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Posts Tagged ‘nature’

Overall it’s been a fairly mild winter.  I am just finally getting to blog these pretty pix of Cornwall, CT .   We were surprised to wake to a snowstorm after a week of 50 degree weather in the city.  The kids had only one snow day off from school this year – and it felt as if they had a snowball fight in the morning, and then a melted yard by afternoon.  In a sense I am happy to see hyacinth and tulip buds already emerging in our front yard… but this day in the snow was definitely a peaceful and fun one:  IMG_4695IMG_4709IMG_4710IMG_4711IMG_4713

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We have a thing for bird watching, and this was a perfect time of year to catch young chicks springing up in the low brush around the water. We also saw gators, iguanas and more sunshine than we could fit in our suitcases for the flight home. Now with snow coming our way, I wish I could be back there:

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can you spot the gator in there?
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I’m trying to take a new approach to winter: if you can’t beat it, join it!  It was hella cold on Thanksgiving – like 8 degrees where we were in Connecticut.  But I figured out if I had all the right warm clothing on, a refreshing walk in the snow can really clear your head. The kids loved following a frozen stream and then whittling their found branches into walking sticks.

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the whole gang!

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the lake was starting to thaw by Saturday

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yay some sunshine!

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dreary weather but good hiking

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Zoe loves eating snow

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whittling away

and the better shots, by my husband:
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We had such a great time that we decided to return on the weekend.  So glad we did.. the good weather and fun wouldn’t stop:

 

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Zoe ‘modeling’ on a dune

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inside the barn

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upstairs the girls play with Barbies in the loft!

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blue crabs everywhere on the beach

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even Louie is relaxing into beach mode!

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I finally got around to seeing a National Park on the west coast!  Yosemite is more amazing in person than in pictures, but here’s a try at showing it in photos.  We hiked for up to 4-6 hours a day (some of us more than others) and got great weather.  We slept great after long hikes uphill, and enjoyed 78 degree days and cooler nights.  We enjoyed all this for a couple days with cousins Jake and Tali, and then finished the ‘rural’ leg of our tour with a brief bout of fishing at Sierra National Forest/Bass Lake area.  The air here is sooooo clean!  I felt headache-free for a week!

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the drive between Santa Rosa and Yosemite area … wildflowers on hills

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John Muir was here!

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El Capitan is so impressive in person

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waterfalls waterfalls everywhere!

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fresh air hiking with cousins

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Ezra under a rainbow at Vernal Falls/Nevada Falls mist trail

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Gone fishing at Bass Lake Sierra Natl Park

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As the weekends here grow colder (yes, they already are!) we joined some friends to try on some ‘glamping’ (glamorous camping) in the woods.   I basically lived in the one pair of corduroy pants,  fleece and scarf that I packed – and my bathing suit was largely ignored.  But this was not the case for my husband and Ezra who braved the (slightly warmer) pond to try on some new and crazy water sports!  This is the last week before school starts here in NYC and – I have to say – this summer went by far far too quickly.

(a special thank you to the Marten family for letting us join along for the fun!)

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waking to fog on the lake.. or is that frost?

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Zoe practices her gymnastic skills on a slack line by the kids’ tree tent

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The Martens have a way of decorating tent entrances!

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Ezra and Zoe love playing in here..

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caught a fish!

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jet ski!

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Yeah, there was even a water jet pack to try on .. and of course my husband tried it

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My husband had the brilliant idea (really, it was brilliant) to get up early and get to Watkins Glen State Park before anyone else got there.  Although I looked sleepy in photos and was exhausted by noon, it was great to walk the park before the throngs of tourists came.  The best part was: the sun hit the waterfalls in a way that created rainbows in several sections of the park.  As we descended near noon we found maddening crowds and a natural daylight that didn’t highlight the waterfalls like the early morning light had.  I’m glad we rose early!

Some info on Watkins Glen from wikipedia:

“Watkins Glen is south of Seneca Lake in Schuyler County in New York’s Finger Lakes region. The park’s lower part is near the village, while the upper part is open woodland. It was opened to the public in 1863 and was privately run as a tourist resort until 1906, when it was purchased by New York State.

The centerpiece of the park is a 400-foot-deep narrow gorge cut through rock by a stream – Glen Creek – that was left hanging when glaciers of the Ice age deepened the Seneca valley, increasing the tributary stream gradient to create rapids and waterfalls wherever there were layers of hard rock. The rocks of the area are sedimentary of Devonian age that are part of a dissected plateau that was uplifted with little faulting or distortion. They consist mostly of soft shales, with some layers of harder sandstone and limestone.

The park features three trails – open mid-May to early November – by which one can climb or descend the gorge.” 

Seriously isn’t this place amazing?!

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from behind the falls

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my husband getting shots

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I’m his sleepy muse at 7 a.m

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