Wellsboro, Pennsylvania

This summer at the end of July, we eschewed high-speed turnpike driving and traveled old Route 6 through the northern corridor of Pennsylvania on our return to Ohio after a family celebration. Why? Mainly because many years ago Bob sold Hotpoint appliances to dealers in that territory. On this Sunday afternoon, traveling with our daughter Gretchen and grandson Alec, we had the time, so we decided to do a little reminiscing and show them an area we both enjoy. One of our favorite towns in that area is Wellsboro. In many ways, it is a quintessential small town that has kept its character without being left behind by the times.

Showers were threatening when we pulled into town, but we parked the car and headed to the Wellsboro Diner for coffee and a piece of pie, followed by a short photowalk through the Sunday-afternoon-quiet-streets.
2015_07_26_Ann & Joe_205

If you had been there, we would have invited you to join us for pie. The diner was crowded, but if you wouldn’t mind sitting at the counter, there was plenty of pie, and it was good. Then we wandered through the city park so Gretchen and Alec could see the statue of WYNKEN, BLYNKEN, AND NOD, and along the city sidewalks, where I captured these photos:

On the way out of town, we made one more stop to take a few photos of the Allegheny Reservoir, created years ago when the Kinzu dam was built. I know there is a story to be told about the homes that were flooded and residents who had to move, but we will have to go back another time to get all the details (and some more pictures) before I can write that story. Meanwhile, if you are interested, here is what Wikipedia can tell you.

Allegheny Reservoir
Allegheny Reservoir

Alec and Gretchen at Allegheny Reservoir
Alec and Gretchen at Allegheny Reservoir

Back on the road, we continued our drive west, stopping for a delicious supper at Findley Lake, New York, but that, too, is a story for another time. Thanks for joining us on the trail today. I’ve been a little slow in posting the pictures, but better late than never I guess!

Trail Walker

A mouth-dropping moment

2015_07_25_Ann & Joe_030

We were attending a 50th wedding anniversary party for our brother-and-sister-in-law. Few people knew it was also my husband Bob’s 80th birthday, so when the hostess carried in a birthday cake, it was a big surprise to everyone, including Bob. Mouth-dropping shock was the response of all the guests when Bob stood up and clapped his hands together above the cake, instantaneously extinguishing every candle. Spontaneous applause erupted in the room. As you can see from the picture I captured, the hostess was possibly more surprised than anyone else. Thankfully she didn’t drop the cake.

Carolyn aka Skip

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Mouth Drop.”

A three dog day!

This week I had an opportunity to capture pictures of our springer spaniel, Gulliver, and his two cousins, Cooper and Mabel, so I am departing from my usual photowalking routine to post their pictures.

Having caught a nasty, lingering cold, my excuse for not taking a photowalk, I figured today would be a good opportunity to introduce the pooches and shine a little bloglight on them.

Gulliver originally lived with our daughter and son-in-law, but he has ruled the roost (to mix metaphors) at our house for about 12 years. He’s our second “springer,” and was adopted into our family when he was a very young pup. As a senior dog, he has lost most of his hearing and slowed down quite a bit, but he still enjoys an evening walk in the park and seemingly can tell time because he knows when the daily mail (and dog treat) delivery is due.

Cooper, a Portuguese water dog, joined our daughter and son-in-law’s household when Millie, their first English sheepdog, died. At first, they were in no hurry to get another dog, but pretty quickly realized that they needed a dog around the house. That’s when they “found” Cooper, a delightful, lovable, energetic ball of black fur.

The last of this trio is Mabel, who erroneously thinks she’s a lapdog! Walk into their house and sit down, and Mabel will want to bounce into your lap (and no, she doesn’t ask permission first). She’s a great watchdog though, as the people who come to their door or walk up the sidewalk past their house quickly discover. If she doesn’t know you, she isn’t going to open the door and invite you in.

That’s the canine branch of our family or part of it…at least those that live nearby. All our children and grandchildren have dogs, except for the eldest granddaughter who lives in an apartment with her cats! They all seem to agree with me that a family isn’t complete without a pet (or in some cases two or three) in the house.

Siblings: A special blog post!

We recently had a family gathering where these three siblings were all present.
Because that rarely happens, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to take this family photo.

Laura with her brothers, Joe and Bob

“I don’t believe an accident of birth makes people sisters or brothers. It makes them siblings, gives them mutuality of parentage. Sisterhood and brotherhood is a condition people have to work at.” … Maya Angelou

July afternoon photowalks

2015_07_30_Fairport Harbor beach_015

While our daughter Gretchen and her son Alec were in Ohio, we tried to get out to some of their favorite Ohio sites to visit. The Holden Arboretum and a Lake Erie beach were two of their choices, so we took my camera and headed out to visit both on one sunny afternoon and evening. First thing after lunch we drove out to Fairport Harbor where the beach was crowded with swimmers and boaters of all sorts. There really aren’t many beaches with lake access in our area, even though we only  live a mile from Lake Erie. Fairport is a small beach, but a nice one. They rent out kayaks, give lessons, etc, and things were in full swing on that afternoon.



Holden Arboretum

The Holden Arboretum, in Kirtland, Ohio, is one of the largest arboreta and botanical gardens in the United States, with more than 3,600 acres, including 600 acres devoted to collections and gardens.

Later in the afternoon, we picked up Michael and drove to the Arboretum. Michael just bought a new Canon DSLR and wanted to try it out. I only took a few pictures, but hopefully he had a great time and learned a few things about his new camera. The highlight of our Arboretum visit was a little toad that jumped across the path right in front of me. Michael also got pictures of a snake that conveniently showed up while I was busy watching the toad. I guess you would say it was a successful field trip! No snake pictures on my camera, but here are a few others.


Thanks for joining us on this photowalk.
Carolyn aka Skip

Celebrating 50 years with Ann & Joe

2015_08_15_Ann & Joe_008
Click to enlarge.

Fifty years ago, on August 21, 1965, Ann Hitchen and Joe Lingenfelter joined their hands and their lives as they embarked on an adventure called marriage. Joe was about to begin his second year of seminary and would be ordained as a UCC pastor in 1967. Those first two years Ann worked as a secretary at Franklin and Marshal College.

Fifty years, two sons and 3 parsonages later, they have embarked on a new adventure known as retirement, and on July 25, 2015, they invited their family and friends to join them at the Carriage Corner Restaurant in Mifflinburg, Pennsylvania, for a buffet dinner to celebrate their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

To begin the evening, Joe and Ann welcomed their guests and introduced each one, a daunting task to my way of thinking, but obviously their memories are much better than mine because the introductions were flawless. They were also highly entertaining, as table by table, a room full of strangers learned where, when, and how the lives of each of the others intersected with Joe and Ann’s life. In a very short time, everyone felt warmly welcomed as part of Joe and Ann’s extended family. Strangers no more!

My husband (Joe’s brother, Bob) had suggested that I try to record this event in pictures, giving me an excuse to circulate the room during the evening, introducing myself and asking people to pose for the camera. I can’t say that I reached everyone, but I tried, and every single person I approached was willing to pose. Here are the pictures of those extraordinary people:

Continue reading

An unplanned walk

A walk in the Holden Arboretum wasn’t part of my plan this morning, but when Lisa and I finished our meeting, she suggested a walk in the Arboretum before we went to lunch, and I definitely wasn’t going to say no. We both love the Arboretum, and who could resist an opportunity like that on a beautiful day like this?

Today will probably go down as the first time I’ve gone photowalking without my camera! Nevertheless, I did get a few shots with my phone, and I’m posting them here as a reminder of a good meeting, a great lunch, and a wonderful walk in the butterfly garden. My phone doesn’t take good pictures, but the memories are great, even if the pictures aren’t (Click on a picture if you want to scroll through the gallery).

That’s it for today’s unplanned blog post!
I hope you enjoyed the short walk as much as I did.

Carolyn aka Skip

Brigadoon aka Chautauqua Institute


Brigadoon! That’s what the tour guide called it. Last week we took another trip to Chautauqua Institute in southwest New York state. Although it is only a two hour ride from home, when I walk through the gate to find myself surrounded by lovely victorian homes and tall shade trees with Lake Chautauqua a short walk downhill, I feel as if I have left the ordinary world behind and entered a mystical, magical place…much like Brigadoon.  The nine week summer season at Chautauqua starts in June and lasts only nine weeks…and although it doesn’t vanish like the hauntingly mystical Brigadoon, Chautauqua is an amazing place with a mystique all its own. On Friday and Saturday we were immersed in that mystique, and I loved every minute of it. I don’t have time (nor energy) for a long post today, so this will be a sampler of some of the sights and sounds of Chautauqua. The sounds, the symphony rehearsing for an evening concert and a bagpiper practicing on the green, you will have to imagine, but I hope you enjoy this little taste of “Brigadoon.”

Was I ever that young?

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Snapshot Stories.”

The prompt instructed me to find a photo album and write a post about the first picture of myself that I found in the album. I don’t know if it is cheating or not, but, after looking through some old albums, I amended the prompt to read, “…find the oldest picture of yourself and write a post about it.” This (unretouched) photo,  the oldest picture I could find of myself, sent me wandering down memory lane. Most of my photowalks are recent walks on the trails in my favorite parks, but if, for a change, you want to wander with me off the beaten path, read on.


The back story:

During my growing-up-years, my father was the family photographer, and this picture, since digitized, was found in one of his albums. I was in high school when this was taken, and at that time, the ukulele was enjoying a lot of popularity in the U.S.  I think it may have been Arthur Godfrey (anyone remember him?) who was responsible for its popularity. Anyway, I was a “ukulele wannabe.” I probably learned three or four chords before I realized I was never going to make it to stardom on The Arthur Godfrey Show, but this photo of me, snapped in the corner of my teenaged bedroom, is proof that I was once that young, actually owned a ukulele, and had aspirations of musical fame and fortune.

Arthur Godfrey is long gone, so are my parents, and I have no idea what happened to the ukulele after I left home, but just looking at this old photo brings back memories of the much younger person I once was and gives me a warm-fuzzy-happy-feeling.  I have a smile on my face as I write this. I am so glad Daddy saved this photo. It must have meant something to him too, and I wish I could share it with him today.

Thanks for looking at this “way-off-the-trail” blog post. Maybe you could find an old picture of yourself and take a photowalk down memory lane.

Carolyn aka Skip

Graduation Day 2015

Half the senior class…Emmy is somewhere in that sea of blue.

Today, graduation day for the class of 2015, was a big day for our granddaughter Emmy, Following the main event of the day, the graduation ceremony, Alison and Mike hosted a terrific brunch for Emmy and her guests at Pier W, a restaurant overlooking Lake Erie with a great view of downtown Cleveland.

Members of the Board of Education took turns presenting each student with his/her diploma. When it was time for Em to receive hers, it was handed to her, along with a hug, by a former neighbor and long time friend of the family who serves on the Board of Education. That made a significant moment even more memorable. Although we were sitting way up in the upper reaches of the State Theater where the graduation was held, I managed to grab a couple of quick shots of Emmy receiving her diploma:

Cap, gown, and diploma in hand


Following the ceremony, it was time for brunch and picture-taking on the patio overlooking Lake Erie (Click on a picture to scroll through the gallery).

Congratulations, Emmy. After a summer of teaching swimming lessons, you are off to college, and with two kids in college, Mom and Dad are off to work!! The years will fly by quickly. I can tell you that from personal experience. Work hard; learn a lot; make good friends; remember the values you live by; and create special memories that you will always treasure.

Love you forever,