A Day in the Adirondacks: Meacham Lake, Debar Mountain, Lake Placid

9.27.2009
Autumn is here!

Bron and I arose "early" Saturday morning to head out to Meacham Lake. It was an hour and a half drive made enjoyable by all the changing autumn leaves. The road side was smeared in color: greens, blazing oranges, burnt yellows, and deep reds. There truly is nothing quite like a New England Fall. It's perfectly gorgeous.

When we arrived at Meacham Lake, we headed straight to the hiking trail of Debar Mountain. It was a moderately difficult hike that took us just less than two hours to climb. We ate our picnic lunch at the top and took in the magnificent view of the other peaks, lakes, and colorful trees.


View from the Top
Notice how Bron is wearing shorts and a t-shirt and I'm practically bundled up!


Bron Overlooking the Adirondack Park


On the Trail


Vivid Colors

Down at the bottom again, we explored the shoreline of Meacham Lake and took some more colorful fall foliage pictures. It's the perfect place to camp and relax!


Shoreline of Meacham Lake


Enjoying the Day Together

Next, we drove to Lake Placid. It's a cute, over-priced, touristy town that hosted the winter olympics twice. Bron and I strolled up and back down the main street, browsing through all the various shops. Of course, we couldn't leave without purchasing a small bag of hand-made chocolates and fudge. Yum!

It was a long day, but totally enjoyable and worth every ache in my legs and feet.

Maple Syrup

9.22.2009
Although I can't find large size jars of crunchy peanut butter on the shelves here in New York, (smooth seems to be the regional preference) I can find one of the best products produced right here in New England: Maple Syrup.

Maple syrup like this can only be found in specialty stores out West. Here, however, pure maple syrup lines the shelves like sentinels. This syrup isn't the watered-down, corn syrupy, preservative-saturated stickiness found in over-sized plastic bottles. No, this maple syrup is 100% pure and 100% yummy. It comes straight from the maple tree. I can't wait to see the whole process up close and personal this spring! And the best part is, a little goes a loooong way. It tastes great on all your standard breakfast dishes and even better on a scoop of ice cream. Who would have thought? I'm totally indulging in this sweet elixir while I can.

The Everyday Stuff

9.18.2009
Tuesday I was mad at myself because I was tired and it was absolutely impossible for me to cook dinner, wash dishes, and fold the laundry from yesterday, all before I had to leave for mutual. Plus, we were practically in a state of emergency to go grocery shopping. I sometimes feel like I can never get anything done! I don't even have kids to use as an excuse! (However, I do have a tendency to make myself overly-busy though.)

So I climbed into the car--a little frustrated--and blasted an old CD from college. Twenty minutes later I arrived in Plattsburgh. I promptly pulled into Wendy's. I could have gone inside, but chose the drive-thru instead. Then I parked the car not 15 feet from the pick-up window... and ate... alone... in peace. I blissfully had it all: a burger, warm fries, and loud music!

The moment reminded me of my best friend and roomate of four years, Laura Alice. She would have been so proud if she could see me! Laura loved to go for long drives to occasionally get away, just her and her music. We called our room "the cave" our last year of college because she practically barricaded herself in. She read, did homework, and watched The Office on her computer, all from the comfort of her own bed. I love that girl and miss her so much! Laura didn't need too many people around; just the right ones; and we had a blast!

Laura Alice
I feel like I've grown to be much the same way. Too many people bother me, but I need a few good friends. Sometimes I LIKE staying at home on the weekends, doing nothing but sleeping in, catching up on house chores, and then doing whatever I darn well feel like!

It's amazing how liberating a drive with the right music and a little junk food really can be.

By the way, when I arrived home Bron had done all the dishes, folded the laundry, and lit a candle in the kitchen just to make it smell good FOR ME! It made my eyes water. No kidding, I almost cried! I felt a little guilty. Wow! What an incredible guy I've got! I don't deserve him.

Just for Me to Remember

How lucky am I? How many girls get to see their man during the day? I got to see mine almost every afternoon during lunch all summer long! Even now, I can still venture the quarter mile home for lunch with my sweetie occasionally. Yesterday morning I was outside on my break eating an apple when Bron rode his bicycle past me on his way from the barn. We stopped and chatted for a minute. I have a feeling that this kind of living and schedule will never happen again in our lives for a very long time. I've already told myself to soak it up! I enjoy every minute with my husband.

The Silly New York Mind Set

9.12.2009
This post is dedicated to Bron's buddies: Sam, Travis, and Tyson.
I had a very stupid conversation with someone at work this week.

The subject of bears and camping came up among a group of people. As we walked down the hall, I turned to a co-worker and started to explain the wolf problem that has recently arisen in Idaho. The government re-introduced wolves to the area a few years ago because wolves were endangered and once roamed freely there. Yeah, our great-grandparents drove the wolves out because they were a danger to families and live-stock! Now, again, there are too many wolves in Idaho (and surrounding states) and the wolves are starting to descend out of the mountains for food. Wolves were just removed from the endangered species list this year.

I told him the true story of Bron's friend who had a toddler playing outside in the backyard of their home. Suddenly, a wolf came in and snatched the family's dog which was between the child and the house. That's very scary!

My co-worker replied, "Well, it's not wolves we need to be worrying about. It's the coyotes."

GUFFAW!

What? You're kidding, right? You just implied that coyotes are MORE dangerous than wolves. Are you stupid?

Wolf Lesson 101:
  1. Wolves travel in packs. If you see one, you're probably surrounded by three more.
  2. Wolves eat vulnerable animals; this includes, sheep, calfs, and the occasional child if they are hungry enough.
  3. Wolves are bigger and more powerful than coyotes. They stand three feet tall, weigh approximately 80 lbs, and are built for stamina, possessing features ideal for long-distance travel. They can chase at 40 mph. Wolves also have strong jaws with big teeth.
Coyote Lesson 101:
  1. A coyote's biggest weapon is its mange; it's a disease that causes the animal to lose all its hair.
  2. Coyote's are typically loners. Coyote packs are smaller than wolf packs and their associations with other coyotes are less stable.
  3. Coyotes are smaller than wolves, standing only about two feet tall and weighing in at about 45 lbs. They can, to the animal's credit, run up to 43 mph.
  4. Yes, wolves like to eat coyotes. Coyotes can be a wolf's breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
  5. Best of all, coyotes are great target practice! They're also good for chasing and running over with a snowmobile.
    Now I understand why those senators decided to re-introduce wolves. Coyotes are obviously the more dangerous species.


    Yeah, it's probably time you started running, Mr. Wiley.

    Summer's Last Blast: Labor Day Weekend

    9.07.2009
    The leaves are just beginning to change colors. The temperature has been a little cooler and it has been sunny every day. I love this time of year! We enjoyed a simple but fun Labor Day weekend.

    Bron was already studying in the living room when I arrived home from work Friday afternoon. He asked if I wanted to go on a picnic. Of course, I would love to get outside on such a perfect day! Bron had already been to the store and had everything prepared. Let me warn you: when Bron goes to the grocery store, he doesn't hold back. He buys the good stuff! Bron quickly put together some sandwiches. The rest of my "surprises" were already in the backpack.

    We hiked out to a point on Lake Champlain to eat our dinner. It was sunny, and warm, and perfect. We sat and watched the boats out on the lake. Bron had me close my eyes as he pulled out my "half-surprise". Oreo cookies! But that wasn't all. Again, I closed my eyes. Bron then placed a plastic container in my open hands: fresh kiwis, strawberries, and pineapple! Oh, I was in heaven! My favorite fruits all crammed into one container. And Bron won't touch the pineapple; he doesn't like it. Wow. It was all done just for me!

    Don't I have the best husband ever? I love my man! Bron spoils me on a regular basis with his thoughfulness. I hope he knows how much I appreciate him. It was so nice to have a date planned for me complete with sweet surprises. This is just one of the many examples of the things Bron does that shows his love and how well he knows me. I couldn't ask for a better husband. I think this little story says it all. I love you, Bron! (Now it's my turn to do something sweet for him, don't you think?)

    Saturday was spent at the Champlain Valley Fair in Vermont. Miner Farm chose Bron to announce all the dairy cows from Vermont at the show on Saturday morning. Apparantly, Bron has a nice microphone voice. I think he did a great job!
    Bron at the Microphone

    After Bron finished announcing, we spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the fair and eating fatty fair food with our friend Roxanne. We went on a sort-of scavenger hunt. We saw all sorts of animals, commercial displays, arts and crafts, giant pumpkins, a huge sandcastle, tractors, mobile homes, and dogs that could do tricks! It was a great afternoon. I love the fair.

    Eating Dairy Barn Icecream

    New School Year, New Schedule

    9.02.2009
    It's September and we're officially jumping into the new school year and the busy schedule that goes along with it!

    Bron started classes at the University of Vermont on Monday. It's about a one and a half hour drive across the lake both there and back. It's one drive that is going to get very long and very boring. But we'll be sure to stock the car with a little extra cash for sodas and sunflower seeds to keep him awake. He'll drive to school just 3 days a week. The other 2-3 days will be spent doing research with cows on the Miner Farm. Other than the long drive, I think Bron is ready to dive into the books. He's ready to get his master's degree underway! I'm excited for him, and I know he's looking forward to his very own research study coming up.

    I just started a job as a toxicology technician for a pharmaceutical research company called Wyeth. (Yeah, I ditched the ophthalmologist office.) One of the best parts about my new job is that it's located literally across the street. Miner Farm sold a corner of their ground to Wyeth years ago. So yes, I can walk to work in 4 minutes! No need to buy a second vehicle. Wahoo! That's a lot of money we'll be saving. The other great thing about this new job is that one has to have a degree in Biology or Life Sciences, and I qualify! My degree is finally worth something. The pay is awesome and I still get to wear scrubs! I'm a happy camper. The purpose of this particular Wyeth facility is to research the safety of potential drugs/compounds. Right now I'm learning how to dose various animals with the "test drugs", take blood samples, and study them closely. Don't worry, the animals are well taken care of by veterinarians and their staff. Wyeth has quite the operation. It's a little overwhelming! But I'm learning new things every day right now and enjoying my new job very much. Now you know where advil and ibuprofen come from!

    On top of work, I'm the new Young Women's counselor for the girls in our branch. My Tuesday nights will now be spent at mutual with the girls having fun doing "enriching" activities.

    Last Thursday was my first evening participating in the Sinfonia. It's simply a chamber orchestra. I had a blast sight-reading the new material and the conductor has given me enough solo pieces to keep me challenged. I think it's going to be a great season!

    So Bron and I will be busy, but that's old news. We have been incredibly blessed! It's just the two of us living here in New York. I couldn't be here without Bron, and he couldn't be here without me. We're content and happy. Bring on the school year!