Monday, June 28, 2010

The President's First Home

No, this is not the White House... I'm talking about our first president, George Washington. He loved his Mt. Vernon. It is a beautiful place and one that I've always wanted to go and visit. Now I can understand why he loved this place so much and always longed to return here and eventually be at rest.

An expansive view overlooking the Potomac from the rear of the home, the views have been preserved and the areas across the river saved from development to leave the viewers this pastoral scene of how things looked during the presidents timeframe....just amazing to still see it intact.

When you try and visualize how this place actually looked and worked like during Washington's timeframe, you really get a wonderful slice of life to Washington's experience away from the capitol and how he really enjoyed living and planning everything in his estate, during his entire stay here.

One must sit on the porch relaxing on these rockers and just enjoy the view, a real nice touch to the tour. I'm sure the President and his family enjoyed relaxing here, drinking tea or imbibing something exotic at the end of every day.

I was very surprised how meticulous and expansive the grounds were, and how all the adjunct buildings, gardens and home show an entire village and how plantation life was for one of our founding fathers.  It did take an entire village to make this place work efficiently.

A view of the separate kitchen building, kept separate from the main home in the event of unlikely fires caused by accidents.

A canning storage and hanging place for food and fowl that would be used for the nights consumption.

The separate laundry room which would be unbearable to work in during the hot summer months, and the laundry work was done all day long.

One of my favorite rooms, the drying room for all the preserved meats, it actually still smelled strong with aged ham hocks haning on these hooks.

One of Washingtons immaculate carriages taking him to the Capitol which was a very long ride from his country estate.

The gardens are also expansive with areas for decorative cutting gardens, a formal parterre and actual potager gardens, vegetable farms, animal pens and fruit orchards. Washington did alot of experimentation and imported plants to test in his plantation along with growing for food production on a massive scale.

A wonderful surprise was the amazing museum which housed many dioramas and extensive genetic studies of how Washington really looked like in during many timeframes of his life, including this diorama of him at a battle scene....the craftsmanship quality and shows were really a fantastic experience and one I wish I had more time for.

No, this is my nephew Carlos being a ham, like he always is....oh Carlos!

Wasn't that a beautiful place and museum, well worth the effort getting out of town to explore Washington's life in a well preserved plantation, home and garden.

To see other worlds this Tuesday to visit

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Purple is the Color

Back to participating on the fun photohunt challenges that occur everyweek and this weeks word is Purple, not a typical color I see when I do my photography. Outside of sunset skies and dark landscapes turning into dark night and purple colored flowers, I went for what I typicially will find my environment.

On a recent hike to a beautiful garden I was able to capture some wonderful macros of an artichoke bloom drawing a busy bee foraging through its sticky pollen anthers. The shocking lavendar/purple constrasting against the yellow and black body of its busy guest.

The little fellow was too focused on his task to notice my poking lense at his every move....and seeing his every move in detail.

To see other purple interpretations go visit

Friday, June 25, 2010

Clear Skies at the Capitol

The sun is setting at the Capitol another magical night and my first time seeing the Capitol lit up after a long 12 hour flight from Hawaii. I rushed from my hotel to the grounds knowing that the sun is starting to set and there will be a hoard of people coming to participate in the annual PBS special at the Capitol, another first experience for myself.

The crowds, the music and the night was totally magical, I was so grateful to be there and just participate!

To see other skywatch fridays go to

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Water scenes by the Potomac and the Monuments

Washington DC is such a special place filled with historic sites and amazing vistas. The Potomac River cuts through the heart of the historic center and borders many of the famous monuments.

It creates a magical appeal and destination from the intense summer heat and draws out the crowds to see the lit up monuments and a time to enjoy the sunsets and the cool nights. I enjoyed visiting these special places recently and during the sunset when the skies are painted with beautiful blues and purples.

The lit up interior of the Jefferson Monument is magical at night, a majestic statue of Jefferson commands immediate awe and respect while you read his quotes and other words of inspiration.

For other Watery Wednesdays, go visit
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