Tuesday, May 14, 2013


Is Mothers Day really a day that Moms get to do what they like to do? If so, I had the promise fulfilled bigtime.  Very leisurely, I awoke on Mothers Day and got myself ready for a field trip. I ate breakfast first, at home in my kitchen while reading  the Sunday paper. 

I got myself all gussied up. Took out one of my little coin purses to put only the “necessaries” into. Carried that in my slacks pocket. I wanted my hands free. I didn’t want to carry my big old satchel around on my field trip and run the risk of knocking things over with it while it independently swings back and forth on my shoulder.

So, now I’m ready for my “safari”. Necessaries in my pocket along with my car keys. Phone in the pocket on the other side. I’m ready to hunt.

Off I go to THE SHOPS ON WEST RIDGE. Two stories of vendors booths (200 in all), set in vignettes, filled with vintage treasures and shabby chic style decorator objects. Almost  heaven. I slowly and carefully examine every booth, setting out in an orderly fashion, walking around the room edges first, then up and down the aisles in the middle. I wanted to be absolutely sure that I didn’t miss anything. I would make a mental note of a shop that I wanted to revisit or which had something I would consider buying.

Every once in a while, over the P.A. system  an announcement was made that at noon free pizza and cold drinks will be served in their cafĂ©. By that time, my legs were yelling for a rest. The pizza was tasty and the drink refreshing. A lovely break. Now, back to the hunt.

I saw so many delightful things, if I had unlimited funds, I would need a moving van to get back home. This beautiful white vignette enchanted me. Firstly because the chest on chest is like the one my father kept his socks in. Now it is in my son’s bedroom with his socks in it. Here is its twin – painted white.

After being absolutely sure that I had seen everything, I made my decision about what I would buy, but do you think I could remember where I saw the item. Instead of mental notes, I should have jotted an actual note on an actual note pad. I had to go to the check-out and ask the personnel to help me find my “find”. I described it. Myself and an employee searched the building looking for it. The employee found it!!

Here’s a picture of it. It is a garden table, painted turquoise, with a solid wood top surface and wicker apron and legs. I wasn’t really sure how I would use it but I knew it was coming home with me. I tried to talk myself out of it but I just couldn’t leave without it.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Rochesterians , myself included, so look forward, with great anticipation, to Springtime. Winter seems so long and drawn out. As soon at the temperatures start to reach 45 degrees, everyone breaks out the shorts and sandals.

This milestone could happen in April, but it’s not to be trusted, because snow may appear out of nowhere at any time. I remember having snow on Mother’s Day once.

Rochester has 3 seasons: Spall (combination of Spring and Fall), Summertime and Wintertime. Spring is so short as to be almost un-noticeable. We go from snow plows to planting peas in the blink of an eye. Fall is a bit longer. Lasting from about the end of September to the end of October.

I must confess that I do remember golfers out on the links at Thanksgiving time but that is a huge fluke. Oftentimes, there’s snow on the ground in November. November is the beginning of winter and it lasts until mid to end of April. Followed by the “S & P” of Spall, which is like a flash of lightening.

All our Spring flowers make their seasonal appearance in May. Tulips, forsythia, lilacs, the flowering trees (including fruit trees), magnolia and dogwoods. If the weather is too hot, these Springtime bloomers bow their heads and wilt. Here’s what’s blooming in my yard.

Pictures: in order of appearance.....Quince Bush, Forsythia, Dogwood Tree and Lilacs 

Summertime is a riot of all kinds of flowers and fruit trees.  Summertime’s calender is mid to end of May, June, July and August and about half of September.  Right now in early May, the temps are hovering around 70. June normally is 80, July could be 90’s, and August starts to think about Spall but still has temps from 75 to 85.

Pumpkins, other squashes, and apples come in the “ALL” part of Spall (2nd half of September and October). 

Rochester is famous for its lilacs and the spectacular park (HIGHLAND PARK) designed by the Frederick Law Olmstead, who also designed Central Park in NYC and the gardens on the Biltmore Estate in NC.
 The Lilac Festival is an art, music, food and flora festival hosted annually in early May in Highland Park in Rochester, New York. It is the oldest festival of its kind in North America, drawing spectators from all over the globe. Highland Park possesses a huge collection of lilacs, featuring more than a thousand bushes and hundreds of different varieties. Early May is the season that lilacs are blooming in Rochester.

The festival was informally started in 1898 when 3,000 people came to the park one Sunday in May to see the lilacs. Since then the number of viewers has grown to over 500,000 and the festival plays out over the course of ten days. The modern day festival is started with a parade and frequently hosts concerts and other attractions during the week. The Highland Park arboretum is toured free of charge and is open to all visitors. The fields surrounding the arboretum host a myriad of vendor's tents and food stands.