Burritt On the Mountain

Burritt on the Mountain is wonderful place to visit.  It’s located on Monte Sano Mountain and it overlooks the city of Huntsville, Alabama.

The historic park is filled with homes, antiques, and a barnyard from the 19th century.  Most of the homes are open, allowing visitors to freely explore.  There are a lot of informational signs posted around the park, which is designed to educate visitors on how people lived during that time period.

The park even has play areas for children, so they can dress up as pioneers, pan for gold, or climb on carriages.

The Burritt Mansion is part of the park and is also open to visitors.  Dr. William Henry Burritt built the mason in the 1930’s.  Dr. Burritt was born in 1869, in Huntsville, Alabama.  He worked as a homeopathic physician and he spent his retirement years at the mansion.

The mansion is gorgeous and was built with a variety of architectural styles, including classical, revival, federal, and art deco.

If you ever visit Huntsville, make sure to check out Burritt on the Mountain.


Thinking About Music – Quotes

One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.  – Bob Marley

Music, at its essence, is what gives us memories.  And the longer a song has existed in our lives, the more memories we have of it.  – Stevie Wonder


Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy.  – Ludwig Von Beethoven

I think music in itself is healing.  It’s an explosive expression of humanity.  It’s something we are all touched by.  No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.  – Billy Joel

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer


I enjoy reading the book “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer.  I have read it about five or six times.  The book looks at the life of Chris McCandless and the front cover sums it up pretty well.

In April 1992, a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley.  His name was Christoper Johnson McCandless.  He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a life for himself.  Four month later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter… 

There are three things that really struck me about the life of Chris McCandless.

  1.  Unfortunately, his youthfulness worked against him.  He always felt invincible and believed things would somehow work out in the end.  He did some research, but was unprepared for what he was about to attempt.  His reckless abandonment would eventually be his downfall and cost him his life.  In my youth, I was also reckless and foolish.  However, I got lucky and I am still here today.
  2. I understand that desire for adventure.  I understand that desire to be your own person and to follow your own path.  I still seek after adventure today.  I still strive to be my own person and to follow my own path.
  3. Chris had a dream and he refused to give up on that dream.  I can respect that.  There are so many people walking around with their mind full of dreams, but they are afraid to step out of their comfort zone.  They will spend their life wondering what could have been.


As a side note:

I bought this book from a thrift store many years ago and on the first page is a handwritten note, “Tony Hawk June ’98.”

In case you don’t know, Tony Hawk is a famous skateboarder, an X-Games champion, and has his own line of skateboards.

The inscription looks like Tony Hawk’s handwriting, so I am pretty sure he is the one that wrote the note and that he used to own this book.

I think that is really cool.


How to be Happy – Quotes

Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.  – Anne Frank

Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.  – Marcel Proust

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Life is like a roller coaster, live it, be happy, enjoy life.  – Avril Lavigne

When I am myself, I am happy and have a good result.  – Jack Ma

Faith in the Love of Jesus

The other day, I was reading Matthew 15:21-28.

21 And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyreand Sidon. 22 And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.” 23 But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, “Send her away, for she is crying out after us.” 24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” 25 But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me.” 26 And he answered, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” 27 She said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” 28 Then Jesus answered her, “O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed instantly. (ESV)

I started thinking about the Jewish society of that time.  It was extremely prejudicial, and a person’s worth or cleanliness was largely based on race and ethnic origin.  As a Canaanite and a woman, she would have been viewed with disdain.  Also, the statement made by Jesus echoes that sentiment.

However, the woman trusted Jesus.  She believed him to be fair and loving.  She trusted him to not judge her based on superficial things.  Her trust in the love of Jesus was not misplaced.  Jesus healed her daughter and commented on her great faith.


Childhood Predictions for the Year 2000


In 1980, I was seven years old and a student at Mannheim Elementary School in Mannheim, Germany.  My teacher assigned a creative writing project in which we would predict what life would be like in the year 2000.

That was twenty years into the future, which seemed like an eternity to me.  I thought about it for a few minutes and then I began writing.

The first thing I said was that I would probably be dead of old age by then.  I also wrote about people having personal robots to do all the housework and having their own spaceships to travel to other planets for vacation.

Well, I am glad to say that I did not die of old age by the year 2000.  However, I would like to have a personal robot and a spaceship.


The Hammock Life

We put a hammock in our backyard the other day and it has been a lot fun.  I enjoy reading and relaxing in the hammock.  Sometimes, one of the dogs will jump in and chill out with me.

Gwen also enjoys relaxing in the hammock, so we may have to create a hammock schedule for each person.


At the Thaler house, we are living the hammock life.