I’m Miss Rosie, otherwise known as Linda’s MacKenzie-Childs Traveling Tote, and based on the amount of time I spend with her, I would say that I’m a favorite. I’ve been waiting to speak for awhile now, and since Linda can think of absolutely nothing to say about this past summer, she is giving me a chance! Above you see me sitting at the edge of a fountain somewhere in sweltering Washington, DC, cooling off while Linda is wondering how she can either abscond with those gorgeous antique urns on the rear pedestals, or take a quick dip in the pool. She did neither, much to my relief! A much more appropriate place for swimming is our favorite beach. There’s Mr. Fun, Will, Chris and Charlotte at low tide on the flats.
We spent many days on Cape Cod, relaxing and walking here, where the tide goes out almost a mile and we can see across the bay all the way to Pilgrim’s Monument in Provincetown. Brewster is on the inside edge of the Cape and besides being famous for these Brewster Flats, it is also the source of these Brewster oysters. There is nothing quite like them, fresh out of the sea!
Often I am called upon to carry home leftovers, but not this time. Are you drooling? Are you a fan? Of oysters or the beach?
One more photo of the beach as the sun starts to set. Boston is right below the setting sun.
Speaking of the city where Linda has left a few bits of her heart, yes, we made some trips to Boston. We never tire of walking the Freedom Trail or looking at the architecture or visiting the historic sites. The State House, which towers over the edge of Boston Common and the start of the Freedom Trail, has a cornerstone which was laid by Paul Revere and Sam Adams.
The gold dome was originally made of wood, but Paul Revere covered it in copper to stop it from leaking. Later it was covered in 23K gold foil, then painted black to comply with WWII blackout regulations! It was re-guilded in 1997 and shines beautifully. It is easy to see from many places in the city as the location was chosen because of the height of Beacon Hill, once a cow pasture.
The dome is topped by a “lantern” and a pinecone. It is not a pineapple! Such fruit is not native to Massachusetts, while the pinecone represents the forests which gave rise to much industry in the area.
Not far from the State House, George Washington, astride his magnificent horse, stands in the middle of Boston Common. Monuments and memorials to George are everywhere in the city, even though he once thought New Englanders to be unbearable and uncivilized.
He changed his mind after he watched their successful efforts to temporarily drive the British from the colonies in March 1776 by hauling cannons up the steep Dorchester Heights hill in the dark of night, so that the British troops awoke to see those cannons all pointing down on them. Surprise! This tower commemorates the event.
There it is off in the distance. It can also be seen from many places in the city, including Charlotte’s neighborhood. Linda was kicking herself for leaving our real camera home on this occasion. I don’t know why she does that, as I am the perfect bag to hold it when she’s not clicking away. So I’ll give you this iPhone pic for now. We will go back for a better shot.
Boston is also a modern city, with the iconic John Hancock buildings (the small one is the original one and the glass is the new) and the Prudential building. Do you remember when the Hancock building was first built and it was losing its windows? They would fall to the ground when the building swayed in the sea breezes from Boston harbor. The building is still studied by architecture students as an example of what not to do, and how to fix it when you don’t listen.
Another site that should not be missed, but which many tourists do not see, is Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge. This is also studied today by architects and landscape architects. Its park-like grounds were designed in the 1820s and is considered one of the first public parks in America. Here, the cemetery is seen as a “sleeping place” rather than a church burying ground, and is indeed very peaceful.
The grounds are made for strolling and reflection, and the monuments are quite beautiful.
The chapel has a most unique sundial. Read.
Many famous people rest here, and although George is elsewhere, in typical Boston fashion, there is a monument to him in the form of this tower.
Linda does NOT like tight spaces but was determined to get a photo for you, so we climbed to the top and were rewarded with this view of Boston. Can you find the Hancock building?
And where was I? Well I know I was there and I was willing to pose but as it took all Linda’s willpower to stand next to the edge and snap this shot I was ignored. At least she wasn’t as bad as the poor woman who was clinging to the stair railing and wouldn’t go up or down! Do you do heights? Or teeny tiny dark spaces?
I know you already saw our tour of Nora Murphy’s Connecticut Country House, but you didn’t see me pose, so here I am in Nora’s dining room.
And I know you didn’t see the antique shop set up at one of the houses on the tour that day, so enjoy. The metal item with the hearts on the shelf is now at our house, an anniversary present to Linda from Mr. Fun! Can you guess what it is? (hint: it’s from France)
It once topped a little house pour un chien ~~ a very lucky and well loved dog, it seems! Now it’s in our living room waiting for the perfect spot. Linda loves it. Someone please tell me the correct name for doghouse in French. I tried to find out, but the web did not come through this time, instead giving me too many conflicting answers. Un chien? Du chien? Niche à chien? Oh mon dieu.
Have you been to the National Cathedral in Washington, DC? If not, you must go. We have been before, but this time the bells were ringing and the ringers were trying to do a peal. The grounds are gorgeous and we are going for a tour of the bells sometime this winter!! We can’t wait!!!! Have you been up to the top to the ringing chamber? The staircase is supposed to be very tiny and hot and dark, but we (Linda and I) are determined to get up to the top. Linda did not make it to the top of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, but just to the last landing before the minuscule, winding, only-wide-enough-for-one-skinny-person-staircase-with-no-room-to-turn-around-if-someone-came-the-other-way (at least in her imagination). The National Cathedral website describes the two climbs to the ringing chamber and up the Gargoyle staircase here. Could you do it? !!!!!
Washington DC is home to some excellent friends so we have many opportunities to visit with natives and see the less frequented sites. After seeing so many monuments to George in Boston it was fun to visit Tudor Place, home of Martha Washington’s granddaughter, who was also named Martha. It is a National Historic Landmark in the Georgetown section of Washington and overlooks the Potomac River. The family could see the White House burning in Washington during the British invasion in the War of 1812, when Dolley Madison famously carried George’s portrait out of the burning building. Can you imagine looking out of your drawing room windows and witnessing this event? History is really so fascinating. And can you see me sitting on the porch steps? I’m just a tiny dot! This should give you a good idea of the size of this building!
The website is full of beautiful photos and info. We toured the grounds quickly as the oppressive heat was too much for Linda and me. The fountain in the first photo of this very long post is on the grounds. Also these paths ~~ it looks cool and shady but it was not. It seldom is cool in DC! And usually humid, too. I’m never without a bottle of water in one of my pockets!
On another occasion we visited the Woodrow Wilson House. I know you are thinking “how boring could this be” but these houses are fabulous and a good docent makes it memorable! Here’s the gorgeous front.
Our docent was excellent, and as we were only two on the tour, we saw some secret places, like the wine cellar (it was Prohibition time!):
~~ and Linda had the chance to play President Wilson’s Steinway piano! ~~ It was definitely a highlight of this trip!
It was in the drawing room next to the French tapestry that was too risqué for Mrs. Wilson (nude cherubs and other such French things 🙂 )!
This neighborhood is home to many embassies, including the former location of the Chinese embassy which had this on the grounds.
I was a little fearful sitting at the feet of this bear but luckily I had the chance to pose with a great man a few weeks later.
It’s the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service. Have you been to a park yet? We have been to several! This one is excellent.
Now if you are driving up Route 95 be sure to stop off in New Haven and visit the Yale Art Gallery. Here you can see such diverse objects as these beauties all in adjacent galleries!
Or you can visit the textile galleries. I posed with these Andean antiques which are part of a special exhibit.
Here’s Linda in the reflection but we can’t remember who this creature could be. Do you know?
We must have come back to these things a million times as Linda was fascinated.
Her favorite, I think:
We were thinking this would be perfect for our foyer.
This museum even has something for the dishaholic, which I know many of our friends are. These are Presidential patterns from the White House but there are all types, from flow blue to modern.
These stairs were not a problem for us.
As a reward to those of you still here, I’ll share a little shopping fun. Lilly Pulitzer had this pink deliciousness in the window and we want one. Don’t miss the seat. I would fit perfectly in the basket!
And yesterday we stopped at Terrain, just for you! They are busy putting up harvest time decor.
Or, if you prefer Juliska, we stopped there too, where I am quite popular as the shop owners are huge MacKenzie-Childs fans. It’s a small world!
I know museums and parks and historic homes are sometimes seen as inspiring nothing but yawns, but if you haven’t been to one lately we hope we’ve inspired you to find one and go! And if you know of one we should see, please do tell!
Or tell us about your love/fear of heights and close spaces and historic homes and Washington and Boston and Juliska and all these other things because Linda needs to know she is not the only one who finds these things so fascinating.
Thank you for coming along on our travels!
Please visit our other Traveling Tote friends:
and Emily who is having a wonderful giveaway for our readers!
Miss Rosie (for Linda) 🙂
joining the fun at Foodie Friday and Everything Else!