Fall Festivities - Pumpkin Carving and Halloween

Another Fall season has arrived and with it Halloween and pumpkins, at least so far.  About a week ago I invited my nephew over to carve some pumpkins and Rebecca got pretty excited as well.  So, on a Saturday morning, after one of his hockey games, we picked up 2 pumpkins and some pizzas.  The pizzas were for lunch.  I was on scooping duty and got to help clean out the pumpkins.  Rebecca later baked the seeds for a tasty treat.  In addition to pumpkin carving we also had a bit of Halloween fun.

Although I am not a big fan of Halloween, we also found ourselves at 2 Halloween parties this year.  One happened by chance as we were out and about with my father.  While we didn't have costumes we did end up with wigs.  The second one was with some buddies and we ended up at Arooga's for a costume contest.  We didn't win, that's for sure, but I had a great time.  Also learned a new game that night...  Anyway, here are some of the photos.

(Pumpkin guts)

(More guts at the seeds that were later toasted)

(After they were all cleaned out it was time to start carving...)

(Here is my little buddy carving away)

(Rebecca took a much more artistic approach and hers took a bit longer to complete)

(The 2 carvers at work)

(Rebecca was pretty focused)

(Artsy shot for the day)

(My nephew had 2 or 3 faces on his pumpkin, I can't quite remember...)

(Rebecca still carving away)

(I will let you guess who carved which pumpkin)

(The cool thing was as you rotated my nephew's you saw a new face each time)

(My dad wanted to photo bomb)

(And we changed)

(Sitting around the campfire with Jimmy)

(Rebecca said it was a good look and I should grow my hair out)

(And we switched again)

(And again)

(And here is Rebecca in her Man U onesie)

(And this was colorful slash)


Shady Maple Smorgasbord

We made our way down to Shady Maple in East Earl (Amish Country) with Mimi and Pop Pop.  Rebecca had heard a lot about the smorgasbord - everyone in the family had an opinion or a story to tell.  There's a ton of food and a ton of good food.  And then some more food.

Rebecca is a vegetarian and here is the list of food she ate:

Mac and cheese
Potato pancakes
Apple fritter
Fried mushrooms
Broccoli w cheese
Cooked carrots
Gourmet raspberry bread
Dried corn
Baked yam w cinnamon and brown sugar
Baked haddock
Raspberry mousse with pineapple
Peach frozen yogurt w maraschino cherries and coconut
Baked apple

I ended up eating even more with all of the meat options.  Another reason we went down was because Pop Pop wanted to see a bit of Amish country before losing his eyesight.  So, we killed 2 birds with 1 stone, ate a lot of food and got to see a bit of Amish country.  The food was tasty, unfortunately we didn't get to see as much of Amish country as we would have liked.  Alas, here a just a few photos from the trip.  

(As you walk in there are 3-D art pieces.  It's difficult to tell here but...)

(Perhaps here you can get a sense of the dimensions)

(Hard to see to the other end but this entire hallway had 2 rows of food and each station had 10 to 12 items plus there are grills)

(The panoramic view messed up a few features but the building itself is huge)

(We had the server take a photo of us)

(Rebecca afterwards)

(We did it!!!)

(There is also a Shady Maple market/grocery store next door and here are just a few of the pies...)

(And Mimi checking out the pies)

(Rebecca hopped in a buggy)

(And for some reason there is a giant Amish guy as well...)

(My turn in the buggy)

(Rebecca going for the high five...)

(And then I was going for the high five...)


Tubing Down the Yellow Breeches...

A few weeks ago my cousin Nick, an avid tuber, invited Rebecca and I to go tubing down the Yellow Breeches. Unfortunately, we were unable to go that day but did decide to meet up later in the week. We met Nick at his apartment and then dropped one car off and began our tubing trip on the Yellow Breeches at Messiah college. There was a large parking lot next to the sports fields at Messiah college and although I am not 100% certain I believe we ended the tubing trip at the Lower Allen Community Park. Then again, it may have been somewhere else. All in all it was a few hours of tubing and taking in nature.  Anyway, here are a few photos from the tubing trip!

(Right before we left for the tubing trip...)

(Nick had a special pump to blow up the tubes using his car)

(Here we are getting ready to embark)

(Rebecca was happy)

(Then she wanted to get a photo of me)

(And we are on the water)

(It was a bit chilly but the sun definitely helped)

(Angel rays on an angel...)

(Just relaxing as we tubed down the creek)

(Nick and his lady friend as they made their way down the creek)


AT Weekend Hike around Duncannon, PA

A few weeks ago we hit the AT again for another few days of camping.  We were supposed to go for 3 days and 2 nights but due to a few blisters we had to cut it short.  There was a nice little campsite a few miles in and we spent the night there with a great fire.  The next morning we woke up and hiked across the bridge into Duncannon, taking a stroll down main street.  

We were just about to head up Hawk Mountain to see if we could find the camping site but decided after a few minutes it was a bad idea.  So, we turned around, walked back through Duncannon, passing the Doyle Hotel, and made our way back to the car.  The trip was a great time and we had a lot of fun!  Enjoy the photos from our camping excursion!  

(Passed this guy on our way to the campsite)

(Photo op)

(Sometimes it amazes me how great a view a person can have after only a few hours of walking.  I think that is part of the reason I enjoy hiking so much - the views.)

(After we set up camp we headed up the stove and had a bit to eat and made some hot coffee)

(Then we played some cribbage)

(Fire time and Rebecca is showing off our tasty treats)

(Had to make sure I had my head lamp on for when it got dark outside)

(Rebecca got an artsy shot of the smoke coming off the fire)

(I warmed myself up by the fire)

(We had a nice little fire going)

(Shot in the tent before we hit the sack)

(Rebecca making some coffee the next morning)

(Definitely on the Appalachian Trail)  

(Hey oh - Maine to Georgia)

(Rebecca had to take her shoes off...)

(View as we crossed the river)

(Me walking across the bridge)

(Stopped to get some water and take in the view)

(Rebecca was doing a bit of blister work)

(Hey!  Look at that Hiker in front of the Doyle Hotel)

(Entrance to the Doyle Hotel)

(Passed this as we made our way down North Market Street - the Old Sled Works)

(Perry County Hilton)