Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ten Things Thursday ~ Ten Favorite Places

WOW! Can you believe it is Thursday already? Since I missed last week I've been on top of the post for today. I went back through the archives to make sure I haven't duplicated anything, wanna keep this fresh and interesting for you all. Today I'm giving you ten of my most favorite places. I've been to each and every one of these locations and if I can find a picture I'll add them as well. So here we go ... in no specific order I give you my Ten Favorite Places.

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely~Lesperance

1. The Beach ~ We all know I LOVE the ocean and spending time on the beach, walking in the surf, or just sitting in a chair at waters edge gives me the most energizing I can get from any place. The ocean gives me peace, it gives me strength and it gives me my sanity. I've been to the beach on both the Pacific and the Atlantic and while both coasts are beautiful in their own way, I have to admit I prefer the east coast beaches. They are cleaner, and the water is much warmer. Also there is no seaweed in the east coast swimming areas. I'm not saying it's not there at all, I just haven't run into any. I did find seaweed along the California beaches... The picture is from Emerald Isle, North Carolina and it's of our very first trip before we ever moved down here from Maryland.

Picture Credit Travel Through San Diego

2. San Diego ~ When I lived in Arizona, I fell in love with San Diego on a trip with which ever husband it was at the time. After we divorced, I made numerous trips all by myself and found I could explore and discover so much more without having a tag along who didn't like to travel in the first place. Between 1998 and 2001 I would drive myself from Mesa, AZ to San Diego every 6 weeks and spend 3 or 4 days just relaxing and seeking. I found many things but my favorite place in San Diego was the Gas Light District or commonly known as The Heart of San Diego, with the cobbled streets and gas light lamp posts. The old world charm was everywhere you turned.

Photo Credit Steve Watson

3. San Francisco ~ You know that song "I Left My Heart in San Francisco"? Well that applies to most people who have spent any time at all there. From Fisherman's Wharf, to Lombard Street, to the Golden Gate Bridge, to Alcatraz, to the famous and historic Painted Lady row houses, San Francisco has something for everyone. San Francisco is another place I would whisk myself away to on a solo trip. I'd have so much fun playing tourist, asking questions and just embracing the energy found there.

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely~Lesperance

4. Quechee Gorge, Vermont ~ I will be the first to admit, I am absolutely afraid of heights. But I LOVE Quechee Gorge. I think the thing that made it work for me was I didn't leave the ground at all, but walked across a stable highway bridge and looked down into the gorge. It is BEAUTIFUL!!! The water rushing through the gorge is amazingly loud and comforting at the same time. The flora and fauna of the area is so green and breathtaking. I've only been there once so far, Jimmy took me there on one of the trips we took from Maryland to Vermont to visit his family when we first moved to the East Coast. I am hoping to get back soon, maybe this summer if we can somehow work it out.

Picture Credit Greg Pease Photography

5. Baltimore, Maryland's Inner Harbor ~ The first time I saw the Inner Harbor I was overwhelmed. There is SO much to do in downtown Baltimore and it can be a bit confusing if you are trying to figure it out on your own as a newcomer to the city. Jimmy and I went downtown exploring not too long after we moved to MD, we explored many places the entire time we lived there. But the Inner Harbor on New Year's Eve has got to be a very close rival to Times Square (OK, maybe not in reality, but it is in my world as I've never been to Times Square at all). The people, the excitement, the fireworks from a barge out IN the harbor. It was just unbelievable. And we were lucky enough to acquire two of the limited tickets to watch the fireworks from the top floor of the Trade Center just feet from the water and front and center to the barges. (That tall building to the right of the fireworks is where we were for the fireworks that New Year's Eve that I'll never forget.)

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely~Lesperance

6. Revel Grove, Maryland ~ Revel Grove is actually where the Maryland Renaissance Festival is held each year. When we lived in AZ, Jimmy & I had always wanted to go to the AZ Ren faire held in Gold Canyon  just outside of Apache Junction or the Phoenix metro area. However, that faire is held in January and February. Even though the temps could be mild, like as not it was too cold. And besides, a Ren Faire in the desert, with sand and cactus, just didn't fit my minds image of a Ren Faire. After moving to Maryland, we found the local faire and became addicted. It is held on a huge parcel of land that is rolling hills, grass, trees... everything I pictured in a setting for a Renaissance Faire. The first couple years, we looked like the normal touristy types, wearing street clothes and becoming lost in the crowd. Then we met some of the best people I have ever known and we felt like we became part of the *family*. I drug out the sewing machine and set to crafting *garb*. I made a kilt with a flowing poets sleeve shirt for Jimmy and for me it was a simple wenches chemise and over dress. Being in garb probably gave us more confidence, but the people are what made us feel welcome and included. Our last trip to Faire at Revel Grove was the 2006 season, before we moved to Michigan. I miss Revel Grove, and the people, food and entertainment we found there. Soon, Vickie... get your ducks in a row. Remember it's only a 5 1/2 drive from Hope Mills to Maryland. (The picture is actually at the Faerie Festival not the Ren Faire at Revel Grove. I couldn't find any pictures with just Jimmy or myself.)

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely~Lesperance

7. Glen Rock, PA & Darlington, MD ~ Yes, I know, 2 locations. These are the locations for the Faerie Festivals we have attended. I can't give you just one, because they BOTH are full of awesomesauce. Our first time at Faerie Festival was in Glen Rock, PA. at Spoutwood Farm. This is a huge wandering, meandering location full of magick and of course the Fae. Again, the first time we went we dressed in street clothes and stuck out like a sore thumb. Yes, there were other people not in costume, but not very many, LOL!!The pictures I have are mainly of the Faerie Festival in Darlington, MD as this was much closer to where we lived. And, to be honest, I didn't think to take a camera to Spoutwood... my bad, LOL!! This picture is of Candice Night (and me) from the group Blackmore's Night, which was taken after she autographed her latest CD for me.

8. Sedona, Arizona ~ Sedona is located half way between Phoenix and Flagstaff and is more commonly known as Red Rock country. Some of the mountains there have such an energy force flowing through them you can actually feel the pulsing as you are walking down the street. One of the prettiest places in the area is just north of the town in Oak Creek Canyon. The winding switchback two lane highway is not for the weak, LOL!! Living in Arizona for 41 of my 57 years, you can imagine how many times I visited Sedona, every time I went there was a new and exciting experience. The last time I was in Sedona, Jimmy & I went for the Christmas holiday 2001. What an amazing display of lights and decorations. We stayed at the Poco Diablo Resort (our room had a fire place and a view of the mountains, oh my!) and took the trolley to Tlaquepaque Courtyard for the Festival of Lights where they have so many Luminaries lighting the walkways, it's almost as if it is the edge of daylight instead of completely dark. The Festival of Lights is a one day event honoring those who have survived cancer in any form. If you are ever in Arizona, visiting Sedona is a MUST!!

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely~Lesperance
Justin, me, Mylia & Tanya 11/2012

9. & 10. Jimmy & Family ~ Yeah, I know, this is where I get all sappy. But it is true. I LOVE being with my family. There were a few years where we were all spread out so far across the country, I didn't think I would ever be able to see them very often. Justin & Tiffany live in Texas, they are the farthest away, and I MISS them and think about them all the time. Mylia & Cheyenne live in Maryland, not so far now that we have a reliable vehicle, but I still don't see them as often as I'd like. I guess I'm in the same boat as many other mother's whose children really did *fly the nest*, LOL!! Tanya is just 3 streets away, and even though I see her more frequently than the others, I still fantasize of having us all living closer together.

Picture Credit Vickie McNeely Lesperance
This is 5 of 7 granddaughters and my great niece
Cheyenne (with Riley my great niece on her lap) Cassandra, Taya, Alanna, & Micheyla. Ravyn was tired and didn't want her picture taken, LOL! And Angel couldn't come from Michigan

We were able to all get together for Momma's memorial back in November, but before that it was over 15 years since we ALL had been together at the same place at the same time. I don't know how we'd figure out how to live closer to each other. Justin has a great job at Lufkin Industries and Mylia works for NASA in Maryland. At any rate, I'm hoping things will somehow work out where we can all get together for family vacations or holidays or something every few years... 15 years is just too long between all of us getting together.

So there you have this week's version of Ten Things Thursday. I hope I didn't bore you too badly and you'll come back next week to see what I come up with. I'm thinking maybe my 10 favorite flowers, or 10 things I dislike, or how about the 10 tech toys I have on my wish list? LOL!!!


  1. I love San Francisco. One of my favorite places to visit. Lived in Sand Diego when I was young. I love the beach too. I have visited Arizona but it was driving and we stayed in Page,Arizona in 2011 and visit the 4 corners. I love to drive to different places. :) Thanks for sharing. :)

  2. I love your list! I grew up outside of San Fran and live in Flagstaff these days, so a few familiar places :)

    Here are my ten places!

  3. Thanks for this! These all look like beautiful places and I've never been to any of them!

  4. Oh...well... except for the beach! I have been there! But being a Texan I've only been to the Gulf of Mexico (Galveston or Padre Island) a few times.