childhood Leukemia 17 years ago on October 17th, a sort of "golden-milestone-anniversary if you will. I am thankful his warrior focus, fight and faith sustained him and our entire family through good times and bad times, and that we never gave up hope (or love). So a big shout out to Ryan and the many communities that helped us through the past 17 years up until today. I/we humbly thank you!!!

Photo #1 of Ryan and I celebrating the moment with taking him to lunch this afternoon, and Photo#2 this evenings beautiful rainbow!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a meaningful milestone. 


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Full Moon

There is a full moon rising somewhere, but not here yet.  However, my photo today was taken this summer and it was a spectacular one.  The upcoming harvest moon will hopefully be just as grand.  This one hung so low in the sky that if you reached high enough, it was "almost" close enough to touch!  And to place this into perspective, I "chased" this photo down around my block because it hung so low and there were lots of trees in the way.  So about a mile out of the neighborhood, I found the "perfect' spot with less trees and took the shot.

BSoleille!  The bright side of a full moon.



Tuesday, October 15, 2013

A Picture is Worth......

Remember that awesome sunset I mentioned last week before Maryland had four or five days of rain?  And that my son was so excited about it that he wanted to take photos too?  Well, out of those 588 photos I downloaded on Sunday, I selected the "best" three of that setting sun.  It was a collaborative effort in taking the various shots, but I am giving the nod to Ryan for his great work in capturing the moment!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a ROYGBIV sunset!  (I will give you that acronym:  red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet!)


Monday, October 14, 2013

Strike a Pose

This past summer I posted a photo of a napping squirrel that was in my backyard.  I watched him (or her) for 20 minutes while it napped on my fence post.  So, to my delight, another squirrel (could it be the same one?) struck a pose on another fence post last week.  It was there long enough for me to change camera lenses and walk outside to get a closer look/photo.  I just love the way the sun was bouncing off his tail, and it stayed long enough for me to grab several shots!

BSoleille!  The bright side of backyard squirrel antics!


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Imported 588 Photos

The disk on our camera needed to be "dumped" onto my computer,  and other drives kept by my husband, so I carved out a few minutes to do this task.  Well, that prompted me to take a peek on just what was on it and it was basically our entire summer of 2013 up to and including today.  I'm glad I took the time, and will share a few photos from the "archives" this week that I thought are pretty good ones!  Today's photo is from Higgin's Lake, Michigan.  It's my brother-in-law, Don (who is an identical twin to my husband); even though it's a silhouette, it's Don.  And I have to be honest,  just to make sure my gut was correct and it was him, I did look at a few others I had of him walking down the dock, and was able to discern it was him by his sandals!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a great silhouette photo.


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Quiet Day at Home

The family went to JMU for another tailgate and home football game, and that left me home alone with lots if quilting projects to work on. I'm thankful the day was rainy and dreary so I was not tempted to go out. It has been quite awihile since I did not leave home all day except for a walk with the pups!


Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fun Forty...Minutes

The last two days I have refereed three games of soccer, all in the pouring rain (thanks to the engineers of turf fields), but not all that bad, really. Besides focusing on the game at hand, my positive thoughts led to a very hot shower once home. And thankfully, that was just what was needed to finish the day. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of a hot shower on a chilly rainy day. 


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Garden Growing

Despite the cooler temperatures, changing leaves and rain, I noticed this morning my front garden is still blooming with "summer" flowers. Maybe a result from warm temps early in the week, but these white flowers have been kickin' for awhile now. Pretty!



Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Triple Header

A 3:30 JV Boys game; 5:00 Boys Varsity game; and 7:00 Girls Varsity game adds up to triple header (also known as a lot of soccer!) But I do not mind one bit, as I rather love to get out and run all over those fields of play. Great matches with two rival high schools but I witnessed good sportsmanship and a never-give-up attitude with the teams today, and I'm thankful for that!

BSoleille!  The bright side of good sportsmanship!


Photo from the field in between games. 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Super Sunset

With all the rain we had today in Maryland who would have thought we would end the day with a dazzling sunset?  Through the years I would get excited about fabulous sunsets and always mentioned to the family they have got check them out with me. This idea did not go over well sometimes because kids are kids. Shockingly, but with great delight, my son asked me where the "good" camera was because he wanted to capture the brilliant setting sun himself!  Now that's progress for me, and we enjoyed the changing sunset for several minutes as the sky filled with brilliant pinks, oranges, reds and blues until it sunk into the horizon. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of sharing a beautiful fall sunset!


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Tennis Anyone?

After a scorching day (high of 90 degrees) of officiating a couple of boys soccer games, once home, my son suggested we go and play some tennis. I could not resist and kept my sweated out  gear on to play. What I realized was that my soccer referee shorts have the deepest pockets to hold lots of tennis balls!  That made my day and I may wear them just to play tennis too. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of "dual" purpose shorts!


Saturday, October 5, 2013

Parent Weekend at JMU

It was parent "day" for us heading down to JMU for an early tailgate and football game at 1:30. A big win (40-13) over University of Albany and a visit with "The Best Daughter" made it an awesome day for sure!  

But I have to make one comment on the football team that was quite heartwarming to me. After each game, whether they win or lose, the entire team runs over to the end zone to "salute" the Royal Dukes Marching Band as a thank you to the band. They stand and sing the school's alma mater word for word and I think this is a fantastic gesture on the entire teams' part. I also believe the band works just as hard as the football team does too!

And FYI, this band will be one of the two college bands that have been selected to march in the Macy's Day Parade on Thanksgiving!  Go Dukes....


Friday, October 4, 2013


Tonight I hosted an impromptu bee from my quilt guild. It was a great night spent with Susie Stevenson and Mary Kay Kerr where we caught up on our lives, both quilting and non quilting, and did a little sewing as well. I worked on the crazy nine patch swap since I am a little bit behind in turning in my finished blocks (finished size 1.5"), and yes you read that correctly, one and a half inch (finished) block. That's a pretty tiny block and we need to make hundreds of them!  

BSoleille!  The bright side of a 3Bee!


Thursday, October 3, 2013

My Lazy Daisy Fabric

A few months ago I bought some, what I think is, cute fabric. I did not buy much but had a perfect amount to cut down and give six pieces to my new bee: The Possibilibees, for birthday blocks. My photo shows the cut fabrics in two colors and I am suggesting everyone make stars. By either next month (my bday month) or December, I should have the finished blocks. I will then post what I receive and they will be wonderful I'm sure. Looking forward to the "reveal"!


Wednesday, October 2, 2013


Quilters not only use scraps to make quilts, they tend to use up and piece all kinds of fabrics and battings so nothing is wasteful. Today I worked on quilts, but got side tracked in making big battings out of "scraps" of battings. This amounted to five fairly large battings to be used in future quilts. I love that repurposefullness (can I use this word?) by making "something" out of "nothing"!

BSoleille! The bright side of reduce, reuse and recycle. 


Photo of my living room/batt studio today. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

US Government- Good or Bad?

I really do not want to get politcal on this blog, but I'm really sad about our Congress right now and the stalemate between the House and Senate on the budget and health care issues.  Our government shutting down is not a good thing, and I certainly hope cooler heads will prevail to solve the issues at hand and "serve the people" of this country as best they can.  Despite the goings on in Washington, DC today, though, the day was beautiful and a late afternoon soccer game was just what I needed to get some afternoon exercise!



Photo of a fall day in 2011- from the archives!