Thursday, February 28, 2019

West Virginia Independence Hall in Wheeling

The exhibit found in Independence Hall museum in  Wheeling WV highlights the individuals  who were responsible  for creating the  the state  in the midst of the Civil War.  The men who served governor, legislators, conventions, delegates and in other positions in the new government of West Virginia and restored government of Virginia.
I  think that the annual  history bowl event helps in nurturing and inspiring West Virginia's children in embracing their potential  to make a difference  in the world.  The founder of this event, Mr. Randahll, gave a short speech before the competition begun  and he  said that he's been all over Europe for years but came back to West Virginia because it is is HOME.  He teased the crowd that people who have never been in WV is missing out.
As a retired navy, my husband really enjoyed all of the military stuff display. According to one of the host of the events whom we talked to, the grand architecture of the building's interiors has been authentically restored.  She said it was a mess when they first started restoring the place but it looks beautiful now. 
With statues being torn down these days, I am glad that you can still learn the history through museums like this.
  "West Virginia: Born of the Civil War." :  You can find and  see the permanent exhibition, located on the first floor of the museum.  It  features dramatic displays with period artifacts.  If you are into history, you can  explore the statehood process against the background of the Civil War.  It's a pretty neat experience.
I like the setting because aside from the information laid out in each display, there's is also an audio you can listen to by lifting the  telephone like tool. You can also  view an interpretive video, "For Liberty and Union," and take a self-guided tour of the structure.
This used to be  the Governor's office.  I really find the arch window shaped so charming.
I don't see this kind of chandelier anymore so it was a treat to see it there at the museum.
I am glad that there are museums that young mind can go to and explore.  They can learn a lot of things like preservation of the flag which is not being taught in school anymore these days.  The school where my children go to still recites  the Pledge of Allegiance everyday so I am grateful about that.
I like this part of the museum right here.  You can build your own flag.
This is where President Lincoln sat when he visited.  It said that:
"Nearly six years before President Lincoln signed the proclamation making West Virginia the 35th State in the Union, the construction had begun on the Wheeling Custom House, the headquarters for federal offices for the Western District of Virginia. Its completion, coinciding with the beginning of the Civil War, provided a facility for heated political discussions and constitutional conventions that led to eventual statehood for West Virginia in 1863. Here, issues dividing many Virginians - slavery being one of many - were debated, compromised and shaped into the skeleton of statehood. Serving as the Restored Government of Virginia (aligned with the Union) from 1861-1863, it is appropriately known today as West Virginia Independence Hall."

There's so much info to absorb but unfortunately I did not have enough time to read all of them.  All I could do was to snap  some quick shots of the interesting things
Aside from salt, West Virginia is also known for glass manufacturing back in the  day.
There's also a factory  in Newell, WV for fiestaware.
These tools represents the iron reproduction in West Virginia back in the day.  Mining is also one of the biggest thing in WV back in the day.  
We plan to go back there one day just so we could  fully absorb  and see  all the infos in the display.
Steamboats and trains are two biggest part of transportation of coal and other products back in the day in West Virginia.  There's still trains and steamboat these days and it is so neat to see  the old ones that was used in the civil war era.
This tool was invented by a Virginian, Cyrus McCormick from Shenandoah Valley in 1831.  This is called the Virginia Reaper machine which revolutionized harvesting wheat.  This machine had a very positive  effect for the Union of the Civil War.
You can read the facts about this machine below.
Wheeling is the civil war capitol of Virginia, a birthplace of West Virginia. This is where West Virginia was born.
Try to explore this Independence Hall Museum when you are in Wheeling.  

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Going on a Trip? Here’s What to do With Your Home

When you go on long vacations, you need to protect your home. It might be the biggest investment in your life. It’s your refuge from the toils of the world, the one spot that’s devoted to you and your family. Leaving it unoccupied for weeks or months could lead to undesirable results.

So what can you do? Let’s review your options.

Do Nothing

This might be reasonable if your trip will be very short. But you don’t want your home to be deserted for an extended period of time. This could encourage people to break in. Homeowners have horror stories of returning to their property after an absence only to find strangers living on the premises.

It’s an unlikely scenario but it could happen.

If you’re going to be away for less than a week, here’s what you can do to get rid of vacant look. Turn on your alarm system, leave a few lights on or use your home’s smart system to turn them on and off occasionally. If you’re close with your neighbors, you can ask one of them to get your mail.

Get a Housesitter

A housesitter is someone whose role is to watch over your home. You should consider this if you’re going to go away for weeks. From an outside point of view, it’ll be like you never left. Criminals won’t target your property because they won’t believe that you’re gone.

One way to find a housesitter is to ask your friends and family. Some people would relish the opportunity to have a house for themselves.

If you do decide to go with someone you know, make sure that you set the ground rules in advance. You don’t want to come home to any surprises. For example, can your housesitter have guests over? Are there plants or pets that you expect them to look after?

You can also hire a professional housesitter. They often don’t charge anything for their services. Their payment is being able to live rent-free for a few months. If you live in a desirable location, it’ll be very easy to find someone willing to housesit.

You can find a professional housesitter online. There are websites dedicated to the practice.

Update Your Alarm System

An advanced alarm system might be enough to keep your home safe. You can change the settings when you go on vacation. While you’re away, you can look at any room in the house on your smartphone or computer if you buy the right package.

Only 17 percent of American homes have an active alarm system. If you have one in place, advertise it. Put stickers in the window and a sign in the yard. Add a beware of dog sign even if it’s an empty threat.

Someone who is looking for an easy break-in is likely to pass by a home that’s clearly protected. It’s not worth the hassle when there are so many homes that don’t have an alarm system.

Arrange Your Mail

A pile of letters, or worse, packages, at your door announces to the world that you’re out of town. There are a few ways to handle this. You can ask the post office to temporarily hold your mail while you’re gone.

You can also ask someone else to pick up your mail while you’re gone. Because it’s such a simple task, your friends might be willing to do it for free.

House Swap

A twist on getting a housesitter is to do a house swap instead. Let’s say you live in New York City and you want to go to Madrid for a month. You can search for someone with a home in Madrid who wants to live in your city. This way, you both save money on hotel fees.

Peter Goldberg, CEO of, made a career out of catering to people’s desire to be in nice surroundings. is a leading Canadien website geared toward home retail products. If you can’t afford nice home furnishings yourself, a house swap can give you the experience.

According to Goldberg: “The right home decor can transform a dull, impersonal space into a comfortable, inviting area that your guests and visitors will love.”

A house swap can be very hard to set up on your own. The internet can help.

A vacation can turn your entire year around. Yet they can be hard to plan if you’re a homeowner. You have a duty to protect your home. It requires planning on your part. An empty house is an alluring target for all sorts of thieves. Living in a nice neighborhood isn’t enough.

Modern technology makes everything easier. You can link your home to a video feed so you can always see what’s going on. 

Sugarcreek Roadtrips

It's been a while since we last visited Sugarcreek.  We used to go there almost every weekend just so we can drive around and see other ...

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