Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sasquatch Hiking Club - Black Rock Forest

I grew up spending much of my days outdoors.  We hiked, camped, fished, rode horses, etc.  Lucky I married into a family that enjoys the outdoors & the sense of having those "family" moments.

We live in an amazing area that provides great hiking trails.  Literally right in our backyard.  The Hudson Valley of New York has stunning views and offers a wide range of a sense of outdoors.

Some of the pictures of the views are from a previous hike!

My brother in law put together a hiking club & named it the Sasquatch Hiking Club (we even have shirts).

Possible squatch siting >>>

There are several families that join us, we are all friends and have kids all around the same age.

From a previous hike this year

We try and go on several hikes each season as the weather permits.  We usually meet up at my brother/sister in laws home, have breakfast together & then head out to our trail for that chosen hike.

In July we went on a hike at Black Rock Forest.

Black Rock Forest is a nearly 4000-acre natural living laboratory for field-based scientific research and education, operated by a unique consortium of colleges and universities, public and independent schools, and scientific and cultural institutions.
  • The Black Rock Forest Consortium and its members, history, board, and staff.
  • The Black Rock Forest and its geology, biodiversity, and location.
  • The facilities and resources of the Forest, including labs, classrooms, housing, scientific instrumentation, environmental monitoring, and curricula.
  • The Forest’s award-winning green buildings, with sustainable design features that include geothermal heating and cooling, solar panels, composting toilets, and materials from the Forest itself.
  • The Forest’s publications, including its newsletter, species lists, and articles in scientific journals.
  • The School in the Forest, a program that offers the Forest’s resources and curricula to underserved urban schools.
 There is also a beautiful reservoir located on the hike that provided much entertainment along with a lunch break.

There are a couple of different trails you can take.  The one we chose was a little steep in the beginning, actually all the way until we reached the top of where the reservoir sits.  But, it was so well worth it.  Beauty right in our backyard.

All of the kids (ages ranging from 2 - 11) did amazing.  In fact, they led the pack at some points reading the map and following our color coded path.  I love that each one of our children enjoy the outdoors, exploring and loving all that has it to offer.

Black Rock Forest provides a great nature outing for all that not only includes breathtaking views, nature education for the kids (well and adults too), but brings out a sense of togetherness!

Once the hike is over we are not quite ready to call it a day.  Sometimes we don't take lunch breaks during the hike, so we head off to a local restaurant (or sometimes to the family pool at my in-laws) for a board of directors meeting to discuss the days events.  Ok really it is just an excuse to gather, eat, have drinks of choice and enjoy each others company.  After all we really are like one big family!

Happy Sunday!

With much love, peace & happiness

Friday, July 18, 2014

Hands of Haven - a partnership with Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity has made its way into my heart on many levels.

I visit the ReStore multiple times a month, sometimes multiple times a week.  I just never know what I am going to find.  The fact that I am able to find furniture for great prices, re-love them into something beautiful to me is a pretty sweet deal.  Some days I find nothing but others I leave with a van full!


Knowing that the money goes into building or remodeling a home in the community adds a nice icing to the layer!

My husband's uncle is a home builder (he built our amazing home), and worked with Habitat for some time.

It brings in revitalization into the community, brings a sense of accomplishment to those that volunteer, and offers a home to someone that needs it.

I recently attended a blogging conference in Atlanta, GA.  The Haven Conference.  It is a conference where DIY-ers, crafters, and the like all come together in one big bloggers arena!  We connect with bloggers from all over.

Haven has teamed up with Habitat for Humanity on July 26, 2014.  And, it's not just in Atlanta...  It is a very special, international wide, one-day event!!

There are many ways you can lend a helping hand.  You can volunteer at your local Habitat for Humanity, visit the ReStore and make a purchase.  You can also make donations whether it be furniture or household items.  Every little bit helps!  Please visit the Habitat website HERE to learn more!!

What can you do?

Do good…on a grand scale!

Hands of Haven Day
Saturday, July 26
On 7/26/14, volunteer with your local Habitat, or visit your local Restore, or just wear the t-shirt proudly!

Purchase your Hands of Haven T-shirt by clicking this linkShare a picture in your tee on July 26th using #HandsofHaven.
hands of haven shirt
The above was taken directly from the Haven Conference website - Hands of Haven

I'd love to see pictures of any of my followers/readers in your purchased tee.  Or if you volunteer/donate, or if you visit your ReStore to make a purchase.  You can take the picture and send it by twitter, instagram or Facebook.  I will do a blog post to show the world...  Let's blow their socks off!!

Instagram - @fernavenueblog
Twitter - @fernavenueblog
Facebook -

With much love, peace & happiness

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

J. Murphy Blacksmith Dresser makeover

Hi all... Hope everyone is having a fantastic week.  We've endured a few pop up storms lately.  They've produced lots of wind & heavy rains.  Luckily for us we've escaped the downed trees & power lines and have retained electricity.  Not everyone has been so fortunate around us.

I've had several pieces of furniture that I've worked on recently.  I just haven't had much time to share with you.  End of school & start of camp, Haven Conference along with a few family activities had my mind preoccupied for a bit.

I had gone to visit my booth one morning & on the way back I stopped at Habitat for Humanity Restore.  They had nothing and so I was walking out when I see 2 gentlemen unloading the back of a truck.  TWO...not one but two beautiful bookcases one with a secretarial desk.  I scored.

My van was loaded but as I was driving up the road to our house I noticed some stuff being thrown out by our neighbor...  I couldn't stop right then, but let me tell you what I saw I was going back.  I couldn't get home fast enough... I pulled into the driveway, grabbed my husband & said let's go.

I grabbed this old dresser...ok ok well my hubby grabbed it.  I helped load it.

Doesn't he look so very happy :)

This is one of those score days that you are just like "YES"!!!

This dresser is one that I had in mind exactly what I wanted to do, and I had just been waiting for the right piece.

I have always loved the Ethan Allan J. Murphy Blacksmith sign.  I mean not just love but LOVE!

I have been holding out until I found the piece I really wanted it on!! Actually this is the 2nd piece I've is a piece in my house, but I haven't taken good pictures of it!

I started out with this...  By the way those knobs were stunning, but unfortunately not able to be salvaged :(

This was actually after a good cleaning!!

I did a reverse stencil using my Silhouette Cameo (have I mentioned...I love my Silhouette?)  I then painted it with an Antique White chalk paint.  

And...the final result -

I love it and would love to keep it, but it will be heading over to my booth soon.  I will post pictures of the one I did for our home another day!!

I am also working on a weekly series that will hopefully be coming to you in the next week or two.  Can you guess what I will be sharing with you on a weekly basis?  Come back soon to find out!

With much love, peace & happiness!!