Entries Tagged as 'Life'

Go with the flow, or um stones in this case



Sometimes you just have to go with the flow when an opportunity presents itself, and sometimes the flow entail some 800 pound stones. Well it does at least if you live with my family. And that’s just what happened around here this weekend we went with the flow had an unexpected project begin.

You may remember on Friday I mentioned these giant stones showed up at our door. First it was one early in the week and then many more arrived on Thursday.  My father rescued them from being  ground up into gravel. He just couldn’t let that happen. They were large, flat, and HEAVY. Perfect for creating natural stone stairs to the lower level of our yard. See the one on the bottom right? That came from the bottom of a lake in the next town. I think it’s only fitting they it’s come to live in our yard now.

Did I mention these things were heavy? Yeah, I’m playing Captain Obvious today. That’s where this little Kubota came in. We borrowed it to move the stones around (some days it pays to have family in the construction business with access to heavy machinery).

So here’s how this whole thing went down. We have this ramp in our yard that connects the top level to the lower level. Here’s how it looked when bought our house.

It was kind of awkward and steep to walk down when we moved in and didn’t have a real transition to the lower level and the above ground pool. We’ve always planned to add some nice steps some day. Over time we widened it some and made the slope a bit more gradual but we stil knew that ultimately we’d like to have me wide steps transition from one level of the yard to another. So when opportunity knocked we jumped at the chance to snag those huge stones for free.

My Uncle was working a job where he saw these large stones that were about to be smashed to smithereens. After talking to my Father a bunch of times he knew that he wanted some large stone steps to from the grass level to the pool level below but hadn’t started that project yet due to the expense of such large stone. First he brought the first large one over and then later in the week called and asked if we wanted more. The owner didn’t care if we took them. After a series of swapped trucks and loaned machines so confusing that I’m still fuzzy on the details we had some stones and a small machine arrive late Thursday.

They started by placing the first pieces at the bottom and slowly working their way up the ramp. Placing them gently with the machine to create a meandering pathway. The machine carried them to the sight but some still need to be nudged into place by hand. I love the top step that’s the one that came from the bottom of the lake. It’s got a rounded almost pie shaped wedge and beautiful coloring,  absolutely perfect for that spot.

We still have some work to do on the stairs but for this weekend we have the beginning of a stair path to the lake below.

So how about that? One Thursday evening we happened to have a truckload of stones, a Kubota and a meandering path turned stone stairway arrive in our yard.


Never a dull moment



These unexpectedly appeared at our house yesterday.

This did too!

And they started working on this.

Oh boy, it’s going to be one busy weekend!

Have a great weekend everybody. See you all next week.

A 3 hour tour (part 2)



Welcome to our lake and the 2nd installment of our 3 hour tour. We’re back as the Skipper, Gilligan and Maryann to show you some of our favorite sights around our lake and some of the beautiful homes we admire as we float along the lake. So sit back relax and read along as we take you on part 2 of our 3 hour tour.

First stop, this lovely beauty. I’m a sucker for round rooms, they create so much interest from the outside. I can’t resist resist 3 levels of decks to enjoy the views are to die for. What’s a lake house without a good deck to sit on? The detail of the stonework along the bottom portion of the house is just stunning.

The attention to detail in the stone really sets this house apart from many of the other beauties on the lake, the stone framed porthole opening and the keystone details are inspiring. I can see great summer BBQ’s ‘s taking place in this setting. I imagine a great outdoor kitchen tucked away behind that porthole, just calling my name to grill a big juicy burger.

I love the blue of this stunner, reflecting elements of the water onto the facade. Their use of stone is tastefully done and gives an elegant touch without the extreme expense of stoning the entire house. The shingle style siding always screams summer, sand and surf to me.

Even their boat house is cute. Sign me up to sleep in that room upstairs, imagine the views from that deck. My husband would love it, you could fish from the balcony!

I think the colors chosen for the exterior of this home is what sets  it apart. The neutral coloring makes this house fit snugly into it’s surroundings, and that boat house, talk about charming! But check out that driveway, I wonder how they stop their cars from sliding into the lake during the icy season?

This has to be on my list of top 10 homes on the lake. It’s so gorgeous I was compelled to take pictures of it from every angle. I love it. I plan to post many more pictures of this beauty and it’s neighbors which are equally gorgeous in our next installment of our 3 hour tour. Until then I’ll be dreaming of that rolling lawn in this stunning estate.

For now we’re over and out,

Skipper, Gilligan and Maryann

A 3 hour tour (part 1)



Now that spring is here and in full force and we’ve been released from the confines of the house we’ve been spending some warm spring afternoons touring our lake on the boat. It’s a lovely way to spend the afternoon drooling over the grander houses on the lake, gathering some inspiration for own own along the way. Even though we’ve lived in this area of NJ most of our lives you never really get to see the houses on the lake until you see them from the water’s edge. There’s something quirky about water front houses, they usually have their best side facing the water so you really can’t appreciate the size or the beauty of these homes on a Sunday drive in the car from the road. Many of the homes have their small detached garages facing the street, and if you’re able to walk around them they open up to beautiful large homes. Since we only just recently moved onto our lake and bought a boat it still knocks my socks off every time I come across these beauties that I’ve ony seen from the road only to reveal on the water their true beauty, it’s something like a secret treasure.

So we took the time on our last lazy Sunday afternoon boat drive to snap a few pictures to show off a few of our favorite houses and spots on our lake. Showing off that there may be something more to New Jersey than the “Situation’s abs” (although I am addicted to the “Jersey Shore”) the parkway and meatheads. Come take a look at part 1 of our 3 hour tour. Just call us the Skipper, Gilligan & Maryann.

I’m in love with this one with the multiple levels of decks , the arches on the ground floor, the large lawn and that round turret on the right. I imagine there is a master bedroom sitting area in the top floor round room with magnificent views. What a place to relax and read a book that would be! Or dream of a Sunday morning relaxing on the balcony eating breakfast and drinking a cup of coffee.

These three house together are amazing. What a gorgeous setting looking at them together. I love how they have organically grown together over time. You can tell that each one is unique, a builder hasn’t come along and just plopped three identical houses side by side. Check out those pink flowering trees on the water’s edge, and the white flowering trees behind the houses.

Check out this sprawling beauty! Look at all the rooflines and peaks. I love those retaining walls, a great, beautiful way to tame a sloped yard. If you look closely at the top retaining wall there’s a glass fence, I bet there is a gorgeous inground pool just calling your name. Lake too cold? Come take a dip in the marvelous heated in-ground pool complete with a glass fence so as not to obstruct your view.

This has to be one of the most majestic old mansions on the lake. Look at all that stonework. I love the meandering path down to the water. It looks like you should have afternoon tea with the ladys on the veranda in your summer dress and sun hat. Could you imagine the bathing beauties about 100 years ago frolicking on that lawn. They say this was a happening place to “summer” for the rich at one time.

This is my husbands favorite, He’s a sucker for A-Frame style homes and this one is his perfect idea of A-Frame meets log cabin rustic. tucked away in the trees you can feel like you’re the only one around for miles. Or hop in your boat and go to one of the boat-up restaurants or bars on the lake enjoy the night away!

Now that you’ve seen just a few of our favorites be sure to check back for more as we boat on our lake this summer and take you along for the ride in our 3 hour tour series. We’re looking forward to it, should be a blast!

For now we’re over and out!

Skipper, Gilligan and Maryann

365 days ago…



…our baby boy was born. 365 days ago at 3:53 am.

We knew you were going to change our lives, but oh boy, we didn’t even have a clue!

366 days ago you were 3 days past your due date and oh boy, we thought the day would never come when you would arrive.

In 365 days we’ve rocked you, walked you, snuggled you, fed you, changed you and loved you. You have, sat up, crawled, walked, said your first words and got your first tooth. What a year it’s been baby boy! Mommy and Daddy love you more than you’ll know, until the day your little one comes into the world.

Pardon us while we go snuggle our baby boy and remember what life was like just 365 days ago today.

Happy 1st Birthday Nikolas!

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