August 21, 2010

Glen Ellen, "Valley of the Moon"

Friday, we headed up to Sonoma county to go here. Jack London state park is one of my favorite places in Sonoma county to visit. Love the surrounding nature and the home where Jack and his wife Charmaine lived out their colorful lives. The first stop when you visit is this stone house called "Happy Walls museum." Charmaine had this built in memory of her husband after he died, and I believe she lived there also.
Built in the craftsman era, which is one of my favorites, it really is a very warm and inviting space. There are many personal items on display here.

Beautiful gold watch that Charmaine gave Jack.
I always picture Jack London with a pipe, as he is writing one of his novels, and this one is pretty great I think!
This book shelf contained his books that were translated into other languages.

I would love to have a bay window like this so sit and read all day long.....

Dinning room
Charmaine's dressing area. We were in love with the green color of the dresser and the sink.
This is the outside of the museum. Not far from here, you can take a little half mile hike to view the ruins of the "Wolfe" house. It was a mansion that the London's had built, and was destroyed by a fire the night before they were to move in. It breaks my heart every time I see the little model of the would be house, and how stunning it could have been. It looked very similar to the stone house above, but it had 26 rooms and 13,000 square feet. It was also to have a long reflecting pool in the center of it. They eventually moved into a cottage on the property, and the pictures are below.
The group ready for the hike to the cottage.
I can't begin to tell you how gorgeous the light in Sonoma is in the summer time. Maybe you can get the idea if you click on the photos to make them larger. My heart skips a beat every time we walk up to that cottage. I would move into it in a heart beat!
Caitlin is excited to go see it.......
I would move there just to have that beautiful oak tree as my view!!
Another amazing view, of the vineyard on the other side of the cottage.

The London's were avid travelers, and here are their suitcases.
One of the bedrooms

One of Jacks writing areas.
This looks to be the main area though! The light in here is prettier that what I can capture.
This is where Jack took naps
If you click on this picture, that little yellow card by the window, shows what time he wanted to be woken up from his naps.
Charmaine's bedroom
I love this room!!

This was her writing area.

They had many guests, and this was one of the rooms they used for them. There was another area where the dinning area and kitchen were, but it wasn't open yet for the public. You could peek in the window, and see it though.

After visiting the park, we later drove into Sonoma for dinner at our favorite restaurant called "The Girl & the Fig." We had lots of fun there with way too much too eat! Since we had rented a van, so that everyone could fit, we had it for today as well. I may do a post on where we went today if you want to see......


  1. I want two things Elizabeth. #1- I want to see were you went next. And #2- I want a room with a spot for sleeping that has a little yellow card announcing when I need to be woken (hopefully they will have a cup of tea in hand). The light reminded me of my home country, Chile. Thanks for the day trip, Carolina

  2. Looks like a fun trip. I love tho go to historical places and imagine what it would be like to
    live in that time.
    No pics of dinner?? Love the name of the restaurant.
    Looking forward to seeing where you went next!


  3. So funny...I thought "how did they all fit in the car?"...and then you told me!

  4. the place looks incredible! i love everything that was charmaine's - so beautiful. love your photos and thank you for taking time to share such a wonderful place with us.

  5. Oh wow. I really want to go visit after seeing this post. What gorgeous rooms. I want to move right in. Caitlin's green skirt looks fantastic on.

  6. Thank you for sharing this wonderful outing, I am fascinating by the London house and museum. I did not even know it existed, thank you!

    (I came here from Corey.)