Sunday, October 23, 2011

Old New Friends, and the Road Ahead...

Have you ever just met someone you felt as though you'd known for a lifetime? Someone who makes you consider the possibility of reincarnation, because you just know you were sisters in another life?

Such was the case when I met Ann "in person" for the first time last week. We'd chatted online and via telephone for some time, and regularly read the details of each others' lives on facebook, and I'm sure were both hoping we'd hit it off as well in person as we do in the virtual world (especially considering this road trip we're planning!) Anywho, I'm happy to report I found Ann even more delightful once I'd actually met her, and I think (I hope) she feels the same.

Some weird coincidences: We're the same sign (Leo), with our birthdays just days apart. We have the same middle name (Louise). We love art and collecting, and have many of the same friends in common. We share the same dream vacation, and a love of animals (more on this later as we determine whether a visit to the Best Friends shelter in Utah is possible along the way).

In short, sisters in another lifetime. ;)

The week went by far too fast, although we did manage to squeeze quite a bit in, beginning with a visit to the National Christmas Center in Paradise, PA. A few pics follow...

We also did a fair amount of driving country backroads, where we came across sights like this one - a one room Mennonite schoolhouse...

And even a covered bridge...

So cool. :)

There was dinner at mutual friend Jennifer MacNeill Traylor's house (delicious fajitas and margaritas) and far too many lunches to suit my weight loss goals, hehe. (Back on track today!)

The one thing we didn't do was map out the Road Dust and Wanderlust itinerary! So that's a goal for the coming weeks. :)

To that end, if there's a fabulous, quirky, or offbeat landmark or site you'd like to recommend, please DO! We won't be able to hit them all, but we're relying heavily on local knowledge when it comes to determining a route, and "must-see" stops. So please jump in with your thoughts. The trip is just seven short months away...

In the meantime, it's back to South Carolina for Ann, and back to the studio for me!

Thanks for your interest in our adventures, and I will try to post more often as the journey approaches.

Happy Travels!
♥ Carolee

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Excitement is Building!

Welcome to the Road Dust and Wanderlust blog! Two friends (Ann and Carolee), two to three months, one vehicle, about twenty five states, visiting artist friends and their studios along the way, and documenting it all as we go!

The idea came about when I randomly posted on facebook I was feeling the need for a road trip, and my friend Ann responded. Things sort of snowballed from there, as we discovered we both shared the same dream vacation; see the US at a leisurely pace largely via two lane back roads, out west one route, all the way up or down the coast highway, and back another route. Ann has actually seen most of the states, with the exception of seven in the Pacific Northwest, and they're all on our list. I haven't seen quite as many, but I'm getting there!

Granted, the trip is ten months away, and I'm normally a "wing it" kind of gal, but something of this proportion deserves some advance planning. And the planning is a big part of the fun, yes?!

Soooooo, I have this map. It's big. As in don't-have-a-wall-big-enough big. So for now, it's taped to the dining room table. Which we never use unless we're entertaining, so it's fine there...

And as with ANY new surface in the house, Gwennie (or as we like to call her, The Cat Who Knows No Boundaries) has claimed it as her own.

Travel guides are arriving almost daily now, most of them FREE from tourist bureaus across the country. So many possibilities!

And I must share this incredible birthday gift from Ann - a Winsor Newton travel watercolor set. The entire thing is about half the size of a paperback novel, so can fit in almost any purse or tote...

Inside are a complete set of watercolors, a brush and two palettes. How cool is this!!? (Thank you, Ann!)

I want so badly to dive into them, but I'm being good and waiting, hehe. The plan is to keep a travel journal filled with watercolor sketches. :)

To that end, I've purchased a guide to art journaling - no time to really delve into it yet, but hopefully soon!

As the months pass, we'll be posting our approximate route as it evolves, and pinpointing "must-see" sites and stops along the way! We'll see friends and relatives, art acquaintances, as well as plenty of quirky, offbeat attractions.

We'd would also like to invite you to "follow" our little adventure here, and feel free to comment! (Feedback really does fuel a blog, hehe!)

Back very soon....

♥ Carolee