The Huntington Library and Gardens

What’s Up Wednesday

Sam and I wanted to bypass the usual.  Yes, we did a stinkin’ gorgeous wedding this past weekend, but we are going to wait to share some professional images from the photographer rather than hit you with a ton of iPhone pix.

Instead, we wanted to share some more of our trip to LA.  Can you believe that I clicked away and took 171 photos of The Huntington Library and Gardens?  It was way too tempting to try and capture as much of the beauty that we could possibly share with you!  This place holds a special place in my heart.  I celebrated my 18th birthday in the tea rooms, each one of my three children had their first outing here as newborns, and my daughter experienced her first high tea here.  That is not even mentioning their collections of Shakespeare, the Gutenberg Bible, and Illuminated manuscripts (Yep, I was unabashedly an English major).  The Huntington Library and Gardens will forever be a special place for me….so I was incredibly excited to explore it with my best friend and her mommy (lovingly aka Mama Rita).

Introducing the lovely Succulent Garden:

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How could you resist names like “Old Woman of the Andes?”

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Awwww, sweet Mama Rita and her Samantha!

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Walking through the gardens, you can easily feel like an extraterrestrial.

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Exiting the succulents led us to the ponds and the Australian Gardens.

Peaceful is all that I can say.

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My favorite is the Saint Francis of Assisi statue watching over the fish, turtles, and rabbits.

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My little lotus flower.

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Next up on our self-guided tour was the conservatory.  Only added to the property within the last 10 years, it has quickly become my favorite spot in the gardens.

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The controlled elements allow for such a learning experience.  This area is all about beauty and education.  When I lived down in LA and was homeschooling my two oldest, this was my favorite spot to heighten my kiddo’s curiosity.

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I love that Sam is just as big of a plant nerd as myself!  This place was too much fun to explore.

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The bromeliads, tilandsias, and orchids were out of this world!!!

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Their cool exhibits includ hands on demonstrations of how seeds manage to travel.  Sam and I wanted to steal the raccoon fur.  Teehee

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Like any good foodie, we were entranced by the vanilla vine.  Oh my goodness…..I WANT!

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Onward and outward to the rose garden.  Romance was in the air!  Especially since it started to rain on us!!

Roses in the rain…..pure poetry.

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Our last stops were the Japanese and the Chinese Gardens.

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Unfortunately, the wisteria was not in bloom.  When it is, there is such a breathtaking canopy of purple.

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I have always been so tempted to run up this quaint bridge, despite it being roped off.

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Can I tell you how tickled pink I was when I revisited the tea house that Huntington literally shipped from Japan?  During my previous visits, I had not completely fallen in love with Shou-Sugi-Ban.  In fact, I had no idea that Japanese design routinely included singeing the surface of wood.  Now that I have done numerous projects, I could not help but hold my breath at this beauty!

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And then, there is the amazing banzai collection…..

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Lastly, we visited the multi-million dollar Chinese Garden.  Having brought craftsmen straight from China, The Huntington Library and Gardens spared no expense at creating an authentic beauty for all to enjoy!

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Walking on mosaics of this caliber really takes your breath away.

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Ooooo more Shou Sugi Ban.  I was a happy girl!  Bring on the lotus flower.

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I think we need to plan another visit STAT.  However, I am not sure anything would compare to the magic that the light rain created for our day.

Appreciate and absorb the beauty my lovelies…and plan a trip for yourselves.

Be inspired……

xoxo

Chanda

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