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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Oh, The Places We Go . . . .

On this gorgeous sunny northern New Jersey day,
I've got wanderlust.

Because you never know what you will find
when you slide off the beaten path in this old state.

Last fall, I visited a man whose family has owned and lived on these hillside acres for two-and-a-half centuries.
About 35 minutes from midtown Manhattan, within spitting distance of Route 287.

I drove right past the "Beware of Savage Dog" sign, and bought a nice old desk from him for about $30.
He gifted me with a beautiful and very old large bottle, clear, corked,
with the dregs of some antique brownish liquid in the bottom.
I'm hoping it's water, but I haven't tested.

However, instead of indulging in my wanderlust today,
I need to be a grownup (gasp!), and . . . DUST.

That Old House is sorely neglected, and she's fixing to go all hissy-fit on me
if I don't buckle down and do something about that.
I know.  Bor-ing!
But two weeks ago, on another beautiful day, my friend Emily and I wandered north,
armed with our cameras, because you never know what you'll see.
Like the remains of a barn and silo, through a tangle of trees.

Or an old Abbey, built in 1924, now empty.

A few years ago, it was on schedule to be converted to low-income housing units.

It doesn't seem as if that's going to happen anytime soon.

The building is deserted, but the remaining monks live across the road,
and they still cultivate and sell Christmas trees.
When our girls were very young, we'd bundle them up and
brave the cold to wander the field and chop down our tree each year.  Nice memories.
From the "you never know what you might find" department . . .
Tuesday's bare-bottomed mermaid?  We saw her at an antiques shop in Andover, New Jersey.

Also in Andover, I bought pewter, or pewter-ish, candelabra.

Meaning, one pewter candelabrum.  And another pewter candelabrum.

I looked it up, 'cause I wasn't sure about the correct usage of those terms.
Turns out, one multi-branched candlestick is a candelabrum.

But 2 or more of them, roaming the mean streets together?
They morph into a gang known as candelabra.  You may have seen their graffiti.
Their motorcycle jackets have "Born To Burn" embroidered on the backs.

They are dirty, waxy, and dull, but a little elbow grease will fix just enough of that, so they
will fit right in at That Old House.  Where, after all, dirty and dull is a way of life.

From Andover, we went to Lafayette, where we checked out some more antiques shops.
I don't know why so many of my pictures from that day have an odd blue-ish tint.  I really need to learn how to use my camera.
I just love old household things, like these washtubs.
Seriously, ladies, we should never complain about doing laundry after seeing these.

We had lunch at Lafayette's Millside Cafe,
which is cozied up against the mill race, in amongst all the antiques shops.

This place is a time machine. The tables and chairs are vintage, un-matched.
The "specials" menu is handwritten and copied.

The view from our table: 

I had a tuna melt.

Emily had chicken salad.
They don't have fried foods, and they don't accept credit cards at the Millside Cafe,
but they accept personal checks.  How about that?

No antiques purchases in Lafayette for either of us, but Emily
found a shop that she says her husband would love.
Guy antiques.  Tools, mechanical stuff, ship stuff.  No dishes, feh.
I hope no one was startled by the gi-normous picture of 
That Old House in the header.  I've got to get a current shot,
and figure out how to make it a size that I can live with.
The one, above, is kind of intimidating.
It's like That Old House on steroids.

I hope your Thursday is going swimmingly!  I'm meeting my friend Betsy for supper tonight,
so we can gossip about our children and husbands.  Just positive, good stuff, of course.
(Luckily I remembered our husbands and children can all read.  Pretty much.) -- Cass

What sign?


  1. Wanderlust is going around!!! My favorite thing to do is take my sister, jump in the car and start traveling. Stop at each and every antique store in sight. ALWAYS stop at somewhere cool for lunch like you found. Oh that winding road in the first photo is beautiful. I'm in awe of the former Abby, oh I hope they don't tare it down. You found some fine goodies there. Have a fantastic Thursday.

  2. The floor in that old restaurant stopped me in my tracks - people pay big money for that weathered look! How funny that I, too, an meeting my oldest friend - also Betsy - this weekend to go browse through all the little old shops here in Maryland looking for treasure (and we will surely be talking about our husbands and children too because, well, that's what we do!) Have a wonderful weekend :)

  3. Cass,
    I enjoyed your photos of our great state! But I LOVE the new photo of your house! Have a great rest of the week!

  4. What a beautiful old place. And a yummy lunch you had.

  5. Oh- I love the beautiful old place. I think you need to give us a current picture of That Old without Christmas lights. I love your candle thingys---candlewhaties? Some days it is just fun to take off and roam the roads, isn't it? Looks like you had a great day of it. xo Diana ps. Methinks you are telling a little lie about things being dim and dirty at That Old House!;>)

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  7. The first photo took me about 49 years back in time, when I was a child in New Jersey. Thanks for the lovely trip! (first comment deleted due to human error!) **blows kisses** Deborah

  8. What a beautiful old building. Hope you had a wonderful visit with your friend. Have a great weekend.


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