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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Holiday Travel in Safety

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SOS...do you have one?  If not, why not?  Your really should.  You should have one in your home and should take one when you travel.  Particularly in this busy travel holiday season.  What is it...it's a hand crank source to charge your cell phone, and a multi-selection flashlight.


Look at all the adapters you get...they come with the device so you're assured you have the right size to fit your phone, your GPS etc.  You can charge a device while using the device as a flashlight.  It has a bright reliable LED flashlight with even a flasher. 


Over loaded at the airport, travel delayed due to winter weather...you don't have to worry about not being able to charge your phone, or get to a plug in crowded conditions.  This little weight device measures 2 x 4 inches and can easily be carried in your purse, your brief case and or carry on luggage.


I purchased 3 of these through my Swag bucks membership and got a great deal.  The deal was a discounted price ...PLUS I earned Swag bucks.  I've given one to my Dad (we have electric going off here all the time due to storms), one to a good friend who had a tree fall on her house during Hurricane Sandy, and have one here which is a routine part of my packing.


Too late to use Swag bucks this year to earn extra money for you and your family; but why not start your account now and work on it throughout the coming year?  You could have a nice nest egg for next years purchases.  I joined Swag bucks on July 30th and have to date earned $155.00 dollars.  I've converted my Swag bucks to Amazon Gift Cards and those have been given to my DD, who has used them to buy books for students in need.  Joining is quick, easy and FREE.  If you join, let me know...happy to help you get started.


Travel safe this holiday season.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Cleveland Turkeys not for Thanksgiving



 Well, it is almost Turkey Time!  Now you may not be able to tell how big this fellow is; but...he was big.  I was watching him out the kitchen window from my friend Jane's house this past weekend.  In my blog post on Sandy's Space, I mentioned heading to Cleveland because a friend had a very large tree fall on the house....this is the friend, and from these pictures you might get a feel for landscape and the number of really large trees......thus the wild life.
 This one you can see a bit more color.  Shooting through the window isn't the best way to get a photo, but didn't want to try and get outside and scare them, or them scare me for that matter.  Yes I did say them....they were all over the place.  AND, since the tree fell on her house and smash the screen porch (among other things), you really couldn't go out the door.
 Travel, exploring can truly be in your own back yard.  While Cleveland may not be the first place you would think to travel..........But, travel is what you make of it.  I go no where without my camera, even to my friends house that's been damaged.  That turned an ordinary day into something special.
 Hunting is permitted in this area, in her yard in fact; but no...you can shoot your Thanksgiving Dinner.  It's a bird preserve so you need to just enjoy these big fellows.  You can however hunt Deer there, which is a good idea.  There are in abundance and are dangerous when they get on the road.


Still trying to work with this new template and am not yet there, so please excuse the mess during construction.

**Did you know Ben Franklin wanted the Turkey not the Eagle to be the symbol for The United States of America?  So did one of my ancestors who has a Turkey on his gravestone!**

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Monday, October 1, 2012

Park City Utah during Art Festival Time

Meet Bonny and her husband
Aren't they they an adorable couple!  They were such fun and so very talented.  I meant them in Park City this past July at the street fair/Art Festival.  This is the 2nd year we've been lucky enough to be in Park City, Utah when an awesome art fest was going on.  Look how well Bonny's glass beaded necklace picks up the fabric in the inside of her hat.

 This is the bracelet I purchased from them.  I love it and wear it all the time.  They've even made the claps an artistic piece, knowing bracelets spin around and well...why shouldn't it be gorgeous too.  Bonny and her husband (am sorry, I don't know his first name), adjusted pieces right there to make sure everyone was 200% happy with the item they purchased and that it fit properly.  These are made from hand blown glass.  Notice the picture to right of Bonny's husband's head...that picture is some of the glass used in their creations.

The photo of her business card doesn't quite do it justice, it's quite artistic too.  Why buy something you'll see hundreds of from a department store when you can purchase first hand right from the artists themselves!  Wearing art is special, each time you were a piece you remember the artist, the conversation, the day of fun you had....much more of an "experience" then purchasing from a large non-personal department store.  And no better way to purchase a quality souvenir that you'll treasure for ever.  Click on Bonny's name above to view her webpage and see other awesome pieces she's created.  She's located in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Arts Fests, street fairs have something for everyone...the young kids were having a good time here inside the blow up castle.

This photo gives you a feel for the number of booths, the volume of people and the popularity of this event in Park City.  There's something, almost every Sunday afternoon during the summer months.  Yes in the beginning Park City was a booming mining town, then turned into a winter mecca for skiers; but....summer has just as much, if not more to offer.  Plenty to do, and see.  This is main street.  Can you imagine main street being totally blocked off in your home town?  Here in Park City, people don't view it as an interruption in daily life; it's an event looked forward to by locals and travelers alike.

Now, I'm not really a fan of yarn bombing.  I often think how many people might be clothed and kept warm by the hours of knitting and crocheting something like this represents...but, this was actually a useable piece of art, unlike a tree or street sign that gets yarn bombed.  What a hoot.   Some of you may know, I knit and I crochet.  Almost everything I make is donated to Bridge and Beyond, to aid the homeless and others in need; thus my previous comment.


People always have to eat, and enjoy refreshments at street fairs/art festivals.  This is a unique hand made corn on the cob roaster.  He loaded it up, husk and all and the corn rotates inside the trailer.  It was very cool, and quite popular.  People were lining up for his corn.

**Bear with me please folks, some things here on the blog are moved, and or gone.  You've no doubt noticed it's a new template.  Apparently many of the graphics from my previous blog template were no longer being stored and therefore 403 error was stamped all over the blog.  This is still a work in progress, as I learn how to operate the blog with bloggers new (that I don't like improvements/system...much like the ones facebook mandated aren't improvements and not well received).  The search doesn't seem to work well, and the bottom of the blog is a mess.  Working my way through it, plus...I might find another template I like better or that works better.**



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Baltimore

My daughter looking at something on the computer facing our little kitchen area (which we hardly used beyond making morning coffee and having a place for our water and wine to stay cold in the fridge). Our accomodations were very good. First time I've stayed at TownEPlace Suites. Definately recommend TownePlace Suites at BWI Getting to Baltimore was a HUGE HUGE deal. Due to leave here Sunday at 3:15 and arrive in Baltimore at 4:30. Wouldn't that have been very civilized? We had dinner reservations for 7 pm at Sabatino's in little Italy. However, that didn't happen. We had one delay after another at the airport and I never got off the ground until a little after 8:30 pm. I hadn't had lunch or dinner. I had had a shared snack and drink with hubby when he brought me to the airport at 2 ish. Didn't arrive in Baltimore until about 10:30. So, when my daughter picked me up; we were both really tired and the best we could do for something open to eat that hour of the night on a Sunday near the hotel, was the sports bar at The Marriott about a mile from our our hotel. Had a quesadillas and wine, then we headed to bed. MONDAY......We dubbed scrubbing day. Remember the song from Pippi Longestocking...it was stuck in our heads. We had our complimentary breakfast at the hotel (ok, not great...but included in the price of the hotel), picked up a shampooer at Home Depot and scrubbed her room, the dining room, and the large common room at the Community House (previously a Convent), where she lives. She picked up a carry out order of something Greek......was good; but I have no clue what it was called; and we continued with our cleaning. Returned equipment, back to the hotel to shower and onto school. She's attending grad school at The College of Notre Dame She gets a little break in class (runs from 6-9), so we picked up something for dinner to eat later. During her break she ate her sandwich, and I ate my salad while crocheting in the lobby. Was working on a blue-green-yellow baby blanket. Sorry haven't yet taken a picture. A neat little wine bar is near school, so we enjoyed a cheese plate and glass of wine there after class. This is the bottle we enjoyed there, and took remainder with us. A nice Pinot Grigio TUESDAY we dubbed pamper day. We took a walk around the harbour area which was very pretty, hot and sunny. We stopped at the half way point and had our breakfast at Bonaparte where we could watch the activity on the water. Some of what we saw on our walk Once back at the hotel and showered, we headed to our massage in Fells Point at The Healing Path. We both had an hour massage that was wonderful! We both highly recommend it. Good Good massages. We grabbed a fruit smoothy and headed for our pedicures which were in WhiteMarsh at Spa on the Avenue. I would have thought it a bit nicer to have both massage and pedicure in the same location; but she thought this was more cost effective; plus she really likes the Healing Path for massage and didn't want to switch from there. We left with pretty toes wearing the familiar and soooooooooooo stylish black flipflops (the only time I wear them), and headed back to the hotel for yet another shower. All pretty, and relaxed we headed to dinner at Germano's My Scaloppine A Modo Mio was VERY dissappointing. It was tough and dry and not served in white wine sauce as the menu indicated. It was in a red sauce. Pooey!! My daughters Lobster Lasagna was excellant. After our desert 1/2 off bottle of wine (Tuesday special), we headed across the street for a night cap at Sabatino's. We wanted to at least see what it was like, since the ill fated attempt to dine there on Sunday. WEDNESDAY Was our shopping day. We got a slow and relaxed start in our room. She had some things she needed to attend to on her computer (work and school wise), and I knitted. Then we headed in search of a brunch place where we shopping in Towson. The brunch place was gone, so we ended up having lunch in the food court.........nothing special;, but got the job done. She needed silver shoes for a wedding. Made our rounds and she ended up with a pair from Aldo's, a little big (didn't have a smaller size), so she's using those insert things. I found a much needed purse at Macy's. We made our way then to a little mall by school. Had some time to relax, cool off with our iced chai's at Panera's. I switched over my purse stuff, and knitted and she read/prepared for a reading assessment appointment she had. This was part of her class assignment and she needed to meet with a little 7 year old before school. She dropped me off at The College of Notre Dame while she did her interview/assessment. Spent some time walking around, enjoyed the view from the gazebo, and then headed to the computer lab to cool off and check email while waiting on her to return. We weren't able to get dinner or even pick up something to eat during the break of her class, as the assessment ran over and there was no time before her class. So, we headed to Waterfront Hotel for dinner after her class. NEAT PLACE! Built as a private residence in 1771, converted to tavern in 1861, housed soilders during The Civil War, used again as a hotel for wayword sailors--continuing as a hotel until 1955 when it was converted to a restuarnt. This brick building is the 2nd oldest brick building in Baltimore. Now thats history!! GOOD FOOD. I highly recommend it. My daughter and her group come here often. I had the veggie quesadillas....yummy and a good marquerita. THURSDAYPack, check out, breakfast nearby at Bob Evans, and head to BWI. No travel problems this time, thankfully. Girl time came to an end, sadly; but we truly enjoyed ourselves. We're already talking about what we want to do next time!! After she dropped me at BWI, she headed home to unpack, do laundry and repack; and headed out to the train to DC where she was connecting with a couple of friends to share driving to Peoria, Illinois for a wedding this wkend. They went to bed super early Thursday and began driving at 12mn. Rehearsal and rehearsal dinner was yesterday and the wedding today. My daughter is the maid of honor. Long drive back to Baltimore for them tomorrow. **Project updates: Finished Mom's yellow shawl (cept for tucking in threads...will post picture later) Frogged pink and blue blanket, just wasn't coming along right...started blue blanket--about 1/4th done with it--though it might end up being frogged for yarn troubles Super busy yesterday, unpacking, laundry, mowing (man was it hot), and spraying again for the Japanese Beattles. HAVE A GOOD WEEKEND ALL

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Labor Day and Art

I don't know if this is Toad or Frog? I don't know if one is a more correct term. I do know. I love this little dude with his Dirty Martini! Hubby and I saw him last year while touring our local Labor Neighbor Day and for some reason didn't buy him. All year we thought about it, and were glad to find him again this year. This is rather large Art Festival held annually at Northram Park. There's something for everyone. Sculptures for indoors and out, glasswares, hand blown glass, lots of jewelry, paintings, photo's and more. The favorite item every year are the handmade brooms. Though, I'm clueless why they're so popular. They're made by the same Amish Man, and every year he runs out of them earlier in the day then the year before. I don't know anyone who uses a broom vs a swifter and or vaccum...so I'm afraid it's popularity is lost on me.

A family affair. Lots of kids hands on activities from making their own drums, to face painting, to weaving, to painting a public art peace and more.

Naturally there are food options. It's always a good time, mingling with friends and neighbors; not sure we've ever been there without running into someone we know. If you're anywhere near Central Ohio, you really need to put this on your list of things to do.

Typically it's hot, though this year was a bit overcast.

I think Frog/Toad needs a name...don't you? For now he's on the upper deck where we often have our cocktails/Martini's before dinner. At some point, I might let him decorate a flower bed. Only time will tell.

Suggestions of names? Sing out. I love supporting artists vs buying something at anywhere USA Mall.
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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Huntington Park Columbus Ohio

Take me out to the ballgame, take me out with the crowd, buy some peanuts and cracker jacks....sing along. Here I am (oophs eyes closed), at our local ball field, Huntington Park a few weeks. What a deal this night of entertainment was. I bought a Groupon (50% off which meant I paid for 1 ticket and got 2), through Superpoints (see badge in sidebar), which meant I also got POINTS! We had a "ball". Huntington Park is an awesome ball park.
Entertainment for the whole family. After all baseball is America's Game. This is ride for the wee ones is like riding the horses outside grocery stores. We passed this on our way to our seats.
Some interesting large historical posters give a real feel for the long standing history of the game in Columbus Ohio.
Some cute kids in front of us. Good friends who really enjoyed the game. Surging the team on with their rally caps.
You pass the Liberty Bell, which has it's own separate history. Sadly I couldn't get a good picture of it without people, or get close enough to explore the history and have found nothing on line to fill in the gaps. Notice the picnic tables off to side? Lots of places to eat if you want to have your meal before you get settled, though there are cup holders on the backs of the very comfortable seats.
Food choices are in abundance with stands everywhere. And...some pretty cool art for the kids to interact with.
Highlights was in attendance the night we were there, handing out book bags with goodies for the kids...puzzles, stickers, and books to read.
We arrived early to pick up our tickets at will call, thus the stadium is still pretty empty while the teams begin their warm up.
And for the hotdog in all of us! A photo opt no one can pass up. Be the hotdog, see the hotdog. lol

Baseball began in Columbus during The Civil War being one of the earliest ball clubs. The first games were played at the Broad and Parson Field, where The Franklin County Insane Asylum was located. There have been multiple locations, and multiple owners for The Columbus franchise through out the years. At times the team was the AAA team for The Cleveland Indians, New York Yankees and even the St. Louis Cardinals. No matter where the team played, or whom the owners were the history of baseball in Columbus is long and deep.

Take your family out to the ballgame and enjoy America's favorite past-time.

If you'd like to have a good time, and save money in the process...I encourage you to join superpoints and be sure and check the local deals in your area. There are 3 easy steps to joining.
  1. register
  2. verify your email addy
  3. take care of your profile
If you join, let me know. Happy to help if you have questions. To date, I've earned $100.00 in Amazon Gift Cards through superpoints. Though you have options how you'd like to convert your points, I've chosen all Amazon gift cards. These gift cards have gone towards the purchase of school text books for kids in need. If you join, you too can be a part of that. When you spin and win for yourself and your family (I do also). Talk about a win, win, win situation. You, Me and ultimately the kids who get the text books they need for school.
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Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Old Mohawk, Columbus Ohio

Around the bar on a Saturday afternoon, at The Old Mohawk in German Village. Hubby and I had attended the annual Haus and Garten tour in German Village. Hot and dusty and naturally thirsty we stopped in at an old favorite location. When we were younger we visited The Old Mohawk often for Beer and Burgers. Was always a fun location, small and a bit of a dive...but a good dive.

The Bar's been in operation since 1933, so it's quite historic. It's located at 819 Mohawk Street on the corner of Mohawk and Kossuth in the heart of German Village. Myles Elk opened the tavern in 1933 after the 18th amendment, Prohibition was abolished. Rumor have it, they were famous for the turtle soup, which was always made fresh. The turtles were raised in the basement. Now, I believe this was more then a rumor. My Mother actually visited upstairs in her youth. Her family knew the owner. She informed me years ago they had turtles in the basement. If Mom said it, I take it as fact, not rumor.
You can get a feel for the place with brick walls, the tin ceiling and the old original artifacts on the walls. Myles operated The Mohawk until his death in 1947. It was then managed by some of his family until 1975 when sadly it was sold to 2 brothers who cleaned it up and tried to make it hip. It was called Tiffany's then. We went once and twice and felt like they ruined it. We liked the Old Mohawk and it's being bit of a dive. Luckily that period of time in it's history was a short 2 years, when the current owner purchased it and once again made it The Old Mohawk.
You can see a time line of it's history on their menu. The menu...well typical bar food.

Sorry this photo is a bit dark, as I was looking towards the windows.

It's a comfortable, come as you are place with a reasonable variety of food selections, beer selections, wines and mixed drinks. Prices are good, service was a bit slow the day we were there. However, to be fair...I think they'd been beyond busy because of the tour. So, I don't hold that against them, and do plan to return. We had a snack....a HUGH order of nacho grande for $9.59 between the 2 of us and didn't eat it all. Excellent appetizer to share. I had a reasonably good margarita while hubby had a beer. We left refreshed and full.

Appropriate for couples, and small groups. It's not particularly family oriented which is fine to my way of thinking. It's small and not really room for kids to move about. Casual dress.

Recommend you give it a try. In case you're curious....there is no turtle soup on the menu, nor turtles in the basement.

Check back for when, where and how to travel any day of the week. And remember Monday is Menu Monday. Ahead for change, so posting this a day early
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Friday, August 3, 2012

Car Travel and Summer Family Vacations

Pack the car and grab the kids and take your family vacation. Yes pack the car, not board the plane. Cars travel is much more suited to a family vacation then plane travel. Something families should consider before they book those expensive plane tickets and spend money that makes the vacation more expensive then it needs to be.

Why car travel over plane travel?
  1. It's far more cost effective
  2. You can do it on your time table (like traveling around kids nap times)
  3. You can stop when you need to for bathroom breaks (not wait til the light goes on that it's ok, while your child moans that he or she has to go, not wait til it's smooth in the air, not wait til 300 ish other passengers make their way to the itty bitty bathroom)
  4. You can see interesting things along the way
  5. You can play family games and carry on conversations (often not possible on the plane because it's too loud with the motor noise and that off the other 300 ish passengers)
  6. You can eat when you need to, not work around flight delays.
  7. The kids can move a little, lay down and nap if need be.
Why do so many families opt for plane travel vs car travel?
  1. They perceive it's easier and faster.
  2. Depending on where you're going it might or might not be faster.
  3. Based on what I've seen in my travels....there is NOTHING about it that's easier.
  • Kids crying because they don't under security
  • Kids crying because they don't understand not being able to eat or go potty when they want
  • Kids crying because they don't understand delays
  • Kids crying because they don't want to stay buckled
  • Kids crying and wining because they don't understand or like that they have to turn off the movies, their games, or their music
  • Kids crying because they're just plain worn out from getting up too early, running through the airport, not being able to carry or pull their luggage
  • Parents irritable because they kids are wearing them out, and they are stressed
  • parents irritable because they can't get all 4 seats together (or even 3, cause they didn't bother to check in ahead of time
  • Kids general unhappy because they can't sit that long, and not self entertain
When you travel by car, you can the actual trip, not just the destination part of the vacation.

If you feel you must travel with the young kids by plane............next post. Making plane travel non stressful takes LOTS of work, and preplanning. Do stop back in.
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