Cindy's Country Mix

do it yourself projects, watercolor


Atlanta Botanical Garden

Today, our friends took us to the Atlanta Botanical Garden.  The weather was good to us in that it wasn’t too humid, nor too hot.

Flowers are my favorite subject for watercolor.  So, I was hoping there would be some flowers there that I could capture with my camera and take home for later painting projects.  I was not disappointed.

pink tulip

Pink Tulips

yellow tulip

Yellow Tulip


Canopy Walk

We walked across a very unique bridge called the Canopy Walk.  It was 600 feet long and took us through the tree tops of the Storza Woods with it’s highest elevation at 40 feet.


Dainty Flowers.

blue flower delphinium

Blue Delphinium

chinese snowball

Chinese Snowball

red tulips

Red Tulips

swiss chard

Swiss Chard

There was also an edible garden in which grew a large variety of plants including this beautiful Swiss Chard.  The outdoor kitchen provides gourmet chefs a stage for giving classes and tips on using freshly harvested, healthful produce.



Orchids were abundant in the Fuqua Orchid Center.  The simulated tropical climate made us sweat, as if we weren’t hot enough already.



The colorful flowers and plants were worth a little heat.



Colorful plant

Colorful plant.

fountain and tulips

Tulips surround fountain.

Tulips were very abundant throughout the entire gardens, as were azaleas.  In the Levy Parterre flower beds are arranged symmetrically around an Italian limestone fountain.

fountain glass Dale Chihuly

Glass fountain

The fountain features artist Dale Chihuly‘s unique blue and white glass sculpture.

We had a wonderful time.  The only thing that could have made it better would have been if the magnolia trees were in bloom.  Maybe next time.

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Old Clarksville

Our family recently went for a short trip to old, downtown Clarksville, Tennessee.  My daughter and I thought it would be fun to go and take pictures around town.  We also thought that the rest of the family might enjoy going along.  Wrong.

As we walked up the main street, we heard some nice horn playing and it sounded live to us.  The other part of the family continued on up the street, while my daughter and I followed the sounds of trumpet.

street performer, trumpet player

Photo by: S Glover Photography

And here you see our street performer.  He greeted us kindly and picked up his silver trumpet.  The old town was pretty deserted on this non-weekend day, but he was there filling the air with his beautiful melodies.

old clarksville tennessee Roxy street

There they go down the street.  My favorite thing about this antique town was the paint color that they used on all the sign posts, benches, trashcans, light posts, parking meters, and grates.  Aqua is my favorite color.  I can’t be anything but happy when looking at it.

old Clarksville episcopal church

This is Trinity Parish Episcopal Church.  We thought it looked striking with those bright red doors.  The kids wanted to see the inside, but upon trying the door we found it locked.  Remember the days when churches were open?  Sad days that they now have to be locked for fear of vandalism. I asked my grandkids, “Where will we go if we ever need asylum?”  They just gave me blank stares.

brick building wall

The neat pattern of this brick wall caught my eye and my granddaughter seemed to enjoy the feel of it’s texture.

old building of brick

Our route was a short one.  Remember at the beginning I mentioned we were wrong about the enjoyment rest of the family would feel on our photo shoot.  The complaints and whining were abundant.  Our concentration was foggy.  The buildings were old and charming.  Most were well kept, but a few were suffering from disrepair.

We left the ‘fam’ on a bench while my daughter and I headed into a couple of antique stores to enjoy a little browsing.  She and I love looking at old things and imagining their past.  My daughter is just a young 30 something, but she has a love for all things old, cemeteries, and things that tell a story.  We have that in common, we do.

antique shuttered window

After our mini tour, we had all finished climbing into the car when my grandson said, “Look at that old window.”  Whoa.  That is a beautiful window.  What great character!  So, they waited, without complaining I might add, while we snapped a few quick shots.  And this ended our little tour of the old downtown of Clarksville, Tennessee.

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A Soldier’s Welcome

Last night, er, rather this morning at 1:45 AM, I accompanied my daughter on a photo shoot.  She was taking pictures of a soldier’s homecoming for friends.  We met the wife and the soldier’s parents at the specified hanger.  I was expecting a much larger group of people to be present at the welcome home ceremony.  Perhaps the time of day was a discouraging factor for some.  However, for me and my daughter it was an honor to be present to welcome these men and women home from duty.  We have our own soldier currently on tour in Afghanistan that we expect home sometime in the near future.

American flag

There were welcoming banners hung around the perimeter of the hanger and of course a few of my favorite symbols also.  Like, this enormous American flag which was hung as a most excellent backdrop for the speaker’s platform.

airborne patch

Being as this is Fort Campbell, Kentucky, this is the home of the 101st Airborne, the Screaming Eagles!

We spent about an hour together waiting for the plane to arrive.  Three of us were armed with cameras and kept ourselves busy practicing and experimenting with exposure and aperture settings and comparing notes.  About 15 minutes before the plane was to arrive we sneaked out through a less conspicuous exit to the outside greeting area.  This way we were able to acquire the BEST spot for observing the skies and snapping the soldiers when they would disembark.

soldiers returning to America by plane

After what seemed like a long time, we saw the bright, white light in the distance that signaled to us that the plane was arriving.  The rest of the crowd from inside the hanger had also found their way outside with us.  The taxi down the runway, also, seemed to be laboriously slow.  I heard multiple comments along the line of “get that plane down here already!” Then, we waited for the door to open and the soldiers to disembark.  This plane is filled with some of America’s ‘guardians’.  These men and women serve in the military to protect the freedoms that allow you to enjoy simple pleasures like driving around in your beautiful car, eating at your favorite restaurant, or even sitting in peace on your comfortable couch watching your favorite show or movie.

If you have never been to a welcome home party, you can now see that there is a LOT of waiting.  But, it just seems to add to the excitement.  The soldiers soon filed off of the airplane and grouped in formation at the side of the building after a lot of hooting and hollering by the waiting families and friends.

soldier's wife and mom waiting

At that time we all headed back into the building to, AGAIN, wait for the soldiers to enter the hanger. Tap, tap, tap, came the sound from many an impatient toe!  😉

American soldiers homecoming

Here they come! FINALLY, they are here!!  My soldier is here!  Wait, what?  I have to wait some more?  Really?  Yup.  Now we stand while they play a couple of songs.  Then we sit while they share a few words.  Then we stand again for this and sit some more for that.  Toes are definitely tapping!

woman runs to greet her husband

Yes!  We are released to give that long awaited greeting to our amazing soldier.  RUN! And you know the wait was worth every second.

crowd of people

After all of the waiting, the soldiers and their families eventually find each other.  Since I was just an observer on this occasion, I sat down on the bleachers and just watched all of the interaction.  On this particular night, I witnessed a small example of the suffering that our soldiers can experience.  In the foreground of the above photo, there is a woman dressed in black holding a baby.  She is waiting for her soldier to find her and he does.  His little son is about one year old.  He doesn’t know his daddy at all.  In his mind he has never seen this man before.  I watched as the dad tried to say hello to the baby with gentleness and smiling.  The little baby just cried every time and turned away in his momma’s arms.  I know this is temporary, but it reminded me of the parts of life that we can take for granted.  Having our loved ones close most of the time.  Seeing our children as they grow up.  Many of these soldiers are missing from their homes, on deployment, multiple times during their term of service.

Screaming Eagles Fort Campbell KY

Thank you Screaming Eagles for the price you pay to serve our country for my freedom.  Many people are not so appreciative, but I, for one, am thankful for you everyday.  God bless you.

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

Psalm 91:1&2

Thanks for stopping by.  You can also chat with me on Facebook or Twitter and follow me on Pinterest.


About the ads that follow: They are not placed by me  and are not associated with this post.  They are placed by WordPress on blogs that are free.  Thank you for your understanding.