And the birds were singing of you.

As we write, the birds are singing, the grass is dancing in the wind and the mountain tops shine bright in the sun.  It’s a beautiful day to reflect on a busy few weeks.  We traveled south to NC, GA and AL this past week and only suffered a few rainy days, just a little bit of traffic and one minor accident that left a banjo player only two fingers for the evening concert (*more on this later).  We’ve finally jumped back on the picture wagon and have lots to share!

First, we did an amazing photo shoot with the talented and oh-so-cool Jack Looney out at Veritas Winery last week.  It was the early afternoon with the sun blazing down.  Some may argue this is NOT the opportune time to do a photo shoot but good photographers make it work.  We jammed with the Blue Ridge in view and some tasty grapes within grasp.  We shared laughs and a few sneezes in the hay fields.  Afterward, we tasted wine and some delicious food at Blue Mtn. Brewery (check out the Steel Wheels there in August- a soon-to-be-beer will be named after them!)  Not a bad way to spend our Tuesday afternoon:

Just warming up. Photo by Jack Looney

A beautiful setting in Afton.  Photo by Jack Looney.

Under the shady tree. Photo by Jack Looney.

Barry and Kagey, tasting at Blue Mtn. Brewery!  Photo by Barry’s iPhone.

Holding each other up after a tasting of Veritas’ finest. Photo by Barry.

We also spent some time catching up with friends near Scottsville, our town of residence until a year ago.  We ate delicious food from the garden and caught up on important things like the best vineyards in town and how working in a tasting room might be a pretty awesome job.

Eliza and Rachael checking on the plants.

Rachael and Chris’ yummy radishes for the salad that night.

We spent a rainy Monday near Boone, NC at a beautiful farm/bed and breakfast called the Mast Farm Inn that has hosted the likes of Dan Tyminski among others.  Only 25 people can squeeze into the homey dining room for a house-concert-like show, but you could feel the love in the room.  The evening was complete with a fun, fun show and beautiful accommodations, not to mention the kind Deschamps family.

Our beautiful cabin with mountain views.

We couldn’t be happier to see their methods of organic gardening and bee-keeping.

After a beautiful evening in Boone, we headed further southwest to Asheville for a quick visit with our friends Red June.  We shared more delicious food and drooled over Jody Stecher and Kate Brislin’s recordings of Utah Phillips material.  So fun to have friends to dork-out over music together.  Thanks John and Natalya:)

Kagey and Natalya playing an early morning fiddle-tune.

We returned home only to be surprised by a lovely pendant in the mail for Laura made by John Miller himself from agatized moss in the Wyoming Wind River region.

Laura displaying the pendant proudly.

And finally, a few weeks back at our Mockingbird show, we had a surprise visit from Trent Wagler (of the Steel Wheels) and his 6 year old daughter Maia who made us this lovely “Good Job” drawing complete with orange blossom.  Thanks Maia!

Sweet as Honey:

1.  A beautiful afternoon spent in the mountains drinking wine, beer and playing tunes with Barry.

2. Jack Looney.

3.  Dinner and a movie with Michele, Rachael and Virginia!

4.  Revisiting good old Route 20 South.

5.  Henri Deschamps– a music enthusiast and advocate.  So kind!

6.  Catching up with Will Straughan (of Red June) at Acoustic Corner for a hug and chat.

7.  Salad greens, beet greens, John’s pasta salad, and roasted veggies in Asheville.

8.  Yogurtberry with Jack and Fran in Atlanta (for a split second).

9.  Playing in the same church in Huntsville, AL where some of the music was recorded for O’ Brother Where Art Thou?

10.  Joe and Erin for their kind hospitality after our show in Birmingham.

11.  Matt Arnett and his enthusiasm for music at Grocery on Home.

12. Driving 8 hours home but stopping first at Dr. Ho’s to have a few beers with Ma and Pa Wortman.

*Okay, we promised to tell you what happened.  After a fine purchase of some local beets from the Birmingham Farmer’s Market, Laura proceeded to peel them for dinner, only to slice off a bit of middle finger knuckle in the process.  No worries, plenty of bandages, Neosporin and arnica will do the trick.  The banjo awaits!


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