28 January 2016

January Highlights- A Quick Trip to NYC and a BIG Snowstorm

In January Kent spent a week with his family out in Washington.  He didn't take any pictures, so I don't have any to post here.

. While he was out of town, I decided to take a spur-of-the-moment trip to New York City. I checked the weather and saw that it was supposed to be fairly mild, so I asked a friend if she wanted to join me. We took the DC to NY bus on a Thursday morning and came home on Friday evening.
I've been to NYC three times now, and there's always somewhre I haven't had the chance to see yet. 

On this trip I wanted to go to the United Nations Headquarters Building. After we dropped off our suitcases at our hotel we took the subway there. 
We had to get a pass and go through security to get into UN compound. The sculpture below was before we entered the main building.
We were able to go on a tour, which took us through many of the council and large meeting rooms.

I thought this Norman Rockwell painting was neat.
We saw this view of the Chrysler building from the United Nations.
After our tour of the UN, we had dinner at a cafeteria style restaurant and then walked to the theater district to see "Finding Neverland". I'd heard it was very good and was excited to see it.
I was disappointed that neither of the big name stars were performing on the night we attended, but I was pleasantly surprised by how well the understudies did. The play itself was very enjoyable, with great acting and great music. I loved it.
The next day we went to the 9/11 memorial and museum. This is a view of the new World Trade Center Tower.
Below is part of the memorial. When I went to it before it was night time, so it was nice to see it in the daytime.
The museum was very well done with lots of recordings, videos and first person accounts from all of the areas that were affected by 9/11, not just New York City.
It's hard to believe it's been 15 years since that day.
We spent most of the day in the museum, then checked out of the hotel and got on the bus back to Virginia.
On the weekend starting January 22nd, we had our biggest snowfall of the winter.
It started falling Friday afternoon and continued through Saturday evening.
By the time it stopped it had snowed almost eighteen inches.
Kent and I both took turns shoveling all that deep and heavy snow.
Because it was windy, the snow blew up onto our porch, even though it's covered.
In this picture I was trying to capture the snow on my "Let it Snow" sign. Very appropriate!
The snow on our back deck also drifted up against the door, but was packed tightly enough that it didn't fall into the house when I opened the door to take a picture of how deep it was.
A view of our back deck and back yard.
Every time we have one of these big snowstorms we talk about how we're too old to be out shoveling snow, and that we should get a snowblower.
The snow also blew into our newspaper box. Kent pulled that chunk of snow out of it.
Church was cancelled that Sunday and the schools were closed for over a week. The county never came down our road to plow us out, but the men in the neighborhood who had snowblowers cleared our road so we could drive out by Tuesday.

05 January 2016

After-Christmas Trip to Pennsylvania and Delaware

I'd heard that Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania had a fabulous Christmas lights display, so we went up there after Christmas to see it.
Longwood Gardens advertises itself as one of the best gardens in the country. We're anxious to go  again in the summer to see the flowers in bloom.
 We arrived while it was still light, and walked around the gardens to get the lay of the land before it got dark. The house below was empty and people could walk around inside and look out over the park.
We went to see some indoor displays at a conservatory, with many lovely Christmas trees and flowers.

 There were free organ concerts every hour, so we attended one as we waited for it to get dark outside.
Here you can see it's finally getting dark.
They had some dancing fountains that changed colors....
and shot up and down to Christmas carols.
 We got a bit chilly as we were walking around and wished we'd dressed more warmly.
 The photo below was taken of some trees that were lit up out on a pond, so you can see the reflection in the water.
 Two more photos of the lights.
 It's really hard to get pictures that do justice to the beauty of the lights.
 We spent the night in Pennsylvania, then got up early the next day and drove to Delaware (only about 15 minutes away).
 In Delaware we toured a DuPont Mansion called Nemours.
We weren't allowed to take pictures of the inside of the mansion, but here's the entrance.
 Here's a view looking out to the gardens.
 This was also in the gardens.
 The DuPonts had an impressive collection of vintage cars, including a Rolls Royce, and we were allowed to take pictures of them.
We had a fun time; it was a great way to wrap up the Christmas season.