Posts Tagged ‘Quincy’

Since moving here last summer, J and I have done quite a few touristy things in Boston – many of them items on my Boston list. But until Memorial Day weekend, we hadn’t got around to touring the Adams Houses, Quincy’s own piece of presidential history. The birthplaces of John Adams and his son, John Quincy Adams (which stand 75 feet apart), have been preserved, as has Peacefield, home to four generations of Adamses. So when our friend Beth (who lives in Boston proper) said she was hankering for a Memorial Day adventure, we invited her out to Quincy.

It was a hot, muggy day, but we were grateful for the sun after weeks of clouds and rain – and even more grateful for the fans and air-conditioning in all three houses. 🙂 We toured the two birthplaces (maintained by the National Park Service) with “Ranger Steve”:

After walking through both houses, we hopped back on the trolley (so fun!) and headed over to Peacefield, a mansion by comparison with a gorgeous library containing about 12,000 beautiful old books. (No photos allowed inside, unfortunately.) And the garden – oh, the garden! Beth fell in love with the ruffly purple irises, and I was smitten with the vivid orange poppies:

Sometimes I forget how much history Quincy holds – since I now spend most of my days in Boston, which teems with museums, cemeteries, old churches, quirky buildings, and other markers of history. Boston is where I go to work, but it’s also where I go to explore, to learn, to discover new pieces of history. Quincy is where I go to sleep and cook dinner, to do laundry and drop off dry cleaning, to go to the grocery store. But it’s chock full of history too. (And beauty – Peacefield, below, is so elegant! And I love the name.)

After the tour, we strolled over to Gunther Tootie’s for some yummy salads and sandwiches, then went for a walk along Wollaston Beach (our own personal beach, less than a mile from our house). Since Beth lives in a totally different part of Boston, she saw our little corner of it with fresh eyes – and gave us the gift of seeing it in a new light, too.

Do you ever play tourist in your own town? What is there to see/do?

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the apartment tour continued

We’re gradually getting things settled over here, so I have a few more photos of our new place to share with you. Behold, apartment progress:

This is the dining/book room, viewed from the west wall. I love that we have space for my dining table, which has been with me since college. I love the bay windows in this room, and why yes, that built-in china cabinet on the right IS mostly filled with books.

Here’s the dining room from behind the table:

Those are Oxford paintings above the bookcase. And my old workhorse stereo that’s followed me everywhere. And, um, that lamp needs re-shading, but we’ll get there eventually.

Our bedroom finally looks like a haven instead of being filled with boxes:

This is the bedroom as viewed from the door – bookcase, boxes and all. That shoe rack was hard-won – I had to go to three different places to find it!

Here’s another view of our little patio, which I love more and more:

I am ever more thankful to be in a spacious, cozy, lovely little apartment. Hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into our new home.

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(Above: flowers and foliage in the Boston Public Gardens)

1. It’s Quin-zee, not Quincy. Apparently the original Quincy family (as in John Quincy Adams) pronounced with a “z,” so the town we live in does too.

2. The drivers are crazy on the highways, it’s true. But they’re nicer when you’re in town.

3. Said highways, and lots of other roads, are covered in potholes. Yuck.

4. People really do talk like the New Englanders you hear in movies. (Mahket, chowda, etc…)

5. The public libraries are beautiful, and have great selections of books and movies.

6. The people at Brookline are just as friendly as we’ve heard they were.

7. New England clam chowda is delicious. (I knew this, but have re-learned it since coming here.)

8. During a heat wave with no a/c, ice cream, ice water and box fans are essential to survival.

9. All the churches up here seem to be old and beautiful. (Like Oxford.)

10. There is no good Tex-Mex food. So far, anyway. (I suspected this.)

11. Don’t visit Harvard Yard on move-in weekend for freshmen. (We did.)

12. I miss my Texas family a LOT. But I’m glad to be here.

(The beach near our house, with the Boston skyline in the distance)

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We’ve been here in Quincy for a week and a half now. It feels like much longer – in a good way.

Our little flat/apartment, the second story of a big, roomy three-story house, already feels like home. Right now we’re sprawled on the couches with our laptops, listening to Ray LaMontagne, soaking up the last bits of weekend relaxation and mentally prepping for the week.

I hardly know where to start, to tell you all about our new place and new life. Here are a few photos:

The living room is already where we hang out, listening to music, watching Friends (and eating dinner, since the dining-room table is still covered in boxes/junk). The whole place has white walls, lovely moldings, lots of windows and hardwood floors (well, tile in the kitchen and bathroom). These features give it such a clean, fresh feel.

My bathroom still has Paris in it:

I miss my red countertops from Abilene, but I’m loving my spacious little kitchen here:

And my pantry, which holds our little toy fridge, all our food and other random things like the mop, broom, iron and tools:

Our sweet friend Julie decoupaged a table for us as a going-away gift, and everyone in our small group signed it on the bottom. It has pride of place in the living room:

Possibly my favorite feature is the little patio, where I’ve been eating breakfast, drinking tea and doing some writing:

(As you can tell, the striped teacup, a gift from sweet Abi, is getting a lot of use.)

I’ve also gotten a library card, found a yoga studio and attended two classes, walked along the beach with my husband, explored the North End of Boston a bit, walked the Beacon Hill area, been to two farmer’s markets, located Wal-Mart after a long search, drunk lots of tea, unpacked a LOT of boxes and (finally) started hanging stuff on the walls. We’ve made friends with our landlords, who live downstairs, and our upstairs neighbors; found the good local pizza place; driven down to the marina (it’s a bit too posh for us, but pretty); visited a lovely little church twice; and cooked a few meals in our own kitchen. Slowly, slowly, we’re settling in.

More photos to come of the dining/book room and both bedrooms, which are still very much in progress. But I’m thrilled with our new little place and thought you’d like to see it. More soon, friends.

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we’re heah

Well, we made it. After 2200 miles, a half-day delay in Nashville due to a broken trailer, four nights of sleeping in hotels and at friends’ houses, countless rest-stop bathrooms and a whole lot of gas money, we arrived in Boston last Thursday night, laaaate. Our dear friends Abi and Nate met us with hugs, then housed us in their adorable Waltham (west of Boston) apartment for a night. And then the next day, we began the process of hauling boxes and furniture upstairs, unpacking and settling in.

We still don’t have Internet, so I’m typing this from the Panera Bread down the street. I’m slowly finding my bearings, locating the grocery store, the pharmacy, the hardware store, the yoga studio, and yes, the beach. I filled lots of shelves with books today, and tomorrow I’ll start filling walls with beloved photos. I cooked our first meal in our new kitchen last night, and we ate it on our adorable front patio.

Pictures to come, of course, and more stories about our new life. But for now I’ll just say: we’re here. And so glad to be.

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