December 25, 2014

The Homecoming: A Christmas Story (1971)

Old television
This is the TV movie that started it all. This film, based on creator Earl Hamner's real-life family, aired in 1971. 

It was such a huge success that a series was created. That series, The Waltons, was expected to be a flop but ran for nine years.

December 22, 2014

Celebrating Christmas in Chester

Sally Lunn's Tea Room and Restaurant, Chester, NJ
Sally Lunn's Tea Room and Restaurant

The Chesters are two lovely and historic little towns. Yes, there are two Chesters, just as there are two Mendhams right nearby (this is typical of New Jersey). Despite some commercialization in the last few years, the Mendhams, Chesters and the whole area is delightfully rural, peaceful, and beautiful. 

December 15, 2014

Northlandz, Part II (With Dolls!)

Northlandz 2000 pipe organ
2,000 pipe organ which the Northlandz owner sometimes plays

Last week I told you about Northlandz, the model railroad located in Flemington, New Jersey. I showed you some trains and the spectacular scenery and settings that were created by the owner.

December 08, 2014

Northlandz, Part 1

Northlandz sign

Northlandz is considered the “world’s largest model railroad” by some, although others have claimed that title for a place in Germany

It is certainly one of the largest in the world. Northlandz started with the owner building trains and villages for his own amusement after a hard day’s work. 

December 01, 2014

Searching for History in Belvidere


Belvidere, New Jersey

 We came back for a second visit to pretty Belvidere, New Jersey

We had several goals that day. 


One of them was to see the Robert Morris House on Greenwich Street. Robert Morris was one of the signers of The Declaration of Independence

I also wanted to check out the Country Gate Players Playhouse and the downtown area, filled with historic buildings. 

We parked in front of a nice house on Greenwich Street next to the Country Gate Players Playhouse. 

Country Gate Playhouse

We ate lunch at the Thisilldous Eatery

Everyone was very friendly. The sandwich was good.

Belvidere, New Jersey

We admired the John Nicoll House, built c. 1825. He was a clockmaker.

John Nicoll House, Belvidere, New Jersey

John Nicoll House plaque, Belvidere, New Jersey

If you are wondering why we wanted to see the PNC Bank Building, it is because it was originally the First National Bank Building. 

It is a beautiful building, especially on the inside. It was built in 1929, which isn’t old by Belvidere standards, but it is truly a classic bank building. 


They have really kept the original interior mostly intact. 

Of course I couldn’t take photos inside because it is a bank, but I will tell you that it has beautifully decorative ceilings, lovely light fixtures, huge windows, and even classic old-school teller cages! 

When the teller noticed me wandering around and gazing at everything, and asked me if I wanted help, I just told her that we just wanted to see the inside of the building, and she laughed knowingly. I told you everyone in this town is so friendly. 

PNC Bank Building, Belvidere, New Jersey

PNC Bank Building, Belvidere, New Jersey

PNC Bank Building, Belvidere, New Jersey

Warren House was built in 1828, on the former site of a log cabin. It is now a Masonic temple.

Warren House, Belvidere, New Jersey

Warren House, Belvidere, New Jersey

We walked back to Greenwich Street. I decided that we now needed to search for the Robert Morris House. 

As we walked back to our car, I realized that we had parked right in front of it! Yes, it was right next to the Country Gate Playhouse! 

In addition to signing The Declaration of Independence, Robert Morris apparently named Belvidere, and was a financier to the American Revolution. 


He had this house built for his daughter and gave it to her as a gift for her wedding in 1780.

Robert Morris House, Belvidere, New Jersey

Robert Morris House plaque, Belvidere, New Jersey

Robert Morris House, Belvidere, New Jersey

Robert Morris House, Belvidere, New Jersey

Read all my posts on Belvidere!

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