Saturday, June 27, 2009

Summer



Summer time is finally here, one of my favorite seasons! Great things ahead; flowers, garden tomatoes, fresh herbs, farmers' markets, beach, sun tea, fireflies, pool parties and dining “al fresco” with friends and family, are just a few to mention.


Petunias


Clematis


Potentilla, Tumpet Vine & Lacecap Hydrangeas


Seemed like winter did not want to end and then spring was quite wet, lots of rain. In between the raindrops though, we managed to plant our annuals and we also created a new bed in a small corner of our yard. Last year we planted a white Pee Gee Hydrangea in this area, it appears to be pretty happy there, so this year I decided to add more of the same, plus some of the "Endless Summer" variety also in white.


Before

After


"Garden Beauties" - Daylily



"Endless Summer" Hydrangea, I planted these about 4 years ago, I never feed them, I just let them be. I get an array of colors from blue to pink, they're absolutely gorgeous!


Astilbe


Potentilla & Roses




This was the last of my Peonies, what a great crop I had this year, I miss them already, but I look forward to enjoying them again next spring.



Home grown tomatoes + fresh mozzarella + fresh basil + evoo = happiness.




So now that all the hard work is done, it's time to sit back, relax and enjoy this wonderful time of year!

❀ ❀ ❀

Monday, June 22, 2009

Marge

This past Friday we had to say good-bye to our beloved dog Marge. A couple of weeks ago, she was diagnosed with a heart condition. She was an older dog, we don't exactly know how old, because she was a rescued dog that had once been astray. Last Tuesday we applied an inexpensive over the counter flea and tick medication on her. This medication gave her a great deal of discomfort and stress, which we think worsened her condition.
Marge came to live with us about 7 years ago. A friend of my daughter’s found her on the streets of Rockaway, Queens. She was frail, skin and bones; they took her in, fed her and sheltered her. The next day she disappeared from his fenced in backyard, they were both very upset, they were not sure if some one had taken her or some how she had managed to escape.
They looked and looked for her with no luck in finding her. The following weekend they decided to look in the surrounding animal shelters. They found her!
This time, my daughter decided that the best place for Marge was at our home in the country. I was not to pleased; I really did not want to have another dog after our last one. I liked the freedom and did not want the commitment and responsibilities associated with owning a dog.
Well, we agreed to give Marge a chance. It didn't take long for me to fall in love with her. She was the sweetest thing.
Marge was a true lady, she was very smart and loving, her aim was to please, and she did. I'll never forget how much she used to hate getting her paws wet and how much she loved clean bed covers on her doggy bed.
She was part of the pack, always wanted to be with us, even at dinner time, she would not eat till we sat down to eat.
She loved belly rubs and carrots for treats, and sitting outside when it was a beautiful sunny day.
We took her with us on trips, whenever we could, we loved her company and she was a good traveler.
We knew our time with her would soon come to and end because of her age. She was losing her hearing and sleeping a great deal. You think you're prepared but when it really happens you realize you were not.
The last three days of her life were not very pleasant for her nor for us, and so, we said our good-byes on Friday morning.
Over the weekend my daughter rescued Marge one last time, she decided that she did not want her in a communal burial, as we had decided on Friday. She now rests in peace not far from home.


I always thought she should have been named Lucky, because she was the luckiest dog I've ever met. We will never know what her story and her life was before she became our pet, we always wondered, but at the same time we were so glad and so fortunate to have her in our lives.



"We love you Marge and we will never forget you".

❤❤❤



Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Quadricentennial Hudson River Day



This past Sunday we celebrated the 400th anniversary of Captain Henry Hudson's discovery of the Hudson River. "River Day" was the name of the event, it featured a relay flotilla, which included a replica of Henry Hudson's ship the Half Moon along with the Onrust, the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, the Mystic Whaler and many other boats.
My husband and I decided to celebrate this wonderful day and gorgeous weather with a kayak tour on the river. We're very fortunate to have in our town, Storm King Adventure Tours http://www.stormkingadventuretours.com/. They offer a multitude of outdoor activities year round. From kayaking in the summer, hiking, mountain biking to snowshoeing in the winter.
It was the first time for me on a kayak, and I was quite nervous. We were given safety instructions and words of advise and then, we were off.


We decided on a double passenger kayak, since it was my first time, I wanted the safety of my husband near me. Once we got the hang of it, it was a lot of fun!
We traveled down river with our group looking for the flotilla, which was on it's way up from West Point.




Finally after all the anticipation, we saw them slowly coming towards us.


The Half Moon, a replica of the Dutch ship of exploration commanded by Henry Hudson in 1609.


Hudson River Sloop Clearwater and the FDNY Fireboat



TheMystic Whaler and the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater


The Onrust

The Onrust


The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater and the Mystic Whaler



The next day I drove to Newburgh to take a closer look at the Half Moon.




Spending an afternoon on the river, and admiring the natural beauty that surrounds us, really makes you realize how fortunate we are to live here.



☼ ☼ ☼