Florence Griswold Museum

There is a little gem of a museum in historic Old Lyme, Connecticut. It’s called the Florence Griswold Museum and it’s home to artwork new and old, gorgeous gardens, and a lovely river view.img_9207

img_9203The Museum centers on the home of Miss Florence Griswold, who opened her big colonial home up as a boarding house to members of the Lyme Art Colony in the early 1900s. As you stroll through the lovely old house there is art work everywhere. Not only traditionally hung paintings, but also fun and unexpected little paintings on the walls and door panels. The artists would have competitions with each other to each paint in a certain style, say impressionism. They would have to paint the same subject on either side of the door panel. The result are whimsical paintings done in a free style on most of the houses’ doors.img_9139img_9149img_9176

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img_9147Across the flower gardens, the more modern Krieble gallery houses newer works of art. The day we went happened to be their Art in Bloom day- that was such an awesome surprise! The flower arrangements to match the works of art were some of the best I’ve seen. They really captured their assigned paintings.img_9121

After being thoroughly inspired from the various art and flora which fills the premises, definitely take a stroll down to the Lieutenant River. They have Adirondack chairs set up just waiting to be sat in.

img_9197img_9195There is also a beautiful little art studio in a cedar shake cottage right by the parking lot. Be sure to poke your head in there.

img_9219I felt thoroughly inspired and refreshed after my visit to the Florence Griswold Museum. How serendipitous to be there for art in bloom as well! You can find the museum off of Highway 95 in Old Lyme Connecticut. Enjoy your visit!

 

 

The Grand Connecticut Adventure Day

We set off for The Grand Connecticut Adventure Day at five in the morning because we live so far from Connecticut. I never mind waking up early for adventure, it’s almost easier, and I’m so excited that I can’t sleep anyways. Connecticut has been in the works for quite some time. I’ve been eyeing up various destinations on my Pinterest board. When a day off from work arose, I mapped out a route which was somewhat coherent. Good thing I have a very game mother-in-law who’s willing to drive three hours there, and then one hour between destinations, and then sit in traffic for five hours on the way home. It was a great day. As usual, I’ll let the photos tell most of the story~

Thanks to good conversation and surprisingly traffic-free highways, the drive down went quickly. We intended to start off at the Florence Griswold Museum, but as we arrived an hour before they opened for the day, we had to kill some time (not difficult when you’re exploring). We asked a local for a recommendation and said to check out the town of Essex- what a great suggestion! Set right on the water, it’s a quaint New England town whose Main Street is lined with old houses and dead ends at the ocean. An hour passed quickly and we made our way back to the Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme. I did a separate post about that lovely place which you can find here.

img_9207img_9149After a good couple hours’ wander around the art museum and grounds, we hit the road again for Terrain, a garden shop extravaganza which was quite the place. I hesitate to rave about it too much, as I felt it was very pricey and also I am not sure of their business ethics (I just haven’t looked into where and how their products are made). Located in Westport, on a busy street of shops and commercial sprawl, it was a surprisingly beautiful and expansive shop.img_9229img_9233

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img_9260After a quick and yummy vegan lunch (and the best iced coffee I’ve ever had- seriously) at Green & Tonic, we headed over to our last stop, just an hour before their closing time of 4 PM, to Weir Farm National Historic Site in Wilton, CT. Operated by the National Parks Service, this gorgeous farm property is the only one of two National Historic Sites dedicated to the arts (the other one being Saint Gauden’s National Historic site in Cornish, New Hampshire). It was free to enter, and you could stroll anywhere on the large property. The old gardens, stone walls, and surrounding woods were so beautiful. We arrived too late to tour the house, but we did get to poke into the two art studios – inspiring!img_9265img_9288img_9277

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img_9303At that point, it was time to head for home. In hindsight, it may have been wise to get dinner in Westport or another nearby town and head for I-84 once most traffic had passed (or maybe make a weekend trip out of it and stay somewhere overnight- there certainly is a lot to do in the area- we just scratched the surface!) Alas, that wasn’t to be, for tiredness took over. So we headed onto I-84 and dealt with the traffic. Good conversation and snacks kept us going, and before we knew it we were home. Another successful adventure day for the books. It truly was a perfect day off- one of those days you just can’t get out of your mind. I keep thinking and thinking about it 🙂 img_9308img_9337