Thursday, July 29, 2010

Antique-Aholics Anonymous

Hi my name is Big Al and I'm an Antique-Aholic.

Like so many other addictions, mine started in College. I would sneak out of my dorm room early on Saturday mornings and head to auctions. At one point, I convinced a professor to provide me with money for my habit and found myself buying one too many dinnerware sets for an upcoming play.

More than ten years later, I'm noticing that I still have an addiction.I frequently find myself having conversations that center around my problem and I brag about what I find and how little it cost me. Bragging is not a behavioral quality to be proud about.

$1 wicker chair!

I regularly am in search of "good stuff" upon awakening and it has interfered with my work schedule. Having to work on the weekend gets in the way of 9 am yard sales. No early birds? Whatever, that phrase doesn't exist in my world of antique dependence.

Flower Frogs and Flower Pins

I have had periods of time when I can't remember what I did. Recently, I blacked out at an auction and lost out on a ladies rocker that I sat hours waiting for. I became obsessed with finding another one and couldn't think about anything else until I finally found one for a steal at a flea market one month later.

I sometimes have family members or close friends go with me so I can experience a rush when they score.

Yes, I did get excited over my husband ending his week long search for a punch clock.

Recently, I went so far as to fulfill another addicts wish and sent a package all the way to Atlanta, Georgia!

Experts say you should try to give something up and not experience physical or emotional distress for 6 weeks. I can't even imagine the shakes that might happen if I were to try.

Labor Day is only a month away and my opportunities will soon be limited to Etsy and Ebay and this brings a great amount of anxiety to me. Can I stay off the wagon a little bit longer? Speaking of wagons, check out what I did with the Radio Flyer I got for free at the Town Dump.

The weekend is right around the corner and I have to be honest, I'm really jonesing for my next fix. It helps that I don't have any cash in my wallet right now, but the yard sale sign on our corner is taunting me.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Liquids & Solids

If you haven't been to Liquids & Solids at the Handlebar, you need to drop everything and go because this gastro pub is to die for. They've only been open for a month, but it seems like T & K are already in their groove. Their Liquids Menu offers a great selection of beer that you normally can't get in our neck of the woods along with wine, and interesting cocktails.

Looking at the Solids Menu and talking to friends at the table next to us, we knew there was no way we could go wrong with our picks. We decided on sharing three smalls and because it was all so amazing, Drew and I rotated the plates every few bites. My usual descriptions are missing because he's a fast eater, I had to keep up. There was no way I was going to miss out on my fair share of all the foodie goodness.

warmed panzanella, arugula, pesto, and honey horseradish vinaigrette

sweet and spicy rice noodle salad, pea shoots, bean sprouts, peanuts, dried mango, cilantro with crispy tofu.

grilled Boston blue fish, lemon pudding, cornbread french toast, crispy onions.

It was really hard to eat this food.

Um, NOT!

Oh, and how could I forget the Sweet?

lavender creme brulee and preserved lemon

It was such a treat for us to go out for dinner and we were more than satisfied when we left. However, last night I dreamt about going back for the burger I saw come out with cheese curds, eating poutine and washing it all down with mint chocolate pie. Swoon.

Are you salivating yet? Give them a try, you won't be sorry.

Liquids and Solids is open Tuesday - Sunday from 4 - 11 pm. They are located just down the street from the train station across from Lamb Lumber.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

For Sale: Water Tube

After purchasing three tubes from the Mountaineer less than 24 hours ago, I have discovered that tubing down the river is not for me.

Our friend Heather from Colorado was visiting and we thought it would be fun to float down the river to our house. We started our journey from the parking area on 9N between Upper Jay and Jay. Everything started off smoothly and I was loving life.

A little more than half a mile later down stream, I could tell my body wasn't liking the adventure. I had visions of myself grabbing onto the bridge foundation and holding on for dear life like Anne of Green Gables did before Gilbert rescued her.

No, the current wasn't strong and I was not in danger of drowning. This lazy river tubing adventure was carrying us at a rate of less than one mile an hour. You see, my body is fragile and I am prone to motion sickness. I have gotten sick while flat water kayaking on Mirror Lake. I thought I would be fine just floating down the river not exerting myself. However, I am a freak of nature.

Drew and Heather were perfectly happy drifting further and further down the river away from me.

Something happened 1 1/2 miles down. I vomited. Yes, that's right, I puked. It was a technicolor yawn. I tossed my cookies. Upchucked. Barfed. Threw up. Hurled. This projectile ralph happened in my beloved river.

I was still only about half way to our house and had no choice but to float and walk along the river banks while my husband and friend laughed at me during other bouts of vomiting. This unfortunately is something Drew has gotten used to over the years with me.

Finally we rounded the final river bend and came to the parking area less than a mile walk to our house. I exited the river and waved down a woman that I've seen often while running in the morning to give me a ride to the Covered Bridge to meet them.

Drew and Heather completed the three mile river journey. Drew ended it with a grand finale of sliding down the rapids just before the bridge. He obviously had no problems with his stomach.

So, if anyone else would like to give it a try, I know of one River Rat tube that won't be used anytime soon.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Life Size Dollhouse

The house on the corner of 86 and 9N in Jay has seen better days.

There is a creek that runs through the base of the house and I don't think it did much to help it structurally over the years.

Slowly, the house has been falling down room by room and has become a life size dollhouse. Everyday I drive by and am reminded of my childhood because oddly, the cross section resembles the layout of the rooms in the dollhouse my father built for my sister.

Being the younger sister meant that her toys got passed on to me when she moved onto teenage actvities. That dollhouse was one of my favorite playtime activities. I remember spending hours removing all the furniture from the rooms and redecorating.

When I opened the doors and roof to the dollhouse yesterday, furniture was tossed around from it being moved around the basement. Without even thinking, I moved the items into the rooms the same way I did 25 years ago.

Sometimes the bird cage and sewing machine would be placed on opposite sides of the red house, but most of the time they were grouped together. I'm not really sure what made me think that sewing and song birds went together at the age of six, but what kind of doll wouldn't want to sew in the company of a bird?

Looking back, it may have been what my sister had done all along and I've always admired her decorating skills. I can't imagine matching the gold on the sewing machine with the bird cage all by myself, but these are things I find myself doing as an adult.

The rocking chair and side table were placed in the green stairwell room. Unfortunately, due to where my father is storing the dollhouse, I couldn't get to the rooms on the other side of the house to find the miniature green vase that is supposed to go on the table.

From this stairwell room, I peeked into the master bedroom and noticed that the father was lying in bed with a blonde while the mother was down in the orange kitchen putting salad on the table! Looks like the plastic people have been up to no good.

I wonder if a similar scandal happened at the life size dollhouse on the corner because someone got a little angry and spray painted "Dick" in the bottom right room.

People need to keep in mind that when you live in a dollhouse, your whole life is exposed and people might start making up stories about you.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Buttons Buttons

Facing the Jay Village Green is one of my favorite houses. If you've been to the Green, you know the house. It's the one with the awesome wrap-around porch, purple and green trim and the Cottage garden that comes up to the sidewalk. This is the home of Buttons Buttons.

Buttons Buttons is a vintage textile business. Barbara works with a huge collection of vintage fabric and antique buttons in her studio on John Fountain Road.

She takes old textiles and turns them into one of a kind pillows that almost look too pretty to lay your head on.

If you want something a little bit more rugged, you should check out her collection of Porch and Adirondack pillows.

I think Buttons Buttons hours might be a hit or miss type thing, but she also has a booth at Red Barn Antiques in Upper Jay which is open Wednesday - Sunday. It was here I first saw her work and fell in love with these two little lampshades she created.

If you are looking for a special gift for someone (hint, hint) or just need a little inspiration, check out Buttons Buttons in Ye Olde hamlet of Jay.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

90 Degree What?!

What does one do when family comes to town during a heat wave?

1. Take turns hugging the icy North Pole.

2. Drive 1000 feet from the house in an air conditioned vehicle to the famous swimming hole and submerse your body into the refreshing Au Sable River.

3. Decide you are not leaving "Heaven on Earth" anytime soon and finally turn into a swimmer after 32 years.

4. Don't cook, go to A&W for dinner and drink Root Beer Floats.

5. Repeat step 3, walk down to the river for a quick dip before bed and wait for the sun to go down.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Patriotic Gargoyles

Have a safe and happy fourth of July from the Gargoyles!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Roaring Brook Fireworks

Instead of watching the fireworks from behind our house in Jay tonight, we hiked to the top of Roaring Brook Falls to watch them over the Ausable Club.

We arrived before sunset and found our spot on the rocks. Lori, Drew, and I couldn't get over what a perfect summer night it was and quietly took in the beauty around us. We were all relaxing until some loud obnoxious hikers from New Jersey showed up and got right in front of us and ruined our wilderness experience!

Just kidding, we love you Muffin even if you are from NJ! :)

There are moments every day when I realize how lucky I am to live here. Tonight was no exception. Being able to pick up my husband and friend after work and take a short hike to watch fireworks in the mountains is definitely not something I take for granted.

Happy Fourth of July from the top of Roaring Brook Falls!

BBQ Festival

The I Love BBQ Festival has returned to Lake Placid this weekend.

Sadly, I was not asked to return as the ILBBQF Mascot. Do you think it's because I'm not piggly enough?

Perhaps it's because I tend to try out only one rib in the Buck a Rib Contest. Maybe I need to start bulking up for next year's festival and eat more homemade potato chip nacho towers and pulled pork sandwiches.