Good morning! Welcome to "Morning Musings".

Musings: to meditate, think, contemplate, deliberate, ponder, reflect, ruminate, reverie, daydream, introspection, dream, preoccupation, brood, cogitate.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Looking Back - 2013

I had a difficult time choosing my favorite post for each month.  Click on the title to see which ones won....

January:  Just an Ordinary Day

February:  Plumb Nilly

March:  Illustrators

April:  Childhood Memories

May:  A Foggy Morning

June:  More Moments Captured

July:  Hungarian Heritage

August: Signs of Things to Come

September:  Changing Seasons - Autumn

October:  My Log Cabin Dream

November:  Sunflowers

December:  Let it SNOW!


In 2014 may you be Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise...

Healthy in body, mind, and spirit
Wealthy in love and gratitude
Wise in truth and eternity!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Getting Ready for Christmas


Getting ready for Christmas in our family starts with going to a Christmas Tree farm and cutting down our tree.   We started this tradition with our first Christmas in 1969 when it was just the two of us and continued it with our three boys.  Now we are back to just the two of us and I finally get to choose which one we get.   We found the only farm, I think, which offers Hemlocks.  I fell in love with them because they look so delicate....

Poetry and Gabriel had to check it out first, of course....

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Sunflowers


I have a thing for sunflowers.  I love how they'll follow the sun throughout the day.  And on a chilly day like today, I find their sunny faces warm me.  It's rare that I buy myself flowers, but when I do, they're sunflowers like these I bought earlier this week....

....and like I did when we were on Martha's Vineyard last year.  They graced my morning devotional time on the terrace behind the Carriage House we rented for the week....

Sunday, October 6, 2013

My Log Cabin Dream


When I was still dreaming my "Cabin Dream" I set up a folder in my Bookmarks labeled "Cabin Dream".  It included photos like this....

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Changing Seasons - Autumn


It's beginning to look a lot like Autumn here....at least on the inside.  To celebrate the return of Autumn I'm posting a few photos of this year's Autumn decor along with links to last year's posts about Autumn.  It is too soon here in our part of the country for leaves to be changing but there's a nip in the air promising Autumn leaves will soon start to appear.  In the meantime, I've taken down the summer decor and have once again put up my red curtains along with Harry Richardson's Autumn print of his grandmother's house....

Friday, September 6, 2013

Martha's Vineyard

A year ago this week we were on Martha's Vineyard.  It was such a wonderful experience that I wanted to share it again with you.  Click on the highlighted titles to go to my original post....

Martha's Vineyard Carriage House

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Signs of Things to Come


One of the things I love about the change of seasons is that we're treated to signs of things to come.  For instance, my Mums all have tiny buds on them and one even has a few blossoms....

Monday, July 1, 2013

Hungarian Heritage

My heritage is half Hungarian.  My mother's father, Janos Rozgonyi, pictured on the right....
was born in Abauj-Torna, Telkibanya, Hungary, in 1887.  When he emigrated to the United States in 1906 he became known as John Rozgonyi, later Rozgony.  

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Lightning Safety Week: June 23-29, 2013

All's quiet now but two hours ago this is what it looked like from my front window....

....and from my front porch....

It turns out I should not have been out on my porch in the middle of a thunderstorm.  My cat knew better.  She was hiding behind the couch in the basement. Lightning safety is not something to be ignored.  You don't have to be outdoors to be harmed.  Did you know these precautions (from the NOAA site) should be taken:

  • Stay off corded phones, computers and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity.
  • Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths and faucets.
  • Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.
  • Do not lie on concrete floors, and do not lean against concrete walls.

And if you are caught outside 
with no safe shelter anywhere nearby you should:


  • Immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, mountain ridges or peaks
  • Never lie flat on the ground
  • Never shelter under an isolated tree
  • Never use a cliff or rocky overhang for shelter
  • Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes and other bodies of water
  • Stay away from objects that conduct electricity (barbed wire fences, power lines, windmills, etc.)

Since 1982 there have been an average of 53 deaths per year from lightning, which may not seem like very many--except if it's you.

There are other precautions, too, that should be taken to protect your house and belongings which you can find on the NOAA site.  Because we live on a 1,000-foot mountain the first owner of our house installed lightning rods.  We added a whole-house surge protector.  Be sure to check out the myths and facts link.

Lightning can be quite beautiful--if viewed from a safe distance.  You can watch the National Geographic's program on the science of lightning and the effects of a strike here.

Stay safe...

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Visitor in the Night


The night of the full moon I was graced with the sighting of a Cecropia Moth.  Since they only come out at night and because I am not usually outside at that time, I have never seen one before.  I had my camera with me when I stepped outside with the intent on capturing the full moon, but it had not risen above the trees.  Instead I was able to capture Poetry's intent interest in this elusive moth which has a lifespan of only two weeks.  Besides being the largest moth in North America it is quite beautiful....
Within moments, though, Gabriel, who was outside with me, saw it, too....
....and it fluttered upward over the roof into the night.  

I never did get a photo of the Supermoon.



Sunday, June 2, 2013

More Moments Captured


...from our weekend on the Chesapeake Bay....an egret fishing in the pond behind the house....




...the first sunlight reflecting off a loblolly pine....
 ...a bluebird perched on a branch....
...kayaking....a fishing boat in the background....
...the full moon over the Bay our second evening....
photo credit: Benjamin Schultz
...the moon setting the next morning over the pond...
...the sky just before sunrise....
...the last evening a cruise ship approaching the moon....


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Feeling Alive



"When I think of the moments I have felt most alive, they all have the quality of joining all-of-what-I-keep-inside with everything-outside-me in a way that makes me forget myself....[like] moments of being immersed in great music or great open spaces." --Mark Nepo

Mark Nepo's statement explains why I could not get enough of this scene this past weekend as I took Gabriel out for his morning walk just before sunrise....

We'd rented a house right on the Chesapeake Bay and the view from the 3rd floor balcony stretched even farther....

And if you stood farther back in the house in the living room you felt you were out to sea on a ship....

Nepo says Joy is the feeling of the Oneness we experience when we get in touch with that inner self...."it is the risk to be fully present that opens us to the Oneness that flows through all things."  

Expansive views have a way of making one fully present!  It is why I also love the views from mountain tops just as much....

Nepo notes that as infants we are one with everything and that in time we learn how to distinguish between ourselves and others, between the world we carry inside and the world we move through.  Then we spend a lifetime trying to get back in touch with that primary state of Oneness.  This makes me think of a quote by Charles Dickens and illustrated by Mary Engelbreit....

May you find Joy in the aliveness of your moments!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Beyond the Garden Gates - 2013


Every Spring Frederick, Maryland has a weekend-long tour of several private gardens in the downtown area.  This year's tour opened the garden gates to historic townhouses as well as individual homes.  It was a lovely day to be outside despite the overcast skies as we walked through these 11 gardens....
We entered the garden from the side street.  I was immediately struck by the perfection of the grass, but then realized it was artificial turf....
This Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar made a stunning statement up against the house....
 The archway to the side yard was formed by two Blue Ice Cedars....
 The next garden was also on a corner lot....
The view looking back out at the side street upon entering the rear garden....
A welcoming window box....
Take a closer look at the "window"....
Yes!  It's a mirror!  This was a charming display against the garage....
As we entered the enclosed backyard we were treated to a large brick patio with plantings all along the wall....
A pleasing arrangement by the back door....
There were several container garden displays....
We left through an entrance on the other side of the house enclosed by this gate....
The next house was in the middle of the block across from our city park....
We followed the walk along the right side of the house....
The chocolate mulch was heavenly!  So much was in bloom I wondered if they were new plantings.  We passed through two gates to reach the backyard....
....to find a rather large pool and circular spa where you see the first waterfall on the right and a pizza oven in the back right.  On the left was an apartment over the garage....
 The deck chairs and umbrellas were charming....
 ....and the huge Cryptomeria against the dark fence gave the area an oriental flare....
The table top is Pennsylvania Blue Stone resting on a wrought iron base, held on with "fingers" of iron wrapped around the edge....
We exited through the other side yard.  The flames in the porch lanterns caught my eye....
The houses were far enough apart that we had to drive to each.  This one was on a quiet street.  I was delightfully surprised to find a friend from the past on the porch checking visitors' tickets....
I love flowers and garden whimsy along steps....
We followed the porch to the back yard to discover this wonderful outdoor fireplace....
Across from it was a Koi pond.  It is 5 feet deep--too deep for Herons to stand in it to catch the fish...
I followed the walk to the back of the yard....
 A plein air artist was nearby capturing the garden on her canvas....
 Her view....
 As we left through the side gate I turned to photograph the gate....
The next garden was behind a townhouse....
The driveway to the left was our means to entering the backyard.  The Southern Magnolia is estimated to be 120 to 140 years old...
The yard had three distinct areas.  After the stone patio area for eating was this gravel path....
There was a fountain on the wall....
Behind the hedge was a shadier area with this small pond with waterfall....
The view from the back of the yard....
 This next townhouse was built in 1840....
 We entered through the side gate to the right....
We were told that this cistern was only uncovered just recently when the brick patio was constructed.  When the workers struck plywood while digging up the yard, they discovered a 15-foot, rock-lined hole in the ground.  There was a pipe extending into the area for water runoff from the roof.  The owners had the stone extended to bring it above ground and placed a safety grate at ground level with a light at the bottom. They think it is as old as the house....
This is the view from the back of the yard....
Another townhouse....
The owner had several plant arrangements as we walked along the side yard....
 There is water coming up out of the center of this rock....
We followed a walkway like this combination of stone and brick to this back patio area in front of a small room attached to the garage that the owner converted into a dining room....
This is the view looking back.  I was unable to get a good photo of the dining room because of all the people in the way....
We stopped by the hospitality for a cookie/lemonade break at City Hall and sat by the fountain....
 A Cardinal joined us nearby....
Then it was onto two townhouses side by side....
We entered the first garden for the house on the right and followed the brick walkway to the backyard....
I turned and snapped this photo of the path we took....
We exited the first garden through the door on the left and walked around to the second garden's back gate....
On either side of the terraced walkway were lush plantings....
This is taken mid-point looking back at the gate we entered from the back parking area....
I spoke briefly with the owner.  Her husband had only just recently put in the terraced walks and landings.  They had rented the house out for years but they'd planted the trees when they originally bought the house with this future garden in mind.  This was the way back out to the street....
 As we walked back to our car I admired this front stoop....
This side entrance to someone's backyard has inspired me to take advantage of all the ivy in my yard.  I'm thinking about putting an arch at the beginning of the walkway to my backyard like this one....
 This kitty seemed to be appealing for help to escape....
The last two houses were on the edge of downtown and were stand alone houses.  This one was rather new as compared to the others....
We walked around to the backyard and were rather surprised to see that it was entirely landscaped with hardscape and plants.... 
The path through the yard was a lush lawn.  Between the plantings were sitting areas like this....
 As you reach the back there is a pretty shed with a nice sitting area....
 ....with a fountain in the corner....
The last house is one of Frederick's stately Victorians....
 A closer look at the front door....
We entered the garden, though, from the side street.  The garage made a nice backdrop for the plantings....
The yard was very large and most of the plantings were along the perimeter....
 ....until you got to the other side of the house.  Notice the chandelier hanging from the tree....
 ....and the flower on the table....
 Each chair had a picture for each season.  Spring....
 Summer....
Autumn....
Winter....
 The steps to the side porch were near the table....
The Forget-Me-Nots were in full bloom....
Our last stop was the Arboretum where we saw this Black Squirrel with a partially red tail....