Thursday, December 19, 2013

Nights of a Thousand Candles

For three weekends in December, Brookgreen Gardens hosts this special event highlighting the gardens all aglow from candles and lights.  All of the 1,000 candles are light be hand each night of the event which is quite impressive.  Here are some of the photos from our 3 hour walk through the gardens.  We definitely look forward to returning in the spring when the flowers are in bloom!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Vizcaya Museum & Gardens: A Step Back in Time

A nice respite on any visit to Miami is Vizcaya Museum & Gardens.
James Deering wanted to create a winter home that was reminiscent an Italian villa.  With Vizcaya, he definitely achieved the goal.  Walking through the rooms, it felt like Vizcaya had been in Miami for hundreds of years…you actually don’t even feel like you’re in Miami let alone the US. 

It took over a decade to complete Vizcaya.  They began building in 1910 and completed it in 1922.  Unlike most of his peers, Deering hired three little known designers to help him create his estate.  Paul Chalfin provided artistic oversight, Francis Burrall Hoffman, Jr. brought professional knowledge of architecture and Diego Suarez provided landscape architecture expertise.   Sadly, Deering was only able to enjoy the finished vision for three years as he died in 1925. 
We were not allowed to take photos inside the house but here are a few of the grounds.


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Woodinville Wine Country Tour

While there are over 600 wineries in Washington, they are located in Eastern Washington...about 3 hours from Seattle.  The tour of Woodinville was very different from a tour of Napa or Sonoma.  When touring Woodinville, you actually tour the tasting rooms of the different wineries. 
The only vineyard we saw was at Chateau Ste. Michelle but it was really just a show vineyard.  We did get a good overview of the Washington wine making program and did get see the bottling process at Chateau Ste. Michelle.
Now don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the tastings at all 4 tasting rooms (tasted 22 different wines)!  Just wanted to pass on what to expect when touring Woodinville Wine Country to everyone.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

We Found Nemo at the Seattle Aquarium!

After the very active day yesterday, we decided to take it a little slower today and just visited the Seattle Aquarium.  We took the Light Rail in from our hotel and hopped on the Emerald City Trolley at Westlake and headed to the waterfront.
Seattle is a city with public art all over the city.  Here are a few of the pieces we passed on our way to the waterfront.

After lunch at the Crab Pot on the waterfront, we headed to the Seattle Aquarium. This is a great aquarium with lots of interactive stations...I touched a starfish and a couple sea anemones.  Not being too fond of weird textures, it was definitely an experience for me!
In their Life of a Drifter exhibit, jelly fish float in a circle as you walk through a giant loop.  Funny how something that looks so touchable can hurt so much.
The aquarium has a Giant Pacific Octopus and its one of the
top exhibits so getting up close and personal was a little challenging.
A face only a mother could love
When my favorite 2 1/2 year old comes to my house, we watch "Finding Nemo" so of course we had to head to the Pacific Coral Reef exhibit.  After going all through the exhibit and looking all over the reef for the little clown fish, we finally found him.  But first, here's some of the others we saw.

Dori...we're getting closer!
Finally found the little guy..Nemo!
Outside we found the Harbor Seals lounging in the sun.  We must have sat there for 30 minutes watching them.  They were probably thinking..."are you crazy humans going to sit there all day watch us do nothing?"