Hyde Park Roosevelts


We got off our train in Poughkeepsie and met the National Parks Service shuttle for the Roosevelt Ride to Hyde Park and the homes we were to tour. Hyde Park is a very charming city with a lot to offer. The Culinary Institute, Vassar College, Marist College a Catholic College and of course The Roosevelt’s homes. Here we are in Top Cottage named because it is on the top of a hill where FDR entertained many of the dignitary’s. The home he lived in was his mother, Sara’s home. This was his place to get away from the mobs as he put it. The furniture are replicas of the originals but the building is the same.


FDR never spent a night here nor did his guests. They stayed at Springwood which you will see later in the post. He had picnics and important meetings. One thing I thought was quite interesting was that he would always serve toast and martini’s in the afternoon. This was something that he could do on his own even with his polio. If you look to the right of the couch there is a toaster. This cottage was also made handicap accessible before it’s time. It had wider doorways and and the faucet handles were lower among other things.


Here is my Tom, looking serious about making a presidential decision.


Another look at the toaster and from real pictures the furniture is a very close reproduction. I understand that the pieces are castoffs from Spingwood.


A hooked rug with Fala, FDR’s dog.


Actual pictures of visitors at Top Cottage.


FDR with a little girl who had polio on the front porch with FDR.


We got to sit in the chairs on this porch. It was a wonderful porch to sit and talk about what visitors had been sitting on this porch just like we were. Winston Churchill-4 times….probably talking about the war and the atomic bomb. The king and queen of England (Elizabeth’s parents) and Chiang Kai-shek to name a few. We felt this was one of our favorites sites.


This was the view from the porch and the most wonderful breeze came through those trees.


There were no steps around the porch just a mound where I was standing in the previous picture.


On to Val-Kill which was Eleanor’s cottage. She had this as her office and living room.


Eleanor’s wall of favorite family members.


Her chair where she would knit, read or write letters. She was a tall woman and this chair has a high back that made her comfortable.


Her favorite uncle-Theodore Roosevelt. Her father Elliot and Theodore were brothers.


The first presidential library. FDR had plans to only serve two terms and he had this built in the early 1940’s. He changed history by serving four terms.


This is the view from Springwood. In FDR’s day you could look straight down to the Hudson River.


The side view of Springwood. A nice screened in porth and the balcony is from FDR’S bedroom.


Springwood house, very regal


The graves of FDR and Eleanor, it is a beautiful area.


A part of the garden around the graves.


The other stunning side.


A picture of Winston Churchill laying a wreath on his grave.


Pieces of the Berlin Wall in a freedom area outside of the Presidential Library.


A bust of Winston Churchill. This was a day well spent, we enjoyed it thoroughly. I love history .



On this day we decided to take a train to Poughkeepsie where Franklin Delano Roosevelts mothers home (and where he grew up and lived) and his top cottage and also Elenore Roosevelts Val-Kill house is located. First we had to figure out the subway system and take it to Grand Central Station. We then asked where to buy the train tickets and had to go into the main concourse to do this. This is the area where the pictures are taken of Grand Central that I had seen. The subways amaze me because there seem to be levels and levels of them. Sometimes it is like we are coming up from the bowels of the earth. It is mind boggling.


So very busy, just like the saying “as busy as Grand Central Station”.


We were getting on the Hudson Line, since it follows the Hudson River all the way. It was an hour and 45 minute ride and stopped briefly at many stops.


The next pictures are what I observed out the train window. This is a parking lot, we decided that the back two rows were not getting their cars out soon.


One of the many bridges along the way.


High a top a cliff. Don’t know if there was a church in the trees or what that was about.


Doing some work on the bottom of the bridge.


The high cliffs were so pretty.


another bridge


A tall hill


This was like a ruined castle in the water.


This looked like a bog or something. It was just briefly covered in green. Lots to look at. Next installment-FDR’s home.Thanks for stopping!!

East Bound


We were on the road heading to New York City which we knew was not going to be an easy drive once we got there. We were on I-80 in Pennsylvania and 67 miles away.


I thought this was a majestic silhouette of the city of New York.


The first tunnel we had to go through was the Lincoln Tunnel. I cannot say it was an enjoyable experience. 10 or so lanes of cars making into two lanes to go through the tunnel.


I think it is still amazing that they build this tunnel to go through the river.


Little did we know,  now that we are in Manhattan that we would be on these streets many times. This is the actual reason why we came to New York City…to see Billy Joel play at Madison Square Garden.


Each day there are NYPD officers directing traffic.


Most people in NY have phones and they are using them all the time.


Buildings of New York and at the end the Empire State Building.


This might have been Times Square or Broadway.


Came off the subway by Macy’s many times.


NYPD directing traffic and keeping an eye on everything.


People, People everywhere and such a diverse group.


Vendors along the street.


Interesting statue.


I liked this one also.


Many dog walkers.


This was very cool. It was parked behind our hotel. I don’t know if it gets used in parades or what.


Just very neat. This is the end of our first day. Thanks so much for stopping.

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Oakwood Fine Arts Festival

syracuse art festival flyer

I am very excited to share with you the latest art fair information. I was just told that I was accepted to show at the Oakwood Fine Arts Festival on August 27th, 2016 in Syracuse Indiana. This should be a fantastic show at this beautiful resort on the lake. The weekend before I will be showing in Greenwood Indiana at the Wammfest Art Fair. This also has wine tasting, craft beers and music. The information is over on the right side of the website. I hope that you will be able to come and visit my booth.

Always Something to take a picture of


My husband and I have been on vacation this week. If you are friends with me on facebook you know this very well because I post pictures often of things I see or places we go. I like everyone to share in my fun. We were making a trip to New York City and this was our first stop because we didn’t want to drive straight through. This is Grove City PA…a nice little city that had a great outlet mall. For dinner this night we went to Elephant and Castle Inn, it had British food that was very good! I snapped a picture of this informative arm, thought that was pretty clever.


Since it was sunday the mall had closed at 6 p.m. but we still walked around since we had been sitting a lot that day while driving. Also our dinner needed to be walked off. There was this CUTE building and from it was coming the wonderful scent of baking donuts! We will be staying at the same place on the way home and you can bet I will be paying this place a visit!


I love little buildings! It is stone with a tin roof and look at those daylilies growing. It was adorable.


The lush hostas and ornamental grass are just lovely!


Look on the back….a waterwheel. I am looking forward to tasting these donuts.


This pot of flowers was gorgeous. The different types of flowers were perfect and the colors just made me go…Ahhhh!


I am going to use the colors in a painting, it is just beautiful.


The green, red and orange of these daylilies was perfect against this white fence.


In the middle of this mall is a wetlands. I was very impressed by that.


That’s a willow tree back there and then I wonder if in the spring this area blooms with color. I don’t know but can just imagine.


How handy this is…..a free, freestanding charger for your electronic devices. I just thought that was very generous. It just goes to show there is anything out there to take a picture of, even a mundane plug in. Keep checking back for the next installment of “The Hawkins go to New York”.



It looked like our neighbors had a cook out and friends over on the Fourth. They put on a fireworks show when it got dark and I worked on getting some good pictures. Here are my favorites. We had a wonderful, easy-going holiday. Hope you did too.

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Back to the Farmers Market


My sister Linda and I have not been able to participate in the Auburn Farmers Market for a month but we returned last Saturday. The flowers just keep getting prettier all the time. These were in our view from our parking spot.


When we get there and get set up she takes a walk to talk with the other vendors while I man the booth and sell the baked goods. We have a great time doing this together.  Next door to us is a vendor called Changing Seasonings. She makes makes many different wonderful seasonings. I will have more about her a little later.


Flower pots on the street. I loved the ornamental grass at the top. There were several pots all with different colors.



Here is Carrie Murphy, the artisan of seasonings. Her website is www.changingseasonings.com


Another booth with abundant squash and zucchini.


This booth had cherries!


Very nice gentleman, he had kale, zucchini and cucumbers.


A table of baked goods but very different than ours.


This week the dogs were abundant.


This couple stopped at our booth and were so nice that I had to get a picture of them.


They came and lowered the flag to half staff because of the police shootings.


Pair of dogs enjoying the shade.


We spoke at length with this owner. The dog is pampered by the business owners of downtown Auburn. He gets hot dogs, ice cream, all at certain times of the day and he knows when it is time.


One last pooch to share.


My purchases from the Changing Seasonings booth. The are 1 tablespoon containers. A nice amount to try before I buy the larger amounts.


This couple had all kinds of wonderful veggies and fruit. They were so cute when I asked if I could take their picture. She told her husband “come on you gotta stand up!” So we will be there again this Saturday from 7 am to 1 pm on the square in Auburn IN. You won’t be disappointed.


Lighter red cherries from the Orchard Ridge Farms.


The deep red cherry’s. I saw many bags of these cherry’s walking by.


Walking with a purpose, so many smells to sniff. Thanks for checking in!

Happy Birthday America


“The Constitution was made for the people and not the people for the Constitution.” -Theodore Roosevelt



The Bill of Rights were originally proposed to meet concerns from a number of Constitutional delegates that the Constitution, while effectively laying out the foundation of the US government, contained no guarantee of rights for its citizens. These were men who had just fought a revolution against a tyrannical government, and they felt that simply enumerating the powers of a government was no true protection against the rise of another tyrant. A compromise was reached which allowed the original Constitution to pass, with the understanding that amendments would be made immediately after passage. There were originally 12 amendments proposed, but only ten were approved by the three-fourths majority of state legislatures needed to amend the Constitution. Many of the protections Americans take for granted come from the Bill of Rights. Free speech, freedom of religion, the right to a trial by jury, requiring a warrant to search a private home and the right to bear arms are just a few of the more important rights guaranteed by these amendments. The first ten Amendments to the Constitution were passed in 1791 and are collectively known as the Bill of Rights.

The ten Amendments included in the Bill of Rights allow the following rights and freedoms to all Americans.

1. The First Amendment grants freedom of speech, freedom of press, freedom of assembly, and the right to protest.

2. The Second Amendment grants the right to bear arms

3. The Third Amendment states that soldiers cannot take over a home during war or peace without the homeowner’s permission.

4. The Fourth Amendment protects Americans from unreasonable and unlawful search and seizure of property.

5. The Fifth Amendment allows all citizens due process and states that a person cannot be forced to serve as a witness against himself when accused of a crime.

6. The Sixth Amendment provides a speedy and public trial by jury for all who are accused of a crime.

7. The Seventh Amendment also allows a trial by jury to be held for certain civil disputes.

8. The Eighth Amendment prevents those accused of suffering cruel and unusual punishment.

9. The Ninth Amendment states that no one’s Constitutional rights should be used to infringe upon the rights of another citizen.

10. The Tenth Amendment provides each state with powers that are not specifically assigned to the nation’s government in the Constitution.

And to End this Post an excerpt from a speech by Theodore Roosevelt.

Excerpt from the speech “Citizenship In A Republic”
delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on 23 April, 1910
download PDF of complete speech

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.






I don’t know how I was so lucky to be born an American but I am eternally grateful. Here is one of my favorite videos by Kid Rock. Born Free.

framed prints


My friend Kathy visited my booth when I was in Kalamazoo in early June. She purchased a print from the original Poppy Buds and shared her framing with me the other day. She used the neutral tone of some of the paper in the print for the frame and then used a grey background to pick up the grey in the picture. I am just thrilled and thank her for buying my art.


My friend Michelle came to a show that I was in late last year. She purchased a print of Big Love from my original. I think her black frame complements the picture very well along with to dotted paper for the background. I also think the detail on the frame is quite pretty. Thank you for making a home for my art.


My friend Nancy asked me to paint her granddaughters name on the blocks. Her mom also has owls in her room so we added a barn owl face. I thank you for asking me to paint these and I had such fun deciding on the designs of the letters. I love my friends, they are just great!