June is bustin’ out all over! It’s been one string of blooms to another, wisteria to rhododendron, phlox to peonies to clematis. Here in the Poconos of Northeastern Pennsylvania the weather has taken its good old time to warm up and brighten up with sunshine. That hasn’t stopped the outside chores. Around the inn we have been planting flowers and pulling weeds, mowing grass and fixing deer fences. Personally, I like sprucing up the yard and being outdoors, cloudy days and a bit of drizzle can’t stop me. On the other hand, wearing fleece jackets or full out downpours does get depressing after a string of days of that kind of weather. All that has changed, summer is almost here and it’s time to get away for a day or two (or three or four) of pure relaxation. Let our gardens and wildlife refresh and replenish your spirits. Enjoy our satiny soft sheets on pillow comfort mattresses. Grab a good book, find a comfy chair inside or out, forget the phone and don’t lift a finger. Time for that getaway!
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Now, this Second Day of February, Two Thousand and Seventeen, the One Hundred and Thirty First Annual Trek of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club….
Punxsutawney Phil, the Seer of Seers, Prognosticator of All Prognosticators, was awakened from his burrow to the cheers of his thousands of faithful followers….
And, of course, he saw his shadow predicting six more weeks of winter. Are you about as ready as I am to strangle the little rascal? First, we get nailed with “The Blizzard of 2017” and 30 inches of snow, and now four days later, insult to injury, I’m looking out my window watching it snow some more. The Spring equinox arrives Monday!! I was watching my daffodils poke their heads through the ground, now it will be weeks for this to melt. So not to get too depressed, I thought I’d share some pictures from the Philadelphia flower show and imagine the Spring to come.
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I often wonder how to answer the question when asked, “Can you see the mountains from your B&B?” Is this person expecting to look out every window and see snow -capped peaks like in the Rockies? Perhaps they feel like they will be surrounded by craggy rocks to climb and all the other land is a flat plane with houses looking into other house windows? How do you explain that the Pocono Mountains are an experience?
First the Pocono Mountains are modest in elevation, the point highest is just under 2,700 feet. But there are highs and valleys, and hills and dips. Now it is the summer season, as one drives the roads, you are surrounded by green. The trees are green, and there are many, many trees, abundant, tall, branching and filling the view. The grasses and plants that stretch into the woods are green and dotted with wonderful colorful wildflowers. In the Northern Pocono region the roads wind up and down the hills and houses are amply spaced on several acres of ground. Farms, with fields of green hay are mixed into the landscape and where people have chosen to live now or long ago, trees have been removed leaving beautiful views of mountain ridges in the distance, dark blue, continuous along the horizon.
The mountains have many streams, and creeks that flow over rocks and tumble along through the trees making small rapids and waterfalls. Eventually these streams wind their way to the small rivers that fill the Delaware River on the Eastern edge of the Poconos. They make wonderful places to take a picnic lunch or a fishing rod. The landscape of the Northern Poconos is dotted with small ponds and pristine lakes, wonderful places to “throw in a line”. The water provides sources for wildlife, the greens for food, and the trees for shelter. Deer, squirrels, groundhogs, raccoons, opossums, chipmunks all find the wooded rolling and sloping terrain dotted with human population to be a comfortable home.
The Northern Poconos have small towns with quaint stores and friendly restaurants. People say “hi” on the streets and cars stop to let pedestrians cross. Honesdale, the county seat of Wayne County, has special events on their Main Street with local craft vendors throughout the year. Here’s America as it was, where there is free entertainment in the park, country fairs, and pride in their history. You can even help the townsfolk welcome Santa for the season with a parade and singing in the park. Hawley, another small Americana town located in Pike County also hosts several special events and has an indoor local marketplace of specialty items and local goods.
Visiting the Northern Poconos is not the tourist trap kind of place. Take a train ride through the country side and notice more of this relaxing pace of life in the mountains. Take a beautiful drive along our wooded roads, snap a picture of a deer, or capture the view over the clearing. It’s an experience. Wake up relaxed, take a walk in the woods, sit by a stream and listen to the birds. Unwind, Rejuvenate!
Spring is coming, and this year we agree. The temperatures have been mild and the little bits of snow we’ve had are almost invisible. Gardens are starting to spring to life with early bulbs pushing through the surface. What a wonderful time of the year to plan a get away! Really, it’s a time to plan a group away. Girl friends can have a blast just being together, shopping, eating out (not cooking for the family) and what better way to enjoy this respite but to stay a weekend at a Bed and Breakfast? How about a yoga group? Maybe quilters, book clubs, or card players? Men, you are not excluded, plan a fishing trip for trout in the stocked Dyberry Creek, or the Delaware or Equinunk Rivers. Maybe a plan a group for a competitive disc golf match at Prompton State Park. Couples, what fun can your group have staying together, taking up the whole Bed and Breakfast? You might take in a concert or check out the Irving Cliff Brewing, a great new microbrew in the neighborhood. The James Manning House is your perfect spot to enjoy comfortable rooms, relaxing together, great fellowship and wonderful breakfasts. When your group takes over the house, we’ll work to accommodate all of your needs and make it a memorable experience.
Women. We really hold so much together, ourselves, our families, our households, our jobs, our volunteer groups, etc. etc. Our lives are frantic, hectic, frustrating, loving, joyful, worrisome and downright exhausting! Time to get away!
Taking a vacation with the family is very nice, it can be relaxing, but most of the time we’re busy making memories with our loved ones and want that trip to be grand, and special. We can’t let our guard down and need to keep it together while worrying that everything will be just right and everyone will stay safe. Taking a trip with girlfriends is a whole different event.
Enjoying a getaway with girlfriends includes talking, and eating, thinking about our own needs, and talking. Did I mention talking? Girlfriends share so much of themselves when they get away. Girlfriends together share thoughts about the family and hash out ideas about the kids, the pets, the husbands, and how they dealt with a coworker. Girlfriends can giggle about a dress with green and pink polka dots when shopping, or notice that they like a pillow fabric, and girlfriends can discuss why they don’t like the same shoes. It’s all about sharing ideas, understanding and compassion for one another. Girlfriends on getaways don’t compete, they listen.
Girlfriends away will shop, and give honest opinions of necklines, and hemlines, and give ideas of coordinating accessories. Girlfriends will treasure hunt, they’ll look in the gift shop, and in the second hand shop. They’ll understand the need for checking every rack or shelf for just the right treasure. Girlfriends never say they’ll “wait outside on the bench”, so the others will feel they can only look for five minutes.
Girlfriends like to eat. They will try the French restaurant or tapas bar, a quiche & tea buffet. They’ll take their time to chat over a glass of wine. It’s not the food, it’s the experience, the conversation and most of all the social bonding while eating.
Once girlfriends are back at home, after a thousand topics were discussed, their minds are clear. Relaxed, de-stressed a woman can see the solution to that problem of how to answer a teen why they can’t attend the party, or how to get more storage in the laundry room, which color drapes go in the newly painted living room, etc. Start a new tradition. Girlfriends need to get away, plan your getaway today!