February 29, 2012

Water Chestnuts

Two weeks ago we were in Saugerties, NY, a little below Albany, on the Hudson River.  I already hinted at the strange seeds we found on the shore of the Hudson.  The seeds looked like devil seeds, all black, with points sticking out on three sides.  They are about 1 1/2 inch across, very uniform in size, and uniformly black.  We'd never seen anything like it.  And there were so many of them, that it really had us puzzled. We picked up a good handful of the seeds to take home, and marvel at them.

And then we got home, and I started my search.  But what do you start with?  Nothing I came up with even remotely got near any results, since I didn't even know where the seeds came from - the trees, a plant, the water, a ship, no clue!

Not until M suggested 'devil seed in the Hudson River' with images did I get results.
Turns out, it is an invasive plant here in the US.
Large Photo of Trapa natans
Steve Hurst @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

This is what the seeds look like, my photos aren't as good.
And if you are interested in the plant, here is more
 and if you are interested in reading more about it, here is the website for Trapa Natans.
We found the seed  ----- no, this didn't work, sorry!  But if you google light house, Saugerties, NY, you'll get an idea where that is.  And do visit, it's just beautiful along the Hudson.

This past weekend?  Oh, lunch with friends, a visit to a hiking/outdoor store where I got a fabulous goose down jacket (light as could be) for half price, a visit to I.KEA (first for M), and the movies!  We saw 'Act of Valor', on the spur of the moment, and we liked it.  A lot.
Sunday we had a visit from two little boys who brought their parents and their dog, and we loved hanging out with them!

February 27, 2012

Lots of stuff

It was cold out this morning on my walk.  And the weathermen are bragging about how warm the day will be.  But not at 6 o'clock in the morning!
That looks cold, doesn't it?  But I'm so lucky I get to see something like this every morning.

News?  I got engaged.  Yes, I did.  Or better yet, we got engaged!  A small wedding to follow in the fall.  The emotions that go with it?  Well, you can imagine.  We are ----- insert any emotion you expect to go along with that, and you are right!

February 20, 2012

Saturday in the Catskills

Saturday was great.  We met Karen and Robert in Saugerties, NY.  We were 45 minutes too early, so I suggested driving into the Village of Saugerties.  Only a (charming) main street, but an enticing sign to a lighthouse.  Let's check it out, was my suggestion.  So we drove, and drove, it seemed, down a hill, alongside a drop-off on one side until level land.  And at the very end of the road a parking lot with signs to the trail to the light house.  The trail meandered over an overgrown peninsula, still showing damage from last year's hurricane.
And were enticed by these 'devil' seeds all over the trail and along the shore of the Hudson.

But first we met our two hiking/adventure buddies and took off for Kaaterskill Falls, near Hunter, NY.  We met a State Forest Ranger, who told us, that this is the most visited spot in Catskill Park by far.
 Robert, getting the best shot he could of the water fall.  The trail was icy and treacherous, and we turned back about two thirds in, after we saw another hiker fall twice.  But judge for yourself, that's the trail below:

 My hero!  and ice and the view across the creek below

 I had no idea that Karen was behind me...
And of course, M had to climb down to the creek to take some more photos
 on the way back, and the fall at the beginning of the trail

 The Saugerties Light House
it's also a BnB, and looks very romantic!

Sunset over the Catskills

a beautiful, perfect day.
We'll miss hanging out with you, 
Robert and Karen!

February 13, 2012


After the show last night, we went out to dinner.  On 9th Ave., in a tiny, tiny Italian restaurant, which appealed to me because it was decorated with the Valentine's hearts in the window.  When I say tiny, I'm talking a table for two on the left, and a table for four on the right.  And maybe 5 rows.  Small!
Service was good, food too.
Anyway, here are the photos:
M buying a pretzel - extra salt, please!

Doesn't he look handsome?  The hat was bought at Hats-in-the-bellfry'

NYC, Broadway, I think

And I always wanted to be in New York when it snowed.
Well, I'll settle for a snow shower....

February 12, 2012

February weekend

Seems I only have time to blog on weekends, or about weekends.
I got a call last Thursday morning that I knew would come, but I was hoping I had a little more time to be ready for.  But I do not get to choose.  I just get to count myself lucky that I knew him.
He is the father of a friend of mine, and has been a great friend, who knew both my parents, who was the typical gruff New-Englander, who liked traveling, talking about everything, was a great friend, and we all adored him.
This was taken almost four years ago, when Teddy, his daughter Linda and I visited the Blackstone River Museum, which was unexpectantly interesting and fun.

We'll be going to his memorial service on Tuesday.  You'll be missed, Teddy!

How to switch from one subject to the next?
Our Saturday was quiet.  We slept in, watched the snow blow around for a while - snow showers only - and went shopping, Valentine's Day is on Tuesday!

Today we used the tickets we got for Christmas - tickets to see 'Rock of Ages' on Broadway.  It was terrific!  We had such a good time, we enjoyed the it a lot, it was funny, and had great music in it.

If I remember, I'll upload the few photos I took today, right now it's late, and we're watching the Grammies.  I'm looking forward to seeing Adele sing, I hope I can stay up for that.

And so it goes.

February 7, 2012

Maryland weekend

We're back from our quick trip to Maryland.  It was great to see the little ones, they are the best!  Kate smiling all the time, happy baby, and so big already!
And Noah - well - Mr. Personality himself.  With a great big 'good morning, Oma!'  And cheerful (although his parents swear he can be different, we don't believe them).
We visited Annapolis, the capitol of MD, ate at Chick & Ruth's (great clam cakes!)

The men bought hats at a place called 'Hats in the Bellfry'
we went to a park and played by the river.  Noah threw rocks with enthusiasm:

For supper we went to National Harbor and ate in a really nice restaurant - thank you, guys, it was great!

February 1, 2012


Which would be Wednesday - Midweek.
Mild here in the NE, 60+ degrees today.  But it still feels chilly, with the wind.  And you know that winter will come roaring back, with snow and ice and nasty stuff.
Today I complained about the parking lot at work (and I rarely complain).  I got to work, and not even paying attention, turned into my parking spot - which is on a dirty driveway, but luckily right next to the entrance door to the building.  Unthinking I'd run over a broken headlight, which the guy, who rents the lot next door, where he keeps broken-down cars, left in our parking lot.  I finally complained, I'm not in the mood to pay for two more tires!  The dirt lot - huge - is littered with nails from boards that got de-nailed outside, and despite the lot being checked out with a little magnetic carriage, there is still plenty of debris to do damage to a car.
And I'm sick and tired of people parking behind me, blocking me in.  I am tired of having to go hunt the blocker down, and then make him move the car.  When I want to leave, I want to leave, I don't want to plan in time to find drivers who are blocking me in!  And no, I don't want to smile anymore when I find them, and say the obligatory 'oh, it's okay' - I want to let out my inner German and let them have it!

Okay.  You all can calm down now, tirade is over.  I'm big and strong and make my message perfectly clear when I get my dander up.  (wow, where did that come from, I said I was done!)
Really.  I'm done now.

Change of subject?  What did we have for supper last night ---- hmmm,  I had creamed spinach, and potatoes, and baked/roasted chicken - I love, no, LOVE roasted chicken!  And as a little treat I made some fried sage leaves - good, I tell you, very good!
I'm thinking tonight we'll have chicken soup.  Which I really like right after roasted chicken.  So it's all good!  Tomorrow?  Gyn appointment.   Not so hot - worse would be a mammography.  And no, I'm not getting that done tomorrow.  And I'm looking forward to watching TV, and having someone sit next to me.