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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

She’s A Maniac

I am, for all intents and purposes, a vacation maniac. If you want to torture me just take me someplace new and make me sit in a hotel room.

Sweet Boy and I arrived in Virginia on a Friday evening after a full day of travel. No sooner had I unpacked our toiletries Mr. Decor strolled in and said “How would you like to go…” The poor man didn’t even get to finish his sentence as I was already headed towards the door.

First stop, Langley A.F.B. to show us where he had been working these past few months. Langley is the oldest, continually operating base in the world. It is located at the end of the peninsula on the eastern coast of Virginia. I couldn’t take any pictures of his building (let’s just say his next door neighbor is NASA) but I did take a picture of a very pretty horse that was stabled on base.

Summer Vacation 2013 1041 He saved the best part of the Langley tour for last. Officer housing. He knows this is my favorite part. I never, ever tire of looking at houses.

Summer Vacation 2013 1082 Most of the high ranking officer housing residences were built in 1934.

Summer Vacation 2013 1085 They are high style examples of Tudor Revival. The walls are brick, while several of the doors and windows were trimmed in stone. Many of the roof gables on the side facades had diamond patterned brick work.

Summer Vacation 2013 1081-001You can find a great resource for a historical walking tour HERE.

Although I must clarify that to get onto Langley or any of the other sites I am sharing on this particular post you must have military access to the bases. For most of the population this is a “behind the scenes tour” that the general public cannot see.

Summer Vacation 2013 1084

From there we went to visit Fort Monroe. (Which the general public can now visit.) Although the area has roots from the colonial period, the base itself was built in 1819.  The area contains over 170 historical buildings including homes where Abraham Lincoln and other notable historical figures had stayed.

The base closed in 2011 and the buildings and homes are now for public sale. There were a number of homes that I was interested on INGALLS road.

I had a particular fondness for the building located at 20 Ingalls Road. Not just because that was the date I was born on, but because the turreted structure overlooked the Chesapeake Bay. I WANT it!

The sun was quickly setting and so it was back to the hotel. But Saturday was another day filled with sightseeing. It included a trip to the Norfolk Naval Station where the U.S.N.S. Comfort is docked.

Summer Vacation 2013 013 My favorite part of the day was this mermaid pointing us to Admirals Row. 

Summer Vacation 2013 038 In 1907 the world’s fair was held at Sewell’s Point, on Hampton Roads in Norfolk (which later became Norfolk Naval Base). It commemorated the 300th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown.

Summer Vacation 2013 015 The planners asked for each state in the union to contribute a building to the exposition. Sadly only  21 states responded. At the time of the expo some of the buildings offered exhibits on the states' history and industry while others were more like an embassy for visitors from each particular state.

Pennsylvania created more of a building. It is now used as a church.

Summer Vacation 2013 036North Dakota created an Arts and Crafts styled bungalow. It is now used as high ranking Admiral housing.

Summer Vacation 2013 033  Same with the Delaware House.

Summer Vacation 2013 017-001 West Virginia House

Summer Vacation 2013 018 Missouri House

Summer Vacation 2013 021

Virginia House

Summer Vacation 2013 028 It was a completely enchanting neighborhood and I now wish I had taken a picture of each building/house instead of just my personal favorites. 

Summer Vacation 2013 032

Then of course I had to jump out of the car to peek over a few fences to catch a glimpse of several fabulous secret gardens. Mr. Decor and Sweet Boy pretended that they didn’t know me.

But look? It was worth it, right?

Summer Vacation 2013 025 Even more goodness to follow,



Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

Great photos! I have always wanted to visit Norfolk!!!

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Oh my, I am with you, I would be in heaven walking around and seeing all of the beautiful homes and buildings. Great pics, thanks for the tour, I can't wait to see more. Hugs, marty

Vel Criste said...

Your not alone on this Laura!!!! Love the tour, thank you for sharing these and hope you have more vacation to come to share with us!

KaseyQ said...

Loooove! I lived in Williamsburg with my family while my stepfather worked for NASA out of Langley. I was about to start college when they started house hunting in the area and I remember going to Poquoson and I fell in love. There was something magical to me about seeing these homes tucked away in the forest and then looking past them and seeing the ocean right in their backyard!

I live in Richmond now and my parents live in Lovettsville (an hour outside of DC- my stepdad works at NASA HQ now) but we still go out to the eastern shore frequently. I think someday I’d like to retire in Williamsburg or Poquoson.

Looking forward to more pics! (P.S. There are so many “secret” gardens in Colonial Williamsburg- I used to sit on a little bridge over a stream in one of them and eat my lunch when I worked there- I hope you got to visit those!)

Rita C. said...

Wow, Laura! What a great virtual tour! I was hoping you photographed WV's house (my home state) - it looked very similar to its sister state, VA, only a little more casual with its seating porch, I noticed. :)
Great garden pictures too - loved it all! I need to put Fort Monroe on our list of short trips - thanks!

Craftymoose Crafts said...

Great post! I had to admit I had a little chuckle at the end when you reminded me of an "I Love Lucy" episode!

Pat@Life At Lydias House said...

Thanks for giving us a little peek too. I appreciate your extra efforts to get some photos to share! Looks like a really fun trip!

openid said...

For some reason I am having a difficult time with your blog and my laptop lately -- no pics are showing. :(
I will keep trying and be back. {Didn't want you to think I haven't been here.} Received your box of lovely gifts!
Your Friend,

openid said...

For some reason I am having a difficult time with your blog and my laptop lately -- no pics are showing. :(
I will keep trying and be back. {Didn't want you to think I haven't been here.} Received your box of lovely gifts!
Your Friend,

Louise said...

Oh my goodness, it is all so very beatiful, and yes, that garden was beautiful.

Surely you are destined to live at number 20 Ingalls Road?? Okay, I get how coming back to cookie cutter Az and 120 temps might have been a bit hard after that . . .

Karen Albert said...

Dear Laura what an amazing vacation. You really had the official grand tour!! Beautiful and educational!

2013 Artists Series

Bonnie said...

Wow, you made amazing pictures. I haven't been to Fort Monroe but was at Norfolk naval station recently for a wedding nearby and was amazed at all the power docked there.

This was a very interesting post. Wonderful houses and such a shame Fort Monroe is closed.

What is the Reve schedule? Did I misunderstand the debut date?

Have a great week.

openid said...

Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos of homes in Fort Monroe and Norfolk. I adore the mermaid! How special to find a home on Ingals Ave numbered with your DOB?
Keep the tours coming. I so enjoy them!
Your Friend,

Karin said...

Thank you so much for this post! My husband did a six week manning assist at Langley a couple of years ago and the kids and I went along (it was in the summer). We had the BEST time there, visiting all the places you mentioned. We went swimming almost everyday at the beach at Ft Monroe or further up the shore at Buckroe Beach. Last summer, we spent a year in Charlottesville, so got to revisit all those wonderful places many times, as well as DC. BTW,my son loved the harbor tour so much, we took it twice! My husband is trying to decide if he should retire this year (his 23rd year active duty) or continue for a few more years. After seeing this post and reminiscing, I'm going to talk to him about the possibility of one more assignment at Langley. What a great area! Love all your pictures. Thanks for posting! PS One of my all-time favorite furniture and antique consignment shops was in Newport News.

SheilaG @ Plum Doodles said...

Oh, my, all those gorgeous homes! I could spend hours wandering through them and daydreaming.