Monday, December 15, 2014

A Christmas Tradition

Many many folks venture into Manhattan from the other boroughs of New York City this time of year.  They enjoy doing the tourist thing.  Seeing the tree at Rockefeller Center, the skating rink, the fabulous store windows.  Not me.  You have seen the tree once, no need to see it again.  Always looks the same.  Yes, a jaded New Yawker here.  

For me, a visit up to the Bronx evokes memories right down into my soul.  The sights, sounds, and yes, smells, of an Italian Christmas.  Unfortunately, many of the places we shopped at in Brooklyn, where I grew up, no longer exist. So a ride over the George Washington Bridge was in order.  

It was a really dreary day, cold, threatening to pour rain (or even snow!) at any moment.

A slice of pizza to fortify us.  

The longest lines imaginable in a tiny narrow slip of a store.  But the most delicious ricotta and mozzarella you ever tasted.

Still put the lights across the street.  So many businesses have stopped doing this.

In Calabria Pork Store

My favorite, torrone, Italian nougat. A must in my house when I was growing up.

I came home with a few small purchases, and reminisces to last the next year.  

Buon Natale a tutti!  Merry Christmas to all!  

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Maine Event: Thanksgiving

My cousins have a lovely vacation home in Maine.  I visited there in the summer and instantly fell in love with the state.  When they invited me to spend Thanksgiving weekend with them up there, I happily said yes.

A nor'easter was predicted for Wednesday, and we left in the wee hours.  The storm was right behind us but the temperature held and we made it in six hours with just one very quick stop.  When we got to their house, about thirty minutes later, this was our view:

Then about 9 PM Wednesday night, we lost power!  Thankfully we had a generator, roads were plowed quickly, we had heat and light.  The fridge was running, but no stove.  How were we going to cook the turkey and make dinner?

Fortunately, my cousin's in-laws have dear friends that live in Rockland, about 30 minutes away.  Their daughter is a James Beard award winning chef who owns one of Maine's best restaurants, called Primo.  It is very hard to get a reservation.  Primo was closed for Thanksgiving as the chef and her mother were decorating it for Christmas.  She graciously offered for us to bring our turkey and trimmings and cook there!  So we did!

I was asked to make stuffed artichokes.  And the cranberry sauce.

My cousin Dawn making potato croquettes

Twenty pounds of juicy deliciousness right here!

Our feast!

A lovely table was set for us in a private room upstairs.  This was after dinner, sorry!

Friday was sunny, we were all plowed out from early Thursday, very impressive plowing, too.  We got our power back in the afternoon.  Hooray!

A good day for sledding

Dawn put up their tree

And we returned home on Sunday with wonderful memories.  A near disaster averted, and turned into a blessing.  I am thankful for my cousins, and their good friends!

The road to their home, a beautiful snow arch!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

A Farewell to Fall

I posted about Deep Cut Gardens back in early June.  It is located in Holmdel, New Jersey.  At that time, I knew I would have to make a visit in the fall, to enjoy the colors of my favorite season.  So with no further ado, and limited 'chatter', here are my photos from a wonderful Saturday I spent a few weeks ago.

I would have loved to spread a warm plaid blanket down on the ground and enjoyed a picnic!  I plan on visiting again during the winter, after a nice snowfall.

Thanks for stopping by.  It is nice getting back into the swing of blogging.  

Monday, November 24, 2014

A Surprise Tea

My 60th birthday was in August, but a dear friend with a hectic schedule surprised me a couple of weeks ago with tea at Palm Court in the Plaza Hotel in NYC!  First time visit to a very iconic NYC oasis.

It was great seeing the Freedom Tower coming out of the tunnel, especially since it was Veterans' Day.

The menu!

Delicious selection of sandwiches, including mini bagels with smoked salmon and cream cheese.  We could not finish all of it so they boxed it up for us.

I felt so special.  Thanks, Dawn!  You are a dear friend, in good times and bad.  

Beautiful red floral display in the lobby.

Another reminder of how lucky we are to live in the land of the free, because of the brave.

Hoping to be back posting on a regular basis!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

A Not So Secret Garden

While enjoying a facial one day during the winter months, the aesthetician asked me if I had ever walked through Deep Cut Gardens in Holmdel, NJ.  I had not, but put it on my list of places to visit in the spring.  I finally made it there this past weekend.

Sorry for sideways photo.  This book was left on a bench I was sitting at and having lunch.  I was tempted to take it but didn't.

I said a little prayer for Mary.  There were many benches placed throughout and many of them had placques on them.  The park was donated by the Genovese family (they had a chain of drug stores) to the people of Monmouth County in NJ.

I must say the place was so beautiful and peaceful, people were walkng around and everyone would smile, nod and say hello.  Very, very zen!

I loved this tree and the way the sunlight filtered through it.  I took so many photos I could never get them all in one post.  I was actually lugging around my iPad, as it is the only way I can upload photos using the Blogger app.  App is really useless.  

Took a rest here.

Interesting path....saved me a bunch of steps and led to the parking lot!

I am already looking forward to going back in the fall!


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