Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Today was Dad's 83rd birthday and we had a lovely day. We had a nice lunch with friends. Here is a photo of Dad (on left) and his best friend John (who turned 83 two days ago). Can you tell that John is a delightful British gentleman? We celebrated with wine, good food, cake, candles and song. After a great meal, we decided to go to a local site called Garvan Gardens here in Hot Springs. OMG, it was fabulous. It is almost 300 acres of gorgeous wooded gardens, waterfalls and walking paths. The horticultural students at the University of Arkansas plant hundreds of bulbs, shrubs, trees and plants and it is just breathtaking and beyond peaceful.
In a few weeks, I am sure it will be even more beautiful when all those bulbs open up. The recent snow they had here confused things a bit, some were blooming, some not. There are various garden areas - a children's garden, a Japanese garden, Daffodil Hill, Camellia Trail, etc....just amazing! What's more it houses one of the most beautiful chapels you can imagine.
The Anthony Chapel is made of wood, glass, and stone and is definitely a place where you feel God's presence. It is 57 feet tall and has 9860 square feet of glass providing a breathtaking view of the surrounding woodlands and Lake Hamilton. Can you imagine how beautiful the weddings and special events are that are held there? It has accompanying structures of the Millsap Bride's Hall, Evans Groom's Quarters, and the Evans Celebration Garden as well as the Anthony Family Carillon. The Carillon is a 59 foot tall tower comprised of 16 copper-clad columns. It chimes the time and then plays hymns reminiscent of a pipe organ. I am told that in the winter holiday months, they have millions of white twinkling lights everywhere and it is just a site to see! If you are ever in this area, I definitely recommend stopping in. What was really nice for us (since Mom and Dad can't really walk any distance) is that they have wheelchairs available and they have golf cart tours that take you through many of the paths on the acreage. It was a great day and was so good for all of us. Fun, fresh air and friends - perrrrrfect!
DH and I leave in the AM for home. After our busy day out in the fresh air, I am sure we will all sleep very well and dream of beautiful flowers and waterfalls :-) Oh how I wish my acreage at home could look like that! Wouldn't it be lovely if we all had a nice park in our backyards? :-)
I took this snapshot of a quilt I made Dad not long ago. It is made of flannels and does have batting for warmth. I have a close up of a block showing the pattern I used to quilt it. It is one of only a few ventures into what I refer to as "sane" quilting....I am really a CQ girl!