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Scotland (2) May 9 Isle of Iona

Saturday, May 31, 2014

After our first Bible study (on the book of Ruth) with teacher Liz Curtis Higgs, we boarded our coach and headed for the Ferry port to catch our Cal-Mac Ferry across to the Isle of Mull.


On Mull we road from Craignure to Fionnphort through contrasting scenery - from wooded and soft to bleak and bare. Then we boarded another pedestrian-only ferry to get to the Isle of Iona, which is Scotland's most famous early-christian site. Founded by St. Columba in 563, it became the Christian center of Europe.

Here are just a pics from the Iona Abbey and Nunnery ruins.





A little stairway in the back of the church led to a tiny room with 2 small chairs - not sure what it was for... but I thought it was neat.












On the ferry back to Mull, we saw Duart Castle. (I'd been in the ferry gift shop when we passed it on the way to Iona -- but the weather had cleared a lot and afternoon pictures were better anyway!)





  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KALIGIRL 6/2/2014 8:53AM

    Fabulous!

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SEWINGMAMACDS 5/31/2014 11:20PM

    Beautiful!

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DIDMIS 5/31/2014 8:29PM

    Interesting pictures.

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Scotland May 8

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Trying to give my Spark friends a teeny-tiny taste of the wonderful, amazing, awesome, remarkable trip I was blessed to take -- Scotland: Highlands, Islands, Castles & Gardens. Our host, Bible-study teacher/author Liz Curtis Higgs, our travel agent, Bev, and our American-born Scottish tour guide, Karen welcomed us at the Glasgow airport. We arrived about 8 AM and all 42 women & luggage were loaded onto a luxury motor coach, heading SW.

First stop: the banks of Loch Lomond



Our first castle: Inverary (still a residence, and used for the filming of Downton Abbey's final show of the 3rd season)




My grandsons would have loved the weaponry rooms!



In the castle garden:


Next stop: Kilmartin Glen, one of Scotland's richest prehistoric landscapes (and a current sheep pasture)




There were several other stops, all beautiful, but I'll try to keep these blogs short. We ended the day in Oban, our seaside home for the next 2 nights. Oh, how good it was to sleep after 32 hours awake (well, maybe I dosed for an hour on the overnight flight)!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEWINGMAMACDS 5/31/2014 11:21PM

    Love it! I am enjoying seeing your pictures and hearing about the trip.

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KALIGIRL 5/30/2014 9:33AM

    Fabulous!

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NOTSPEEDY 5/29/2014 10:33PM

    Thanks for sharing a little bit of your trip with us. The pictures are great.

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DIDMIS 5/29/2014 8:45PM

    So beautiful. I'm glad you could go.

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UMBILICAL 5/29/2014 7:38PM

  Beauty

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Photos of our Family

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Our kids and grandkids were in Phoenix for Christmas (hubby & I had to work). Here is a fun photo of the whole gang on a hike yesterday!


On the left is our younger son, Brad, and his family. On the right is older son, Todd, and his family. Todd & family live in Phoenix.

and here is one of just the kiddos:


We are blessed indeed!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIDMIS 4/15/2014 1:58AM

    So nice the pictures of your family. Thanks

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SEWINGMAMACDS 1/3/2014 12:20PM

    Wonderful family and a beautiful picture of you!

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PRESBESS 12/30/2013 4:41PM

    Beautiful family. I love your glamour shot too... looking good girlfriend!


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BEARSFANNDENVER 12/29/2013 9:37PM

    What a beautiful family! And, a lovely photo of you, too! Hope you had a blessed Christmas!

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NOTSPEEDY 12/29/2013 6:51PM

    To bad you had to work.

Love, love, love your new do.

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KALIGIRL 12/29/2013 3:22PM

    Wonderfully blessed!

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Relief of Foot Pain

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

I have suffered with foot pain for a long time. Had bunion & hammertoe surgery about 8 years ago, and it helped for a while. Have been wearing a well-known shoe orthotic ever since surgery as well. But my pain has been getting worse again over the years, to the point of me limping when I'd get up from my desk at work. Once I got moving, it would loosen up and I can do long walks, but I had considerable pain after walks and at night. I do NOT want to go the surgery route again, and feared if I went to a dr. that is what they would suggest.

Recently, I went to a new massage therapist, not thinking at all about my foot, but toward the end of the massage, I mentioned that IT was the most painful part of my body. She did a few things, but told me about another massage therapist who was doing amazing things on her foot, and suggested I call him. Thinking it was worth a try, I did, and was VERY encouraged with what I learned! According to him, most foot pain is caused by tight muscles, which don't allow the foot to work properly, and getting them stretched by to full length can make a world of difference. He and I went together to see yet a 3rd massage therapist (who teaches a particular stretching method).

A key principal with these therapists is that stretches should be held for 2 seconds each, released and repeated. This prevents the body's natural stretch reflex which tries to pull back to prevent injury if a stretch is held for long times. It's totally different way of stretching than I was ever taught, and it took me a while to convince myself to try it -- but as Michael said, "You've been holding stretches the old way (30-60 seconds or longer) for years. How is that working for you?" Since my pain had been increasing, I figured it was worth trying a new way of stretching -- and I'm very encouraged by the results!

All this happened just before our vacation. I was given 5 exercises to do (aiming for 15 reps 2x/day) and have been doing them -- with very encouraging results!! I have less pain, and in Maui I was even able to be barefoot much of the time (which hasn't happened in YEARS!!).

I will continue to see the massage therapist for a while (he can work more on the tight muscles than I can do on my own & I hope that will speed up the process), and continue with daily stretches. I am very optimistic that we can put an end to my pain based on these first few weeks!

I am attaching an article by the 3rd guy (trainer), because I found it very informative. One of the things he told me is that because tight muscles cause the foot problems, surgery alone doesn't help -- without changes to the muscles to relax and lengthen them, after surgery the tight muscles continue to pull on the newly "fixed" areas, and the pain returns. (I didn't explain that well, but hopefully you get the idea.) He told me that he actually gives a money back guarantee to patients with plantar fasciitis and carpal tunnel syndrome, because his technique is so effective. I found that amazing! www.mrtherapy.com/articles/article2.
html


Hope you find this helpful!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEARSFANNDENVER 11/28/2013 10:45AM

    Glad you're feeling less pain. I will check out his article - I am willing to try anything inexpensive to cure my foot pain.

Enjoy your vacation!

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KALIGIRL 11/27/2013 8:25AM

    Here's to loosening those muscles - might be good for other parts of our bodies too?

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PURPLELVR7 11/27/2013 6:51AM

    emoticon thanks for the article

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MRS.DOYLE 11/26/2013 3:19PM

    That makes sense. I suspected tight muscles were giving me foot pain and I have been massaging them myself with some success. There are so many bones in the feet and they all have to work together at the right time. it sounds like you are on the road to recovery.

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SEWINGMAMACDS 11/26/2013 10:43AM

    emoticon Thanks for sharing the article.

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SANDYCRANE 11/26/2013 8:06AM

    Thanks for the article, I think PF is a huge problem for a lot of people. This technique sure beats surgery.


emoticon

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Maui

Saturday, November 23, 2013

We had a great time in Maui, though there was a LOT more rain than we planned on. Rain kept us from as much hiking as we hoped to do, but we got long walks on the beaches and a couple shorter hikes. Here are just a few pics -- (sorry some are sideways ...)
Sunsets ...










Beaches ...










Flowers & Trees ...









(Eucalyptus Rainbow Tree)





And a waterfall

-- 400' high (the photo just doesn't do it justice!) This was our best hike - 2 miles through rain forest and then a bamboo forest to the falls!

And one of my hubby & I -- we'll celebrate our 43rd anniversary in a few weeks.


We splurged on food more than usual, and haven't had as much exercise since getting home a few days ago -- but we're enjoying living healthy and are back on plan! God is good and His Creation is Awesome!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SYNCHRODAD 1/8/2014 11:42PM

    Haven't been to Maui since 2005, far too long.. There is something magic about Maui. Greta pics!

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LCERVERA 12/30/2013 4:01PM

    Beautiful pics! So glad you had a nice time despite the rain. We were there in July for a week and also in Oahu for a week. You are right-God made on gorgeous earth!
Happy New Year.

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SEWINGMAMACDS 11/25/2013 1:02PM

    Beautiful pics. Glad you had a great time!

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KALIGIRL 11/25/2013 9:16AM

    Fabulous photos -so glad you had a wonderful time!

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PURPLELVR7 11/25/2013 6:42AM

    emoticon emoticon for sharing

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MRS.DOYLE 11/24/2013 1:24AM

    Great photos. I love the rainbow tree....and the sideways waterfall!!

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NOTSPEEDY 11/23/2013 11:32PM

    Great pictures. Glad you had a wonderful time.

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MJREIMERS 11/23/2013 10:49PM

    Congrats on 43 years of marriage. Maui is beautiful. My parents took me to Hawaii when I graduated from college. I loved it, but I would love to go back and be able to hike like you did! How fun! I'm glad you "let loose" a little and enjoyed the food. You only live once!!

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AVANELL 11/23/2013 9:53PM

    Beautiful! I love the ocean! I'm glad you had a great trip! Thanks for sharing with us!

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ROBBIEY 11/23/2013 8:21PM

  emoticon Thanks for including us on your journey.

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JODIRICHARDS 11/23/2013 8:20PM

    Looks like a lovely trip, makes me miss my other home.

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JTREMBATH 11/23/2013 8:13PM

    We Are from NZ but we have been to Maui twice as we love it, we never struck when we where there on both occasions.

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JACKIE542 11/23/2013 8:09PM

    So beautiful, thank you for sharing, always wanted to go there. emoticon

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