Riot of Color

Apparently I didn’t get enough of the fall colors from earlier this week.  Yesterday I went both to our local park and the botanical gardens.  The trees are a riot of colors in central Virginia and although the air was cool, I had a great time walking all morning and taking pictures.

© 2011 dogear6 llc

Word for tomorrow – LESS.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Bed and Breakfast Instead Of A Hotel

The pictures from chasing the fall colors are on Shutterfly and can be found at  Please remember that the copyright rules at the right apply.

My favorite boy toy and I made a decision with our recent trip to stay again in a bed and breakfast, as we did in May when we went to Pennsylvania (see Thursday in this post).  Having done it for a second time, we will definitely be doing it more in the future.

So why a B&B instead of a hotel?

  • Quiet – typically children under 12 are not allowed nor are pets
  • Limited number of guests
  • Breakfast the next morning – a gourmet treat
  • Clean – and I mean clean
  • Common rooms where you can spread out books & laptops, visit with other guests, and relax
  • Innkeepers who visit, want to know what you did, offer suggestions, and answer multiple questions – they’ve answered so many questions they know what you should be asking even if you don’t
  • Pride of ownership of sharing their home with you
  • Warm welcomes and warm goodbyes

There are some downsides to a bed and breakfast.  Once a reservation is made, it is difficult to change on short notice without a penalty.  A B&B can be more expensive than a hotel, depending on where you stay.  There’s no gift shop or vending machines, although both places provided after hours snacks and drinks.  The breakfast menu is set unless you’ve made a special request or have dietary restrictions that you mentioned beforehand.

This time we stayed at Laurel Lodge in Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia, run by Chris Craig and his partner, Ed Wheeless.  I didn’t take many pictures of it as their website has good photos on it.  The rooms were very comfortable, the house beautifully decorated, and it was in a wonderful location overlooking the Potomac River.  It was at the end of a quiet street, complete with a friendly black cat who came for a pet each time we went in and out to our car.

All three breakfasts were incredible!  We started with juice and a homemade bread (scones, biscuits, coffee cake), a fruit (stewed apple crumble, fresh fruit, broiled grapefruit), and a main dish (omelets, pumpkin waffles one day).  It was the highlight of the day.

There are several ways to find a bed and breakfast on the Internet.  You can Google for bed and breakfast + city name + state.  Two great sites that I use are and  I read reviews and go out to the individual websites to look at pictures and read descriptions.  I also put my own reviews out there afterwards.  These are very small businesses and a good review will help them get future business.

Laurel Lodge in Harper's Ferry

Word for tomorrow – RIOT.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Sunk Costs = Skyline Wandering

As I was musing on how to use today’s word, I did a Google search and found the term, “sunk costs”, a term I have not used for a long, long time.  Wikitionary defines it as “a cost that has already been incurred and which cannot be recovered to any significant degree.”

Which explains perfectly why we did Skyline Drive on our way back from vacation.  We’d already stayed an extra night in Harper’s Ferry and I’d already taken an extra vacation day.  Those were sunk costs that would not be recovered.  There would be some new prospective cost – i.e., :”future costs that may be incurred or changed if an action is taken” – in other words, our gas and a few more meals out.

So we drove the Skyline Drive, taking eight hours to get home.  That included the time driving to it and from it, the time on it (3 hours due to the 35 mph speed limit), and pulling into every overlook to see the scenery.  We had a blast.  We’d not done it before and we now did the entire length of it.

Thanks to everyone for their kind words on the pictures.  I posted them for my staff who wanted to see the scenery and have been wonderfully surprised at everyone else who’s enjoyed them also.  This weekend I will get them onto Shutterfly and send out a link, in case you wanted to see them large size (this also by request of my staff at work).

Here are pictures from our day on Skyline Drive.  I was asked how to do the slideshows in WordPress.  This link will take you to the directions for it.  If you have trouble, leave me a comment and I’m happy to help you out.

Have a good weekend!

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Word for tomorrow – AIR.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Chasing Fall Colors – Day 3

My favorite boy toy and I were out all day yesterday to take pictures.  We hiked up and down hills and stairs, visited battlefields, and did some driving around the countryside.

After a late supper, we went straight to bed, which is why there were no photos this morning for you. Today was a drive back the long way home via Skyline Drive.  This goes through the Blue Ridge Mountains of the Shenandoah National Park on the western side of Virginia.  We pulled off at nearly every overlook, even if it wasn’t picturesque enough to take photos.

So here are photos from yesterday, then I’m off to unpack and get ready for bed.  Tomorrow is back to regularly scheduled programming (i.e., back to work).

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Word for tomorrow – CONDUCTOR.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Chasing Fall Colors – Day 2

My favorite boy toy and I spent all day yesterday outside, hiking and taking pictures.  Needless to say, we were pretty tired by the end of the day.  The lighting wasn’t too good, but adjusting my pictures will have to wait for a different day.

Here’s some more pictures for you.  We’re having fun exploring and I will share more later.

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Just a reminder that today is All Saint’s Day.  Although it is not a biblical or legal holiday, it is a good day to remember those who are no longer here and give a prayer of thanks for the good things they brought to your life.

Word for tomorrow – BLOGGER’S CHOICE.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.


Fall Colors in West Virginia

My favorite boy toy and myself are off chasing the fall colors.  I had a different topic in mind for today’s post, but my staff wants to see pictures.  So here’s a slide show of yesterday’s highlights, straight from the camera.

There’s snow up here, although it’s melting quickly.  The colors are pretty, but we haven’t yet found many places to take pictures from.  Since never been here before, it’s a learning curve of driving around, getting lost, and asking questions.

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By the way, today is a favorite anniversary of mine – Reformation Day.  For a modern English translation of Martin Luther’s objections to the Catholic teachings in 1517, click hereCharisma Magazine had a recent article on the need for reformation within today’s church that is worth reading.  Don’t stop reading because it talks about reform in the charismatic churches – this article has application to all religions.

Word for tomorrow – BLOGGER’S CHOICE.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Rake Leaves For Fun

One of the places we lived allowed leaves to be burned in the yards.  Our yard, while small, had a number of mature trees.  I enjoyed going out to rake the leaves and exercise in the cool air of fall.  We set aside a corner of the yard for burning the leaves; it was so satisfying to stand there, leaning on the rake, enjoying the heat of the fire and smelling the leaves burning.

I usually raked the leaves by myself, but when they started burning, my favorite toy boy and the child would stand around with me to enjoy this.  I probably should have insisted they raked with me, but I enjoyed the solitude of the yard and the mindless action of raking.

It’s hard to believe we are officially into fall.  Leaves are just starting to turn here, although peak colors are usually about four weeks away from now.   This picture is from upstate New York, which has gorgeous fall colors even though you can’t burn the leaves in your yard :)

Have a good weekend!

© 2011 dogear6 llc

Word for tomorrow – ABROAD.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.

Attributes of Fall

© 2011 dogear6 llc
Fall is definitely on its way.  One of the attributes of fall is the various scents, from fallen leaves to baked apples to cooked pumpkin.  Or in the case of my garden, winter squash.  I started harvesting them several weeks ago.  They need to cure for 7 to 10 days before cooking, and tonight was the night to try them out.


© 2011 dogear6 llc

They were delicious and the house smells of fall tonight.

Word for tomorrow – CONVINCING.  If you prefer to work ahead, see the list for the week under “A Word A Day”.