Thursday, August 15, 2019

A lovely stay

Have you ever been to Duluth, MN?
It's the home of the Aerial Lift Bridge. A recognizable landmark in and around Minnesota, USA.
Ships from around the world enter the Canal Park Harbor on a daily basis throughout the summer months. Visitors gather to watch their magnificent entrance under the bridge. It really is a sight to see.
This vast body of water is Lake Superior. It's as close to an ocean  we will get to in the Midwest.
Enger Tower.
The two above photos were taken from the top of this Duluth landmark. Best views of the city, hands down.
Isn't this a great spot for a wedding?
This bride and groom most certainly were blessed with the perfect weather day. The guests were treated to a birds eye view of the lake. Wow.
We weren't invited. Nope. Just got a peek because we happened to be in the area before it was closed off.

They couldn't have planned a better venue. Incredible.

Okay, this was amazing, but unfortunately, it wasn't the wedding we were in town for. We attended a lovely wedding on the golf course.

I spent so much time clicking away at sights such as this and Canal Park, when I finally did get to the wedding, my camera battery died. SIGH! No back up battery with me. Left it at our Bed and Breakfast. I know, smart thinking. NOT! Ugh!

My daughter was the Matron of Honor, so there will be plenty of photos to choose from. Just not any I took. Double SIGH!

Both my children attended University here in Duluth. One would think I would have at least heard of the bed and breakfast we stayed in. Not so.
I had never even known The Cotton Mansion existed until last weekend.
Shame on me.
It was brilliant. So very lovely.
Here's a tour.
Looks very English, don't you think?
Our very own guest entrance.
They ask that we remove our shoes upon entering.
I put some little booties on, and immediately felt right at home.
What a staircase.
The gathering room.
I met a really nice chap early Saturday morning while waiting for my tea to steep. He told me of he and his wife's travels abroad. I never would have guessed he was a detective for a police department. Such an interesting conversation. That's one of the things I love about Bed and Breakfasts. The people you meet. It's fascinating.
Chess, anyone?
The library. I spent more than a few hours in here.
Most bed and breakfasts have a library, whether large or small. It's my favorite place to be.

Weekend getaways are a marvelous time to recharge.
I hope you are finding time in these summer months to do some sightseeing and find a perfect place to stay that suits your interests and needs.

If you're ever in Duluth, check out the Cotton Mansion. You'll be glad you did.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Where to stay

This past weekend, we traveled a few hours away to attend a wedding.
I love the anticipation of what our accommodations will look like once we arrive. 
More on that Bed and Breakfast in Thursday's blog.

While in England, we booked B and B's far in advance of our anticipated holiday. We almost forgot about the enchanting places we decided on in the months leading up to our trip.

How lovely to drive through the countryside and say, "There it is, just over the field."
This was our last idyllic Inn on this holiday to England.  I enjoyed every moment at Dovecliff Hall. 

Why on earth would anyone want to stay in anything but an Inn?
I'm savoring the memories. Tune in next Monday for a tour.

Thursday, August 8, 2019


Meet Biddy.
Her name was Gertrude Annie Hobbs, but Oswald called her Biddy.

I just finished this fascinating read. It's a nonfiction book that has given me pause since reading The End. This woman dealt with extreme conditions, both weather and excruciating life experiences. You'll just have to read the book.

It's a story of perseverance in the midst of loss.
I guess what first drew me to Biddy is the fact she drank tea and wrote six letters every single day. Truly.
Kindred spirits, her and I.

Biddy grew up during the final two decades of Queen Victoria's reign.
Biddy would strive to do the very best in whatever she did.
Learning best when her hands were engaged, Biddy excelled in shorthand and typing.
Her goal was to be the first female secretary to the prime minister of England.

Life moved forward. She met Oswald Chambers. Like turned into love. Soon Oswald proposed in St Paul's Cathedral in London.

They married and opened a Bible Training College in Clapham Common, London.

War began. WWI.
Oswald was called to work with the YMCA in Egypt. He had to leave Biddy and their daughter Kathleen behind until it was safe for them to travel. Money was tight. (tight being an understated word.)

In the midst of all that, Oswald fell ill and unexpectedly died, leaving Biddy with a child to raise on her own. His death affected thousands and thousands of soldiers who loved him dearly.

Biddy persevered and felt called to make a devotional of all the teachings Oswald taught.  This is where her passion (shorthand) was used for the glory of God.

We know it today as this...
I believe the world we live in today would have embraced Oswald. He never judged. He and Biddy loved soldiers and anyone else they came in contact with. They lived by example. They loved like Jesus.
My Utmost for His Highest has never been out of print.
Do you have a copy?

Biddy lived by these quotes, which I have written in my planner and use on a daily basis...

When I don't know what to do, I do the next thing. Just like Biddy.   

Monday, August 5, 2019

Surprises in the mail

I'm knee deep in a writing project right now, but wanted to show you this beautiful book I just ordered from the Victoria magazine website. I highly recommend it. 
My heart warmed when I saw the front cover.
Arlington Row. The Cotswolds. I have been in this very spot in real life. It looks the same as you see here. 
I've skimmed through every page.  (Of course!) But can't wait to take some time and read every detail.
It depicts my happy place brilliantly.
You might want to grab one for your very own.