Celebrating “la bella vita” via Photo Friday

You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. – Psalm 16:11

“La bella vita” = “The beautiful life”

True story: Two days ago, catching a little local news in the late evening, our weather guy, Chris, makes the following pronouncement: “In all my career (and the guy has been in the business a good 30 years) this is by far the most dreary seven-day forecast I have ever given…”

That’s right, friends, Wake Forest has been and will be rain, sleet, more rain, highs in the low forties and lows in the mid-thirties. Wet and cold. Period. For the foreseeable future.

So I believe I owe everyone some “Photo-Friday” brightness.

The categories are: The grandchildren (of course!); Max Retriever; hiking into downtown; yummy food.

The Grandchildren:

I have to lead with this rare “permissible” image of Andrew and Alicia’s Mr. T. – now 18-months – in Dresden. Like North Carolina, Saxony has seen a lot of precipitation these past few weeks and the Elbe crested at over 400 cm. With 100 cm considered normal, that’s a lot of water. You can see our grandson looking past the barrier toward the river.

Mostly, though, Dresden has been piling up the snow in good Eastern Europe winter fashion. Mr. T.- always with shovel in hand – loves it!

In Miami, David and Beks continue to do well with the virtual school experience (Beks decided to add a “Mandarin Chinese” elective), and baby Geoffrey does his best to keep everyone off balance via adorableness and constant demands for attention.

If “best practices” for an infant means being in a stimulating environment, well cared for and with a family that loves you, then our youngest grandchild is already destined for greatness.

Max Retriever:

Max, meanwhile, is still pushing the envelope in terms of being amazing, huge, gentle, affectionate, and now 100% ours. We had been told that – coming home as a six-year-old – it may take six-months for him to completely let go of the “visitor” status, and I’d say that was a fairly accurate call.

One dead giveaway is the level of confidence Max had pulling off the “stealth” move into Rebekah’s reading chair in the kitchen. We were at the counter eating lunch for a good ten minutes before we noticed what he had done!

He is so photogenic I can’t help but play the role of proud owner/paparazzi. I especially like the “Giant Dog towers over house” look!

What to do in bad weather?

One of my favorite things to do is meet a friend downtown Wake Forest for coffee and a chat. Another favorite thing – especially in cool weather – is to walk.

Putting the two together is even better.

– downtown Wake Forest

So Wednesday, needing to clear my head and come up with some ideas for a writing project, I hiked into Wake Forest to meet my friend Bernie at my favorite coffee emporium. Twenty-five minutes walking and thinking, an hour of great conversation, twenty-five minutes back home.

Life should be so simple every day.

Classic Food Pics:

I have heard a lot of talk and read a lot of articles covering “Covid Pounds.” Apparently people confined to home are cooking more and exercising less.

But let’s not blame good food for unwanted weight gain!

Rebekah and I are proving – week after week – that it is possible to raise our game when it comes to good eating, and simultaneously maintain a healthy weight.

So here is a classic roast (slow and wonderful) with rice, carrots, green beans, mushrooms, and rich gravy.

Then baked Tilapia, lightly breaded, served alongside linguini in a light clam sauce, mixed veggies and a small roll.

“Photo-Friday” one more way I count my blessings and remind myself of what is really important and how good life is – DEREK

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