Our Memorial Day weekend this year was the first we have spent on the East Coast in quite some time. If you are newer to Abbey Co., I was born in Upstate NY and moved to Washington right after high school. So, family has been a 3,000 mile trip across the country for over a decade and a half now (crazy)!
Normally we head back East around the holidays because it is a better time of year for me to take off work, but sadly we had a memorial service to attend so timing was different this year. We decided to make the trip last a week so that we could get lots of visiting with family squeezed in. It was stressful missing work in the heat of the season, but very precious to have my girls loving time spent with family that they don’t normally get.
When I try to explain to people how far upstate I was raised they often struggle to understand… it is SO different from life out here in Seattle that my Washington peeps have a hard time envisioning my life that way. My hometown is about as country as you can get! It is very East Coast in the sense that there are big colonial farmhouses sitting on acres of property; my dad’s house where we stayed is no exception.
OK, so you had my disclaimer about how country it is, and what is country life without some pet chickens?! Haha! But truly, that is the first thing we did was put on our mud boots and head to the outdoor store (Runnings I think?) so that my 4-year-old could help my dad pick out 6 new chickens for eggs, and 2 geese just for fun. My daughter was obviously THRILLED! My dad did lots of research on this breed of goose (American Buff to be specific) and they are supposed to be great pets, so we spent lots of time socializing with them and they actually were quite cute and personable.
Other Upstate NY things we did? Genesee Brewing in Rochester and High Falls were a must on the list – my hubby liked the beer and I was meh over the food, but it was still a fun stop as we were touristing. We ate chicken wings at Country Sweet Chicken & Ribs, enjoyed a garbage plate at Tom Whal’s, and had some homemade ice cream from the cute little ice cream shop where my sister and I both had our first jobs. Between getting my annual fix of (good NY-style) chicken wings, pizza and hot sauce this week my weight gain was embarrassing, but also kinda worth it.
One day we ventured to the Strong Museum of Play which kind-of blew my mind… it was about 20 times the size (not even exaggerating) of any play museum I have been to in Washington State and it seemed to go on forever. There is DAYS of entertainment in there! The hi-light for me was the Butterfly Garden at the end.
We wrapped up the whole visit with an obligatory Memorial Day cookout and bonfire. Being a foodie family we did not disappoint with our food choices… my dad made sliders in 3-varieties of meats (the Bison was my preference) and we had toppings galore! There is an quick-pickling recipe my husband found that we have been loving and used on some red onions that paired awesome with our jalapenos and Siracha mayo. We threw together a ton of sides and my standby coleslaw dressing recipe came in clutch.
Never-mind the fact that we left for our return flight at 12am Western time and will be recovering from the tiredness for days… it was very fun and worthwhile as always!
So, how was your MDW this year? Thanks to all whose service and makes this day of freedom grilling possible… you are never forgotten!
X.O. – Abbey Co.
P.S. – the baby carrier I used for traveling is a Lillebaby “All Seasons”… I have had it and loved it for years! You can find them on Amazon using the picture linked below (affiliate). Don’t forget free shipping with Prime!
Abbey Co. Seattle is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. I am not sponsored by any of these products, but am bringing you info on how to purchase them because I LOVE THEM!!!