"Following where my camera leads me!"

"Following where my camera leads me!"

Monday, June 21, 2021

my magnolia

 Last week we went over to visit "my magnolia". She lives in a public park, so she really isn't mine at ALL, ha ha LOL! But I still call her "my magnolia" and love to visit her. She is so big and pretty!

She is always happy to hold my hats or scarves, so I can make pictures! LOL

There weren't too many blooms yet, but I snapped a few:

My old hat.....been on lots of adventures with me! LOL

Arm candy, LOL!
 This was my first time ever to wear these. My Mother gave them to me years ago. She said they were "bakelite" or something, I don't know what that is, have not researched it yet. They are really  hard plastic.

I had fun posing in the tree. LOL! Well I guess I was feeling very "Seventies" that day, ha ha---I had on my embroidered bell bottoms, hippie shoes, floppy hippie hat, blue nail polish and loose cotton top. Remember when we called blouses like this "smock tops", anyone remember? Or maybe to be a real smock top---it had to have front pockets??? I think I forgot to put my mood ring on! LOL

old brown leather clogs.....so comfortable!!

See ya next time, Magnolia!

Thursday, June 10, 2021

plantation hiking


It was my birthday!

I got lots of fun and pretty cards! And gift cards! (so fun to spend! LOL)

and presents! I got this vintage black pocketbook:
fun summer shoes!

Fun paperdolls:

(remember when little girls wore pretty little dresses like these?)

old fashioned fun

a vintage classic movie! Yay!

..........and lots of really really neat BOOKS! I will show you all of them later on this week

And my choice for my birthday this year was the same as last year........I wanted to walk the gardens at the old plantation. It dates back to 1672 and is Named after the huge creamy white blooms on the local Magnolia trees.

So..........off we went!

the original plantation had almost 2000 acres. 

a quick stop to say "hi" to the little animals in the petting zoo
cute prairie dog popping up!

strutting chickens!

(below) making friends with a deer

Generally I don't like zoos and animals in any captivity....but these are ones who have been hurt or lost their parents as babies, and they are taken care of here.

"Howdy Bloggers!" LOL

The elegant old home and me showing y'all my birthday dress!--PERFECT choice for that day---it was a sweltering 90 degrees out and so so humid. My dress is breathable cotton and was so loose and comfortable!


so many pretty flowers here-- boxes, hedges, big pots,  and hangers and terraces and gardens and out in the wild too!

The house was built in 1873, and is the third one built here. The first two were both destroyed by fire, the second one during the Civil War.
Thomas and Ann Drayton made the first gardens here, around the time their home was built in 1680 or so. They named the garden "Flowerdale".
this statue stands in Flowerdale

this bench is between two very old trees in Flowerdale

the Flowerdale garden and the home itself was badly damaged in the Revolutionary War. The Draytons fought against the British.

The home was later left to brothers John and Thomas Grimke from their Grandfather. (he was the great grandson of the original Draytons) The brothers were required to change their last name to Drayton, their patriarchal name in order to inherit the huge property.
elegant old Doric columns. If you climb the steps, you are up on a lovely piazza, where Mr. Front Porch and I spent a lovely anniversary evening years ago, enjoying the warm breezes and the loud calls (screeches! LOL) of the peacocks who roam the property freely!

Tragically, Thomas Drayton died on the steps here, trying to make it back after a bad hunting accident. So the entire plantation was inherited solely by his brother John, who really wanted nothing to do with it---he had been studying in England to become a pastor and have a church! I think he finished up his theology in New York and that is where he met the beautiful Julia Ewing, and he fell in love. She DID MARRY him, but she was NOT happy on this remote, hot, place, full of animals and BUGS and humidity and storms. She was a socialite from Philadelphia and loved being in the city!
That is why Reverend Drayton built these beautiful gardens (English Romantic style)---to try to ease her homesickness and enchant her to fall in love with the Lowcountry. It is said he wanted to "create Eden" here for her.

Here's an interesting path........shall we take it?

I love this pretty little gazebo!!

I couldn't resist photographing the bride on the long white bridge!

that is a WILD bouquet! I love it!

hello, dragonfly!!

I love how the bridge reflects in the dark water

Cypress knees......they are part of the cypress trees root systems

I love all the statuary here!

.......and I loved this babbling little brook that flowed into the lake here--such a peaceful sound!

day-glow green water here! LOL

Whats THAT??! is that a SNAKE?
Nope, I think it's just an anhinga bird.....we stood and watched him fish.......he completely disappears underneath the water, then comes back up for air. He was fun to watch!

I climb up to  get my picture made on this bridge every year!

thank goodness there ARE MAPS....a person could get lost on this huge place easily, and I've read plenty of stories of people WHO HAVE....

oooooooooooooo-Look who we spotted!

show us your TEETH! LOL

I love making pictures of alligators, and the lighting was so pretty for it that day

But .........then.............he took a sharp turn and headed directly right towards us!!

Here he comes!!!--pretty quickly too...

Not SURE what this gator was thinking, he definetly saw us!!---Mr. Front Porch thinks he was just trying to cross the path and get into the larger lake, whatever it was........THIS IS WHEN I skedaddled!! LOL

I went around and photographed him from the other side, LOL Wanted to make sure I wasn't in his path, LOL!

I love photographing the "gators"....but we are very careful, we do not feed or annoy or disturb them.......they are WILD ANIMALS. 
 Mostly they will leave you alone, but they are wild and can be unpredictable of course. Spring is also mating season and the females hatch their babies not long after. And never ever ever EVER should anyone have small children or small DOGS around them---they are opportunistic hunters/eaters and will grab so quick.

That's why I NEVER want to fall off this bridge--into this water, ha ha!!

"because I LIVE HERE,"says handsome gator!!

beautiful blue blooms ALL OVER!!
 the plantation is known for it's beautiful azaleas as well....but they were mostly done by May. We found only a few stray blooms here and there. Reverend Drayton is the one who introduced the azalea bushes to the United States.

this old plantation is full of ancient old trees--huge and stately--can you even imagine all the history they've seen?

the bench where Reverend Drayton prayed and composed his Sunday sermons

the Drayton vault. Beautiful carvings!

There are lovely flowers planted all along the banks of the river. They plant different ones each year, so you never know what you will see.

Lots of people out on boats enjoying the hot and sunny day

some of the first "tourists" to Magnolia, in 1870. Reverend Drayton opened it up to the public to raise money to keep it running as he went broke after the Civil War.

pretty lilies!

I was so glad I had packed a hat and my "sunbrella", LOL! After hiking around for a few hours out in the hot sun---ANY SHADE is very welcome.

About this time......I was hot and ready for a break, so we visited the gift shop! It was nice and FROSTY in there! LOL

Pretty books and lots of tea sets, large and small!

Pretty blue and white things!

beautiful dainty hankies!

scarves galore

The little racoon made this "painting"!

Lots of colorful and beautiful cards! we bought two....one for my birthday year, and one for our anniversary year, as we were celebrating that as well. Yep, we married on my birthday.

I love the stained glass window hangers, they are gorgeous.

Let's go walk through the conservatory.........

Steamy and humid in here.......the big fans help SOME. LOL!

There are lots of beautiful orchids to see in here!

We went back the next day and walked through the Biblical Gardens:

So many beautiful blue hydrangeas everywhere!!!

this lovely lady stands in a tangle of trees and vines.....if you don't know to look for her---you would miss her. She is very shy.

We took the nature train ride through one of the many swamp areas.

He blends in so well!

The swamps are full of life---egrets, owls, herons, wood storks, eagles, anhingas, otters, alligators, turtles, racoons, a few bobcats, and of course, snakes.

Here are some of the old slave cabins. Big plantations like this one probably had 250 to 300 enslaved people during the "Carolina Gold" rice planting era.

The cabins were "duplexes" and two families occupied  them, one family on each side. 

the last cabin there on the end, on the right, was occupied until 1999!

these slanted ramp things are built for the alligators to sun themselves on and they love them and use them!

Another bride on the bridge:

photographers busy taking pictures of the wedding couple

I'm so glad y'all came along with us today and hope you enjoyed seeing all the pretty sights!