Mother’s Day: Last Minute [Local] Gifts

Mother’s Day: Last Minute [Local] Gifts

Are you a last minute gift buyer? I am. I also am an online shopper, and those two don’t mix well. Luckily there are TONS of local books and gifts on Amazon (even with Prime shipping) that you can order TODAY in time to give to your mom on Mother’s Day. So here’s any idea: Buy your mom this book about Day Trips and Weekend Getaways in Upstate NY, and let her pick one for you to take her on this year. If your mom (or wife, or friend who is a mother, or anyone you know) hasn’t read Summer In A Glass, this book would also make a great Mother’s Day Gift. How about Finger Lakes Coffee Roasters Traveler Collection? I’d love that for Mother’s Day! How about a MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check Enamel Mug? Would your mom love a locally-crafted, world famous piece? Or perhaps just a mug? I couldn’t find any Mackenzie-Childs pieces with Prime shipping, so check to make sure your order will come before Sunday. What ever you buy your mom for Mother’s Day, just keep in mind Mother’s Day is to celebrate all has done for you (including ya know–life) and let her know you appreciate her! There are affiliate links in this...
Finger Lakes Felt Topographic Map

Finger Lakes Felt Topographic Map

Well here we go, I was on Etsy.com again recently looking for Finger Lakes related goods and came across these interesting maps. In the Etsy shop Snuppan, Rochester’s Erin Britt makes these typographic maps of Finger Lakes (and other New York state lakes). Aren’t these neat? I found a Keuka Lake and Owasco Lake map. What do you think? Don’t you want to touch it? Would you hang it on a wall or a shelf?  ...
Finger Lakes Grape Leaf Necklace

Finger Lakes Grape Leaf Necklace

Really now… this is very cool. I just love finding Finger Lakesy jewelry that isn’t in the shape of a lake (because… ya know… the lakes doesn’t exactly look pretty out, of context…). This is a grape leaf necklace made right here in the Finger Lakes, in Bath. The necklace is for sale on Etsy.com from jewelry artist Lorrie Skelly. The grape leaf is made from PMC3 clay which is .999 silver. Thining the clay to a paint like consistancy, several layers are painted on an actual greape leaf from a local Finger Lakes vineard. After it’s fired in the kiln, the leaf is burned off leaving an exact print of the grape leaf. Each leaf varies in size and shape. The cord is black silk. Cool,...
Say Merry Christmas With A Finger Lakes Glass Tree Pendant

Say Merry Christmas With A Finger Lakes Glass Tree Pendant

These are the sweetest little things! These Christmas Tree pendants are made from glass handpicked off the shores of Cayuga Lake. Wear them as a necklace, hang them in a window and let them catch the sunlight (if you can find some in the Finger Lakes… jeeez), or buy a pair and give one to your best friend or favorite Finger Lakes blogger. Heather Alexander of Canandaigua, NY describes how she made these adorable trees: “I picked through my boxes of lake glass to find the right pieces to make these pendants look like Christmas trees. Each piece of glass is hand wrapped with black plated chopper wire and Swarovski crystals sparkle like Christmas tree lights.” One of these little guys would make a charming, Finger Lakesy Christmas gifts, don’t you...
Artfully Crafted Chocolate at Rue Claire Artisan Chocolates in Lodi, NY

Artfully Crafted Chocolate at Rue Claire Artisan Chocolates in Lodi, NY

As part of my Great Halloween Birthday Giveaway (ending 10/30, enter NOW!), I had been searching for real Chocolatiers in the Finger Lakes. Last Saturday, I stopped for a visit at Rue Claire Lavender Farm and Artisan Chocolate in Lodi, NY. The shining sun caused the lake to sparkle and the leaves to glow–best day of the year for a drive to Lodi! This quaint little place is perched atop a small lavender-clad hill. Owner Claire Benjamin designed this eco-friendly shop that her husband, Mark and father-in-law, Wallace built the 2 years ago. Located at 9403 Route 414 on East side of Seneca Lake, Rue Claire is in perfect position to be a stop on your Seneca Lake Wine Tour. I can’t even tell you how charming this delightful little shop is! It is decorated with lavender, antiques, trinkets, and of course–chocolate.   Claire studied under Le Cordon Bleu Technical Director and Master Chocolatier, Laurent Pagès, and she sees chocolate as her canvas. Her gift for chocolate as a Fine Art is evident in the shop’s decoration and it’s products. The chocolates are perfect and Claire’s attention to detail in the packaging and display makes a trip to Rue Claire’s a really fun and unique experience. The chocolates themselves are made with organic milk and high quality French chocolate. Also available at Rue Claire is chocolate tea–yes, chocolate. tea. I was lucky enough to take a bag home with me, which gave me an excuse to use my Great Great Grandmother’s Austrian tea cups. Claire and Mark Benjamin started the Lavender Farm 6 years ago, and they grow Lavender organically–free of herbicides and pesticides. Do you love chocolate as...
Ithaca’s Finest Pastries and Chocolate at Sarah’s Patisserie

Ithaca’s Finest Pastries and Chocolate at Sarah’s Patisserie

Last week, I set out looking for handmade, artisan chocolatiers in the Finger Lakes for the Great Halloween Birthday Giveaway. What I found was little piece of France right in Ithaca. Sarah’s Patisserie is a sweet little gem tucked away in Cayuga Heights’ Community Corners plaza (view map). Just minutes from Cornell’s campus and a few miles from downtown Ithaca, customers from all over come to Sarah’s Patisserie for their variety handmade fine pasties and chocolates. A small French Patisserie, Sarah’s Patisserie is fancy without being pretentious. Owners Sarah and Tammy and their small staff are very friendly, and the shop’s decor matches the intricate, artful style of their pastries and chocolate. Chef Tammy Travis is a graduate of the French Culinary Institute in New York, and creates (designs, really) the Patisserie’s delicious, handmade perfections. Folks: The woman has a Degree in Chocolate. Everything out of Tammy’s kitchen is unique, making Sarah’s Patisserie a one-of-a-kind Ithaca experience. Sarah’s Patisserie is known for classic French delights including fresh croissants, tarts, and a cake by the name of “Sixth Avenue”–a layered masterpiece of chocolate cake, coffee buttercream, hazelnut meringue, chocolate mousse, crème brulee, and chocolate ganache. During my visit, Sarah shared with me a few of items: Opera Torte Demisphere – Marzipan, amaretto torte, creme brulee Assorted Chocolates   Some of the Patisserie’s customer favorites: Flourless Chocolate Torte (truly a work of art!) Orange Chocolate Fandango Chocolate Mint Macaroons I am so pleased to give my readers and fans a chance to treat yourself to some of what Sarah’s Patisserie has to offer! I am giving away handmade, artisan chocolate for Halloween and it’s easy...