The conventional and unconventional sides of my life.

Last week, my husband, Wakko and I went to upstate New York. We spent four days in the Finger Lakes Wine Country to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary before we headed a few more hours east to spend the weekend with family and celebrate my grandparent’s 60th wedding anniversary!

The first day we flew into Rochester, NY and drove 90 minutes south to Corning, NY. We stayed at an awesome place called The Inn at Gaffer Grill which was right in the Gaffer/downtown district of Corning. The “room” was more like a suite with a hallway that led to a living room/kitchenette area. Sadly, we were only in Corning for one night. I’d love to stay there longer.

The next day we went to the Corning Museum of Glass where we spent the next 5 hours! I am pretty sure Wakko doesn’t care to see another piece of glass in his life! I’ve always been interested in glass blowing and I was able to try it out and make my own glass sculpture!

The picture on the left is a shot of the glassblowing area in the make your own glass studio and on the right is the glass sculpture I made! I’ve always been interested in glass blowing and this experience has prompt me to look up local glass studios to take a class or two.

After we finished at the Corning Museum of Glass, we drove to the bed & breakfast that we stayed at on Seneca Lake. I was exhausted by the time we arrived. We took a little nap and then headed down the road to the Stonecat Cafe for dinner. The Stonecat Cafe uses a lot of organic and regional food in their menu. I was impressed to find such wonderful local food and especially impressed to come across a restaurant in rural NY that not only knows what falafel and quinoa are but has them on their menu! We sat out on the deck which overlooked their organic garden (in the shape of a labyrinth!) as well as grapevines and the waters of Seneca Lake.

On the left: Photo of the Garden at Stonecat Cafe. On the right: View of the Stonecat Cafe Deck from the Garden.

I loved the restaurant so much that Wakko and I decided right then that we would be back the next night for dinner there as well.

This was our appetizer the following night. Local Chevre cheese with organic mixed greens and fresh strawberries. All drizzled with some balsamic vinegar and olive oil and served with their homemade focaccia bread. It was delicious!While staying at Seneca Lake, we toured many wineries. In fact, I toured too many wineries a bit too quickly before lunch on Thursday! We hired a driver/tour guide for 6 hours to take us around to the various wineries. Because there are so many great wineries so close together on Seneca Lake, we visited six of them in the first two hours. I realized that I really needed to slow down my wine tasting. I didn’t see how I was possibly going to last another 4 hours. We took an extended lunch at one of the wineries and then headed over to Cayuga Lake to visit a few more wineries. I was so glad we slowed the pace down. With the long lunch and drive over to the other lake, we visited just three more wineries in the last four hours.

On our final day in the Finger Lakes region, we went to Watkins Glen State Park to hike the gorge. The gorge is about 400 feet deep and was formed by a stream cutting through the rock. There are over 800 steps winding though several waterfalls, cascades and pools as you climb the gorge. The scenery is so beautiful. I would often take a picture in front of me and turn around to look behind me and it was just as beautiful to view where I had just come from! It took us about 90 minutes to hike to the top. I was thankful for the gift/snack shop and restrooms at the top. i munched on a soft pretzel with nacho cheese and drank some water before heading back out of the gorge. The hike back out was only 45 minutes. Here are some of the pictures we took while on our hike.


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