Tag Archives: Catskills

Memorial Day Weekend

Apologies for the radio silence.  A lot of (good) stuff has been going on.  Travel, birthdays, talks, work, etc.  I have a bunch of drafts in various stages, but no time to polish and post.  Despite being a short week, it has been crazy, and we’re off to New Hampshire for a wedding early in the morning.

Thus, here are some photos from our Memorial Day Weekend.  We spent it in the Catskills.  Even though the weather didn’t really cooperate, we still enjoyed being up there.  It was our first trip up of the season, so we did our best to enjoy being away from it all (there’s no cell phone reception or electricity up there!).

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Note Mabel pouting in the bottom left photo. She was upset because she could not find any large puddles to jump in.

We did manage to get into the woods, catch creepy crawlies, see lots of deer, and marvel at how lush and green everything is.

Even in the rain and the cold, it’s my favorite place.

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One year later.

It’s amazing that a year has passed.

Last year, on this Friday before Labor Day Weekend, this baby boy was a twinkle in my eye.

Last year it was just after Hurricane Irene swept through our area.  We were preparing to head up to the Catskills, our little car loaded with supplies and donations for our neighbors.  We had no idea how bad it would be and if the National Guard would even let us in to drop off what we had gathered.

I rushed home from work early.  We wanted to head out early enough that we could travel down the valley in daylight.  We knew parts of the road were barely passable and we didn’t want to navigate the landslides and washouts in the dark.

Mac and I had been trying for a baby for few months.  I knew that it was still pretty early to test for that month, but I would be away at the cabin and unable to test all weekend.  The suspense would be unbearable, so I decided to just chance it and take a pregnancy test before we left.

Mac was downstairs loading the car.  Mabel was running around like a mad woman.  I took the test and waited.

My eyes started tearing up the moment I saw that second purple line appear, faintly, on the test.

I called downstairs for Mac.  He suspected something was up from the tone of my voice.

I had grabbed a T-shirt, this one, and held it up for him saying, “I think we might need this.”

However, in my emotional haste, it was inside out and backwards.  Mac figured it out regardless.

I was crying, he was happy, Mabel was clueless.

We decided we wouldn’t tell anyone just yet.  We’d give it a few days before we shared the good news.  For the next little while it would be our happy secret.

Looking back, it was good timing.  It was hard for me to see my Catskills so devastated by Irene.  Having that joyful secret helped me remember that life goes on, things change, it will get better, we’ll keep going.

It did, they did, it certainly did, and we did.

This weekend we’re headed up again to the Catskills.  The recovery has been amazing, and there is still a ways to go.

Looking at my valley, and my son, one year later, it’s amazing.

 

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The valley. My valley

This valley is where…

I spent my summers…

I rode horses…

I fished…

I lost my first dog…

I stopped being afraid of the dark…

I learned to shoot a gun…

I learned to drive…

I introduced my future husband to my parents…

I spent my last night as a single woman…

I celebrated my wedding…

I spent my first night as a wife…

I told my parents they would soon be grandparents…

I celebrated my 30th birthday…

I spent my first Mother’s Day as a mom…

I buried my last dog…

This valley is where…

I don’t miss my phone…

I don’t miss electricity…

I don’t miss my computer…

I can see the Milky Way…

Seeing the valley, my valley, this way breaks my heart.

For coverage of Hurricane Irene and it’s impact on the Catskills, check The Watershed Post.

To help people impacted by Hurricane Irene, check The Red Cross.

To help the Catskills and it’s people recover from Hurricane Irene, check The MARK Project.

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Happiness Is… burning off steam after a hurricane

Mac, Mabel and myself are very fortunate to have suffered merely cabin fever with Hurricane Irene.  We never lost power, nothing was damaged, everyone was safe.  Other than a more convoluted commute through Westchester, we’re unaffected.

Our neighbors in the Catskills were not nearly as fortunate.  Our family cabin in Big Indian, NY was spared, but our valley there was nearly destroyed when the Esopus overran its banks and literally changed its course.  Residents and visitors to the Valley spent several days completely isolated by washed out bridges and roads.  Homes were destroyed, cars were washed away.  The Full Moon Resort where Mac and I were wed almost 3 years ago had an entire wedding reception stranded there until yesterday.

The Watershed Post has been extensively covering the destruction in that area, and the scope of it is upsetting.  Seeing my valley ravaged, breaks my heart.

However, in this case, happiness is knowing that we can rebuild, that no lives were lost in our valley, that our neighbors pulled together and took care of themselves (even facilitating their own rescue by hot-wiring some county machinery and repairing the road themselves!).  So, we will labor this Labor Day and do what we can to help our neighbors.

To end on a lighter note, this is Mabel on Sunday, on our hurricane-ready deck cleared of furniture, burning off the all the energy she had left-over from a stormy day locked in the house.

She is happy, and she knows it…

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