After a beautiful week of Indian Summer – like weather in the 70s, we’re now settling into the need for coats, heavy blankets, and car butt warmers! It is becoming chillingly apparent that winter is right around the corner! As I sit here writing this, I’m watching strong winds blow the last of the autumn leaves away and snow clouds forming in the sky. Say it isn’t so……..but, indeed, it is!
I’m also very concerned about the rapid surge of Covid cases across the country, including in our area. How can we think about the possibility of more shut downs and more loss of lives just as we’re going into the winter months and the holiday season? It deeply saddens me.
But……I can, and will, focus on more positive things in life……my family, friends, faith, and blessings…….and capturing those Daily Photos! LOL Here is the next set from the November List:
A CORNER IN MY HOME
THIS MAKES ME HAPPY
SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT
THE WEATHER TODAY
This was November 14th……
Stay safe……remember to stay diligent – wash your hands often, use hand sanitizer, wear a mask, keep social distances of at least 6 feet……it’s not over, yet, but we can get it under control!
Till next time…….keep smiling!
I did a Facebook photo challenge called “Life Is Good” over the past 10 days. All the photos were selected from photos I have taken over the years and were not taken fresh on each day.
This is what the challenge was:
“Life is good. This is day X of “My Life is Good” challenge. I will post 10 pictures that bring me joy. (no explanation), 10 days, 10 pictures, and I will nominate 10 people. Today I nominate: X”
And, here are the photos I used:
Let’s just jump right in and get started with November’s Daily Photos……It’s Sunday morning and I need to get ready for church…….hehehe!!!
IN THE MIDDLE
SOMETHING I DO EVERYDAY
A FAVORITE WORD
See ya on the flip side……
October 2020 will soon be in the history books….tonight is Halloween……tomorrow November begins…..and we set our clocks back tonight to end DST and begin the dark evenings……Covid is on the rise, again…….election day is just 3 days away!!! WOW — that’s a lot to put on the shoulders of one little day!
So, let’s just go ahead and see what I did for Daily Photos over the last week or so:
AN EMPTY TABLE
AN ARROW POINTING UP
A SPIDER WEB
Pole Dancing Queen!!! LOL
A WONDERFUL SURPRISE
Not one, but two Downy Woodpeckers at the Bird Buffet!!!
See you in November…..but, before I go, here is November’s List of Daily Photo Topics:
Hello, my name is Kim and my sleep number is 45 and I have a bed that hugs me…..so there!!! And, I LOVE IT!!!
Let’s go back a bit……I haven’t had the best luck with new mattresses over the last few years! When I moved into my current home nine years ago, I bought a well-known brand mattress – at a considerable price! In less than two years, it felt lumpy and saggy and resulted in extremely uncomfortable nights! So, I bought another mattress – a much better one that gave me much more pleasurable sleep experiences. But – mattresses just aren’t made like they used to be – you can’t flip them to help them last longer (yes, you can turn them end-to-end, but that just isn’t enough) – you just don’t get the long life out of them like you used to…..but, so goes it with just about everything, these days! Also, as I get older, my arthritis and asthma make it a challenge for any mattress to be comfortable over a 7-8 hour night’s sleep! As a result, my sleep has suffered and I do a lot of tossing and turning and waking up achy, causing me to be tired during the day, so I nap, which makes it harder to sleep at night……and so goes the vicious cycle!!!
So, I started wondering if an adjustable bed might be a good choice for me – one where I can elevate the head and/or feet to help me breathe easier, reduce leg cramps, and keep the pressure off my joints! But, I found that, typically, adjustable beds have memory foam mattresses……I know a lot of people love memory foam mattresses, but I DO NOT!!! Remember that bad mattress I mentioned earlier – the one that lasted less than two years? Well, to help make it last longer, I got a memory foam topper for it – a good one – thick and dense and firm, but still contoured nicely to my body! I hated it worse than the lumpy mattress – I struggled to turn over and get out of it……I gave it several months to “get used to it” and finally put it out to the road! I found out after that you either love or hate memory foam……I guess I’m in the latter group – and, no, I don’t like memory foam pillows, either!!! 🙂 I found out that some regular mattresses can go on adjustable beds, but they don’t always flex the way they really should and I figured I’d probably end up with a crappy mattress on an expensive adjustable frame……so, I had given up on that idea! And, I knew from past experience, I didn’t want to go down the water bed path at all……I’ve had the old kinds and the newer kinds and…..no…..not something I wanted to revisit!
So, I was telling my brother of my plight……how I really needed to find a way to get a decent night’s sleep consistently! He told me, in no uncertain terms, that a Sleep Number Bed would be my solution! I came back with the whole story about hating memory foam……he said, it isn’t memory foam! He had me try out their bed – one they had for 12+ years and was still super happy with! I had to admit, it felt good and I liked the idea of being able to adjust the density as my needs changed and the adjustable base part! So, my research began……I kept going back and forth about spending the money – they aren’t cheap! But, reminded myself that I spent more than the cost I was seeing on the total cost of two mattresses in less than 10 years, so if it lasts me at least that long, I’d be no worse off than I was cost-wise! So, I decided – after several months of deliberation – to get one!
My brother got a “friends and family” discount card at the first of the year and gave it to me. I still hemmed and hawed about it a couple of months until I was at risk of the discount expiring and the stores having to close up for Covid! It was now or never…….so I went to the store in the Galleria Mall in Buffalo – the one where my brother got his! It was just a couple days before the malls were ordered to close…..but, most of the stores inside were already closed – it was like a ghost mall……
The salesman introduced himself and told me his sleep number…..I thought that was cutesy, but also a bit “cult-ish” – LOL – since whenever I’ve talked to a representative on the phone or in the store, they introduce themselves that way…..and my brother and his wife also proudly told me their sleep numbers! I told him I tried my brother’s bed and wanted to look into one like his. He still put me through the whole sales shpeel to “find my sleep number” and try all the different mattresses available. Of course, I ended up right where I thought I needed to be with the one like my brother’s! LOL – but, it was actually a good process to go through to be sure and very educational on how different each one was! I put it on order, got my discount (well worth not missing out on), and they gave me a delivery date of two weeks! SCORE!!!
Then……COVID really took hold…….and they were not allowed to do any in-home deliveries and set-ups!!!! UGH!!! I had a great bed that was paid for, but I couldn’t get! But – I understood and, truth be told, assumed would happen when we made the set-up appointment. So, I waited…….two months later, they were allowed to do deliveries and set-ups, again and I had a new appointment – that I was cautiously optimistic would actually happen and not get canceled!
The day came and I was THRILLED!!!
They set up my new bed and explained all the features and taught me how to do everything……and I had the first best night’s sleep I’d had in a very long time!!!
So, here’s the thing……yes, the adjustable base is a major plus – I set it at “snore” while I sleep and it really is just enough of an elevation of my head to help my breathing!!! I also elevate the feet just a little bit to help circulation and haven’t had any leg cramps in a while! It is also great to elevate the head and feet enough for comfortable reading and watching TV in bed! Cool! But……that isn’t the best part — yes, the adjustable base is a great feature and the adjustable density (sleep number – firmness of the mattress) is amazing – I have my normal sleep number – 45, but if I have a bad arthritis flare up or my back is in bad shape, I adjust it up or down to where it is more comfortable for each specific situation and that really does help a LOT……but, the true best part, in my never to be humble opinion, is the “responsive air”…….that’s what they call it…….I call it my “gentle hug”!!!!
Yes, I said my bed hugs me……and when it does, I gently pat the mattress and say “thanks for the hug” and settle in to comfortable bliss! So – what exactly is “responsive air” (hug)? Well, I turn it on using the app on my phone just before I start to get into my jammies and get ready to go to sleep. It will then adjust itself to a consistent air pressure across the mattress…….then, when I get in and within a few seconds after I settle into the position I want to lay in, it senses my pressure points and adjusts the air to conform to my body……not, like sinking into a memory foam mattress……but, like a gentle “hug” around my body with less pressure on joints like hips and shoulders and knees and more pressure on lower back, etc…….it is amazing!!!! And….it doesn’t end, there……..about once an hour throughout the night, it reassesses my pressure points and if it senses that I have moved and now may not be as comfortable, it readjusts to conform to my new position!!! No – it isn’t disruptive to my sleep – I thought it might be – but it isn’t – I only realize it is happening if I happen to be awake when it does it’s thing…….otherwise, it quietly and subtly adjusts to me to keep me comfortable throughout the night……little hugs whenever I need them!!! How cool is that????
And, another cool feature is the under bed light — if I get up in the middle of the night, the light comes on under the bed and lights up the floor in the room – it stays on until I get back into bed and shuts itself off (or it shuts off after a certain amount of time passes and it looks like I’m not coming back to bed). Yeah, I know…….but, it’s the little things in life that make me smile and go all giddy!!! 🙂
So……needless to say, so far, I am very happy with my new Sleep Number Bed…….I have now had it for almost five months and can’t imagine how I slept without it! My sleep patterns have greatly improved and I don’t wake up all achy, anymore…..no stiff neck or sore joints……no waking myself up snoring…..much less tossing and turning before falling asleep……much less getting up multiple times throughout the night…..much less instances of bouts with insomnia over multiple days!!!
Of course, it doesn’t solve my sleep problems caused by too long of naps during the day or not avoiding caffeine after 6:00 pm or drinking too much after dinner – those can still give me a night here and there of insomnia and are not the fault of the bed – but, when I control those things, the rest is easy – the comfort part is all taken care of – no more insomnia caused by discomfort! Even when I had a long bout with a serious back problem over the last couple of months, the pain crippled me throughout the day, but at night and when I first got out of bed, it was not an issue at all – in fact, I found that if I was in extreme pain, I could go lie down and the responsive air and adjustable pressure helped relieve the pain enough to go on with my day after a little bit!
The app on my phone also tells me a lot about my night – average breaths per minute, heart beats per minute, how many hours of restful sleep vs restless sleep, how many times (if any) I get out of bed, how long it took me to fall asleep……and I can use that info to adjust the factors I can control, if needed, to improve that!
Even Megan and her Lamb Chop agree that it is a pretty darned good bed……..LOL (and, you can see the slight elevation of the head for the “snore” position – hardly noticeable, but effective)
I know I sound like a broken record, lately, but DANG – I can not believe October is almost over……..don’t blink or you’ll miss Thanksgiving and be into Christmas and miss everything in between!!! WOW!!! I remember thinking how stupid it sounded when people would say “time flies so much faster when you get older”…..now, I totally understand what they meant! Although – this year, I’m kinda glad time is flying by – sure would be a bummer to get stuck in 2020 creeping by at a snail’s pace! hahahaha
So, let’s get on with this week’s Daily Photos:
A CLOSED SIGN
SOMETHING HIDDEN – 2
A FLOCK OF BIRDS
Catch ya later…….
The fall colors are really popping all over Orleans County! So happy to see the trees a-blaze with color as I drive around the countryside.
Here is my next set of Daily Photos……enjoy!
AN UNMADE BED
A BOOK COVER
THE TALLEST BUILDING
The top of this tower sitting up on the highest hill in Mount Albion Cemetery is the tallest point in Orleans County!
That’s all for now…….
*** WOO HOO ***
My Blog just reached 100,000+ visitors (just since it has been on WordPress – it was on Blogger before that, but those visitors are not included in this #)!!!
In the grand scheme of BLOGs, that may sound really low – especially since it has just recently turned 12 YEARS OLD!!! BUT…….it is a small personal blog that is only advertised when I post a link on Facebook (and more recently since I’ve been linking posts to my travel articles on The Orleans Hub once or twice a month)……it was only just for my own personal enjoyment for a long time!
Sooooooo – this is very exciting and really something special for me!!!
THANK YOU to everyone who has visited and enjoyed my ramblings and photos I’ve posted over the years!!!
October — my favorite month!!! Lots of mixed feelings about it being October…….yes, it is my favorite month……but, sad that it is the start of the fourth quarter of the year…..then, again, it IS 2020 and I think everyone is about ready for this year to end……and, then, there is the whole thing about being another year older……..oh well, what the hell…..it’s OCTOBER!!!
Here is the October Daily Photo List:
And, here are my first set of October Daily Photos:
FOR SALE SIGN
WHAT’S IN MY YOUR POCKET
Till next time……..
I’ve been itching for a get-away……anywhere…..just to go on an adventure…..this year has been driving me nuts! But, with the Covid risks, I was not about to get on an airplane or bus or train to go anywhere and then there is the whole quarantine requirements if I were to travel to a state that is on the list of states that have to quarantine for 14 days after returning. So, I finally decided to check out going on a short get-away within New York State. I looked at the Catskills and didn’t see anything in particular that interested me. So, I looked at the Adirondacks and set my sights on Lake Placid!
Mom used to take us to the Adirondacks when we were little. We’d stay in cheap roadside motels and go to all the wonderful attractions in the area – Santa’s Workshop at the North Pole, Land of Make Believe, Frontier Town, Land of 1000 Animals, and others that I can’t think of their names! We’d drive to the top of Whiteface Mountain and just have the best time! What great memories! But, I’ve never actually stayed right in Lake Placid. So, Lake Placid it was……and off I went! I drove up on Monday, September 21st, spent three full days, and drove back on Friday, September 25th. Perfect!!!
The first sign that I’d made the right decision was when I turned the radio on about 1/2 hour into my 6 1/2 hour drive and Willie Nelson’s “On The Road Again” came on…..woo hoo……that set the tone for the entire drive!
The drive up went fast……I sang the whole way, alternating between Classic Rock and Classic Country and the time just flew! I was about 1 1/2 hours away from my destination before I realized I hadn’t stopped or got out to stretch even once! So, about Cranberry Lake, I pulled over at a parking area and got out to walk around the car a few times and stretch my legs and got back in and went the rest of the way.
My next clue that I made the right decision about the trip and the hotel I chose was that they put me in room # 333…….like they just knew I had a “thing” about the number three…..PERFECT!!!
I looked at several places to stay while in Lake Placid and settled on Mirror Lake Inn Resort and Spa overlooking Mirror Lake. My room was huge and had a terrace which was more like a sun room off the main part of the room with ceiling to floor windows and sliding glass doors with views of the lake and the mountains……simply stunning! I would not have been one bit bored or disappointed if I had to stay right there and do nothing else the entire time I was there! WOW!!! I did spend quite a bit of time enjoying my view, but I also got out and did some other things, as well.
It was a beautiful inn and location – right in the heart of downtown Lake Placid!
The room was amazing and so comfortable! I slept like a baby and adored my terrace and view!
Views from my terrace……I could get used to seeing this at all hours of the day and night……I even left the drapes open while I slept and when I woke up, this was the first thing I saw from my pillow! So awesome!!!
It was a tad frustrating that some of the things I wanted to do were either not open or not fully operational and some of the restaurants were closed or take out only and those that were open for dine-in service weren’t accepting reservations, so some were really hard to get in when I wanted to – all due to Covid restrictions. But, it actually turned out perfect……it forced me to do what my bottom line goal was….to just relax and enjoy the beauty of the Adirondack Mountains!!!
On my first day, I went to Santa’s Workshop for “old time’s sake”! It is the only one of the old attractions my family went to year after year that is still there – the others have all closed down some years ago. The workshop, itself, was not open, but I got to see the place and go in the gift shop. It looks exactly the same as I remember it! I told the lady that my Mom brought me here when I was a child and she said that so many people come through there and say exactly that and it made her smile! I bought myself a t-shirt, some Christmas ornaments, and a beautiful angel for my collection.
I drove around a little for most of the morning and early afternoon, just looking around the area and checking out the scenery. I loved seeing all the river and creek beds with clear, cool water flowing over rocks and ledges.
In the afternoon, I took a boat cruise on Lake Placid. I learned a lot about the area and got to enjoy the beautiful autumn colors. It was just starting to reach peak leaf color – I watched the colors explode over the course of the few days I was there – they predicted they would reach peak by the end of the week and I’ll bet it did cause it was amazing!!!
The next day, I took the Essex Ferry into Vermont for the day. I didn’t have anything specific in mind to do – just whatever caught my eye – except I really wanted to visit the Ben & Jerry’s factory in Waterbury, VT. Just the thought of going into Vermont made me feel like a rebel……I know – we can go wherever we want and I was only going be there a few hours, so quarantine rules didn’t apply, and Vermont isn’t on “the list”, anyway….BUT…..leaving NY for the first time since January still made me feel like a rebel!!! hehehe
The drive from Lake Placid to Essex was really beautiful, too!
I’ve been on car ferries before, but never as the driver. I was a little nervous about driving onto the ferry, but it was a piece of cake and I really enjoyed the almost 30 minute ride across Lake Champlain – it was beautiful and a perfect day for it – sunny and 70 degrees!
The first thing that caught my eye on the Vermont side of Lake Champlain was the Vermont Teddy Bear Company! When I saw the sign, I knew it was somewhere I needed to check out! So, I stopped in and boy, was I glad I did! I could have taken a factory tour, but decided to just enjoy the gift shop to save time.
What a joy it was to see all those wonderful hand made teddy bears……just amazing!!! I bought myself one (duh – did you really think I’d leave without one???) and headed on my way!
Next up was Ben & Jerry’s……..I was disappointed they weren’t doing tours because of Covid, but I treated myself to a dish of Cherry Garcia and took some photos, and was just so very happy to be there! I’ll make the trip again sometime when I can do the tour.
There were a couple other things that caught my eye, but they weren’t open, so I just spent some time driving around Burlington and Shelbourne and headed back to the ferry to cross Lake Champlain one more time before going back to the inn and dinner!
On the way to the ferry, I spotted this cool clock on the side of an antique shop that also advertised pizza by the slice……didn’t go in, but had to stop to get a photo of the perfect representation of the phrase “time flies”!
On the ride back across Lake Champlain, this was my view out my passenger side window! Hahahaha!!!
My last day was pretty laid back……I just relaxed and explored around downtown Lake Placid and checked out some of the shops!
The first thing I saw was also my one and only “awe…..a critter” moment! I looked out my terrace door to see an adorable fox checking out the pool area below my room! He hung out there looking around for quite a while and I just stood there watching him! 🙂
OK, so those of you who follow my adventure posts are wondering where the FOOD pics are!!! Well, I deliberately waited till almost the end to add them……keeping the suspense going! hehehe
The food was amazing everywhere I went! Like I said earlier, a lot of the restaurants were either closed or take out only…….also, finding a parking spot in downtown Lake Placid was dang near impossible! But, I did manage to eat at a few really great places. The Mirror Lake Inn had two restaurants – an upscale restaurant – The View – and a more casual one – The Cottage! I ate at The Cottage my first night and had the best turkey sandwich – it was huge – I only ate 1/2 of it, it was so big! It was piled high with thick slices of turkey, apple slices, and a cranberry aioli……so good! I had breakfast delivered to my room twice so I could sit and eat with that amazing view from my terrace. I also had breakfast at the Dancing Bears and the Downtown Diner. I had dinner at the Dancing Bears twice — I had an awesome burger the first time and a perfect steak the second time! I wanted to eat at Smoke Signals – a BBQ place, but getting in there proved to be impossible – even getting a take out plate to take back to my room wasn’t in the cards. But, on my last day, I discovered the Pickled Pig and had the best beef brisket sandwich I’ve EVER had!!! So, here are the food pics I remembered to take before the food was all gone!!!
And, for my final pictures – here are the souvenirs I bought myself from Santa’s Workshop, the Vermont Teddy Bear Company, and Ben & Jerry’s:
It was the perfect get-away —- the weather was great —- the autumn colors were incredible —- it was a great mix of relaxation and exploration —- and I really enjoyed every minute of it! I even read an entire book while I was there!
And……..I capped the trip off with an 80 minute aromatherapy massage at the spa in the Mirror Lake Inn the last night of my stay…….OMG…….perfection!!!
One thing I didn’t do that I thought I wanted to do was drive up Whiteface Mountain! I kept going back and forth about it……I wanted to, but you couldn’t use the elevator to the summit and the lifts weren’t operating and you couldn’t go inside the castle at the parking level……also, I kept hearing how rough it is on your car and brakes……but, when it came right down to it, I realized I didn’t really want to go, after all — I kept going back to all the things that made me question my decision to go – even though I knew they all weren’t really an issue at all – and just realized it was because I really didn’t want to go! So, I didn’t! 🙂
And, I must take a moment to say how impressed I was with all the Covid precautions……everywhere I looked someone was sanitizing something…….restaurants not only cleaned the tables, but they also sprayed and cleaned every chair at the table (even if not used) and anything within reach of the table……people were very cooperative about wearing masks – even walking down the streets (if someone was walking outside with no one near them, they may have had their mask under their chin, but pulled it up as soon as they saw someone approaching them) and no one complained or harassed wait staff or clerks anywhere about it……and there was hand sanitizer available EVERYWHERE!!! It was really impressive and made me feel comfortable about being there! Even my room — it had a tag sealing the door saying it had been sanitized when I arrived and no one entered my room while I was there – I was told ahead of time there would be no daily in-room service, but if I needed anything to call and ask for it – I was totally fine with that – I didn’t need it and it made me feel better that no one was in there touching surfaces while I was out……and, it was nice to be able to return to the room any time during the day without worrying about interrupting the cleaning staff. VERY NICE!!!
The drive back wasn’t as easy as the drive up — I struggled a bit and had to stop at parking areas a few times to refresh myself, but it was uneventful and I got home in plenty of time to pick up Megan from her little vacation at the kennel, so all was good!
All in all……a great decision!!! I am so glad I went!!! It worked out so nicely that I would not hesitate to do another in-state get-away if I get the adventure itch again before all the Covid restrictions are lifted!