New Adventure – Puzzle Me

Adventures become a venture – creating puzzles from my travel photos.

“This Was So Much Fun.”

Ever wonder what to do when you have company and it gets dark, and everyone’s on their cell phone except you?

Our son and his girlfriend came this weekend, and I set up a mat and got out a simple, 300 piece puzzle and started working on it. Soon all four of us were thoroughly engaged. 

My son said, “This was so much fun. I haven’t done a puzzle since I was a kid.”

First Three Puzzles

Puzzle
This picture of the Double Take Rose  from the Woodlake Rose Garden is now a puzzle.

His reaction inspired me to create some puzzles from a few of my photos and give them as gifts and also try to sell them.  It’s easy to do, and not too expensive. The price to purchase them is about the same as I’ve found in stores.

Puzzles come in several shapes and sizes.

Since I use my iPhone for taking photographs most of the time, I’m limited to creating small puzzles. Now I have a great excuse for sorting through all my photos and pulling out ones with better resolution. 

Puzzle
Sedona, AZ Bell and Courthouse Rocks

What Do You Think?

To purchase puzzles, click here.

Biltmore House a 175,00 Square Foot Home

Imagine living in a house with 65 fireplaces.

One of the largest mansions in California, Hearst Castle at 70,000 square feet, is a pittance of the size of the Biltmore House in Ashville, NC.

Biltmore frontVince and I are grateful to our fun Diamond Resorts hostess, Chastity, for the opportunity to see this magnificent home which is still owned by the descendants of George Vanderbilt.

Neither of us had seen snow for a while, so getting up in Gatlinburg, TN to heavy flurries excited us until the cold wind hit.

Gatlinburg

It didn’t bother any of the stylishly dressed mannequins inside the Biltmore Estate. Scattered among the antiques which are original to the home, each room on the main floors is “hosted” by models wearing clothing from the movie, “Titanic.”

Biltmore

As part of our special Diamond Resorts Events package, we also got to go behind the scenes at the Estate. All of us on the tour opted to stay off the roof, which was the tour our hosts had planned for us. Our guide, Ruth Ann, gave us a choice and showed us behind the scenes in the guest bedrooms, storage rooms and staff quarters instead.

BiltmoreIf you are wondering, the cylindrical item on the table is a vacuum cleaner.

In the George Vanderbilt’s era, the women’s guest rooms did not have access to a sink in the bathroom. Would you like to know why?

Of course, you would.

Women didn’t turn on their own water. It was work, so female guests had attendants do it for them. Mr. Vanderbilt wanted his female guests to be pampered and have the water brought to their rooms. Male guests had sinks in their bathrooms.

The guest bathrooms did have toilets and large tubs. Some women of that era did not think it was good manners to have a toilet inside the house. Those guests received a chamber pot instead.  We saw where all they stored all the old pots. 🙂

Since the family still owns this home, all the furniture has stayed with the house, and believe it or not, there’s not enough room to display it all. So some of it is kept in the fourth-floor bedrooms. One of the rooms was also used to film  the movie “Private Eyes” starring Don Knotts and Tim Conway.

BiltmoreWe spent time at the grand staircase talking about the chandelier, which is 50 feet tall and weighs 1,700 pounds. One bolt keeps it from tumbling down on your head.  If you zoom in on this picture you can see that the bolt is not on exactly straight on center.

Biltmore

The reason for that is because the Biltmore is on a fault line. In case of an earthquake or another disaster, the chandelier is able to move around on that attachment.

BiltmoreEventually, it will scrape off all the paint up there, so if it looks like you have dandruff when you walk underneath the chandelier, it is probably just flecks of paint. By the way, all the lights are still replaced the same way they did them in 1895. Brave workers use a whatchamacallit to drop the lights in place. They don’t screw into a socket.

Biltmore

Check out the library on the main floor, with 23,000 volumes all handpicked by Mr. Vanderbilt. Private eye, Don Knotts, discovered a few of the books missing when he got to tour the home. Sure enough, the family found those missing books at auctions and repurchased them.

Biltmore

This is Marsha Ingrao reporting as accurately as my brain remembers the fascinating trivia I learned at the Biltmore Estate. I hope that you enjoyed your brief tour.

For more walks check out:

 

8 BENEFITS TO BECOMING A TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHER

Dennis Scott Carruthers contacted me by email asking to do a guest post on Always Write. I checked out his website, http://www.carruthersphoto.com/. Even though I’m a bit envious, I loved his work. See if you feel the same way.

travel photography

8 BENEFITS TO BECOMING A TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHER EVEN THOUGH YOU ARE AN AMATEUR

by D. Scott Carruthers

DO YOU LOVE TAKING PICTURES?

Becoming a travel photographer is one of the most exciting career paths any budding photographer can take. As commercial flights get cheaper and traveling is more emphasized as a hobby rather than a luxury, more photographers find themselves wanting to pursue their passion for images and explore unknown parts of the world.

In this post, we will be discovering the eight benefits of becoming a travel photographer. Read more at https://marshajustwrites.com/travel-photography/

What’s Oddball in Las Vegas?

Nothing

That’s the real answer. Everything here is normal no matter how weird it might seem anywhere else in the world. Umbrellas on the ceiling?

oddballs in Las Vegas
Why Not? Rain expected in Las Vegas?

It’s EDC, Electric Daisy Carnival, weekend. Vince thought it would make it even weirder than normal, but I think not.

These attractive giants posed with others in various outfits all along the strip. They all featured the headdress and feathers, but the rest of the costumes varied. The first ones we saw just had on daisies and little panties. Vince would have preferred them.

These girls were more demure.What was odd is that one of my friends asked if I was really that blond! Sorry, I forgot my feathers!

oddballs in Las Vegas

Too hot for you? It was 110+ while we were out there.

Heady here looks a little more modest but I remember when red and maroon did not go together. Why would you buy this blouse if you live in Vegas? It looks like crushed velvet. Oh… It’s a dress? Whew! What has happened to fashion sense? What’s up with that neckline? Yikes.

The next fashionista wears the same high neckline. We did not see anyone on the streets wearing tops with a high neckline. Again, the heat must have gone to her head and she sports a bright red bag to clash with her textured top.oddballs in Las VegasThe next young man has his own fashion problems.

oddballs in Las Vegas

I knew smalls meant underwear in Australian, so I texted this pic to Carol. She informed me that his smalls had ripped. Poor guy.

That’s all that was odd in Las Vegas – that I could photograph anyway.

oddballs in Las VegasFor more Oddballs visit Cee Neuner’s Oddball Challenge

 

Best Advice for Living a Full LIfe

Cee’s Oddball Photo Challenge

Best Advice
“Your world is a living expression of how you
are using—and have used—your mind. ” Earl Nightingale

“Earl Nightingale was an American radio personality, writer, speaker, and author, dealing mostly with the subjects of human character development, motivation, excellence and meaningful existence; so named as the “Dean of Personal Development.” Wikipedia

The statue stands guard on the steps of the Canopy Cathedral at Longwood Gardens.

Related Posts from Longwood Gardens

Where to Find a Window Wonderland
How to Tour Longwood Gardens Like an Expert
September Garden Challenge
How Pierre Du Pont Turned a “Bad Investment” Into a Landmark