Happiness, found- in a small, sugary pillow of dough, drizzled with chocolate

While my quest for a weekly hit of Westchester happiness continues, life also continues to sometimes get in the way of even the best laid plans. Recent weeks have been challenging, side-tracking my attempts at big new adventures or even just solid blocks of family time. I’m sure you know the feeling. I didn’t give up on my quest, though- I just adjusted my objectives. Sometimes a brief escape for a decadent treat is all you can pull off…so you might as well make it good!

Happy Day Westchester ZeppoleMe 2

Not long ago I was surprised to hear about a restaurant right here in Westchester specializing in none other than {my-childhood-definition-of-culinary-happiness}: ZEPPOLE.  Continue reading

March Hike: Cranberry Lake Preserve

Yes, it’s still cold…spring has not yet sprung…and it’s still awfully hard to get everyone motivated to get outside for a hike. I know, I know! But I’m on a mission here, folks – one hike a month. So, this month, I had to plan carefully and find a hike that offered just a little something “extra”. Maybe that’s what you need, too, to get your family out the door.  Consider Cranberry Lake Preserve- one of my favorite hikes in Westchester. Here’s how we made this hike just a little more enticing, to get the family motivated on a cold and partially overcast day: we turned this hike at Cranberry Lake Preserve into a scavenger hunt, full of history and mystery.

Cranberry Lake Preserve has a fascinating past, and remnants of its days-gone-by are preserved all around the trails. Not only that, the Westchester Department of Parks has made available a History Trail Map, which makes the historical markers and artifacts around the park easy to find and explore.  Click here to link to the map, and bring a copy with you.

This hike is easily turned into a scavenger hunt by searching for the many unique points of interest around the lake. This will engage even your reluctant hikers. Here’s  a quick list to get you started – 6 of the many interesting features to hunt for and find on your hike at Cranberry Lake:

1. The quarry – it’s beautiful and there are plenty of areas along the back ridge where the kids can do some rock scrambling….with careful supervision, of course! Continue reading