A little palate cleanser before we launch ahead!

Christmas was delightful, if not altogether one very bright blur. I don’t think I will ever quite adjust to how much effort promotes the occasion and then in what seems to be an extremely short blink of time– WHOOSH! It’s over.

If I can’t exactly harness time, I can enjoy along the way.

One very nice aspect of working in a university is that an academic calendar paired with good fortune offers the week between Christmas and New Year’s as a wonderful work holiday–one very important element towards breathing lighter.

We’re enjoying some mini-field trips–holiday palate cleansers of sorts; local outings shared with the hundreds of thousands of people who have descended on Pasadena for the 125th Annual Rose Parade and 100th Rose Bowl Game (January 1st). This place is hopping!

But before I move on, let me share just a few photos and a very brief description of a wonderful place we visited a week ago. I don’t think I’ll be as eager to share Christmas lights once we leave December.

The Mission Inn, a historic landmark in Riverside, California, is absolutely steeped in wonderful history. Presidents have both married and honeymooned at the hotel, and many notables, among them Susan B. Anthony, Helen Keller and Albert Einstein, have all enjoyed this historic property.

This year was the 21st Annual Festival of Lights at the Mission Inn. From Thanksgiving to New Years hundreds of thousands of visitors throng to see the millions of lights that festoon the Inn and the surrounding neighborhood and businesses.

People refer to it as “Disneyland without the admission price.”

I’ll leave you with these photos to enjoy as prelude to my next post where I will include all the “good Presidential stuff” as well as some detail of the Clark Gable era celebrities that graced the grounds. He spent time there, too. And Bette Davis was married there…see? I can barely stop myself from sharing it all now!

So for now, sit back and enjoy the Festival of Lights.

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And oh yes, maybe you’d like to come back by later and I can tell you more about one of the bells from the original hotel owner’s very impressive bell collection.  I’m still trying to learn more about a bell stated to be the oldest bell in Christendom, A.D. 1247. That’s what they say!

And as soon as I can better understand the precise meaning of Christendom in this instance, I’ll be sharing all about that! I need more context!

There is just so much to learn and do and places to visit in 2014! I have a new calendar with all sorts of blank space. I wonder what I’ll be doing this year?

And what would you like to see written in your appointment book?

You’d better start calendaring your adventures and field trips now. You know how slippery time is!