September 29, 2016

Honoring the Tomb of the Unknowns, Arlington, VA


Over the years, we've seen a number of the memorials and
 historical monuments throughout the Washington, DC area. 
Each one evokes feelings of pride and patriotism, but by far 
the most solemn is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Located at the Memorial Amphitheater in Arlington National Cemetery,
the tomb is the final resting place for Unknowns from
World War I, World War II and the Korean War.

Since 1937, the Tomb is guarded by an Honor Guard
24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

The Sentinal takes 21 steps as he walks in each direction while guarding the Tomb.
This relates to the highest honor given in the military, the twenty-one gun salute.

The Sentinal stops on his 21st step, turns with a heel click and faces the Tomb 
for 21 seconds, then turns and "walks the mat" 21 steps in the other direction.
He always carries his weapon on his outside shoulder, 
placing himself between the Tomb and any potential danger. 

The Changing of the Guard is a reverent, formal ceremony.
It's well worth watching; we stayed to see it twice.
The precision and devotion with which the Honor Guard
carries out this respected tradition is mesmerizing.

The weapon of the new Sentinal is thoroughly inspected.

September 26, 2016

Fabulous Vintage & Antique Finds at 86 Home

I'm just wowed by 86 Home, a shop I found on Etsy
that sells fantastic vintage accessories!
Antiques don't have to be dark, dusty and stuffy.
You don't need to commit to them
all over the place and in every corner of your house. 

No matter how contemporary and sleek your decor is,
a vintage accent piece brings a rich sense of history.
Not just any piece. Something deliberate.
Something to add depth and balance,
and a nod of appreciation for generations past.

86 Home groups items into creative categories such as
The English Study,
The Bohemian Bungalow
and The Rustic Cabin
that guide us to just the right accent pieces for our homes.
And who doesn't want a home to be just a bit more...homey?

Want to see more?

Images used with direct permission from Jaclyn at 86 Home.

September 24, 2016

William Morris: Arts & Crafts Movement Designer

I've had a long-time love for the patterns of William Morris.
A true fan of the Arts & Crafts Movement,
I'm attracted to many of its aspects that contribute to
an attitude of comfort and serenity in the home:
deep, saturated colors, lots of rich wood, 
Frank Lloyd Wright architecture (think Fallingwater), 
mica or Tiffany-style glass lamps, stacked stone,
oil-rubbed bronze metals, and soft leathers.

Textile designer William Morris' boldly patterned fabrics, wallpapers and
embroideries played a big part in defining this decorating style. 
I've gathered some of my favorites to show you here on the blog.
(Starting with Compton, above.)

And here's a bonus - a fabulous quote by Morris.
I love his way of thinking! 

"The true secret of happiness lies in 
taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life."
-William Morris

Strawberry Thief


Golden Lily



Honeysuckle & Tulip


Fruit Embroidery



Bird and Pomegranate

Want more?
Go to The Morris & Co. website.

September 20, 2016

Crocheted Sweets by Flaming Pot

Straight from the corner pastry shop, these sweets are 
hand-crocheted by Paula, of Flaming Pot, based in Australia.
Brew some coffee to serve with a plate of her donuts (above)!
The much larger version (below) is a pillow to toss on your bed or sofa.
It'd be a fun accessory for a college girl's dorm room!

These yummy ice cream cones are baby rattles!

Deliciously adorable cupcakes!

Everything's coming up roses!

Oh, the cuteness of these Tinkerbell-esque slippers,
keeping tiny little toes toasty warm!

And how about this collection of crocheted darlings?
Each one is waiting to be somebody's new best friend!

Here's where to find more Flaming Pot:

Images used with direct permission from Paula.

September 18, 2016

Our Day at Arlington National Cemetery

A hush of reverence overcame us. 
We were called to pay homage and show respect as we walked 
through the hallowed grounds of Arlington National Cemetery.
It was an honor to visit this great place that is dedicated
to those American men and women who served our country.

Some facts:

Arlington National Cemetery was officially made a
national burial place by the War Department in 1864.

The cemetery is 624 acres in size.

Over 400,000 active duty servicemen, veterans 
and their families have been buried here.

Each weekday, 27-30 funerals are held, with 6-8 on Saturdays.

Prominent figures among those buried here:
President William Howard Taft
President John F. Kennedy
Senator Robert F. Kennedy
Senator Ted Kennedy
Medgar Evers
General John J. Pershing
General Omar N. Bradley
General George C. Marshall
Oliver Wendell Holmes
William Jennings Bryan
Audie Murphy
Abner Doubleday

We took the official narrated tour, hopping off the tram at each stop.
My photos represent only a handful of the numerous 
memorials and monuments throughout the cemetery. 

A very popular place in the cemetery are the grave sites of assassinated
President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, and his wife Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis.

The eternal flame.

Burial sites of explorers Robert Peary and Matthew Henson,
who, in 1909, discovered the North Pole.
The National Air Force Memorial is seen in the background on the left.

Part of the USS Maine Memorial is the actual main mast of the battleship. 
It commemorates the lives that were lost in the explosion 
of this ship in Havana Harbor, Cuba in 1898.
"Remember the Maine" became a rallying cry in the Spanish-American War.

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is especially moving to witness. 
(You can read my post on this ceremony here.)

The Nurses Memorial is a serene marble sculpture that 
looks over the graves of hundreds of military nurses.
It "commemorates the devoted service to country and 
humanity by Army, Navy and Air Force nurses."

Arlington House was built by George Washington Parke Custis
as a living memorial to his grandfather, George Washington.
Custis' daughter Mary became the wife of Robert E. Lee.
The history of how the surrounding land came to be a
national cemetery is intriguing, and one worthy of researching.

The Civil War Unknowns Memorial - In 1866, the remains of 2,111 soldiers,
both Union and Confederate, were gathered and buried at this spot.

The US Coast Guard Memorial features the motto Semper Paratus (Always Ready),
and a bronze seagull with uplifted wings to symbolize the tireless vigil of the Guard.

Memorializing the crews of the Space Shuttles
Challenger (1986) and Columbia (2003).

With sincere appreciation for your service to our country,
rest in peace, American heroes, one and all.

For more information, see the Arlington National Cemetery website.

You may be interested in these posts I've written as well:
A Solemn Visit the the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial
The US Air Force Memorial: Honoring Airmen with Reverent Patriotism