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Posts Tagged ‘Clinton NJ’

You know how you go to a restaurant for a while, then kind of tire of it, even if it is really nice? Revisiting said restaurant – The Clean Plate in Clinton (NJ) – is what happened recently when a  lovely new client, who happens to be a vegan, and I planned to get together. I am admittedly a wannabe (but still aspiring) vegan, but almost completely vegetarian. The Clean Plate is so named because it serves really clean, often organic, and – whenever possible – locally sourced food, with plenty of choices for both vegetarians and vegans. The menu includes locally raised beef and chicken, as well. Anyone who wants to eat healthy can find something delicious here.

I also often think I’d like to take photos of my wonderful food when I eat out, but somehow it never happens. Happily, Danielle did take a photo to show her daughter, who always likes to see what Mommy eats when she is dining away from home.

We sat outside on this late, still-cool morning at a table in the shade and right next to the river. It was wonderful, as were our dishes.  What you see here, from the top, is my excellent decaf and their Fava-Rite Bowl, a mix of fresh fava beans, asparagus, spinach, new potatoes, and roasted red pepper in a cashew-chive sauce with an over-easy egg and sprouts on top. Yum! Danielle’s dish was a red quinoa wrap with mixed baby greens, their featured hummus, avocado, toasted almonds, and dried figs, with apple cider vinaigrette, served with a side of sweet potato fries. She had Kombucha to drink.

It was all fabulous and we both cleaned our plates!

Accompanying us occasionally was a very friendly pair of not-quite-ducks, eager for a bit of our complimentary popcorn. I say that because these were two Mallards clearly crossed with another bird – a goose, I suspect, based on the markings. The larger of the two, likely the male considering the dark head, had the most amazingly kind face. Neither was pushy, so no need to herd them away, but the smaller female was very quick. The larger male just looked in your eyes and hoped. They did get a little popcorn, but I suspect too much wouldn’t be good for them. But for all we know, they may work this crowd regularly and have adapted. Who knows? They were both very sweet.

Should you be in the area and want some healthy and delicious food, perhaps accompanied by a duck or two, check out The Clean Plate and their menu!

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Perhaps one of the most notable landmarks in Hunterdon County, NJ – if not the most notable – is Clinton’s Red Mill. It is rich in history, the museum grounds host all type of events including historical reenactments and music festivals, and annually, the museum itself  offers one of the best known and most frightening Halloween hauntings for miles around. It is also one of the most photographed landmarks. Meeting a friend in Clinton over the weekend, I took the opportunity of photographing it myself from a few angles.

From the Leigh St. bridge

From the banks of the South Branch of the Raritan River, on which the mill sits

From a small park along the river further north

Should you visit Clinton, it will be hard to miss the Red Mill, but if you check their web site, you can time your visit with one of many events either at the mill or in the lovely town of Clinton. (I see  the museum is showing Hugo outdoors on August 3!)

Note: All photos/drawings/art/images throughout this blog are  © Jeanne Balsam and may not be reproduced without written permission. Thank you! 

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Not too long ago, quite by chance, I came across something that I had completely forgotten I had … a beautiful carved and earthy-looking scarab. I can no longer remember where I got the scarab, but looking at the holes drilled in either end, I thought now would be the perfect time to make it into a striking and inexpensive necklace.

I bought some simple black silk-type cord, but then my imagination kicked in and I started thinking of how nicely a few beads would offset the scarab. So my friend and I coordinated our breakfast with a visit to the fabulous bead store in Clinton (NJ), Beads Extraordinaire. And then came the fun … I needed beads with a large hole to accommodate the diameter of the cord I’d brought, and soon found gorgeous copper beads and some shimmery ones in the palest aqua.

Before you knew it, my friend and one of the store personnel, Angela, had additional suggestions, and soon, my scarab and the beads were carefully arranged on a copper silk cord, and skillfully knotted by Angela so I could adjust the length of the necklace. You can see the results here. In addition, She knotted a black leather cord for another piece I had brought along. And the cost? Beyond reasonable.

If in the neighborhood, stop into Beads Extraordinaire, or check out their web site. Linda, the owner, has an unbelievable selection of exquisite beads of every kind, which truly are an artist’s palette of their own. She also has regular trunk sales of art beads from artisans around the country. Suddenly I wanted to bead!  Well, that’s not likely in my life, but I am thinking of something else I’d like to do ….

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