Tag Archives: steam train

Birthdays Through The Years

As happens around this time each year, today is my birthday.

And while thinking of what to post about today, I’ve been remembering special birthdays of mine through the years.

During my childhood, there weren’t elaborate parties…usually just a cake (made by Mom) and ice cream with family.

One year, a school friend was invited to join us, and she gave me a bottle of lilac scented bubble bath.  Now, the bubble bath was nice, but what was really special was that bottle.  It was just a plastic bottle, roundish on the bottom, but the neck was really long.  This was around the time that my niece and I loved watching “I Dream Of Jeannie” on tv. And through our world of make believe, that empty bubble bath bottle became our “Jeannie bottle”.

The next special birthday was the year I turned eighteen. That year, I received the best present EVER: I graduated from high school ON my eighteenth birthday.  As someone who hated school, I was one happy girl that day.

Junior year pic; I didn’t care for the senior one

My twenty-first birthday was spent at the beach at the Outer Banks.  And I thought my mom would probably like to talk to me on my birthday. Those were the days before cell phones, so I went to a nearby phone booth and called to talk to her.

Not a picture from that trip, but the same era

A few years later, on my birthday just twelve days before Marshall was born, I was having complications with the pregnancy, so I celebrated that one in the hospital. No problem at all: my sole purpose in life at that point was doing whatever was necessary to get him here safely.

Eleven days after that birthday spent in the hospital, and just hours before Marshall arrived

The birthdays since have been spent in various ways…. low-key and celebrating with family and friends.  Motor Man usually treats me to a special outing around the time of my birthday.

A few years ago, when he asked what I’d like to do, I suggested taking a wild horse tour.  At that time, we didn’t have a four-wheel drive vehicle, so we booked a private tour with the Corolla Wild Horse Fund. It was so educational and fun: we were hooked. This little one soon joined his mom who had strolled down that path to the left.

Three years ago, we went parasailing in the Outer Banks (wait, that was on HIS list, not mine).

Two years ago, we went for a steam engine ride with special friends Bev and Bill and Pam and Dave.

And, last year, Motor Man took me to meet April, the giraffe.

This year, we don’t have any trips planned.  Yesterday we went to the Outer Banks to see “my” horses , and I’ll share more about that on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, today, I’m celebrating with my two guys, and the coming days will be more gatherings with friends. I am so blessed to have a loving family and special friends in my life.

As I’ve said before, I believe the older you get, the longer birthdays should last.

~These Days Of Mine~




Autumn Train

Last Saturday morning, Motor Man and I headed out early with our friends, Bev and Bill, to West Virginia. We had learned of two train rides that we hadn’t yet experienced, and hoped our visit would coincide with a pretty fall foliage weekend.

Umm…Houston, we have a problem.

Near Waynesboro, Virginia, we ran into a rare (for that area) October snow storm.

Although the scenery didn’t include much fall foliage, we did see some beautiful sights along the way.


After about a 6-hour drive, we eventually made it to Durbin, West Virginia, where we boarded the Durbin Rocket. The steam engine was a smaller one than on our previous rides.

The light snowfall made for some pretty scenery during the train ride.

See the caboose at the end of the track? That’s called the “Castaway Caboose”. It was dropped off the day before, and some adventurous, brave foolish folks had spent the night there.  Perhaps I don’t understand the appeal of seclusion, but keep in mind that there is absolutely no cell phone service here. That’s enough to make me say “thanks, but no thanks”.  (They do provide you with a load of firewood for your overnight stay.)

I’d rather be riding that train back to civilization.

Oh, and by the way, we DID see some fall foliage along  the way.