Friday, July 21, 2017

Thursday, July 20, 2017

VIDEO FROM MEADOWLARK GARDENS


I sound half alseep while narrating this video but we had just walked all over, and up a very steep hill in the gardens, plus the fact that it was extremely hot and muggy.  Excuses over!


I had to smile when I played this back and was talking about the Canada Geese, and knowing what a mess they make but I still love them.  Shortly after I said that, one of them dropped a package, to prove a point.  I only saw this when I played the video back on the larger screen of my laptop.  One eye-roll later I decided to share the video anyhow and yes, I still love them.


Our walks here are very enjoyable, and with plenty of benches in nice, quiet, shady spots, it is lovely to sit for a spell and enjoy the surroundings.


Hope you enjoy.




Wednesday, July 19, 2017

BACK TO THE FAIRY GARDEN....


Every time we go for our walk at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, I never fail to stop by the fairy garden.  



Even fairies and gnomes like to spend time at the beach.



"Spread your wings...



and let the fairy in you fly."



"If I am honest I have to tell you I still read fairy tales and I like them best of all."
~Audrey Hepburn~


"The fairy poet takes a sheet
Of moonbeam, silver white;
His ink is dew from daisies sweet,
His pen a point of light."
~Joyce Kilmer~



"The wall is silence, the grass is sleep,
Tall trees of peace their vigil keep,
And the Fairy of Dreams with moth-wings furled
Plays soft on her flute to the drowsy world."
~Ida Rentoul Outhwaite~




"And as the seasons come and go, here's something you might like to know.  There are fairies everywhere: under bushes, in the air, playing games just like you play, singing through their busy day.  So listen, touch and look around - in the air and on the ground.  And if you watch all nature's things, you might just see a fairy's wing.
~Author Unknown~



Hand in hand, with fairy grace,
Will we sing and bless this place."
~William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream~



"Why should we strive, with cynic frown, to knock their fairy castles down?"
~Eliza Cook~



"Soft moss a downy pillow makes, 
And green leaves spread a tent,
Where Faerie fold may rest 
And sleep until their night is spent.
The bluebird sings a lullaby, 
The firefly gives a light,
The twinkling stars are candles bright, 
Sleep, Faeries all, Good Night."
~Elizabeth T. Dillingham - A Faery Song~



A QUOTE FROM THE GARDEN


"I only went for a walk and finally concluded to stay til sundown, for going out...was really going in."
~John Muir~



Monday, July 17, 2017

BISHOP'S GARDEN AT THE WASHINGTON NATIONAL CATHEDRAL


In the above photo, near the second car from the right parked next to the wall, is the archway leading into the Bishop's Garden.  We are on the seventh floor where we can see the most incredible views.  The photo only shows half of the garden.  There is a large lawn to the right out of sight.











The roses were a little past their prime but I loved the sunflowers.  They were the star of the show today, not forgetting the Cathedral behind them.



















I have a few other photos from here, which I will share later.  However, I wanted to finish this post with a pretty mockingbird atop an old carved stone in the garden.




Sunday, July 16, 2017

TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER, ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY

This video is quite a long one - 9 minutes and 45 seconds - but when I realized we were going to be seeing the Changing of the Guard, I kept the video going.  If you have difficulty seeing it below, the YouTube address is at this link.  


I also must add that there will be those of you who don't have a solid connection.  I know Diane at My Life in Charente 2 hasn't been able to watch any of the videos for that reason.  So sorry Diane but I will be sharing photos in the near future.

Our New Zealand guest is now on the next leg of his journey.  Bill, when you read this, Gregg and I can honestly say we miss you.  You were a wonderful house guest/friend/family member, and we look forward to the time when we can meet up again.


Saturday, July 15, 2017

WASHINGTON NATIONAL CATHEDRAL, WASHINGTON DC


Our last day of sight-seeing with Bill, my fifth cousin, twice removed from New Zealand.  The time spent together has gone by all too quickly.  We asked him if he would like to see the Cathedral, as we had mentioned it several times before on our list of suggestions.  Today was the day.


It is hard to get all in one frame.  You can see a a photographic slide show here.  There was still restorative work going on from the earthquake we had in our area back in August 2011.  More on that in another post.  


After talking to a very nice police officer at the entrance, I ventured on to look around the Cathedral, while Gregg and Bill chatted with him for a while.  You may just be able to make them out on the other side of the photo below.  The Washington National Cathedral has its own police force.


We were able to take photos until the service started at noon.  


The photo below shows the Bethlehem Chapel of the Holy Nativity and has been open since 1912.  Beneath the altar is the Cathedral's foundation stone, which contains a piece of rock from a field near Bethlehem.  It was set on September 29th, 1907, in a ceremony attended by President Theodore Roosevelt.  You can read more at the above link if interested.  

You can also see Bill taking a photo of the altar.


We exited the cathedral at another entrance.  


We took a walk around the Bishop's Garden and entered through this doorway.


I remembered it being a very pretty garden.  It has been years since the last time we came here, at least since before that earthquake I mentioned.









I will have more photos to show you soon.

Friday, July 14, 2017

MOUNT VERNON - GEORGE WASHINGTON'S HOME


This morning off we went to Mount Vernon, 
the home of George Washington


There had been a condensed movie on Washington's military and political life near the museum, which also showed how he had met Martha.  Gregg took a photo of us with George, Martha and their grandchildren.  These are statues that show their actual height.


We had a very leisurely walk along a path shaded by large trees.  Gregg had gotten us tickets for an 11.45 a.m. showing around the house.  


He must have been very hot in that outfit even in the shade, but I thought he looked great.


We actually took a shortened walk around the house, first floor only.  There is air-conditioning of a sorts but there were so many people making their way through the house.  We decided to do the ground floor only.  I remembered how steep the steps were coming down and there looked like there was a person on each step. It seemed way too much of a crush.  Instead we were very happy to sit outside on the veranda.


By this time there was actually a nice breeze cooling us off, just a little.


This link will take you to a very nice website that shows you what the inside of Mount Vernon looks like.  As a matter of interest, in the central hall you will find the Key to the Bastille, given to George Washington by the Marquis de Lafayette in 1790.  This was after the destruction of this infamous prison in Paris.  As today is actually Bastille Day, I thought our French blogging friends might be interested. To see this key you need to scroll down the page a bit.


You cannot take photos inside the house but I remember one of the staff telling me that I could take them in the kitchen.  


Now this is a memory from our last visit, and I am hoping they didn't change the rules.  There was no one in this room to say no.


It was a very nice visit indeed.










When we were finished looking at the house, we made our way back to the Mount Vernon Inn Tavern for lunch.  We separated briefly at this point, as I had wanted to make a quick stop in the garden (photos at a later date), while Bill and Gregg made their way back to the museum.  They had wanted to take a look around and I was eager to look at the garden.  On the far side you can see the greenhouse but it was locked.  Just as well really as this was supposed to be a short stop.


This is the room where we sat waiting for our table at the tavern.  It took about 20 minutes to be seated.  Full of pretty paintings and elegant, comfortable seating.


We were shown a table in one of the larger dining areas.


I always enjoy the colonial style murals on the walls.


Bill enjoyed his fish of the day meal. 


I had a fried green tomato-avocado sandwich, with home-made potato chips and a side of potato salad.  (I had to take half the sandwich home and all of the potato salad.  We had ordered a cup of peanut and chestnut soup for a starter, and also the cornbread which I remembered being really excellent.  Bill ordered a vegetable soup/soup of the day.  No photos of any of these.)


Gregg ordered a grilled grouper sandwich with coleslaw.


The food was yummy and the staff were friendly, a delightful experience for the three of us.


We decided not to go anywhere else after Mount Vernon, and went straight home.  It was about 3.00 p.m.  Later Gregg took Bill out as he needed to pick up a couple of items for traveling.  We only have one day left before he leaves, and that makes me a little sad.