Friday, May 11, 2012

Lottie's Recovery!

Today I realized it's been three whole months since Lottie had back surgery! Her hair has grown back over the big rectangle that was shaven. She can run and jump and chase her ball again. She's as happy as ever and that makes us happy. She still has a swagger in her walk that comes off as clutsy, but it's still comical because she doesn't let it stop her or slow her down. Tom and I took her for a walk this evening around the little block and I only picked her up a couple of times. The extra exertion didn't seem to phase her because she still wanted to chase her ball after we got back in the house! This was only the second time she's gone around the block. Most of her exercise has just been hobbling around the yard sniffing whatever good stuff she can find. I'm so proud of Lottie! She's been a real trooper!

The outdoor picture was almost 3 weeks after surgery.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Congaree National Park

The boardwalk trail at Congaree National Park is really cool because you wouldn't be able to see the trees and muck that make up the park without getting all wet and muddy.
The park preserves a very unusual ecosystem.

 In some places the boardwalk is barely elevated above the ground,
but in others it is 10 to 20 feet above ground. The temp was cool because of
the density of the tall trees so Tom and I both wore our jackets.

We didn't see much wildlife, but we did see a wild turkey!
We tried to capture it on "film" but it was too fast for us.

These tiny little flowers were the most popular on this trail.

The boardwalk trail makes a loop. It's about 2 miles long.
I wore a lightweight jacket over a lightweight jacket! : )

Nice reflection. We expected the whole trail to look like this!

Cypress Tree "knees"!

Looking up the Cypress Tree!

These plants are of the same family as the famous palmettos.
South Carolina's namesake - The Palmetto State

Folly Beach

After an adventuresome day of touring historic and lovely Middleton Place; stopping for lunch including authentic Southern delicacies of fried green tomatoes in our burgers and fried pickles on the side; touring the one and only American Tea plantation; and viewing the ancient Angel Oak, we headed for the closest beach.

The beach we planned to find happened to have a very Hawaiian name - Kiawah Beach, and it only had one public access! Go figure, it was the home of some famous golf course where the next US Open Masters tournament was going to be held so they used a lot of discretion for their pote tial visitors or lost tourists. 

It was getting close to evening, so when we found gate for public access, it was locked and there was no parking close by. So we got out our GPS and searched for another beach in the area to no avail. Then we refered to the good old paper map to guide our way to Folly Beach. We found lots of public access points once we saw what the signs looked like. We parked the car, put on our jackets, put money in the slot, climbed the steps and crossed the ramp across the sand dune. And there we were, gazing on beautiful, dusky Folly Beach!

Looking to the east the clouds were reflecting the sunset.

A wide array of large and small beach houses lined the beach.
We especially liked this yellow one!

Palm trees silhouetted by post sunset at Folly Beach.

Angel Oak

Undeniably incredible!

Ancient and lovely


Bathed in evening sunlight!

Tea Garden

Middleton Place Barnyard, Etc.



carriage house

chickens greet the carriage

chikens and rooster!

rue in the herb garden

Indigo was used to make dye and sold

dinner bell


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Middleton Place

On the way to Middleton Place
through the canopy of moss laden oaks

Reflection Pool

first impression
so quaint
lovely little blossoms


from front corner of house

sculptured gardens

front of house from butterfly ponds

Middleton House

Middleton Oak

Middleton Oak's trunk

That's me in front of Middleton Oak!

statue in the woods

Famous wood nymph statue was
recovered after being buried
during the Civil War.

pond in the woods

lily in the wild

alligator across the pond!

glorious camelia!!!

graceful reflection - blue heron
pretty flora

another bird
rice field
mill house for rice processing
view of the spring house and chapel (2nd floor)
from path near the mill house

path leads to foot bridge over the pond
swimming gator near foot bridge


late blooming azaleas

another large oak near the front of Middleton House

a closer look at the spring house landscaping

inside the spring house - cool spring water
fresh milk, cream, butter

out the chapel window above the springhouse

a little jaunt uphill to get to the house 

Steps to the main house that was gutted
by the Union Army, then totally tumbled
by the earthquake of 1886.