Friday, September 19, 2008

At the end of a season

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

This is the time of year that’s sort of in limbo. Summer is over but Autumn isn’t quite here yet. The leaves on the trees are dull looking but still a washed-out green, not yet ready to put on their vibrant show. The undergrowth in the woods has died back and we are now able to see into the woods further than we could a month ago. After our heat wave of last weekend (compliments of Ike) we are now having cool nights in the 40s and lovely days in the 60s. Perfection! So why does part of me want Autumn to come on and get on with it, make the trees change and etc? Why can’t I be satisfied to just enjoy this wonderful fall weather?

The sun is lower in the sky and the quality of the light is much softer. Here it shines through the leaded glass of our front door, creating a wonderful prism on the wall.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The oaks are dropping their acorns and what doesn’t fall to the ground naturally is being helped along by squirrels in the tree tops. Our recently delivered two cords of firewood is finally all stacked and waiting. I look forward to our first fire in the fireplace of the year.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Most things are done blooming now and my garden beds are looking pretty sad and blah. I do, however, have some of this pretty stuff blooming. I don’t know what it is, do you? I think I remember it showing up about this time last year too.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The pool was closed for the season yesterday. We’ll still continue to go down and sit in the cabana but it won’t be the same without being able to look into its blue depths. We really didn’t get much use out of it this year. August was pretty much a washout because the temperatures were unseasonably cool. We’ve had some hot weather this month but too late to bring the pool temps back up to a swimmable level. We really are considering a heater for next year. But they are so darned expensive, both to put in and run.

We have a busy weekend planned. Today we will step back in time and join in the revelry at the New York Renaissance Faire for their last weekend of the season. Rick will don his lace-up leather boots, billowy white shirt and vest, and I will once again put on my bodice and leave my bra behind.

Tomorrow we have tickets to the last ever Yankees game in Yankee Stadium. Should be fun!

Hope your weekend is a good one!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Another pleasant Sunday

The rain washed everything clean and brought with it much cooler temperatures yesterday. That’s a good thing and a bad thing. Good because a lovely cool breeze wafted through the house making the curtains billow out, breathing fresh air in; bad because the combination of new rain water and the cooler temps made the pool temperature drop by three or four degrees. boo hoo. It was pretty cloudy for the better part of the day and not very conducive to splashing around the pool. Still, we hung out in the cabana. We feel we have to take every advantage of the pool that we can since all too soon it will be closed for the season. At least that’s the best rationale that we can come up with for spending another Sunday doing not much of anything.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

We kicked off our shoes

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

and proceeded to kick back ourselves and just relax and read while the cool breeze blew through our little poolside oasis.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Of course, with us there is always food involved and this was no exception. I tried out a new recipe Grape-Mint Salsa. It’s made with both green and red grapes, chopped mint, chopped chives, a jalapeno pepper and some lime juice. (Follow the link if you’re interested in the recipe.) Sugared pita chips are served alongside for dipping.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

And, if you’re following along with the Robinson’s you should also know that there is always some kind of drink to go along with the food. Another new recipe, this one taken from Rachel Ray’s website: Beer Margaritas. Oh my. I am not a beer drinker at all, but this is enough to change my mind. delicious. refreshing. addictive. Take 4 12-ounce bottles of ice-cold Corona, 1 cup of tequila, one 12-ounce container of limeade concentrate and mix together. Salt glass rims with kosher salt and serve with wedges of lime.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The only downside to these that I can think of is that they go down a lot easier than a normal margarita. Maybe too easily ...

The day got sunnier as it went on and we did take a quick dip, then just floated around for a while.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Our little garden frog was happy too.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

For dinner we grilled pizza. The crust comes out cracker thin and crispy. yum. One with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, portobella mushrooms and roasted red peppers,

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

and one with caramelized onions, gorgonzola cheese and black olives (my particular favorite.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

A walk after dinner down the road with the dogs topped off another great (if not very productive) Sunday.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Lunch al fresco

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

One of the joys of summer is eating al fresco. We particularly like to have Sunday lunch down by the pool. I load everything we’ll need on a tray and make my way carefully down two sets of deck stairs. I like to set a nice table with tablecloth and cloth napkins and a bouquet of flowers cut freshly from my own yard.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

This week’s Sunday lunch was a vegetable risotto with fresh peas, asparagus and spinach.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Of course to have a proper Sunday lunch you simply must open up a bottle of nice wine. We enjoyed an Alsatian Gewurztraminer with our risotto.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The weather was lovely, warm but not too hot. After lunch we ended up spending most of the afternoon in the pool. A truly decadent way to spend a summer afternoon.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Over the 4th

I can’t seem to get back in the swing of things here. We’ve spent days getting our “new” kitchen back into some semblance of order. It’s amazing how much thought goes into what goes where. Our cabinet configuration is just different enough to warrant changing things around from what they were. Our new ovens need a little calibration and the cooktop takes some getting used to. Our old ovens had a noisy timer that just kept ringing until you turned it off. More like an alarm than a timer. Now our new oven timer makes a very quiet pinging noise, almost like it doesn’t want to disturb anyone. Oh, excuse me, so sorry to bother you but I believe your food is cooked.

We’ve managed to do a few other things over the long holiday weekend as well. Here are just a few.

Although the weather has not been great—cloudy with spotty rain—we have managed to spend some time outside on our newly refurbished deck and down by the pool in our poolside gazebo.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

The gazebo is a not only a nice retreat during the day, but also at night.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

And what could be more American on the 4th of July than delicious grilled hamburgers, macaroni salad and sweet corn? And yes, it tasted every bit as good as it looks.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Today finds us moving out of our bedroom and into one of the smaller rooms as tomorrow our master bath undergoes a complete rip out and remodel. It’s going to be so awesome when it’s finished, but until then it’s going to be noisy, dusty, and inconvenient for the next two weeks. Photos to follow, both before and through the process.

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Freeze. Thaw. Freeze. Thaw. That seems to be the theme lately. Winter can’t seem to make up its mind. Right now we’re having extremely mild weather. Daytime highs of nearly 60ºF. Rain instead of snow. The icy white blanket that covered our yard has nearly all melted away. Just a few weeks ago our pool looked like an ice skating rink, and if I wasn’t so afraid of tearing the pool cover I’d have gone skating! Now it’s taken on the persona of a reflecting pool.

I liked the reflections of the trees and the way some leaves scattered themselves around.

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

I imagine it won’t be long before Winter decides to make its return. Blustery winds, snow, frozen ground. Come on, Winter, bring it on! What are you waiting for?


Welcome, I'm Lynne. You know me better as a 'new' Jersey Girl. But now I've moved once again, this time to North Carolina. Here I write about my thoughts, good food, and of course, dogs.

© 2006-2022 Lynne Robinson All photography and text on this blog is copyright. For use or reproduction please ask me first.

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