Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


Ongoing Thankfulness


I know Thanksgiving is over, but is it ever really time to stop being grateful?


Anyway, that’s my excuse for posting about Thanksgiving at this late date. 🙂

stw thanksgivingadored Thanksgiving until I started doing all the work. (I’ve never done ALL the work, but often it seems that way! LOL)

Perfect Hostess (Sister Debbie) invited the family to her house for the holiday.


Sweet Janyce’s fireplace in Deb’s house. Perfect fit!

My kiddos were all with the in-laws, so I went to Deb’s.

Then on Friday, G-Man and I met four of our six kiddos. Can you guess where we went?


Isn’t she gorgeous? Many people never notice her, so lets try this picture. Does it tell you anything?


The view from our balcony.

I know this one will give it away.

crescent-hotel-signOur hotel is advertised on this building. Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs. We had adjoining rooms and used the same balcony. It was great!

our-balcony2A little chilly to sit out at night, but we enjoyed it anyway.

I wanted to take a family picture, but #3 son received a phone call that sent him flying home (someone tested their burglar alarm for them) before #2 son could get there. But I got a few almost family pictures.

3-4-of-the-crewThis one is my favorite. (Me: “Smile, Gary.” Gary: “I am smiling.”)

#1 son (the idea guy) thought of this one.

part of the crewFor some reason I had a little trouble getting rid of the red in my sweater. Kind of fun, though, isn’t it? 🙂

Our hotel is supposed to be haunted. We didn’t have any visitors, but this lamp had a little extra spirit.

haunted-lampIt kept going on and off. (Probably a wiring thing, but hey, haunted works, too.)


The missing kiddos, Nikki and Matt.

I have my fingers crossed for a Christmas family picture. “Everyone wear your pajamas!” 🙂

Someone asked me what we do in Eureka Springs, we go there so often. Hmmm. Good question. Well, I love the shops. I look to look at antiques. And there are some wonderful places to eat. It’s  a great place to hang out and be with family and watch people.

I love watching people. Don’t you?

Back to Ongoing Thankfulness. I’m oh, so very thankful every day for my family and my friends. All of them!

How about you. Now that the month for telling everyday something that you’re thankful for is over, are you still thankful?

For what?




Springing Eureka

As I mentioned Monday, some of our kids spent time with us in Eureka Springs this last weekend, so I thought we’d do a few things we’d never done before. G-Man and I’ve been to Eureka so many times, there’s not a whole lot we haven’t done, but I found a couple of things.

We toured the springs! (Yes, there are springs in Eureka Springs. LOL!)

It’s funny, but we’d never spent time actually exploring the thing ES is named for.

Eureka was first established because of the healing quality of the natural springs. Indians believed in the healing power, Civil War soldiers recouped there. And (I hear) people still soak in the hot springs in some of the spas. We didn’t do that. (Maybe on the next trip.)

The first spring we visited was inside an antique store. Yes, we bit the bullet 😛 and shopped at that store so we could see the Gadd Spring.

We loved this shop. Probably could have spent the entire time we stayed in Arkansas just exploring the place and grounds.

Can you imagine the joy of having this inside your shop? Too cool!

See the water falling toward the bottom of the picture? That’s the spring, springing! Great place to grow plants.

e-Gadd! 🙂 LL–this pic is for you. It’s a banana plant growing next to Gadd Spring.

Basin Spring

This is the spring most people see, but I’m not sure they realize it’s the spring. The water has been routed to this fountain, which runs pretty much all the time. Beautiful, isn’t it?

 Laundry and/or Onyx Spring

This spring had two names. It was called Laundry Spring, because so many people did their wash there, back in the day.

 This bench says, “Onyx Spring,” because at one time, there was onyx there. It’s gone now.

Looks like a water fountain, doesn’t it? Several of the springs have those, but there are signs that say, “Do not drink the water.”

We didn’t.

Grotto Spring

This was a gorgeous place. Lots of room to climb or just hang around.

Here’s the undrinkable fountain at that location. We met a woman from the area with her two kids (and their dog, Barney) at this spring. The kids were polite, obedient and delightful. The woman was friendly and full of helpful knowledge.

She told us about walking trails, where we could find free maps, and that we could go into any of the public areas at the Crescent Hotel without worry. (I’ll tell you about visiting The Most Haunted Hotel in the World on Halloween.)

Then we ran into this woman and her kids every place we went. She even stayed at our hotel for the weekend so her kids could swim, so we had breakfast near each other a few times. (She could sniff out a full coffee pot with the best of them!)

Is that a cool mom or what?

Grotto Spring Cave

This candle was burning in Grotto Spring Cave, wherethe spring originates. The woman from ES hated it being there because, she said, it’s killing the cave life.

We didn’t blow it out anyway.

Magnetic Spring

The last spring we visited was Magnetic Spring. It’s near the bottom of Magnet Road, which leads from the Passion Play to Main Street. I’m not sure why they named it Magnetic.

Like the others, this spring was lush and beautifully landscaped.

This is Matt, standing in front of the two basins, filled with water. We drove by once and saw some kids wading in it. The water was up to their thighs.

The upper basin spills into the lower basin, keeping them both fresh and pretty.

I hoped we could do the family pic at one of the springs, but that didn’t happen. Gonna have to try for some group shots again. Soon!