Friday, October 30, 2009

Arlington National Cemetery

Welcome to Arlington National Cemetery...... Our Nations Most Sacred Grounds.......

And what Hallowed Grounds they are.............

This is a site to see..... The changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers, which holds the bodies of unidentified soldiers from WWI and WWII, the Korean War, is guarded by the soldiers of the Third Infantry. They changing of the guard is done in a reverent display of 21 steps which symbolizes the 21-gun national salute....... given to our nation's heroes.

This is the site of the Eternal Flame given to John Fitzgerald Kennedy, our 35th President of the United States. Next to him are 3 other grave sites...... Jackie Kennedy Onassis, Patrick Kennedy and Caroline Kennedy (reserved). This is very touching to my heart because all the emotional days after his assassination. I will never forget how he led the country with his famous quote "Ask not what your Country can do for you ..... ask what you can do for your Country".

This simple grave site was also very tender to my heart because how it hit my home. Bobby Kennedy was the hope for a lot of young Americans, and my sister Mary was down at the National Headquarters in San Francisco working for his campaign. She had just seen him the night he was assassinated.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Monticello....... the dream house of Thomas Jefferson. It sits on a hilltop overlooking Charlottesville and the 2,000 remaining acres of the Jefferson family's original 5,000 acre plantation.
This is the man..... a man who was a visionary, principal author of the Declaration of Independence, founder of the University of Virginia and the 3rd President of the United States. On of his most quoted statements is "I can not live without books"....... sounds like a daughter, a daughter in law and a son in law of mine.......

The orchards, fields and gardens reflect Jefferson's love of the landscape design. Jefferson's most enduring horticultural achievement at Monticello is his gardens. He had more then 330 varieties of more then 70 species of vegetables. He was one of the first to plant wine grapes here in the "New World."
James Monroe's house that he called Highlands House. It is now called Ash Lawn-Highland..... This was a good tour and gave us a insight on the simpler life of Monroe, a good friend of Jefferson and the 5th President of the United States.

The man......... James Monroe

Appalachian Trail

This is some of the gorgeous colors that we saw up at Big Meadows Campground. This campground was just great....
This Skyline Drive is just breathtaking. The colors of Fall do not show as great as I would wish but you can get the idea.
We went on a 3 mile ranger guided hike--- this is the trail. She told us about the different trees/plants (black cherry tree is now almost gone and a tea plant is hard to find), where some cabins used to be, the history of the trail and some great stories of hikers of the trail. The first woman to hike the trail was a 60 year old. What a character she was. She talked about the "magic of the trail"...... I was pretty cold and a lady on our group gave me her a red scarf......the ranger said "the magic of the trail"!!!!!
John and I on the trail.............

The Appalachian Trail is a 2,175 miles long path along the Mountain Ridge line from Georgia to Maine. It was originally thought of by Brenton MacKeye, who was a employee of the U.S. Forest Service, and felt that there needed to be an escape for people who worked in urban industrial jobs. A place where they could "get away". Many people have set themselves on hiking a segment at a time while others complete the hike in one season. That sure would be a neat goal!

Monday, October 19, 2009


This is Hershey, PA. We lived near here 1971 - 1974. It felt like coming back home. We had some great years here and met some great friends. This lovely town was created by Milton Hershey who developed an interest in chocolate by perfecting the first American recipe for milk chocolate. Convinced that workers are more productive in a comfortable, stimulating environment, he constructed a model community. Do you see the street light covers?

Even the town has a chocolate smell.

Close up street light cover.
Ask Jonell if she recognizes the hospital where she was born. Hershey Hospital is now called Penn State Medical Center at Hershey.

at the Roberto's

Beth look what your Mom made for dinner..... Pork and Sauerkraut....... Yum.........
We are all together once again.

Mike in all his of glory.....

In front of the Roberto's home in Hershey.

We went out to see the play "Murder at Howard Johnson"..... Ask Monette if she say the ending.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Philadelphia, PA

This is a wonderful center in Philadelphia..... It is called the National Constitution Center. This museum is just awesome.... with over 100 interactive exhibits. In this one room called "the Signers Hall" there are life size sculptures of the nation's founders right before signing the Declaration of Independence. As you see, I am considering, as a Representative from California, whether to sign or not to sign. I know the rest of the story.
Yes, Benjamin Franklin was a man of many many
traits.... Did you know he was a fireman?
This was at Independence Hall.....

The Assembly Room has been restored to look as it did when used by the founding fathers in 1775 - 1787. It contains the chair George Washington occupied during the drafting of the Constitution. At the top of the chair is a carving of a sun....... which Benjamin Franklin has been noted to have said ..... "the chair of the rising son."
We are at the home of the Liberty Bell. The bell that announced the creation of a new Nation in 1776.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Tour in New York City

This sculpture is in Battery Park. For three decades, this sculpture stood in the plaza of the World Trade Center. Entitled "The Sphere," it was conceived by artist Fritz Koenig as symbol of world peace. It was damaged during the tragic events of September 11, 2001, but endures as an icon of hope and the indestructible spirit of this country. The Sphere was placed here on March 11, 2002 as a temporary memorial to all who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center.
This eternal flame was ignited on September 11, 2002 in honor of all those who were lost. Their spirit and sacrifice will never be forgotten.

Us at Liberty Island in front of the Statue of Liberty. What memories that visit brought back. Did you know that I had a pre-nup before I would get married?????? Yes........ I mentioned to John that I had promised myself that I was going to see the Statue of Liberty before I married. We saw the beautiful lady in the summer of 1965.

The Brooklyn Bridge, built in 1855.... and New Yorkers are very proud of it.... It is a bridge that is 135 feet above the water , supported by steel cables anchored to two huge granite towers -- a design that would leave boat traffic on the river unimpeded.
From atop of the Empire State Building. Soaring 1,454 feet into the New York sky and even breathtaking on a foggy rainy day. It stands now as the tallest building in New York City..... until the new World Trade Center is completed.
Here we are on Time Square. Can not believe that we are here. What a CITY!!!!!!!!!!!

Birthday Gift from the kids

We made it ...... We are here in New York City. We were given a birthday gifts from our kids and their spouses. A pair of tickets to a Broadway Play. How great and we were so excited...... a Broadway Play.
Yes, this is a City that does not sleep.

We went to dinner at McCormick & Schmick's. I am wearing a gorgeous necklace that Phemie gave me..... Isn't it beautiful. I did not bring any jewelry this beautiful..... I was not expecting anything this grand. How did you know Phemie?
John loved this lobster dinner.
Yes, Yes, Yes....... We saw "Jersey Boys"....... And boy was it grand!!!!!!!! I kept on thinking during the play "Gee, they are great actors.... and boy can they sing..... they sure have a lot of energy". By far the best play we have ever seen. The songs were right out of our youth. Thanks for the wonderful gift, kids.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


First day in New York.... and we are heading for Ellis Island. We are taking the train and then the subway.... boy, can that be intimidating... at least for John and me. Fortunately, we did met several people who were nice enough to help us find our way.

We made it to Ellis Island.....and it gave us some empathy for the new immigrants entering the USA. This island was the processing station for roughly 12 million immigrants between 1892 and 1954. We were anxious to look up John's grandmothers information. And we found a "Elsbeth Tomes entering Ellis Island on November 15, 1905 at the age of 17". We need to do more research but that sound like this was her.

This is the first room the immigrants enter and here they were asked to leave all their belongings. Next they were asked to walk up a 30 step staircase into a big room call the Registration Room. If it was difficult for them to walk up the stairs they were put through extra health tests. All received a eye and hearing test. If they were detain here on the island because of health problems ..... the boat line that brought them over paid the bill. That was nice but still this must have been extremely nerve-racking to all involved.

Fiorello La Guardia, who later became one of America's foremost public servant, was a interpreter (he spoke 3 languages) on Ellis Island from 1907-1910. In 1916, he ran for Congress and from 1934-1946 he served as mayor of New York City. He was well loved and respected by the immigrants as well as his fellow workers.

This is the final staircase that the immigrants took when leaving Ellis Island as United States Citizens. These are the stair that Grandma Galik Knox took in November of 1905. It was wonderful to be here.


Fall in New Hampshire
Is this just unbelievable…… See the color of the doors on the shed… See the wreaths This photo up close is beautiful

When John is driving, you can see what I am doing……… Do you see the car mirror heeheeheeheehee

Pumpkin season is now …… does anyone need to buy a pumpkin???
Even the Canadian Geese are flying South….. And so are we........