Happy 241st Birthday America!

On July 2, we visited the Keith House and Graeme Park.

Since the Declaration of Independence was actually made on July 2, 1776 it seemed like a good thing to do visiting a part of Colonial History 🙂

 

 

It was hot and humid but was worth the visit.  The Keith House housed both American and British troops during the War of Independence.  A lot of History passed the grounds of Graeme Park.

On July 4th I hung out with the Puppy and got our Patriotic look on!

Fireworks, bbq, family and friends…it was a great long weekend!

It’s Been 72 Years – Auschwitz-Birkenau

Today I remember the loss of Kazimierz Smoleń.  He died on January 27, 2012 at the age of 92.

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It is almost fitting this man of history died on the very day the Soviets liberated the Nazi Death Camp Auschwitz-Birkenau.  Kazimierz Smoleń was given the number 1327 when he was taken to Auschwitz in Poland.  He was housed in Auschwitz for 5 years.  In April of 1945 he was moved to another location.  He survived his 5 years of incarceration in the death camps.  He made it out of the Nazi’s vision which was nothing more than a twisted nightmare for millions of Jews, Catholics, Homosexuals, Disabled, Elderly and dissidents.  He survived.

Sadly, approximately 1.1 million others didn’t.  He dedicated his life to truth.  He shared his story so that others would be able to put a face to this mass murdering spree of the Nazis.

When those out there that like to pretend in some twisted world they live in that the extermination of Jews and others didn’t happen under Nazi rule.  Tell them Kazimierz Smoleń and other survivors out there like him would strongly disagree.

Learn from these atrocities.  Tell the world that violence isn’t the only way.

Women of History: Katherine Johnson

I was reading an article about the women who are portrayed in the movie “Hidden Figures”.  It made me sad.  In our patriarchal society it still exists that women are considered inferior.  Katherine Johnson is and was brilliant.  The vast public hasn’t heard of her until now because of the movie.

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Katherine Johnson and her peers were known as “Human Computers”.  She graduated college at the age of 18 when other African-Americans rarely went beyond the grade school level.  She lived in the segregate South.  She defied all odds.  She is amazing as she is brilliant!

To think of how many women have contributed to major moments in history only to be a small footnote.  It seems ridiculous to me in the 21st Century.

The more you know…

A Little Christmas To Start The Season – Part 1 – Hope Lodge

This weekend definitely held the Christmas Theme for us.  On Saturday, we went to Hope Lodge to share in a little Christmas Cheer…Colonial Style.

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The Volunteers who run this grand old mansion did an amazing job with decorating.  They covered all of the time periods that the house was in use.  From Colonial to Modern.

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Miss Erin dress up in Colonial garb to keep the illusion going.

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I love trains.  This everyone knows,  so to see a train going is aces for me.

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They even displayed metal trains from approximately 1920’s-1930’s.  It was a wonderful Time.

Kazimierz Smoleń Remembered Always

Today Auschwitz was freed.

The atrocities that were revealed to have happened shortly after the liberation of thousands of Jews of Europe shocked the civilized world.  How could anyone do to another person what the German Hierarchy had done to the Jews, Catholics, Homosexuals, Elderly, Sick and mentally/physically infirm people?  Singled out above all were the Jewish of Europe.

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Kazimierz Smoleń survived the death camp and spent the rest of his life making sure that people didn’t forget what happened during World War II.

To survive was an amazing feat in itself but he lived to be 92 years old (we lost him in 2012).  A chance at a second lifetime.  I say a second lifetime because Kazimierz Smoleń didn’t know if he would live through the death camp.  He dedicated himself to sharing with the world.  Bringing out the harsh realities from the shadows and into the light with the hope of ending this type of darkness that live in men’s hearts.

Our world is plagued by people like Hitler, Goebbels and Mengele.  We have daesh who propose they are keeping the word of their God, they are NOT.  The warlords in Africa who wipe out entire villages of people like locusts in a wheat field.  These groups kill for made up reasons justified by themselves as the right thing.  Hitler and his henchmen had that same ideas.  Now in the Middle East we have shells of cities because of daesh.

Kazimierz Smoleń lived and died trying to change the world in a good and positive way.  Let us all believe what he believed.  That goodness does exists.  That the evil in this world perpetrated by selfish, ego driven, imbecilic morons will not last much longer.  That the people who are victims of these destructive idiots will find the salvation that Mr. Kazimierz Smoleń found that day when Auschwitz was freed.

Kazimierz Smoleń I will always remember you and your bravery in the face of evil!

1776 Lives!!

Sunday saw bright sunny skies and a balmy 60 degrees.  It was the perfect kind of day to take in the yearly Revolutionary War Battle Re-Enactment.

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What I love about the Re-Enactments is the fact they stay in character and live that way all weekend.  It so much fun to speak with General Washington as he surveys his troops.

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It doesn’t hurt the mood when it’s autumn with the vibrant colors accenting the encampment.

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They held weapon demonstrations before the skirmish.

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It turns out Ben Franklin is quite the shooter.  The lady in non-period garb is the safety inspector.

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In the center, guiding the American Militia is General George Washington.

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The British won the skirmish but not the war and the Americans lived to re-enact another battle!

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If you get a chance visit Hope Lodge.  It’s an historic treat!

A Visit To Ralphie’s House aka The Christmas Story House

This past weekend I had a big birthday.  One of those kinds of Birthday’s that you do something expensive.  I had my choice of what I wanted to do.  ‘A party?’…No thank you.  ‘A Trip?’…yes a trip might be nice.  ‘Hawaii?’…no I was just at the beach.  ‘You like Disney World’.  Yes I do, but I’ve been there many times (although it is a Magical place I will return too).  ‘Where would you like to go?’ my wife asked me.  I got on Trip Advisor and that’s when it hit me, Ralphie’s House!!!  She said, ‘Are you sure?’.  Yes I was sure so she packed me in the car and off we went to the land of Drew Carey….CLEVELAND!

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The Christmas Story House is located in Cleveland, Ohio.  It was so much FUN.  Frank Smith, our tour guide, was filled with one story after another about the making of the film, the cast and the neighborhood.  He had us laughing and smiling the whole time.

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There whole house was refurbished to the 1940’s look after it was purchased by Mega Fan Brian Jones.  He and his wife made this a really awesome place to visit.  Fun and exciting and well…FUN!

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There wasn’t anything that I didn’t experience in this house.  The Lamp in the window (you can touch practically everything).  The Red Ryder BB Gun, sit on the sofa while holding a ‘blue ball’ or stand by the Christmas tree and get your picture taken.

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I even got under the sink where Randy waited for Daddy to come home and kill Ralphie, lol.

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I’m making this face because Mrs. Schwartz is yelling at me on the phone.  When we were out in the back yard I could hear a train whistle of in the yonder…just like in the movie!

If you are in Cleveland, around Cleveland or thinking of something to do…go to Cleveland and see Ralphie’s House.  Tell Frank I said Hi!!!