After our Adventure…

Okay, after the last post, I promise this one will be short! 

Mark and I were clueless about what folks do when their kids are busy!  (Okay, so that is a slight exaggeration, as we had an agenda that included running to Henrietta for a quick trip to Sam’s Club.)  Mark decided to take the long way from Victor, which meant going through the picture-perfect town of Pittsford.

As Mark drove along the road,  a thought suddenly popped into my head!  I remembered Carly telling me about a charming restaurant she frequents with her mother-in-law and her kids that sits right on the Erie Canal.  As I explained to Mark, he listened and made the appropriate turns that lead to the unique “village” of shops located there.  Mark became a little frustrated, however, trying to figure out where one parks a pickup truck in a tight area.  Also, it seemed a bit of a challenge to spot handicapped parking.

After circling around a bit,  we finally found a place that wasn’t designated for a specific business and we were off and on our way to the restaurant.  (Now, I must explain that not wanting to feel like a total tourist on vacation,  I lovingly secured my Nikon camera in its bag and tucked it under the seat. This was a little unsettling, but I have been encouraging myself to learn to take “better than good” photos with my cell phone. ) Thus, my purse, containing my cell phone wnt with us to the restaurant.

We were seated on the lower level of the restaurant,  sitting only a few feet from the Erie Canal!  It was so beautiful and I can’t imagine how the scenery could have been any more pleasing! The next two photos are of Aladdin’s Natural Eatery at Schoen Place.

Mark and I ordered and while awaiting our food to arrive, I asked Mark if it would be rude for me to walk around for just a little bit.  Mark told me to go ahead, so I walked just a few yards along the canal.  This was so beautiful and I felt like I could have walked for miles! Of course, the abundant plantings hanging from the street lamps just added to the nearly magical atmosphere!

There are cute little packet boats leaving at designated times, taking tourists on a trip along the canal.

Feeling so pleased with our little find,  I retreated back to the table with Mark.  Shortly after arriving at the table,  our food was served.  As Mark and I sat eating our big and delicious Greek salads and appetizer plate,  the little boat Sam Patch made its way past us.  Delightful. 

Mark and I were totally pleased with our experiece at this restaurant.  The food was plentiful, delicious, and the price was astronomical!  I don’t know when Mark and I have enjoyed ourselves in a very long time!

After our meal, Mark and I went to the small kiosk where tickets are sold for the Sam Patch. We discovered that although that particular boat doesn’t have access for a wheelchair,  there is another boat near Rochester that does.  The name of the boat is the Mary Jemison.  Perhaps that name rings a bell, as that is the name of the “white woman of the Genesee” whom I mentioned when we last visited Letchworth State Park. 

I think I am feeling yet another adventure coming on in the not too distant future!

What to Do…

While the kids went shopping with their friends at the mall!  Michelle and Ben met up with several friends yesterday, so Mark and I were on our own. 

Mark had discovered long ago that the GPS he uses in the truck is very good for finding parks and places to visit.  After dropping the kids off at the mall, he asked if I might like to visit a small park located a short distance from the mall.  The name of the park is rather curious….Power Mill Park.  Hmmm…..

Monroe County,  like New York State (well, perhaps until current governor, anyway!)  has generously offered a story board at the park which gives a nice little history lesson!  If you chose to enlarge the above photo, you can read a bit for yourself, or I will give the condensed version!

Powder Mill Park did not start out as a park, but as a powder mill for making blasting powder, used primarily in the coal mining business.  It was begun by a man who previously worked at a manufacturing plant in Connecticut.  He chose the location because it was isolated from civilization (assuring less of a threat in the event of an explosion!) and because water was running through the site, which would be harnessed to turn the grindstones used in milling blasting powder. (The three main ingredients used are salt peter [potassium nitrate],  charcoal, and sulphur.)

One of the main objectives for the inception of this company was to produce the powder more safely, reducing the risk of explosions.  Making this powder was an extremely dangerous business.  The story board provides some interesting little tidbits regarding how employees worked to reduce risks.

Very little remains of the business….after the founder’s death,  two of his sons continued the trade for a while, then moved and began a new venture in Pennsylvania, closer to the coal mining business.

A mossy green water wheel remains, surrounded by ugly chainlink fencing.  It seems such a contrast…the wheel methodically….poetically turning,  surrounded by a fence to keep onlookers away.  The fence must stand close to six feet tall…I had to stretch to prop my camera on top of it and hope for a good shot or two!

As I stood taking photos, I noticed I had company.  A small black damselfly sat watching me!

I wandered around just a bit.  I was so attracted to that old water wheel.  There is just something about water and movement that can entice anyone!  Although the day was rather hot,  the water gently splashing over this wheel gave a sense of refreshment…albeit only visually!

I did spot a tall piece of rusted machinery near the wheel and when I showed Mark the photo I took,  he said it looks like a press.

There is a huge sand hill behind the press and water wheel.  In looking at the map of the original company (around 1852) the hill was there.  It seems amazing to think it never was dozed over for one reason or another!

Powder Mill Park consists of 380 acres.  The county acquired the property in 1926 and razed the various buildings that were vacated and run down.  The park offers lodges and picnic areas,  a very tiny downhill ski hill, and fishing in designated areas.

And, speaking of fish!

There are many, many trout swimming about in two ponds that grace the park because….

Powder Mill Park also hosts a small fish hatchery!

Here are some photos of the various fish I saw.

There wasn’t an over abundance of people at the park.  There were a lot of happy little children, though,  pitching pellets of food into the concrete pools holding the fish.  A very serene and lovely sight!  Then, along came a young man who works at the park.  What followed was incredible! Those peaceful fish became maniacs as the fellow launched big cups full of food into their domain!

As I walked around taking photos,  I came across a young little girl who was just tickled pink by the (hype)activity of the fish.  I smiled and told her they were like “fish fireworks”, to which she squealed “Yes!” in delight!

Mark parked the truck in a nearby parking lot and as I headed that way,  I turned back to take one last photo of this pretty little park.

Here you can see a pavillion that rivals any craftsman’s work located just a short distance from the fish hatchery pools.  This park is small but we drove around after leaving this area; the houses surrounding the park are absolutely gorgeous!  This is definitely a very upscale area!

As we left the park,  traffic was momentarily (well, longer than a moment….one inflamed driver began honking his horn!!!!) by some Canadian “visitors”.

A most entertaining way to spend an hour or two!  But we were not finished!  There is more to come….

Is it a Hummingbird?

Categorically, no.

Does it look like a hummingbird?

Defiinitely, yes.  At least at first glance!

As you can see, the Hummingbird Moth does resemble a Hummingbird.  I was sitting on the porch yesterday afternoon when I decided to look over the railing at the garden below.  As I looked down,  I thought I saw a Hummingbird feeding at the Butterfly Bush.   I raced up the stairs and grabbed the Panasonic camera….now wishing I would have opted for the Nikon. 

I haven’t seen one of these moths in ages!

Saturday’s Activities

Michelle and Ben have a friend whose family owns a terrific hardware store in a small town not too far from our house.  On Saturday, the family had a celebration to honor seven years of  serving the community.  There were hotdogs, sodas, and chips….free!  There also was a clown and activities for little children. A fun day was planned!

Michelle and Ben were invited by their friend, Casey, so they were excited to attend.  We picked up their friend, Jacob, on the way.  When we arrived, the festivities were under way and everyone was enjoying themselves.  Mark and I sat in the shade of a beautiful Ash tree and a stiff breeze was welcome through the open windows of the truck. We sat for quite a while,  then I got out and asked Michelle how long the kids planned to stay.  She said they wanted to linger for an hour or so, so Mark and I decided to go for a ride.  The thermometer in the truck was reading 95 degrees, which translates to 35 degrees, Celsius.  Add humidity to this temperature, and one can see it was uncomfortable!

As Mark and I were leaving the party, so were a couple of customers.  The hardware store is located in a an area with a large Mennonite population and many of the families use horse and buggy to get around.  I managed to get a couple of “parting shots”….

Mark and I went on up to Canandaigua and almost as soon as we arrived,  Michelle called to say that she wasn’t feeling well…at all!  Mark and I hurried back to pick the kids up and Michelle was clearly overheated.  We had packed our inflatable kayaks in the back of the truck, thinking we could paddle a bit on the way home,  but we took Michelle home.

As soon as Michelle was home, she plopped on her bed and rested with a fan directed on her.  After a short time, she said she was feeling better.  She asked if we would get her a sub for dinner, so we (very relieved she was hungry) headed down to Naples to get her one.   Ben and I thought maybe we could paddle a little in the kayaks, but when we passed through Woodville, there was no Eagle in sight.   I had wanted to go out because I had seen the bird sitting in “its” tree earlier in the day.

We picked up a sub for Michelle, then made our way back toward home.  We decided to take another look in Woodville and to my surprise, there was an Eagle in the tree!  Ben and I went out for a very short paddle to visit the Eagle.

I took (over 100) photos of the bird and then we paddled back to shore.  Even with the breeze on the lake, it was just too warm with our life vests on!  You will notice in the photos that the Eagle has its wings spread a bit and its beak open….this is indicative of the heat, also.  The bird was actually panting!  They spread their wings to cool off a bit, too.

Funny….even after seeing the Eagles up fairly close….I’d say within about twenty-five feet,  it is still so exciting to be able to see these birds!  I still feel so excited, I need to settle down a bit to photograph them.  Last year, I was able to capture an adult as well as a younger bird as they sat together.  I wish I could get a shot of several of them together, but it seems they almost take turns sitting there!  Don’t worry,  I’m not greedy…I am just so happy to get these photos! And also happy for inflatable kayaks…

Photo Hunters: Triangles


My first thought for the theme was a sailboat!  We live very close to Canandaigua Lake, so in the summer, it’s a given that there will be sailboats aplenty out on the lake.Their pretty sails are definitely the shape of a triangle!   But,  I decided to choose a much more serious subject for the theme.

I live in the woods and have been somewhat alarmed about the number of our Ash Trees that seem to be dying.  When I first noticed “purple boxes” hanging in trees as we drove along the expressway to the home of my parents a couple years ago,  I had no idea they were for the Emerald Ash Borer.  This insidious little insect, native to Russia,  has invaded the United States and is threatening to destroy millions of Ash Trees.

I photographed this particular “box” at Allegany State Park when we were there a few weeks ago.  There was also a little sign attached to the tree:

A Quick Michelle Update!

Nothing is ever easy!  Having said that, the doctor’s office called shortly before noon today to tell us that Michelle’s bloodwork came back okay.  That means that she has no inflammation or infection in her body, so the rash is probably the result of an allergic reaction.  Phew!  That was what we were hoping for.

The nurse who called went on to explain that the doctor wanted to put Michelle on a presciption of prednisone, a steroid.   Mark talked to the nurse for awhile, then said he would call back shortly, after talking to Michelle about it.  Michelle decided that although the thought of taking meds wasn’t fun,  getting rid of the rash as soon as possible would be beneficial.  (She has basically spent yet another day lounging about,  saying that the more she rests, the less the itching and soreness.) 

Mark tried to call the doctor’s office right back, but they had all gone to lunch!  We waited and shortly after one, Mark called to talk to the nurse regarding where we wanted the prescription sent in.  The nurse was busy, so Mark had to wait for herto call back again.  Finally, at about 3:30,  Mark called WalMart to verify they had received the presription.  They had just gotten it and would need about an hour to process it. 

Mark and I went and picked the prescription up and then we did a little looking around at WalMart.  We finally got back home shortly after seven, and Michelle began her first dose.  That was two and ne-half hours ago, and she said she is already feeling the swelling in her fingers going down!

Off to the Doctor….Again

Michelle wasn’t feeling much better today when she got up.  In fact, she came to me in the middle of the night and asked me if her hands were cold.  She touched my arm and she felt like an icicle! I told her yeah, she was cold! Well, when I told her about it today, she said she didn’t remember getting up during the night.  I think she has been sleeping so miserably, she has been doing a bit of sleepwalking.

Mark called the doctor’s office this morning and made an appointment with the pediatrician who has seen Michelle from the time she was born.  I was happy with this because I wasn’t real confident in the earlier diagnosis. 

We saw Dr. Kaplan shortly after two, and he looked Michelle over.  He told us that sometimes rashes are just about impossible to figure out.  He ordered a blood draw and put a rush on it.  He wants to make sure Michelle has no infections or inflammation.  He said the results will be in tomorrow and he will decide on treatment. Tentatively,  he will prescribe a low dose steroid just to eradicate the rash.  After all the running about for this,  I think this course of action will be good.  In the meantime, Michelle has discovered that staying cool and holding a bag of ice in her hands on and off alleviates the itching and burning she has felt the past couple of days. Poor kid!

I did take a photo of Michelle’s hands ast night.  You aren’t going to put that on your blog, are you?  I assured her, no, I wasn’t.  I wanted an image just in case the doctor’s office said we didn’t need to come in today. 

I did take a grand total of two photos today.  They were of a barn with lots of hay in it. The owner sells bales of straw and hay. The first photo I took just because it was “that time of day”when the sun pours on that gorgeous golden hue and everything that is photographed suddenly becomes a work of art!  I just loved the golden hue of the hay.

The second photo I took was from another perspective just to show my readers just how “much!” hay was there!

Well, hopefully by tomorrow at this time, Michelle will be feeling much better!

Phew….What a Close Call! and more!

Michelle has been resting all day today. She awakened during the night, terribly itchy and miserable.  She had told the doctor and nurse that examined her yesterday that the rash hadn’t itched at that point.  Oh, what to do, what to do?  One of the main reasons I thought she should see the doctor yesterday is because I am allergic to the  diphenhydramine in antihistamines like Benadryl.  When I saw Michelle breaking out in bumps all over, I wanted reassurance from the doctor that she too was not allergic because she has been taking the medication.  When I mentioned yesterday I am allergic to said medication,  the doctor looked at me and commented that was very curious, as Benedryl is administered for allergic reactions.  Argh….

Tonight, poor Michelle has many terrible bumps all over her hands.  They have crept up her legs from her feet and now bother her behind the knees and on her kneecaps.  The bumps on her elbows have also increased.  The nurse told us to give this 48 hours and if it doesn’t begin to subside,  I think both Michelle AND I are going to SCREAM! The poor kid.

Late this afternoon,  Michelle made a little request for a pizza for dinner.  Well, after all she’s been through,  I told her it was okay.  I left and ran up to the store to grab the pizza.  As I was returning home,  just before Bristol Mountain,  a very small fawn came bolting out into the road.  As fast as it was running,  I was afraid of hitting it, as I had been going about 55 mph.  I stopped with about 25 feet to spare, and there was a car coming in the opposing lane.  I held my breath and yelled “NO”!  The little animal then stopped abruptly,  and tumbled down onto the asphalt.  Nearly as quickly as it had fallen,  it lurched to its feet and made a hasty retreat back toward the mountain, from whence it had come.

As I had applied the brakes on the Explorer,  I was glancing in my rear view mirror to make sure no one was tailgating to rear end me.   As it was, the truck which was behind me had plenty of stopping room.  Once I had slowed down to a near stop,  I kept tapping the brakes to let them know I was stopping.  After the little one had scooted off the road, I watched the couple in the truck pointing toward the deer.  They understood why I stopped as I did and for that,  I was so thankful! 

After living here in the Bristolwood for almost eighteen years,  we know to travel cautiously.  Seer abound in the area and we have become pretty much aware of the spots they prefer.   Several years ago, Mark had a close encounter with our Volvo in this same spot.  There was a buck standing in the road.  Mark came to a complete stop and the buck must have become disoriented.  He turned around and ran direcly into the side of the Volvo!  No damage was done, but we were surprised and it taught us to keep a watchful eye out for these animals!


Speaking of animals!  Last night, Michelle decided to spend some time watching movies on her little laptop.  When she got bored, she asked Angus if he would like to “watch a little something” with her.  Michelle sat at her little desk with Angus propped up on her lap.

Since Angus seems to enjoy observing wildlife,  Michelle found some goodies for Angus to watch on YouTube.  The results were nearly hysterical!

Well now, if Scotties are not your cup of tea,  how about a photo I took this morning?  We had some rain during the night and my (newer) pink and purple Fuchsia had some tiny raindrops still lingering on it so I tried to get a good photo.  I liked this one best….

I am hoping and praying that Michelle will be much improved come morning.  It is no little thing to just whisk her off to the pediatrician’s office as it is located about 40 miles from our house.  We don’t mind the drive,  but sometimes it is tough trying to coordinate times so she can be seen quickly.

Ah, So Glad We Weren’t in a Hurry!

If there is one nearby town in which visitors could linger for hours, maybe even days, it would be the beautiful little scenic town of Fairport.  Perched upon the Erie Canal, the town is juSt a delight.  But then there is the flip side.  If a cute little town could annoy one to the point of screaming, it is Fairport! There are two reasons!

If one is heading westward into the town,  there is the liftbridge to encounter.  When the family was seeing a dentist in Fairport years ago,  I cannot tell you the number of times we were several minutes late because the liftbridge had backed up traffic halfway to Victor!  Well, almost…. Every time a large boat must cross under Main Street, the bridge goes up and traffic is at a standstill for many minutes.  Tick, tick, tick…..

The second annoyance comes just a bit farther down toward town and is every bit as inconvenient as the liftbridge.  That would be the railroad crossing!  Be aware that both of these roadblocks are right along Main Street!

Michelle had another bout with poison ivy a few weeks ago and after it finally dried up a few days ago,  her hands, feet, and elbows all broke out in a rash!  This morning,  Michelle was nearly reduced to tears as she told me her hands hurt from the swelling from the rash.   I got concerned and did something I have rarely done for my kids in ages!  I called the pediatrician!

I had a dentist appointment early this afternoon,  so I agreed to bring Michelle in to visit the doctor’s office mid afternoon.  The dentist visit was non eventful, which was good, as the gaping hole from having my root pulled out is filling in nicely.  The dentist merely looked and poked at it a bit, then I left!

We took Michelle for her appointment and she saw a nurse.  The nurse came to the conclusion Michelle’s problem was probably something like a viral contact dermatitis.  She wondered if Michelle babysat or came into contact with any young children.  Not that we know of!  The nurse then called one of the pediatricians to verify her diagnosis. The pediatrician looked Michelle over well and said she thought the nurse was correct.  The good news is that they didn’t give any meds and told Michelle it is likely to disappear as quickly as it came.

After Michelle’s appointment, we had some supper,  looked around a couple stores, then headed home.  Michelle was feeling terribly, so we were trying to get home as soon as possible. 

Then we came to Fairport.

As soon as we came into the town,  the railroad lights began flashing and we knew there was a train headed our way. 

We sat and Mark and Michelle counted 122 slowly moving railcars.  We sat for quite awhile while watching all sorts of cars passing with seatainers of every color.  When the last car passed,  traffic began to start to move,  only to become instantly immobilized once again!

Yes, indeedy!  The westbound train was barely out of view when an eastbound train approached with three engines in front, no less! Michelle and Mark counted about 142 cars on this train!  If the other train was moving slowly,  this train was barely crawling along the tracks! We never thought it would end!

We all kind of giggled about this sign!

As soon as the second train was out of sight,  we were off again, heading toward home!  I told Mark maybe we could be further detained if the liftbridge was up now, too!  Mark didn’t laugh, actually, but the good news is that we had no further delays!

Until we were almost home, that is!

As we traveled the highway leading to our road,  there were flares in the road.  We wondered if there might have been an accident ahead, but were relieved that wasn’t the case.  As we moved along the road,  we saw large amounts of debris that had washed out of the hills and deposited on the road! There were three separate areas where this happened.  What a mess all over the road.  There must have been some very serious downpours while we were gone! This was all about 5 miles from our home.

When we arrived home,  all of the water running on our property was behaving nicely and there were no washouts here.  Thank you,  Lord!  We did notice the water level rose between an inch and an inch and a quarter in the pool while we were gone. Good news….I didn’t have to water plants this evening!