Friday, June 11, 2010

August 2009: Thousand Islands and the First Day of School

In August of last year our family went to Thousand Islands, NY. Thousand Islands, NY region that encompasses communities on both sides of the US and Canada border along the St. Lawrence River and the eastern shores of Lake Ontario. The region takes its name from the more than 1000 islands that dot the lake and river along this international waterway. The region extends from Kingson to Cornwall on the Canadian side, and from Oswego to Massena on the US side, reaching inland to the foothills of the Adirondack mountains to embrace the communities that are west and north of the Adirondack Park.
We stayed at the Edgewood resort and our hotel room was right on the St. Lawrence River. We were able to watch the boats, barges, and even canoes go by, it was amazing!

This is a panorama of our view from our balcony.

The Sunset at night was spectacular.

John spent a lot of the down time studying for his residency program and we all enjoyed the views and peace and quiet of the water on the St. Lawerence river.

One of the most amazing parts of the Thousand Islands region is Boldt Castle on Heart Island. At the turn-of-the-century, George C. Boldt, millionaire proprietor of the world famous Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City, set out to build a full size rhineland castle in Alexandria Bay, on picturesque Heart Island. The grandiose structure was to be a display of his love for his wife, Louise. But, in 1904, tragedy struck. Boldt telegraphed the island and commanded the workers to immediately “stop all construction.” Louise had died suddenly. A broken hearted Boldt could not imagine his dream castle without his beloved. Boldt never returned to the island, leaving behind the structure as a monument of his love. For 73 years, the castle and various stone structures were left vacant until Thousand Islands Bridge Authority acquired the property. Since then, several million dollars have been used to restor and rebuild the Castle.

This is our view of the Castle from our room.

Here is Boldt Castle close up.

We took a ferry to see a lot of the different islands, the kids loved the ride and they even let them drive the boat for a bit!
One of the many boat houses we saw.

This is the shortest international bridge. The small island is officially on the US side and the house is on the Canadian side!

There was a house on every island we saw, yes even this tiny one! Boldt Castle's yaught house sits behind it.

We were able to tour the Castle, here is a picture inside and out.

Here we are on the grounds of the Castle. Then on one of our final nights in Thousand Islands we drove up to Clayton, NY and enjoyed an evening there. Clayton was listed in Coastal Living Magazine as the best small town in the Great Lakes. It was gorgeous! Over 18 years ago John served his mission in upstate NY and Watertown, NY up in the Thousand Islands region was one of his areas he stayed in for a few months. It was fun for us to drive around and see where he lived and hear his stories of living there.

On our way home, we drove along the Lake Ontario shoreline and stopped to let the kids play by the water. Here are some shots from us on the shore of lake Ontario.

Lydia loves the water!

Shortly after returning from our vacation the kids started school and one of the highlights for our family this year was Lydia starting all day Kindergarten. She gets to start Kindergarten one year early than she would in any other state because New York’s cut off is December 1st rather than September 1st and with Lydia being a November birthday she barely makes the cut and she is officially the youngest in her class. But she has been able to keep up with her pears remarkably well and we are so proud of her; she is reading and doing math.

Here are their first days of school pictures!


Natalie said...

What an amazing vacation spot! I'm completely envious.

brittanimae said...

What a fantastic trip! I'm so glad that you took the time to blog about it even a year later--it's so important to save those memories! Did I already tell you that we're moving closer to you soon?? I hope we can get together--miss you!

Glenn and Sara said...

Okay Jan,
So I am reading your post on your trip to the 1000 Island region and then the song "Forever Young" starts to play on your blog.For a moment I am transported back in time, remembering our trip out there how many years ago?!LOL! I am so very thankful for great friends and great memories. Miss YOU!