Thursday, August 20, 2015

Blueberries for the Goetting's

This was our first time blueberry picking so naturally we went to our favorite farm Treworgy Orchards. There were very few people on the farm so we had the fields to ourselves! We ended the day picking vegetables in our garden and dreaming of what we could make with the blueberries.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Riverview Cemetery

As I mentioned in this post, I have a thing for cemeteries. My whole family does. We love them partly because we enjoy history and partly because some of us (*ahem* younger sisters) believe they are haunted. We might be the only family that has ever camped in Yosemite Valley and visited the cemetery. Did you even know there was a cemetery there? Well you do now.

I love reading the epithets, checking out the grave designs, and imagining what the people were like who are buried there. New England cemeteries are particularly fascinating. They are incredibly old and therefore contain a variety of epithets and designs.

There is a tiny cemetery down the street from our new home. We enjoy taking walks down there. It is a lovely, peaceful place with a few little mysteries. Who is Lydia and why is her grave shaped like an elaborate cradle? Why are some of the oldest graves in a line in the back of the graveyard? Why do some of graves only have initials? What did the several Civil War veterans experience?

If you are curious this website will take you to a list of all the graves in the Hampden cemeteries.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

My Top 10 Travel Hacks

I do a lot of traveling and have therefore developed quite a few of my own travel hacks. Here are some of the most useful:

1. Make copies of all of your important documents. 
Have a set of copies in your suitcase. If your purse/wallet/fanny pack/whatever is stolen you will still have copies of all your identification.

2. Keep an extra pair of clothes and other necessities in your carry-on just in case. 
You never know if your luggage will be lost or if you will be stranded in a random city. If you have some extra clothes and a few toiletries, you will be far less inconvenienced.

3. Bring your own water bottle. 
Airports are expensive. Bring your own empty water bottle and fill up once you are past security.

4. Hit up the Dollar Tree or other dollar store for travel-sized toiletries. 
Places like Target charge an arm and a leg for tiny bottles of shampoo. Go to the Dollar Tree or other dollar store first. They even carry clear bottle travel sets.

5. Use a potholder to store your hot tools.
Waiting for your flat iron to cool before packing is annoying. Go to the Dollar Tree, pick up a pack of potholders and sew them in half. You will never have that problem again. Here is a good tutorial.

6. Use an old medicine bottle to store bobby pins. 
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a woman looking for a bobby pin will never be able to find one. Use an old medicine bottle to stop this problem. This is a great tutorial. I personally covered an old bottle in Dollar Tree washi tape.

7. Use Dollar Tree containers to store items like cotton swabs. 
The Dollar Tree is great for containers. I bought a pack of two containers that were originally meant for lunches and use them to store my cotton swabs and cotton rounds instead. Works like a charm! I also use these containers to store bracelets.

8. Use a make-up sponge or wedge to store earrings. 
Never lose or tangle up your earrings again! Make-up wedges are awesome for storing earrings.

9. Bring extra baggies. 
I always bring a trash bag or cheap laundry bag for storing dirty clothes and extra plastic baggies just in case something starts to leak or breaks.

10. Use a daily pill case to store medicines. 
Use a cheap daily pill case to store pain relievers, allergy medicines and anything else you can think of. You won't need to bring a huge bottle of medicine and you will save money by not buying travel sizes.

I hope you found this list helpful! Please let me know if you would be interested in additional travel (or other) hacks.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

A Week in New York State: Niagara Falls and St. Lawrence University

Last month I spent ten days in New York State for a conference. We got to explore new areas and check up on old familiars.

The conference was in Canton, but we all flew into Rochester (about a 3.5 hour drive) so we could meet my grandparents who live in northwestern Pennsylvania at Niagara Falls (about a 1 hour drive). Once in Niagara Falls we decided to take the "Maid of the Mist" boat and get closer to the falls. This was a lot of fun and we definitely got wet!

We did not stay too long in Niagara Falls because it was kind of dirty and tourist-y. A waiter at the Hard Rock Cafe told us that the area around Fort Niagara was much nicer and worth seeing. My mom and I definitely want to check that out next year.

The rest of the week was spent in Canton, New York, home of St. Lawrence University. St. Lawrence is a tiny liberal arts college. The college was established as a seminary school in 1856, but is now denominational today and is known for training the area's teachers. It is a gorgeous campus with numerous late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century buildings.

Via U.S. News Education

We decided to do a little exploring while at the conference. One evening my mom, sister, and I drove to Ogdensburg which is connected to Canada by a bridge. Right before we left we checked out the trails near the Grasse River on the SUNY Potsdam Campus.

Photo of the St. Lawrence Causeway taken by my Mom

See you next year, Canton!