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!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Off to Work She Goes

The little bird is flying its coop work wise. "TBD" started her career today in accounting but quickly realized Washington DC beltway traffic is very tough. Her commute took over two hours  as accidents choked the highways all around town in getting there. We are thankful she got there safely, had a good first day, and got back home safely at the end of the day!

BSoleille! The bright side of bright early mornings to best beltway traffic!

Photo of "The Best Daughter" aka Olivia 

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

White House Tour

The pope was in town last week, but today three local folks got to tour the White House on a very cloudy and humid fall day. A shout of thanks to "Dink" who made the arrangements for us. I do want to mention that the security is tighter than my last visit (during George Jr.), and we got to see "Bo the dog". I could not react in time to take its photo, but he is surely a cute dog!  And yes, the White House (or the people's house) is very impressive no matter when you get the chance to go. For the first time anyone can take as many photos as they want inside and actually encourage you to do so, especially sharing it with social media sites. I'm doing my part!


Monday, September 28, 2015

Super Moon through the Skylight

A day late and a dollar short on the pretty awesome moon, but cloudy skies prevailed yesterday in our area. Lots of great photos on the web, of course. 
Here is my "rendition" of the super moon!


Saturday, September 26, 2015

Join my Team “” for Fall in Love 10K and 5K Run & Walk.

Join my Team “” for Fall in Love 10K and 5K Run & Walk.

This is a new adventure for me in posting today's blog from a race I entered recently to benefit Childhood Cancer: Special Love's Fall in Love 10K and 5K.  It's next weekend, Saturday October 3rd.  Click on the above link to sign up!  You don't even have to run, you can walk, and hopefully, many can do that one and have a great time supporting a great cause!  I hope I see a lot of faces in the crowd!



Friday, September 25, 2015

My Morning Music

Back in the day, anyone remember wearing the bulky AM/FM radio headphones while they worked out or went for a run? Or carrying a small portable CD player? Certainly times have changed with "technological wonders" of having your "favorite" 10,000 songs on a tiny "pod" of some sort that is truly amazing.  And, interestingly enough, the last running event I went to, 80% of the participants had music/headphones in their ears to traverse the race.  However, today, and lots of days, I either forget, or my device is low battery, and I head out the door with just the sounds of the day.  My "morning music" today included: cicadas, crickets, the honking of mallard ducks over head and flying in an inverted "V", the whoosh of a car, the rumble of the school bus, the whistle from the school crossing guards, the ping of a golf ball, a single "woof" from a dog, the siren of an ambulance,  the rustle of a dry leaf tumbling down the street, and my own breathing.  I forced the keen sense of hearing to the "real" music of the morning....and that is something to be thankful about!


Thursday, September 24, 2015


In a male dominated soccer referee pool, it is a pleasure to work with some lady referees (though that number is dwindling). Today I worked a "two-man" system middle school boys game with another ref named Teri (she has minus one "r" as compared to my double "r" spelling). We sure do have fun introducing ourselves to the coaches, as they never forget our names while on the pitch!  And I am thankful that we really work well together as a "team" too. 

BSoleille! The bright side of double Terri/Teri fun!

Photo of Teri and Terri

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Back in the Groove

After a busy summer of travel, family outings and soccer games, I missed a lot of my quilt guild meetings. So tonight it was great to be back with my quilt "peeps" (I even won the name day drawing!), and did a demo of half square triangles for a part of the program. We had four stations of different demonstrations that the members rotated after 15 minutes in each one. It was great getting back into the sewing/quilting groove with many projects looming on the horizon!

BSoleille/P. S. The bright side of Pope Francis in Washington, D.C. (I/we did not try to go down with all the road closures all around the city). 


Monday, September 21, 2015

A Whale of a Good Time

I refrained from mentioning yesterday the hump back whale I saw prior to entering the water for the triathlon. Actually it was two waves prior to mine (one was my daughters's), and I did not think anyone else saw it, plus I doubted what I thought I saw. The whale was about 50 yards behind the support kayaks, and the kayak teams were looking toward the beach. So without giving that whale more thought, I jumped right in the water once our wave horn sounded.

A few hours later, I learned more people had seen it too, along with many pods of dolphins swimming along with all the waves of colorful capped head swimmers. Thankfully, no sea creatures were seen while I did the swim portion of the race. I guess we can all share the waters.....


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Bethany Beach Triathlon

I am thankful for a "warmish" morning because the first leg of a triathlon is the swim. And the swim portion was the leg I was most "worried" about (sharks, kicks to the head, big waves and big gulps of salt water if you are not careful on the breathing), but for some uncanny reason, it was the best part of the race for me. 

But even better than the swim, bike and run was the fact this was the first triathlon for both me and "the best daughter", Olivia! And she did fantastic, placing 2nd in her age group. For me, the gift was simply to finish. Mission accomplished!

A big shout out to the First Responders of Bethany Beach and surrounding areas for such a well run event in all aspects. On a personal level, another shout out of thanks to our cheerleaders: Marilyn and Danielle Eichner, and Olivia's friends Rachel and Danielle, plus our gracious hostess (with the mostest) Rosemary Klein, of Bethany, Delaware, who has super comfy beds for a good night's sleep, along with good pies (that's what people say) and even better conversations, especially on the beach. 

Our day ended with a restaurant meal with Kathy and Jon Russell and Rosemary in Rehoboth, and the best ice cream at Vanderwende's in Dewey Beach. 


Saturday, September 19, 2015

Summer Slipping Slowly....

It is getting darker earlier, meaning summer is slowly losing its grip on bathing suits, shorts, fresh juicy garden tomatoes and vacations. However, one more pursuit of summer is the Bethany Beach Triathlon tomorrow morning, with thankfully, warm ocean waters (we tested it) and predicted sunny skies. "The Best Daughter" and I signed up months ago, so we will pace our bodies to swim, bike and run throughout the beautiful beach town of Bethany.  We are excited to get this underway as soon as we wake up. Good luck to all athletes this weekend pursuing a long run or race, plus a few folks I know in a paddle race adventure in Michigan...The Lauras!


Thursday, September 17, 2015

The Aslan Project

A world visionary in treating children diagnosed with cancer is none other than Dr. Aziza Shad. Tonight we were thankful to attend a deserving tribute to Dr. Shad and her Aslan Project in transforming pediatric cancer care in low-income countries. There are huge gaps in survival rates that are incredulous (over 80% in high resource countries compared to 10% in low income countries). With the Project's mission in training doctors, nurses and many support staff in these countries, more children are given a fair chance at survival.  More importantly, the children and their families are given hope, and with hope, positive outcomes can seem more attainable regardless of their circumstances or place of birth. 

Currently, Dr. Shad's Aslan Project is working with children in Ethiopia, and the country's first pediatric oncologist fellow just graduated this past year where he is helping with the mission of alleviating suffering and improving survival rates to many kids and adolescents throughout his country. Let's toast to that great news!



Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Maryland Crabs

A warm calm evening on the water in Annapolis was the perfect back drop for an Installnet crab feast at Cantler's. It was fun to catch up with the lives of my former coworkers, who are now my husband's coworkers, and eat the delicious crustaceans dusted with Old Bay accompanied with drawn butter and vinegar. Yummy! A big shout out of thanks to Dale and Karen Ewing for the great shindig!


Photo #2 includes BJ and Carol Diamond and Karen Ewing. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Boo Boo Bunny Revisited

For many years the "Good Night Moon" bunny, or as we called "him", the Boo Boo Bunny, was a constant companion for my son since he was about nine months old. The book and bunny were gifts from our friends', Scot and Jodie Smith. Jodie knew this would be an instant hit in our family, and she was right. However, our Boo Boo Bunny, or more aptly, my son Ryan's Boo Boo Bunny, took on a life of his own as he became the true life saver in a chaotic world of childhood cancer and all its woes. That bunny was certainly put through the paces and was a huge part of our family for over 10 years (he still is in our hearts)!

So when my husband came home and announced he needed two books for an office grandmother baby shower, he did not hesitate in selecting two "Good Night Moon" books plus the stuffed bunny to go with them (I insisted he had to get both). Maybe the "legacy" will continue with two more children that will come to love "Boo Boo Bunny" like we did over 20 years ago!

Photo of Bill with his gifts for two of his coworkers. 

Sunday, September 13, 2015

DC Shorts

A cool thing I have never done before tonight is to attend a film festival!  It is the world in 90 minutes: 125 films and 6 screenplays from 24 countries all rolled into the DC Shorts Film Festival & Screenplay Competition from September 10-20 at the Landmark Theatre on 11th and F Street. 

The "full circle" moment is when filmmaker Rob Lucas got in touch with me a few years ago (after an ardent search with only my first name) as he was in the midst of filming his documentary on Polish Track Star Stella Walsh of Cleveland, Ohio. Stella was my track coach in my youth when I competed for the Polish Falcons of America including a trip to compete in Poland in 1977 at the Polish Olympic Games in Krak√≥w, Poland. 

I have blogged about the film and Stella in previous posts, and tonight's viewing of the film in its final version of 15 minutes was simply "fantabulous"!

I am so thankful that Rob included me and my husband in tonight's viewing, and according to Rob, the short has been accepted in over 30 festivals both here and abroad, even in one of the most prestigious, Cannes in France! And it has been nominated for many awards as well. This is truly outstanding. 

We really enjoyed the entire evening of short films ranging from 4-23 minutes in length (about 9 total films), but Stella Walsh was our huge favorite!

A big CONGRATULATIONS to Rob Lucas on a job well done. We are so proud of you!

BSoleille! The bright side of short films!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Lori's Quilt #2

When my "piecemaker" bee friend Lori Costello passed away in May, our bee got together to celebrate Lori's life, and this included her quilting. Of course she had several works in progress, and we decided that we will finish the quilts and other items and give them back to her family. I already finished Lori's Quilt #1, but forgot to take a photo. Today I finished Quilt #2 and it was an honor to work and finish Lori's beautiful quilts. Her workmanship was bar none and they were a pleasure to quilt. 

BSoleille! The bright side of finishing and giving back!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Nine Eleven

Those two words, or numbers, or dates invoke a memory that will never be forgotten. Enough written and viewed but I feel that there should be acknowledgement of the significance of said numbers. 

My photo is made of chains and hangs proudly at the Harley Davidson Restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada. (World's heaviest flag!)

Thursday, September 10, 2015

It is 11:11

Also known as "magic time". Anyone else say this when the clock hits 11:11?

That's the time I started writing this post. It will be a quick one. Looking back on some photos of our Colorado trip in July, I could not help notice the huge pine cones on this tree in the Rocky Mountain National Park!  I wanted to share this great nature photo!


Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Peek-a-Boo Sun

There is a bunch of trees and vines and weeds in the backyard that definitely needs some clean up, but capturing the setting sun through all the mess is spectacular! Beauty in the eye of the beholder, the proverbial saying goes. I am hoping for continued warm days (with less humidity, of course) as Indian Summer descends. 


Monday, September 7, 2015

Labor Day 2015

I certainly hope everyone had a pleasant holiday weekend, including today, Labor Day, or the "last day of summer" as some folks like to say. I will take summer as far as it will go especially with warm weather days ahead. A first for me and the husband was going our community pool on the last/closing day. The water was still warm and inviting and it would be lovely to keep it open longer, but no one to work it as the kids who work there have all gone back to their respective schools. Until next season.....


Photo is a funny configuration of a pool in Las Vegas. I took this photo from the top of the Stratosphere. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

September is childhood cancer awareness month, and I would be remiss if I did not take a day to blog about the needed awareness of all kids battling the good fight for their lives when diagnosed. Another cancer fighting mom posted my photo today on her Facebook page and it really sums up my feeling as well!  I gave birth to my hero-Ryan Tomoff, 21 years ago and a 19 year survivor and "thriver"!  Now that is something to be truly thankful for this month!

Cheers to the siblings that have to go along for the childhood cancer roller coaster ride, it is not easy for them but they persevere as well!!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Pretty Flowers

Except for some weeks of travel, I must admit I am keeping to my New Years Resolution from 2014 on having fresh flowers in the house. So this weekend I was finally able to buy some, and in my favorite color of fushia!  I do love roses and sunflowers, but carnations last a good long while before wilting. 

BSoleille! The bright side of fresh flowers! (Even amoungst the messy island)

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Battle of the Beltway...

It's all in the tshirt, or the tshirt says it all: Redskins vs. Ravens and let the football season begin. (I used to say I like going to the cold games of -20 degrees in a Cleveland January, but not anymore!)


Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Bees a Buzzing

I am so thankful to be back in the hive of me bee-Possibillibees! Food, fun and laughter was the order tonight on the water in Edgewater, Maryland! Although no sewing or quilting tonight, we certainly talked about it plus plans for future projects on hand. Beautiful evening...


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Let the Season Begin....

That is...Fantasy Football and the whole shebang!  First time ever for me to participate and I am excited about it. Except for my son, it is the first time for all my family members. Looking forward to paying more attention to the games each week, and scrutinizing all my players as they run, throw, punt and kick. A good solid defense will round out the picks!

BSoleille! The bright side of "fantasy" football. Dream on...


Photo of family making our selections in the draft!