Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Domestic Art,...

This sampler is very old and yellowed. I don't dare take it out of the frame and wash it as it will most likely disintegrate. It was done by Eliza Ainger at age 13.

Eliza was my great-great-grandmother. It is dated 1830. There are the usual alphabet letters, and numbers. The last full line reads Eliza Ainger, Westport, NY, Age 13 and the final line is only the year,...1830.

The blue lettering was inserted on the photo by me. Eliza was mother to Mary, who was mother to Sylvester, who was mother to Margaret who was mother to me! Can you picture a little girl struggling by kerosene lamp-light over a needle, colored threads and cloth?

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Yesterday the snowstorm that hit the North Country of New York stretched all the way across the country from Texas to Maine causing a lot of damage where it was nasty freezing rain and ice. I received the phone call just after 6 a.m. that there would be no school, a decision made in anticipation of the forecast of dangerous conditions to come. At 8:30 a.m. it was just a "dusting" of dry powder snow on the deck.

I did some housework, then at noon settled down to watch a movie, "Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee" with a powerful cast, August Schellenberg (Sitting Bull), Gordon Tootoosis (Red Cloud), and Adam Beach (Dr. Charles Eastman). It was done with great respect and historic accuracy. I am glad I bought the dvd as I need to watch it again to catch things I may have missed.
By 3 p.m. we had 5.5 inches of snow. Still dry, still powder...
By 9 p.m. it was still snowing light powder, with no indication of freezing rain. This far north we were certainly lucky. 8 inches of fresh powder, the skier's delight!

This morning I measured -- only one more inch fell overnight. So instead of the 12-16 inches forecast we only totalled 9 inches. My son has plowed my driveway, now I need to shovel off the deck ... again!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Winter Reading,...

If you aren't a skier, winter time here in the Adirondacks is a great time to do some reading. My grandson, who is at college in SUNY Cobleskill, was assigned this book. When he told me about it I immediately wanted to read it. Just finishing a book, I'm now ready to start this one. And today when reading Betsy from Tennessee's blog she was talking about a book she and her husband are reading. She invited others to share their current books. What great timing Betsy!

"Maiden Voyage" by Tania Aebi, 1989. ... "an exciting tale of an extraordinarily brave and romantic adventure", a quote from Walter Cronkite on the front cover. The back cover describes the story as the tale of an eighteen-year-old girl without a life goal. Her father offers her a challenge of either a college education or a twenty-six-foot sloop. But only one. She couldn't have both. The catch was that if she chose the sloop she had to sail around the world alone! Even though this book is now 20 years old I think it will have excitement and lessons for life within the pages. Those things are never outdated. I can't wait to turn the first page later today after my weekend chores are done!

I ordered mine used from for $6.99 and was very happy with the nearly new condition. OK,.. I'm off to do laundry and then settle down with my book!

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Inez Milholland was born August 6, 1886 in Brooklyn, NY. The family owned property in the eastern foothills of the Adirondacks and summered there, at "Meadowmount".... That home is now a summer camp for music students, with alumni including Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman.

Inez attended Vassar College, graduating in 1909. While there she was a strong worker protesting the fact that women were not yet allowed to vote. She went on to become a well known leader and public speaker in the women's suffrage movement.

Here Inez is riding in a parade in 1912 in New York City. The photo was made into a post card.

On the back of this postcard is a note from Inez's sister Vida to my grandmother. I'm sure there was a wonderful story about listening to a radio, but I do not know what it was.

Here is Vida on the left with her famous sister, Inez.

In 1913, on the day before Woodrow Wilson's innauguration, Inez led a suffrage parade in Washington, D.C.

This is the poster for the National Women's Party, featuring an artist's rendition of Inez in that parade in Washington. Inez married that year, becoming the bride of Eugen Boissevain. Three years later in 1916 Inez died at the age of 30 while on a speaking tour in California. Several years later Mr. Boissevain married Edna St.Vincent Millay.

To a "north country" neighbor, many thanks to you Inez, for your hard work so many years ago in bringing the vote to women!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Big Day,...

A big day for the country yesterday. In our school we had televisions in several locations. I happen to have lunch duty in the cafeteria at the time of President Obama taking the Oath of Office. Here are students in grades 4-6 watching intently as that happened.

The kids were quiet for most of it, fascinated. However, during the speech they clapped and cheered for various points.
This age student only knows about segregation and persecution what they read in books. Some of us remember seeing it on the nightly news. Congratulations U.S. of A.!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Looking Back,...

Part of my personal "Adirondack View" is looking back at my family's past. The summer of 1924 my mother had just graduated from high school. She had chosen nursing as her career. She also had decided to not stay close to home, but to travel to Amsterdam City Hospital near Schenectady, NY to complete her nurses training. This is a newsprint photo of the hospital at that time. I believe the hospital is now called Amsterdam Memorial Hospital and is in a totally new building and locaton.

Nursing students stayed at the house next door to the hospital. Can you see the nurses sitting on the porch?
My mother's class called themslves "The Baseball Nine"... Mom is on the far left.
This photo, Mom again on the left, shows the uniforms of the day.

What do you think about this operating room?

As I remember Mom told me this was the sterilizer. This is one of her friends posing for the picture.
Mom in her "scrubs"...

After she graduated she went on to New York City to do post graduate study at Manhatten Eye and Ear (as it was called then). She lived in NYC for several years sharing an apartment with some of her nursing classmates.

As much as my mother loved nursing, she loved my father more. So after their marriage they settled in a more rural area where my father worked for the local power company. (another story for another day...) There was no large hospital locally so she spent several years doing private duty in her home town. She went on and worked many years as a bookkeeper, assistant librarian in the town library and also as a teacher aide in the school. She was a bright and capable woman. She set a wonderful example for me to follow.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

A "Heat Wave"...

I remember the old song "Heat Wave"..... "we're having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave,..."

This morning it is only -10° so I guess compared to yesterday a.m. it is a heat wave. Then it
was -22°! This is normal for this part of the country. We always get a few days of these temperatures every winter. Some years it gets even colder. However, I'm very grateful this morning that there is no wind.

Cold temperatures are making their way even into the south. My blog friend Betsy from Tennessee and many folks even in the deep south are feeling a chill too.
I'm looking forward to sunshine as daylight breaks in another hour.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Photo Tag,...

Today my friends Laurie and Chris tagged me in a photo game. Not being one for games like this I sort of uttered an "oh no,...".... and tonight thought well, I should do the post for that game. Much to my surprise I followed the instructions and found out it was a photo I could do a story about!

This photo appeared in my blog several weeks ago, back in the early fall. I was waiting for a friend to come out of the mall. I had already gone out to the car and she was to come out when she finished shopping. In front of the car was a very small tree and it was full of birds having a feast on some berries or seeds there. It was a bright sunny day and even the birds are enjoying the last good weather of warm days before they slide into the cold of fall and winter.

The rules are that you open your fifth folder of photos, and select the fifth photo in the folder. Then you tag five more blogging friends to do the same.

Sorry, but you are "IT"....

I thought it might be a good chance to introduce some old friends and also some new friends that I've recently discovered in the blog world. If you aren't already reading their blogs I think you will find them very interesting.

Monday, January 12, 2009

"Sequoia Lodge"...

In the late 1930s after my mother and father were married, they bought some land on a local pond. The idea was to build a boathouse on the water and a camp up on a ledge overlooking the water and mountains. The boathouse was built with logs from trees on the property. All done by my mother and father.

Soon they decided that lugging all those supplies up the hill to the ledge was not going to be much fun. So they moved it back from the edge of the pond and turned the boathouse into their camp.

Here is my mother, some time around 1942. Because of the tall white pine trees she named the camp "Sequoia Lodge." Of course she knew that they weren't true Sequoia trees, but they towered over the little camp in true Sequoia spirit.

The original camp seemed small so they built a kitchen wing on the left and a bedroom wing on the right. Now there was a large kitchen, large livingroom (original boathouse) and two nice bedrooms. I was probably around 10 years old when the kitchen was added. I remember my father falling the trees, my mother peeling the logs. They gave me a putty knife and a roll of oakum to chink the spaces between the logs.

Here is the livingroom as it looked during the 1980s. Pure camp. No electricity, just a wood stove for heat, Coleman lanterns for light and gas stove and refrigerator in the kitchen. I loved it!

And the view to the mountains from the small dock.

Same view, taken with a modern digital camera.

I used to live there summers. Commuting to work from the camp. Now it is used during the summers by my children and grandchildren,...

And even my son's girlfriend's grandchildren. How about that! That would be five generations in all! Thanks Mom and Dad, -- I miss you!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Snowy Sunday,...Again!...

The Weather Channel forecast a snowstorm for the mid-Atlantic region and perhaps as far north as Albany, NY. Hmmmmm....what is this out here this morning? I live approximately two hours north of Albany and I woke to falling snow this morning.

The gang had emptied my birdfeeder. After taking this picture of my little beggers I hurried in to get the sunflower seed chips. They are much happier now, I'm sure.

Still snowing and it's at 5.5 inches.

An hour later,... bright blue sky and sunshine.

It will be a beautiful day!

Snowy Sunday at Chris and Lauries can be seen here. Miss Jean's Snowy Sunday is here.
I have located some old photos that I will be sharing here soon. My blog friends who have log cabins will find these especially interesting. I might even have them ready as early as tomorrow. Stay tuned!...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Snow Day!...

My phone rang at 5:30 this morning. It was the automated message to all faculty, staff and students at our school telling us that we have a .... snow day! Here in the northeast we are getting a mixed bag over the next 24 hours. It started during the night and has gone back and forth between sleet and snow. So far only about 3-4 inches, but 6-12 inches are forecast. Can you see the snowplow on the road down in the valley below my hill?

No pretty view of the mountains today!

This chickadee is enjoying a breakfast at the suet feeder.

This feeder is also a busy place this morning. My camera only caught a blur as one goldfinch flew away.

It would be chilly kissing under the kissing ball this morning!

No matter the weather my backyard always looks peaceful to me!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Who's Been Walking on My Deck?...

It seems that my resident birds have been pacing back and forth waiting for me to fill the bird feeder this morning.

Here is one of the two I keep filled... This has thistle seed in it. The other one has sunflower bits in it with suet holders on each side. Each group has stated their preference. The Goldfinches and the Pine Siskens (!) prefer this one. The Chickadees and Bluejays prefer the other one that hangs in the carport.

This morning's gang... I have a few Pine Siskins mixed in with the Goldfinches. They eat twice as much and are very territorial.

Here are two more suet feeders that I hang from the edge of my eaves, a very bad shot of a beautiful woodpecker enjoying supper just before sunset.

I enjoy them and I never begrudge the money spent on birdfood!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A New Year Dawns,...

The sun is up, peeking through the trees here on my hill...

I send you all wishes for a Happy New Year! May 2009 bring each of you good health, good friends and a good times!