But this year, Julie Lochner Riber was determined and organized. She and Wes were coming to Rochester from Colorado so that Wes and Ricky Lochner could immediately head to Canada. Julie saw that weekend as a golden opportunity to hang out with my mother (Aunt CB). So she planned a Girls Road Trip to visit far-flung relatives and I decided to come from San Francisco to join them.
We started out Friday morning by driving to Waterloo to visit Uncle Harold. It was so great to see him! He's tethered to an oxygen machine but he was still his old hilarious self, making droll observations and coming up with crazy phrases.
|Aunt CB and Uncle Harold|
|Uncle Harold and Bimbo|
She was in the midst of cooking capellini with asparagus, bacon and zucchini spiced with fresh herbs from her garden, along with a salad and the roasted red peppers that I had "hinted" I loved from a previous visit. Julie, also a great cook, joined in immediately. I, not a great cook, was happy being the photographer. And my mother launched into family history stories. Dorothy liberally poured the wine and, as my mother says, "We like to cook with wine, and sometimes we even pour some into the food."
|Julie Lochner Riber|
|Dorothy and Aunt CB|
We stayed with Dorothy both Friday and Saturday nights. What a wonderful house she has! Beautiful little Victorian touches and reminiscent in so many ways of what we all love about Center Lisle.
Oh, the flowers! Everywhere we drove over hill and dale in Dor's corner of the country there were masses of pink rhododendrons at just their perfect peak. Even the intermittent rain all weekend only improved them, adding raindrops to the petals that glistened ever brighter. Wild pink, white and purple phlox edged along all the woods and tiny forget-me-nots were strewn like blue dew drops throughout the meadows. I slept in Dorothy's upstairs back bedroom with the windows open so that I could hear the creek all night that runs behind her house.
On Saturday, Dorothy and Julie herbed and seared a pork roast, then set it to slow-cook in the oven while we went into Margaretville to Dorothy's kitchen store. We entered with the intention of just looking around and enjoying the store, and left with big bags of way more kitchen gadgets than we ever knew we needed. I love Dorothy's store. I think she channels Aunt Lil's old general store. Dor's is not quite as crammed with stuff and gizmos as Lil's was, it's true, but it's still best reconnoitered with the owner as the guide.
|Welcome to Dorothy's Home Goods of Margaretville!|
|Aunt CB and Julie Shopping at Dorothy's Store|
We got back in time for Dor and Mom to lay out piles of photographs and cards on the dining room table and happily sort through them for hours. Meanwhile, Julie and Dor were adding roasting vegetables to the pork roast and laying out platters of appetizers. It was lush, I tell you. Dorothy's sweetheart, Jim, joined us for dinner and then braved taking pictures of us on her front porch afterwards. To Julie, it was reminiscent of pictures from when we were kids, sitting on the front steps of whatever family house we were at together, making goofy faces. What a great time we had together!
|Aunt CB, Dorothy, Sue, Julie|
|Dorothy, Julie, Susan|
|Hyde Hall, near Cooperstown, New York|
|Dining Room and Men's Parlor, with Vapor-Light Chandeliers|
|Jon Maney before Hyde Hall's Side Portico|
|3-Story Spiral Staircase at Hyde Hall|
|Dorothy, Aunt CB, Jon, Julie, Susan|
What a blast we all had together! I had picked up a card with a picture of "Ladies On Tour" and we ended up using it for a record of the trip - listing our dinners and adventures, with signatures from everyone along the way. I hadn't gotten it started until after we got to Dorothy's, but after we got home, we went back to Uncle Harold's a few days later just so we could make sure to get his signature on our trip record as well - it was that important. We decided a Girls Road Trip will have to become a new tradition now. There are so many fascinating people in our family to visit!
To visit the website for Dorothy's store, Home Goods of Margaretville, click here.
To visit the Hyde Hall website, click here.