Sunday, October 28, 2012

Peep Week, Moving South, The Hearst Castle & Mission San Miguel

Well as always Peep Week was Awesome.  Being with my Sistahs for a week at Camp Tracy is a time of rejuvenation.  We eat, drink, create, stay up late, talk and tons other things that I can't reveal because they are secrets of the Sistahood. 

Sistah Karen celebrated her 55th birthday in September so Kari and Julie made her an Enchanted Houseboat.  These to ladies are wonderful at creating miniature houses.  All the sistahs have received one except Karen, so surprise awaited her.  She and Stuart rented a house boat last summer but the one that was made for them was far better.

She was beside herself.

Once over the shock she then started to look at all the details that Julie and Kari put into it.  The top floor was her garden area complete with an arbor that Stuart made her plus a Mexican market.  All of us girls where somewhere on the boat.  Yours truly was tending the Mexican market.

Kari taking a shower in Karen's outdoor shower just like at her house.

Julie playing with her favorite toy...a fart machine.

Martha whipping up something tasty in an exact replica of Karen's kitchen.

Gini chilling in a chair just like the one Stuart made in the garden.

It is amazing what these two ladies can create, right down to every exact detail.

Happy Birthday Sistah Karen.


Julie took us on a hike to Ice Mountain which is located at North River Mills WV.

Julie & Karen are standing in the center of the town.  This wonderful old house was once an inn and is said to be haunted by a wayfaring stranger who died there one night.

 Behind this old house is a trail that leads you to Ice Mountain.

Whats really cool is two things:
  1. On September 25, 2012 Ice Mountain was dedicated as West Virginia's Newest National Natural Landmark.  There were only 2 new National Landmarks this year, Ice Mountain was one of them.
  2. Many years ago residents would chip off ice blocks in the summer time for cool drinks.
For generations of North River Mills residents, summertime meant weekend pilgrimages to Ice Mountain. There, at the rocky base, they’d chip off chunks of ice to cart home as the critical ingredient in fresh, homemade ice cream and chilled lemonade.  Ice Mountain gets its name from the refrigeration effect that takes place inside its talus — a sloping mass of boulders at the foot of a mountain. In cooler months, dense, cold air sinks deep into the talus, and ice masses form inside. As the weather warms up, the cooler air flows out of vents among the rocks at the bottom of the slope. It’s here, at the foot of the mountain, that many local children would eagerly gather ice.

Let's take a hike.

Ice Vents - you can really feel the cool air in the summer time.

Once at the top you are standing on Raven Rocks, at an elevation of 1,230ft.  This location provides one of the best views in Hampshire County.

It was especially nice for me to be able to see the rich fall colors in the leaves.  When I owned sticks and bricks, my home was decorated around these colors.

Three high up top sistahs.

Thank you Julie for taking us on this awesome hike. 


Just some random pictures in Julie's studio.

We did a group project of batiking dish towels and had a ball.  First we dyed the towels 3 light shades

 then we took over Julie's garage setting up our waxing station.  When you apply the wax it acts as a resist and doesn't allow the 2nd dye bath to accept the dye.  It is always fun to do a group project as the out come is always different.  The waxing process started around cocktail hour and we first started out with a few simply applicators but soon all kinds of things became applicators.

It is what it is!!! 
What a great time we had, thanks Karen for all your help.  As for the end results we all have to wait as Karen ended up taking them home to finish the process of boiling out the wax, you will get extra points for all that work.  I will receive mine in the mail once I get an address.

As usual it was a wonderful time with my sistahs.  Only 6 more months til Topsail.


I returned on Wednesday and on Saturday we pulled out of Sugar Barge headed to Gilroy CA which is the garlic capital.  Just spent one night as we decided traveling on Sunday would be easier than on Monday.  I have to say the trip down HWY 101 was really nice seeing green farm land and mountains.  Our destination was San Luis Obispo.  While doing research for campgrounds I check out the Moose Lodge and it had RV space.  We have stayed at Moose Lodges before so we decided to check it out. 

Not bad for $10 a night!  We filled the water tank and plug into 20amp service.  The temps were cooler so we didn't have to run the A/C and we basically had the place to ourselves.  On Monday it drizzled all day so we just chilled and then had dinner at the lodge.  If you are a traveler like us it is worth looking into joining the Moose, not all lodges have RV space but when you can find one that you can use it really helps on the camping fees, plus they are usually located in town.  Gilroy was $40 for one night, Moose was $40 for four nights.  After dinner I spent my evening outside enjoying the fresh clean air (first rain we encounter in 6 months) and phone service!!! 

On Tuesday we headed to the Hearst Castle on Hwy 1 to San Simeon.  Again it was a beautiful ride but before we got there we kept seeing this HUGE rock along the coastline so we had to stop to check it out.  

It was Murro Rock at Murro Bay which is an estuary bay.  A picturesque seaside village located along scenic Highway 1 halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

                                                                Complete with sea lions.

Anyway moving on to the Hearst Castle.

And so he did.  William Hearst loved all kinds of art and was an advid collector.  He also love people and built the castle to share with his friends.  He would fly his guests to the castle for long weekends.  I have no words to described it other than AWESOME, so I will let the pictures do the talking.  Some interior photos aren't great as they won't allow you to use a flash. 

To the left you will see mountains and to the right you will see the coast.

We took the Grand room tour.

Meeting Room/Living Room

All the ceilings through out are hand carved.

Dinning Room
Billards Room


Outdoor and Indoor Pools

This is the bottom of the pool, all the gold color is actually Gold, sad to say this indoor pool was not used much.  Both pools were heated.

Guest Quarters

I highly recommend visiting the castle.

The next day we went to Mission San Miguel Arcangel.

The Church was very interesting and beautiful.

The ALL-SEEING EYE OF GOD reminded the Indians they now had a God who was watching them out for them at all times.

The St. Francis COAT OF ARMS show the bare arm of Christ and sleeved arm of Francis-both stigmatized.

St. Francis stands with one foot on a skull-he welcomes death and eternal life.

The center statue is St. Michael the patron saint of the San Miguel church-wearing the hat of an early Spanish judge and holding his sword and scales of justice.

St. Mary, the Blessed Mother, is seen in front of a temple-Templo di Clitumno. 

A large shell represents baptism-the only shell of this size in any of the California Missions.

Two priests are buried near the Blessed Mother's altar-Fr. Marcelino Cipres and Fr. Juan Martin. Together they took their Franciscan vows and are lying here once again together in honored glory.

The Wishing Chair.  Padre Catala' brought it here from Mission Santa Clara.  An old legend told that the Indian children could sit in the chair, make a wish and it might come true.

The wall pulpit is high on the wall so all can see the padre and hear his voice carried over to all the people in the church.  the crown, representing God, has a wood bottom that amplifies the padre's voice as a "sounding board."  Christ as a child is held by the Blessed Mother and the dove hanging from the crown represents the Holy Spirit.

Well theres are history lesson for you.

On the way home we went to Pismo Beach which is 10 miles south of San Luis Obispo.

The farther south you go one can see the change in the coast line and the beaches.  The rugged coastline seems to soften lending way to more expansive sandy beaches, but the water is still cold.


We enjoyed our time in San Luis Obispo and will be leaving tomorrow headed to Escondido where we have family that recently moved there.   But to get there we have to go through Los Angles so wish us safe travels as I am sure it will be a tense day.  Our plans are to stay til the end of the year and then we will be heading to Quartzsite AZ. 

"It sure does feel good to be back on the road again and seeing new things".

Thanks for following and make it a great day.