Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Humming Along

Hello there, how is everyone?!  Things here have been crazy around here, some good crazy and some bad...but mostly good.

We bought a hummingbird feeder, and that has been both good and bad.  I love seeing these delicate little creatures as they come to feed at our feeder, but man are they hard to photograph.

They are so darned fast and not keen on humans, so trying to take pictures from afar and in the evening light, when they seem to feed the most, is a bit trying on my patience.  I've decided that in the winter the swans are my photo nemesis' (or is that nemisi?) and in the summer these little buggers will do everything in their power to elude my lens.

Oh well, it gives me something to do, right...and it keeps me out of trouble!

The past few weeks have been filled with all sorts of things, like photo shoots until 3 am, and then right back at it the following morning.  Collaborating with a dear friend on some artwork...something I love doing these days, and working, working, working!


We also had some bad things happen in the past few weeks, friends and acquaintances who passed, some who had lived very long and interesting lives, and others taken too soon by the ravages of cancer.

Our dear neighbor George was one of those who lived a long and interesting life.  When we moved into this house 5 years ago, George was a spry 95 years young, living completely independently, driving his sweet dog to obedience each week, and tending to his beautiful garden.  I'll never forget that at our Christmas party he showed our son his itouch and told him that when the newest model came out he would sell him his old one for a good price.

Because George was one of the oldest living WWII veterans, I had the opportunity to interview him for a magazine, and what I learned was that George wasn't just any WWII veteran, he was the Forrest Gump of soldiers, having seen action in some of the most hostile and critical arenas of the war, and bearing witness to things most people only see in movies.  From there he ended up in India for a few years, and through all of his experiences he embraced moving forward, choosing not to dwell in the past.

He used to joke that he would make it to 100 or die trying, and it was that great sense of humor I will miss at our neighborhood gatherings.  George did indeed make it to his 100th birthday last December when his family hosted a wonderful celebration of his long and storied life.  In true George fashion, he made it to 100 and a half, passing away on the exact date that he turned that impressive age.

I don't think George ever really knew how much of an impact he had on those around him, how much of an inspiration he was, and what an example he set for embracing life no matter what age it says you are on a piece of paper.

He didn't complain about technology, but instead embraced it.  He didn't let a number dictate what he could or couldn't do, he simply lived life the way he wanted too and I firmly believe that it was that attitude that kept him healthy up until just a few months before his passing.  George lived completely independently until his 100th birthday when he decided to move to an assisted living facility, still tending his garden, driving, and caring for his beloved dachshund, and constant companion Hummel.

We could all learn a little bit from George as we frantically go buzzing through life like a little hummingbird.  He taught me to live the life I have right now instead of wasting time pining for the past or longing for the future.  He taught me to embrace change and to move with the times. But the most important thing he taught me was that no matter what your age, you can do anything you set your mind to, that the limit is not in the number, but in how we perceive the number.

If you don't believe me, that age is just a number, please read the short article linked HERE and watch a bit of the video which was shot at an obedience trial when George was 98 years old!!!  He was so proud of this video and showed it to us on his itouch...RIP George, though you are gone you have inspired so many and your legacy will live on forever, you will be greatly missed!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Long Overdue

Broken lawnmowers, nails in tires, art appointments, industrial air purifiers, doctor's appointments, and dead computers, want to know what all of these things have in common...well they're all associated with moi!

The last few weeks have been a blur.  You know the kind, where even in your dreams you are behind the eight ball or atop the highest point in the universe with no visible way down...yeah that was last night's fun dream!  The kind of pace where the bullet train goes whizzing past you in a blur, but you're on one of those hand crank railway seesaw car thingies like they always had in the cartoons, pumping your heart out to try and catch up.  Phew, I need a vacation and there's none on the horizon, so the crazy train will have to keep chugging a few more months.

Yesterday, it dawned on me that I never showed you my friend Melissa's beautiful shop photos that I told you I would show you last month.  I made a promise to myself that today would be the day I would get the post done, and then like magic I saw Melissa at Panera last night...you gotta love how the universe works sometimes don't you?!  Like it was saying to me..."remember, you said today, this means you better do that post, you promised...see there she is!" 

So below is my LONG overdue post filled with lots of lovely photos from her amazing store.  But before we get to all the pretties, I'm also long overdue in thanking each and every one of you who commented on my last post.  I haven't returned a single email or comment from that post and I feel sick about it.  The fact is that I read them all and each one gave me a greater and greater sense of comfort regarding our empty nest, so thank you!  And thank Mr. Tide for fixing my dead computer so that I could come here to say what should have been said within just a few days of posting...THANKS, you guys rock!

And because I've blathered on enough for one post, I will let the pictures do most of the talking for The Right Mix, Antiques and Fine Art, owned by my dear friend Missy/Melissa Geimer!  Enjoy!

Beautiful antique oil paintings...check!

  Gorgeous silver serveware, including antique samovars...yup she has what you need!

 Beautiful antique furniture and rugs, including burl wood and a baby grand piano...whatever you need to tickle your fancy!

 In need of a little sparkle in your life, or maybe just an Aidan Gray fix...well you've come to the right place...or should I say The Right Mix! ;-)

And did I mention that she also carries accessories for yourself (she even sells antique jewelry), or your home, Missy has you covered, at her shop you'll find giftware too, including cards and napkins.

And because Missy understands that every well dressed home deserves a beautiful setting, she offers an array of beautiful garden accessories to boot.

I think you can see why I love this shop, and why I think the name The Right Mix is perfectly suited to it, it truly is a wonderful mix of must haves!  If you were to take a quick lap around my house right now you'd find one of her armillaries gracing my front flower bed, a beautiful antique blue and white creamer sitting on the tea cart in my dining room, and a gorgeous white German Shepard statue atop the Hepplewhite chest in my living room...not to mention some wonderful paper napkins in the drawer of my buffet waiting for guests, or to use as hostess gifts.  So not only do I love Missy's shop, but I love how her wonderful gifts and antiques have helped me create the right mix in my own home!  And the best part is that she's always finding new treasures so each time you visit her shop you're sure to find something new to bring home!

I hope you enjoyed this little tour of The Right Mix located in Leonardtown, Maryland, and I hope you'll have the opportunity to visit it yourself one day and meet Missy, who is one of the sweetest women on the planet, and I'm not exaggerating when I tell you that!

The shop isn't open every day, but you can always contact Missy/Melissa via email at missygeimer@yahoo.com or you can phone her at 480-365-8871 to schedule an appointment, and please tell her Kat says hello!

Thank you Missy for letting me invade your space and take photos of your beautiful shop!

25775 Point Lookout Rd
in the Nationwide Building
Suite 2
Leonardtown, MD 20650

Hours:  Fridays and Saturdays from 11 am to 5 pm


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Feeling Blue

Today it finally hit me that I have an empty nest.  As I gathered up laundry and began cleaning my house, I realized that I didn't have as many towels and sheets to clean, and that the hall bathroom sink and shower were dry as a bone from lack of use since our son moved out a week ago.

For the first time in almost 25 years, it was just me in the house, that no one besides the dogs needed tending to today, and I have to admit that I broke down in tears.  I know this is the way life is supposed to work, but dang it, nobody really prepares you for that last little birdie to leave the nest.

I decided that instead of feeling sorry for myself, I would do what all momma birds must do when they find themselves alone in the nest, so I set about cleaning, rearranging, and embracing this next phase of my life.  And I brought in a bunch of pretty hydrangea blossoms that my dear neighbor said I could have and plunked them into a lovely mason jar that once belonged to my grandmother.  

I know it will take time for me to adjust to my youngest having flown the coop, but I managed to do that with our oldest, so I know it's possible.  And even though he, and our daughter, are both not far away, today it felt as though they were continents away.  I also know that if I still had little babies to tend to that I wouldn't be launching into a whole new career, so there is always a silver lining to be found, even when you wonder where the last 25 years have gone!

On Thursday, Mr. Tide and I will celebrate our 26th wedding anniversary, and for the first time since a year and a few months after we got married, we will be celebrating in a house built for 2 again.  Change is good for the soul I think, even if it comes with a few tears and feeling a little blue every now and again!

Thanks everyone for your wonderful comments and emails about my new venture...at least I can't say I'm bored now that my kids are grown and living on their own, eh?!  

Enjoy your week, the weather is near perfection here!