Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Petunia at Thousand Islands // New York & Ontario May 2018

Hello all! At the end of May I went out of the US for the first time! It was just a long weekend trip to Canada, but it was a lovely time. Since it was so short I decided to bring a small doll instead, so this is is Petunia if anyone remembers her (although she's not in the best of conditions, sorry)!

These first few pictures are at Boldt Castle, which is actually in New York, and was our stop before going across the border. 

Boldt Castle is an early 20th century castle inspired by ones from the Rhine Valley in Germany and built by George Boldt. He intended the castle to be for his wife, yet she died only one month before it was to be completed on Valentine's Day, and he stopped the building process. It was nearly complete, if not empty, and was never lived in. So it was abandoned for over 70 years until it was restored (and is still being so today) and is now open to the public.

It is located on Heart Island, named so because George Boldt had the island shaped into a heart (quite the Valentine's Day gift, right?). The island is part of the Thousand Islands region on the Saint Lawrence River. 

The inside is mostly a setup of what the castle would be decorated like if it hadn't been abandoned. The top few floors were still in bad shape - they were empty rooms with graffiti all over them. There were a few dates from the 50's, but sadly most were more recently, after the castle was taken over and begun to be renovated. 

View from a bedroom window.

George Boldt's wife, Louise.

The best part of the inside was the glass dome that you could see every time you looked up in the main part of the house!

My favorite part was the grounds. I've been watching a lot of Downton Abbey recently, so it wasn't hard to walk through the gardens and look up at the castle, pretending I lived there in the early 1900s!

Imagine waking up to that view - garden, trees, and river all in one.

The Power House and Clock Tower!

I could easily live here, I think. :)

Me with the Downton Abbey theme song in my head, probably.

This is a beautiful place with a tragic story, one that makes you wonder what it would be like now if everything had gone to plan all those years ago.

After leaving the castle we drove a bit more until we reached Ontario, Canada! We stayed at Gananoque, which is a pleasant little town not too far from the border. 

Me at the Saint Lawrence River again, but this time in a different country!

We spent most of the second day at Charleston Lake Provincial Park. It was beautiful there! So few people and so calming.

I wanted to stay here forever.

The next day we headed home, but first, we had to see Lake Ontario! Now I have officially visited all of the Great Lakes.

It was early morning, so no one but a landscape worker was there.

Even though it was short, I got a quick taste of what Canada could offer, and I loved it very much. I hope I can come back soon!

Here are some observations that I made on my trip and posted on my Instagram:

-Border control was a lot less terrifying than I thought it was going to be (and apparently we had been saying the town we were going to, Gananoque, wrong)
-Bathrooms are called "washrooms"
 -So many solar panels everywhere. I've been seeing a lot more around here which is good, but there were massive ones in the middle of nowhere that looked like they could contact aliens! 
-Landscape is pretty much the same as it is here in PA, but just felt more special because it was new and exciting
-In Gananoque there were little baskets on the light posts filled with bird nest materials that birds could use and it was so cute
-Even when I converted from the metric system to miles, the speed limit on the highway was still a lot lower than it is here (and people obeyed it more, also unlike here lol)
-The old farmhouses are so pretty and remind me of ones I've seen pictures of in the UK
-On a form my mom got for renting a canoe, it said should you damage anything or whatnot, you and your heirs would "Owe the Crown" which which was so exciting and quite dramatic to me 
 -Even though we were only like half an hour north from the border, it was so secluded and peaceful, especially the lake we went to. If it was a lake here there would be people galore, yet this lake was even prettier and hardly a soul around. 

Also! I made a video of our trip that you can watch below if you want. :)

Have you ever been to Canada or want to go? Or do you live there?

Have a lovely rest of the week xx

Friday, May 11, 2018

Theodosia in New York // August 2017

Hello! Last summer I took a trip to New York state with Theodosia, specifically Cooperstown and Ithaca, NY. It's been 9 months since then, but better late than never, right?

These first photos are of Theo in front of an original 1700's church that some of my ancestors went to when they first settled in New York! 

These next ones were taken on the porch of the place we were staying at in Cooperstown, NY. 

Cooperstown is an old town, made famous by the Baseball Hall of Fame that makes its home there. While that didn't interest me, there were still many beautiful places like the Finger Lakes and an art museum. 

I wish you could see it, but the house in the background had the most beautiful garden! I can't wait to have my own home so I can make a big, magical garden, too.

Here is Theo at the Farmers' Museum, an old working farm and replica village made from real buildings from the 1700's.

I hadn't taken doll photos in public in a while and it was a bit scary, honestly! But I needed the practice again.

One of the pretty gardens there.

Then I took some pictures in downtown Cooperstown in a little courtyard area behind the Baseball Hall of Fame. 

It was so peaceful and secluded here.

Me in Cooperstown (with Theo in my backpack!)

We also went to Ithaca, NY, which is a bigger city but there are so many waterfalls around the area (this one was my favorite). We stayed in a more rural area, but we did explore the city for a day.

One of my favorite places in Ithaca was the Cornell University Library, which was so amazing! This picture is terrible, but I'll have one of me in the library below.

Lastly, Theo came to explore some waterfalls with me! This was the only one I could take pictures with her in it because the rest were too busy, but I like how these came out at least.

This waterfall is called Buttermilk Falls.

I have plenty of travel plans for the future, so hopefully I can post about those not too long after I go on them, unlike this trip! :)

Have a good weekend xx

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Mona at Gettysburg // Autumn 2017

Hello! In October of last year I went back to Gettysburg for the second time. You may remember Elisabeth's trip to Gettysburg back in 2014, and that was when I still used my point and shoot camera! So I brought Mona along this time, and even though you may not be able to tell she's at Gettysburg from these photos, I took a few in a quiet spot.

Between five hundred and one thousand women disguised themselves as men and enlisted in the Union and Confederate armies, according to Bobbi Miller, who wrote The Girls of Gettysburg (a good read!). "Only the letters written by three women soldiers have been found. Diaries, if any existed, have not survived. Only two women soldiers, Sarah Edmonds and Loretta Janeta Velazquez, published their memoirs after the war." Imagine all the heroines that history never tells of!

"The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater."
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

Have a great rest of the week! xx
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