T-shirt Tours: “spaced out” on Wallops Island

Today’s t-shirt tour takes us to Wallops Island, located just across from Chincoteague Island on the Eastern Shore of Virginia (the state.) A few years ago my brother and I spent a fabulous week in Chincoteague viewing wildlife and watching a NASA rocket launch (posted about previously here and here.)

As huge NASA groupies, we had a blast!

“NASA: IT’S NOT ROCKET SCIENCE. Oh wait, yes it is!” Always fun wearing this fav t-shirt acquired at NASA’s Wallops Island Flight Facility.


NASA Orbital Rocket launch from Wallops Island

A great white egret (not so impressed with rocket noise!)

Sunset over Wallops Island (view from Chincoteague)

QUOTE: “We cannot discover new oceans unless we have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” Andre Gide

grace, peace & new horizons

Virginia : )

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T-shirt Tours: Trust issues @ Yellowstone Park

Virginia’s t-shirt tours continue in Yellowstone Park. Years ago my younger brother and I spent a memorable 4th of July week with my mentor and friend Bill Warnock at his beautiful cabin in West Yellowstone, Montana. (How I miss Bill as posted here previously.) We had a grand time traipsing around Yellowstone Park with Bill, but we were very careful around the bears!!

“YELLOWSTONE. DO NOT FEED THE BEARS. I am not a bear. Trust me.” Favorite t-shirt from Yellowstone Park that’s super soft from years of wash and wear.


Summer flowers blooming @ Iron Spring Creek in Yellowstone Park

Mesmerized by Narrow Gorge Mini Falls in Yellowstone Park

Trust or no, trying not to wake up Mr. Bear in Yellowstone Park

QUOTE: “We travel not to escape life but for life not to escape us.” Anonymous

grace, peace & trust issues (with bears!)

Virginia : )

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T-shirt Tours: Properly Motivated (in Tennessee)

Today Virginia’s t-shirt tours take us (a bit circuitously) to Tennessee. A few years ago my brother Dwight and I made a mammoth driving trip to celebrate one of his milestone birthdays. Our sis Cindy joined us for a few days in Charleston, South Carolina, before we zoomed to Franklin, TN, to pick up the Natchez Trace all the way to French Camp, Mississippi, where our niece Joybells and her family live. After traipsing about Mississippi we zoomed on to Chattanooga, Tennessee – a truly fun city!

Since Dwight is majorly into fish we visited not just one, but TWO Aquariums that trip…

“Exercise. Some motivation required.” T-shirt acquired @ the impressive Tennessee Aquarium, housed in two buildings dedicated to oceanic aquatic creatures and fresh water habitats.


A few fun fishies @ The South Carolina Aquarium in Charleston

Jellyfish hanging out @ the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga

Properly motivated (SHARK!!) @ the Tennessee Aquarium

QUOTE:   “I wish travel therapy was covered by my health insurance.” Anonymous

grace, peace & proper motivation

Virginia : )

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T-shirt Tours: The Grand Canyon (& environs!)

Continuing with Virginia’s t-shirt tours, years ago my younger brother and I made a truly grand trip to Arizona and environs. After traipsing around the Grand Canyon for several days we ventured on to see Monument Valley and various sites in Navajo Nation parks (that straddle several states) before zooming back to AZ to experience Sedona’s canyons and funky town.

“Not all who wander are lost.” (J.R.R. Tolkien) Favorite t-shirt acquired @ the Grand Canyon that is still treasured (even if it’s a bit tattered!)


Glorious after-sunset sunset @ the Grand Canyon (back story shared here previously)

Almost sunset view @ Navajo Nation’s Monument Valley Tribal Park

Hanging out with friendly cactus in Sedona, AZ

QUOTE:  “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” J.R.R. Tolkien

grace, peace & grand wanderings

Virginia : )

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Snapshots & Whatnot: T-Shirt Tours!!

Some folks are experiencing summer vacation blues with no place to go (or not venturing very far) due to coronavirus constraints. Visiting interesting places over the years, Virginia collected bunches of t-shirt souvenirs. Many worn-to-tatters shirts have endured forced retirement into the rag bin, but several drawers of serviceable t-shirts remain reminders of good times.

For the next week (or so) Virginia thought t-shirt tours from her drawers might be fun: a t-shirt acquired from somewhere + a few favorite pics from that somewhere + a quote  (must squeeze inspiration in somewhere!)

Today we’ll start with memorable trip to Canada…

Quebec: Canadian Fast Food!

Years ago my younger brother and I drove from Virginia (the state) to visit friends in Montreal, then we zoomed up to Quebec City for a few days before making our way to Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, to see plays at the Bernard Shaw Festival and experience the Niagara Falls. An amazing trip!

Sunrise @ Quebec City, Canada

Quebec City streets (the inspiring sort)

Niagara Falls (from the Canadian side)

QUOTE: “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” Helen Keller

grace, peace & daring adventures

Virginia : )

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(a little) Flowery Cheer

Sometimes a little flowery cheer can brighten up our day…

“Fear less; hope more. Talk less; say more. Hate less; love more. And never underestimate the power of forgiveness.” Abigail Van Buren

grace, peace & flowery cheer

Virginia : )

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Trees! Trees! Trees! Trees!

On this hot and steamy day in Virginia (the state), Virginia (the person) is contemplating the calm beauty of trees – and their cool shade! As a tree groupie of the highest order, Virginia has been inspired by the grandeur of trees during travels to sundry places. So, today here are pics of inspiring trees and quotes to contemplate…

Angel Oak (Johns Island, South Carolina)

“Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf.” Albert Schweitzer

Bow River Parkway, Banff National Park (Canada)

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” Chinese Proverb

Windsor Castle Park (Smithfield, Virginia)

“The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way… But to the eyes of the person of imagination, nature is imagination itself.” William Blake

Maymont Park (Richmond, Virginia)

“I said to the almond tree, ‘Friend, speak to me of God,’ and the almond tree blossomed.” Nikos Kazantzakis

Merchants Square (Williamsburg, Virginia)

“Trees are poems the earth writes upon the sky.” Kahil Gibran

Butchart Gardens, Vancouver Island (Canada)

“The tree that is beside running water is fresher and gives more fruit.” Saint Teresa of Avila

Hocking Hills State Park, Ohio

 “A tree with strong roots laughs at storms.” Malay proverb

Chincoteague National Wildlife Reserve, Virginia

 “Be like a tree. Stay grounded, keep growing, and know when to let go.” Anonymous

Groot Constantia Winery, Cape Town (South Africa)

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit…” Jesus (John 15:5)

Banff National Park, Canada

“You shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” (Isaiah 55:12)

grace, peace & Inspirational TREES!!

Virginia : )

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Snapshots & Whatnot: Directionless in Assisi

Years ago while traipsing around Assisi I came across a little doggie looking a wee bit lost. With his nose to the ground he didn’t seem to notice the signposts that might have helped him along his way…

Directionless in Assisi, Italy

Maybe there’s a lesson for us from this wee doggie today? Sometimes we are too focused on the down stuff. If we look up we might catch life’s signposts and opportunities we may miss if we keep our noses to the ground.

Today let’s be about looking up and moving forward with a little courageous hope toward whatever new things we’re meant to be trying and doing.

Looking up in Assisi, Italy

“Keep trying to do what is necessary, then what’s possible, and suddenly you’re doing the impossible.”  Saint Francis of Assisi

grace, peace & courageous up-looks

     Virginia : )

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#Kindness Grooves

Virginia is sharing another archived post (circa 14 July 2016) that’s still relevant today…

What does it mean to be kind?

Kin” and “kindred” connote family. Kindred spirits are of like minds and hearts.

To be kind means to treat others like my kin, like family, with respect, care and compassion. To be and do something nice for them.

With all the divisive derogatory rhetoric going around our world today, we could use more acts of kindness.

A smile. A warm greeting. (Where I’m from, that’s a given.) A gesture of welcome.

A gift of flowers to brighten someone’s day…

A look in the eye that says, ‘Hey you, we may look different, but I value you – you are precious in God’s sight and precious to me.’

Lots of folks are scared these days: scared of each other, scared to reach out.

But we are all kin – whatever our hue – human kindred.

But sometimes human doings leave us undone. Looking around it might seem too big for one person to do anything that matters.

Big acts begin with small acts done all the time.

Small acts of kindness.

There are so many ways we can make small acts of kindness that benefit others. Not rushing to close elevator doors when others are coming but here’s an idea, holding them open?

Writing reviews can boost locally owned eateries

Returning from a recent trip I wrote many Trip Advisor reviews to help family owned eateries, businesses and hotels. It took a bit of time, but it’s an opportunity to spread a little kindness and recognize excellence. Local restaurants appreciate a good word, too. Taking 5 minutes to write a short review can make a difference.

After taking care of my mama, it has become a reflex to offer assistance when I see an elderly lady struggling with anything. It’s an honor to help because it’s like helping Mama.

I still have a ways to go (running late for appointments I’m the one who tends to zap the elevator doors closed.) But there are always opportunities if we’re on the lookout for them.

Try one on for size today: a small act of kindness (or big one, hey!)

grace, peace & kindness grooves

Virginia : )

“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”  Mark Twain

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Snapshots & Whatnot: Mountains, Seas & Me

As folks venture out to favorite beach and mountain retreats for a respite from COVID-19 and worries of all sorts, here’s a quote from one of Virginia’s previous posts about travel (circa 12 July 2012) and snapshots to go with…

“People travel to wonder at the height of the mountains, at the huge waves of the seas, at the long course of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars……and yet they pass by themselves without wondering.” St. Augustine (from his Confessions)

Wondering at the height of giraffes & mountains in Tanzania

Wondering at stormy waves in Newfoundland, Canada

Wondering at the heights & depths of the Grand Canyon

Wondering at the vast compass of the ocean in Dar es Salaam, TZ

Wondering at sunset over Lake Victoria (view from Kagera, Tanzania)

We must not pass by ourselves without seeing the wonder inside…

grace, peace & meaningful wonderings

Virginia : )

“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.”  Psalm 139:14

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