Poor Miss Pine

Posted on June 6, 2024 by Bedfordlandings

In 1976, I was only 6 inches tall.  Starting my new life in a dorm room, I have witnessed many life events. In my more than 40 years I have met dogs, cats, and babies, witnessed power outages, panic, terror, sadness, anxiety, surprise, and joy as I have moved from Virginia to Michigan, back to Virginia, to Missouri, North Carolina, and back again to Virginia. Two different families fostered me while Bedford Landings was being built. But finally I have found a comfortable place to winter in the breakfast room; and summer in the sun of the screened porch. As my best, I stood over 7 feet tall. I add new growth each summer.  Unfortunately, I would also shed fronds and some of my lower branches became a bit drafty.  But, I have had many ancestors that have grown to over 200 feet tall.  Proudly, I wear white lights to give a soft glow to the breakfast room where people are stunned that I am actually a live Norfolk Pine.  At Christmas, small ornaments adorn my branches and through it all, I proudly am referred to as “Miss Pine!” and “Miss Pine of Bedford Landings” to my important friends!

Well, now we have sad news. As the years went by, standing guard at Bedford Landings B & B, my pot began to rot so my owners decided to do me a favor and get me a new pot. I got new soil and a healthy new start. But somehow that didn’t agree with my system. More fronds shed than should have in the Spring of 2024. At 48 years old, it appeared I was withering away from my best to looking my worst. My owners were perplexed as to what to do. And here is what happened. As she cried, she sawed me down. Yes, with an actual saw. She took my best part and saved it in hopes I could root somehow. She also stuck a small piece back into the soil. If I bear children, I will be amazed truly!

Miss Pine losing her fronds

I am not angry with her, but maybe, just maybe there will be a miracle and my life will be perpetuated.

Shortened Miss Pine
Stump of Miss Pine

Nothing to do now except watch the passers by and hope that I can sprout. I will try really hard! Stay tuned!

You are my Sunshine!

Posted on April 12, 2024 by Bedfordlandings

We decided to take in the 2024 solar eclipse in Wapakoneta, Ohio.  We made the reservations in December, know there would be a mad rush for the “band of totality.” It was a short 2-hour flight from Smith Mountain Lake. We were the third plane to arrive and the gas attendant filled our tank right away, knowing that he had the day ahead of him filling tanks.  Once we landed, we set up “camp” beside the airplane.  We had a rental car, but the excitement was imminent, so rather than checking into our overnight stay, we remained in place awaiting eclipse start time of 1:54 pm. 

Airplane and sun chairs

Over the loud speaker, a disc jockey was asking solar system trivia questions and playing music with the SUN in them such as “Here come the Sun” and “Walking on Sunshine.” I never heard my all-time favorite, “You are My Sunshine!”

At least eight people stopped to admire Jack’s airplane and ask where we were from.  One little woman approached us and asked where we flew in from.  She said she just lived across the street and wanted to take our picture. Awww. We smiled!

It was a festive atmosphere and clear skies.  The jet trails were evident but so was the warmth of the sunshine!  Dressing in layers, we began peeling them off as the temperature rose.  I was so glad we didn’t have to stand in the food truck line since we had taken sandwiches and bottled water.

At 1:54 the slightest curve of the moon moved over the path of the sun. 

Beginning of the eclipse

Little by little, the sun became covered.  I took a picture of my watch at 3:00. 


I don’t know why but the day just seemed eventful!  Using my solar filter over my camera lens, I snapped picture after picture, some blurry and some un-centered. At 3:09, the DJ started playing the theme song from “2001 a Space Odyssey.” It was perfect for the occasion.  Later he told me his wife made him promise not to play “It’s the End of the word as we know it!”

At totality, the temperature became cool and the shared experience of everyone at the airport was created.  We were one community sharing a Godly phenomenon. 

Eclipse at totality

In the darkness, I wrapped a small blanket around my shoulders and enjoyed what looked like a brief sunset. Even the security lights on the airport were triggered by the darkness. In this three-minute lapse, we saw some stars and Venus!  I am telling you, I will never feel the power of the earth, the moon, and the sun in concert with humanity ever again!

Eclipse sunset

You are my Sunshine!

It’s Pollen Season!

Posted on April 10, 2024 by Bedfordlandings

During pollen season in Virginia, you may hear sneezes, coughing, sniffing, and grouchy complaints about itchy watery eyes and yellow pollen.  It makes one dread this beautiful  season…but Ahhh–choo!

What are you allergic to?  I am not even sure I know what bothers me, but I know if I am outside for too long doing spring planting, blowing pollen, or even a little touch up paint, I have to come inside after a bit.  My throat feels parched, and my eyes feel full – not sure of what but that’s my sensation!

According to Yale Medicine, in March and April it is the tree pollen and in June it is the grass pollen.  In the Fall it is ragweed, and in the winter, mold! They recommend wearing a hat outdoors and changing clothes and washing your hair to avoid pollen on your pillow!  As simple as it sounds, I had never thought about this.  But it may apply to the dog too! 

Some people swear by a humidifier, nasal sprays, steam and essential oils.  Adding Eucalyptus, Frankincense, Lavender, Rosemary, and Sandalwood to a steam shower or neti-pot may help.   Ginger tea is said to help alleviate inflamed bronchial passages.

Essential oils

As much as I hate not opening the windows during the cool spring nights, I know it can lead to poor results. Replacing your ventilation system filters before and after the season is a consideration!

What about the Yellow Pollen?

Yellow pollen on glass table

The first time I saw the thick yellow pollen, it was tax season so I know that about mid April, the yellow powder becomes prolific! When I first experienced it, it looked as if a bomb had dropped.  Come to find out, the pine trees were mating (of sorts).  The best thing about pine pollen is that is is much larger (in size) than other tree pollen so that it cannot get up into the nasal passages as easily as smaller pollens. Blowing with the blower creates a huge cloud and after a rain, the pavement is just floating yellow dust!

So for the season, wait it out!  Wash the dog, change your clothes often and enjoy a nice lavender steam bath!  Carry on!

People are Funny

Posted on March 29, 2024 by Bedfordlandings

As innkeepers you can imagine that we have all sorts of great people visit and some who just don’t understand what a Bed & Breakfast is.  When people refer to us as an Air B & B, we stop and assure them that we are a REAL B & B.  In a real B & B, you meet the owners, who serve as hosts, concierges, chefs, housekeepers, maintenance staff, and psychologists! 

We don’t have many rules.  Mainly, they are; no glass in the hot tub (use plastic glasses) and don’t mess with the hot tub temperature. We conduct a little guest orientation upon arrival and tell them that they may go anywhere in the house except our room or the kitchen.  That’s about it!

Here are a few fun guest examples:

Breakfast plate

By and large (I mean 98.5% of the time) we love our guests!  We want them to come back too!

Don’t feel you need to be added to the “unusual story” list as you ponder making a reservation but feel free to share your stories when you do come! And visit Doolittle!

Boy and dog

It’s a Mystery to me!

Posted on February 15, 2024 by Bedfordlandings

In exchange for a set of new tires, Melissa, the baker promised to share her secret recipe for coconut scones with the local Mechanic, Sid. Trying the recipe, Sid said that in no way did it resemble Melissa’s famous scones which sold out every day by 8:45. Sid confronted Melissa and she told him that he must have done something wrong. The next day Louis found Melissa dead on the floor of the bakery…murdered!

This is how it all begins…the rest of the evening is spent trying to solve the mystery. If you enjoy playing a fictional part and working to solve a mystery by interviewing others (who are also playing a part) then this is the exciting evening of winter fun at Smith Mountain Lake that you would like! Bedford Landings Bed & Breakfast is again hosting a Murder Mystery!

We need 35 people to make it fun.  There are 8 slots left open.  All you need to do is email Karen@bedfordlandings.com.

You will be invoiced for $35 for the fun evening which includes hot and cold appetizers. It is a BYOB event. Two days prior to the event, you will be emailed your character bio with which to become familiar.

Bedford Landings is located off White House Road near the state park and neat the SML Airport. Arrival time is 5:30 pm on Saturday March 2, 2024.

Contact us right away to reserve your space!

PS. The above is not this year’s story line so don’t work too hard on that solution!

Woman laughing

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