Monthly Archives: April 2013

Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., grounds close at 5:00 p.m.

Admission

Adults $8.00
Students and Seniors $6.00
Children Ages 5-12 $3.00
Children under 5 free

This is a lovely place to visit for the gardens obviously but there is an on site Queen Anne Victorian you can tour as well as the original Santa Anita Train Depot which gives you a chance to step back into time. 

One thing I definitely suggest is bring some bread or crackers because there is peacocks everywhere and they are friendly.  This is a great place to spend the day and just enjoy Southern California’s beautiful weather and experience nature at its best.

There is an upcoming event if you need additional reasons to go:


What to do this weekend? Try going to the Long Beach Antique Market

Admission $6.00 6:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Early Admission  $12.00 5:30 AM – 6:30 AM (For the hardcore shopper who wants to get first pick at all the goodies)

 

Children Under 12 Free

The Box Office closes at 2:00PM – Shop till 3:30 PM.

Free Parking –  Rain or Shine – No Pets Allowed

I have yet to make it to this particular event, but only because I want to go with some money to spend and that has yet to happen.  I have read many reviews about it and the people who have been, seem to go back again and again and almost seem addicted.  I fear this would be my fate as well.  If you are in the area, check it out and let me know what you think!!

http://www.longbeachantiquemarket.com/

 


Getting a clear view of the past

It never ceases to amaze me the clarity of many of the wonderful pictures being scanned in and distributed online for all to see.  It really gives you the opportunity to see how life was lived from day to day, outside of the usual posed for pictures.

Here is a gem I found of the lower East side of New York 1908:

Delancey Street

You can find a whole new collection recently added to the New York department of records website here: http://nycma.lunaimaging.com/luna/servlet/browseByCategory 

All of the pictures in this post are in New York.  I know I tend to be partial to Southern California as that is where I am from and still live today.  When I look at old pictures I try to take it all in, the architectures, the fashions, the cars or lack there of, the mentality or mind states of everyone, the conditions of the city.  It is amazing how far we have come in really a short amount of time. 

 


Another stunning Victorian home…the Morey Mansion

This house is one of my favorites that is only about ten minutes away from where I live now.  Located in Redlands, California, the Morey Mansion was once was used as a bed and breakfast but was recently sold to new owners who keep this gem all to themselves.  It is not available for tours or anything other than loving it from the street corner. 


Hollywood History

When Spanish explorers first entered the area now known as Hollywood, Native Americans were living in the canyons of the Santa Monica  Mountains. Before long, the Indians had been moved to missions and the land which Hollywood now occupies was divided in two by the Spanish Government. Acreage to the west became part of Rancho La Brea and settlements to the  East became Rancho Los Feliz.

By the 1870s an agricultural community flourished in  the area and crops ranging from hay and grain to  subtropical bananas and pineapples were thriving. During the 1880s, the Ranchos were sub-divided. In 1886, H. H.Wilcox bought an area of Rancho La Brea that his wife then christened “Hollywood.” Within a few years, Wilcox had devised a grid plan for his new  community, paved Prospect Avenue (now Hollywood  Boulevard) for his main street and was selling large  residential lots to wealthy Midwesterners looking to build homes so they could “winter in California.”

Prospect Avenue soon became a prestigious residential street populated with large Queen Anne, Victorian, and Mission Revival houses. Mrs. Daeida Wilcox raised funds to build churches, schools and a library and Hollywood quickly became a complete and prosperous community. This location of prime real estate was later named “Hollywoodland” in 1923.

In 1911, the Nestor Company opened Hollywood’s first film studio in an old tavern on the corner of Sunset and Gower. Not long thereafter Cecil B. DeMille and D. W.  Griffith began making movies in the area drawn to the community for its open space and moderate climate.

The Hollywood sign soon became an American cultural icon of movie stars and film location so it became an official landmark and the “land” was dropped in 1949.

Hollywood tidbits and facts:

In 1906, a streetcar line was constructed in the Hollywood district down the middle of “Sandy Road”. This lane was known as the “Rose City Line”. The establishment of the streetcar route facilitated the growth of the suburb of Hollywood.

In 1923, Harry Chandler, a real estate agent and investor built the famous Hollywood Sign to advertise the area “Hollywoodland”. The total expense for this advertisement was $21,000. Initially, it was built to last only for eighteen months. However, as of today, the Hollywood Sign has lasted for eighty years.

In 1939, four thousand twenty-watt bulbs were put to illuminate the signboard and a caretaker was appointed to maintain the same. The part of land, which included the “Hollywood” sign, was sold to the city of LA.

The alphabets of the signboard began to fall down. To restore the same, in 1978 an auction of the alphabets was held by Hugh Hefner, founder of the magazine “Playboy”. This auction was held for a period of three months. Alice Cooper, American rock singer, sponsored the alphabet “O”. Gene Autry and Paul Williams sponsored the alphabets “L” and “W” respectively.

In 1995, a trust known as “Hollywood Sign Trust” was set up to maintain the Hollywood sign.

 Mary Pickford

Hollywood is just as interesting to visit today and the city’s culture and crazy crowds makes for interesting people watching.


I looooove Lucy!!!!

I looooooove Lucy!!!!

When I was a young child something that I shared with my mother and grandmother is that we loved to watch I love Lucy.  She was a wild woman who would do anything to make her audience laugh.  As an adult I can honestly say Lucy’s character was very catty, a tad bitchy, especially to her good friend Ethel, but still a good wife and mother.  I still enjoy watching I Love Lucy episodes to this day with my daughter!

Lucille Ball was quite the actress and comedian well outside of her part in the I Love Lucy show.  Lucille Desiree Ball was born on April 6, 1911 in Jamestown, New York.  Her career started in 1933 when she appeared in The Bowery and 28 other films by 1936 including Moulin Rouge and The Three Musketeers before her name started to appear in the credits.  Not many people know but Lucille Ball was one of the original Follies Girls aka Ziegfeld Follies.  They were in a series of Broadway shows but were known for the many beautiful girls in very risqué costumes!

Check this out, what a lineup!!

I love Lucy most when she is playing something that is outside of her I love Lucy shows.  She is a great actress and I adore her opposite Bob Hope.

I do have a movie suggestion, a must see of early Lucille Ball films and that would be “Having a Wonderful Time” (1938) starting Ginger Rogers.  Lucy plays a college crazy woman called, “screwball”.  It’s quit fitting for Lucy and she is her usual wild self.  I also want to add that although she is known for her wild red hair, she has also been a blonde and a brunette.

Lucy is obviously beautiful and known for her comedy, but I have seen her in a serious roll, much later in her career, which left me speechless.  She was so incredibly talented and diverse.  She stared in a TV movie in 1985 called Stone Pillow.  In this movie she plays a homeless woman who befriends a young social worker.  Another Lucy must see.

Stone Pillow (1985) Poster

I hope you enjoyed my tribute to Lucille Ball!


Another local Victorian must see, I give you….Kimberly Crest house in Redlands, CA

Another local Victorian must see, I give you….Kimberly Crest house in Redlands, CA

This house is truly stunning and available for tours and events.  I have only taken the tour here but they recently had a “Princess at the Castle” event that is every little girls dream.

The beautiful home and lovely gardens are worth going for on their own.  Redlands is a beautiful town and is rich with Sothern California history as many early Victorian settlers put Redlands on the map and there are quite a few Victorian homes in the area.

Kimberly Crest was built in 1897 and is a French chateau style home.  There are 3 levels to this home, first for entertainment, second for family living, and third for servants and additional living space for guests.

The house at Kimberly Crest is open for public tours Thursday, Friday and Sundays from 1:00-3:30p.m. with tours starting approximately every 30 minutes. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for seniors or students and free for children under 5. No reservations are required for groups of less than 10 individuals.

kimCrstHsGrassWeb5x11

Contact info: 1325 Prospect Drive, Redlands, CA 92373   Phone: 909-792-2111

If you ever get a chance to check this out, I’d love to hear about your visit!!!


Happy Birthday Charles Chaplin

Happy Birthday Charles Chaplin

644664_455807037821902_2072128449_n[1]

Where does one begin when trying to sum up Charlie Chaplin’s career?

Sir Charles Spencer “Charlie” Chaplin was born on this day, April 16, 1889 in London, England.

Charlie Chaplin, considered (and for good reason) to be one of the most pivotal stars of the early days of Hollywood and film.  Charlie Chaplin was an actor, comedian, director, producer, writer, musician and music composer whose work in motion pictures spanned from 1914 until 1967.

He is most recognized as an icon of the silent film era, often associated with his popular “Little Tramp” character; the man with the toothbrush mustache, bowler hat, bamboo cane, and a funny walk.

Here is an interesting trivia fact that I had no clue about: “On March 3, 1978, his dead body was stolen from the Corsier-Sur-Vevey cemetery. It took until 18 May when the police found it.” – OH MY  I know silent films aren’t for everyone but if you ever want to give it a shot, you will not be let down with Mr. Chaplin.  He is a great comedian who can make you laugh without saying a word, and that’s saying something.

Top 5 Charlie Chaplin movies I suggest:

1: The Great Dictator (1940)

2: The Gold Rush (1925)

3: The Circus (1928)

4: The Kid (1921)

5: Modern Times (1936)

If you are in the Los Angeles area, I would suggest looking up the Egyptian Theatre for silent film screenings as I have seen first hand Chaplin films on original 8mm along with commentary.  It was a fabulous experience and definitely a great way to view the classics!


The ultimate Victorian experience! Stay at the Upham Hotel in Santa Barbara, CA

The ultimate Victorian experience! Stay at the Upham Hotel in Santa Barbara, CA

I had the most wonderful experience last year to stay at this divine Victorian hotel The Upham Hotel, opened for business in 1871, blocks from State Street, the main street in down town Santa Barbara.  We did not use our car the entire weekend and was able to walk to anything we needed, including a .50 trolley that will take you straight to the beach during the day.

This site is just jaw dropping and I couldn’t sleep here either, I found myself exploring the grounds at 3am and the on site gardens is a great place to sit and enjoy the complementary wine and crackers every evening.  There is also complementary cookies and milk before bed in the main house. The rooms are simple but beautiful and my husband and I were spoiled with our own private side patio which gave us our own space outside of just our room.  I recommend staying here if you ever go to Santa Barbara and just want to explore the local downtown scene.

Then:

The Upham Hotel, at 1404 De la Vina Street

Now:

Here is a link to a wonderful BIO of the Upham:

http://www.independent.com/news/2012/jul/23/upham-hotel/

1404 De La Vina Street, Santa Barbara CA 93101


Classic Movie review- Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Classic Movie review- Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

I was excited to watch for the first time the original Bride of Frankenstein last night during my usual battle of insomnia.  This movie was great, full of humor and depth as I enjoyed the deeper moral value of accepting someone regardless of physical or mental disability.  When Frankenstein made friends with the man in the forest, it warmed my heart, and then broke it when he was discovered for forced to continue his search to fit in and live in peace.  Then, just what every man needs(chuckle), the insane doctor makes him a mate! Elsa Lanchester is excellent and beautiful and loved her for this part!  This is on my list of favorite Cult Classics!


Check out your local artwalk!

Ok, so I am a little late on this but in time I will be on top of things! This past weekend was the Pomona Artwalk in downtown Pomona where the art culture is rich in the Inland Empire.

If you are in the IE and want something to do, every second Saturday of the month Pomona has an art walk that is full of galleries having shows, providing snacks and sometimes wine, local bars, and lots of restaurants to grab something to eat during your journey.  It is several blocks of all of the above and a guaranteed good night for all.  There is also local events all month long in the downtown art district  like the weekend Farmers Market and every last Saturday of the month is the Pomona Night Out Classic Car show.  Several times a year there is the Antique Rows collectors Street Faire (Next one is on May 25, 2013 8am-3pm). (This is so dangerous for me not to spend every last time on the treasures found here!

http://pomonaartscolony.com/pages/blast.html

http://www.downtownpomona.org/


Fun and Funky Vintage

Sometimes I like to just to a search for all things weird and old, today I found these:

Victorian thriller? haha

Victorian batman? or devil

1910 electrical bath? wow

1911 first diving suit


Los Angeles, a long time ago…..

Things in Los Angeles change so quickly. Even in my short 33 years in this area, I can easily find myself lost in familiar areas as development is like an infectious disease.  I only say that as I am a fan of restoration and not demolition and re-development. *sigh*

Here is a picture of the late 1890s on Third Street.  It’s breathtaking!

Here is something you may or may not know but you can still experience Victorian neighborhoods in Los Angeles.  To my surprise and discovery last year of the Angelino Heights!!

http://historicechopark.org/id58.html

Angelino Heights, located to the east of Echo Park Lake and north of the 101 Freeway, remains a unique and remarkably well preserved section of Victorian-era Los Angeles.

There is over 50 jaw dropping Victorian homes


Pasadena Doo Dah Parade…Not vintage but still FUN!!

Pasadena Doo Dah Parade…Not vintage but still FUN!!

I’m not sure if you have ever been to the Doo Dah Parade but it is definitely NOT your typical parade, anyone can enter and pretty much anything goes (while still remaining appropriate for families).  If you decide to go its on April 27, 2013 in Pasadena this year and bring your pack of tortillas!!!


Vintage loving things to do this weekend in Los Angeles!

Vintage loving things to do this weekend in Los Angeles!

Calling all nerd and living history buffs!!

Warning!! Reservations required!!

Admission for attendees is $30.00 for the General Audience and $15 for children 6 to 10 years of age $22.50 for Museum Members and $7.50 for member children 6 to 10 years of age. Children under 6 are always free. Reservations are required. Tickets go on sale Friday, March 1. Call the museum offices at 323-225-2700 ext 223 for reservations.