Winterthur Museum and Gardens, Delaware

I’m working on a post about my whirlwind visit to the Finger Lakes of New York last week, but today’s post is about Winterthur and the drive across PA last Sunday.

After Mom’s meetings in Harrisburg on Friday (during which I toured the capitol and state museum), and our foray into family history at the Conrad Weiser Homestead on Saturday, we sailed farther east and visited the Winterthur Museum and Gardens in Delaware.

Mom went to Winterthur a few years ago, and she knew I would love the house and gardens, so we scheduled a noon introductory tour. I had expected to learn a little more about the house than the items inside it, but for an introductory tour, it certainly gave me a lot to look at.

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A Capitol Museum

Along with a tour of the capitol building, I also wanted to visit St. Patrick’s, the State Museum, and the State Library. Unfortunately, I have now learned never to trust anything the internet claims about opening hours in the capital of the Commonwealth, because when I went to the library on Saturday morning, I couldn’t get in. But St. Patrick’s was beautiful, and the museum was well worth the price of admission (which was $6 with my AAA discount).

The lady at the desk told me to start at the top of the museum where the animals and dinosaurs are because they’re everyone’s favorites, and I smiled politely but thought, “That sounds kind of boring.” Instead, I turned absolutely 6 years old when I walked into the room, which was quiet, empty, and alive. I was sure everything I saw was going to follow me around and attack the moment I turned my back.

Augh! The dinosaur is going to get me! It's aliiiiive!

Augh! The dinosaur is going to get me! It’s aliiiiive!

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A Capitol Tour

I grew up in Pennsylvania and went to college near Harrisburg, and yet I never made it to the capitol building until this past weekend. After spending so much time in and around the Wisconsin capitol building while living in Madison, I had high expectations for Harrisburg—none of which were met.

Just so that we’re on the same page, here were some of my expectations after living in Madison:

  • View of the city from the rotunda.
  • Lively surrounding area (shops, restaurants, etc.) outside the building.
  • Bright and friendly inside the building.

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Conrad Weiser Homestead

I’m sure some people learn about their genealogy and find they’re descendants of famous people. My mom has not had that experience. The closest we come to famous ancestors is Conrad Weiser, the brother of an ancestor and an interpreter between the colonists and Native Americans of 18th-century Pennsylvania.

Beautiful day for wandering around outside.

Beautiful day for wandering around outside.

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Bucs vs. Cubs

Growing up, I heard the Pirates referred to as the Bucs or Buccos more often than as the Pirates, so it was especially fun to my wordplay-loving brain when I went to their game against the Cubs. BUC/CUB—it’s like the teams were made to play each other.

So the game ended disappointingly, who cares. The point is I got to watch it with two of my best friends in the best seats I’ve ever had at PNC Park.

Let's Go Bucs!

Let’s Go Bucs! I wore a bandana and hoop earrings since I don’t have a Pirates shirt.

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Somerset Mountain Craft Days

I’ve been hearing about Mountain Craft Days for years. My BeFF‘s family has a long-standing joke about how the event doesn’t actually exist, thanks to her mom driving the kids around for hours trying to find it a few years in a row. With that background going through my head, I was sure I’d have trouble finding it, but the signage was excellent and I made it in good time.

I’m gonna interrupt myself here to say how much I missed driving these mountain roads when I was living in Wisconsin! It’s so cool to have your ears popping when driving up and down steep hills—a sensation I’ve until recently only been able to experience in an airplane. What a great aspect of the state!

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Learning the Ropes

I’ve been traveling! Little trips, yes, but travels nonetheless. Which means it’s time for me to learn the ropes. How do I balance the travel and fun with the writing about it? I guess I’ll find out if I’m going to make a thing out of this blog, eh?

Here’s a taste of what I’ve been up to:

  • Somerset Mountain Craft Days
  • Pirates game vs. Cubs at PNC Park (Pittsburgh)
  • Harrisburg capitol and museum tour
  • Conrad Weiser Homestead in Berks County, PA
  • Winterthur Museum and Gardens in Delaware

I plan to write a post about each of these, but they won’t be all at the same time, especially because tomorrow we leave for yet another brief adventure. What is it with September and the sudden spontaneous travel ideas? I love it!

Today’s plan: publish my post about Mountain Craft Days, air out the camping equipment, and pick up my car from its very first PA state vehicle inspection.

In other news: I started a Facebook page for my blog.

Local Travels

Get excited, people! I’m going to the Somerset County Mountain Craft Days this weekend! Don’t let the photo on the homepage of the bonnetted lady fool you—well, actually, that’s exactly what it’ll be like. So it’s lucky for me that I like learning about how they did things in Ye Olde Pennsylvania.

But primarily, I’m just excited to see local artisans and craftspeople. It was at this time last year that my mom met her bobbin lace teacher, and as an avid knitter, I love to browse the local fare. My mom says there are metalworks, too, and let’s be honest, who doesn’t love watching an ironsmith make sparks on an anvil?

I’ll let you know what it’s like once I’ve gone, but this is the first real travely thing I’ve done since driving here from Wisconsin. Rest assured: I have a few more things planned over the next few weeks and will be sure to post about them as they go.

In health news: I’m two pounds and one inch down over the past two weeks! We had a rainstorm last night that’s really made the temperature drop, so I’ve upped my hot tea consumption. Some might call it an addiction. When can I get back to Scotland? 🙂

Living With Mom

In the movie Failure to Launch (which I don’t remember really liking all that much), the main character Tripp and his friends Ace and Demo each live with their parents. It’s the point of the movie—they’ve “failed to launch” into their own independent lives—and Tripp’s parents hire someone to seduce Tripp out of the house and into adulthood.

The part I did like about the movie was near the end, one of the emotional climaxes, when Ace admits he owns the house where he grew up (bought it from his mom) and has the basement tricked out in ultra-tech super-modern style. And when Ace sums up Demo—the guy who’s always rock-climbing and traveling—like this:

Bradley Cooper

And Demo, here, has chosen the life of a wanderer. I mean, sure, he technically still lives at home, but his permanent address is in his heart.

(Oh yeah, I forgot to mention Demo is played by Bradley Cooper. Which was arguably the best part of the movie.)

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