Monday, June 23, 2008

On the Road Again June 23, 2008

After a week at Table Rock, it was time for us to check out and get on the road again. We traveled north and at south of Asheville, we visited the North Carolina Arboretum. We saw an excellent painting exhibit by Luke Allsbrook--mostly landscape paintings of Western NC. We also walked around the gardens and bought some souvenirs. After that, to avoid traffic delays at a tunnel in VA, we traveled the small twisty/turny small roads of VA to get to WV--beautiful farmscapes. Now we're staying overnight at a Budget Inn at Beckley, WV.
Tomorrow we'll meet Mark's nephew, Brent, and his girlfriend, Rachel, in Athens, OH (home of Ohio University) for lunch and then onward to Granville, OH to stay overnight with Mark's Aunt Dot and Uncle Jim. Good night!

Jones Gap State Park June 22, 2008

Today we went to Jones Gap State Park, a neighboring park east of Table Rock. We saw the Jones Gap Falls. I also did some photography while Mark painted at various locations along the Middle Saluda River. It looked like the trail is a popular spot for hikers and their dogs and families with children.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Sketching and Photographing

This morning, we decided to try out a breakfast buffet at Aunt Sue's Country Corner, 2 miles east of Table Rock State Park. We had eggs, hash browns, biscuits, gravy, grits and coffee.
After that, we hiked along Carrick Creek again but this time in a leisurely pace since we wanted to stop and explore to do some photography and sketching. When thunder began rolling, we returned to the cabin for lunch and a nap.
Now we're at the Visitors' Center again to do some blogging and Mark bought a souvenir t-shirt and some postcards. Those same Canada geese are going around and around eating grass like lawn mowers!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Blogging and Sketching June 20, 2008

I am blogging at the Visitors' Center while Mark went hiking to do some concentrated sketching/painting. We'll meet up again later this evening. Here's a view of Table Rock Mtn from the porch of the Center, with some Canada geese thrown in.

Greenville City June 19, 2008

We took the day off from hiking and went into the city of Greenville. We cruised Main Street downtown until we found a place to eat. We lunched at Bertolo's and we each ate an eggplant parmesan sub with chips. In the same building was the Artists Guild Gallery of Greenville, a co-op gallery. I bought a pair of metal earrings by Laura Dahl. She does etched metalwork. Afterwards, we strolled the beautiful Falls Park on the Reedy River, centered around its waterfalls. Along the river, there was a retail section called Art Crossing where artists can rent a studio space and people can visit the artists at work. Then we took a break at Spill the Beans Cafe to check our email on our laptop. After that, we visited the Greenville County Museum of Art (always FREE admission!) and viewed a watercolor exhibit of Andrew Wyeth and His Contemporaries. We chose Thursday to go into Greenville since the museum is open until 8 pm. There was a free concert that evening but we were too tired to stay for it.

Pinnacle Mtn Trail June 18, 2008

We hiked another long, long trail, this time, the Pinnacle Mountain Trail, Mill Creek Falls Pass and part of Ridge Trail. This was about 8 miles from 8 am until 7 pm. Needless to say, my legs were VERY tired at the end of the hike. They were stiff as logs and I felt like I couldn't move anymore.
On the hike, we saw salamanders while wading around on the falls. Mark saw a mama bear with 2 cubs but I had missed them (I just didn't have the strength to climb a short slope quickly to see them in a ravine in time.)
At Bald Rock, Mark did a fast sketch of Table Rock Mtn. This trail was more woodland-like and we saw lots of blooming Painted Indian flowers.

Table Rock Trail June 17, 2008

We hiked the Table Rock Trail, up and back, about 7.2 miles total from 7:30 am until 4:30 pm. It was tiring! My sandal strap broke and luckily Mark had his velcro pant leg strap to tie down my broken sandal. At the top, we could see the reservoir lake that provides the drinking water to the City of Greenville. At the end of the hike, we were eager to soak our hands and feet in the Carrick Creek waterfall.

Table Rock State Park, SC June 16--23, 2008

This year, Mark is doing his Artist-in-Residency at Table Rock State Park in the "Upstate" area of South Carolina. This is his 4th year doing this kind of residency. In exchange for a free week stay at a park cabin, Mark agrees to donate a piece of artwork, inspired by our stay, to the hosting state park.

On 6/16, we drove to Table Rock State Park (in Pickens County) via Macon, Eatonton, Athens, GA. In Eatonton, we visited the Uncle Remus Museum and tried to find Alice Walker's childhood home but didn't have time. In Athens, home to the University of GA, we lunched at Eat Hibachi, a Korean/Japanese eatery. We ate tasty bibimbop. Now why can't we have such a eatery in Tallahassee?!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

2 Latest Paintings

Mark is currently working on 2 poem paintings. One is titled "In a Pomegranate Way", commissioned by Dick Puckett, retired director of LeMoyne Center for the Visual Arts. When he commissioned the piece, he had only ask Mark to create something about the fruit pomegranate. The other painting, "Maid in the Shade" is for the upcoming juried group exhibit at LeMoyne titled "Soul Mates" (

Monday, June 09, 2008

Go Green! June 13--July 11, 2008

Mark and I have collaborated on 3 pieces for this exhibit. His poems are illustrated by my photographs. The opening reception is this Friday the 13th! 7--9pm at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts. The exhibit is the Artists' League Summer Annual ( . Come out and see this environmental show!

Update on Eva's Visit

Yesterday, after their boating excursion, while Mark and Charlie were tying up the boat, poor Eva misstepped on the floating walkway and fell into the water. She also hit her head on the concrete seawall. She got a bump on the back of her head but she seems OK now. Her camera, unfortunately, also went into the water. It may not work anymore but luckily her camera card is OK. We checked it at a local Walgreens today and all her photos were intact.

So today we took it easy and went shopping at New Leaf Market, a local natural foods store. We also browsed at Crystal Connection, a New Agey store and lunched at Habana Boardwalk, a recently opened Cuban cafe. Eva had shrimp in wine sauce with fried yuca and sweet plantains while Mark ate the usual fish in beer sauce and I had the pan con vegetales.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Mark's Mom's Visit to Tallahasee June 4--10, 2008

Mark's mom, Eva, is currently visiting with us in Tallahassee. She flew down from Cleveland to view The Story exhibit at the FSU Museum of Fine Arts since her own parents' hand-created books are part of Mark's mini-installations in the show.

In addition to MoFA, we have also
June 5: visited the Tallahassee Community College Art Gallery and dined at Bianca's Italian Restaurant
June 6: visited the Florida Caverns State Park, lunched at Old Ice House Restaurant in Marianna where Eva posed with a 13-ft gator and participated in the First Friday Gallery Hop at Railroad Square in Tallahassee
Today we'll visit Havana and dine with the Corbetts. Tomorrow Mark and Eva will go boating with the Donahues on the St Marks River.
Check the blog again later to find out what we're up to!