Sunday, June 24, 2012

Battlefield Education

The kids requested Civil war battlefields on this trip. Now I am a lover of history, but wars make me squeamish, and the Civil War even more so than most. Most of my sketchy knowledge of it, comes from movies, and maybe a documentary. I hated that in school they expected us to remember battle names, the amounts of dead and so on. Who wants a statistic? I want to know who the people were behind the battles. Of course in the movies, those people die. Which is what happened.

In any case though, I abandoned my hopes of seeing the Chattanooga Choochoo, and instead we drove out to Lookout Mountain in Tennessee to check out the Battle of Chattanooga...

To get to Lookout Mt, you drive out of Chattanooga and up a little
tiny, narrow, winding switchbacky road. People live up there in
huge houses. I would have taken pictures except I was driving.
When you get to the top, you find this. A dramatic entrance to a turning
point battlefield.

There is a little shop and museum located out of the park.

And lots of little signs talking about all the statistic.

I was more interested in the gorgeous views..

They were not interested in having their picture taken.

Looking back over the monuments, and the top of the hill.

Ooh! Flowers!

A monument

But again, look at that view!

I do like this though, imagine them hauling these cannons up here
and siting them over the valley.

But again, look at how pretty!

This place is steep, I honestly don't know how they made it up here at all.
Of course, many didn't, and those who did suffered so much.

Inside, there is a mural of the battlefield.

Afterwards we drove to the Chickamauga battlefield.

Where Cory attempted to kill Devin. Or so it seems like in this photo anyway.
I didn't take nearly as many photos at Chickamauga, but their museum there was awesome. We unfortunately were all getting hungry, and rushed through it toward the end. It focused a lot on the suffering of the Civil War, and the entire South afterwards. Then we drove through the battlefield past all the monuments. I wish we had spent more time overall there. Visiting both though, made for a well rounded day. We saw a pivotal battle for the north, and one the south won, plus two dramatically different battlesites.

This photo was interesting as it showed them getting things up
to Lookout Mt. It still boggles the mind.

Some of the battlefields.

Each monument is for a troop that fought.

I still slightly regret though not getting to see the Chattanooga Choochoo...

Saturday, June 23, 2012


I can not go to Disney World and blog. The sheer mental and physical exhaustion from a Disney Marathon, especially one in the heat and humidity of June, means that booting up a computer, getting it to talk to the hotel router, and uploading pictures is beyond me.

I also can not blog while driving 3600 miles in 3.5 days, slamming through 14 hours of driving a day.

I apologize for the situation.

However, I am home now HOME at the beach! We made it, in record time, after driving 6800 miles through 19 states. (round trip of course). I came home to delighted animals, and a bunch of bare root roses to plant.

Today, I am tackling the rose situation, while my 1200 sorted photos upload to the computer. I shall then photo bomb you with happy Disney photos, along with some travel ones.

Friday, June 8, 2012


We are in Macon GA tonight, after spending the day winding through Georgia. Here's a little secret. I love the south. If it wasn't for the ticks, chiggers, poisonous snakes, huge spiders, and heat I would have seriously considered moving here instead of back to the Northwest. I was surprised how similar it is though in plant life to the northwest. Huge Rhodies, gorgeous flowers and so lush.

More on the south later though, here are the pictures from St Louis. I love Missouri. I lived there for 3 years, we had so much fun exploring and seeing new things there. We have taken the kids there before but this was their first trip to St Louis and the arch.

The park leading to the Arch. The architect designed the park to
match the shape of the arch.

The arch is a catenary curve
The old courthouse where the Dred Scott trials were held

Peeking out the windows at the earth 630 feet below

Home of the Cardinals!

The walkway is only 7 feet wide

Bridges from the top.

Imagining where Percy Jackson would have been in the Lightening Thief..

The trip down

It's a bit tight inside.

I love this angle. The arch is only 17 feet wide.

Gateway to the West

After the ride to the top, we took a different ride.

It was riverboat time!

We rode on the Tom Sawyer, Becky stayed docked waiting for dinner.
One interesting thing we learned was that Mark Twain's pen name came from
a riverboat captain's phrase meaning Safe Waters

Once you get on the water it's an even better view

The power plant built for the 1902 world's fair. It was an important
one since it introduced ice cream cones, hot dogs, and iced tea to the world.

The arch and the corner of the Eades bridge. Built in the 1800s.

Enjoying the view, and absolutely perfect weather.

We had no time for a carriage ride this trip.

Walking underneath the arch.

Goodbye St Louis, see you next time!
Tomorrow we are off to Disney. This is the first night we made it to the hotel at an early time, and we're all hoping for an easy day tomorrow so we can have plenty of energy for Mickey.