Thursday, October 4, 2012


Meet Freckles (the little polka-dotted one) and her mom Semi. They live next door at Owl Ridge Alpacas. This family-run farm offers tours and alpaca education to our guests who wander on over for a visit. Baby Freckles has been sold, but I just learned that their most recent acquisition is a 4 week old alpaca. I can't wait to see it!

If you visit, you will also see bunnies, horses, the coolest bantam and other varieties of chickens, a rooster of course, and turkeys. They also have luxurious knitting wool from the herd and other alpaca-related items for sale. For more information, visit:

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Went out for a couple of hours and returned to find these pumpkins artfully placed in the flower bed. The Great Pumpkin lives!

Friday, September 7, 2012


After waiting all summer, we finally have moonflowers! These delicate, nocturnal beauties emit a lovely fragrance all night long and last until the morning sun burns them to a shriveled stump.

Last evening five flowers were open, but there are plenty of buds waiting for their moment to burst. These were worth the effort of fighting off drought, aphids, and other unknown pests we had this summmer.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Jump, kids!

The barn swallows and tree swallows are beginning to gather in large groups on the telephone wires, meaning very soon they will begin their long, long journey south.  

Just a few days ago, however, I noticed a new pile of bird poop on the floor of our barn. Sure enough, when I looked up there was a barn swallow nest with three little heads peeking out. 

It's a little late for a new brood, since the swallows usually leave around this week or next, so I wonder what will happen to these little guys.  Perhaps the parents instinctively know that this year's flight will be later? 

In any case, I stood under them this morning, and called "Jump, kids! Its time to go!"

Monday, June 18, 2012

New cat--meet Dorian Gray

 Meet Dorian Gray (a.k.a.Purry)
This guy's been hanging around for a few months, but you know the rule: if you feed them, they belong to you. So, after few nips and a shot from the vet, he's now legal and ours. Turns out... there's a very good chance that's he is Purry, one of my neighbor's barn cats. I told Elam he owed me $110, but he replied "looks like you've got yourself a new cat!"

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

All Hail the Moccamaster!

Our local source for coffee beans is gimme! coffee. We like our coffee freshly ground and we like our coffee strong, but starting with a good coffee bean was only the beginning in our quest for the perfect cup of coffee. Our preferred method is the French press, but making 3-4 pots of French press coffee for guests in the morning was becoming too complicated. Simplicity and consistency were absolute requirements for a new drip coffee maker, but we were not ready to go for the Bunn commercial monsters which would require the removal of a kitchen cabinet.

Our biggest problem was grind overflow and mess. We tried 4 different department-store coffee makers and 3 different bean grinders. We tried using polar water and another local brand of coffee (sorry, gimme! we had to!) We tried grinding the beans the night before. Nothing worked, and we were not willing to reduce the amount of coffee we used.

Looking for sympathic ears, I put another call into our customer service friends at gimme! and after a few weeks of research they came up with a solution--The Technivorm Moccamaster. Here's the Cook's Illustrated Test Kitchen clip.

It's beautifully designed and sits on the counter top. No timers. No settings. No bells and whistles. No grind overflow and no mess. It makes coffee--perfect coffee. That's all it does. And that's all we need.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

What's new at The Hayward House

1) just this week launched a new web site (many and better pics still to be added)
2) began renovations on the third guest room (opens this spring - fingers crossed)
3) lost 2 cats - R.I.P. Squatter and Joe*. Little Pip and Jake the Dog are still with us (although we think Jake losing his hearing)
4) massage therapy school is continuing to be a life changing event for Michele (more later)
5) now accept credit cards (thanks, iPhone!)
6) often ranked #1 B&B in Interlaken on Trip Advisor (alternating the #2 spot with our friends at the Black Walnut whom we frequently pelt with commercial eggs. Hey, Jack and Rich--remember all those referrals?!) 
7) ranked in the top 10% of all b&bs in the Finger Lakes
8) managed to maintain work/life/school balance, good health, and cheerful dispositions but gave up trying to blog frequently.
9) got our riding lawn mower fixed - yippee!

*Gone before I could tell you that he could climb a tree, steal an egg from a nest, carry it in his mouth down the trunk, and devour it in the yard. Cool cat trick!