Ohiopyle Visitors Center and Meadow Run

Yesterday we stopped by the new Visitors Center at Ohiopyle State Park.  The boys and I had been earlier in the summer but this was the first time for Ryan.  The park did a really did a great job with the building and surrounding area.  Yesterday was quite a hot day, and it was nice to detour inside for a few minutes to get some water, cool off, and check out the exhibits and gorgeous view of the falls.  After the Visitor’s Center, we walked over to Meadow Run and hiked up the stream.  The water was fairly low, so this time boys opted to skip on sliding down the natural waterslides.  Instead we opted to keep hiking, alternating between boulder scrambling along the edges of the stream and hiking on the path through the woods.  It was a gorgeous walk and we had a such a great time that we didn’t get home until evening.  Despite the late hour, Ryan started up the grill to make a batch of his famous Double Smoked Chili.  We finally ate around 9:30, and it was worth the wait!



Swallow Falls, Maryland

Last Sunday we had a family outing to Swallow Falls State Park in Maryland.  All the kids had a great time hiking around the woods on a trail that took us first to the Muddy Creek waterfall, then along Muddy Creek to where it meets theYoughiogheny River,  and finally up the Yough to Swallow Falls.  The kids enjoyed swimming in the hole at the base of the waterfall, and even ducking under the water to explore the room behind the falls.  After our hike, we drove north,  following the Youghiogheny to Friendsville, Maryland to eat dinner at the fabulous Riverside Hotel.  The ingredients for their delicious salads are grown right in the backyard of the hotel, and we all ate massive amounts of it, along with their delicious bread, soup and desserts.  Ryan had a fresh out of the oven molasses cookie that was absolutely amazing!


We have a working sauna! It still needs some more boards on the wall, some trim work, and a thing here or there, BUT….it’s working. Oliver was excited to be the first official user after his bath this evening. He reports that it is hot. So there you have it. Official confirmation. The sauna…..is hot.


On the Road Again…..

Car full of stuff that’s going to spend the next 3 years in PA. After being left behind when we last piled into the car for our trip to Pittsburgh (and then on to China), the dogs stood at the front door waiting to be let out, making it quite clear that they weren’t missing this trip.


Igor Bars

I had never heard of Igor Bars before Eli requested I make them. But if there is one thing I am always game for, it’s trying out a new recipe. So I made them..the chocolate chip cookie layer, followed by the caramel layer, topped with the Rice Krispie treat layer and finally finished with melted chocolate and M&Ms (red, white and blue, natch…it’s almost the 4th). They are sickeningly sweet, feel like a lead weight in your stomach, yet so so delicious. Picture below.