Murrock Farms – The Old Barn

IMG_2570 (1024x1024)A small section of the original barn (or at least it’s been there as long as Aunt Betty has been on the farm) still stands at Murrock Farms. Most of the barn was burned in a fire in 1984/1985 (I think I was there that summer? I seem to remember it, not just from stories).

IMG_2583 (1024x1024)IMG_2483 (768x1024)My cousin Darryl wants it to come down, but Aunt Betty likes it because it protects her raspberry bushes and peonies from the elements.

IMG_2489 (768x1024) IMG_2544 (1024x1024)For sure it is run down (the beadboard, though!) and doesn’t serve any other purpose but to store equipment and random odds and ends.

It also houses a chicken coop, which I forgot to take a photo of (urrrr!!). Aunt Betty told us there used to be more, but she suspects the weasels got the rest of them. The remaining chicken is a fiesty girl – she pecked the dog when it got too close.

IMG_2488 (925x1024)I love that it’s original to the property and of course it reminds me of my childhood and of my aunt and uncle, so I’m with Aunt Betty on this one. Plus, the raspberry bushes have been there as long as I can remember, so if anything were to happen to them, it would be super sad.

IMG_2529 (1024x1024) IMG_2490 (768x1024)I was drawn to the old bottles in the barn. Darryl let me take home several, but Aunt Betty made me put one back that she said she didn’t yet have in her collection.

IMG_2549Later she showed me the collection, which she keeps in the kitchen on display. It includes one milk bottle with the farm’s old logo on it. It’s quintessential dairy farm, I think. So retro, so perfect. She said someone saw the bottle at a sale (garage sale, estate sale) and brought it to her. Wish they were still using the same today.

The August List 2015

August got away from me. I was on vacation in upstate New York for half the month, so I’m excused. But now I have a post to write and all I have is spiders. So I’ll start off with that and see where it takes me…

IMG_17961) We’ve had a terrible amount of spiders this summer. All the landscape and plant shop people have confirmed this. We’ve already sprayed twice (and yes SF, it’s safe for kids and animals), but every morning we walk into new webs. This guy posted up on our back gate. As I opened the latch, I disturbed it and actually said, “oh sorry” out loud. I get that they control the bug population (although not doing that great of a job in our garden!), but they give me the creeps.

IMG_2587 (768x1024)2)  This flower popped open, giving us a beautiful surprise. I didn’t know what the blossoms would look like when I planted it. It’s a monarda and one of the plants I got from my next door neighbor, Shirley (don’t ask me about the spots on the leaves. I can’t go there).

3) Speaking of Shirley, I was in her garden at the beginning of the month and spied an eggplant growing. I commented on how nice it looked.

IMG_1799 (1024x946)IMG_1800 (768x1024)You want it? Here. Is what she said and so I had an eggplant. I made eggplant parmesan and it was delicious. Even my husband liked it and he doesn’t like eggplant. I really hope to grow a vegetable garden next year (those darn bugs, though).

I mentioned to someone the other day how it has been hard for me to read people here because everyone is nice. As in cordial, super polite, well-mannered, etc. And so I can’t tell who is actually nice and who is just acting nice. Plucking your only eggplant and handing it to your neighbor without a second thought. That is genuine niceness, people. Take note.

IMG_1744 (932x1024)4)  This is someone’s actual vehicle. As in, not a working truck, but the car that you would drive to the Yacht Club for a day at the pool. God Bless America.

IMG_20315)  Shoutout to our dog, Sam who is the best traveler. Eleven hours in the car and he did not make one peep. Or say that he had to go to the bathroom 20 minutes after we left a rest stop.

IMG_2385 (1024x1024)IMG_2386 (1024x1024)6)  I love barns. I’m obsessed with barns. My dream house is a renovated barn. So of course I loved being back in dairy country for vacation. We drove past this barn whenever we went into town and one day I finally stopped to take a couple photos. I would have taken more, but I was technically trespassing and I’m not a risk-taker. In that sense, anyway.

IMG_2203 (1024x1024)7) While on vacation,we drove to my cousin’s spot on Lake Ontario one afternoon. I do love the quietness of my Dad’s place on Chase Lake, but being on a boat (and jet ski) was so fun, especially for the girls.

Hedge8) Remember how I complained about my yard guys last month? I met with our landscape company and went over what I’m going to start taking care of vs. what they will handle. Hedge trimming now falls under me. I’d never used a hedge trimmer before, but it wasn’t difficult to get the hang of.

However, after about 15 minutes, I felt like my arms were going to fall off! Haha. Good workout. (Also, I realize this photo is hideous. I don’t have a better one, sadly. I’d just gotten back from a run and am wearing a stained maternity shirt (why!?! I kept it because it was “cozy.” I threw it away within minutes of seeing this photo).

IMG_2563 (1024x464)9) I never heard anything back from the Yacht Club about the letter I wrote urging them to implement a recycling program, but I did see this blurb in the latest newsletter. It’s a start.

IMG_1783 (1024x851)10)  We got a new orb. Excuse me, magical orb. The old one we inherited from the previous homeowners was silver and in perfectly good condition, but we (my husband and the kids) decided that we needed a new one because something about old magic vs. new magic so… now we have a blue one.

image via

11) I had our magnolia tree treated for scale. Which are tiny little white bugs that don’t look like bugs but that are definitely bugs. Yucky bugs that wreak havoc on the tree. It was $120. It helped. I think. Yesterday I noticed that one of my lilac bushes was covered (I mean covered) with scale. I’m done spending money on the yard this year (budget is spent and cold weather is coming   soon), so I’m hoping and praying it doesn’t die. It’s my favorite. Please, please, please.

Acorns12) Acorns are already falling. Noooooo! Our neighbors have an oak tree that mostly hangs over our yard, driveway and garage. So plunk, plunk, plunk they go, all day long. When I was out planting the other day, I put a bowl on my head like a hard hat. I wasn’t taking any chances.

Here’s where I say I can’t believe it’s already September, but the truth is that I have been waiting for September for the last couple of weeks. I had the best summer, but I am so ready for school to start and excited for a new season to roll in. Have a great month!