December 30, 2010

snowy quiet christmas

Merry Christmas from the cabin! It was a blustery, snowy week but so warm and cozy by the woodstove. . . average temp indoors is 68 degrees. We turned off the water earlier this week so for the rest of the winter, we'll have to really rough it. I'm sure someone else will regale you with stories of blowing out the lines.

Lots and lots of birds are enjoying the feeders. Here are some woodpeckers and nuthatches. There are also a pair of cardinals, some blue jays, chickadees and 32 wild turkeys. Let me tell you, when you see 32 turkeys swarming over your yard at once, it's a pretty bizarre sight. Will spare you the photo. Oh! A family of 4 or 5 deer sauntered through too, but when I tried to take their picture they bounded off out of sight.

December 22, 2010

Early Christmas

Saturday my sister, brother-in-law, nephews and Mom came up to celebrate early Christmas. A relaxing good time was had by all--with LOTS of holiday feasting!

Not quite exercise, but a little fresh air before the feasting.

Told them we couldn't open presents until we got a pic of them smiling. . .

Happy Holidays to all!

December 17, 2010

Thanks, Fred Neil

Fred Neil is the dude that had the cabin built back in 1968.  Neil was a prolific folk-rock singer/songwriter during the 1960s who is perhaps known best for his Oscar winning song, “Everybody’s Talkin’,” which was the theme song for the movie Midnight Cowboy (then performed by Harry Nilsson).

Neil’s catalogue is quite extensive and includes songs performed by countless others.  He is one of those songwriters who is the source for so many great performers, such as Roy Orbison, Lovin’ Spoonful, Cream, Stephen Stills., Bob Dylan, The Band, The Grateful Dead…  My first experience with a Fred Neil song was six years ago when I saw the Black Crowes play “The Dolphins” live.  It’s a beautiful song.  I was actually in the barn when they filmed this performance the year before last.  It's Levon Helm’s barn in neighboringWoodstock, New York.  Here's Fred's version.

 Anyway, Neil made enough money to build his secluded cabin up beyond his buddies at Big Pink and spent quite a few years there writing, playing and apparently teasing the squirriels, as remembered by a friend in this interview.

We are very happy that he had this place built and that it has a place in Woodstock folk music history.

December 13, 2010

Snow! Then it melted.

 Those dang turkeys again, taunting us.

 We repaired a rut in the road.  You know it's those unglamorous jobs that really break your back.

 Guess who...

December 6, 2010

First snow

It wasn't a blizzard but it counts as the first snowfall this year.

December 5, 2010

Oops, post from last weekend

My parents finally made it up to see the new place last Friday after Thanksgiving. We had a short but lovely time. I think I was nervous about whether they'd like it or not. Silly me, they were instantly enamored. They were both planning all kinds of improvements including the different kind of trees/plants we might get to attract birds (he's a lifelong avid birder).

Only got one photo, not the best, but here it is.

November 15, 2010


We made fire, cooked pre-cooked hot dogs on sharpened sticks, ran, threw rocks in holes, made a bridge, flew rubber band propelled planes, played tag, and roasted marshmallows. And we made an outdoor table out of the blue stone slab that used to be under the wood stove.

November 9, 2010

November 8, 2010

Smokehouse of the Catskills

We have a new love in our lives.  It's a good old fashioned family owned place on Route 212 in Saugerties called Smokehouse of the Catskills.  While they may have the worst representation on the Internet, they have some of the best German/Catskill food in the region.  We've been there twice and have bought pounds of pure pleasure in the form of smoked venison kielbasa, regular (?) kielbasa, pretzels, pork fillet and skirt steak for the bbq, and amazingly smoked cheddar and another smoked cheese.

Next week I think we should go for their westphalian ham and double smoked bacon cut to order.  Or the smoked pork chops.  Or the various smoked sausages and salami.

You hunters (?) can also bring your meat to them to get it smoked!  We are not that "mountain" yet, but we did post our first No Trespassing signs to fend off the hunters.  Here I am cultivating my "private property" look:
If we were hunters it would be easy to find a target.  These turkeys (7 of them) passed by our window yesterday.

A party!

First, we decided we had to get this rock into a hole.

Pete:  "We need a fulcrum!"

Ah, this is better.

November 2, 2010

Panning out

We've been taking so many photos but have not tried for the big picture in a while.  Mom asked for one that she could hang on the wall.  We tried for it this weekend but the weather refused to cooperate.  Too overcast.  But here are the fruits of the attempt:

Mountain view (after the leaves fall)!

We wore our backs out a bit creating the fire pit from stone laying around.

November 1, 2010

[Evidence of] Bear

We have yet to see a black bear on "our" property but they are definitely neighbors.  In fact our neighbors to the east had to deal with one on their roof a few weeks ago, apparently going after their bird feeders.  We have see bear crap routinely and saw young cubs earlier in the year up at North Lake.  Apparently the population is growing.  This weekend we ran into a 4'x4' area of earth that had been torn up in the search for bugs.

We are ever watchful and have an intelligent mix of feelings between hope of sightings and worry over mangled bbq grills, window screens, door jams, etc.  I think we are willing to take some damage in order to  share the woods.  So far, though, the bear have been behaving and keeping their distance.

October 28, 2010

"The Dude"

She knitted this sweater last winter in anticipation of wearing it at the cabin.  Really, she made it so I could wear it and be The Dude from The Big Lebowski for Halloween.  She researched the sweater pattern and it is actually called "The Dude."