Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Winter White

The day after Christmas the snows came! The grounds around the inn now look properly wintery.

It was also quite blustery, putting the wind chill temps at -7, so I only ventured out as far as the front porch to take picture of our first snow.




There was a 2 foot snow drift in front of the kitchen door. Note that our Halloween pumpkin is quite frozen, which is why it still looks good at this late date.


We even got a good layer of snow on the second floor porch on the main inn.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Sunrise

Merry Christmas to all of our friends and family, and to everyone who has been our guest at the Greenville Arms 1889 Inn.


We wish you a happy and prosperous New Year and hope to see you at the Inn!

Christmas Eve Tradition

In my family it is tradition to wait until Christmas Eve to decorate the tree. Christmas Eve is all about decorating the tree with family and eating holiday treats!

My mom use to make a "normal" Christmas Eve dinner, but everyone would be so stuffed with cookies and ring-a-lings (a frosted raisin and cinnamon roll) that we hardly ever ate dinner.

So last night Mark and I decorated the tree.

It started with bringing in the tree. You can see that we have only a dusting of snow and the sun is brightly shining, but at least it is cold enough to feel like Christmas.


The first step in the decorating is putting on the lights. When I was little, I started out as a "light hanging assistant" with my Dad, then later with my older brother, but then it wasn't long until I was light hanging "master" - or the only one left happy to do this task!


Now it is completely left up to me. Everyone thinks that hanging the ornaments is more fun, but I love sparkling lights. We now use the new energy-efficient LCD light strings and they are great!

The finished tree! We have a very eclectic collection of ornaments - some purchased and some handmade.


Because we put the tree up so late, we also traditionally keep it up until around January 16th (my brother's birthday). So you have plenty of time to stop for a visit or a stay at the inn while the tree is on display in the front dinning room.

Our chocolate shop, Life By Chocolates, will also have all of the Christmas chocolates on sale -- making a visit even sweeter!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Newest Wee Forest Folk

We are very happy to carry Wee Forest Folk in our gift shop at the inn. These are addictively collectable little mouse figures! I started collecting them myself in the 1980's.

We have all of the new Christmas figures available for sale and just received the specially designed piece by the founder of Wee Forest Folk - Annette Petersen, who is still design at the age of 91 years young.



It is called "The Elegant Hostess" (M-423).

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Thanksgiving at the Greenville Arms

While we don't serve a Thanksgiving dinner to guests (they are usually staying with us while visiting family), Mark and I always enjoy making our traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

It was just the two of us this year, so the menu was limited to just our favorites. We started out with roasted chestnuts and a wonderful, buttery and earthy Saint Agur, a blue cheese made from pasteurized cow's milk from the village of Beauzac in the Monts du Velay, part of the mountainous Auvergne region of central France.


Paired with this was a luscious 1984 Domaine De Caplane sauternes.


Then came the main event - an organic free-range turkey with stuffing! The turkey was set in a Maple-Soy-Ginger brine the day before, and then stuffed and roasted. The stuffing was a bread (I use chewy-crusted baguettes), sausage, pine nut, mushroom, celery, onion, and parsley mix.)

I carve the turkey while Mark makes the gravy.


Just enough not to feel as stuffed as the turkey at the end!


Friday, November 12, 2010

Bonus December Retreat

Come to our Bonus Retreat in December.

Our Retreats are a time for people to get together and work on their own projects with no set program. If you're self-motivated and could use time to concentrate without instruction, or if you have a friend you want to spend time with, or you just want a relaxing art vacation, the Retreat package is for you.

Take advantage of this uninterrupted time to finish your holiday projects!

As a bonus for this retreat, Kim LaPolla, workshop director and fiber artist, will be joining you in the studio and will provide informal lessons on how she designs and creates the rabbits for her quilts. Kim will explain how to create a pattern and templates starting with a photo or illustration. Kim uses both a turned-under applique method and a fused method. Other techniques and processes will be covered, such as the crazy-pieced background.

Come join us for this fun week. Enjoy the 24-hour access for the studio, full country breakfast, afternoon cookies and fruit, and delicious 3-course dinner. Also unlimited coffee, tea, and hot chocolate!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Dutch Baby Breakfast Dish

Everyone has been asking for the recipe for the "Dutch Baby", a breakfast dish that is sort of like a large puffed pancake that is baked in oven. It is one of my favorite dishes and I don't get to make it that often, mainly because I usually only make it for small groups, as it does take a little longer to prepare and I only have so many small skillets!


So here is the recipe:

Dutch Babies (or German Pancakes)

For four servings,

  • 4 Eggs

  • 1 Cup Milk

  • 1 Cup Flour

  • approx. 6 - 8 Tablespoons of butter/margerine

Preheat oven to 425 while you are blending the the egg mixture. Crack the eggs into a blender and whirl at high speed for about a minute. With the motor running, gradually add the milk, and then the flour. Continue whirling for 30 seconds.

Portion the butter into one large oven-safe non-stick skillet (3 - 4 quart size) or 4 small oven safe non-stick skillets (1 quart size) (I use a 8" teflon oven-safe skillet to make individual servings), then put in the oven to melt. If you are using 4 skillets, divide the butter equally between them. I also spray the pan with non-stick coating to make sure the Dutch Babies don't stick to the pans, which would spoil the presentation!

When the butter is melted, pour the egg mixture into the skillet/skillets and bake for 20 - 25 minutes. It is done when edges are browned and the center is firm.

Serve immediately. May be served plain, sprinkled with powdered sugar, syrup, lemon wedges, or fruit.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Hula Hooping at the Greenville Arms 1889 Inn

We have a belly dancer here at the Greenville Arms 1889 Inn and she was talking about Hula Hooping and offered me a challenge, Do the Hula-Hoop for 20 minutes or give her a box of chocolates. What's in it for me?

Here are the pictures of us doing the Hula. Loads for fun here at the Hudson River Valley Fiber Art Workshops.

Let's get this party started.

Hula Hula Hula Hoop.

And here Lola, the pro. Look at the smile.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fall Colors hitting their stride at the Greenville Arms

The Fall Colors are just hitting their stride here at Life By Chocolate at the Greenville Arms. The surrounding country side may be past it's prime, though still very colorful and beautiful, but as you can see, we still have plenty of green leaves getting ready to change, as well as plenty of beautiful fall trees and bushes. Now's the time to come up and visit us.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Apple Picking Time

Fall is a glorious time to be in the Catskills. Not only our the tree leaves turning magnificent colors of yellow, orange, and red, but it it apple picking time!


There a number of pick-your-own apple farms in Greene county. Two of them are Schnare's Sunset Orchard and Boehm Farm.

You still have time to see some great Fall color. The trees around the Greenville Arms are just starting to turn and the ivy on the Main Inn is starting, too.


The pool may be closed, but it is a lovely spot to sit with a nice cup of hot chocolate, coffee, or tea - which is available anytime!


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Prime Time Fall at Olana

This is the time of year I love the most - the brisk air, the falling leaves, colorful trees, and sunny skies!

There are many wonderful scenic routes to drive around our area to take in the glorious Fall colors. One of these destinations is Olana, the historic estate and home built by Frederick Church, who was one of the Hudson River painters of the turn of the previous century.

I recently enjoyed an afternoon up at Olana (located in the town of Hudson) when I delivered lunches to our group of painters taking a workshop with Hudson River Valley Art Workshops.


The views were tremendous - you could see the Hudson River and the Catskill Mountains.

The house is pretty stunning, too!



One of my favorite places to walk at Olana is their perennial garden located on a lower slope near the house.


It seems like there is always something blooming.


And they have interesting varieties of flowers.




Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Scent of Chocolate

Fall means chocolate at the inn because that is when Life By Chocolates, our chocolate company starts getting in gear for the chocolate season - starting with Halloween

We start making chocolate cats by the dozens! We have dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate, and vegan dark chocolate cats!

We also have beautiful gift boxes of chocolates, perfect as a gift or for snacking in your room.

This boxes have a selection of some of our favorite flavors for Fall, including Maple Creams, Pumpkin Pie Caramels, Peppermint Cordials, and more.

All of these chocolate confections are made right at our inn using the finest ingredients, starting with organic chocolate.

Our chocolate shop is open Wednesday thru Sunday from 10:00am to 5:00pm, but since we are an inn and open practically all the time, if you get a hankering for some fabulous chocolate at a time when we are "closed", give us a call!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

September Flora

Fall is definitely on the way, although there was not yet been much color changes on the trees.

The robins have all left their nests. (This one was built on our fire escape stairs.)

The foxglove is still blooming.

The marigolds in the herb garden are going gangbusters, threatening to crowd out all the herbs!

The ivy is still creeping around.

And the Angel's Trumpet is still putting out their spectacular blooms.

But, as I said, Fall is just around the corner!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Yes, We're Still Here and Still Having Great Workshops

I can't believe it is a month since my last blog post. I guess we've just been having too much fun with the workshops.

Now let's see . . . where did I leave off.

Yes, the wonderful weekend with Larkin Van Horn (she'll be back in 2012!)

Following Larkin, was another fantastic workshop taught by Rayna Gillman - Deconstructing the Screen.

This is Rayna giving a little trunk show of her own work.

This was a wonderful class made up of both fiber artists, wearable art artists, and print makers. A marvelous convergence of ideas and talent.

If you're wondering about the pile of white fabric on the tables, it is the mother lode of machine-made lace. It was donated to us by an inn guest of ours who was downsizing. The piles use to fill 4 tables, but now it is down to just 2. It is free for the taking, so if you're in the area stop by soon before it is all gone!

This is a print done on fabric and on watercolor paper.

The railing on the North Cottage was turned into a drying rack / display!

The rope lines strung between trees in back of the studio also featured a colorful display every day.

Rayna and Calli talk about screen printing. Calli is the sister of Koo Schadler, who teaches an egg tempera class for us (Koo is coming next year - sign up early as her class always fills quickly).