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Historic Baker Barn, Madison County, NC

This is actually part of a re-post, with an update, from a topic I wrote about last year. Rural barns. Old barns are disappearing way too fast throughout America’s countryside and the backroads of North Carolina are no exception. This topic was also perfect for A Photo a Week Challenge about Nostalgia as well as Cee’s Fun Photo Challenge about old buildings, including barns. The Appalachian Barn Alliance is a not-for-profit group… Read More

As a country we are complicated. Diverse, argumentative, creative, strong-willed, fierce, generous, and I hope kinder to one another going forward. Let’s celebrate what we do have. With a clear sky and full moon, it was a thrill to watch the 45-minute firework show over the Lincoln Memorial and Washington monument that flank the grassy National Mall in our nation’s capitol, Washington DC. The light show was preceded by an amazing airshow…. Read More

Experience a virtual African safari in real time with &Beyond and WILDwatch.

I just got back from an annual trip with some of my great NC girlfriends.  This year we went to The Cloister at Sea Island, Georgia.  We were so lucky with the weather – we ventured farther north than usual and had braced ourselves for some chilly temps, but were pleasantly surprised with warm, breezy days. Even the rain gave us a break and held off until our last evening.  This is… Read More

The real magic of travel is when you discover something you knew absolutely nothing about . . . that’s what the experience visiting Lanzarote in the Spanish Canary Islands was like for me. I never heard of the architect César Manrique, who was from this island and returned to make it his life’s work to celebrate and memorialize its unique beauty. His installations are throughout the island, and we had the privilege… Read More

I’ve had the good fortune to make two trips to see Europe’s fabulous Christmas markets.  Once with my Mother on a river cruise and once with a girlfriend. Both trips were kaleidoscopes of super-sized, festive, cold, delicious Christmas overload. I know from previous experience that Germany is really where many of our beloved Christmas traditions began and the Alsace region of France, enhanced those traditions by taking tree decorating to the next… Read More

Our Bourbon Tour took us from Buffalo Trace to Woodford Reserve, Makers Mark, Heaven Hill, Jim Beam, and Willetts.

Majestic Ashford Castle, Cong, Ireland.

Get the royal treatment in Ireland at magnificent castle and country estate hotels.

Spoiler alert – we did not see a tiger.  As disappointing as that was, our visit to Ranthambhore National Park was a wonderful experience.   The weather was beautiful, clear, low humidity, blue skies, and cool. The scenery was so much more varied than I imagined.  We traveled through dense forest and open fields, around huge lakes, along sandstone cliffs, forded rivers and saw more types of vegetation than I will ever… Read More

Thanks to Hurricane Florence, New Bern has been in the news lately and not because it was the Colonial Capital of North Carolina. This charming historic town is not only the birthplace of yours truly, but also of Pepsi Cola. It’s a lovely place, founded in 1710, by Baron von Graffenried from Bern, Switzerland and jam-packed with history. Four historic districts include more than 160 sites listed on the National Register of… Read More

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