A way to survive the empty nest and a "cracked "relationship with a fun daily challenge of new experiences, reflections, sources, and some biblical guidance. I hope this blog which offers a fun journey to survive by trying something new, either vicariously or by doing, will result in a survival tool kit to replace the past familiar doing, giving, and/or incorporating the interest of your child or your long gone love interest, with some new self interest(s).
Day 313 Phipps Conservatory “Let it Glow”- Relax and Share the Wonder of the Season
surrounding the Holiday Season often involve that panic rush feeling
"to get it all done.” We forget
as my blog inspiration book, “Everything
I Learned About Christmas, I
Learned From A Little Golden
Book”, reminds us that
Christmas should be a “time of wonder, a time like no other time of the
year.” At Phipps
beauty brings back the wonder of the season as you navigate through the 8 rooms
of nature infused with lights, Christmas trees and poinsettias, as
well as 6 permanent botanical gardens.
It is so magical that I have decided to make experiencing the winter wonderland at
the Phipps an empty nest tradition. It is even better to share this magic with friends and family making memories and even getting that perfect Holiday card picture.
Penguins in East Room
ascetics found in natural beauty have a way of relaxing the soul. The plants,
flowers and lights always put me in the holiday spirit. That being said,
the experience is so much more enjoyable when you are not following a line of
people through the 14 rooms and the Outdoor Garden.
Outdoor Garden at night, a must see
Try going after 9 pm or week day to avoid crowds
This is the second year that the Conservatory is trying a
new timed ticketing reservation system. We went on a sold-out Saturday night. At first we
were part of a continual line of
spectators but itseemed to clear out
after 9:30 pm.To have a more peaceful experience, visit on a
week day or latter in the evening on the weekends since they are open nightly
until 11 pm (we empty- nesters
don’t have kids to worry about).
"Let it Glow" seemed extra
spectacular this year, maybe because it offset some of
the unfortunate recent current events and the lack of Pittsburgh sunshine. In
fact, my friend who needed a little push to attend, soon perked up with
excitement to discover what would be found in each room. His favorite was the Cuba Exhibit in the Tropical Forest that intermixed plants nativeto Cuba and was adorned with 250 feet of lights.
We discovered 20
decorated Christmas trees and 2,300 poinsettias scattered
throughout the Conservatory, Storybook characters in the Serpentine room,
flowered penguins in the East Room and a Fraser Fir that glistened like a
star towering up 22 feet over a
reflecting pool in the Victoria room. We went at night and enjoyed the 25,000
LED lights inside the Conservatory and the glistening 62,000 square- foot
illuminated Outdoor Garden (see map here ).
Story Book, Serpentine Room
As I looked around
everyone seemed to be smiling and in “awe” of something. Maybe it was the 23
different varieties of Poinsettias or maybe it was the huge train layout
depicting the history of Phipps' past that produced the smiles. Whatever it was, “Let it Glow”sure gave us the
needed feeling of wonder just like a child discovering something
beautiful and new. It will keep the
wonder in your Christmas Season no matter how you enjoy it.
And amazement seized them all, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying "We have seen extraordinary things today" (Luke 5:26)