Finger Lakes Wine

Our first adventure into New York wine country. It rained a lot as we left Syracuse, but cleared up by the time we made it to Cayuga Lake. Cayuga Lake is one of the many finger lakes. It was about an hour drive from Syracuse. That's Alyson in the car...she was taking tons of pictures out the rainy windows. Cayuga Lake is the Eastern most of the finger lakes and one of the bigger ones. No one knew how much fun we were gonna have at the start of the day.
So happy to be out of the car and at the first winery.
Alyson, which way do we go?
Sister's tasting wine! Alyson was trying all the different fruit flavors at this first winery.
Some of Lauren's handy self portrait work!
First winery was a success! Our first of many boxes.
Alyson and Doobie, the namesake for the wineries "Jackass" Wine.
Grapes at Goose Watch, the second winery we visited.
Very picturesque here! We tasted wine in the building in the background and you can see the lake in the far background.
Which way Alyson?
Pictures out by the grapes after we did a little tasting and shopping. It was turning into a beautiful day!
Sisters and the burning bush at our next winery.
They had lots of barrels and were decorated for Halloween. The man directing our tasting was a super cute old man that had a rhyme for every wine! (Did you catch that?)
Even though we didn't like many wines at this vineyard...the house cat was a big hit with our resident cat lady, Alyson.
Sisters, sisters, there were never such devoted sisters! Caring, sharing, every little thing we are wearing!
The real story is there was a bug in my hair and my sister was helping me get it out!
The fourth winery was a little further off the lake, but very nice scenery and more animals...
This is Melody the Scottish Cow.
We bought treats to feed Melody and the goats.
I love that Alyson and Lauren are leaning and so are Melody and the goat!
Happy Hallowine!
This is the view we had while driving between wineries. I didn't mind being the driver, I had lots to look at.
Grapes at the fifth winery!
It was so nice outside, we were able to have lunch outside under a canopy of leaves.
We had lunch and wine lakeside at the Thirsty Owl Winery.
We made a little discovery during our wine tasting...while Lauren likes whites and I like reds...turns out I have a new found affinity for some sweet wines. They're so NICE! A little sweet, but NICE!
Our last and favorite winery. We bought more wine at Lucas Winery than any other place. I believe it was 6 bottles for each of us.
We made it home with all these boxes of wine. I personally bought a case and a half. I can't wait to start drinking them! Finger Lakes wine tasting was a huge hit!

Alyson Comes to Syracuse

Alyson made the trip from New York City to Syracuse! We picked her up at the airport and headed out for our first night out on the town. We went to a great brewery for dinner and drinks to start the weekend off right! Lots of yummy local brews. Alyson was a fan of a pumpkin ale and Lauren and I liked a blueberry brew. I also enjoyed a beer called Downtown Brown...that name provided many laughs the whole weekend.


Niagara Falls: Canada Side

I didn't know, but the underground railroad was very big in this area. I decided to join the crew above to run a few slaves over to Canada. Can you spot me? We headed over the Rainbow Bridge to spend the day in Canada.
Picture of the Horseshoe Falls from the Canadian side.
Very impressive!
The water looks like glass going over the side. Surprisingly quiet from the other side of the falls. Can't believe anyone would try to go over the those falls.
Me with the Canadian Falls.
I like this picture because it has the American Falls on the left and the Horseshoe Falls behind me :)
Lauren's spectacular handy work. One of my favorite pictures from the trip! American Falls are behind us. The little fall on the far right is the Bridal Veil.
We rode an open air cable car across a whirlpool that forms in the bend of the river.
The whirlpool spins counter-clockwise. We could see people fishing and the trees were gorgeous.
Us on the cable car over the whirlpool.
At the suggestion of Uncle Al...we went to a few wineries in the area. Something I've never done, but now know how much I enjoy! The first winery wasn't the friendliest. Lauren reassured me that it would get better.
Found my barrel to go over the falls!
Second winery of the day.
Having fun before we even made it into the tasting room.
They had some fun with us and tried to trick us when tasting a few different Chardonnays, but we knew what we were talking about! We liked it there so much we bought a few bottles!
On our way home...we drove through Buffalo and decided to stop at the Home of the Original Buffalo Wings.
A buffalo with wings!
They were tasty little wings. Bought myself a t-shirt to remember the experience because I don't think I'll be heading back to Buffalo any time soon!

Niagara Falls: American Side

Lauren and I had a few days off together...so we made a road trip up to Niagara Falls. I worked the night before, so I slept in the car while Lauren drove us the 3 hours to get there. The picture above is of the American Falls from the American side. You can see the Horseshoe Falls in the distance. We got a little lost when we first came to town. We just followed the mist to the falls (cause you could see it from a distance).
It was colder our first day in town than the second. We went straight to Maid of the Mist to see the falls from below.
This is the Rainbow Bridge between Canada and the U.S.
That's me on the left and Lauren on the right in our ponchos waiting to get on the boat.
That's how much the wind was blowing. I had a long sleeve t-shirt, a fleece and a coat on under that poncho. Of course there were mittens and a hat too!
Boating past the American Falls.
Me at the bottom of the Horseshoe Falls on the Canada side.
Canadian Falls
After our boat ride. We went to the visitor center and were able to find a hike along the Niagara River. We headed to Devil's Hole per our waiter's recommendation. We were very excited about the Fall foliage.
I wasn't expecting the river to be SO blue. It was beautiful.We walked down many stairs to get to the bottom of Devil's Hole.
Picture of the trail we walked on once we were at the bottom.
We snuck off the trail to get closer to the river. That's me enjoying the view.
Taking a little break on our way back up.
It's hard to see, but that's me making my senior picture pose against the tree.
Closer view...takes me right back to Portage MI.
Happy couple playing in the leaves. Lauren was spot on for self portraits on this trip.
Lauren's uncle lives just outside of Niagara Falls NY and that's where we spent the night. They were all decorated for Halloween. When he was giving up directions he kept saying, "You won't miss it!". And we didn't!
They made us a nice ham dinner and then we some how talked them into driving us back to the falls now that the sun was down. Lauren, her aunt and uncle and myself all walked across the bridge to Canada and walked along the falls. It was a bit chilly, but Lauren and I wanted to see how they colored the falls at night. It wasn't quite what we were expecting. Pictures didn't come out too great. They basically shine colored lights at the falls.
One of many pictures where we ask someone to take our pictures in front of some tourist scene and the pictures turns out to just be us and you have no idea where we are because the tourist scene didn't make the picture. We are actually standing on the Canadian side with the American Falls behind us. We headed home and went straight to bed...we had a busy day planned for tomorrow! Stay tuned.