Friday, January 15

Smithsonian of American History: Part Two

On the last day of our vacation, we had a little time left after visiting the Smithsonian of Natural History and decided to go back to the Smithsonian of American History, which is right next door.

When we entered the section we hadn't view yet, we saw this beautiful painting. Enlarge for a better look.
The boys were surprised by this primitive sewing machine. Notice the trade cards on the right. I was enthralled with those. Very interesting.

A peddler's wagon. We looked around a bit more in this area, but we had seen part of it on our previous visit, so we decided to move on.

I was very interested in the American Black History section of the museum. We saw photos of Martin Luther King and JFK. I told the boys that I was about Brandon's age when JFK was assassinated and I also well remember the assassination of Martin Luther King. There was a teenage African-American girl in that area and she asked couldn't believe that I could remember this. She asked me several questions and I enjoyed talking to her. I think she thought I must be ancient to have lived when these great men were assassinated.

It was all very interesting and the boys learned a lot here. We spend quite a bit of time in this area.
A slave child in her bedroom. The boys couldn't believe this. Of course they've been brought up in an era where all the modern conveniences are available and also in a "I need it now" mentality.
They saw corn husk brooms and read a lot about slavery. I think it was a wake-up call for them. Neither of them could understand the reason why anyone would want to own another human being. I told them it was because slaves were free labor and the slaveowners could make bigger other words MONEY.
More reading and a few more lessons.
As we left the museum, the boys wanted me to take a photo of some of the vintage items. It doesn't seem like this guy would be vintage. LOL I did think the Disney items were. They were from way back and we enjoyed seeing those as well.
We certainly enjoyed our trip and learned a lot. I do have a few photos of the drive home and will post some of those another day. I hope you've enjoyed coming along with us to Washington.

Thursday, January 14

Show and Tell Friday

While we were in the US, I bought myself this beautiful Easter teapot set. It is the tea pot, cream and sugar and the tray.
I also bought salt and pepper shakers, the spoon holder and a small dish to match. I think it is so pretty and I really don't have a lot of Easter decorations.

This is the tray that the tea pot and cream and sugar sets on, or maybe I'll use the tray for Easter snacks.
I don't often buy anything to bring back with me. The holiday is usually enough but I couldn't resist this beautiful set and the price was reasonable. I know I will enjoy it.

If you would like to take part in Show and Tell, please drop by and visit Cindy at My Romantic Home.

Wednesday, January 13

Smithsonian Museum of Natural History: Part Two

On Wednesday morning of our trip, we went to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History in order to see all we had missed on our previous visit. This was the one place that Jordan really wanted to spend some time.
After going through security, the first thing we saw was a giant dinosaur.
And this beautiful elephant.

The Christmas tree in this museum. There were trees in every museum that we went to.

Jordan loved this T-Rex. He has a desire to be a palentologist...a dinosaur scientist.

A Triceratops, another of his favourites.

He spent a lot of time examining this exhibit.

Another T-Rex.

The boys in front of a dinosaur skull. It was huge.

A beautiful diorama.

Prehistoric sea creatures.

And another...

Skeleton of a giant sea turtle.

More sea creatures.

After that we moved to another section of the museum and saw this giant termite hill. It was huge.

Another diorama.

As we moved into the mammal section, we looked up and saw this tiger about to pounce. The boys loved it.

A silverback gorilla.

Beautiful male lion.

A giraffe, drinking. This was awesome.

A hippo.

The biggest porcupine I've ever seen. When my grandparents moved 2 hours north of here when I was 12, porcupines were often spotted in the pine tree in front of the farmhouse. None so big as this one though.

Beautiful display of a doe and her fawn. I think this was my favourite.
Next to the US Horticultural Building, this was Brandon's favourite museum. Of course, it was Jordan's favourite. After this we had a bit of time left, so decided to go back to the American History Museum. I will post photos from that visit tomorrow if blogger will cooperate.

Tuesday, January 12

Down Memory Lane

Well, I was going to post more photos of the Museum of Natural History in Washington, but once again blogger isn't being agreeable and wouldn't let me upload photos. So let's take a walk down Memory Lane.

On the weekend, the local paper had an article on the bakeries that were in town in the 1950s. McHutchions was on the main street, two blocks away from downtown. I remember the smell of baking bread as I walked down the street when I was a teenager. If I had a few cents in my pocket, it would draw me in to browse over the large selection of cookies, candies, cakes and other delicious bake goods. Often I would chose a date square and be on my way.

When I was younger, Dad would bring Mom, my younger sister and I to town on the odd Saturday morning and we would wait at Uncle Jim's or Aunt Theresa's for the stores to open at 9am. We would browse Kresge's, the Metropolitan and Woolworth's.

Not far from Woolworth's stood the White Bakery. They handed rainbow sugar cookies out to children and we would coax Mom to stop in so we could get our treat. Those cookies would melt in your mouth. I can still remember how they tasted.

Today, there is only two bakeries in town. One is at the far end of the city and the one that is near us isn't anything like the bakeries of the 1950s. There is no smell of baking bread, but there are some nice baked goods on display. About twice a year I stop in to get a small treat, but it just isn't the same.

Do you remember going to the bakery when you were young? If so, I'd enjoy hearing about your experience.

Monday, January 11

The Woman in the Mirror

Tonight at Writer's Circle, we did a little exercise about what we saw in the mirror. This is my story.

When I look at the woman in the mirror, I have a difficult time believing she is really me. When did the lines, wrinkles and crow's feet begin to show? Something I most definitely missed until they had completely taken over.

I have difficulty comprehending where all the years have gone. It's like I'm still young and that woman in the mirror is my grandmother. For in my mind, I am young. This woman cannot be me.

But, as I look back over the years and reminisce about all that has taken place in my life, I have to admit that the years have sped by so quickly that they seem to be blurred together. Yes, that woman in the mirror is me, but I will continue to be young in mind and spirit, if not in outer appearance.
The End

If you care to join in and write a short version of who you see when you look in the mirror, I would be delighted. If you do participate, be sure to let me know.
I will continue with our Washington trip soon.

Sunday, January 10

Some Winter Beauty

The boys came over today. It was a beautiful winter day, though a bit chilly. It was 18 Celsius or, for my US friends, minus 7. The sun was shining and there was little wind, so we picked Mom up and headed to LaSalle Park in Burlington.
This is what we saw when we first arrived. Lots of Mallard ducks in this area and quite a few seagulls.

The harbour was frozen and the sky was a beautiful blue.
Mute (orange bill) and Trumpeter (black bill) swans were plentiful down the path at the feeding area.

Three Canadian geese were making their way toward the feeding area. It looked like they were walking on water, but it is really ice.

The water was open at the feeding area. A man who was feeding the swans said that the birds weigh between 30 and 40 lbs.

Canada geese, Mallard ducks and swans all together at the feeding area.

A beautiful Mute swan.

One of the volunteers dishing out corn for all the waterfowl.
We enjoyed the day, though the walk back to the car was a bit chilly. We were facing into the wind, but what better way to enjoy a beautiful winter day?

On the trip to the Marina, we saw a Cooper's hawk at the side of the road. He was gorgeous. After I dropped the boys off, I drove along the river and saw an otter. That was a surprise. I didn't realize otters lived this far south. I know we have them in northern Ontario. Interesting day.