Category Archives: Brian

So we traveled up to Allentown

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Articulture-different look for the Phila. Flower show

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Mighty oaks of Maryland and other things

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A few weeks ago, Brian and I drove down to Rising Sun, Maryland to do a little geocaching. Caching has been not happening that much this winter as we have had a classic ‘Alaskan’ winter. My pal was saying it is milder this year in Alaska than it is on the mainland. They can’t even have their iditarod races this year for lack of snow and cold. Wow!

So we hit a few caches and they involved mostly humongous oak trees. This one was near a school and cemetery. Brian looked like a peanut under it! The cache was pretty easy to find.

 

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Just think of the history this tree has survived through. All the winters, storms, etc. and it’s still standing!

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I’m sure the oak was planted around the same time this meeting house was constructed.

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A few other oak trees along route one were not as lucky. One was near a little cafe, aptly named ‘The Spready Oak’. There was suppose to be a cache tucked in the remains of it, but we couldn’t find it. We went in the cafe, and sure enough the waitress knew all about the cache (she said it like a cache case) and it was gone as she use to put stuff in it. The cache owner knows about it and plans to add a new one.

We found a cute diary in the middle of no where. There were some goats and ponies too. The cache was kind of out in the open, but it probably under bushy leaves in nicer weather.

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That pony nibbled my fingers!

It was lunchtime, but we didn’t want ice cream for the meal. Maybe we’ll come back another time if we remember the place.

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Our last stop was this cemetery that would have been perfect for a Stephen King movie. It was up on a hill. The little church is so tiny (locked up tight and under surveillance). Out of picture range is a modern day housing development.

Well we looked for that cache high and low, and could not find it! I was kind of glad to get moving as the sun was hanging low by the time we gave up. My phone GPS was going too and we missed a cache in a memorial right down the hill! Brian can take about 5-6 caches and call it a day.

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We headed to Oxford and got some produce and ordered pizza from one of the last Pizza Huts around.

A few days later, the three of us were off on a Monday (MLK day) and drove up to the Pottstown, PA area to the Philadelphia Outlets as we had never been to these. There were a few stores I adored- Crabtree and Evelyn and Vera Bradley! I got some long sleeved t-shirts at Talbots too.

We then headed to Skippack, but this wasn’t the best time of year to go there. We looked for about 3 caches and found two.

This past weekend (1/25 to 1/26) I had my mom here to treat her to a show. We sent down to Wilmington and the Dupont Theater to see ‘Ballroom with a Twist’ featuring ‘Dancing with the Stars’ dancers Cheryl Burke, Derek Hough, Tony Dovolani and Peta Murgatroyd. We also were pleasantly surprised by the talent of ‘American Idol’ finalists Von Smith and Gina Glocksen.  Also the Cirque De Soleil acrobats and ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ performers.  The many troupe dancers performed the most.

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We had to climb up to the balcony (oops) but we had a very good point of view of the stage. I don’t remember seeing performers faces so clearly either. The costumes were sparkly and the dancing almost effortless, though certainly not easy.

My mom had a little trouble hearing the question and answer session, but all in all I think she enjoyed the show. I really thought the acrobats were amazing! They used ‘silks’ and twisted and turned on them-I don’t know how they do it!

When we were waiting for Brian to pick us up, we ended up chatting with some ladies who had driven up from Virgina to see the show. I went out to take a few shots and came in and saw the one young lady posing with Von and Gina! I took this quick shot and mine was better than her friend’s shot. I put it on Instragram and she did finally see it.

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Next post will probably be a visit to the Longwood Garden orchid show! (Whenever that will be!)

A neat way to ring in the new year!

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It was almost as if we were in Times Square! It was a town with Square in it’s name-Kennett Square, PA., the mushroom capital of the world. On December 31, 2013, an 8 foot tall wire mushroom was lowered in the middle of town as the timer ticked down to January 1, 2014! This was the 1st annual dropping of the mushroom. The town had a band, food trucks and other entertainment for a few hours. Since it was cold, we went up around 11:15 and parked in a closed bank and walked up. It got really crowded and we saw a few people we knew, one lady twice (had seen her earlier in the grocery store).

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There it was suspended up near the clock tower.

Here’s what it really looked like:

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And the article about it!

 It took a while to get out of the squeeze, but we came home and I was making pizza at 1:15 as my dough hadn’t risen earlier. We had it for lunch the next day.

I also made us a turkey dinner for New Years day. I had to work one day last week and it was a bit rough getting up early.

 Brian probably has a job opportunity delivering newspaper up in Kennett! It’s every day of the week and in the middle of the night, but the pay isn’t bad.  Crossing fingers he can handle it!

I go back to work tomorrow.

Pennsylvania’s only President

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Our Christmas adventures begin!

On November 30th, we took a little trip up to Lancaster, PA to tour the Jame Buchanan house. To make the tour special, they had actors playing Clement C. Moore who penned ’twas the Night Before Christmas, his wife, a housekeeper and Mr. North/St. Nick.

We got there thinking we’d get in on the 4 pm tour, but had to wait until 5 pm. They couldn’t add us to the group. We went around the mansion and took photos of it outside to kill time.

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We would get to see it in the dark all lit up (just the back). I just love when the sun sets at 4 something these days.

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Colonial garden done for the fall

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This was the door we would go in to start the tour.

When it was our turn, Brian, Sean and me were the only ones on the tour.

It was kind of interesting! We got to talk to the actors as if they were the actual people. We tried to take photos, but the lighting was bad.

Buchananhouse13 044This was Mrs. Moore. The tree behind her was gorgeous. It has a big peacock at the top.

We played 1820 parlor games with them. We were suppose to make someone laugh and I said ‘hello handsome’ to Mr. Moore and made his wife laugh! Then we had to read cards which were aimed at the humor of that time. Like the one card would say ‘when should we drink a cordial’ and  the other card say, ‘not a quarter to midnight’. They all chuckled. Ha ha.

The mansion is really a lovely place. They did a nice job decorating it inside and out.

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There were torches lit along the back too. We didn’t go around front to see it lit up!

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The Lancaster Historic org is on the property and this is where we were waiting for our tour. We watched a short movie about Buchanan first. He was a bachelor and a lawyer.

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Buchananhouse13 036Buchanan’s carriage

We thought it was different and fun. We headed to look for a few caches in Lancaster and couldn’t put our hands on them. Pizza Hut was calling our names, so we had dinner there. We did find one lone cache in a metal bus stop on Rt. 30. Brian found it on a ledge on the top inside-in the dark with my phone’s flashlight.

I can’t wait to see what Longwood Gardens did this year!

Scenic shots of Atlantic City

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Last Saturday, Nov. 23rd, the three of us went to Atlantic City for the last ‘rah rah’ of 2013. I shouldn’t say that, because now I am scoping out places that will be decorated for Christmas like the home of President James Buchanan in Lancaster County. So the special treat was for Brian and me to go see one of my favorite singers ever, Bonnie Raitt. I even crocheted a scarf to give to her!

Bonnie was playing in Caesars and we stayed in the Tropicana for the 1st time. We have stayed in 5 out of the 12 now (actually the Sands was torn down, so it’s 4 now).

Brian and I were told taking a jitney was our best bet to get to Caesars. We went and stood a few minutes in the cold and one came along promptly. We had a more interesting experience heading back.

We bought a dinner and show package and had to find the restaurant. It was tucked in the corner of the 3rd floor. We both had Caesar salad and salmon. Brian chose cheese cake and me creme brulee. It was a nice meal!

We had some time to kill, and went over to the mall which wasn’t busy at all. We looked around a few stores, but I was anxious to get back to the venue and see who I could give Bonnie’s scarf too. The ticket guys really didn’t know and it took a bit for them to check to see what to do. Finally I was to give the present to a security guard.

We bet 2 whole dollars-that was it! Good for us!

The theater wasn’t really large and we had good seat in the second row of the back section. Unfortunately people kept climbing over us! We had to stand up at least 7-8 times!

Marc Cohn was the opening act for Bonnie and this was his last performance with her. I grabbed this shot off his Facebook page. Thanks for the memories Marc!

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Found this on youtube, but what a strange angle!

I will treasure this evening forever! Bonnie sang ‘Rainy Day Man’ by another one of my favorites, James Taylor; Angel from Montgomery and so many of her new and older hits.  The little boys above are the sons of Marc and his wife reporter Elizabeth Vargas.

So we had a little trouble getting on the right jitney on the return trip. First we got on one going the wrong way. We thought they turned around maybe? Then the second one was the incorrect number for the Tropicana. So finally we got on the right one, got out and didn’t know how to get in the right area for the hotel part. We had to walk from the bottom level and finally found the right area to go. Sean was gone for a bit longer. He was having fun checking out the night life, but not eating a very filling meal.

We never sleep well the first night and it was warm in the room. We had a difficult time getting up for breakfast, but I did grab the Canon for these shots.

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I’m sure that water was a bit chilly!

AC11_13 002Caesars is in front of that white parking garage. We have stayed there, the Taj Mahal and Revel, the place with the mirrored windows and the globe on the top. The lighthouse in Absecon (which I have climbed) is down the middle near the water-it’s a white dot here.

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The curved roof building is convention center where the Miss America contest is now held again.

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That’s the Borgata with the gold windows and the train station area (I think) and highway.

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They do use wind machines for power!

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What Atlantic City looked like before the casinos. I remember we stayed in a place similar to one of these when we were younger. Not that great.

When we were headed down, we stopped in Marlton, NJ where Sean works now. It’s really a haul for him each day. It’s good experience and if he needs to move closer he may have to as it’s 120 miles a day trip for him!

We stopped a few times coming home, but I wasn’t in the mood to shop and actually snoozed in the car. Yep, it was a long night, but a memorable one.

50 years gone by

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Being a little girl of just 4, I don’t remember too much about this day. I know my mom and grandmom were quiet and the black and white Zenith was on all day long for several days showing coverage that  3 and 4 year old children aren’t very interested in.

Several years later, in 5th grade, I would write a paper about President Kennedy, travel to Washington, DC and then see the Kennedy grave.

Signs pointing to the graves of the Kennedys and Unknown soldiers

Grave of President Kennedy

There were some things about the assassination that I didn’t know and am sorry I had to see…like that lost film footage of the actual fatal shot.

I also didn’t know that they took seats out of Air Force One so the President wouldn’t have to go in the cargo area. Also didn’t know that Johnson wouldn’t have the plane take off without being swore in as President first. Mrs. Kennedy sat with the coffin the entire way back to the nation’s capital.

Eternal flame on Kennedy's grave

When Brian and I were first married, we traveled up to New England on a car trip that took us a week. We saw the Kennedy compound from a far in Hyannisport, MA.

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We also went to Newport, RI and decided to see Jackie’s home ‘Hammersmith’ and took a tour. It was where she and the President had their wedding reception in 1953.

Hammersmith Estate fall 1984

Back of Hammersmith with me

These are from 1984, so not the best quality (and a scan)

Brian is the same age as Caroline and my brother is the same age as John, so you see we grew up with them. When John got killed in 1999, it was like losing a brother.

Life goes on, a new generation of this family may or may not take the limelight. Senator Ted Kennedy was the last of his generation. He was popular and outspoken until the end of his life.

Just recently Caroline became Ambassador to China. This is very interesting. She’s written several books of different genres.

I just heard the pink suit that the First Lady wore on that terrible day won’t be seen by the public until the year 2103 as requested by the family. I don’t blame them.