Tag Archives: Reynolds

Day Three of My Trip to DC

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This is a recap from day 3 of my trip, which was actually on Sunday, August 4th.

We got up pretty early, and headed to Mt. Vernon, the estate of General George Washington, the first President of the United States.

And no, I didn’t come home.  Yes, I live in Mt. Vernon, but not this Mt. Vernon.

Mt. Vernon

His plantation is huge, and we walked most of it.  You can see on this map above how it is laid out.

Mt. Vernon

It was after this day, doing all this walking and toting around a purse and a camera, that I decided to borrow Leslie’s backpack, and boy did that help a lot.

Look who I found in the lobby!  It’s George and Martha with their grandchildren.  Was George really this tall or am I just short?

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This was on a column outside the lobby.

Mt. Vernon

This is the road we took to get to the slave quarters.  Everything here was just beautiful.

Mt. Vernon

Well, not the slave quarters so much, and I’m sure they didn’t think they were so great either when they had to live in them.  This is the slave quarters which housed, men and women in separate quarters, the Shoemaker’s shop and the Stove room.

Slave Quarters

This is the women’s slave quarters.  They lived and worked out of here.  Some of them would work out of the house.  They have a lot of artifacts enclosed in glass that they have found beneath the slave quarters.

Women's Slave Quarters

The older women who couldn’t work in the house or keep up, would work in the slave quarters, spinning to make thread for the clothes.

Spinning

The men’s quarters stayed mostly empty throughout the day as they worked sun up to sun down. They slept two to a bunk.

Men's Slave Quarters

Men's Slave Quarters

Men's Slave Quarters

The stove room, which was in this building, had to be manned at all times throughout the winter to provide heat for the greenhouse to keep special plants and trees alive.

Stove Room

The gardens were very beautiful.

Mt. Vernon Garden

Then we went around to the Blacksmith Shop and learned a lot about how they make all the things on the plantation as complete replicas of what was here during George Washington’s time.  Nails, candlestick holders, hooks, horseshoes, etc.

Blacksmith Mt. Vernon

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Next, we went on a tour of George Washington’s house, but you are not allowed to take pictures inside.  However, this is the view from his backyard.

View from George's backyard

Amazing right!  Can you just imagine George and Martha taking a stroll out here?

Then I would imagine he would take his lady for a drive in this bad boy!

George's Ride

By the way, Martha’s maiden name is Ball, and my grandmother was a Ball, I’m pretty sure I’m not related to Martha, but wouldn’t that be totally cool??

Ok, back on track.

Here’s a view of the stables.

George's Stables

They still use and work this land, so just let me say, there are years and years of a funky smell coming from this stable.

They also have sheep and cattle.  I couldn’t get a good shot of the cattle they were too far away, but here’s a cutie chasing some birds out of the food.

George's sheep

Then we followed the loop around to the location of the original tomb of the Washington’s. Originally there were twenty or so people buried in this tomb, and when George died, he specified in his will for a new tomb to be built and they all be moved to it.

Washington Tomb

So, here is the new tomb.

Washington Tomb

Washington Tomb

And here is Martha on the left, and George on the right.  Through the door behind the wreath are the other family members from the original tomb.

Washington Tomb

Then we followed the road on around and came back to the center opposite of their home. We tried to take a selfie, but it was a fail.  Here it is anyway.  You can kinda see the house in the middle of our heads, and the rainbow.  Lol.

Selfie on Washington Plantation

A bystander seeing our effort failing, offered to take a photo for us.  Which was really quite funny considering Leslie had just offered to take a picture of a nearby family, and the man barked “NO!” at her as the wife tried to smile it away.  I’m praying for your girl if you happen to read this.  He must be something else to live with.

Washington Plantation

Then, lo and behold we ran into the plantation overseer.

Washington Plantation

He was kind enough to let me take a photo.  But, if I were you, I wouldn’t mention to him that it’s the year 2013 and he is NOT really a plantation overseer.  He gets really offended. I’m thinking he should hook up with that ladies husband and they can bark at each other. Right, Leslie?

Anyway, that concluded our tour of the Washington Plantation, and it was really enjoyable. I highly recommend you go there and experience this for yourself.  I will someday take Knucklehead here as I know he would have loved this.

We left there and headed to the Hamilton Hotel where we went to a Gospel Brunch.  If you have never done this, it’s a must do thing.  It was really neat.

We stood in this long line to get in.  Once inside, the lines were just as long for the buffet, but man oh man, the food was excellent.

Hamilton Gospel Brunch

Hamilton Gospel Brunch

Hamilton Gospel Brunch

This is the Gospel Persuaders, and they were really good.  They sung songs that they have written and usually perform, and they were good.

The Gospel Persuaders

And after this we went back to the apartment and Leslie had a volleyball game.  She plays in a local league and I was going to go with her, but hey, I’m old and she’s young and I figured she would need a break from me at this point and I figured she would really like to hang with her friends afterwards like she always does, so I bowed out.  Really, I know that all sounds good but the truth was my feet hurt pretty bad and I knew I couldn’t muster the energy to do one more thing on this day.

So, this is what I did.  I laid on this bed and watched her Netflix all night.

Win Win for both of us.

Rest at Last

Don’t forget I have a huge give-away coming up in just two days!

Day Two of my DC Trip

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This is my recap of what we did on Saturday, August 3rd. As you can see, this is August 14th, and I am way behind.  I had every intention of updating each night, but then my laptop went capoot, and I just didn’t have it in me, to do it from my iPad.

This day of my trip, was so tiring, that I just get tired all over again thinking about it.   My poor feet haven’t seen this much action since I was a teenager probably.

Speaking of which, the couch to 5k was put on hold during this trip because I was so busy there, and I was already doing so much walking, but there’s no worries.  I swear I have walked more this trip than I have in the last year.

Yay, me!

Ok, here comes the recap:

Leslie and I got up and drove back over to Bonnie’s house. We had a great stay in the local Holiday Inn Express thanks to Bonnie. Then we set to work visiting with Bonnie. She tells wonderful stories which I recorded and will be shared here with you in the future.  I can’t wait to get these recaps over with so I can share all the great genealogical stuff I found!

This is me and Bonnie.
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Here is Jim working on some files we were sharing back and forth and Bonnie was telling stories.

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Look at all that stuff on the table, what you can’t see is boxes, and stuff spread out on the floor that we went through.

I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful it was to sit and listen to Bonnie talk about my grandmother’s family. I was so close to my grandmother my whole life up until her passing, and this just made me feel closer to her again.  When I look in Bonnie’s eyes, I swear it’s like looking in my grandmother’s.

We had a sad goodbye and departed. Leslie and I then headed to Camden, New Jersey where the U.S.S. New Jersey was docked.

USS New JerseyYou see these ships on TV in documentaries, but no one can prepare you for the sheer magnitude of them.

USS New JerseyLeslie and I tried throughout this whole trip to get a selfie at each stop.  Sometimes it became quite comical.
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Visiting the USS New Jersey was really special for Leslie and I because our cousin Mr. Carl Hurt served on the ship during WWII. This is Mr. Carl during that time.

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And this is my sweet Mr. Carl back in April when I last visited him.  He lives three hours from me, and I sure wish we lived closer together.

Carl Hurt - 2013
He’s fallen and hurt his hips and is not doing so good, so I was happy to call him from the ship. He was able to tell me what his job was, and what part of the ship he was on. I had him on speaker phone and one of the men working on the ship listened in, and asked Mr. Carl a few questions, and then he took us to the part of the ship that Mr. Carl worked on. This section was closed off to the public, so this was a very nice gesture.

USS New Jersey

Mr. Carl was a gunner loader, and he put these shells into the gun behind this man.  You can see the tip of one of the shells sticking up inside the gun, and he’s holding an empty shell that would eject out of the side of the gun.  He was explaining that when the shell would pop out, it would leave dings in the deck.

USS New Jersey

All those dings represent shells fired.

I had to beg this nice gentlemen to let me take his picture, he finally agreed and I’m so glad.  He went out of his way to show us where Mr. Carl worked and to explain Mr. Carl’s job to us.  He did not have to do this.  I wanted to be able to show Mr. Carl his picture.

John DiBlasio

I will give more details on Mr. Carl’s job and experience later, as this was just part of the process of the interview I have planned with him. He wants to tell his story from WWII and since Leslie and I were so close to the ship, I had to go and get some pictures for him and to see the ship myself.  Now, when he tells his story, I will be able to understand the ship.

I can see why these ships were made for young men (and women), because going up and down these stairs is no easy feat.  We weaved our way up and down and in out of the ship.

USS New Jersey

We tried out the beds, and I’m telling you, they should get an award for just sleeping on these things.  I’m inserting Leslie’s picture here cause she just looks way better than I did laying on this bed!  LOL

USS New JerseyBack up on deck and I can imagine that when these guns were fired, you would want to be below deck.

USS New JerseyTo show you the sheer magnitude of this deck, there’s a helicopter on here and there is still plenty of room for lots more stuff.  The helicopter is small in comparison.

USS New JerseyThe U.S.S. New Jersey is one of the most decorated ships in Naval history.

USS New JerseyAs we left the ship, I had to take one last look back, and think about my Mr. Carl and what he must have seen and done on this ship.  It blows my mind that we got to stand where he stood.  I can’t wait to share my experience with him.

One last look back, before we left.

USS New JerseyIt was getting really late in the evening by the time we left, and we decided to go to Philadelphia and find something to eat.

This was my first trip to Philadelphia, and I was in awe of all the history you can see just from passing by in a car.

Philadelphia

Philadelphia - Congress Hall

Philadelphia

Philadelphia

 

We parked and ate at Chili’s and then got back on the road.

Philadelphia

 

Then as we headed back over the Ben Franklin Bridge, what do I see but a beautiful rainbow!!

Philadelphia Rainbow

 

And an even more beautiful sunset!

Philadelphia Sunset

Guess what?

It’s not over.

Ha!  When we got back to D.C., Leslie wanted me to see how beautiful everything is when lit up at night, and boy was she right.

DC

 

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DC - Red Cross

 

DC -DAR

Now, it’s over.  Thank goodness.  I’m worn out just going back over the whole day.

I’ll be doing a catch up of the other days, and don’t forget, my two-year blog anniversary is coming up in just two days, and I have a huge give-away, so stay tuned folks!

Meeting Cousins and Jersey Shore

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My plane arrived last night in Baltimore and Leslie picked me up at the airport. We drove to somewhere in Maryland to have dinner with Leslie’s friend Dan. I wish I could remember where, but that has left me. Anywho, the food was good and so was the company.
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We sat and chatted for a while and had a great meal then we drove to Arlington, Virginia to Leslie’s apartment. She lives on the 12th floor, which makes me woozy.20130803-000924.jpg
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By this time, it was getting late and we went to bed. We got up this morning and drove to New Jersey to meet Bonnie Ball Harkness Marsh, my 2nd cousin 1x removed, and her son Jim Marsh, who is my 3rd cousin. We got there just in time to eat lunch together and visit for a while.

Then we drove to Jersey Shore, at Asbury Park Boardwalk. This was a really cool place. We had a great time walking the boardwalk with Bonnie and Jim.
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This is Bonnie and Jim.
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We did a little taking in of the sights.
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Then we decided we would walk down the beach to the water and stick our feet in the water. Bonnie stayed on the Boardwalk and waited for us to get back.
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When we got back to the boardwalk, Bonnie was still waiting on us.
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After this we drove back to Bonnie’s house, and had a great afternoon and evening. We traded family stories and genealogies and then we went to dinner.

Now it’s time to crash and rest up for tomorrow!

Around the Compound – July 2013

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Beware, this post is going to be VERY picture heavy.

Cause that’s how I roll.

I’m a visual person, what can I say?

Anywho, I apologize in advance for the length of this post.

Genealogy work has been on the light side, like slim to none actually, because I have been super busy with all of the things below, either directly or indirectly, and then, I was sick for two weeks.  I mean so sick even my skin hurt. blah!

If I have been slow to answer your emails, or comments, please forgive me.  You will see why in just a few minutes.

So, before I get started with my pictorial history for the month of July, I have to warn you, I have some great things coming up!  My two-year blog anniversary is coming up on August 16th and I have secured some pretty great giveaways so please stay tuned for that.

Also, I’m leaving next Thursday to spend 10 days in the DC area with my niece Leslie, and I am beyond excited!  We will be visiting cousins in New Jersey that I have found via this blog.  Also, the possibility that more cousins found via this blog will make the trip there to meet me, so I am blessed beyond words!  I can’t wait to meet my family!

Of course, what would a trip to DC be without a visit to the National Archives, the DAR Library, and the Library of Congress.  Maybe I can break a brick wall while there!

Then, I will do the usual sight-seeing and visiting with Leslie.  Be ready for lots of updates while I’m on my trip.

Now, for the compound news.

On July 1st, this was Knucklehead in our corn.

Knucklehead in Corn

Then, on July 25th, this is The Hubs in our corn. Thank you chicken poop for all your great fertilizing qualities!

The Hubs in the Corn

I did my first canning job with the help of my brother John. Tomatoes.  I’m so proud!

Tomatoes - My first Canning Job

Speaking of Tomatoes, The Hubs picked these out of our garden, look how green they are:

Picked Tomatoes

Now they have ripened up and I suppose they are the next canning project.

Red Tomatoes

There has been lots of picking of squash and The Hubs has already canned all of those up. They are done! Whew!

Knucklehead with Squash Pickings

On July 13th, my babies, ok not so babyish anymore, chickens laid their first egg. It was a proud moment for Knucklehead as he was the one who found it.

First Egg

Now, this is our daily haul. I’m sure they aren’t all laying yet as I have about 70 chickens. If all 70 are only giving me eight eggs a day, some are going to end up in a pot, with about 10 roosters that I know of!  As Renee Zellweger said in the movie ‘Cold Mountain’ – “I hate a flogging Rooster, let’s put ‘em in a pot!”

Daily Eggs

Then, in a rare moment. I caught this on camera, the suspects unaware. Knucklehead was giving JT a massage. I later found out, that Knucklehead was told if he did this, JT would play a video game with him. For shame on JT, cause he never did. Some big brothers will stoop to anything to get a massage!

Knucklehead and JT

There has been lots of picking purple hull peas. I mean lots. This is my stepson Cameron helping Knucklehead. JT was on another row.  This Rooster, made it to the Pot.  Nine more to go.  We sure had a great meal of fried chicken that day!

Cameron and Knucklehead

Here is a sample of our haul of purple hulls, there ended up being about seven bowls like this.

Purple Hull Peas

The kids and I sat around in the living room picking them out while watching TV, and it made me think of the many times I did this with my grandmother.  It sure made me lonesome for her.  They ended up like this, in my freezer.

Put Up Purple Hull Peas

Then, The Hubs brought in plums. He had to go back to work, so I juiced them for him so he can make plum jelly. He has made one batch, but has several more to go.

Plums

I did this.

Cooking Plums

To get all this.

Plum Juice

Silkie came by to get loved on, and I snapped this shot of her. She hates, and I mean hates the flogging Roosters too!

Silkie Silk

There has been lots of snuggle time with Ringo. Especially when I was sick. He loves me and I love him.

Ringo

Then a very proud moment, and one that will be put in our family history. JT had his first Drill this weekend. He goes to another Drill next weekend, and then he leaves on August 19th for boot-camp. After finding all the Ancestors in my tree that have military histories, this makes me so proud as I’m sure it does them. I hope they all smile down on him and help the good Lord above to keep him safe. All prayers accepted!

I snapped these pictures of him when he came back home. They gave him his uniform and boy oh boy, does he look handsome! So, without further ado, please meet Private Justin Tyler Cole.

Private Cole

JT back from Drill

Did I mention how proud I am? Just wondering!

He sent me these pictures that another Private took while at Drill.

JT at Drill

JT at Drill

JT at Drill

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One thing he found at Drill was that he needs to get his two-mile run down to 15 minutes and 56 seconds. He was up in the 19 minute time range. So, what’s a momma to do? She gets in her car, drives around part of the compound, and figures out three times around is 2 miles. Then she puts the boys to work, while she drives behind them in the car soaking up the AC. Ya know, just in case they pass out or something. I’m a good Mom like that.

Knucklehead and JT Running

Knucklehead made it 1/2 mile before he had to stop. JT stopped at around 1 1/2 miles. I told him that big breakfast wasn’t a good idea!

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So since then, I decided I should be more supportive. As in, take part with them.  I took them to the park here in Mt. Vernon the next day, and I walked with them. Actually, I started this Couch to 5k app that I heard about over on Mama Laughlin’s blog, and downloaded to my iphone. This is what helped her get started on her journey, so I thought, why not! I’ll give it a go.

I have survived the first two work outs, the next one will be this evening. Now, it’s been a couple of months since I have weighed, but after I did the first two workouts I thought, I better get a good weight so I know where I have started. As I stepped on that scale, I was so afraid it would be way more than it was last time. But guess what, I was down 7 lbs!! I guess being sick, and then doing this, I have dropped a few. Thank you GOD!

Then, the peaches came.

Peaches

They turned into so many jars of this.

Peaches

Then, cousin Debbie came by for a visit, and I was so happy.  I have been so lonesome to see my Texarkana family and she just brightened the day up for all of us!  This is Mom and Dad, with cousin Debbie James.

Mom, Dad and Debbie

Now, in preparation for my trip to DC, Addie (my sister-in-law) and myself went to the mall yesterday. We spent the whole day, doing girlie things.   Things my chickens wouldn’t know about, and wouldn’t care about.  This is Addie while we were getting our toes done.

Addie

Thank you Addie, for paying for my toes for my birthday! I wish I had remembered to take the cotton out before I took the picture, but oh, well they were still wet and I didn’t want to mess them up.

My Toes

Then I decided, what the heck, I’ll get my nails done. Thank you Glenn (my mother-in-law) for the birthday money!

My Nails

Then The Hubs told me I could get my hair done. Thank you Hubs! No more gray hair!  Muah!

Me - No Gray!

Wow, I feel like a girl again!

Happy 4th of July, y’all!

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Wow, this past week has been crazy!!

The Hubs has been put on 60 hour weeks at work, so the one day of the week he is home, this is what I see:

John Reynolds in the garden

I spent the last two days doing up crock pot meals.  Man, what a lot of work!  This time I had a lot of help and everyone kicked in and we all got it done.  But, it was so much more stressful with so many people involved even though, I wouldn’t have got it done by myself so I am very grateful.

All the family (except Justin) was here today and we had a nice meal at noon time and then over in the afternoon everyone left.  Even The Hubs.  He had to go back to work.  As a true testament to the fact that I am tired, I took not one picture today!  Shame on me!  What was I thinking??

My in-laws were here and I was very glad to have them for a visit.  The house always feels extra empty when it is so full and then Wham!  It’s empty.

In other news, there has been lots of mowing and weed-eating going on around here and I’m  hoping for some rain as everything is starting to wilt.  I don’t want another drought like last summer so please, Lord, bring us some rain.  I need things to stay green for my peace of mind.

Mowing the Compound

That’s a pretty good mow job, eh?

Thank you, thank you very much.

Oh, and please pay no attention to the solid bed of weeds where my once pretty flower bed was next to the house.  I just don’t have it in me to pick all those weeds, and almost all of my pretty pink azaleas bit the dust in last year’s drought.  So sad!

This is my child of the corn.  I would say Children of the Corn, but I only had one here for this totally random picture.  Justin doesn’t like to pose like Knucklehead does so here he is:

Knucklehead in the corn

And yes, he has my flip flops on.

Shhh!  Don’t tell him I told you.

And, he won’t be so happy when we have to start picking all the corn.

One thing about Mom with her Alzheimer’s.  Dad is her comfort zone, so where he goes she follows.

Follow the Leader

If they could find a way to drive the tractor and the mule at the same time and hold hands, I’m sure they would do it.

Feeding time around here looks like this:

Feeding Time

They have feed in feeders, but corn is their daily treat.  They love it.

This is frizzie.  She’s a busy body.

Frizzie

But she’s really cute.

Frizzie

As is my Joan Jett, who is definitely not a Joan.  More like a Johnny Jett.  He tried to crow the other day, and it was a very pathetic attempt.

Joan Jett

The babies that were born on my birthday, are getting so big.  Yay! What a great present!

So, I totally have to name one of them Junie.

The Babies

There are five babies, but they are fast and the most I could get in one picture was four of them, along with one of the Mama’s butt.

So, what’s up chicken butt?

Sorry, I just had to.

And the last bit of news from Around the Compound.

RIP Pat Benatar.

Unless you are on a field trip.

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If you have been taken, (stupid Chicken-hawk, or Coyote) Karma will avenge you!

We await your return.

Susie

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