Happy Birthday to me! Yesterday was my birthday and we had a festive entire weekend (to be honest, some of it was just coincidental timing, but we can pretend they were all birthday festivities, right?) Saturday was a beautiful spring day and we were spontaneous and boy did it pay off. While looking around for something interesting to do on my birthday Paul had found that there was a steampunk exhibit at a little museum in Bethlehem, PA (which is an hour from here.) With nothing else on the agenda until the evening we decided to get going, especially as Paul has even picked out a restaurant to get brunch at first (it really was so nicely planned!) We headed off to Bethlehem (giving us a good chance to make a lot of headway in our audiobook-The Penderwicks on Gardam Street) and easily parked and found Billy’s Downtown Diner. Paul picked it because he had read good reviews, so we were cracking up when we arrived and discovered that the owner is, apparently, a cousin of Criss Angel “Mindfreak”, who we think is the most ridiculous person in the world, and apparently uses that a bit. There was a Mindfreak Burger. But despite all that silliness the people were nice, the menu was great, Clark deemed his pancakes the best he’d ever had (and I can concur that the blueberries in them were absolutely exceptional), my homefries were crisped perfectly, and, as we were in PA, we had Scrapple too.
It was a short and pleasant walk to the Kemerer Museum of Decorative Arts. It was the first day of their Steampunk exhibit and there was a craft for kids (or families, as the case may be-we all made one!) Again, friendly people, a neat and weird little museum, and I just really enjoyed everything about it. And am more determined than ever that Clark should read Airborn by Kenneth Oppel.
After that we walked around the charming and bustling town, exclaiming over the lovely blend of historical buildings, easy parking, nice shops and restaurants. We will definitely be back for the Christmas festivities, if not before. We capped it off with a fantastic ice cream from the Penn State Creamery.
In the evening we had tickets to a show at RVCC, this time for the Popovich Pet Parade. I had no idea what to expect and we were all surprised and delighted. Apparently Mr. Popovich and his famous trained housecats have appeared on just about every tv show you can think of and he is quite well regarded! It was a fantastic blend of old-fashioned vaudville-circusry, plus all these animal acts. The animals were cats, dogs, some geese, some white doves, a couple rats, a parrot, and a couple little goats. At one point 15 cats were on stage. I was really impressed that not only is Popovich clearly an animal lover and amazing trainer (and all his animals are from animal shelters! Ordinary cats and dogs of all types!), but also the best devil’s stick performer I’ve ever seen, and an amazing juggler. It was nice that it was a blend of things like that along with the charming animal acts. It really was a unique and entertaining show.
Sunday was my birthday and I had a wonderful morning leisurely finishing my quilt (a separate post for later this week), having a great breakfast, and opening gifts. The kids seemed really into picking out cards and gifts for me this year, which was so adorable. Then it was off to join the Cub Scouts on a pack hike at Hacklebarney State Park. I had really been wanting to check out this park for a while, so I was happy to have this be our activity for the day. Plus I got to be with so many of my friends! And what a nice park! Astonishingly it is only a half hour from my mom’s house so I cannot believe I’ve never been there. Very woodsy, easy paths, lots of boulders to climb, and waterfalls. We’re definitely looking forward to going back when we can really just relax and spend as much time as we want there.
*and p.s. it was such a busy weekend I was happy to have today, Monday, to just indulge in uploading photos, being cozy inside, doing some housework, and completing my personal birthday challenge (now in its 2nd year)-which is to reply to each and every birthday greeting on FB with a book recommendation for that person. And I even enjoyed the rain: