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!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Beautiful Night for Baseball

A last minute decision landed us at the Bowie Baysox "Knock Cancer Out of The Park" night. Various cancer organizations had tables of information set up on the concourse level, and my husband and I met up with Tom and Marilyn Eichner at the Georgetown Lombardi Cancer Center table. It was a very relaxing night with perfect weather to take in the game, although the home team lost to Richmond 4-1. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of "the ole ball game"!


Friday, May 30, 2014


Remember simple board games that do not involve anything electronic?  Well, my son played some games he took from the house yesterday (rained all day at the pool where he works), and decided that they were "cool" again and asked me to play tonight. Of course I played!  I loved  rolling the five die and yelling to get a Yahtzee (never happened for me, but the son rolled two of them).  I lost the game to him, but renewed my interest in this great family fun!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a fun board game. 


Thursday, May 29, 2014


Please try to follow the "dots" in this post on how I signed up for an Instagram account this morning (time eater/waster?) I received an email from my friend Linda Misencik in Ohio, who wanted me to forward her email to "The Best Daughter", because Linda's daughter, Caitlin Misencik, who lives in Boulder, Colorado, just became Fresh Produce Retail Clothing  Line's social media person solely focusing on Instagram and all that it entails. Caitlin wants more followers on the Fresh Produce social media outlets and preferably "her" Instagram one. So, after thinking about it for a few minutes decided what the heck, and got an account. Truly Facebook, Twitter and now Instagram seem to all run together for me. I know (and husband reminds me) that Twitter is great for business. I get that!

So if you have an Instagram account, please check out Fresh Produce!


Photo from my first post on Instagram. A block I made for a tshirt quilt I am currently working on using several Boy Scout elements. 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

PAC-man Cheer

This double entendre "cheer" is that, yes, I still cheerfully play and love it as a relaxation ritual almost daily, and that on one occasion recently, my husband "cheered" me on as my Pac-man frantically attempted to evade the enemies: Blinky, Pinky, Inky and Clyde!  What a guy, huh?  And truth be told I had another high game over 101,000 last week. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of "packy wacky" as I affectionately call my favorite game. 


Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day 2014

Our nation today still faces challenges with soldiers in harms way, unfortunately. However, with their resolve, and the resolve of millions of US soldiers who have served before them, I deeply thank you for your dedication and sacrifices. Army, Navy, Air Force Marines-keeping our country and many places around the globe safe which is simply awesome!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

I Found Her

Big Lucy Loo likes to play hide and seek, mostly she "hides" and we "seek"!  Maybe it is the  laying down on cool underbrush that makes her happy; it must since she could sit or lay out there for hours on end and probably doesn't care if we really find her or not. She's a funny one that Lucy. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of a "cool" dog. 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

All Types of Flags

This Memorial Day weekend certainly merits hanging Old Glory proudly for all to see. A small token really to show our national pride and to thank those who served in our great military that makes this country like no other. 

I like all kinds of flags, and this weekend I have been waving a US soccer linesman flag for some of my 13 games assigned with six games in the record book thus far (Columbia Soccer Tournament). "Only" seven more to go. I am thankful that the weather has been so delightful with temps hovering around 75 degrees!

BSoleille!  The bright side of waving a flag!


Friday, May 23, 2014

The Streets are Paved with Gold...

Garbage cans or the more PC moniker, recycle bins. We woke up one day this week, and they were lined up on every driveway. They are huge too, and take up a lot of space in the garage. It seems like my county is really counting on its residents to recycle just about everything, and therefore we do not have much "garbage" on a day to day basis when so much is going to the recycle bin. I think this is a good idea, how about you?

BSoleille!  The bright side of recycling!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Banana Bike

Looking for a particular photo I want to share (still not found), I came across this photo from 1971 on a banana bike I won at Geauga Lake Amusement Park in Ohio. I think this "pink" roadster was just delivered and I already picked out a flower basket (all the rage back in the day) to go on the front handlebars. A great blast from the past!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a brand new shiny bicycle!


Season of Graduations

A shout out to all the high school and college graduates in the class of 2014!  Congratulations to one and all!🎓🎓🎓

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Grillin' and Chillin'

A week ago we finally bit the bullet and bought a new BBQ Grill. It's been used a couple of times already and everything tastes great coming off the "barbie"!  Today was chicken and roasted veggies-yummy!  Lots of chopping (veggies) which was thankfully done by "The Best Daughter". Looking forward to more grilling throughout the summer. 

BSoleille! The bright side of perfectly grilled chicken (moist and juicy). 


Photo of the "grill assistants" Bill and Olivia 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Puppy Play

Our 12.5 year old poodle mix Lucky seems to never tire of playing ball even after a quick paced four mile walk!  Out in the freshly mowed yard he gained spunk and "demanded" to play fetch for a bit  longer than I thought he would. Fun for both of us. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of a spunky dog. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Six Games of Soccer

As I write this post, I am one pooped out referee with six games under my belt today. I referreed at three different venues (thankfully, all in the same county), spanning from 9:30 am (first game) to getting home at 9:30pm!  Whew!  Plenty of sunshine and great kids playing the beautiful game that made it all worth it. 


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Movie Anyone?

The husband and two dogs (and me) watched "The Art of the Steal" with Kurt Russell and Matt Dillon tonight. I'll give it 2 1/2 stars out of 5, and due to all the cons upon cons, one has to pay strict attention to all the "moving" parts of this flick. (I do not think I paid close enough attention!)


Friday, May 16, 2014

Barbara Walters

Today marked the end of an era in broadcasting with the retirement of Ms. Barbara Walters after 50 years in the business. She is an icon, and a great reminder of women breaking glass ceilings all over the place, especially becoming the first female anchor of a major network in 1974, alongside Harry Reasoner (who, by the way, loathed the fact she was his co-anchor!). I watched "The View" today to see the poignant tributes and wonderful send off by every well known female broadcaster in the business. 

Interestingly, I read her book, "Audition" a few years ago, and she referenced it a couple of times on the show today. A pretty good read, in that, she has interviewed so many very interesting people throughout the years and weaved her stories delightfully. She's quite funny, with a quick wit, and takes her job(s) quite seriously. At 84 years young, I wish her the best!

Photo from the web gallery of images; one of her first days as co-anchor with Harry Reasoner. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

"Garden Girls"

Coincidentally, yesterday's lawn and garden day parlayed nicely into today's garden party theme for my quilt's anniversary dinner. My 2Bee partner, Trish, had the idea and we ran with it. The takeaway were the begonias at every place setting!  The other tables were also very festive and creative making the evening enjoyable for all. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of six wonderfully decorated tables. 


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Sun Up to Sun Down

The order for today was lawn and garden, and it went on all day long. Thankfully, I had great help from Josh Franek!  He just moved to Baltimore, Maryland (from Ohio), and had some time to visit and help me get my front beds and gardens in good order before he starts a new job. I did not realize how over grown everything was until we started working. (And by the way, today's work did, in fact, include gutter cleaning!).

Not only did we do all the above, we still made it to the dump to drop off lots of brush, and then since Josh has his Dad's truck for a couple more days, he helped me buy and bring home a new gas grill (and assembled it too!). Whooohooo!

BSoleille!  The bright side of getting stuff done, with all the credit and a big Thank You going to Josh. 


Monday, May 12, 2014

Police Unity Tour

Today I got "stopped" in Crofton, Maryland, as the 1700 strong police -Police Unity Tour- cycled through my small town. What a sight for sure, and 90% of the officers were yelling "thank you" to those who came out to support their effort. Their primary purpose is to raise awareness of Law Enforcement Officers who haves died in the line of duty. 

The ride started in 1997, and to date, officers have raised over 14 million dollars  for their Memorial Fund. What a great day for the ride!

BSoleille!  For the officers "who ride for those who died".


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mothers Day 2014

My hope is that all Moms at a wonderful "today"!  I am thankful that it was also a spectacular weather day to bike DC (28 miles worth) of monuments, parks, and several miles of the Mt Vernon bike trail. And to top it off, a quick lunch in Georgetown with "The Best Daughter" and hubby Bill. The next time for a DC ride we plan to bike the 34 mile round trip to Mt. Vernon and back (Arlington cemetery entrance). 

BSoleille! The bright side of getting in that first ride of the season (albeit quite late this year) with legs and butt not feeling too bad!


Saturday, May 10, 2014

Cute Baby Quilt

I have entered into the time of my life that several of my friends' kids are having babies. That means making baby quilts for the little recepients!  Today I went to a shower and gave this quilt to Shannon for her bundle of joy due in July!

BSoleille!  The bright side of cute onesies!


Friday, May 9, 2014

25 Years a Quilter

On this day 25 years ago I finished my very first quilt!  It is hand quilted, with some hand-pieced blocks and one appliqué "honey bee" block, and most commonly called a Sampler Quilt. A little bit of "everything",  meaning lots of very traditional quilt blocks. I even remember my teachers name: Cindy Craft, and she was awesome. I signed up for the sampler class at a cute little quilt shop called Hoops-n-Hollers in North Olmsted, Ohio, that unfortunately, closed its doors several years ago. But the class was great and it kick started my interest in quilting and I have never looked back. "I've come a long way, baby"!

BSoleille!  The bright side of a great hobby that I truly embrace!


Thursday, May 8, 2014

"Sands of Time"

It seems to me that time moves very quickly two times a year-going to the dentist. Six months pass like a New York minute and it seems like just yesterday the dental hygienist was telling me to floss more and swish my tooth brush in a circular fashion. Today, same thing. Plus, I am very thankful that I have no cavities (lots of teeth already filled)!  Honestly though, I LOVE going to the dentist. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of squeaky clean teeth!



Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Birds Of A Feather

Flock Together. Well, several of us interested in the driving forces behind the new Teen and Young Adult Cancer Program at Seattle's Children's Hospital, namely, Dr. Becky Johnson, gathered in DC's Smith Center for the Healing Arts for a talk on how Seattle tackled this issue as well as what remains to be done.  Of course there are many foundations, camps and programs benefitting pediatric cancers (as well as there should be), but the "gap" cancer population (18-39) is under served, as I learned as such today. A few centers are trying to garner support throughout the US, but so much more could be done to provide better medical care and psychosocial services to the AYA cancer population. 

There are no easy answers, plenty of questions, but thankfully, and according to Dr. Johnson, grass root efforts led by both the medical communities and advocates to better serve teens and young adults with cancer, as well as the growing numbers of childhood cancers survivors. I can only hope that the dialog today in DC takes hold for incoming programs to benefit these age groups. 

BSoleille!  Live each day!

Photo of the very colorful origami bird installation at the Smith Center on U Street. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

8 to 5 and 5/5

On "cinco de mayo" I waited from 8 to 5 for a water heater repairman to get here and get that hot water working once again.  By 3:00pm I began "panicking" because no one called or showed up, so I called to see what the status was since there were "only" two hours left of the work day (at least in water heater repairmen time).  Don't you just love this window of waiting time?  8am to 5pm??? When I called, the repairmen was 1.5 hours away.  Although the wait was something I could do without, I'm thankful to get that tank working again and looking forward to that hot shower as soon as I sign off on this post!

BSoleille!  The bright side of an HOT shower!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Sheep and Wool Festival

A perfect morning to take in the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in West Friendship (Howard County Fairgrounds). I met up with fellow quilter, Cappy, and her friend Liz. We looked at all the vendors and went to the working sheep dog demonstration. Everything was going well for sheep and dogs (three dogs showing off their herding abilities), until, I guess, the sheep could not take one more "round up" a moment longer and "busted" through the fence!  The vendors on the other side of the field got a great surprise when three errant sheep got out! I'd say that ended the show for us, but it was still very cool. 

BSoleille!  The bright side of sheep and wool!


Saturday, May 3, 2014

Picnic Season Begins

Despite our hot water heater and outdoor grill on the blink, (and we needed the grill), we had a festive picnic atmosphere with the "Pheen families" nonetheless. That meant hotdog and hamburgs in the skillet on the stove and baked chicken in the oven, but all was good.  A big thanks to the Gits and Koz's for the delicious sides!

BSoleille!  The bright side of picnic food no matter how it's prepared!


Friday, May 2, 2014

A Great Soccer Experience

This evening I refereed (center) a scrimmage/"friendly" on a U16 Boys game that moved very quickly from the first whistle at kick off. The level of play was at a high level and I worked valiantly to keep up with the play. Considering this was a "friendly", I worked alone with no Assistant Referees, but the players, coaches, and spectators made the game enjoyable for all, and thankfully, me. Score after 90 minutes: DC United (academy team) 1, Maryland United 1.

BSoleille!  The bright side of a beautiful evening on the pitch!


Thursday, May 1, 2014

Chris Bohjalian and Vintage Books

I'm a big fan of writer and author Chris B. He is trying out something "new" in gaining new readers, and thus new loyal fans using social media to spread the word. I am half way through the book (and it's sooo good), and will be passing on my copy to a reader (already selected), who has never read one of Chris's books.  I hope Angie will like it, then mention it on her blog, AngieKozBlogs and her Twitter account to create more buzz!
A note from Chris

March 2014

Dear Friends who Read and Readers who are Friends,

I'm writing you today because you have been wonderfully supportive of my work over the years. Every writer should be as lucky as I am when it comes to my readers. You are the reason why I love visiting bookstores and libraries all across the country each year.

My publishers, Vintage Books and Doubleday, want to try something new, and they are hoping to enlist your help.

What would you need to do? It's simple: they are looking for a few of my readers who would like to share my books with at least one friend who may not have read me yet.   They will send you a free paperback copy of THE LIGHT IN THE RUINS (in stores April 22) to give to a friend; if your friend likes it, we hope that she / he will talk about it via social media, although there is certainly no obligation.

And, as a thank you for being such a great fan, they'll also send you an electronic copy of the first chapter of my forthcoming novel (one of the novels I am proudest of), CLOSE YOUR EYES, HOLD HANDS (in stores July 8). You can also  share the electronic chapter with as many friends via email or social media as you'd like.

If you'd like a book and first chapter to share, please email your name and mailing address to Vintage Books atlovetoreadcb@gmail.com and the book will be sent to you the first week in April. Your name and contact information will not be stored or used by Vintage Books or Doubleday for any other purpose.

Thanks again for your faith in my fiction -- and in what words and reading and books can mean to the soul.

All the best,

Chris B.
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