Donna’s Famous Cinnamon Rolls

We did it! We finally got to Donna's on a Wednesday morning IN TIME for cinnamon rolls! (Back story - once this summer we made the mistake of thinking there would still be some at 9am ;-) but then Donna and her son Michael informed me you can just let them know on Tuesdays how many you need "reserved" for your party and there will never again be a sad-faced-little-girl among you! Whew!) We joked that we were there celebrating the fact that Elsa lost another tooth. Don't tell her, but we were really there because Mommy was on Market Street running errands on a Tuesday and actually remembered to pop in and ask Donna for a reservation ;-) A couple notes on Donna's: Great diner food Cash only open Mon-Fri 6am-2pm open Saturday 7am-1:30pm closed Sunday call (607) 936-9732 on Tuesday if you want cinnamon rolls on Wednesday ;-) Donna also has an amazing collection of vintage Pyrex sets on display. Anna and Elsa love the blue and pink the best

Travel Adventures | Tips for Visiting Colmar, France

Fall always makes me think of France. And travel. And my best friend Kirsten. Probably because two of our favorite bestie-trips happened in the fall when we lived in Europe at the same time. We were just a half hour from France, so we often hopped over when we had a hankering for macrons and other ridiculously amazing food. Since I have a heart full of miss for France today, how about introducing you to one of my favorite cities? Welcome to stunning Colmar! Be prepared to have your face melted off with awesome architecture, gorgeous colors, and adorable details! Every street is a new collection of beautiful colors! You could wander the city all day and your eyes would never get bored! Colmar is a magical place to spend a couple days. You can easily walk around the whole city center, so it's a great place to take kids.  They also have a fabulous Christmas Market, so you would have even more to see around the

Easy Adirondack Hike | Mt. Jo

Today I want to share my experience(s) of a great hike in the Adirondacks that is totally accessible to newbies and kids.      We had a lot of fun taking Mom up Mt. Jo as her first Adirondack mountain during family vacation this summer, and it was such a great little hike with a wonderful summit, that I thought it would be a good intro for the girls this fall!     Mt. Jo takes about two and a half hours round trip (with kids) and is a really cool way to get a taste of a "true" ADK hike and summit view.     So pack up your water and your snacks and head to Adirondac Loj Rd. for parking at the High Peaks Information Center. It's $10/day and you get a last minute bathroom stop. Plus there's park staff to answer any last minute questions and a small store for any last minute supplies you forgot. The signs from this area are pretty clear, but to get to the trailhead of Mt. Jo you'll actually walk

George Eastman and Photography | Easy Day Trip

When you think of the dawn of photography in America, you probably think of Kodak. #kodakmoment  The Eastman Kodak Company and it's founder George really paved the way for making photography accessible to all. Did you know that he invented the first average-joe-accessible camera in 1888? Atta boy George!     I love going to the George Eastman house and learning about the man and the company that has really shaped the trajectory of my life. I mean, besides the fact that it's kind of my job, photography is also my art! When I was a kid I used to say that I wanted to "be an artist" when I grew up. And I always had this image in my head of some oddly French stereotype of a beret-wearing portrait-painter dude (odd because for a 3rd grader who'd never been to France that's what I would think of, but also because as a female I would have a tough time rocking the handlebar mustache!) Turns out painting wasn't really my thing. So I guess I figured

International Vintage Soaring Meet 2016

  YOU GUYS. In case you haven't seen my Instagram-bragging, I had the really cool opportunity to photograph the opening weekend of the International Vintage Soaring Meet at Harris Hill for the Star Gazette! (Thanks Star Gazette!)      You can see my whole gallery for the newspaper here, but you can also go right on over there and see the fun for yourself!     The National Soaring Museum is just a stone's throw from Corning... like... I could see Little Joe from my excited perch in the front seat of the glider! And besides the fact that Harris Hill has tons of awesome family activities all the time, I forget that you can just waltz on over to the NSM's runway and watch the tow-planes and gliders take off!      So if you want to see the gliders taking off, park right in front of the museum and just watch from the fence. (Walk around a little... you can see a lot of the gliders up close, and

Corning Area Community Concert Band

  We had the pleasure of attending another performance of the Corning Area Community Concert Band on Thursday at Centerway Square.     These talented folks get together once a week to practice and then they perform in our community just for the love of music!     The band celebrated it's 40th Anniversary last year and there are quite a few members who have been involved from the beginning. You still have a few more chances to catch them this season but I'm most excited about their July 4th performance before the fireworks!  Come check them out and support instrumental music in our

Local Gems | Catharine Valley Trail | Bike Path

{Alright you know how this works but just a reminder, any amazon links you see in this post are affiliate links. By clicking on them, you help me bring home some more bacon, at no extra cost to you! You don’t even have to buy what I’m blathering on about, but if you buy anything at all, you are helping support this blog and this business. THANK YOU!}   So my Brother and I took our first longish bike ride with Elsa and Anna on Memorial Day and I have a few tips if you're going to try it with kids.     Catharine Valley Trail is a very beautiful path to ride or walk (though it's 24 miles total so that's a long walk!) that follows an old railroad route and the towpath of the old Chemung Canal. I'm reading a really dry (yet embarrassingly fascinating) library book about the history of Corning and the surrounding area and it was super fun to bike this historic path. I would have had more time to be nerdy if I wasn't keeping such a close eye on

Link Roundup | New York State Parks

  As I mentioned in this post, it's the centennial celebration year for our National Parks Service. And if you're like me, and not too sure that there's a National Park trip in your family's future for this year, how about checking out more of what your local area has to offer?     Right now at the Rockwell Museum there are some pretty awesome historic images on display from Watkins Glen State Park. Which apparently is rocking the #3 Best State Park in America by 2015's USA Today's readers!      With Spring Break starting tomorrow (at least at the Corning-Painted Post schools) I am thinking not only of things to do this coming week, but also in the summer.     Did you know that the modern American notion of a vacation was coined not too far from here? In 1869 William H.H. Murray published a wilderness guidebook about the Adirondacks, and the virtues of "vacating" the city to explore the

Happy 100th Birthday to Our National Parks!

  So get this. In the interest of full disclosure, I was that girl. The one who pronounced Yosemite "Yo-sem-ight" until my friend from California set me straight. (If you're freaking out because you're also that girl and you still don't know how to pronounce it, it's "Yo-sem-ih-tee" ... you're welcome.) It's okay to laugh at me... life's too short to take myself too seriously ;-)      So anyways, after I knew how to pronounce the name of one of our country's most amazing National Parks, I had the pleasure of experiencing it with my sisters! It was one of the most beautiful trips of my life!  There was also a LOT of hiking involved and I was very out of shape, so it was one of the most challenging trips, too. But that's a story for another day!     Have you heard that this year marks 100 years since the National Park Service was established? After falling in love with Yosemite, I definitely can't wait to go