Spring 2014…Bring it on ….with Cherry Blossoms!

Cherry Blossoms anyone…..   everyone….



The plantings of (2,000) cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or “Sakura,” is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.

This and the rest of this very interesting story from:  http://www.nps.gov/cherry/cherry-blossom-history.htm  

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Believe it or not, my daughter Elizabeth and I thought we were sneaking down to the tidal basin ahead of the crowd at the crack of dawn, 7ish on Sunday morning.  You can only imagine the numbers of people during the day!

Camera ready…..


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Denny and Carrie – The places they’ll go, the stories they’ll tell…Boating on the Chesapeake….



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Did you know……

They (the guards at the tomb of the unknown soldier) must commit 2 years of life to guard the tomb, live in a barracks under the tomb, and cannot drink any alcohol on or off duty FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES. They cannot swear in public FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES and cannot disgrace the uniform {fighting} or the tomb in any way.

After TWO YEARS, the guard is given a wreath pin that is worn on their lapel signifying they served as guard of the tomb. There are only 400 presently worn. The guard must obey these rules for the rest of their lives or give up the wreath pin.




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The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception is the largest Roman Catholic church in the United States and North America, and is one of the ten largest churches in the world.

Byzantine-Romanesque in style, its massive, one-of-a-kind superstructure is home to over 70 chapels and oratories that relate to the peoples, cultures and traditions that are the fabric of the Catholic faith and the mosaic of our great nation. The Basilica also houses the largest collection of contemporary ecclesiastical art on earth..



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Weekend Getaway – NYC for the Armory Show

Steppin’ Out…..E 89th St. at 2nd
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Metro to Downtown……


Sing your heart out on the High Line…..


The High Line is a 1-mile…New York City linear park built on a 1.45-mile …section of the elevated former New York Central Railroad spur called the West Side Line, which runs along the lower west side of Manhattan; it has been redesigned and planted as an aerial greenway. A similar project in Paris, the 3-mile, Promenade plantée, completed in 1993, was the inspiration for this project. The High Line currently runs from Gansevoort Street, three blocks below West 14th Street, in the Meatpacking District, to 30th Street, through the neighborhood of Chelsea to north of the West Side Yard, near the former connection with the Amtrak-operated Empire Connection, as well as just southeast of the Javits Convention Center.    




The Armory Show … the Grandest Art Show of them all…..



FORBES’ Guide To New York’s Largest Art Fair, The Armory Show 2014

New York’s largest art fair, The Armory Show, features modern and contemporary art from 205 galleries representing 26 different countries. Thousands throng to Pier 92 to browse, buy — and be seen. Here’s how to survive one of the busiest weekends in the art world’s calendar, and if you can’t make it in person, how to experience the show virtually.


To my dear son, Denny, who, in college, when life is void of any housekeeping at all, had the first Zomba ever, in spite of himself…….you were just one step shy of rich and famous…..opportunity missed…..?

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Back in Focus, a round, robotic vacuum cleaner was swerving around the booth belonging to Hong Kong-based Gallery Exit. Like a cross between a household appliance and a horseshoe crab, it stubbornly was butting against gray spiky balls scattered around the booth. They were enlarged dust particles, explained dealer Arianna Gellini, but they were meant to evoke explosive mines. “He was interested in creating a stage and creating an environment between a domestic setting and a war zone,” she said of the artist, Nadim Abbas, who was born in Hong Kong. The company that makes the droid-like vacuums reportedly also makes military supplies. 


Does this look familiar?


Chris Jordan – “Caps Seurat” (2011)

This rework of Seurat’s pointillist masterpiece depicts 400,000 plastic bottle caps, equal to the average number of plastic bottles consumed in the U.S. every minute. The digital pigment print is selling for $16,000

You have to do everything for the first time just to figure it out.   The size of the crowd, the length of the line to get in (a security guard let daughter Margaret and I in using a back elevator) and the excitement around this show, was overwhelming.  I’m afraid I was so distracted from people watching, that I’m not sure how much I learned about art??  Next time…..

Finally…..’tini time….!

What are the chances….that a favorite place for martinis is RIGHT next door to the brown cup…?  I love New York!

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And..what are the chances that over our delightful visit at the bar, while enjoying our perfect extra dry vodka martinis,  I came to realize that my first magical trip to NY, as the Director of Promotions for the Denver Nuggets Basketball Club, took me to this very place, where I sat next to the one and only Charles Nelson Reilly, no less……ha!

Reviving Elaine’s Without Elaine..

The swanky canopy will be out front again at 1703 Second Avenue at 88th Street, braving East River winds with new fabric popping on the original frame…..

… the Writing Room, … the former spot of one of the nation’s most celebrated A-list hangouts. It was a 48-year-long party, from 1963 until the final nose-dive in 2011, nearly six months after the restaurant’s formidable proprietor, Elaine Kaufman, died at age 81.



The closing of Elaine’s represented the end of not just a restaurant but of something more — an era of the city when writers were as famous as movie stars, when the goings-on at a little spot at 1703 Second Avenue just north of 88th Street became the stuff of legend, or at least headlines.


Can’t leave New York without a little food for the soul…a quick trip to Central Park ……..

Did you know that Central Park has 36 Arches?  No two are alike and each is more intriguing and beautiful than the next.  They were designed to separate the pedestrian, carriage and horse riding traffic.

If you are reading this on a tablet at a time when you have some leisure, this is a delightful description full of interesting information.  New York City’s Central Park by Louise Slavicek


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Cleveland Neighborhoods…… Clifton Park..Winter in the Magic Kingdom

Circa 1870 and into the early 1900s,  Euclid Ave was known as Millionaire’s Row.  The wealthy industrialist residents built summer homes in the first suburb west of Cleveland on the lake and called it Clifton Park.  They created a unique charter delegating ownership of a private shared common area called Clifton Beach.  It’s a gem.  It’s also a secret so don’t tell anyone!



Where the Rocky River meets Lake Erie….


Eliot Ness taught my husband Denny and this brother John how to swim, right here at Clifton Beach.  This was the home of Eliot Ness.  It was big, rectangular and painted black for years before it was so elegantly remodeled by the current owner.

In December of 1935, Cleveland’s Mayor Harold Burton recruited Eliot Ness to serve as the city’s new Safety Director. That very year, Cleveland was the fifth largest metro area in the nation, and was considered to be the most dangerous city in the United States. Ness went on to spearhead a campaign that nearly eliminated corruption in the police department, brought the fire department up to modern standards, and instituted the latest traffic technologies, bringing national safety awards to Cleveland by 1939. He was also faced with one of the strangest serial murder cases in all of U.S. history.

taken from:  http://www.clevelandpolicemuseum.org/collections/eliotness.html

2-2014-Clifton-Park-Winter-25664---Version-2This is our home.  It was the childhood home of Vernon and Gordon Stouffer of Stouffer foods.  My father in law played with them in this house when he was a child.  What a privilege it has been to raise our children in this sentimental space.

Legend has it that Mrs. Stouffer made her apple pies in our kitchen, took them on the trolley car downtown to their restaurant and ..the rest is history.



Washington DC on a crisp Thanksgiving morning…


United States Botanic Garden..all ready for the Holidays!


The Garden Court in the entrance to the Gardens has a collection of representations of National buildings and monuments.  They are spectacular and all crafted from more than 70 different plant parts and pieces.  Each building’s complexity takes hundreds of hours to complete bringing gingerbread house traditions to a whole new level.

These incredible wonderful holiday delights are made of over 70 different kinds of plant material including pine cone scales, willow, screw pods, grapevine tendrils and acorn and acorn caps.  What a Holiday treat!


Annapolis…all about the Inns, the Bay and the Boats

Maybe we lucked out, perhaps it was off season, as we approached Annapolis we called the Inns of Annapolis and got a reservation at what turned out to be one of a our favorite finds.. a room at the inn…it was comfortable, charming, spacious and in a perfect location….Fall-2013,-Princeton,-Annapolis,-DC-24628---Version-2




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Princeton …. all about Arches and Ivy and Stone

Did you know….Woodrow Wilson, James Madison, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Jimmy Stewart, Donald Rumsfeld, Bill Bradley, Steve Forbes, Queen Noor of Jordan, Ralph Nader, Meg Whitman, Michelle Obama, Jeff Bezos, David Petraeus, Brook Shields, and Sonia Sotomayor are all Princeton alum?


Loaded with tradition and history….

Nassau Hall

Nassau Hall was, at the time of its completion in 1756, the largest stone building in the colonies. It was much admired and provided the inspiration for other college buildings, notably Hollis Hall at Harvard, University Hall at Brown, Dartmouth Hall at Dartmouth, and Queens Hall at Rutgers.

“We do everything in the plainest and cheapest manner, as far as is consistent with Decency and Convenience, having no superfluous Ornaments,” President Aaron Burr, Sr., wrote a benefactor in Scotland, and this was the guiding principle in the design of Nassau Hall. The trustee minutes mention a plan by William Worth, a local stonemason, and another plan by Dr. William Shippen of Philadelphia and Robert Smith, a carpenter-architect who later designed Carpenter’s Hall in Philadelphia. No doubt Dr. Shippen contributed to the design of the building, as William Worth may have done in addition to the considerable contribution he made to its execution, but the major responsibility must have been Smith’s, since an account of the College published by the trustees in 1765 declared that Nassau Hall was “designed and executed by that approved architect, Mr. Robert Smith, of Philadelphia.”

The trustees originally voted that “the College be built of Brick if good Brick can be made at Princeton and if sand can be got reasonably cheap,” but they later changed their plans and “the College” was built of a light brown sandstone from a nearby quarry. That it was good stone and that it was well and truly laid by William Worth, the mason, is substantiated by the fact that the exterior walls, which were twenty-six inches thick, withstood the extraordinary shocks and strains the building had to endure: the depredations it suffered during two years of military occupation in the Revolution, devastating fires in 1802 and 1855, and disturbances of rebellious students, who on one occasion exploded a hollow log charged with two pounds of gunpowder inside the main entrance, cracking the adjacent interior walls from top to bottom.

It took two years to erect this building and even before it was completed the trustees voted to name it for the governor of the Province, Jonathan Belcher, who staunchly befriended the College in many ways. “Let BELCHER HALL proclaim your beneficent acts . . . to the latest ages,” they wrote the governor, but, “with a rare modesty,” as President Maclean later noted, the governor declined the honor, and at his suggestion the building was named Nassau Hall in memory of “the Glorious King William the Third who was a Branch of the Illustrious House of Nassau.”

taken from:  http://etcweb.princeton.edu/CampusWWW/Companion/nassau_hall.html


Nassau Hall (or Old Nassau) is the oldest building at Princeton University in PrincetonMercer CountyNew Jersey, United States.[3] At the time it was built in 1756, Nassau Hall was the largest building in colonial New Jersey and the largest academic building in all the American colonies.[4] The University, then known as the College of New Jersey, held classes for one year in Elizabeth and nine years in Newark before the Hall was completed in 1756. Designed originally by Robert Smith, the building was subsequently remodeled by notable American architects Benjamin Latrobe and John Notman. In the early years of Princeton University, Nassau Hall accommodated classrooms, a library, a chapel, and residential space for students and faculty. It housed the university’s first Department of Psychology, for example.

During the events of the American Revolutionary War, Nassau Hall was possessed by both British and American forces and suffered considerable damage, especially during the Battle of Princeton on January 3, 1777. From July to October 1783, Princeton was the capital of the early United States and Nassau Hall hosted the entire American government. The Congress of the Confederation met in the building’s library on the second floor. According to Princeton University, “Here Congress congratulated George Washington on his successful termination of the war, received the news of the signing of the definitive treaty of peace with Great Britain, and welcomed the first foreign minister—from the Netherlands—accredited to the United States.”[5]

At present, Nassau Hall houses Princeton University’s administrative offices, including that of the university’s president. Old Nassau refers affectionately to the building and serves as a metonym for the university as a whole. The U.S. Department of the Interior designated Nassau Hall a National Historic Landmark in 1960, “signifying its importance in the Revolutionary War and in the history of the United States.”

taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nassau_Hall

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Following the untimely deaths of Princeton’s first five presidentsJohn Witherspoon became president in 1768 and remained in that office until his death in 1794. During his presidency, Witherspoon shifted the college’s focus from training ministers to preparing a new generation for leadership in the new American nation. To this end, he tightened academic standards and solicited investment in the college.[16] Witherspoon’s presidency constituted a long period of stability for the college, interrupted by the American Revolution and particularly the Battle of Princeton, during which British soldiers briefly occupied Nassau Hall; American forces, led by George Washington, fired cannon on the building to rout them from it.

taken from:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Princeton_University


The Albert Einstein House at 112 Mercer Street in PrincetonMercer CountyNew Jersey, United States[3] was the home of Albert Einstein from 1936 until his death in 1955.[4]

The house “was probably built in the 1870s or 1880s. The house is a simple pattern-book cottage and in itself is of no particular architectural significance”.[5]:2

Albert Einstein reportedly requested that this house not be made a museum, and the family did not want it to be recognized as such. Nonetheless it was added to the National Register of Historic Places and further designated a U.S. National Historic Landmark in 1976.[1][2][5]



Princeton University Art Museum

The Princeton University Art Museum (PUAM) is the Princeton University‘s gallery of art, located in Princeton, New Jersey. Founded in 1882, it now houses over 72,000 works of art that range from antiquity to the contemporary period. The Princeton University Art Museum dedicates itself to supporting and enhancing the university’s goals of teaching, research, and service in fields of art and culture, as well as to serving regional communities and visitors from around the world.


Fall-2013,-Princeton,-Art-Museum,-So amazing that this outstanding collection belongs to a University Art Museum ….just another amazing for Princeton….

If you are familiar with the Cleveland Museum of Art collection,  the Princeton collection includes several similar, and not so similar pieces by the same artists.

This version of the Charles Wilson Peale’s George Washington at Battle of Princeton, similar but very different…

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Hermes at CMA

DSC09764Hermes uses 75,000 uniquely ‘Hermes’ custom colors to create their legendary, heirloom quality, silk scarves, one of fashion’s most coveted accessories.

In their demonstrations at the Cleveland Museum of Art, the experts from Lyon, France talked the enthusiastic audience, of men and women alike, through the actual making of a scarf from start to the fine finish.  DSC09662 DSC09663 DSC09707 DSC09729Henri meticulously places and paints with a separate screen for each and every color in every scarf.  Each and every shade of every color couldn’t be more perfect and matching the screen to the print exactly… every time ..is a talent.  The spectacular colors take your breath away!


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Marine Corps Marathon weekend, Georgetown 2013


Did you know…the Marine Corps Marathon is the 3rd largest race in the US and the 8th largest race in the world?  2013 was its 38th running?  It is run the last Sunday in October before the US Marine Corps birthday on November 10th?  It is called the ‘People’s Marathon’ because anyone over the age of 14 is welcome to run, it is the largest marathon without prize money and it draws 30,000 runners?




Georgetown Autumn in the Air…..


Dupont Farmers Market…couldn’t resist

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A Halloween Stroll……



2013 Carnegie International


The Carnegie Museum of Art hosts it’s annual International exhibit as a collection from 35 artist participants from 19 different countries.  It captures your eye and attention from afar upon approach as well as sprinkling the work throughout the entire collection.

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The Carnegie International is the oldest North American exhibition of contemporary art from around the globe. It was first organized at the behest of industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie on November 5, 1896 in Pittsburgh. Carnegie established the International to educate and inspire the public as well as to promote international understanding and peace. He intended the International to provide a periodic sample of contemporary art from which Carnegie Museum of Art could enrich its permanent collection. The work of thousands of artists has been exhibited in the Carnegie International, including that of Winslow HomerJames Abbott McNeill WhistlerMary CassattCamille PissarroAuguste RodinWillem de KooningHenry MooreJackson PollockRené MagritteJoan MiróAlberto GiacomettiAndy WarholJoseph BeuysSigmar Polke, and William Kentridge.


Phyllida Barlow, installation view of Tip, 2013, timber, steel, spray paint, paint, steel mesh, scrim, cement, fabric, and varnish 


Phyllida Barlow is known for her use of scrappy materials and rough construction techniques that contradict and undermine the grand scale of her works, resulting in an ambitiously “anti-monumental” aesthetic.

Notice anything..?

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…the people in these photographs are walking with us down this hallway of photos….

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My favorite is the Hall of Architecture where Andrew Carnegie’s mission in 1907 was to:

“bring likenesses of European masterworks to the people of Western Pennsylvania. “If they cannot go to the objects, which allure people abroad,” he stated in 1895, ”we shall do our best to bring the rarest of those objects to them at home.” Containing over 150 individual plaster casts of sculptures and monuments from all over the world..”

taken from the 2013 Carnegie International Guide Book

Artist Gabriel Sierra, as part of the exhibit repainted the walls a rich purple:

..  and adding discrete sculptural elements-is a conceptual and witty approach to the history of the storied space

taken from the 2013 Carnegie International Guide Book