Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Easter Circa 2019 and the Warehouse Sale

I'm having a little fun with reposting Easter tablescapes this week. For several years, I blogged about tablescapes but I haven't done many blog posts on table settings recently.  Tuesday evenings are my favorite night of the week for setting a pretty table since Joe has yoga until 7:00 and that gives me time to make dinner after work and set the table. I have Friday off from work and will start my Easter prep. LOL

On Saturday, we went to the MacKenzie-Childs "warehouse sale" in Union Springs (not too far from their retail store in Aurora). The photo below was taken in the retail store.   A very colorful store indeed.  Like Candyland for adults :-)
  The birdhouse is one of my favorite purchases. When I came home, I plunked it on the cake pedestal and will leave it there until after Easter :-)

 The remainder of our purchases from the sale included  new towels, Christmas ornaments,  place cards, a fantastic owl and fall bouquet, four ice cream pedestal bowls, coffee mug, Easter bunny with a crown, new pot holders, a sunflower dish towel, and new garden tools. All very practical:-)

Wishing all my dear friends a blessed and Happy Easter! Spring has sprung, and we are having beautiful weather. 


Friday, April 5, 2019

Soon I'll be off to the MacKenzie-Childs Warehouse Sale!!

It's ALMOST that time again! We enjoy taking a ride to Union Springs and then visiting the Cayuga Lake area. Our first stop will be the MacKenzie-Childs Warehouse Sale which is on a smaller scale than the famous Barn Sale in July. There is usually a lot of holiday items, and a variety of ceramics, enamelware, etc. Very good prices, up to 80% off, and just as thrilling for me as the Barn Sale. 

 Twenty five years ago, my co-workers happened upon MacKenzie-Childs in Aurora, NY (Finger Lakes region of New York). I had never heard of it. Enthusiastically, they would tell us about their purchases, most of which were seconds at reduced prices that they bought from Richard and Victoria MacKenzie-Childs. 

In 2017, MacKenzie-Childs hosted their FIRST warehouse sale in Union Springs, NY. We went, we enjoyed it. Not too crowded. It was like the July barn sale, just on a smaller scale and MUCH LESS crowded. In 2018, it EVERYONE found out about it and there was a line to get in.  LOL

In the photo above, you will see the "black and white checks". Courtly Check got its start more than 30 years ago and in 1995 it was featured on the enamelware in the Camp MacKenzie-Childs collection, which was designed for casual outdoor use and glamping. The enamelware was called Roasted Marshmallow because mixed in with the overall black and white check were subtle hints of additional colors that resembled the caramelized sugar on marshmallows toasted over an open fire. A few years later, the pattern was renamed Courtly Check after an editor referred to MacKenzie-Childs as “the court jester of tabletop.”

This photo was taken at the April 2017 warehouse sale. And I still love that wreath that I bought!

I'll be back next week with a full report!

Sunday, March 31, 2019


The most adorable red pandas. 
Hyena watching Xavier eating crackers. Yikes
Patagonian cavies classified as rodents and hail from Argentina.
California sea lions

I needed a zoo refresher, so we picked the first spring day that was above 60 degrees for our first visit. Some of the animals won't be out for another month.

My new goal is to "meet" each of the Utica Zoo Animals, so we bought a membership. I have not been to the zoo since my son was little, and I do have very fond memories of my parents bringing us. This is good for my brain, as I need to be half as smart as my grandson. LOL

Here we go, I expect you to memorize all this! Have a great week folks. My blog posts are certainly random these days, and I am only humoring myself. 

Full list of Utica Zoo Animals:

If an animal has a conservation status, it will be listed next to the species name. **Starred animals are located in more than one area**

Wildlife Hall

  • Spiny Stick Bug* – New Guinea, New Caledonia, and the Solomon Islands
  • Brazilian Flying Cockroaches* – Brazilian Rainforest
  • Pueblan Milk Snake – Southeastern and Central Mexico
  • Sonoran Mountain King Snake – Southeastern and Central Arizona
  • European Glass Lizard* – Northern Eurasia
  • Cotton Top Tamarins (Critically Endangered) – Northern South America
  • Carpet Python (Stable) – Australia, Indonesia, New Guinea
  • Pine Snake (Stable) – Eastern North America
  • Burmese Python* (Vulnerable) – Sub Tropical areas of Southern and Southeast Asia;  Myanmar
  • Prehensile Tailed Skink* – Solomon Islands
  • Chilean Rose Haired Tarantula – Northern Chile, Bolivia, and Argentina
  • Gold Dust Day Gecko (Stable) – Northern Madagascar, Australia, and the Comoros
  • Eastern Fence Lizard (Stable) – United States
  • Golden-Headed Lion Tamarin (Endangered) – Northeastern South America
  • Rhinoceros Iguana (Vulnerable) – Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and surrounding west Indian islands

Primate Hall

  • Mexican Spider Monkeys (Critically Endangered) – Mexico and South America
  • White Handed Gibbons (Endangered) – East Asia, including Thailand, Sumatra, and the Malay Peninsula
  • Argentine Black and White Tegu – South America
  • Golden Lion Tamarin (Endangered) – Atlantic coast of Brazil
  • Red Panda (Endangered) – Southern and Central Asia, the Himalayas, and southern China

 Asian Realm

  • White Naped Cranes (Vulnerable) – Southeastern Asia, including Mongolia and China
  • Chinese Alligators (Critically Endangered) – Eastern China;  Only found in small area along the Yangtze River Basin
  • Bactrian Camel – Central Asia; Mongolia, and China; Also Domesticated
  • Reeve’s Muntjac (Stable) – Southeast China and Taiwan
  • Indian Peafowl (Stable) – Pakistan through India, into Sri Lanka
  • Transcaspian Urial (Vulnerable) – Middle East and into India

African Alley

  • African Lions (Vulnerable) – Sub-Saharan Africa
  • African Crested Porcupines* (Stable) – North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture (Critically Endangered) – Central Africa
  • Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra (Vulnerable) – Southwest Africa and Western Angola
  • Common Ostrich (Stable) – Central and Southern Africa
  • Serval (Stable) – Central and Southern Sub-Saharan Africa;  Also found in small pockets of Northern Africa
  • Ring Tailed Lemurs (Endangered) – Madagascar
  • Striped Hyena (Near Threatened) – Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan, and Western India

North Trek Nature Trail

  • Canadian Lynx (Stable) – Northern North America
  • Mexican Wolves (Endangered) – Southwestern United States and Mexico
  • Arctic Fox (Stable) – Northern Hemisphere
  • Bald Eagle (Stable) – Throughout North America
  • North American Porcupine (Stable) – Northern and Western North America
  • Common Raven (Stable) – North Northern Hemisphere

Children’s Zoo

  • Snowy Owl (Stable) – Across the Northern Hemisphere
  • Nigerian Dwarf Goats – Domesticated;  Originated in West Africa
  • Jacob Sheep – Domesticated;  Originated from England
  • California Sea Lion (Stable) – Pacific Coast of North America
  • Red Fox (Stable) – Northern Hemisphere
  • Barn Owls (Stable) – Every continent except Antarctica
  • Black Crowned Night Heron (Stable) – Every Continent except Australia and Antarctica
  • Vietnamese Pot Bellied Pigs* – Domesticated; Originated in Asia
  • Rhode Island Red Chicken – Domesticated;  Developed in Rhode Island and Massachusetts
  • Araucana Chicken and Rooster – Domesticated;  Originated in South American
  • Partridge Rock Chicken – Domesticated;  Originated in Massachusetts
  • Buff Orpington Chicken – Domesticated;  Originated in England
  • Field Mice – Every Continent except Antarctica
  • Corn Snake* – Eastern United States
  • North American Beaver (Stable) – Throughout North America
  • Emus (Stable) – Mainland of Australia
  • Alpaca – Domesticated;  Originated from South America
  • Zebu – Domesticated;  Originated and considered sacred in India
  • Domestic Donkey — Domesticated
  • Flemish Giant Rabbits* – Developed in Belgium
  • Bennett’s Wallaby (Stable) – Eastern Australia and Tasmania

Educational Animals

  • Four-Toed Hedgehog (Stable) – Central and Eastern Africa
  • North American Porcupine (Stable) – Northern and Western North America
  • Flemish Giant Rabbit* – Developed in Belgium
  • Chinchilla – Western slope of the Andes Mountains in Chile
  • Degu (Stable) – Lower Elevations of the Andes Mountains in Chile
  • Short Tailed Opossum – East Central South America; Amazon Basin
  • Vietnamese Pot Bellied Pig* – Domesticated; Originated in Asia
  • African Crested Porcupine* – North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Hyacinth Macaw (Vulnerable) – Amazon Basin; South America
  • Salmon Crested Cockatoo (Vulnerable) – Moluccan Islands, between Australia and Indonesia
  • Red-Tailed Hawk (Stable) – Every Continent except Antarctica
  • Barred Owl (Stable) – Eastern North America
  • Merlin (Stable) – North Northern Hemisphere
  • Sumatran Chicken – Domesticated; Originated from Sumatra
  • Indian Runner Ducks* – Domesticated;  Originated from the West Indies
  • Wood Duck (Stable) – Central and Eastern North America
  • Indian Star Tortoise (Vulnerable) – Scrub forests of India and Sri Lanka
  • Leopard Tortoise* – Savannahs of Eastern and Southern Africa;  Sudan
  • Sulcata Tortoise (Vulnerable) – Southern edge of the Sahara Desert in Africa
  • Eastern Box Turtle (Vulnerable) – Eastern and Central United States
  • Wood Turtle (Endangered) – Northeastern United States
  • Common Snapping Turtle (Stable) – Everywhere East of the Rocky Mountains in the United States
  • Spiny Soft Shelled Turtle (Stable) – Southern United States
  • Grey Banded King Snake (Stable) – Chihuahuan Desert
  • Corn Snake*(Stable) – Eastern United States
  • Brazilian Rainbow Boa — Amazon Basin
  • Ball Python (Stable) – North Western Africa
  • Burmese Python* (Vulnerable) – Sub-Tropical areas of Southern and Southeast Asia;  Myanmar
  • Leopard Geckos – Pakistan, Afghanistan, Middle East
  • Bearded Dragon – Central Australia
  • Prehensile Tailed Skink* – Solomon Islands
  • Egyptian Spiny Tailed Lizard* (Vulnerable) – Deserts of North and Northeast Africa, Middle East
  • Blue Tonged Skink – New Guinea
  • European Glass Lizard* – Northern Eurasia
  • Whites Tree Frog (Stable) – Tropical forests of Northern Australia and Indonesia
  • African Bullfrog (Stable) – South Western Africa, Botswana, Kenya, Zimbabwe
  • Cane Toad (Stable) – Central and Northern South America;  Invasive in Australia
  • Cuban Tree Frog (Stable) – Rainforests of Cuba
  • Brazilian Flying Cockroaches* – Brazilian Rainforest
  • Chilean Rose Haired Tarantula – Scrub forests and mountain bases in Chile
  • Spiny Stick Bug* – New Guinea, New Caledonia, and the Solomon Islands
  • Giant African Millipedes – Lowlands and Rainforests of East Africa
  • Feigning Death Beetles – South Western United States
  • Hermit Crab – Tropical areas of the Indo-region, western Atlantic, and western Caribbean
  • Western Hognose Snake (Stable) – Southern Canada, Central US, and Northern Mexico
  • Kenyan Sand Boa – Kenya and East Africa
  • Texas Vinegaroon (Whip Scorpion) – Western Texas
  • Gargoyle Gecko (Stable) – New Caledonia

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Simple Times at Camp

While waiting for spring to arrive, my husband and I were organizing photos in our computer and came across many photos from simpler times. The years have flown by since 2016 when my job got crazy, and I was working overtime on the weekends. I am very happy to say that I have not had to work on the weekend since November, and now that Joe is retired we could not be happier.

In 2012, I was intrigued with a recycled satellite dish gazebo that my friend Marsha in Minnesota had, and I found some info also on Mother Earth News. We went searching for an old satellite dish on Freecycle, and a sweet elderly couple responded. My husband and his friend disassembled the old satellite dish and hauled it to camp in his truck. It was not an easy project, but I was in great shape in 2012 and was able to assist. Joe designed the brackets that were needed, and our family and friends helped secure it in the ground. The only issue we had was keeping snow off of it in the winter. After a few years of enjoying reading and dining under the gazebo, we disassembled it and gave it to my sister for her camp. I never got around to blogging about it, but the memories are fond.  

 I don't recall where I found this fleur de lis, but Joe lovingly attached it to the top of the gazebo. This meant a lot to me, never any grumbling. 

Believe it or not, we are going cross country skiing today. Mother Nature kissed the mountains with 8" of snow, which is on top of the 18" they already had. This is where my camp is located, and we are in need of fresh air and exercise on weekends. I sit at a desk and stare at a computer all week. xo

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Maple Walnut Biscotti

My love of maple syrup started as a child. My parents would treat us to maple sugar candy in our Easter baskets, and in the summer they would treat us to maple walnut ice cream at an ice cream parlor. All because it was my mom's favorite you see. It competed only  with coffee ice cream for mom.

I help support the maple producers here in Central New York, and was delighted to find a biscotti recipe from Costco Connection Magazine several years ago. It's a winning recipe that we recently served with tea to dear friends. It's rare that I have anything in the cookie jar these days, but I got lucky that day :-)
Happy to Spring Forward! Have a wonderful week. xo


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