Armchair Traveler ~ US National Parks ~ Photos

One of my favorite Armchair Traveler books contains gorgeous photos and essays about many of the incredible US National Parks. When I browse the book I remember past journeys (my favorites include Denali, Glacier, Mt Rushmore, Shenandoah and the Grand Canyon) and plan new adventures (Grand Teton, Yosemite, Crater Lake are on my list). 

In addition to books and maps about various National Parks, there is a wealth of information on line: https://www.nps.gov/index.htm  Remember when you plan your trip to a National Park, some are far more crowded than others and going in spring or fall is less crowded than the summer months.

Each park is very special and unique. While there are travelers whose goal is to journey to each park, there are others (like me) who prefer to return to a favorite park. I find that each time, I discover new vistas.

Be creative and have fun as you “armchair travel” using photo books, guidebooks and online sites. You could well be planning your next journey.

Take the time to put the camera away and gaze in wonder at what’s there in front of you ~ Erick Widman

One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things ~ Henry Miller

Savor your journeys… real, imagined or virtual, near or far.

Quotes ~ By the 4 US Presidents Sculptured on Mt Rushmore ~ Photos

Last year, I traveled to awe inspiring Mt Rushmore in South Dakota,  which is a fabulous area to visit (including the nearby Crazy Horse Memorial, Badlands National Park and the SD Air and Space Museum). This year, the Independence Day fireworks celebration should be spectacular.

Savor your journeys… real, imagined or virtual, near or far.

George Washington: Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience ~ Human happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected ~ Strive not with your superiors in argument, but always submit your judgment to others with modesty ~ Perseverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.

Thomas Jefferson: Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you ~ Honesty is the first chapter of the book wisdom ~ The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do ~ On matters of style, swim with the current, on matters of principle, stand like a rock.

Theodore Roosevelt: Do what you can, with what you have, where you are ~ Believe you can and you’re halfway there ~ People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care ~ Knowing what’s right doesn’t mean much unless you do what’s right.

Abraham Lincoln: I will prepare and some day my chance will come ~ And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years ~ Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed, is more important than any other one thing ~ You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.

 

 

From May 2019:

Road Trip: Western Washington to Mt Rushmore ….. Mt Rushmore National Memorial, Keystone, South Dakota

 

 

Quotes ~ France ~ Photos

We’ll always have Paris ~ Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca

I wanted to get far away from those who believed in cruelty, so then I went to France, a land of true freedom, democracy, equality and fraternity. ~ Josephine Baker

America is my country and Paris is my hometown. ~ Gertrude Stein

Everything ends this way in France ~ everything. Weddings, christenings, duels, burials, swindlings, diplomatic affairs ~ everything is a pretext for a good dinner. ~ French playwright Jean Anouilh

France has the only two things towards which we drift as we grow older – intelligence and manners. ~ F. Scott Fitzgerald

If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast ~ Ernest Hemingway

Just add three letters to Paris, and you have paradise ~ Jules Renard

A walk in Paris will provide lessons in history, beauty, and the point of life ~ Thomas Jefferson

Paris is always a good idea. ~ Audrey Hepburn

Quotes ~ Italy ~ Photos

You may have the universe if I may have Italy. ~ Giuseppe Verdi

Italy, and the spring and first love all together should suffice to make the gloomiest person happy. ~ Bertrand Russell

 The Creator made Italy by designs from Michelangelo. ~ Mark Twain

 Italy is a dream that keeps returning for the rest of your life. ~ Anna Akhmatova

I love places that have an incredible history. I love the Italian way of life. I love the food. I love the people. I love the attitudes of Italians. ~ Elton John

Venice, it’s temples and palaces did seem like fabrics of enchantment piled to heaven. ~ Percy Bysshe Shelley

Venice is like eating an entire box of chocolate liqueurs in one go. ~ Truman Capote

Addendum ~ Photos ~ Gig Harbor, WA ~ May 2020 ~ A Beautiful Afternoon

It rained this morning, but cleared in the afternoon. Gig Harbor is beautiful when it’s sunny, even when Mt. Rainier is not visible. Today I walked a different part of the harbor than on the week-end. Very glad for the variety ….

I love photography and think of it as trying to capture a moment or the perfect shot. Photos are a fabulous way to remember people, events and special places.

Savor your journeys … past, present and future … real and imagined, near and far.

 

Photos ~ Gig Harbor, Washington ~ May 2020

Welcome to my blog ….

 

Photos ~ Gig Harbor, Washington ~ May 2020

This past week-end was beautiful ~ sunny and clear ~ in the 80s. When we have days like this in the Pacific Northwest (known for drizzle, gray skies ~ which we will have most of this week) we take advantage!  There were many of us walking about Gig Harbor, soaking up the sun. Local restaurants were open for take-out and were doing a brisk business, which was great to see. 

I ordered take-out from a favorite restaurant, Devoted Kiss Café. Their Veggie Wrap is terrific and I am eagerly looking forward to their re-opening (no date set yet!) . 

On a clear day, you can see Mt Rainier in the distance ~ always spectacular.

Savor your journeys … past, present and future … real and imagined, near and far.

Photos ~ Gig Harbor, Washington ~ April 2020

Yesterday was a gorgeous, sunny day in Gig Harbor, perfect to walk about. On a clear day, you can see Mt Rainier in the distance ~ always spectacular.

I ordered take-out from a favorite restaurant, Devoted Kiss Café. Their Mediterranean Quiche is fabulous and I am eagerly looking forward to their re-opening. 

Spring is in the air – time for re-awakening.

Savor your journeys … past, present and future … real and imagined, near and far.

Photos ~ Biltmore, Asheville, NC

Enjoy my photos of a favorite place: gorgeous Biltmore. Check out the two links at the bottom of the photos for more information. And, should you journey to the Asheville, NC area, I highly recommend visiting this historic chateau.

Savor your journeys… real and imagined, near or far.

Armchair Traveler ~ Biltmore ~ Cookbook

Fall in the Smoky’s

Armchair Traveler ~ Biltmore ~ Cookbook

There are several former residences in the United States that are memorable places to visit: The Hearst Castle in San Simeon, CA, The Breakers in Newport, RI and Biltmore in Asheville, NC. I’ve visited each and each is truly magnificent. They transport you to another era and are terrific travel destinations.

Several years ago, I vacationed in the Asheville area and visited Biltmore. It was designed to be a self-sufficient estate, with a working farm and beautiful park and woods. In addition to touring the George Vanderbilt home (completed in 1895) and gardens, I dined at several wonderful restaurants:

  • Cedric’s Tavern is a must visit with a very good menu and outdoor seating. Hint: save room for dessert.
  • Deerpark Restaurant is another must visit if you relish a fabulous, mouth-watering buffet. From egg dishes to appetizers, soups, salads to entrees and incredible desserts. It is THE ideal place to enjoy a leisurely brunch.

Both the beautiful Tour Guide book and the “Biltmore, Our Table to Yours, Cookbook” bring back many great memories of this historic treasure. The cookbook has gorgeous photos, not only of the dishes but also of the home interior. Should you visit, you will also want to go to Biltmore’s winery tasting room. Enjoy!

Next post, I’ll share some photos of the fabulous gardens and home exterior.

When being an armchair traveler, do not limit yourself to a country or city or ethnic food. Think of certain places you’ve always wanted to explore. Check on-line for menu ideas. Dress the part as you dine. Read about the place. Perhaps Versailles? A Castle in Germany? A Village in Nepal? Or Biltmore?

Most important, enjoy planning and be inventive as you “journey” to a favorite spot … even if for now, it is but a dream.

Savor your journeys… real and imagined, near or far.

Fall in the Smoky’s