Merry Christmas to all!

Neek sez:  Lex, Sar and I would like to wish everyone a very Merry and Safe Christmas!  The following are photos from a recent trip to King Gillette Ranch near Malibu, California.  It was the one time home of the inventor and seller of the Gillette Safety razor, King Gillette (his actual name).  His fame was to create the thin, inexpensive, disposable blade of stamped steel. 

The mansion was built in the late 1920’s by renowned architect, Walter Neff.  It had changed hands a number of times after Gillette’s death.  Once being owned by Bob Hope, Claretian Order of the Catholic Church, Elizabeth Prophet, and Soka University of America who had opposition from the residents of the area on its planned expansion.  The residents sought to protect the Chumash ancestral sites as well as the nature habitats and ecology of the area.  King Gillette ranch was purchased jointly for $35 million by the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority, National Park Service, Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and California State Parks, who then made it available for public use.

Hope you enjoy it.

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2020 Downtown Disney and Knott’s Berry Farm Marketplace

Lex sez:

It’s the middle of summer.  The scorching heat of the southern California sun is driving us crazy.  Our normal knee-jerk reaction would be to get out and have fun.  But with social distancing measures still necessary in the middle of a pandemic, is fun still possible?  Neek, Sar and I set out for Downtown Disney, determined to find out!

Continue reading

Happy 4th of July!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful and safe 4th of July at home!  Here are some photos of a day trip that we took to Placerita Canyon at “Oak of the Golden Dream” in the Santa Clarita Valley in Southern California.  It’s where gold was first discovered in California when it was Mexico’s territory.  Francisco Lopez discovered the gold on March 9, 1842 under an old Oak tree.  It pre-dates the John Marshall discovery at Sutter’s Mill which was in 1848.  

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The Tataviam people who had originally lived in the area 

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The murals are located in a storm drain that you need to access to see the Oak tree

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Stay strong and safe!

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Take care Everyone!

 

 

 

Old California

We’ve always been fascinated by the tales of old California.  People coming from all over the world in search of gold and silver, fertile lands to farm, or just to create a home for a new generation of Californians.  

Lex, Sar and I visited the Ojai Museum in Ojai, California just recently.  Ojai is a unique little sanctuary of resort spas, a small shopping precinct, a world famous music festival, well-known spiritual center, and was home to a now deceased centenarian artist, Beatrice Wood.

To get to know the area, we visited the Ojai Museum housed in a former Catholic Church.  It was charming but also very informative.  We were delighted by the exhibit that is currently on display about the former inhabitants of the area.

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Mama Dada?

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The founder of AARP (American Association of Retired Persons)  She decided to create the organization when she observed a retired teacher living in a chicken coop because it was all that she could afford on her pension.

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Remnants and relics of the former Catholic Church

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Edward Libbey founder of the Libbey Glass Company was fond of Ojai and helped in beautifying the downtown district in the 1920’s

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A special exhibit of the valley inhabitants during the Rancho Era and their descendants

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The Legend of Zorro was inspired by Joaquin Murrieta

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Yes, a relative of that famous Cuban Congo player, Desi Arnaz of “I Love Lucy” fame.

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A hair wreath

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Tales of Old California and perhaps some gossip?

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Well, we hope you enjoyed this visit as much as we did.  We couldn’t fit all of the wonderful exhibits in this post but perhaps we will visit again in the future.

Ojai Museum:

​Sun 12n-4pm, Tues-Sat 10a-4pm
Suggested donation: $5 adults, $1 children 6-18
Free: current members, under 6
and, through Labor Day,  military members and their families

Address: 130 W. Ojai Ave

That’s From Disneyland! – Disneyland Memorabilia Pop-Up Exhibit and Auction

Neek sez:

Every summer, my Mom and Dad would take us to Disneyland.  We had choices of visiting Knotts Berry Farm or Universal Studios or even Magic Mountain but Sar and I always choose Disneyland.

So much has changed at the park throughout the years and Lex, Sar and I have missed seeing some of the attractions from our childhood so when we heard that a Disneyland Memorabilia Pop-Up Exhibit was being held right nearby our home, we just had to visit.

Richard Kraft who is the collector partnered with Van Eaton Galleries to create a pop-up exhibit of his collection before it goes to auction.  The exhibit will be open from August 1 to August 26, 2018 and the auction will take place on August 24 to 26. Continue reading

Ruddy’s 1930’s General Store Museum – Desert Views Road Trip Part 4

Neek sez:

Located in the heart of Downtown Palm Springs is one of the most unique museums that we have ever encountered.

A fellow named James Ruddy had spent decades acquiring general store merchandise and memorabilia.  Some of the items were bought directly from a Midwest Depression Era liquidator who had kept the products in his basement for over 40 years.  More than 6,000 of the items are in their original condition and 95% are filled with their original contents.  So, that box of 1930’s Uneeda biscuits probably have the original biscuits inside. Continue reading

Romance and Sex Life of the Date? – Desert Views Road Trip Part 3

Lex sez:

Our next stop on our little desert road trip took us to Indio.  One place that Neek, Sar and I were really curious to visit was Shields Date Garden.  I had never been to this place before even though I love dates; as a child my parents took me to another place that sells dates in Cabazon, Hadley Fruit Orchards (more on that in a later episode).  But I had seen the place before on a Huell Howser TV show on public television, so I was very excited to experience the place!

Approaching the driveway, the Shields Date Garden sign from 1953 with a knight in shining armor pointing toward the main entrance is a standout sight.  Continue reading

The Palm Springs Mid-Century Modern Visitor’s Center – Desert Road Trip Part 1

It seems like we just can’t stay away from the road!  Neek, Sar and I once again piled into the car and took off.  Once again, one of my sisters (the youngest) was getting married and we were invited.  But it wasn’t in Oregon; this was a destination wedding in Palm Springs, California.  We decided to make the most of this occasion and planned a desert road trip!

The first place we wanted to visit, even before checking into our hotel, was the Palm Springs Visitor Center.  It was originally an Enco service station called the Tramway Gas Station, named so because of its location at the foot of Tramway Road, which leads to the base of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.  Continue reading

Road Trip Wrap Up and What’s Next for Lex and Neek

Neek sez:

Our epic road trip ended with a surprise from TravelNevada.com!  We finally received our certificate and pins from completing Highway 50 – The Loneliest Road in America challenge.  It was a great wrap up to a long and glorious road trip.

We’re so grateful and happy that you were able to join us on this fun journey with some unexpected surprises like being caught in a freak snowstorm and getting locked up in jail and getting the tastiest grub in the West. Continue reading