Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Fall Trip Planning

Hi Everyone.

I miss blogging!  I miss traveling!  I miss you guys!

Still simmering in the sauna that is summer in the Deep South.  70% humidity today.  Yuck!

But I digress.

The Good Deal Bus and I are on hold, just waiting to complete the kitchen renovation project.  It officially kicks off today with the delivery of the new cabinets.  Tomorrow the tearing-out and installation begins.  Then the counter-top templates get made Friday.  We are hoping for, at most, a one-week wait for the counter-top install.  Next is the tile and new light fixtures.  Then ……… I’m off!

Web Photo: Roadtrek on the Blue Ridge Parkway

It’s been so long since I planned my DC – Blue Ridge Parkway trip, I’ve forgotten some of the route and most of the stops.  So this morning, I’ve been reviewing my must-see list.  Here it is:


Appomattox Courthouse – VA

Fredericksburg/Spotsylvania – VA

Manassas – VA


Arlington House – VA

Prince William Forest Park – VA

Ford’s Theatre

FDR Memorial

Constitution Gardens

Korean War Memorial

LBJ Memorial Grove

National Archives

White House Visitors’ Center (I’ve toured the interior but didn’t get my National Park Passport stamp)

National Mall (again, seen these sites but didn’t have a Passport book then) – Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, Washington Monument. 

National Museum of American History

National Gallery

Clara Barton National Historic Site – MD


Skyline Drive

Blue-Ridge Parkway

Carl Sandburg Home - NC

For the DC portion, I plan to stay at Cherry Hill Park in Maryland.  That way, I can take the free shuttle that stops regularly at the campground and drops off at the metro station.  Perfect!

My focus will be the National Archives.  John and I spent maybe an hour there years ago and the experience just whetted my appetite.  I plan to spend some time at the National Gallery as well since it’s been too long between trips. 

I’ll likely move at a brisk pace getting up there, i.e. interstates.  But the way homeward should be leisurely.  I’m excited about the BRP part of the trip because, although we have been that way several times, we always had to keep moving in order to get back to home and office.  Now I can take my time and actually overnight ON the Parkway.  And I’ve never visited during leaf-changing season.

I’m prepping for the Civil War sites by watching the Ken Burns’ Civil War documentary.  I haven't seen all his film and I'm sure it would be hard to pick his best, but this is certainly a top contender.

My great-grandfather, William Oliver Wilson (first row, far left) was a Confederate soldier in the 13th Georgia Cavalry.  Thank goodness he made it!  Despite being shot at, he returned safely home and produced my grandfather 7 years later.  That's my grandfather (second row, far right).  

I've been trying to determine if W.O. Wilson saw any action at my battlefield stops.   

And I started teaching my first class yesterday so Chevy University is officially open for business! 

Little Schoolhouse on the Prairie

Trip suggestions, anyone?


  1. Sounds like a great tour! Now, get to work and finish that kitchen reno.

  2. Have you already visited the Holocaust Museum?

    The BRP should be spectacular. I'm planning to drive the Natchez Trace at peak leaf season once I get to Bayou Cocodrie NWR in October.

  3. We made that trip several years ago!! Fantastic trip, beautiful countryside and amazing history!! Enjoy!!

  4. I second Judy's vote for the Holocaust Museum--an amazing experience. Plan for comfort food after it. We greatly enjoyed out trip autumn down Sklyline Drive, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and the Natchez Trace. I hope yours is as good.

  5. Looking forward to tagging along with you. Hope the kitchen goes as planned.

  6. Best of luck with the kitchen remodel.

    Looks like a dream trip in the works. And a wonderful armchair adventure from my end. :)

    I love your little schoolhouse on the prairie photo. That's THE way to work!

  7. We were in DC in May...loved FDR's memorial...a lot. Korean was sort of weird...but cool. Have you done the Capital tour? Well worth it. Very organized and you'll learn a lot. Get there EARLY in the morning tho..can't wait for your trip. And sort of can't believe you're doing a kitchen overhaul and then you're LEAVING it! Wow!

  8. Sounds like a good trip. Looking forward to your adventure.

  9. On the BRP, just south of Asheville, at mile marker 408,is Mt Pisgah....our favorite mountain camp. You will find a campground that has plenty of space except for holiday weekends and leaf changing season, a wonderful restaurant with incredible views, a motel and little store. It's at 5,000 feet so the nights can be chilly. No electric hookups, though.

    Hope the new job is fun!

  10. If you can fit in Williamsburg, it's well worth the extra 2 hours east. You could spend 2-3 days there and not see everything. The James River plantations are all very close to there as well. Our country's history began there. Actually that could be a complete 'nother trip and then do the entire Tidewater area at the same time. Hoping the timing works out :-)

  11. I'm a Civil war buff and have visited many sites. If you are down by Richmond, stop at the Cold Harbor site. Its very small, but the trail thru the woods you can still see the trenches that Lee had is men dig to deliver cross fire. Also, Petersburg is pretty good to see the the battle of the crater. I visited Lexington and saw Stonewall Jackson's pre-war house and his grave site. Also, VMI is there and its worth getting there on the Fri pm to see the cadets march and visit the VMI and Marshall Museums. Also, Washington and Lee University is right next door and you can visit see Robert E Lee's grave / chapel

  12. I suggest you swing by Arizona and pick me up. That's going to be a great trip.

  13. What a great trip you have planned.
    I am still waiting for my camper but moving right along getting ready for it. I bought Valances today that should fit the windows just fine with maybe cutting them in half and doing a little sewing so I can open them in the middle.
    New kitchen sound wonderful.

  14. It's going to be great to see and do all that! Two pieces of irrelevant trivia. Stonewall Jackson had this delusion that one side of his body was heavier than the other, and if he raised his arm up, it evened everything out. Which is one reason his arm got shot. Originally the arm was not buried with the rest of him, but they were reunited in later years. Odd.

    Washington and Lee is worth just walking around. Out in the courtyard is the marker for Traveler, the horse that Lee so loved. I believe, but am not quite sure, that he was taxidermic and was on display, but sometime in the 60s or 70s (I think.) they took the skin and buried it with the rest of him. You need to tell me if the old fellow is still in the glass case on display or not. When I was there in the early 60s he was on display. I don't think I imagined the skin being interred, but I might have.

    Keep us informed on your travels. The whole kitchen thing sounds like a nightmare. You were just starting that the week we met! Akkkk!

  15. Good to hear you are back to traveling. I too will start hitting the road again on Sunday I have wanted to travel and hike the mountains of western North Carolina. I leave on my first excursion since Alaska and Canada. You may see another RT 190 on Skyline drive; Blue Ridge Parkway, Powhatan National forest and Indian Boundaries CG in Smokey National Park in Tennesse. Hope to hike the Appalachian trail and enjoy the cool weather.Humidity here in NC has been unbearable in August and September.
    Look forward to reading your blog again

  16. This sounds like a good regional trip. If you do end up down near Richmond at the Cold Harbor site, please let me know. Although, that was a random statement to come from someone who has just found your blog. :)


  17. I'm under the impression this trip has been cancelled; true or false? Are you OK?

    1. Hi Linda,

      I'm fine except I've got GO fever. Just waiting for the wall tile to be installed. Hopefully this week. Them I'm ...... outta here.

      Thanks for looking after me!

    2. Excellent! I'll be watching for updates from the road.


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