31 December 2015

Resurrection Fern

Resurrection Fern on a live oak branch, Charleston, SC  
I googled Resurrection Fern to see what words of wisdom I could share about this lovely green treat that springs to life on the branches of the live oak trees and discovered it had it's own song by Iron & Wine:
    In our days we will live
    Like our ghosts will live...
    Pitching glass at the cornfield crows
    And folding clothes
    Like stubborn boys across the road
    We'll keep everything...
    Grandma's gun and the black bear claw
    That took her dog
    When sister Laurie says, "Amen"
    We won't hear anything...
    The ten-car trains will take that word
    That fledgling bird
    And the fallen house across the way
    It'll keep everything...
    The baby's breath
    Our bravery wasted and our shame
    And we'll undress beside the ashes of the fire
    Both our tender bellies wound in baling wire
    All the more a pair of underwater pearls
    Than the oak tree and its resurrection fern
    In our days we will say
    What our ghosts will say...
    We gave the world what it saw fit
    And what'd we get?

30 December 2015

This little Piggy

Piggy holiday decor, Charleston, SC 
This little piggy dresses up for Christmas! So does his partner on the other side of the steps.

My understanding is that the home belongs to the owners of the former Piggly Wiggly grocery store chain and I always know they will do something fun with the guard pigs for the holidays.

29 December 2015

Freshly painted & gift wrapped

4 South Battery, Charleston, SC  
One of Charleston's most beautifully renovated homes looks pretty as a picture gift wrapped for the holidays.
The Villa Margherita is an Italian Renaissance house at 4 South Battery, Charleston, South Carolina. It was built in 1892 and early 1893 for Andrew Simonds. The house is of brick with a Portland cement coating according to the plans by the architect, Frederick P. Dinkelberg. The decorative work on the four Corinthian columns and frieze on the front was executed by Morrison Brothers of New York City. The entrance of the house features a large atrium with a fountain.[1]Between 1905 and 1953, the house served as a hotel. During that use, guests included William Howard TaftGrover Cleveland, andTheodore Roosevelt.[2] Sinclair Lewis was a guest at the hotel, where he completed the manuscript for Main Street.[3] From 1943 to 1946, the United Seaman's Service leased the hotel and rented rooms to seamen and their families.[4] In 1961, James and Mary Wilson bought the house. Their daughter, Mary Wilson, sold it for $3 million to Stephen and Mary Hammond in September 2012.[5]
I love this no-man's land of a week between Christmas and New Years and I'd like to have a couple more please. No meetings, few phone calls, a chance to finish up projects for the year and get things ready for the next. I met friends at Sesame for their half price burger night on the way home.

28 December 2015

Dressed for the holidays

Citadel Bulldog, Charleston, SC 
I don't do very well with festive-wear which is unfortunate since I participate in so many holiday luncheons and festive events. I don't have much red and/or green in my closet. I should take some wardrobe lessons from our neighborhood bulldog. A cheery wreath around my neck with bells dangling might be just the ticket!

27 December 2015

Picnic in the park

Hampton Park, Charleston, SC  
I come from a picnic packing family. My grandmother always had a hamper half packed and ready to go. We'd go to parks and rivers and as a child I have fond memories of packed lunches at Niagara Falls and on the other side of the world Ward's Lake

I asked for suggestions on Facebook for picnic location ideas and this is what was offered. I think I've been to each place even if I haven't spread a blanket and eaten at each of them. 

Angel Oak
Morris island Lighthouse
Cypress Gardens
Mepkin Abbey
Edisto Island
Cannon Park
Magnolia Plantation
Under the Ravenel Bridge
Old Santee Canal State Park
White Point Gardens and walk the Battery

Today we went to Hampton Park and it was fun to listen to everyone's memories of the park - from when it had a zoo to childhood birthday parties this lovely park has happy memories for so many. Great friends, good food, lovely weather and a beautiful spot. I am making the most of the last few days of 2015. 

Thanks for the Christmas smile!

Santa Hat, Tradd & Meeting St., Charleston, SC  
I loooooooove people who go to so much trouble just to make us smile. The Santa hat is made by sail makers and put up every year after the Halloween witch's hat has been taken down. Thanks to the homeowner for the delightful moment she creates for so many as they pass by. 

26 December 2015

Fogscape Charleston

Broad St., Charleston, SC 
Fog does funny things to camera buffs. I was tortured by the choice of places to go in this morning's mist. Magnolia Cemetery, beach, downtown? I settled on the peninsula because I've been tardy this year in capturing Charleston's Christmas festive wear. I made the right decision. Each corner I turned I got more excited with the scene.  What a beautiful city we live in.

Home to a refrigerator full of tasty holiday left-overs just the way I like it. I settled in with Moroccan chicken, roasted cauliflower and the Call the Midwife Holiday special.

25 December 2015

Merry Christmas!

Midnight, Christmas Eve, Charleston, SC 
I admit I didn't take this picture. I was sleeping tucked away in a cabin on Lake Marion at midnight and my friend Leah Sparks stayed up late and did the honors.

Our hospital has a lovely nativity scene but the manger lays empty until Christmas eve. Baby Jesus waits in the nursery with the rest of the Christmas babies until midnight when the nursing staff escorts Him outside and lays Him in the manger. It is a sweet tradition.

Merry Christmas everyone!

23 December 2015

Winter in the Meditation Garden

Meditation Garden, Charleston, SC  
I hate to boast but I walk past this scene every day as I was from my car to my office. The light was perfect this morning and I took a detour through the garden. I do have a picture of a layer of snow in this garden but that won't be happening this year. We have unseasonably warm weather.

Is everyone ready for Christmas? I am taking a holiday mid January so I have been working like a fiend to get things done ahead of time. Check, check, checking off my list. I couldn't find a receipt for reimbursement this morning and almost had to stoop to cleaning off my desk.

22 December 2015

Hand-painted signs

D & D Restaurant, Spring St., Charleston, SC  
I am a sucker for hand-painted signs. I love any place that has hired a sign painter rather than using computer generated signs. Thank you D & D Restaurant.

I'd never been in but googling for information I came up with this referral from Chef Joshua Walker:

Favorite under-the-radar spot: D&D Restaurant & Catering (114 Spring St, 843-722-2205)Walker says: “It’s an old-school, traditional neighborhood hangout, with nice folks drinking beer and listening to good music. Get the fried shrimp or ask for the ribs.”

20 December 2015

Dollhouse in the attic

Ashley Avenue, Charleston, SC 
I always look up to say hello to the dollhouse in the attic window on Ashley Avenue. What a great view it's tiny occupants have! Imagine them looking out of their double window to see  the action on the street.

I hope everyone has had a good weekend. I just got back from the Christmas Choir & Lessons evening at beautiful historic St. Stephen's church on Anson St. It was lovely.

19 December 2015

New Vegan Cafe - Gnome Cafe

Gnome Cafe, Charleston, SC 
I finally made it to Charleston's new vegan cafe - Gnome Cafe. I had my eye on the restaurant because my friend Saramel is one of owner/managers and I pass it every time I drive into town on Cannon St. It is painted black with a white gnome logo design but inside everything is fresh and white and green.

I made a quick connection with my facebook friend Jo who owns the Bead store just down the street and we found Saramel on duty bright and early in the cafe and it was filling up quickly. I am not vegan but found plenty of items I'd be happy to try. I ordered the breakfast burrito with tofu scramble, guacamole, potatoes and mango salsa. It was tasty and delicious and we shared a cinnamon roll.

I hope everyone is having a good weekend. I just made pralines (to give as gifts, naturally) and left a generous amount in the pot to scrape and lick so I am off to put myself into a sugar coma. Yum!

18 December 2015

American Gothic - Medical Version

Medical Gothic, Charleston, SC 
The painting American Gothic by Grant Wood is perhaps the most spoofed and photo shopped image of all so I couldn't resist. I grabbed my friends Bill and Lauren during their precious lunch hour and we did a quick photo re-enactment. I grin every time I look at the image. Gosh, I work with such good sports!


17 December 2015

Gingerbread Decorating Contest

Gingerbread Decorating Contest, Charleston, SC  
Somehow I ended up running the employee Gingerbread decorating contest today - with a little help from my friends and a lot of talented contestants. I am amazed and delighted at the work folks put into these entries. Ho, ho, ho!

16 December 2015

If you like it put a blanket on it

North Charleston, SC  
Lucky for her we've had a warm fall and winter so far but I'll keep my eye out for a snugly jacket before we get a real chill. North Charleston Riverfront Park hosts a national outdoor sculpture competition that brings some interesting work to our area and is well worth a visit. Here is the full version of our gal standing on her poor victim.

Holiday parties continue at work - the Ambulatory Surgery nurses cook an amazing feast and invite all their volunteers to an annual feast. They could publish a cookbook based on this meal alone - ham, crockpot mac & cheese, potato salad, deviled eggs spread out all over the conference room. No wonder their volunteer team works so hard. 

14 December 2015

Bearly Winter

Charleston, SC  
It almost looks like fall! It has been oddly warm lately but the leaves are yellow and dropping. I can't keep up with the layer of leaves in my yard. My bear was nicely posing in the bright color. It tickles me to no end seeing him looking as if he has strolled through the trees from the neighbor's property.

13 December 2015

Camellia season

Camellia, Charleston, SC  
I found the camellia while working in the yard this morning and looking around for a vase, decided that it fit perfectly in a tea cup. The tea cup happens to be my mother's china pattern - Royal Albert Apple Blossom. After she passed away my sister Shirley made sure each of the Perry sisters had a china cup and saucer in the pattern and this is mine.

I hope everyone has had a good weekend. I went to a Christmas choir concert last night at the East Cooper Baptist Church and it was exactly what I needed to put me in the holiday mood. It was wonderful. 

12 December 2015

Meet the Muslims in your neigborhood

Central Mosque of Charleston, Charleston, SC  
The Central Mosque of Charleston hosted an open house this afternoon offering people a chance to learn about their faith and "Meet your Muslim Neighbor" and they were happily surprised by the number of people who responded. The mosque was filled with people learning and sharing and standing room only. We took off our shoes and were offered scarves to wear. After the introduction and presentation they had an incredible buffet of food and a question and answer period. It made me proud to see so many people I know. 


Mirror Art, Eutawville, SC  
Aaaah....I do love my weekends. It's been a busy week with holiday luncheons for volunteers at three different hospitals. When I look at the rooms full of good people my heart swells. I am so fortunate to be surrounded with men, women, young and old who are dedicated to making a positive difference in people's lives.

Today's image is from a recent trip to the Lake Marion area. This gentleman enjoyed painting on mirrors and I caught his reflection in his own art work.