Taking excerpts from this months Elle Decor, Sue Halpern writes,
"Once the summer haunt of cultured and sophisticated New York, here the Rockefeller's, Posts, and other industrialists built their "great camps", where luxury mixed with rustic style. There are 46 Adirondack mountains over 4,000 feet, known as the "high peaks", and almost all of them have well maintained trails. There is not a better climate than in the Adirondacks in the summer, the average temperature is 73. There is no humidity. Just make sure you come after the black flies have left in early July. Protected by law, as the Adirondack Forest preserve, in 1895, it became the country's first wilderness playground. It is bigger than Yosemite, Yellowstone, and Glacier national parks combined.But unlike those places, which were established to ensure the existence of wild spaces largely removed from human habitation, the Adirondacks is a 6 million acre patchwork of of public and private land where the human community coexists with the wild one."
My entire family history is steeped in Upstate New York or, the Adirondacks. Both my Mom and Dad are from there, and I have always felt a connection to it even though I am firmly planted on the West Coast. My mom just bought an old "Camp" on Chateaugay Lake, that was originally built by my great, great, grandfather, who was once the Senator of New York, after blowing his arm off while duck hunting. (weird story, I know) This was our first summer there, after extensive renovations and clean up, and we had so much fun! The initials of kids who stayed there in the 1920's are still there, all the way up to the 1980's. West Coast history has nothing on the East Coast, everywhere you look there are small, late 1700's early 1800's cemeteries, gorgeous old houses crumbling from age, and a wealth of old timers ready to tell you their story.
One of my favorite things in the house...This phone....
I love big ol' screen porches, where the breeze can come in, but the bugs can't...
The cemetery where almost my entire mother's side of the family is buried.
Cemeteries are everywhere in New York. You don't see them nearly as much in Seattle, especially the tiny little ones that are everywhere, which must have only had a few family's buried there. I feel like the tradition of getting buried has lost some steam in recent years. It seems many more people just want to be cremated, am I wrong? I don't think I want to waste valuable resources, like land, or even money, on getting buried, and yet I have so much respect for the tradition of it, and the beauty. The old tombstones, the beautiful old family gates are so interesting. They always bring me out of my little fantasy world for a moment and make me realize how quick we are to forget about our own mortality.
My sweet boy having the time of his life in the sand.
My mom's amazing house that she grew up in...My grandmother still lives there.
Next up... Sag Harbor... Hope you are having a happy summer!
Photo's by Jennifer Ament