Episode 15: This Marine Corps Life-Happy Birthday Marines and Happy Veterans Day

In this week’s episode of The Wild Bradbury Podcast I discuss:

  • My first European exposure.
  • I tell the story of how I came to find myself in Greece at 19 with a long term significant other.
  • How that unfolded. . .
  • and how those plans I set for my younger self morphed into a world schooling mom and military spouse!

This is the beginning of my travel journey, the end of a relationship and the finding of someone new and I life I could never have imagined. Thank you for sharing this with me.

Episode 13: Getting Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable

In this Episode of The Wild Bradbury Podcast I discuss:

  • The Misconception of Comfort in American Society and travel
  • Expectations of traveling on a budget
  • Experiences vs. Expenses
  • Adapting to Cultural Norms

As always, thank you so much for listening. We are neck deep in Halloween festivities over here and wishing you the best fall season possible!

Episode 12: Where to Begin Homeschooling

In this Episode of The Wild Bradbury Podcast we discuss:

  • What kind of homeschooler do you want to be?
  • Is your curriculum going to be Secular or non-secular?
  • What does your ideal methodology look like?
  • What is most important to you structure wise?
  • What kind of students do you think you have?

If you would like to see some of our curriculum; follow us on instagram where I post our weekly school book and activities and you can follow us on youtube where I have done curriculum unveilings as well as other videos!

As always thank you for joining us!

Ghost Stories of New Bern, NC

New Bern, North Carolina and the surrounding areas are some of the oldest examples of British Colonialism in the Southern States. As one of the original 13 colonies it was incredibly important for the English Crown to show its strength with a governmental seat in North Carolina. Tryon Palace in New Bern became the representation of the English Crown in America. Later the Crown’s position would be moved to New York. With New Bern, NC being the first capital of North Carolina there is an intensely deep history in the region. With history comes Ghosts. . .

Getting to know the Ghosts

New Bern, NC is now considered the most haunted town in North Carolina and usually ranks rather high nation wide as well. There are a couple of companies making a living by giving Ghost tours in downtown New Bern. If you were to venture out on your own some spooky night these haunted homes should be on your list:

One of the most famous Ghosts of New Bern is Miss Fannie Taylor. Fannie Taylor’s family home is one of the oldest in town. Built in 1792 by her farther Isaac, it is home to the oldest alley garden in New Bern and today is a garden and event area.

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A week before Fannie’s wedding her fiancé left this home for an evening stroll and collapsed on the street, dead. That day Fannie swore that she would never leave the home again. She locked herself inside the home and proceeded to live there until her death. Fannie kept her promise and now locals claim to see Fannie’s ghost in the front window of her home. She is such a common sight in Downtown New Bern, that superstitions have developed in regards to how to behave around Fannie. Apparently, if you do not tell Fannie “Goodnight” bad luck will find you.

A Family Affair

Your second stop on the tour is to the home of The Stanly Family. The Stanly House is one of the grandest homes in New Bern and considered to be the greatest example of Georgian architecture in the South today. Made for the incredibly prominent business man John Wright Stanly in the 1780s. This lovely house would become home to his wife and their NINE children. When the youngest child was just three months old, Mr. Stanly and his wife would both die of Yellow Fever on the same day. New Bern suffered greatly from a Yellow Fever Epidemic in 1789. The children would abandon the home for the following decade until the eldest son came of age.

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You may think that the obvious ghosts of the Stanly House would be John Stanly and his wife who succumbed to Yellow Fever, BUT that would be incorrect. The real ghost of the Stanly House is John Stanly’s son he had with an enslaved African women of the Ebo tribe. John Carruthers Stanly was generally acknowledged to be the son of John Wright Stanly and was born into slavery. He would later buy his way out of slavery and become a very successful business man in Craven County. He would haunt his father’s happy family hope that he could never be a part of. . .

Not Just Homes Are Haunted

The Athens Theatre is home to a mischievious ghost named Dorothy. Dorothy was once an actress at the theatre. She is said to have been spotted in the balcony, upset about the lack of the career she hoped for, she shuts the lights off on other actresses. Cheeky ghost.

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The Cemeteries of New Bern are notoriously haunted. During the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1799, the number of deaths was so abundant that the victims were buried in trench style ditches in the only public cemetery at the time, Christ Church. Believed to have thousands of graves in it’s small cemetery. Christ Church has seen many a ghost. From flashes of light to floating orbs. The cemetery is something straight out of a horror film.

The Scariest of Them All

Just outside of New Bern is Foscue Plantation house. Technically, located in Pollocksville, but more a part of New Bern than not. Foscue Plantation has stories that will give you nightmares. One of the largest slave owners in Craven county, Foscue would keep his slaves chained up in the attic. Some 90 slaves in a 30 year period were kept in his attic. It is said that visitors can hear cries and moaning every evening and the servant staircase is constantly stained in bright red blood. The blood has been painted over numerous times and it continues to come right through the paint. . .

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If you are feeling brave and don’t mind a few spooks, New Bern, North Carolina could be a ghastly adventure for you. From walking ghost tours, actors appearing in colonial costume and having to tell Miss Fannie “Good Night” it is sure to be something you’ll talk about for years to come.

Holding Space

I have written this post twice now, then deleted it. I wrote it by hand once, then trashed it. Because, the truth is, there really aren’t words for the grief in this space. I didn’t record a podcast this week. Not because I have a cold from hell, which I do, but because this week marks the first REALLY BIG date in my stillbirth with our baby Oak. This Saturday would have been my due date and instead it’s a work day of putting together a trampoline and sewing patches on cub scout uniforms.

Everything about the podcast is meant to be truly authentic, not forced, not a job, just me sharing my heart with anyone willing to listen, but I’m not ready to share every dark corner of the day I delivered Oak. I will. It will come, but right now I can’t fake being cheerful this week. I can’t seem to think about anything else, it is completely consuming all of my thoughts and instead of fighting it and eventually resenting the podcast; I am

Holding Space for myself and my grief.

There was no urgency about the process of moving into our house by anyone but me. Now that I am sitting in my favorite chair, more unpacked than not, I now recognize that I was treating this unpack as if I was still 38 weeks pregnant. See, when you have a home birth, you are supposed to have your home ready to birth in by 36 weeks. I felt this overwhelming sense of needing to get into the house and get unpacked. Today, it became clear, that I knew I would need to hold this space this week, on Saturday. I knew that if all I could do on Saturday was cry, the house would be put together enough for the family to function in.

In a great effort of self-preservation I’m going to say something I HAVE NEVER IN MY LIFE said. The next few days I am off limits for your needs. I have always found great self worth in helping others, but I can’t. I am saving my mental and emotional energy for me. I’m not over committing myself, I’m not saying yes to anything that doesn’t feel exponentially better than whatever state I’m in and I am Holding My Space because I can’t hold my baby.

This weekend if you find yourself with a solitude moment or two join me silently in that space. I will feel you. I know I am deeply cared about and you are welcome to hold me and love me in that space, but please don’t reach out. Because you will ask how I am and I just am not. My fall equinox was supposed to bring me a baby. This month was supposed to complete our family. Everything about this September is different than it was intended to be and unfortunately I am now Holding this Space for my own grief.

Someday, in a book I imagine, the details of April 2019 will come to surface, but for now it’s very important to me that people understand that our baby wasn’t born of tissue and bones alone.

He looked just like his big brother Lux. So much so that you could almost see glimpses of his future freckle covered face. A cleft chin that each of our boys has had and a huge grin on his face. As I finish this, my wind chime is going crazy and I know I am completely surrounded by his spirit all the time.

Though, everyone tells me that the grieving changes and becomes more bearable, I don’t believe that there will ever be a day when I don’t look at our boys and see the space he should be holding amongst the group. So please, hold my mama heart in yours this weekend. Occasionally, I need to pull from other’s strength as well.

Episode 11- Interview with Shanen Aranmor of Weld Like A Girl

In Episode 11 of The Wild Bradbury Podcast I introduce our first interview for the Doing Good As You Go portion of the Podcast. This interview is with Shanen Aranmor of Weld Like A Girl in Yuma, AZ.

Shanen is on a mission to change the world one girl in a trade at a time. I spent all day with her, breathing her in and loving every moment. There are businesses doing good everywhere, people doing their very best to be the change.

Female Empowerment is so very necessary and there is no better place to start than with Weld Like A Girl! Look for our welding videos on youtube later this week on The Wild Bradbury Youtube Channel!

Thank you so much for listening! Share and share, sing Shanen’s praises she has earned it and is DOING SO MUCH GOOD AS SHE GOES!

The World’s Largest Pumpkin Festival

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In the beautiful village of Ludwigsburg, Germany you can find the World’s Largest Pumpkin Festival. The quiet, unsuspecting town gives a wonderful backdrop for rows upon rows of streets lined with pumpkins. Numerous artist installations, food vendors that only serve pumpkin flavored items and fall festivities litter the acreage that surrounds the Ludwigsburg Schloss (castle). A fabulous dose of fall creativity and flavor can be found here and enjoyed by the whole family.

Getting There

North of Stuttgart, Germany, approximately 45 minutes, is the town of Ludwigsburg. Easily accessible by car and bus, the town offers a variety of amenities. Like many medieval towns the castle is the heart of the village. During its prime Ludwigsburg Schloss would have held the village within its walls. As these villages grow they expand beyond the walls and the modern city is born. In modern times these spaces are now used for cultural enrichment, historical conversations and festivals. The pumpkin festival does not disappoint and brings a lot of life to the beautifully preserved castle.

Once you locate the castle and find a place to park along the street, you will be undergoing a great deal of walking. No rough terrain, nice flat paths, but if you are doing the festival with kids a stroller would be handy.

The Creativity Overload

The Wild Bradbury: Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival

You could visit the Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival every day for a month and experience something else entirely each and every day. The artist thought that goes into making this festival and annual success is tremendous. Just some of the events taking place at the Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival are:

  • Pumpkin Carving Contests
  • Ugliest Pumpkin Contests
  • Largest Pumpkin Contests
  • Sand Sculpting Contests (they also have sand pits for the kids to give it a try).
  • Gourd Kayaking Contests (yes, yes).
  • Pumpkin Catapulting/Trebuchet Contests
  • Food Eating Contests
  • Art installations everywhere built with pumpkins
The Wild Bradbury: Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival

AND I haven’t even mentioned the most interesting part, in my opinion. The FOOD! There are numerous food vendors on the grounds and they only serve pumpkin or apple flavored items! It’s rather incredible. The food options are wonderful and extensive, but if you do not like pumpkin you will struggle to eat here. Culturally, the food was the most distinct thing for me and our children. We all ordered something different so we could try many different options. From strudels and puddings to pumpkin flavored Wiener schnitzel and soups its all good!

If you’re going to go to the Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival, I highly recommend eating at least two full meals there as there is so much to choose from.

The Wild Bradbury: Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival

I know, it’s beautiful right? The pumpkin risotto made my heart sing. Most of the drinks are pumpkin flavored as well. From pumpkin bears to moscatos, sodas and juices, you really need to go in a sick free group so everyone can try the other’s food and drinks!

Family Friendly Festival

The Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival is an extremely kid friendly event as well. Throughout the duration of the festival there are different speakers offering growing tips for pumpkins, discussing the different varieties and making crafts out of Gourds. The kids can participate in numerous pumpkin based activities and races, as well as, pumpkin painting and rolling. The art installations are meant to be enjoyed by everyone and although, children are not destroying anything, it is common to see kids climbing amongst the piles of pumpkins for photo-ops. There is also pumpkin picking in an open field, hayrides, and pumpkin gift shops everywhere. You will, for sure, go home with a pumpkin or souvenir. Our children’s favorite thing was the art installation scavenger hunt. In an effort to draw more attention to the great details and depths the artists put into their work, the festival has created a scavenger hunt. The kids get to enjoy the festival while finding the animals and scenes created by the artists.

The Wild Bradbury: Ludwigsburg Pumpkin Festival

HOORAY For Fall!

With the fall season comes this beautiful tribute to pumpkins (pumpkin spice lattes ha)! No one does this tribute better than Ludwigsburg, Germany. Now home to the World’s Largest Pumpkin Festival and happening for over a month. It is as incredible as it is unique. If you find yourself visiting Munich for Octoberfest, do yourself a huge favor by taking the train or car over to Ludwigsburg for a day or two. I would love to make it a yearly pilgrimage for us. Here’s to hoping and pumpkins!

Episode 10-The Mission

In this episode of The Wild Bradbury Podcast we discuss:

  • I discuss numerous things happening over here in Bradbury Land.
  • Our PCS move gone array.
  • Death of our beloved pet while living in a hotel.
  • Dealing with emotional trauma on the road.
  • The goals for the podcast.
  • Introducing the “Doing Good As You Go” portion of the podcast where I highlight/interview individuals and businesses doing beautiful things for people and the planet.
  • I also briefly discuss my passion for conservation, raising conservationists and shifting your home to reflect that shift.
  • I also address those people/listeners/friends/fans who reach out throughout the week with their questions. Keep them coming and get out there!

Thank you so much for listening, your support means the world to me. Please send me any information you have about a company that you really love. I will be highlighting people and businesses periodically (hoping for monthly if I can find enough to make it regular).

Next week on The Wild Bradbury Podcast we will have my interview with Shanen Aranmour at Weld Like a Girl. Inspire someone this week to be the best version of themselves.

Episode 9: How Do You Decide Where To Go? (and other things)

In Episode 9 we discuss:

  • How you choose your first few destinations
  • How you get to the big bucket list destinations
  • How technologically ignorant I am 🙂
  • Using Sanity Safety Nets to get yourself seasoned in travel

As always, thank you, thank you for listening. If you have made it thus far you know I have been having issues learning how to record properly. I think I fixed it!

Thanks again!

-Lydia Bradbury