We Have Lift Off!

Thursday night was the kick off to the 42nd Adirondack Balloon Festival and all of the balloons were grounded by the weather, mostly the winds.

Friday seemed to be much more favorable so we headed to the airport about 4:30 pm for the afternoon launch. We had pre-paid parking which I highly recommend! Why? Because it gets you much closer to the airport proper and when you are carrying a chair and camera gear, less is certainly more. :)

You need to arrive early and for ballooners it’s almost like going to a football game and tailgating! There are food trucks and craft vendors. The kites always do well and there are always a bunch of them flying as we wait for the main event, the hot air balloons.

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You never know if there is going to be a launch until right before they go up. All eyes watch the wind socks because wind gusts will put a kibosh on the launch every time. Safety First.

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As I said, Friday night seemed to hold a lot of promise. The sky was clear and the wind sock was limp. Sandy and I lugged our chairs and I lugged my camera and we staked out a spot near one of the chase trucks. We could see a few balloons being spread out and one purple balloon was starting to inflate. There was a good turnout here already.

Getting around is crucial for the ballooners. They have to go to the pilot’s tent for updates and run around on all sorts of errands as the launch deadline approaches. One enterprising ballooner found a new way to get around quickly… A Segway!

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Finally at just about 5 pm we began to hear the whoosh whoosh of the propane tanks firing and balloons began inflating all around us.

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The first Balloon to take off was a really pretty purple-blue balloon that had a elongated shape, not the traditional balloon shape. The wind, what there was of it was pushing the balloon in our direction. Perfect positioning.

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For some reason the balloon didn’t seem to be gaining altitude. As it passed over the airport terminal building toward the trees we all wonder if it would clear them. It did, but just barely, the bottom of the basket actually scraping the top branches.

Not too much farther on they seemed to give up the fight and down it came. So the first balloon up was also the first balloon down. We heard later that it may have had a leak.

But while our attention was fixed on the purple-blue balloon and it’s troubles, the other ballooners were hard at work.

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Posted in People, Travel, Weather | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Balloons over the Adirondacks

Yesterday was the first day of the Adirondack Hot Air Balloon Festival. Opening festivities were planned for Crandall Park in Glens Falls, NY. But then the rains came and the wind gusts started…up to 10 miles per hour according to the weather reports. So they held the block party but no balloons in the air.

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Maybe today will be better.

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Just a quick Hi

Hi everyone! Are you still waiting for me? Oh my, you are wonderful! I’m finally starting to mend, at least my legs and back. The shingles continue to hang on. I had to stop PT because it was only making me worse. I was ready for a wheel chair and the back pain had changed. It wasn’t an ache anymore, it was take your breathe away pain. So I stopped and called my doctor who was on vacation, She won’t be back until next week and then I won’t be available. In the meantime I have seen a big improvement. I can walk again, the back pain persists but much less intense. Yesterday I walked all around the mall without stopping! Before I was walking from bench to bench, to rest before going on and I am limping much less.

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Labor Day weekend I had company and we went on a cruise of the Cape Cod Canal. I have pictures and stories and promise I’ll share soon.  The next day we went to the Roger Williams Zoo. More Pics but I wasn’t walking too well then so my poor friend was held to a mere crawl around the zoo as he waited for me to keep up.


This is the busy fall season for real estate and I’m am working long hours but it will be worth it. One of the agents I support asked me if I had adjusted to my new schedule. (It’s suppose to be 9-6 M-F) I said yes but I got to thinking how time is so precious.

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On my old schedule I had too much time. Oh I had time to write my blog daily but  I was also bored a lot of the time. Now I scramble for every spare minute. There are days I pull laundry out with every good intention and never get a chance to look at it again until 8-9 pm. But I’m not bored!

I expect free time will be cyclical based on busy seasons and off seasons. So I expect I’ll be able to start posting more in another month – 6 weeks as we head into the holiday seasons.

So my blogging friends, you are never far from my thoughts. I always appreciate you and your support! Back soon :)



Posted in Boston, Life, Massachusetts | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

A Little River Cruise

I had to get out. Summer is almost over and I’ve done NOTHING! I know you’ve heard it all before but I really had to try to get out so I bought a ticket on the River Quest Lighthouse Cruise. River Quest runs cruises on the lower end of the Connecticut River. I’ve been on a couple of their Eagle Cruises.

It takes about 2 hours to get there but the cruises are always fun. relaxing and educational. The lighthouse cruise is only done once a year and it’s the only cruise that leaves the Connecticut River and ventures into the Long Island Sound.

So here are a few images from my day:

Good morning! alarm

2 hours later there’s the Goodspeed Opera House!

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A Eagle!

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Look what happens when you do not get the proper permits!

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Bass Fishing

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My spare car is a Helicopter…how’d you like to commute with that?

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and more Osprey

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One More Osprey

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Oh those poor people who live along the river. (They are all either attorneys or car salesmen)

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The rest of the poor people have boats.

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I 95 just ahead.

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Under  I 95.

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Let’s go to the town dock for a little fishing.

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There’s the Acela train!

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This little lighthouse is actually a room for rent.

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There’s the first lighthouse.

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Lighthouse one and two.

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The breakwater lighthouse.

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Now that’s what I call “Gone Fishing”

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St. John’s Boys School for troubled youths.

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Gillette Castle

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Jet Skis on the river

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Wave to the Becky Thatcher!

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Heading back to the dock.

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We’re back in Eagle Park. Time for lunch.

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Posted in Birds, Connecticut, Cruises, lighthouses, trains, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments


About a week ago I saw a demonstration video on Facebook about How to Hull Fresh Strawberries. What caught my attention was the first frame, you know the one that’s like a photo until you press the arrow? It was of a woman with a knife and a bunch of mutilated strawberries with their tops cut off.


I hate to say it but it looked like the way I hull strawberries too so I pushed the arrow. After the introduction which made fun of the woman and her knife and her poor sliced up strawberries they got to the good stuff.


According to the demonstration you can perfectly hull a strawberry with a straw! They made it look so easy.


Of course I had to run right our and buy a pint of strawberries to see if it really worked.

All you do is stick the straw up the bottom of the berry. When it pops through at the top it takes the hull with it. Very easy!

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At first I didn’t hold the straw close enough to the tip and it bent but once I got the hang of it I can tell you it does work and it’s pretty quick.

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But what I like most is that you get a beautiful strawberry that you can keep whole to decorate your plate or dessert.


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Acne…just Acne!

Just got back from the “Cat Hospital” where the Vet examined a very squirmy Rocky.

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I noticed this morning that the swelling seemed to have subsided overnight and clearly  it wasn’t as tender as he let me pet him with no “melps” or aversion. Still I felt as a senior cat that it was worth following up on.

Rocky has lost a little weight ( We can only hope that Buddy is losing too.  ) but no temp. Rocky also let the vet look into his mouth and under his tongue and all was good there. Under his chin, nestled in his chin hair, was a pimple.

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Maybe it was an ingrown hair or maybe he scratched himself or got a bug bite, but that little pimple looked like it could have been the problem. It still looked red and sore.

She also pointed out a ring of black heads along his lower jaw line. Diagnosis: Kitty Acne! Treatment: warm compress, Strident Wipes, and an OTC antibacterial cream interspersed with lots of petting. I am also going to toss out the plastic water dishes and switch them to ceramic. I did that with the food bowls years ago when I had Little Joe because he was prone to kitty acne too.

So I guess cats and humans have something in common. Adult onset acne!

So glad that’s all it is.


Posted in animals, Pets | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

If It’s Not One Thing It’s Another!

So you all know that this year has been a rough one in my little household. First I played the klutz and got all bruised up on the trip to San Diego.

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Then poor Smokey passed away.



And most recently I came down with shingles.


Just when I thought things might be looking up Rocky started acting strange. Well he always acts strange but this time he started acting like he was in pain.

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Yesterday morning he played fuzzy alarm clock and got me up by sticking his nose in my face. Cat whiskers tickle in case you didn’t know that. As I moved over to make room for him he plopped his chin on my hand while I rubbed his cheeks, chin and throat. He was the picture of contentment.

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This morning was completely different. Once again he woke me up by sticking his nose in my face but when I went to give his chin a rub he gave a melp (that’s the cat version of yelp) and almost backed off the bed in an effort to get away. That got my attention.

I got up and tried to approach him but he kept running away. This is not normal behavior for the Rocket-man.

I decided to feed them fish cat food for breakfast. I usually save that for treats because I’ve heard fish flavored cat food isn’t good for male cats. Of course they love it. It’s Rocky’s favorite and I wanted to be sure he was eating. He is. And he had a drink of water after breakfast and he did some grooming. All good signs.

Except when he came over for his after breakfast petting session and I reached for his head…he almost fell over backward getting away. I let him go and he found a chair to his liking and curled up to sleep. If he’s sick that’s probably just what he needs.

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He is now letting me pet his back and if I work my way up from his back to his neck to his head I can gently stroke his cheeks but I can’t go near his chin.

I called the vet and tomorrow morning we’ll find out what, if anything is going on. I’ll be sure to let you know.

Posted in animals, Pets | Tagged , , | 4 Comments