Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Vote for Kiel School's IdeaPaint Project! Now!!

Vote for Kiel School's IdeaPaint Project! Now!!
Dear Readers,

On behalf on Kinnelon's Kiel school, and more specifically Annika Levitt, Kiel school first grade teacher, I have a special request: please vote for her class' entry into the IdeaPaint 360 Makeover Contest for 2011 which ends this Sunday, December 4th.

IdeaPaint is a white board paint that transforms spaces into creative, collaborative learning environments. I first came across it in 2009 when I virtually attended a trade show taking place in Chicago and IdeaPaint was taking drawing requests via Twitter [see I attended NeoCon virtually].

Kiel School's IdeaPaint Project has made it to the final round and is one of the top 10 finalists. Annika's first grade class needs all of us to help make the Kiel School Project be the winner. The prize: a “makeover” from IdeaPaint which will maximize space, transforming the walls and other surfaces into whiteboards! Will you help?

Here's how:

Click on IdeaPaint 360 Vote where you will notice all 10 finalist video entries.

The first entry is Kiel School's. Do watch it!  It is very clever and includes the first graders who explain why the makeover is so important.

Then, vote!  You can vote once per day until Sunday, Dec. 4th until 11:59 pm. If you have different e-mail addresses, use them.

Please pass this message and ask family and friends to vote.

Thank you!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Washington Apple Martini: Smoke Rise Inn Recipe

I was reminiscing about fresh apples and apple-picking with our dentist, Paul Leary last week. In particular, I was reliving the amazing Fuji apples Ted and I had picked, at the Warwick Winery, that were so fresh they foamed when we bit into them...

We missed apple-picking season this year. However, based on this Washington Apple Martini recipe from the Smoke Rise Inn, there's possibly a way to relive those memories...

Washington Apple Martini from the Smoke Rise Inn

If you are looking to make an easy, sophisticated cocktail then this one is for you. This is certainly becoming the new favorite cocktail at all the chic Martini bars. It is so easy, and very versatile. Did I mention DELICIOUS? It tastes just like a crisp Washington apple with a kickoff course!

2 oz Crown Royal
2 oz Apple Pucker
1 oz Cranberry Juice

Rim the glass with a mixture of two part sugar, one part cinnamon. Garnished with a slice of Washington Red Apple.

Let me know what you think of this recipe and whether it brings back good apple-picking memories.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Fosterfields Living Farm Hike 12/3/11: Morris County Park Commission

Exciting Morris County Park Commission (MCPC) hiking news! On December 3rd, 2011, a 'regular' monthly hike takes place at Fosterfields Living Farm.

It will also include an End of Year Get-Together! Here are details.

1. Please contact Tom Edmunds if you intend to participate in the hike.

2. Starting time: 9am on Saturday 12/3/11

3. Hike length: 3 to 5 miles, including a portion of the Patriot's Path. [Here are details from our February 2010 hike at Fosterfields.] Tom is promising perfect conditions!

4. Meeting place: Fosterfields Visitor Center on Kahdena Road, Morris Township. Fosterfields can be reached from Morristown by taking route C 124 (Mendham Rd) West 1.5 miles and turn right on Kahdena Rd (after passing the Burnham Park swimming pool). You can Google for directions to 73 Kahdena Rd Morris Township, NJ.

5. If you'd like to be involved in the End of Year Get-Together after the hike, Janet is coordinating a “bring your favorite goodie”. Simply email her at As Tom says, "This is purely voluntary so there’s no pressure to make that Fruit Cake with 18 different ingredients."

We can't wait to see Tom Edmunds, Russ Nee and Janet McMillan again and take part in another MCPC hike. It's been too long! We hope to see you there, too!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving 2011!

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

What do you have planned for the day?

What about your Thanksgiving feast?

Which are your favorite dishes, without which the holiday wouldn't quite be right?

What special traditions do you have for the holiday?

Ted's family liked to do family walks between the main course and desert.

My sister makes a really yummy fresh cranberry relish. It's a great addition to turkey sandwiches the next day.

For Emma, Thanksgiving sets the stage for her birthday in a few days...

What makes your Thanksgiving special?

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and thanks for being part of the Smoke Rise & Kinnelon Blog!


Ted, Emma and

Image credit: Emma

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Treehouse Thoughts - Inspired by OLM's 50th Anniversary Picnic

I took this photo of kids in trees on 9/11/11 when Our Lady of the Magnificat held its 50th Anniversary Mass and Parish Picnic. Sure enough, Emma made it up there to eat lunch and has since been fervently wishing for a treehouse or, at least, a climbable tree worthy of treehouse thoughts.

Sadly, we have none in our immediate vicinity. However, it did get us talking about tree houses - including real albeit extreme tree houses and ones from stories such as Swiss Family Robinson and Tarzan.

Did you climb trees as a kid?

Did you have a tree house? Did you build it yourself?

Which were your favorite stories with treehouses?

I'd love to hear...

Pictures are welcome, too! :-)

Getting back to OLM's 50th Anniversary Parish Picnic - given that Cornie Hubner mentioned magnificent copper beech trees in his Didja Know story about Our Lady of the Magnificat, I thought you might enjoy these photos of the grounds behind the Our Lady of the Magnificat Chapel.

Drive behind Chapel leading down toward parish buildings.

Picnic tables around the trees

Monsignor Carroll making preparations for Mass.

Warming up the choir. Emma is in the front row, in front
of Michael Pierce's keyboard

OLM Parish Picnic in Full Swing!

Another view of the trees and the Picnic

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wegmans, Wegmans, Wegmans ... Please!!!

Galeries Lafayette Paris -- Not Wegmans
Would you like to have a food store nearby, that carried a fantastic array of ethnic and gourmet items, priced them as if the store were a BJ's or Costco, had a prepared food aisle out of a Paris store such as Galeries Lafayette Gourmet, a liquor store that offered excellent wines, really excellent, including Spanish Cava, NZ Sauvignon Blanc, Rioja, and more, at $6 a bottle? And much more, including all of the regular grocery store items priced at well below regular grocery store prices? Geez! I would like to have that nearby, too! And we do have such a store, just not very nearby. Wegmans in Bridgewater, about 45 minutes away, down I287, is an amazing place, that inspires, excites, and, well, makes me sad ... that it's not closer.

Voila! They Are the Same! No?  Wegmans Bridgewater

Galeries Lafayette Gourmet in Paris with Tasting Bars for Sampling

Recently we made the trip, and while I am not willing to make that trip every week, I expect we (yes, I mean we) will go every couple of months or so.

Wegman's Main Prepared Food Aisle with Some Sampling Stations --
 View From 2nd Story Cafe Section

We were very entertained, the whole family. There is the spectacle of unusual and unexpected food, such as Broccoli Romanesco, think fractal green cauliflower, and not only great Sushi, unlike regular stale supermarket sushi, but sushi ingredients for making your own, a fabulous pastry and bakery section, and enormous fresh fish section with more varieties than King's or even Corrado's. Plus there is the interest in watching food being freshly prepared -- veggies being freshly cut and packaged at a station above the veggie display case, cheeses being cut and packaged at the cheese counter, and so on.

Broccoli Romanesco -- Green Fractal Cauliflower

Wegmans Prepared Food Aisle -- One End -- Note Tables on 2nd Level Overlooking

Lest you think I am kidding about the prices of staples, 1 Gal. of Skimmed milk was $2.69, exactly the same price as BJ's, and a couple of dollars per gallon less than Pathmark or Stop and Shop. Colombian Coffee was about the same price as BJ's as well. And a lot below that of Pathmark or Stop and Shop.

There is an element of Trader Joe's as well, but of course on a grand scale -- packages of frozen, portion-wrapped Atlantic Salmon (and other types of fish) in 3 lb bags for $6 per lb, and portion wrapped packages of prepared veggies ready to cook, high-quality and unusual ethnic and organic foods ...

We ourselves tried the sushi, which was excellent, the lemon custard tarte, and apple galette from the bakery, which were excellent as well. We bought several cases of wine, and, though we did not recognize some of the names, all were very good, and, well, at 6 bucks a bottle, there wasn't much of a risk.

Add to all of the rest a very friendly and instantly helpful staff and cashier, and I am almost suspicious that it's too good to be true. For goodness sake, when you buy wine, it's packaged into a reusable 6 bottle carry bag, gratis!

Handled Wine Totes, Apple Galette, Lemon Tarte, et al
It's an interesting concept and business model -- more than entertaining enough to be a destination by itself, a great place to eat, with a cafe section overlooking the main food aisle for great people watching, warehouse prices, a full service grocery store, unusual and high quality foods, high-level prepared foods and bakery goods ... is there no downside?

Well, the only one I can think of is distance.

If you haven't been to Wegmans, and the description interests you, go.

You won't be disappointed.


PS: I noticed the Spanish Cava (Sparkling Wine) we had purchased at Wegmans for $6 was available at Roserne for $13.90.

PPS: Wegmans has a blog. You can find Wegmans on Twitter as well as a Wegmans iPhone app. You might also enjoy First taste of the Wegmans experience -

PPPS: Misc Photos we took

Looking back toward entrance. Shortly thereafter we had to put 
the camera away.

Clean Bathrooms! Notice the clever stepstool.

More Galeries Wegmans

Specials Posted As You Enter. You'll find similar
signage throughout the store and specific to the 
product category.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Smoke Rise East Gate

The Smoke Rise East GateKim Vawter's article about Smoke Rise Relic: Car Badge generated comments from Jim Rohrer and Herb Fisher about the Smoke Rise East Gate and the car badge.

Jim Rohrer wrote:

Ah yes, the car badge. Growing up in Smoke Rise in the 50s and 60s I remember them well. Wish I still had one.

The East Gate was the main gate for many years. There was a family who lived there and they were responsible for operating the gate 24/7. 

I don't think that lasted very long before the club hired shift workers to operate the gate. Many of those workers were SR residents (college kids, etc.- myself included).

At the time, there was only one road, very narrow, entering and exiting the East Gate. Also the gate was operated by turning a large wheel almost like a sailing vessel. It took some real muscle to open and close the gate. It wasn't always electric operated.

Not sure when the North Gate was built but I do remember the Sales office was there for the SR Club. 

Many men commuted to NYC by bus. They parked in the parking lot on the hill on the right as you exit the North Gate. Is the lot still there?
Welcome to Smoke Rise
Herb Fisher said,

Yes, I remember the "Badge" as Kim calls it. Actually, if my memory serves me correctly, that would be a 2nd generation badge.

I remember in 1960 or so my dad traded the 57 auto for a brand new one. He was very angry with himself after several months, because he forgot to take the SR "badge" off that trade in.

The "badge(s)" were the equivalent of today's SR sticker. It was attached thru the front grill. Honored at either gate, you got one.... you live in the RISE.

Second, he was fuming because the originals were a machine stamped disk of metal, the letters, the Chapel, etc were raised then hand painted. They were actual works of art. A metal threaded rod was centered welded to the rear of the disk. Rod was then inserted thru the grill and secured with a large washer and wing nut from the inside of the engine compartment/grill. Remember EVERYTHING was metal back then, not cheapo plastic.

I know I do not have one of those. I wish I could find a picture of one of Herb's early Cadillacs with a frontal view. It would clearly be displayed.

Thank you, Jim and Herb, for sharing these great details!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Save 11/12/11 Saturday for The Ramstein Open House, SR Fresh Hot Sauce

Here is a reminder for this weekend’s Ramstein Beer Open House and Tour, this Saturday, Nov 12. Directions are at the website.

There will be 2 tour and tasting sessions, at 2 PM and 3:45 PM. 

Ramstein will introduce this year's Winter Wheat Doppelbock.

Beers on tap - Winter Wheat Doppelbock,  Amber Lager, and Double Platinum Blonde.

1  and 2 liter growlers will be in stock

And SR Fresh Hot Sauce will be there with the Fresh Cayenne-Cherry PepperHabanero Gold, and XXXXTra Hot Habanero Hot Sauce. We will have Cayenne-Fresno in 2 Heat levels, Mild and Wild, and also our new Caribbean Hot Sauce, and brand new Jalapeno Poblano (our first green pepper saucealong with our Spicy Aioli in 16 oz jars -- that's Hot and Spicy Mayo for those of you scratching your heads. Come try them! And buy them!

You Hot Sauce people can check out the SR Fresh Hot Sauce Website, where the sauces are explained and sold. Check out the Fresh Hot Sauce Blog as well.

As usual, there will be a tour and explanation of the brewing process by Greg Zaccardi, the owner. [See previous post about Ramstein Beer with videos for a primer.]

See you there!

Ted and Christine and Emma

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

3 Upcoming Kinnelon Library Programs, on Teddy Roosevelt's Life and Times, Reliving the Life of a 2500 Year Old Biblical Town, Tom Doyle on Guitar with Vocals by Sandy Cory

Sunday, 13 November 2011 @ 3pm

Theodore Roosevelt: His Life and Times as Seen Through Political Cartoons, Postcards, and Pictures of the Period

This lecture, music, and slide presentation covers the turbulent and exciting life of Theodore Roosevelt, America's 26th president. Stories about other public figures of the times are also part of the program.

Please call Kinnelon Library to sign up 973 838 1321 ________________________________________________________________________

Tuesday, 15 November 2011 @ 7pm 

 "Reliving Biblical Times: A View from Tel Burna Where Past and Present Meet" 

 Presented by Debi Weisselberg-Cossuto

 Have you ever thought of what it feels like to uncover a hidden lost world? To touch history - not just read about it? That is what archeology is all about, and we would like to share excitement and experiences with you. Tel Burna - a fortified town over 2500 years old - is located on the border between two ancient political rivals: Judah and Philistia. The archeological research at the site has begun to reveal how people living in this border city lived and interacted with others, and how their lives were affected by their close proximity to "the enemy". 

Please call the Library at (973) 838-1321 to register for this free program. ________________________________________________________________________ 

 Sunday, 20 November 2011 @ 3pm 

 Tom Doyle and his Guitar - Vocals by Sandy Cory

 Tom's interpretation of big-band, swing jazz arrangements on guitar accompanied by the sensuous vocal of his wife, Sandy, reminds you of Les Paul and Mary Ford. He has worked with some of the best names in the business, such as Goerge Benson, Tommy Emanuel and Sting. His captivating talk will keep you wanting more!  

Please call Kinnelon Library to sign up - 973 838 1321


Sunday, November 6, 2011

Smoke Rise Relic: Car Badge

Smoke Rise Relic: Car Badge
Kim Vawter was intrigued, after reading Meeting Friends at the Smoke Rise Inn: Herb Fisher, to learn about the Kinnelon High School reunions taking place. She promises to rummage through her "bat cave" to find photos from KHS 1968.  Meanwhile, she shares with us a photo of a Smoke Rise relic: the car badge!

As Kim writes:

"I have a really super relic for those who remember using the "badge" attached to the car to get into the East Gate. I think that the North Gate was built later.

Here is a picture of it. It was made of copper and it was enameled. I want to get it restored since there a few chips on it but after all it was attached to the chrome bumper of the cars."

I think I've seen one of these marvelous badges at L'Ecole Museum in Kinnelon.

For those of you who remember using the Smoke Rise car badge, do you still have it? Which gate do you remember using? Any other delicious details to share?

Thanks, Kim!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Hot Spiced Cider: Smoke Rise Inn Recipe

AppleWhat a difference a week makes... especially after ~16 inches of snow in Kinnelon [and ~30 inches for parts of West Milford!], which toppled trees and led to intense power outages. Assuming you are close-to-being-back-to-normal, I bet you're ready for this treat: Hot Spiced Cider from the Smoke Rise Inn!

Randy Polo, General Manager of the Smoke Rise Inn, shares with us the following recipe...

Hot Spiced Cider

If you’re fortunate enough to have a chilly weekend around Halloween, mix up a batch of Hot Spiced Cider.

It’s a great drink to share while gathering with neighbors around the fire pit or while tailgating with friends at the game. This drink will set things right.

2 quarts apple cider 4 cloves
3 cinnamon sticks
5 shots Applejack or Apple Brandy

Heat cider with cloves and cinnamon, add booze and stir. Pat the rims of mugs in brown sugar and serve the cider in them.

Doesn't this sound perfect? I could have used some Hot Spiced Cider after today's delayed Halloween Parade and, certainly, after going trick-or-treating with Emma tonight.

I hope you are all safe and weathered the freak storm safely.

Image Credit: Apple from Flickr.
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