State #16 New York (Upstate)

I can’t believe we have been on the road living in hotels for over 30 days. We are into our second month of our year long adventure and have logged Over 5,600 miles, visited 16 out of the 48/49 states we plan on visiting, and been to Canada twice all while doing laundry and homeschool. No major issues, although on our way from Buffalo to Cooperstown, this happened.


We were driving down the Thruway, which is a toll road, just so you know. Maybe you’ll be smart and tell the GPS to avoid toll roads when you’ve got time to take the scenic route. Oh well, no biggie. But I digress, we were driving when this big RV gets in front of us and slings a pretty big rock up on our windshield. If it had hit an inch lower it would have missed the glass. But no. It hit and sent a crack up the windshield, which is slowing growing as you can see as you make you way around the picture of sweet my hubby, who is so good about taking things in stride. We’ve called the insurance company but since it’s a crack and not just a chip, the windshield has to be replaced. But it’s the weekend and we have to stay somewhere long enough for the glass company to schedule someone out to us. It depends on which state we’re in as to whose territory it is to know which glass company to send out. We already have reservations so it’s a little complicated. Plus after the glass company replaces the windshield, we have to then take the car to the dealership to get the rain sensor, etc recalibrated or something. Apparently, we can’t just take it to the Ford place in the first place. I’m not sure how long the process will take to know how long to stay in one place. Like I said, it’s complicated when you’re on the road the way we are right now. But that’s life and things like that happen. So you drive on.

And drive on we did, straight to Cooperstown, NY, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

It was a little pricey at $80 for us. I guess, I think everything is pricey right now, since we’ve gotten into commercial activities, as opposed to all the historical sites and state and federal parks we were visiting in the Heartland. (So thankful for our National Parks Service and state park services). Anyway, at $80 you reach the membership rate so we went ahead and became members for the year since it didn’t cost us anything additional and that meant we got a magazine and Hall of Fame Yearbook that day, two pins (which Mason has started collecting so that saved him some moolah), 6 more magazines to be mailed, and free entry for the next year and 10% off the gift shop (but we don’t buy anything). The museum was great. It wasn’t very crowded when we got there first thing in the morning but it was bustling by the time we left that afternoon. I would recommend taking the Tour of Plaques (or whatever the official name is). The guide gave some good information about the museum, the voting process, and stories about some of the players and their plaques that you won’t get otherwise. We took the 10:30am tour. No sure if and what time they do the tour otherwise.

The museum is a baseball junkies paradise and it’s pretty interesting even if baseball’s not your favorite sport. It has tons of baseball memorabilia, facts, and plenty of hands on stuff for the kids and adults, alike. They have a little Discovery Tour for the kids with 10 questions to complete while you walk around the museum. The answers are in different sections of the museum so that was cool and the boys got a pack of baseball cards and a little ball of Big League Chew for completing it. Talk about some pretty stoked fellas. Usually, I’m the pack mule of the family but they weren’t giving up those baseball cards for me to tote. No way.

Parking is a little tricky. There’s not a lot of free parking but if you’re willing to walk, like us, you can find some. Mostly, it’s 2hr metered parking, lot parking, or you ride the trolley. We found free street parking but we had to walk a few blocks. But the weather was good so we didn’t mind. It poured the rain tonight and last night but it was dry and very pleasant during the day. Cooperstown is a cute little town. I love the quaint feel. Lots of baseball stores but they were in these old charming buildings.

We journey further upstate to stay at Lake Placid next but not before we take a walk on the wild side at the Wild Center. Oh, and by the way, in case when you heard the word New York, you automatically thought NYC. Here’s what upstate is like…

Yep, small towns, mountains, trees, and lakes. It almost feels like home. Well…kinda. We will hit NYC on our way down the east coast; that will be in a separate post.

Driving up to Lake Placid, we drove through the Adirondack Mountains. People talk about Upstate and the mountains so I guess I was expecting a wow factor. But when you live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and so close to the Great Smokey Mountains, it takes a lot. Don’t get me wrong it’s beautiful.

We made a stop at the Wild Center to get more up-close and personal with the forest. They have this thing called the Wild Walk (included with your ticket) and it gets you up over the canopy. The kids loved the eagles nest (did you know bald eagles keep adding to their nest and the nests can get up 10 feet wide and weight over 3 tons?), the spider’s web, and the snag (which is a man-made hollowed out tree trunk with a spiral staircase inside). They had the best time. We also hiked to some hammocks where Tuck found $1.01 in change. You would have thought he won the lottery. We also walked through the iForest. It’s kinda like a mediation walk except with choral music. Some find it spooky. I thought it was a little loud. It was hard to be quiet and mindful when you’ve got two boys running around but neat none the less.

We attended two shows, one about porcupines and another about otters. My favorite was the porcupine and Trev’s was the otter; boys enjoyed both. I’ve never seen a real porcupine, let alone up close. So cute. I wish it was a pettable (like that word I just made up) critter. The boys also got to paint and participate in some of the other activities at the center. Great experience.

We had planned on visiting The Adirondack Experience (it had great reviews too) but we only had so much time in a day so headed out to Lake Placid.

The Lake Placid area is amazing. We had a wonderful time. It’s so quaint and homey feeling. I totally understand why people vacation here. It was peaceful and calm and beautiful. I could have spent days just chilling and walking around. Our hotel was right across the road from the lake and it had this amazing view of the water from the Great Room. They had a movie and popcorn in the evening, which was supposed to be followed by s’mores at the fire pit but those got rained out. The next morning, after breakfast, the boys threw on their swim clothes for an early morning swim. They were out there before 9am swimming in the lake. I was more than happy to take pictures and videos from the dock. That early in the morning, it was just us and a couple people walking around. Not crowded at all.

There were people swimming from the dock to the other end of the lake and back, twice. I would have drowned (drown?) about 100 times before making to the other side, let alone there and back. We later found out that an official Ironman is held there each year. It was happening in a few weeks so the athletes were out there practicing. It’s such a long distance. I was amazed. I’m also realizing that I need to get a thesaurus because I use the same adjectives over and over. So sorry. I don’t know why y’all keep reading this. 🙂 I definitely felt like I needed to be in better shape to live here, though, with all those serious athletes swimming and biking all around town.

We requested a late check out so we were able to get cleaned up before we changed hotels and states again.

Give me a V!

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