Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Veggie Lodge

Veggie Lodge

This would be a fun thing to do with children for the holidays. It reminded me of some of the long abandon stone buildings in Ireland. I found this in a FB comment on this photo.

Here is what we used to make our veggie lodge: Six 8"- carrot logs (One for front, five for back) Eight 5"- carrot logs (sides of lodge) Eight 3"- carrot logs (front) Eight 1 1/4" - short spacer logs (by front door) Four 1 1/2" - carrot logs (to create side window opening) Three 7" -carrot log rafters Sixteen 6" - 7" long stalks of celery (for roof) The foam core board gable ends measure 8"x 6" x 6" The foam core board floor/base measures 8" x 5" (plus extra on the back for chimney if desired) The window is made out of a slice of turnip. Use toothpicks if necessary, in addition to cream cheese mortar to fasten cucumbers and celery. Use bamboo skewers for stacking chimney mushroom "stones."

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Hawaiian names

Hawaiian names

Our trip to Oahu, Hawaii during Thanksgiving was a most amazing experience of foods, traditions and music.
Below is a site to translate your name into Hawaiian. Try and incorporate this fun activity to use on place cards or even tags on cups or glasses.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Janet Elizabeth Lynn
(Laneki Elikepeki Lin)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Apple Picking

One year we decided to experience apple picking in Oak Glen. It was late October. In California this is when it begins to cool down before the winter rains. So what better time for a New York transplant to bring back memories of autumn than to experience the foothills of the Los Angeles area.
We made reservation at a Bed and Breakfast for 2 nights, and planned to tour the many apple ranches along the route. The Saturday and Sunday we visited could not have been more like autumn. Cool, crisp air greeted us along with crunching leaves and apples galore for picking. We climbed ladders and picked the crisp apples to bring back home. We also stopped at various ranches and bought bags of picked apples, apple cider, apple butter and of course a slice of fresh apple pie, hot out of the oven.
Oh...the memories of childhood…some never dim!

Below is a site that lists apple picking cross the US. This is a wonderful time of year to build family memories.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Geology Get Away

Every several years, I’ve liked to take a get away to a geological wonder I discovered during my undergraduate work. The field trip I took during my Geology class to Devil’s Punchbowl, after 30 years still fascinates me. A county park of the Los Angels County Dept. of Parks and Recreation, the park has short trails within the park showing off the unusual tiled formation of uplifted sand stone formed many centuries ago.

During the fall the paths are surrounded with colorful trees and bushes.  And yes, it is on the San Andreas Fault. The Devil’s Punchbowl Nature Center offers many programs, tours and a telescope program. It’s wonderful day trip for families to enjoy together.

Thursday, June 5, 2014


One summer my husband and I took a sailing class, one of the best ideas we ever had. Now, when we travel, wherever we might be, by any body of water, we go sailing if there are sail boats to rent. There is something about the sense of freedom our feel lolling on the water and suddenly the wind takes up, the sails billow and off you go quietly and peacefully. There is nothing like it!

          Below is a link to a sailing animated greeting I produced. Just click on the link below and be sure your sound is turned on.


Monday, May 5, 2014

My family in Ireland


Last month I had the opportunity of my dreams. I visited Ireland and met my extended family for the first time. Ten years ago I decided to find my father’s family and thanks to familysearch.org and social media, I did.
My father was raised in an orphanage in New York and knew very little about his family. I had a few names and birthdates but that was all. I have used Facebook and e-mail to correspond with them for about a year when I decided it was time to take a trip to the Emerald Isle.
I spent 2-1/2 wonderful weeks meeting family, with lots of hugs and tears on both sides that made for a heart fulfilling experience. The scenery was fantastic, pictures don’t do it justice. I’m grateful I experienced the true Ireland…the real Ireland. People were so very gracious, accommodating and friendly. It wasn’t uncommon for people to stop me on the street, wherever I was and simply chat.
As I left Ireland my heart was full with the new found knowledge of the stories of my family’s lives and history. I’d found my family…forever.
Pictures: Above - Antrim Castle Gardens, Antrim, Northern Ireland

               Below – Sheep posing for a picture in County Kerry, Republic of Ireland

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Robert Frost's home

One of my favorite poets is Robert Frost. So when we went to New England to see the fall colors we stopped by Robert Frost’s home in New Hampshire. It couldn’t have been a more perfect time to see the house and grounds. The leaves were turning colors as we drove to the white house and dark roof stood majestically among the colorful trees. We had the opportunity to walk the grounds and take the Hyla Brook Trail. Along the trail were markers with Frost’s poem describing the beauty of the scene.  There is a children’s garden and in the summer they have lectures and poetry readings on Sundays.
If you have the opportunity to go to New England and happen to be in New Hampshire, be sure to stop by this amazing place and take a tour. You’ll be so glad you did.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Making Kites

For my family, flying a kite was  a wonderful traditon for the month of March for my family. We made and flew kites from March until the early part of summer. As long as the wind blew I was out there with a kite running and watching it soar and dance in the sky. Making a kite meant spring was here, a well anticipated break from the freezing cold weather of winter in New York.

I found a web site that gives extensive directions for making three types of kites:

-Diamond kite—the usueal or traditona kites

-Delta kite—well decorated and colorful V shaped kite

-Paper kite—i.e. using brown paper bags to make a kite.

Paper bag kite: Make 4 reinforced puncture holes at the corners of the bag opening.  Loop 2 lengths of string through holes to support all 4 corners then pull down to one string for a handle.  To finish, decorate bag and add streamers.

This makes wonderful family activity. Just click on the link below:

Have fun!!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Date Festival


Date Festival
February is not February without a trip to Indio, California.  The Date Festival is a yearly jaunt for us. Actually, it's the Riverside County Fair, California  turned into Arabian Nights Theme. This includes camel races, Ostrich races, music by big name artists and Arabian clad workers.

Everything is made of dates: desserts, ice cream, shakes, smoothies, bread, muffins, name it.

It’s a fun day trip for the family but an even better overnighter.

February 14-23, 2014, fair closes at 9pm, so stay overnight and drive to the many date farms with delicious products to purchase and tasting of the many types of date gown in the area.

Totally great family time.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


One of my goals this year is to attend more cultural activities in my community. So a jaunt to the symphony is planned. I created an animation to mark a new adventure for us.  I also chose my all time favorite music, Music Box Dancer. Just click on the link below and be sure your sound is turned on.