Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians, 4. 8

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Love and Faith

What a great title for two of my favorite people. One came into my life 30 years ago and has been my best friend ever since. God had a plan. Did I ever share it with you? Jason and I went to High School together. He was in the class ahead of me. In a small high school you know everyone...people didn't move around like they do today. I knew Jason, he had quite a reputation, but we ran in different crowds. In 1971 he and I were in a wedding together. He was best friends with the groom and I was best friends with the bride. We sat together at the rehearsal dinner and I told him I was engaged. Later he told me his thoughts were ...oh well...there's another pretty girl no longer available. In 1979 we were reintroduced through the same couple...I visited them in South Florida and Jason and I went on a "blind" date. He shares that he was praying for a wife...and when he heard I was visiting Valerie..he KNEW that I was the woman he had been praying for. He thought back to the last time he saw me...the rehearsal dinner...and he remembered my "beautiful green eyes". That was in August, 1979. We were married in March, 1980. I have always thought that was SO ROMANTIC. I still do. I make him tell me every year. I think he likes to tell me, too. The second person came into my life in 1995. Hannah "Itabit" O'Donnell. She has been a blessing from the first time I held her in my arms. She continues to bless me. So beautiful, so bright, so full of life.
Ask me if I am rich and I will always say yes. Rich in family...God has truly blessed me beyond measure.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

We just returned from a relaxing week in Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg compliments of Robin and Michael ~ my 58th Birthday Week. They reserved a one bedroom condo at a resort in PF and we used that as our home base all week. We really enjoyed our visit to Cades Cove...a definite must on any tour of the area. We visited twice. We also had a delicious dinner in Helen Georgia on our way up to Tennessee. It was reminiscent of my childhood...good home cooked German food....we ordered KING LUDWIGS FEAST FOR TWO and got a taste of everything...so Yummy. I will post photos another time.

The Cove is best seen via Cades Cove Loop Road, which is a one way paved lane that skirts the bottoms of the forested mountains which surrounds the fields of the valley floor. The Loop Road takes Smokies vacationers on a historical tour of early pioneer farms, fields, roads and trails. We left the Smokie's with the feeling that we witnessed something wonderful and wholesome.

We also discovered Roaring Fork Nature Trail, a similar loop road in Gatlinburg. Both areas are filled with History and wildlife. I did see, after much whining and praying...2 bears....many deer and some wild turkeys.

We were fortunate to be able to hear one of the park rangers speak at one of our stops. Very interesting. We also visited the Artists Community in Gatlinburg. We were thrilled to find this ~ away from the commercial downtown touristy area...met some of the local artists who explained that they all moved out of the downtown years ago...this community of approximately 100 artists was well worth the visit. We also enjoyed the Old Mill area of Pigeon Forge. The restaurant was outstanding.

We had perfect weather, good food, quality time together. A most enjoyable, well needed vacation and the perfect BIRTHDAY WEEK.