Saturday, February 2, 2008

Miscellaneous This and That

Our latest addition to our art collection is this pen and ink of Pine Hall. This was not an easy task for the artist, given that the house is difficult to see unobstructed, due to the multitude of tree trunks which occupy the front yard area. Steve did a terrific job! He captured the house beautifully, and with surprising detail.

The new neighbors moved into their house just last week. They sit directly across from our cul de sac, on the cross street. We can see their house from our library. We haven't met them yet, but warmer weather is on the way (72 on Tuesday), and as people come out of their homes for spring, we should be able to meet them then.

Elsewhere in the enclave, construction continues like mad. The footings are poured for the latest structure (next to the new people's home), and the blocks have been delivered for the foundation work to begin. Further down the street, four homes in a row are going up, and all look within a few months of completion. Several of them are apparently already contracted. We spotted a relatively young military man, and his three young sons, walking on the empty lot behind us late last week. Could he be a potential buyer?!!

The adjacent city park construction (Phase II) is moving right along as well. The nature trails leading to our neighborhood may even be completed by summer!

Yvonne visited several weeks ago, and could not believe how drastically the area has changed in the three years since she's been gone. We've been growing by leaps and bounds ... She didn't get the opportunity to see everyone from her NC days, and is thinking about a return trip later in the year. Perhaps she'll make it back down in time for the lovely fall displays.

February's free time is filling fast! We have something scheduled for just about every weekend. And, of course, we are already into our countdown calendar for Rick's arrival in late March. (We are looking forward to that, Ricky!) Don's been alerted, so perhaps the brothers can grab some sibling time together. This photo was taken during Rick's spring trip here in 2007. He happened to catch part of the spring bloom season in mid-April. Pine Hall is pictured in the background.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Annual Hilton Head Island Gathering

Hilton Head Island Trip

We just returned from the HH get-together. Everyone had a wonderful time! The condo is being renovated, and the seaside gray clapboard is being replaced with white siding. It will have a crisp, new look for next year's mid-winter break! Pictured left, Von (in cream) and Ruth (in red) stroll along along the marina in Harbour Town, admiring the many yachts moored there, while on the way to cocktails at the Crazy Crab. That is the Hilton Head lighthouse pictured (thus the name of the street, "Lighthouse Road"). While in Harbour Town, Denise looked up her favorite Hajime Namiki print, just to admire the workmanship and talent one more time!

Ray went walking most days, but didn't remember, realize, or notice there were alligators around - everywhere. In fact, when we pointed it out to him, he thought at first we were joking. (We weren't.) It almost goes without saying, Ray eliminated the early evening walks along the waterways, when the reptiles liked to stroll around too - browsing for food. And yes, once Ray was aware of them, he did spot some gators - big ones - on the prowl. He never noticed all the posted warning signs, like this one (pictured on a nearby footbridge) along his walking route! Golfers on the course rarely have to worry about the alligators, but if a ball goes in a water hazard, I've noticed no one wades in after it. Hmmmmmm ... maybe they worry after all.
It was nice to soak in the pretty views of palm trees and dripping spanish moss from the trees. But mostly, it was great just seeing everyone again and enjoying each others' company! We really missed Joe this year, but we know he was with us in spirit.
The 2008 adventure included the usual, plus some newly invented sign language, based on Hippos ... it was used most often during Larry's tall tales for some strange reason ... Thanks for the memories, Everyone! It was truly a lot of fun!! And Von, the Ruby Tuesday's on I-26 is almost exactly the halfway point! (We clocked it coming back.) Have fun in Florida!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Pine Hall Happenings - Musings from the Senior Executive Estate Manager

Pine Hall, so named because it is an English-style country house - or hall - located in a pine grove, will soon get ready for the upcoming holiday season.

Our custom-made drapes are now hanging in the breakfast room, off the kitchen. This was the last public room still needing window treatments. It was worth the wait! (Thanks, Judy, your workmanship is flawless, and your skills greatly admired.) We can consider the breakfast room now complete.

The panels were installed just before the big October dinner party. I wasn't sure where we would fit so many people for a sit-down dinner, but we managed quite well. We moved the breakfast room table into the gallery, and borrowed Trish and Brad's 8-foot folding table, which we used in the kitchen. Between the two rooms, and the dining room, everyone was assured a comfortable seat.

Our next Pine Hall event will be the December 8th Supper Club progressive dinner. We'll have our work cut out for us, if we are to get the house decorated between Thanksgiving and that Saturday! The drought continues, so we won't have snow to accompany our decorating efforts this year.

The autumn colors are peaking in the mountains now, so we are planning a car caravan up to one of the best vantage points for viewing. And before we know it, Thanksgiving will be here. We are looking forward to some traditional family time.

Christian and Jackson did a fine job of maintaining the fence area between properties last weekend. They were supervised by the hounds, and the weekend grounds supervisor (Don).

A shout out to two cool cats from the Chicago area, Cirrus and Wrigley! (Okay, Rick and Joe!!) We'll be seeing you shortly.