January 27th was Derby’s day on the CuteOverload.com calendar! We were all very excited. Well, Art and I were. Derby seems to be characteristically disapproving.
[tags]disapproving, derby, cinnamon, cute, cuteoverload[/tags]
Nothing like camping and bringing the bears with you. Our bears proved that while bear cans may be resistant for wild bears — the teddy bear has no problem breaking into it.
1. Carly finds inner peace atop the castle of yore, 2. Wright, Marcy, Algonquin, 3. Atop the Castle of Yore, 4. toad, 5. At the base of the slide, 6. We did a poor job of hiding our bear can, 7. We didn’t know chipmunks could do this!, 8. The largest bear made off with the oatmeal, 9. Rocky Falls, 10. the weaver, 11. reading, 12. 07-08-06 038, 13. The Vodka Drinker, 14. Stuck?, 15. We did a poor job of hiding our bear can, 16. Art, 17. toad, 18. We didn’t know chipmunks could do this!
[tags]heart lake, Adirondacks, camping, bears, flatobear, flickr, vacation[/tags]
I think one of the reasons Art and I like hiking in the summer is the foraging! We found lots of wild raspberry bushes along the C&O canal. We also have a couple of raspberry bushes in our garden, which is where the picture of the teddy bear was taken.
When I posted foraging pictures to Flickr, I noticed quite a resemblance between Art foraging for berries and my teddy bear. 🙂
What do you think?
[tags]berries, raspberries, bears, fun, summer[/tags]
We hiked Old Rag for Art’s birthday again this year. Thankfully for me it had rained the night before and looked like it might rain that day — which means once again I escaped the ridge trail. We hiked the other trail up, which is a bit longer — but not evil like the ridge trail.
It started to clear up pretty quickly and turned into a really beautiful day. We made crazy good time up the mountain! As we approached the top, we started to feel the wind. I’ve never understood what “rushing wind” sounds like until that moment. It was so loud and so strong. Gusts must have been 30-40mph. We found a nook at the summit and tried to get the tea house to serve us.
The tea house nearly blew away in the wind, but we persevered and had tea and scones. Then we got out of the wind and back into the forest area, where the wind died down. We hiked back down, once again in record time. Drank some cider that we bought on the way from Williams Orchard in Flint Hill and went home!
Saturday, June 24
After many weeks of careful consideration about how far the car could go, we just drove to the Charlottesville area to go hiking in Shenandoah National Park. Unfortunately, the car decided that it was done. We started up the mountain the transmission started to fail. We tried to make it to the parking area, but realized it just wasn’t going to happen. Thankfully, we were able to pull over to the side of the road and let the car cool for a little while.
We tried to get a little hiking in near where we pulled over — but it was wet, buggy, and gross. After about 20 minutes we gave up and went back to the car. We did see two box turtles on our aborted hiking attempt. We coasted down the mountain and it turned into a scene from the Blues Brothers. We were going 30mph on the highway — just hoping we’d get somewhere. We put something like 4 quarts of transmission fluid into the car — all with a helpful local watching and chatting with Art. The fluid didn’t help particuarly, so we decided to try and make it over to the C-ville airport and rent a car to get home. Thankfully, the long-term parking was pretty cheap.
Since the hiking was a bust, we decided to still have a little fun and continue on the second half of the weekend’s adventure. We headed over to Horton Vineyards. It’s a terrible website, but a nice winery. Acutally, they are considered one of the best winery/vineyard’s on the East Coast. Art had brought home a bottle of their Pear Port when he did the Crozet Show — and it was so fabulous I wanted more. We did quite the tasting (it’s free) and then bought a few bottles to take home. Besides the Pear Port we also really liked the Vintage Port and the Viognier Reserve (2001).
Sunday, June 25
Now, back to the dead car issue. We knew the car was dying — and actually had already arranged for a car loan and done lots of research on what kind of car we were going to get. So on Sunday we checked a bunch of auto dealer websites and got a list of all the people selling Honda Elements in our area at the price and mileage range we wanted. We headed out with list in hand to buy a car. Note — always bring the list with you. I don’t think the dealer would have given us the car at the price if we hadn’t waived the Web page with the car and price in front of him. Plus, when he played the, “you won’t find this car for this price any where else game,” — we said, “Oh — really….”.
Now we are the proud owners of a 2004 blue Honda Element (I guess it’s water?).
Saturday, July 1
Back to C-ville! We ended up having to keep the rental car all week and return it to C-ville – or pay penalties. So off we went. We returned the car and moved the wagon to a parking lot where the people we are donating it to could get it. It did actually make it under its own power. Then we picked up lunch at a bakery we read about in the Washington Post. They definitely didn’t disappoint — both the lunch and pastries were great. We headed back to the mountain that killed wagon for a picnic and hiking.
It was a nice 6-mile hike along the AT, from Swift Run Gap to South River in the Shenandoah National Park. The highlight was two bear sightings! We saw a larger bear with one (or two) yearlings ambling through the woods, and then joined a whole group of people on the side of the road later to watch a mama-bear and two adorable cubs! We also had a great encounter with a deer and fawn. The fawn did some adorable frolicking for us. Oh — and we saw a toad. Toad’s a bit anti-climactic, I know — but we actually saw it first.
Sunday, July 2
I think we’re off to the National Portrait Gallery today. It’s re-opened after many years, and I want to go and see it. It’s a pretty big deal here in DC. We were going to the Folklife Festival, but I just can’t get into it any more. I think the Smithsonian has just done a rotten job the past few years, and taken it in a terrible direction. Between the tourists and the heat — I don’t feel like going if it’s not going to be good.
[tags]charlottesville, cville, shenandoah, at, patc, hiking, bears, horton vineyards, wine, food, bakeries, element, honda[/tags]
Quite the nature-filled weekend. After two seders and before
Easter dinner, we needed some exercise. On Saturday morning we
got up early, and left for the Shenandoah Valley. We planned on
a nice long hike to search for ramps, which are in season now.
We’d found a few on protected land, so we wanted to go find some
we could actually take home for dinner.
We went to Great North Mountain, which is in the George Washington
National Forest. It was a beautiful day, but totally the wrong
kind of environment to find ramps. So — we just enjoyed the hike.
I took lots of pictures on the new camera-phone, which you can
find on Flickr. They are the shots labeled 4-15-06 Shenandoah Hike.
Today we went over to the Arboretum and wandered through the
lilacs. We also hit the bonsai museum, which is another favorite
spot. Pictures of that start here.
[tags]bonsai, arboretum, nature, flowers, shenandoah, hiking[/tags]