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Backroads, Offroads, Sideroads, or Country roads, are known by many names.
If you appreciate the many unique and totally wonderful things, landscapes, and people to be encountered-
it takes day trips and long journeys to another level!

Bea
Time to travel!

From Sage Hill to Guntersville Lake (Guntersville, Al.,( near Gadsen) for those unfamiliar with the area, is 2 hours by backroads.
About an hour and a half on the straight route.

Sand Mountain
Cool and pretty!

The climb is short but sweet!  SAND MOUNTAIN is a sandstone plateau in northeastern Alabama and (to a far lesser extent) northwestern Georgia and southeastern Tennessee where the plateau is known as Raccoon Mountain and Elder Mountain. It is part of the southern tip of the Appalachian mountain chain and it is the largest plateau in the chain. Geologically a continuation of Walden Ridge, Sand Mountain is part of the Cumberland Plateau, separated from the main portion of the plateau by the Tennessee River and Sequatchie Valley. The average elevation on Sand Mountain is around 1,500 feet (460 m) above sea level, compared to about 650 feet (200 m) in the surrounding area. This elevation leads to its having the coolest climate in the state of Alabama. The largest city on Sand Mountain is Albertville, in Marshall County.

My trip started early, was beautiful, green, and had little traffic to contend with…works for me!

Guntersville Lake and the lake area is exquisite but rather simple in regards to (fluff and pomp)
It has all the elements of ease, beauty, fresh and gourmet fringes.

Top Of The River from afar.
Big, big lake!

Top Of The River upclose.

(Top Of The River) restaurant is A+ all the way, two levels of wide-open spacious dining, overlooking the lake front.
Super neat, clean, unadorned, great service and delicious food…no greasy residue anywhere.

Fried Catfish, (clean and crispy) Hushpuppies (they rival New Orleans finest) my kind of slaw and great coffee!
All for me! OK!      This little plate soon had a small serving of coleslaw and black-iron skillet cornbread!

There are lake homes in the $$$$$$$$$-millions, but my favorites are the smaller, Craftsman style -built with a Row House feel…still pricey but doable, if we sold the farm and pawned the kids! Mercy!!
From Top of The River to lakes edge.

I did some fun shopping, ate fruit pops and remembered my dear friend Shirley Mitchelle, her home is near-by.
(wherever you are, I love and miss you!)

Awesome little tow...actually, not so little. Remember -Jack Watson ? Chapel+

Time to head home….hope you enjoy my day as much as I did!

Time to head home!

Nothing feels quite like being on the open road, with a full day ahead and no agenda…except lunch at a favorite spot and all the splurge shopping one can handle!


Let me just say…in Nashville, Tn., I saw no signs of a slowdown, new construction beyond belief.
I do have a question. What is driving the all-inclusive look of industrial elements in homes, and commercial buildings?
Dull, generic browns, and grays? The only thing missing is wire fencing and a guard at the gate. (one huge, old, manufacturing plant turned into condos, bars on the windows?
It’s ugly and disturbing.

But…I digress!

I know and love the special, beautiful, and many historical spots. Germantown is a fav!)
If one knows Nashville well, one must know about Monells, they have 3 locations, my favorite is the original in Germantown since 1905.
So much awesome history in this area/neighborhood.

After a Family Style lunch with 9 people gathered around a large table, ladened with meats, breads, salads, dessert, tea, and lemonade….we chose to stroll a lot!

In and out of many individual shops…one of my favorites is the Galena Garlic Company which has its home base/farm in Galen, IL.
My first introduction to the company was the store in Madison, IN. (a fabulous little river town.)

www.galenagarlic.com

www.monellstn.com

When you get the chance, do go! (for a day or a week, you’ll never see it all!)

style
American Companies

America, The USA, Land Of The Free And Home of, And Because Of, The Brave…that includes Me and You!

In the coming weeks leading into spring, I will be researching and sharing American Made products, especially clothing for families/working women, and athleisure wear.

There is more out there than we might think.

We can dress well, eat well, design and furnish our homes well by and through supporting American Companies.

Whatever it takes….It’s time!

You will see posts scattered around my FB pages and other locations of my choice. Always follow the link to the Sage Hill Gardens website for a full list of American Companies as I research and share them.

https://www.allamericanclothing.com
https://www.mypillow.com
https://www.dayspringdairy.com/
Dream Collection
https://www.vermontcountrystore.com/Do you know, many of our very best Home Furnishing companies are Made In America Companies.!!

Hudson is one of my favorite places, check them out for a Data Base of other American Made companies.

A few to pique your interest!

https://www.hudsonsfurniture.com/made-in-usa
a)In 1962, BEST Home Furnishings was born in Ferdinand, Indiana.  Today, BEST has become the world’s largest chair manufacturer.BEST quality products are American-made in southern Indiana using domestic kiln-dried hardwood frames, the finest high-density foams, and our recliners use Leggett and Platt mechanisms, also made in the USA.

b) Founded in 1996 in Pontotoc, Mississippi, SOUTHERN MOTION™ started off with a rocking beginning as they found their place in the furniture industry. As a household name for furniture, Southern Motion has thrived throughout the years, introducing new products to customers looking for style and comfort combined.

c) https://www.hudsonsfurniture.com/brands/KLAUSSNER

d) VAUGHAN-BASSETT Furniture is a specialist in affordable, well-crafted furniture for the bedroom, and the largest producer of wood bedroom furniture in the U.S. While furniture plants across the country have permanently shuttered their doors due to overseas competition in recent years, Vaughan-Bassett chose to ensure that, at nearly 100 years old, the company would remain the largest employer in its hometown of Galax, Virginia by outfitting its plants with state-of-the-art equipment and updating all of its procedures.Nearly 700 talented and hard-working craftspeople head to work at Vaughan-Bassett each day, proud in the knowledge that they are creating quality furnishings their fellow consumers can trust to live and sleep with every day. Thanks to the growing number of people who recognize how important domestic manufacturing is to the health of America’s economy and insist on buying American-made goods, the company has recently opened a second plant to satisfy the increased demand for its products. Vaughan-Bassett expects to create another 115 jobs over the next three years.

e) https://www.hudsonsfurniture.com/brands/daniels-amish ( hand-crafted in the USA)

f) It was 1925 and Americans were getting better rest than ever before thanks to the then newly-invented Pocketed Coil®. For the first time, a signature, mass-produced bed, offered individual support and motion separation. This achievement marked the official launch and introduction to the world of the BEAUTYREST line.

Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, H.G. Wells, and George Bernard Shaw, all movers, and shakers in their own regard, had one thing in common: they, like many Americans, couldn’t risk a poor night’s sleep for the progress of tomorrow. Each demanded better sleep and found the answer with Beautyrest®.

Then 1958, Simmons forever changed the bedroom again by being the first manufacturer to create Queen and King mattress sizes. The ability to sleep like a royal was now available to everyone.

Today, we’re bringing our luxurious mattress shopping experience direct to your doorstep.

sisters    tree

The Cross

That Brandon…he’s everywhere, keeping the rhythm alive!

I recently made a trip south to have some holiday time with family members who will not be coming this way during the Christmas celebrations.

Cruising down 31 South I spent some time behind a big ole 18 wheeler truck sporting a bright  “Go Brandon!” banner across the back.
Made my heart sing!  We Wish You A Merry Christmas, God Bless America, and a host of other Freedom songs.

I saw the USA Flag flying in all the right places!

I saw Christmas decorations bright and shining and inviting…..

I felt the Spirit of Christmas in Foley, Alabama.

Arrived at my hotel and was greeted by friendly, maskless host, everything was open, and again…welcoming.

Arrived at my niece’s home to find gorgeous trees welcoming us, the back porch, the bedrooms, the family room…pretty trees.
The beachy tree got my attention…impressive…sea shells, starfish, cool blue ornaments that almost swayed if you watched closely! (the only thing missing was Spongecake!)
Never fret, there was cake…
The weather…it was beachy also!  The high 70s…felt fabulous!
Someone said they saw Santa surfing??

We lived on the beachside of the Mississippi Gulf Coast for 40 years, so I am no stranger to sand, sun, salt water, and good fishing…..(some of us are still there)

This visit was about 80 miles from our Mississippi home ground.
It’s good to belong to more than one “home.”

Always good to be welcomed by family…we have the best!

A very good review by another visitor.
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Yes, we all have plans to return, again and again.

Whether you have sunshine or drifts of snow, Christmas is Christmas, the largest birthday celebration on earthy. Rejoice!

https://www.travelawaits.com/2717694/foley-alabama-hallmark-christmas-movie-town/?fbclid=IwAR0gkKpxsXYzzmp7sPmcLVlYIjr6PyTuwARq4agDUUtCGGcPWJtSmtSzel4

bread reccipe
Note the location of the person who shared the recipe for this cookbook.
Lebanon, Tn.
The book was a gift from my son and DIL in 1997…I was nowhere near Tn!
I think that is some kind of irony that 24 years later I chose a recipe from a lady in a town not too far from Sage Hill.
That makes me smile and that’s a wrap!

BTW…you can make the recipe a much healthier version by opting for organics, I used Agave in place of white sugar.

Yummy!

bread

When the candles are lit and the soup bowls are filled,
Delicious aromas waft throughout the house,
We will sit down to a Thanksgiving meal in which a few subtle switches will turn familiar offerings into a delicious feast of new and charming classics.

A turkey basted with a cider/butter mix will sit beautifully browned just begging to be sliced!
Pecan pie with daring and heady molasses instead of sugar…no one will ever guess, but it’s not a secret!

Potatoes and Yams roasted with Parsnips bring a new dazzle to the humble root vegetables.

There will be Gumbo…recipe unaltered from many years of perfection! That’s OK, some things cannot be improved upon!
Pumpkin soup made and served in and from the said host. ( the pumpkin)

A few delights among others, food for thought over the next few days.

For now…today, Sunday-November 21, an inside day because of cold rain and no desire to venture out…..the kitchen became my target!
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Something for breakfast, brunch, or after-dinner treat.

Tis the Season…to be cautious of what we mourn…

cake    soup

face  table

November, November, a delightful array of seasonal splendor!

Marigolds, mums, and pumpkins on parade-
Leading the way to Thanksgiving Day!

Our destination…Home!
Where all the familiar faces gather to sleep deep, linger long, eat heartily, and hug with intention.

Tradition is BIG in my world, honoring yesterday, embracing the now, and praying for the future to hold the line….one more time!

Beautiful food makes us slow down and take notice.
A table with flashes of copper, glints of silver, and grandmother’s gifts…whatever they are-
Wear them, serve them, share them.

November, November, a delightful array of seasonal splendor.

home
This girl has had a long day and home is my comfort zone!

However…
I have come to love appointments, once I’m out it’s easy to extend must do’s into pleasure do’s!

Today after the appointment activity I  decided to wander side roads, off streets, and basically the unknown territory of Columbia, Tn.

Always amazes me how much I don’t know and haven’t seen about the local areas around Sage Hill.

I saw much that I will return to for more clarification…but today two places got and held my attention.

One…the old train depot…a grand lady for sure. She has obviously been cared for and utilized over the years.

I will return for an inside tour and update.

The benches out front were exquisite!
depot bench
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The second surprise was a bit more in the now….

The building is the old Columbia Art building, and I have to research that.

The time was about 4:30 and I feared the doors would be locked…but no, I found myself inside with what appeared to be two new businesses in the making.

One is a coffee shop and the other I learned from Ethan is a Sandwich shop/with a twist perhaps!!  More on that later also.

I found myself in a beer brewery right in the hubbub of Columbia.

Those who know me, know I’m not a drinker…however I do enjoy good beer from time to time. ( today was my first in about 5 years and 5 years prior to that one.

Hmmm, another 5 years I may too old to drink!  More on that later!

Interesting, authentic, and comfortable…and the beer I sampled was cold, but not too cold,  and tasty!

You can learn more about the company here.
http://www.badideabrewing.com/

You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites.

If you are local, check it out, you’ll be glad you did.

Some nice shots…
beer beer

white jeans  dark washed jeans  black jeans  stretch jeans   work jeans

My idea of stylish is …harness the personality and whatever you choose to wear works!  Just kidding…sort of!

The body shape is the top priority, know where your flaws are and seek to hide!  Seriously….

A good fit, the right shades from any color, and we each have our own set of colors.
I’m lucky, I have two…winter and spring or silver and gold…however, from these base colors I need the deep, bold/spicy shades.
Even in spring colors, pastels don’t work for me.

Always, keep in mind, Trendy is not Style. (trendy is designed for quick sales)   (style is designed to be timeless in looks and fabric)

There are good teachers/programs to help us define our best colors, shapes, and patterns.
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Within these guidelines, you can shop less, save tons of money, have a sustainable wardrobe(lasting items), and have the assurance of knowing, everything in your closet is a favorite!
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I once wore jeans almost on a daily basis, got away from that look, and guess what? They are back!!!!
Not daily wear as in the past, but certainly have a space in my closet for quick, easy dressing.

Some examples…I have been known to wear jeans to a black-tie affair (with a nice dinner jacket and white shirt, diamonds here and there, and those high yummy heels…why not? (my reason, I forgot my little black dress.) Stuff happens…

Style with belts

STYLE….new addition to The Stylish Gardener Blog…after all!  

Belts, hmmm….I’ve perfected my fall/winter wardrobe, and belts are nowhere to be found!

These are a few looks I managed in the past. With a very high waistline and a lot of driving time this year…fashionable, but uncomplicated and comfortable is my plan.
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Ahhh, but enough about belts….

For excellent vintage jewelry/condition and pricing, visit my Vintage site and shop for those very special ones we love to pamper.
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Fall is designed for “food!” We have to eat, we enjoy eating, so let’s make it count.
Start the season with one firm thought…Only the best/healthiest and moderation at all times.
This simple commitment will help drop pounds if that is a goal, clean-up, and clean-out the whole system, ease the frustration of “dieting” and bring a newfound joy to our food category.
**For the Membership options of The Healthy-After program, please PM me.
(website make-over has forced some changes to this program’s landing page/we are working on it.)

Check out the Recipe category along with the articles pertaining to cooking tips.
Style, Food, Travel
I’m always a click away, your questions or need for more info is
encouraged and appreciated.

Blessings~stay aware, stay healthy, stay stylish…cotton or silk…make it yours alone.

 

courthouseflagmarkermarkerpark
me

Livingston, Tennessee- plan a trip and I’ll meet you there!  Once is not enough!

Two hours from Sage Hill (base of the Cumberland Plateau)  Livingston is in the Upper Cumberland, gorgeous country, rich history, thriving town and friendly folks!

The original Overton County Courthouse was burned by guerrillas during the Civil War to cover up evidence of pro-Confederate acts, and was rebuilt ca.1868

History Bite…Dec.22,1961-An American soldier was killed in an ambush at a military airfield in Southeast Asia (Vietnam) for many years he was considered to be the first American to die in that war. That is questionable now and for another time.
However, Davis is a hero and holds a special place on the Courthouse grounds and the hearts of Overton County folks.

Sweet sorgum and molasses are among our favorite health foods…the best can be found in Muddy Pond, a delightful Mennonite community. Awesome!

History Bite…This was a surprise to me. Overton County is one of Tennessee’s top counties for oil and natural gas production.

If you are a hiker…Standing Stone State Park is a few steps away, and if you are a marble player, they have the 38th annual National Rolley Hole Marbles Championship coming up this next weekend I think.

I was impressed with all the fun things to do and the history of course is my first love.

So much to see and learn…so little time! But, we try!