"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

29 May 2015

End of May Faves

How is it possible that it's the end of May?

I've been busy this last week,  but life is starting to wind down now that the end of the school year is approaching.  Only 4 more weeks of school!  My baby will be in 11th grade come September and my oldest is looking for a job in one of her 2 fields of study.  Please do keep her in prayer as she begins to send out resumes and her portfolio.  Along with all of the busyness of this past week, I am able to find FIVE FAVES....blessings that God gave me........so I'm linking up with Susanne to share them.  How about joining in?  


  • HIKING! On Saturday, Dave and I left the house around 8 a.m. and headed south to the Catskills.  After just over an hour of driving southeast, we arrived at Hunter Mt.  There are 4 different trails to get to the summit.  We chose to go to the ski center, take the ski lift up the first mile, hop off and proceed on foot via Colonial's Chair trail (1.1 miles) to Spruceton Trail for another mile to the fire-tower which is the highest fire-tower (90 ft!!) in NYS!  I even climbed the tower!!  What fun it was!  Hunter is the 2nd highest peak in the Catskills and is 4,040 feet! It was Dave's first "high peak" to climb.  He did really well.  We chose the easier approach because it was his first hike after the heart attack that he had (Sept 9, 2014).  And I just wanted to get the photo  taken of me by the fire tower because........I'm now done with all 5 Catskills Fire-towers!!!  I am almost done with the challenge!!!!  Only 5 more mountains to go and they must be done in the Adirondacks. So far, I have  climbed 13 mountains in the ADKS with fire towers (I must do a total of 18 out of the 23) and all 5 in the Catskills.  I've been working on this challenge since 2004. (I have also kept track of all the mountains and other trails I've hiked since getting married in 1990 but that's for another post!) I think I'm going to finish it by the end of the summer!!   That's my goal, anyways!  I thank God for the beautiful (although very cold!) day we had.  It was only 42 degrees when we first started hiking!  Thank God the ski center shop was open so I could buy a fleece headband.  My backpack was already set up for warmer weather. We did NOT expect it to be that cold in the Catskills.  Dave and I really needed this day to ourselves, too, to just have fun.  It had been a long time since we did something, just the two of us, for fun.  I thank God for the time we had.

Hunter Mt.
23 May 2015

The view of the Catskills and way in the back, the mountains of MA (the Berkshires)
as seen from the top of the fire tower on Hunter Mt.

Dave on the Colonial's Chair Trail

taking a rest at the Rip Van Winkle Sculpture
at the end of the 2nd mile down Hunter Mt

  • FLOWERS!  This year, due to being away the weekend after Mother's Day, I didn't get my flowers in the pots for the deck and porch until this past week.  Oh my goodness.  I spent most of Sunday afternoon buying and potting these flowers.  I LOVE them and I decided I am not going overboard this year. We have 2 different week- long vacations planned for the upcoming summer, and so I need to keep things simple.  I love the petunias and day lilies. I also have some marigolds in a long container on the deck railing near the eating area, and a little ivy of some sort in the reading corner.  A pot of marigolds sits under our maple tree, too out by the swing, and on the front stoop we have a 3rd pot of marigolds, plus a pot of light purple flowers.  I have no idea what they are...they looked gorgeous in the store so I bought them. Now we just need to re-paint the deck..  We will get to that another weekend!
New Deck flowers

  • SWING!  Dave and Courtney put up my Mother's Day gift on Sunday after church while I worked on the flowers.  I LOVE it.  It is so nice to sit on in the early mornings (we get the morning sun in the backyard so it isn't too hot which is nice) and do my devotional with a cup of coffee.  And I love sitting in it after dinner with a cold drink and a book.  This swing will definitely get a lot of use this summer!  Huge thanks to my hubby for this awesome gift! (the swing looks a little more green, like the maple leaves, in real life...not sure why this photo didn't come out with better color!) 

My Mother's Day gift!!
  • DECK TIME!  Oh how we have missed  our deck!  The winter was so long and cold!  And the deck took a real beating this winter due to all the snow and ice.  It really needs to be sanded and re-painted.  I just need the time and energy to do it!  But...in the last couple of weeks, I've cleaned off the table, benches, chairs and tables and added some cute decor.  Claire decided one evening to sit out and do her homework....she loves doing her homework outdoors.  We are so thankful that winter and the cold early spring is behind us and that summer is just another month away!

Claire doing her Trig homework on our much loved deck

  • MOMS NIGHT OUT!  Last evening, some of the members of the small group I lead, along with a couple of other friends, met at a local nature preserve to do some easy hiking, followed by a trip to a local dairy bar for soft serve ice cream or frozen yogurt.  I love these times of fellowship and fun!  It's so important to cultivate our friendships...and when you are united in Christ, it's even more special.  I have started a group called SUMMER FUN EVENTS GROUP and several ladies (and husbands!) have joined.  We have some fun things planned for the summer months.  I'm excited about it and am hoping many people join in.  Bible study together is important but having fun/doing life together is just as important.  And it IS a vision of our small group ministries at church to do this.  I'm so thankful for my group of friends.  We are there for each other.

That wraps up my faves!  I hope you all have a wonderful, relaxing weekend!!


Simply Linda said...

Thanks for the smiles. I do miss that area, we are in discussion of when I finish school of moving back to that area/Catskills. We shall see. I love your swing and your flowers. Congrats on the hike(s). Blessings

Melanie said...

Oh my, what a lovely swing! And I would love to have a deck to sit out on. You are so blessed. Your hiking goals are impressive. I have a goal of hiking to the top of Clingman's Dome in the Smoky Mountains some day when my knees are better. I love mountain vistas. Have a blessed weekend.

Barbara H. said...

I love petunias - I usually have a few pots of them. That swing looks cozy! I've never seen a rounded deck like that - very nice! The mom's night out sounds fun.

ellen b said...

Wow! Good for you for getting out early for a hike. That's a fun challenge! Flowers are so great this time of year. We are finally going to put our deck covers up this weekend!
Have a good weekend.

Deb said...

I love your swing and your deck! You will have some nice outdoor time this summer. Your flowers are a nice touch. I love hiking but rarely have anyone to hike with and it is now too warm to hike here. Your hiking challenge sounds like a lot of fun, as does the small group from your church that you lead. What a great week you have had! Have a good weekend.

aspiritofsimplicity said...

Your deck looks like a great place for doing homework and I just love your swing!

Melanie Lopata said...

I love your deck!! And the swing looks comfy. We have an outdoor swing but the cushions aren't as....um, cushiony.

Looks like you had a great time hiking!!!!!

Susanne said...

Oh my I am drooling over your swing. I have wanted one for so long but until there is no more dayhome and all the paraphenelia, including a swing set, that goes with that it won't be happening. Enjoy that thing and have a swing and coffee for me! Your deck looks very inviting with that circular bench seating and the flowers sure brighten it up! Congrats on getting another fire tower knocked off the list. Glad to hear that Dave was able to join you on that hike.

Willow said...

That swing is calling to me! You're going to love it this summer! My flowers are planted and now I have to figure out how they will get water while we are gone on two trips this summer...
The deck looks wonderful too!

Willow said...

Oh I meant to add--hurray on that hike! You're going to accomplish your goal this summer!