‘Tis the weekend of the 127 Yard Sale aka The World’s Largest Yard Sale. The Places In The Home Gang hit the sale in Gadsden, Alabama many moons ago on our way back home from our annual trek to the hills and mountains of East Tennessee. The already overloaded Excursion and U-Haul ( it was very normal for us to pick, hunt and buy enough treasures, trinkets and trash to warrant renting a u-Haul). Have any of you ever been to The World’s Largest Yard Sale? Please share! I love this pic from Authentica Classics. More where that come from here.
Gone with the Wind is as famous for its lines as it is for the movie itself. If I had a nickle for every time “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn” has been quoted well, you know. Good Housekeeping recently informed its readers the infamous ending almost wasn’t the famous ending as we know it. An alternate ending has been revealed through the recent findings of a script. Take a look at what words Scarlett may have spoken over at Good Housekeeping.
The Places In The Home gang will not be taking a vacation until later this year, so to feed my traveling jones I’m living vicariously through vacation trip reports from readers, friends and family this summer. Thanks to the tales of road and sky journaled through the lenses of varied mobile device cameras, I’ve traveled to Tennessee, North Carolina, Crete, Las Vegas, Toronto, Cocoa Beach, Destin, Georgia, Seattle and New Orleans. Incoming vacation trip reports show the traveling masses are living up to my travel motto.
I called our son this morning to ask if he would mind me posting this picture of him and his girlfriend from their June trip to Las Vegas. He thought about it for a minute and in his characteristically witty manner replied, “You have my Viva Las Vegas permission.”
A picture tells the story long after the vacation ends.
Balos Beach Crete, Greece
The intended purpose of a vacation is fun,
Lake Burton, Georgia
and fun is always in style.
A fun accent piece makes for an interesting conversation piece, a fun night out with friends knocks at the door of nice to see you again, and a punch of fun color shows off the ever appropriate sense of spontaneity.
Eiffel Tower – Paris Hotel
Music is the ultimate traveling companion. It’s the soundtrack memories dance to. I put as much thought into selecting our travel tunes as I do the travel itinerary. It’s very High Fidelity. Gosh, what is it with me and movies references this week? The music we travel to stays on the mind and the memory, and believe me, I speak from experience. My dad decided one extended summer trip many summers ago that since he was a Willie Nelson fan the entire family was going to become Willie Nelson fans, like it or not. Before the seat belts were buckled and the tires had cleared the driveway our self-appointed travel DJ popped Stardust by Willie Nelson into the cassette player (told you it was many moons ago). The cassette played and played over the mountains and through the woods all the way to grandmother’s house and back. As much as we bitched and protested about it then, we have never forgotten that trip nor that album. To bring it all home, guess what comes in as my number one playlist starred under travel tunes? The music is good, but the memories are what makes it great.
Where are you going on your next vacation? What music will be making your travel playlist? Share your vacation trip reports here!
There’s no place like home, but there’s beautiful places and spaces that do a fabulous job of stylishly standing in. For the holidays, memorable milestone days or discovering new highways and byways, the gift of travel travels well.
One of the best and most memorable Christmas gifts I ever received was a trip to Las Vegas. The window of time from “Hey baby, let’s go to Vegas” to “we would like to begin the boarding process” was super small. Fun in the desert sun details kept me searching, hopping and quite frankly, second-guessing if I had covered the travel information bases. An informed traveler is a savings savvy traveler of time, money and second-guesses.
Where do you want to go on vacation? Eight lovely words, don’t you think? Marriott does. Marriott International is a leading hospitality company with over 3,800 properties in over 74 countries and territories around the world. Choosing the destination is only one part of the exploration equation. You’ve got sights to see and places to go. Hello, Marriott Destinations information for all things know where to go because being in the destination loop need not be an exhaustive exercise in travel what to dos. If ringing in the New Year New York City style is on the travel agenda, this New York City’s Five Boroughs infographic from the team at Marriott New York Hotels is a must read.
New York City’s Five Boroughs – An infographic by the team at Marriott New York Hotels
Bright neon lights of another city calling your name? Even if you’re on a budget, Las Vegas can be a great destination for a fun, yet inexpensive getaway. Here’s an example of valuable Welcome to Las Vegas info from the in the know folks at Marriott Las Vegas Hotels. Planning your trip during the weekdays or the off-season time of July-August results in deals hotter than the desert temps. Cha-ching! That’s one way to win in Vegas. The Las Vegas on a budget infographic gives the scoop on how to get the most out of your trip.
Las Vegas on a Budget – An infographic by the team at Marriott Las Vegas Hotels
From first hand travel experience, destination information saves valuable time (the most important travel commodity) and gives you the all important pre-trip info on the places high on your list of what to see and where to go. Attention to detail is an important aspect of successful travel plans. Travel in savvy style and pretty up your travel plans with Marriott Destinations information.
I was selected for this opportunity by Clever Girls Collective, however all content and opinions expressed here are my own.
Moving on to the second part of our The Myrtles: Inspiration, History and Mystery adventure, we pick up with our party of three filling the afternoon hours taking in local points of interest while counting down the time to The Myrtles Mystery Tour portion of our trip to St. Francisville, Louisiana. This story takes place fifteen years ago, right around the time I opened Hopefully Classic Antiques and Interiors. As you can imagine, antique shopping was high on the list of things to do, see and buy. I can’t begin to tell you how much I love antiquing. Dave the Builder gets into it, and being the fabulous parents we are we know how to bribe entertain our son while antiquing and attending auctions. We trekked the streets and shops of downtown St. Francisville until we could trek no more. New Roads, here we come!
In a glowing review of highlights and attractions not to be missed was the story of Miss Emily. Miss Emily was a local woman who worked the queue of vehicles waiting to board the ferry selling parched peanuts, homemade pralines and soft drinks from a large basket. I love it! Sitting in line waiting to drive onto the ferry goes better with an ice cold Coke, salty peanuts and a homemade praline. We continued our afternoon nosh aboard the ferry as we crossed the Mississippi River. This unique mode of transportation is now closed. In the name of progress and moving on up, the ferry has been replaced by the John James Audubon Bridge. I’m glad we got the chance take a ride on it before it did.
New Roads did not disappoint. I didn’t know what I was expecting in return from this small town, but it delivered lagniappe in a big way. We found our way to the main part of town and hit up several antique shops. The first shop (sorry, I can’t remember the name of any of the shops) specialized in clocks and vintage walking sticks. Dave the Builder was in his height of glory. We were welcomed into the shop by an older gentleman who was the owner and a lovely, lovely older lady whose greeting came in the form of my kind of question, “champagne or fruit punch?”
Our son put in his request for the fruit punch. I guess she could tell I was a little apprehensive about their comfort level with him in the shop with a goblet full of bright red fruit punch. I knew this kid was raised in and around the biz and the dos and don’ts in shops and showrooms, but I also knew she was not privy to this pertinent piece of information. This lovely and wise woman handled the situation with such grace and tact. She invited him to follow her to the butler’s pantry to help fix the drinks and slip a cookie or two. She realized right quick she had made a new friend. Gosh, what a great memory! We sipped, shopped and scored two of the most unique antique walking sticks. I wish I had them both today, but I sold them to a client the following week. Oh well, the memory is more valuable to me than the walking sticks could ever be.
We found a couple of other shops and enjoyed the local fare before heading back via ferry to St. Francisville. The timing was just right as it was barking up on sunset and coffee time. We crossed another suggested stop off our list by visiting The Magnolia Cafe. This place is right up our alley- an unpretentious do drop inn heavy on casual fun, food and drink.
It was about that time to head out for the Myrtles Mystery Tour. We drove up the winding driveway of The Myrtles, and the setting and timing could not have been better to set the mood and the tone for a mystery tour. The above image says it better than I can. We claimed three of the large rocking chairs on the veranda and pondered what was to come. While the crowd and the anticipation built, certain imaginations showed signs of running away with the night. Miss Hester, our tour guide for the evening, casually opened the front door at precisely 7:00 pm and invited the crowd of about twenty to come right on in. Talk about playing to an attentive and crowded room! We all gathered together in the foyer with wide eyes and listening ears. This is where things begin to get interesting.
In the daily meeting with the Places In The Home creative team (me, myself and I), quiet and centered thought brings forth ideas. Sometimes it all runs together, and at other times the ideas and interest flow like the mighty Mississippi River. There’s a world of inspiration out there folks! I love the search, especially when it is right here at home. October is a great month for antiquing, fall road trips and home tours. We took October very serious a few years back and set out on a intrigue packed afternoon and evening fondly referred to as The Myrtles: Inspiration, History and Mystery.
Working for family is a trick and a treat. I set the tone for a blissful and professional working relationship right off the bat, and we’re off and decorating. My brother is once again enlisting my help in redecorating his den and foyer. He didn’t realize he also wants to freshen up his dining room decor until I gently persuaded him to do so.
His circa 1903 home is one of the few Victorian turret architecture examples in the state. Staying true to the period is an absolute must on the exterior for historical purposes however, I am allowed to blur the lines when it comes to the interior. Small changes and edits keep the bottom line affordable and in check with current styles. Changing the neutral color palette is off limits. He loves it, and it flows with the historical aspect of the home.
click on image to enlarge
New lamps for the sideboard and replacing the dining room chairs ( bad, very bad) is first on the list. He has tried his best to get his hands on the balustrade lamp Dave the Builder made for me. Dear brother, it ain’t happening. That is the reason I sourced lamps in a more sophisticated image of my lamp for his consideration. We will also be paying attention to new curtains or perhaps new trim for the existing ones, a new rug and lowering the artwork and framed photos. I have to consider the twelve foot ceilings, proportion of the space and overall balance when placing artwork.
Placing items and photographing the space for reference reminded me of the details surrounding the silver lazy susan with double turned malachite handles atop the sideboard. St. Francisville, Louisiana is a charming town rich in history and historical sites. My brother is a history buff who really appreciates the architecture of historical homes. He enthusiastically believes no trip to St. Francisville is complete without a tour of The Myrtles Plantation.
The Myrtles Plantation is not without national media attention. Referred to as one of “America’s Most Haunted Homes”, The Myrtles has been the subject of interest, articles and television documentaries from Veranda, Travel and Leisure, The New York Times and The History Channel to the one I most remember, the visit with cameras rolling from Oprah Winfrey. As visitors make their way up the winding driveway to the entrance of the circa 1796 Antebellum mansion, distinctive features such as the brick courtyard, double dormers and the lacy wrought iron wrapped front veranda captures the eye. I could sit on the veranda in the large rocking chairs staring out at the moss draped live oaks and lush grounds for hours. One Saturday afternoon and evening fifteen years ago I did just that.
Dave the Builder, our son and I went to Baton Rouge for a working vacation. My brother suggested we drive over to St. Francisville and New Roads to check out the sites and tour The Myrtles. If we did tour The Myrtles he wanted me to pay close attention to the silver lazy susan in the dining room. We bounced the idea around, decided what the heck, and off down Hwy. 61 we went. Our first order of business when we arrived was to have lunch at The Carriage House Restaurant at The Myrtles Plantation.
Our waitress inquired if this was our first time to The Myrtles. She gave us the poop scoop on the town, the shops, and the Saturday evening Myrtles Mystery Tour. The Mystery Tour is held on Friday and Saturday nights, and is touted as the opportune time for Chloe, the reported ghost known to inhabit the house and grounds of The Myrtles, to make an appearance. Our son was captivated, my curiosity was piqued, and Dave the Builder thought it would be a fun way to spend a Louisiana Saturday night. I made reservations for the three of us for the 7:00 pm tour, and we left the grounds highly anticipating our return.
In part two of Three Part Harmony: Inspiration, History and Mystery I’ll tell the tale of Chloe, recount our ferry trip to New Roads and the infamous peanut lady, antiquing, champagne punch, and the fun and fright of the Mystery Tour.
Deep in the soul of summer travel times with family and friends lurks the shadows of summer vacation memories. A rise in temperatures signaled the rise in my travel anticipation, even if our holiday road only lead to a local pool, creek, or lake.
For those times when the holiday road lead to East Tennessee or anywhere in the great state of Texas the party was on! Summer, family reunions, cousins, and swimming pools go naturally together. Lampasas, Texas set the scene for our annual summer family reunion. While the parents, grandparents, aunt, and uncles told tall tales, prepared epic picnic fare, and played 42, my cousins and I clocked hours in the Hancock Springs Pool. I’m not sure, but I believe my love and fascination with swimming pools began there and then. Everything is bigger in Texas, especially the memories!
Gatlinburg, Tennessee and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will forever be considered my home away from home. Every summer of my childhood my parents, brother, and I made our annual trek to East Tennessee. It’s a travel tradition that has carried through to my family. Memories from the past blend in with new memories we are making. I like a little past served with the present, and summer vacations tend to deliver on that front. Remember these?
A picnic in the Smokies is a must do for our gang of merry travelers. As much as convenience tempts me, Solo cups need not apply. I pack a mean vintage picnic basket complete with aluminum tumblers circa 19ihavenoidea. Ever the colorista, these darlings make a summer tablescape pop with their blast from the past retro fashion colors.
Dave the Builder and I were both raised in the era of larger than life hotel and motel swimming pools. How many of you were too? Big haul road trips came with the extra added bonus of at least one overnight stay in a hotel or motel. The mid trip overnighter existed in order to break the “are we there yet?” monotony. This is where things had the power to get summer splash zone interesting. The first indication of how good or how bad things were to come was based on the size, style, and neon quotient of the hotel or motel sign. Didn’t your heart drop at first glimpse of a beloved Holiday Inn sign? The parents may have measured the quality of the overnight accommodations by the luxury offerings, but the kids knew what really mattered- the swimming pool. In order for a property to receive the kid approved five star rating there better be a whole lotta pool time on the schedule.
I guess the more things change the more they stay the same. We’ve clocked many sun screened soaked hours at many a swimming pool with our son. Whenever I see the swimming pool in the image above my mind and heart immediately take me back to a late July afternoon twelve years ago when our son learned to swim. It’s those kind of summer vacation memories that become the priceless souvenirs of a lifetime. Where will you be making summer vacation memories this year?