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terrain holiday 2017

November 21, 2017

lighted wreath wall

Typically, this is the week everyone starts thinking about holiday shopping.

lighted balls Terrain

fir trees at Terrain

I have definitely started thinking about it myself and I have visited a few of my favorite stores.  Because I am such a visual person, I don’t really enjoy internet shopping.  I like to see the merchandise and enjoy how it is styled and displayed.  And, I certainly appreciate a beautifully and creatively wrapped purchase over a box left at my doorstep!

lighted tree Terrain

building a zinc village

As a homage to brick and mortar stores, this week I am sharing a few photos from my favorites this holiday season.

greens for the holidays at Terrain

Holiday Magic at Terrain

Today, some photos from my favorite home and garden store – Terrain.  For overall holiday décor, Terrain is hard to beat!  A visit to the Westport store is a sure way to put your holiday spirit into overdrive as well as inspire your holiday décor!

Terrain Holiday

holiday plant at Terrain Westport

Thanks for stopping by!

Holiday tree with red bulbs

Remember to take pleasure in simple things and have a blessed Thanksgiving!   xo Jackie

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amelia island beach memories

November 10, 2017

Ritz Carlton Amelia Island Beach

Here in Connecticut, the weather has turned cold.  Thoughts of fall are being replaced by winter and holiday preparations…Christmas decorations are on display everywhere!

The beach at The Ritz Amelia Island

I think it is the perfect day to take a glimpse of some warmer days that are not that far behind us!  Don’t you miss that feeling of sand between your toes?

tables amelia island

For today’s Friday field trip, a few photos of the beach taken during my recent stay at the Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island, Florida.

umbrella on the beach amelia island

Enjoy!

walkway Amelia Island

Thanks for stopping by!

Have a fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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giraffe love

November 3, 2017

close up giraffee at White Oak

I was very fortunate to have had the opportunity recently to visit White Oak Conservation in Northwest Florida.  White Oak is one of the world’s premiere wildlife breeding, education, and training facilities.  This wildlife conservation facility spans 13,000 acres of pine and hardwood forest and wetlands.  Its mission is to save endangered wildlife and habitats through sustainable conservation breeding, education, and responsible land stewardship.

giraffees at White Oak

Founded in 1982, White Oak leads professional efforts to improve veterinary care, develop holistic animal management techniques, and better understand the biology of critically endangered species.

As you can tell by the photos in my post today for Friday field trip, my favorite part of my visit to White Oak was the opportunity to be ‘up close and personal’ with a group of giraffes!  That, and getting together with a fabulous group of people, made my afternoon at White Oak one I will never forget!

close up of giraffee face

I also had the chance to see rhinoceros, cheetahs (including baby cheetahs!), and antelope as well as a brief sighting of some okapi (a beautiful and rare giraffe relative).

2 giraffees at White Oak

Founded in 1982, White Oak is well known in the conservation and zoo communities and leads professional efforts to improve veterinary care, develop holistic animal management techniques, and better understand the biology of critically endangered species.

I hope today’s post may inspire you to visit your local zoo!  A shout out to White Oak and to all the friends that shared the amazing afternoon visit with me!

feeding a giraffee at White OakThanks for stopping by!

Have a fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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jeni’s ice cream

October 20, 2017

flight of ice cream at Jenis in Columbus

I have eaten a lot of ice cream in my day and I thought I had a couple favorite spots that couldn’t be beat. That is, until my recent trip to Ohio!

I found the ice cream by which all other ice creams should be measured! This super flavorful and perfectly textured dessert is sold at Jeni’s scoop shops throughout Ohio (and select other states). OMG. It is truly amazing!

Jeni's scoop shop in Columbus, Ohio

I was visiting the motherland…all Jeni’s ice creams are handcrafted in the production kitchen in Columbus, Ohio. Talking to locals about the ice cream, we actually even found someone who planned their wedding colors around a Jeni’s ice cream flavor! (If you are curious, that flavor was brambleberry crisp.)

What flavors did I try? On my visits to Jeni’s while in Columbus, I ordered a ‘flight’ of half scoops – 3 half scoops served in a dish. This way I could try 3 different flavors per visit.

On one of my two trips to Jeni’s while in Ohio, cream puff was my favorite flavor of the three!

close up Jenis ice cream German village

Cream puff is a salty-sweet custard vanilla reminiscent of the filling inside old world cream puffs. Jeni was inspired by the massive cream puffs served in the 100 year old Ohio restaurant, Schmidts when she created this yummy flavor!

flight of ice cream at Jenis

My second flavor choice was salted peanut butter with chocolate flecks. This is the perfect flavor for anyone that loves peanut butter and chocolate together. Originally named ‘The Buckeye State,’ this regular flavor is made with salted ground roasted peanuts and rich chopped dark chocolate.

My third flavor choice was brown butter almond brittle. Made with a sticky almond toffee candy crushed into butter cream ice-cream, this flavor is inspired by Krokan – a Norwegian toffee-like treat.

finishing a flight of ice cream at Jenis

In flight number 2, on my second visit to Jeni’s, the sweet cream biscuits and peach jam was my favorite flavor! Buttermilk ice-cream, crumbled shortcake biscuits and swirls of sweet-tart jam made from Georgia peaches made this flavor over-the-top delicious!

I also tried wild berry lavender – a berry flavor of pulverized black currants scented with sweet orange and lavender essential oils. Because of my love for lavender, I found this flavor very unique and tasty!

wildberry lavendar ice cream at Jenis Ohio

Lastly, I tried sun-popped corn. This flavor is made with organic popcorn kernels popped by the sun in kettles in the New York Hudson Valley. It truly tastes like a bowl of freshly popped popcorn!

Jeni’s is consistently adding new flavors – both temporary and standards, so there are always interesting flavors to try – like sweet potato éclair or super moon (blue violet and vanilla marshmallow swirled together)!

standard flavor at Jenis

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams was founded in 2002 by Jeni Britton Bauer using whole ingredients with dairy from grass pastured cows and no synthetic flavorings or dyes. Jeni is a James Beard Award-winning author of two cookbooks and her New York Times best-seller Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams has been dubbed the “homemade-ice-cream making Bible” by the Wall Street Journal with more than 100,000 copies in print!

sample spoons at Jenis ice cream in Ohio

Used sample tasting spoons at Jeni’s scoop shop in Columbus, Ohio

Guess what? If your mouth is watering and you wish you could try Jeni’s ice cream – you can! Jeni’s is available online as well as in select markets! If you don’t have a shop near you, I strongly recommend you order some at least once in your life – especially if you are an ice cream lover!

on Jenis scoop shop wall in Columbus

Thanks for stopping by! I hope I have inspired you to make or try a new flavor of ice cream!

Have a wonderful weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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german village, columbus

October 13, 2017

picturesque in german village ohio

The most picturesque place we found during my recent visit to Columbus with a friend was just south of the downtown – the quaint, historic neighborhood of German Village.

vintage chair in german village columbus

Settled back in the 19th century by German immigrants, the neighborhood is now a hip location to shop, dine, or just walk around. With many alley-like streets made of brick and pristine landscaping, German Village oozes with character.

german village beautiful home columbus

We visited a few unique shops – like the 32-room bookstore called The Book Loft and the gift shop at the top of all the local’s list – Helen Winnemore’s.

pathway in german village

We also stopped at a candy shop for award-winning fudge and some ‘buckeyes’ to take home. In case you didn’t already know, Ohio is the ‘buckeye state’ and Brutus Buckeye is the mascot of Ohio State University – and, believe me, Columbus certainly has buckeye fever! The candy version of a buckeye is a peanut butter flavored ball dipped in chocolate!

annuals in german village columbus

Another noteworthy visit while in German Village was to Jeni’s scoop shop – with shops located throughout the city, this mouth-watering ice-cream brand originated in Columbus. (I will share more about Jeni’s in its own upcoming post!)

windy walk in german village ohio

window box in german village columbus

For dining, tourists can find a classic German meal at Schmidt’s, but the hip locals favor Lindey’s. And, because Lindey’s has the best outdoor dining in the Village, that was our restaurant choice for dinner while in German Village.

Lindeys in Columbus Ohio

Outdoor dining at Lindey’s in German Village, Columbus, Ohio

You can probably tell by my photos, that for us, the best part about visiting German Village in Columbus, Ohio was admiring the buildings and the landscaping! Walking around the neighborhood was like attending a garden tour!

window box german village columbus ohio

I hope you have enjoyed my little piece of German Village on today’s Friday field trip!

german village columbus

Thanks for stopping by!

Have a wonderful weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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picking asian pears

September 15, 2017

asian pears close up on tree

What is better than getting fresh fruit at a Farmer’s Market?  Getting fresh fruit from a farm, of course!  Today, for Friday field trip you are joining me as I pick some Asian pears!

asian pears on the tree

Have you tasted an Asian pear?  They are delicious!  With a texture similar to apples, the light sweetness and crispy texture (maintained long after they are picked) of this pear make it a really great addition to salads.

asian pear taking a bite

Asian pears are native to Japan and China where they have been grown for over 3000 years.  The most common grown in the U.S. are Japanese varieties which have a shape similar to an apple.

asian pear close up

The first documented appearance of an Asian pear in the United States was recorded in 1820 when a Chinese sand pear was imported to Flushing, New York.

asian pear top of tree

Today Asian pears are grown not only throughout Asia but in Italy, Spain, Australia, France, Chile and New Zealand as well. In the United States, the bulk of commercial production comes from California and Oregon with a smaller supply coming out of Washington State, Kentucky and Alabama.

asian pear bunch on tree

We are so lucky to have some Asian pears growing here in Connecticut and people come from far away to pick them!

If you haven’t ever tried an Asian pear, I hope I have inspired you to do so!  Sliced on a green salad and garnished with a fig vinaigrette…yum!

asian pear field

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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nybg

August 25, 2017

The best part about visiting a botanical garden is knowing that every visit is unique. There are so many variables that contribute to creating the environment – ensuring that no two visits are ever the same! And, with 250 acres and over 1,000 plants, there is certainly plenty to admire! For Friday field trip today, we are visiting the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG). Spanning 250 acres and containing over 1,000 plants, there is certainly plenty to admire and each visitor to NYBG is sure to experience it in a different way. Here are a few of my favorite glimpses from a visit on a rainy day in August! Enjoy! Have a fabulous weekend! Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

The best part about visiting a botanical garden is knowing that every visit is unique.  There are so many variables that contribute to creating the environment – ensuring that no two visits are ever the same!  And, with 250 acres and over 1,000 plants, there is certainly plenty to admire!

NYBG herb garden

NYBG water lilly

For Friday field trip today, we are visiting the New York Botanical Garden (NYBG).  Spanning 250 acres and containing over 1,000 plants, there is certainly plenty to admire and each visitor to NYBG is sure to experience it in a different way.

NYBG hydrandgea

NYBG fern

Here are a few of my favorite glimpses from a visit on a rainy day in August!

NYBG bench

NYBG water garden

Enjoy!

NYBG black eyed susans

NYBG rock garden waterfall

NYBG conservatory

Have a fabulous weekend!  Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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eclipse cookies

August 18, 2017

gifting eclipse cookies pleasure in simple things blog

I picked up a pair of glasses from my local library so I can watch the eclipse on Monday afternoon safely.  But, after all the hype, is that it?  Glance up to the sky wearing a pair of paper glasses?   I feel like there should be more!

How about a special snack?  For today’s Friday field trip, I am sharing my eclipse snack idea…black and white cookies!  Isn’t a classic New York black and white the perfect eclipse snack?  I thought so!

eclipse cookies from pleasure in simple things blog

I searched online for a recipe for the classic cookie and found many – I decided to go with a Gourmet Magazine recipe from February 2002.

Making the cookies makes the eclipse seem a little bit more like a celebration!  Because, after all, don’t all good celebrations include good food?

eclipse tags pleasure in simple things blog

My very first batch ever of black and white cookies was pretty successful!  (My only advice is to avoid getting crumbs in the white frosting!)  You still have time to make your own eclipse viewing snack!  If not a black and white, how about making some whoopie pies?

cookie tray eclipse cookies

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a fabulous weekend and remember to take pleasure in simple things!

Whoopie pies in 2024!  Happy eclipse viewing, Jackie

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baby goats…cute or creepy?

August 11, 2017

baby goat 2

Baby animals are cute, right?  I thought so…until, I spent some time around baby goats and had some second thoughts on that!

baby goat 10

For today’s Friday field trip, I will let you make your own decision!

goat 2

They start out all cute and cuddly…

 

baby goat 17

But then, maybe not so much?

baby goat 6

baby goat 11

And, what the heck is up with these eyes?!

baby goat 13

Creepy?

baby goat 15

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a wonderful weekend.

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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harkness memorial state park

August 4, 2017

garden flowers

Today, I am sharing a few photos from my walk around Harkness Memorial State Park.  The park is the home of Eolia, the former summer mansion purchased in 1907 by the Harkness family, set on over 230 seaside acres in Waterford, Connecticut.

gate at Harkness Park

shore at Harkness

Never having been to the park, my goal for my first visit was to explore the gardens on both the east and west lawns as well as the Alpine rock garden.

gardens at Harkness

Tree over a century old Harkness State Park

And, as it happened, the facility was being set up for a wedding on the afternoon I chose to visit, so I did not venture inside the mansion itself.

the mansion at Harkness State Park

column Harkness State Park

I hope you enjoyed a few photos of my walk around Harkness Memorial State Park.  If you should be in the area, it is definitely worth a visit and the park is easily accessed from I-95.

queen annes lace pleasure in simple things

ferns pleasure in simple things

The 200+ acres were left to the state of Connecticut in 1950; becoming a part of the state park system in 1952.  The park is open from 8:00 am to sunset all year long and entrance only requires a minimal parking fee.

Harkness coastline

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a fabulous weekend!

daisies at Harkness State Park

Remember to take pleasure in simple things, Jackie

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