Category Archives: Grandkids Visit

Grandkids Visit (2011)

Grandkids Visit (2011)


The time I most look forward to finally arrived, Cat and Sam came from Denver for a visit, this year bringing my Daughter, Kristy along as well.






They enjoyed a closeup look at the Honey Bees out in the Bee Yard. Mike showed them how we inspect each frame periodically to make sure that there is a working queen bee laying eggs, that the bees are finding enough nectar and pollen to bring in and store, and that there is no visible disease present.

They did indeed locate the queen on this frame and could see that she had been very busy laying eggs. And since it is the time of the year when the Sourwood Trees bloom in these mountains, the bees not only had enough honey stored, but they a lot of extra honey that we will harvest soon. The Sourwood is our premium honey and is desired for its smooth delicious taste.

Cat found to her delight that the bees are really quite gentle and most of the time not apt to want to sting.

Mike gave her a drone first to hold. The drones are the males and do not have a stinger. He crawled around on her hand, probably enjoying all the wonderful scents there.

In no time at all both Cat and Sam were fearlessly interacting with the bees and finding out what every beekeeper knows… that it is a joy to be among the honey bees and to tend their hives.



We had the 2nd Annual Cabin Porch Pickin’. The neighbors came for Barbeque and as is customary in the mountains, brought along their music. Cat had her mandolin and Sam had a borrowed guitar and they were ready to join in the jam. It ranged from rousing Blue Grass tunes, to lovely gospel songs where everyone joined in singing. Sam surprised us all by beginning the “Dueling Banjos” which the other guys quickly joined in with great gusto. Grammy (that’s me) even joined in one tune with my dulcimer and the band accommodated by playing at my slower pace, since I am still quit the beginner.

Below are samples of the jam for you to listen to………










Memories are the next best thing to the actual doing, and sitting on the cabin porch this evening playing my Dulcimer, the memories, along with our resident cicadas and frogs making their night noises, are keeping Mike and me company.

The Grandkids come for a visit (2010)

The Grandkids come for a visit (2010)

Remember when your Mom would, on a special occasion like a birthday, announce tomorrow we are going to have Mickey Mouse pancakes for breakfast, spend the morning at the pool, go for ice cream, and then go see that new Walt Disney movie. And Dad would add, and you can stay up late with me to watch the Twilight Zone on TV….. as if after all that fun  I would be able to stay awake after 9 PM!

The anticipation of such a day would almost be more pleasurable delight than one could stand. And afterwards the blissful remembrance of the day, for months to come, would be almost as lovely.

The last two weeks of June were like that. The anticipation built as I yearned to see Cat and Sam. It had been far too long since their last visit, and their home in Denver was so far away. But finally the day arrived and the wait was over. First a few activities in town: Sam went fly fishing with Mike; while Cat and I went to the fabulous Fox theater to see a touring company do Phantom of the Opera. Then we were off to the cabin.

First up was a rafting trip down the Ocoee River in white water that would scare the fleas off a dog. Our son, Matt, joined us for the adventure and we hired his friend Mark, of Ocoee Adventure Center to guide. Cat and Sam proved the stuff they are made of. When the raft lifted as it rode a crest it should have plunged back down, instead the bow rose higher and higher till the raft flipped back over on itself spilling everyone out into the turbulent icy water. It was everyman for himself at that point, because no one could do anything other than follow survival procedure and keep their feet pointing down steam and not swallow too much water, as the river rushed all onward. The guide recovered the raft and picked began picking up the swimmers, Sam was all the way through the next big rapid, somehow managing to keep his head mostly above water and not smash into any rocks. The kids had both remembered the safety talk and did just what they were supposed to do.


Next, we invited friends and neighbors over for Barbeque and a Porch Pickin’ . Both Cat and Sam are accomplished musicians so they fit right in and found that Appalachian Blue Grass music was not too different from their Rocky Mountain style. In no time at all they were jamming with the other players.

We are going to make the Porch Pickin’ an ANNUAL EVENT at the cabin.

Having never seen lightening bugs (you might call them fireflies), it was a new experience catching a jar-full to light their sleeping loft.





When the “old folks” retired too early they stayed up playing cards.


Feeling that the backwoods seclusion of the cabin might eventually become a bit too “quiet” for the kids, we finished off the week with a drive up to the Great Smokie Mountains National Park and a trip to the Atlanta Aquarium.