Thursday, November 11, 2010

Upstate New York

While I've been crying woe is me here and there (and everywhere) that Kevin works the longest hours, we did take some time in the past couple of months to enjoy Hudson Valley (in upstate New York) on a few day trips.  The Hudson Valley is known for its gorgeous foliage in the autumn, and after years of living here, we wanted to take advantage.

On the first trip we went apple-picking, and the second we did a hike on Bear Mountain

Trip Numero Uno

Before going to the apple orchard, we dropped by Blue Hill at Stone Barns (basically this sustainable, fancy farm/restaurant built on Rockefeller land) to grab a bite to eat at the cafe.

And meet some turkeys.

Do they look fat enough yet for Thanksgiving?  Perhaps not.  We offered them some tasty prey to help remedy the situation.

Bunni and Rikki were neither amused nor fooled, and stayed back.  Rikki yapped her little head off from a safe distance.

Then we headed west to Warwick to pick apples. Lotsa lotsa apples.

View of some of the trees and surrounding hills.

There was this artificial lake that afforded some nice views.  The lake made me think of this episode from Tales from the Crypt where teenagers are sucked into the pond by a black blob.  Some of them try to find refuge on the floating dock thingy (like at the right of this picture), but they die anyway.

Happy picking. 

We weren't the only ones having a good time.

She can't even hold her tongue in her mouth.

Nothing like happy pugs.  After seeing our pictures from this trip, my mom got upset at Kevin for not taking enough pictures of her beautiful daughter, who is too good for Kevin.

Trip Numero Dos

We had so much fun on our first trip (despite there being no photographic evidence that I was even present), that we returned shortly afterwards to hike on Bear Mountain.  This is unusual for me. I don't particularly like being away from my TV and refrigerator and an ice cream store.

There was a little Oktoberfest and we partook of the sausage, kraut, beets and German potato salad.  Good to fortify with 10x more calories than we would expend on the 2-hour hike.

There were some beautiful views, even before we started the hike.

Then we started.

Shortly after this picture, the path veered rather sharply up towards the sky, at approximately a 70 degree angle. I'm not joking.  I thought my thighs were turning to acid and that I was going to pass out.  Ne'er you mind that a 70-year old woman booked it past me, muttering something about "slowpoke" as she shoved me aside.

But it was worth it in the end for some really wonderful views.

Look, it's the tall white man and his little Asian bride!

After we hustled back down the mountain, we figured we deserved some good grub. And good grub we got, in the form of soondubu jjigae at So Kong Dong in Fort Lee, NJ.  I'd tell you in detail about the meal, but Serena over at Big Apple Nosh gave a great rundown of the restaurant and you must be tired of me at this point.  But still, a few pictures.

There was even a Trip Numero Tres with my friends to enjoy the Halloween events of Sleepy Hollow, but the pictures bite the big one so I'll just say it was lovely and awesome, especially to have some girl-time.

How's everyone's autumn going?


  1. We took Perri apple picking and it was the most fun thing EVER! These photos make me sad that fall is almost over, I wanted to go hiking but never made it!

  2. YESSSS So Kong Dong. I'm jealous. Even though I'm going home in a few weeks. Where did you go apple picking? We usually go to Masker's which I think is also in Warwick.

  3. SO KONG DONG! SO KONG DONG! soontofu! yeye!

    wait a minute. did the pugs get to partake of some soontofu?

  4. The pugs (and you and Kevin) look like they had a lovely time! The tongue hang out is a sure sign of that. Sounds like a day of good eats as well!

  5. I have to say, that picture of Kevin with the pugs is awesome. They are so so happy!

    Of course the one with you in it is better. ;)

  6. What fun weekend trips! I love Soondubu Jigae. LOVE IT!! I've never been apple picking. I will have to make Jackson take me places like this. :)

  7. hey, Mina, I'm not sure how else to reach you, and I just wanted to let you know that you won a drawing on my blog for a cookbook. Assuming you want the prize, shoot me an email at justin @ and I'll get the details. I like this post by the way. I go to So Kong Dong both in Fort Lee and particularly in Palisades Park. Great places. I'm pretty sure they're exactly the same with the same owners, but if you ask Koreans in the area, they'll tell you the one in Palisades Park is even better, and then you can stop by the amazing H-mart too. Of course you really need a car to get there, either way.

  8. The trips look like so much fun!! Also, I think it's hilarious that you brought up Tales from the crypt. I've totally seen that one! Stupid teens!

  9. runrgrl: isn't it the best thing watching your dog romping around in the orchard? love it!

    bigapplenosh: um, it's been a few weeks and i can't even remember the damn name of the orchard. but there are a ton up there. and yeesss, so kong dong...

    sashacleo: very articulate of you.

    lobster: isn't that little peek of tongue adorable?

    jessica: my mom would agree with your second statement.

    terri: you and jackson should definitely try it next year! it's just nice to get out of the city.

    justin: WOOHOO i won!!! thank you!

    mintedlife: hahaha i love that you remember that episode! i can't believe it!