I’ve been enjoying sharing some of the short trips that my favorite boy toy and I take. I didn’t do enough of it last year, so thought I’d go back now and share some photos and stories.
Last May, my favorite boy toy and I took a trip to Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. This is the home of the Wyeth’s – N.C., Andrew, Carolyn, Jamie & others in the family. As artists, they were prolific and had a profound influence on art in America.
Unfortunately, the home, studio and grounds of N.C. Wyeth were tightly controlled. Photos were not allowed nor could we wander. We were required to stay in the group, so my pictures of the family compound are limited. This website has the pictures of what we saw, although the interior of N.C.’s studio (bottom right) was much darker and dingier than it appears in the photo.
N.C. encouraged creativity in the children. They were homeschooled and many evenings were spent in the front room, where the children played the piano and sang. He loved his children, although he did send them to his sister for art lessons to keep family peace.
N.C. was a large, burly man. His mother’s family came from Switzerland and to be honest, he looks very much like my Swiss great-grandfather with his round face and unruly hair. N.C. himself grew up in Massachusetts, having come to Chadd’s Ford to study with Howard Pyle.
We toured the museum afterwards and saw both originals and reproductions of the book illustrations that N.C. Wyeth was known for. While Howard Pyle’s work tended to be diginified and staid, N.C.’s work was bold, bright and full of action. The people were usually in motion, doing something.
My husband and I started the trip with a great deal of enthusiasm, but that went away quickly. We expected the Wyeth’s to be a bigger deal than they were. Chadds Ford isn’t ashamed of them, but apparently there are other things it would rather be known for.
Later we went driving back roads, looking for picturesque scenery. Although the rolling hillsides were nice, neither of us found anything to stop and take a picture of.
Our favorite part of the trip was the Pennsbury Inn, where we stayed with Chip & Cheryl Grono. It was beautifully decorated, quiet, and the grounds were gorgeous. We took a ton of pictures both days.
Last fall, I shared why I like staying at a bed & breakfast and why I would pay the extra to stay in one again.
Upon our arrival, we were given water bottles and access to a water cooler. Boy, did we appreciate that! It was already pretty hot and it was nice being able to refill the bottles so frequently.
Chip made us a wonderful breakfast each day, gave us advice where to go eat and what to see, and directions to get around. We also watched the birds at the bird feeder, squabbling over who got what.
I loved this hedge of roses! I took multiple pictures of it, plus of the roses too.
There was a huge botanical garden down the street. We didn’t take time to go through it. We learned later that our passes to our local botanical garden would have gotten us in for free. Had I known that, I would have gone through it even if it was a short visit.
One good thing about the trip is that it was only about 4 hours from home, provided we didn’t caught in traffic through Baltimore and D.C. (which we didn’t). That was good because my favorite boy toy was on call for jury duty that week and had to call each night for instructions. If he had to go in, we could have packed up and gotten home in time. He never had to appear, so I’m glad we didn’t rearrange our plans.
And that’s our trip! I’m glad we did it, but I don’t see us going back when there are so many other places we’d like to go see.
I am a backyard adventurer, philosopher and observer, recording my life in journals and photographs. Visit my blog at www.livingtheseasons.com or write me at dogear6 [at] gmail [dot] com.