Sunday, March 24, 2019

Natura Obscura and the Cabinet of Curiosities



My husband and I, and our daughter and granddaughter, recently attended an intriguing temporary exhibit inside the Museum of Outdoor Arts (MOA) in Englewood, Colorado, called Natura Obscura” which covers approximately 5,000 square feet of the Englewood museum. MOA designed and produced it with Prismajic, a Denver group that creates immersive environments.  (All photos and photo collages will enlarge if clicked on)


Natura Obscura means "Hidden Nature." The exhibit was years in the making, created by over thirty artists.  Natura Obscura is a surrealist walk through the forest, that combines art, sculpture, and the latest in virtual, augmented, and digital technologies. 


Before entering the exhibit we were asked to download a special app. Once inside we could activate the app over carved wooden symbols to read more information about the exhibit and in some areas "see" more features that were hidden otherwise.


We were also given small blacklight flashlights to use, which illuminated many of the structures inside and revealed quotes about nature.


One of the interactive features was a hall of mirrors and sound that changed colors and graphics and also had different moving images on screens that were activated as we walked by.



In another room, we were able to swing under a sky filled with clouds, birds and owls "flying" overhead as a thunderstorm approached.


If one took the time to walk slowly through the Natura Obscura exhibit, really look around and use the blacklight flashlight and app then the experience was magical.  It required the use of our imagination and senses. The more we explored, the more we discovered.  It was our first time participating in an interactive art exhibit and we really enjoyed it!


A permanent exhibit in the Museum of Outdoor Art, called  "A Cabinet of Curiosities and Impossibilities" was also included in the Natura Obscura admission price. Originally developed in 2010 by Lonnie Hanzon, MOA’s Cabinet of Curiosities and Impossibilities is a whimsical immersive exhibition showcasing the talents of various artists in a collaborative installation revealing unique stories, ephemera, and radiant displays.  

 I have always been fascinated by the Victorian era habit of saving and displaying natural specimens, fossils, artifacts, and oddities, and I have my own cabinet of curiosities on Pinterest, so I was very intrigued to see what would be included in this exhibit!



Again, in this exhibit, the more we looked around the more we saw...



...and there was so much to see!


There were many detailed exhibits, many of them fairy tale oriented...


...like this collection for Cinderella...


...or this one for Little Red Riding Hood.


One of our favorites displays was of Alice in Wonderland


At the bottom of the cabinet was a little door--the size of a shrunken Alice who drank the magic fluid in the story. When my granddaughter opened the door and peeked in she saw a small garden scene and another door into Wonderland!   It was the perfect detail to surprise and enchant a young child!


Click to enlarge this photo collage to read about the interesting history behind this antique clock in the exhibit


All in all, it was a fun afternoon exploring both Obscura Natura and The Cabinet of Impossibilities and Curiosities!

Here is some information if you are in the Denver area and want to see the exhibit:

Location:
Museum of Outdoor Arts
(INDOOR Museum location)
Englewood Civic Center Building, 2nd Floor
1000 Englewood Parkway #2-230
Englewood, CO 80110

Open January 11 – and now extended to September 29th, 2019

Monday- Closed
Tuesday-Wednesday: 10am to 6pm
Thursday: 10am to 9pm
Friday-Saturday: 10am to 10pm
Sunday: 10am to 5pm
*The event will close promptly at the posted close time. Please allow yourself enough time to enjoy the installation.

You can also find me on 


I'm linking this post to the following blog events:

Amaze Me MondayMosaic Monday, All SeasonsBlue Monday,  Through My Lens MondayHeart and Soul Link UpInspiration Monday, Blogging GrandmothersHearth, and Soul Link PartyYou Are the Star Blog HopGood Random FunNature NotesGrand SocialTravel Photos, Photo Tunes, Happiness Is HomemadeTuesday TreasuresOur World TuesdayRuby TuesdayTuesdays With A TwistWordless Wednesday on a TuesdaySay Cheese!,  Party in Your PJ'sWordless WednesdayNanahood WWOh My Heartsie Girl's Wonderful Wednesday, Your Whims WednesdayWednesday Around the WorldWonderful Wednesday Little Things Thursday,Thankful ThursdayThursday Encouraging Hearts and HomeThursday Favorite Things,  Pretty Pintastic PartyFriendship FridaysFriday Photo JournalSkywatch Friday, Pink SaturdaySaturday CrittersOver the MoonHappiness Is HomemadeWandering Camera


Bookmark and Share

Monday, March 11, 2019

Rosenberg's Bagels and Delicatessen in Denver



When friends in Colorado ask me what I miss the most about not living in New York City, I always tell them that besides family and friends that still live in New York the thing I miss the most is the diversity of the food available in New York City. I'll admit that I am a "foodie" and love to eat and will try almost any cuisine. New York City had a plethora of large and small independent restaurants with almost every cuisine of the world. When we moved to the Denver suburbs we sadly found mainly chain restaurants in our area which were not very enticing. However, as Denver grows in population--over 100,000 people moved to the city in the six years that we've lived here--more independent and unique restaurants have followed. My husband and I look forward every February to the annual Denver Restaurant Week promotion where hundreds of Denver’s top restaurants offer multi-course dinners for three tasty prices: $25, $35 or $45.  We try to pick a few new places to visit each year and have many now that are our favorites, many with international cuisines.


Recently, My husband and I and our daughter visited a deli in the Five Points neighborhood of Denver, which is one of the oldest neighborhoods and one of the fastest growing for Denver in both redevelopment and population. We were there on another errand but realized as lunchtime approached that we were close to Rosenberg's Bagels and Delicatessen, located at 735 East 26th Avenue, Denver. It was a place we heard about but haven't had a chance to visit up to now. Living most of our lives in Brooklyn, New York, we love bagels and all its usual accompaniments and we heard theirs were the best in Denver!



We were not disappointed!

Owner Joshua Pollack was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City. After graduating from high school, he took his love for food and family west, to study at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he met his wife, Kara, who helps him run the deli. Joshua missed classic New York City food and decided to open his own bagel shop and deli, naming it after his mother, Karen Rosenberg Pollack.  Joshua figured out how to replicate the taste of New York City water that makes his daily fresh baked bagels one-of-a-kind in Denver.  They are both soft and chewy--the perfect NY style bagels! He also has fish smoked and cured in house, delicious salads, high-end coffee, pastries and oh, so much more!


Rosenberg's had the look and feel of a New York Bagel shop, with some seating in the back of the store. As we looked at the bagels we immediately felt our gastric juices flowing and our stomachs announcing it was time to eat!  Rosenberg's is open 6AM to 3PM Tuesday through Sunday and has a good variety of bagel sandwiches for breakfast or lunch on their menu--view menu here.


My husband ordered the "Wings of Pastrami" bagel sandwich (photo upper left in the photo) which was shredded pastrami omelet, melted three-cheese blend, served on with his choice of an onion bagel,

I had the "Leo" which was scrambled lox, eggs, and onions, with plain cream cheese on my choice of a whole wheat bagel (photo lower left)

Our daughter had a pumpernickel bagel with a plain cream cheese "schmear" (photo lower right)

My husband and I also shared a Black and White cookie--so good! (photo upper right)  Years ago I posted a New York Times recipe for Black and White Cookie on this linkYou can not be a native New Yorker without having eaten a Black and White cookie at least once in your life!


Rosenberg's also sells a variety of homemade cream cheeses and salad spreads (click on the photo to enlarge)...


...fish such as gravlax, smoked salmon, kippered salmon, sable, smoked sturgeon, smoked whitefish, creamed and pickled herring, and seasonal smoked fish.



 They also sell knishes, kugels, assorted cookies, and other pastries...


...and freshly baked rye bread, and challah loaves and rolls...


...as well as New York style pastrami, corned beef, turkey, habanero bacon, maple smoked bacon and ham. 

Since Jewish kosher dietary laws prohibit the use of pork products and mixing meat and dairy products, Rosenberg's also has another location at 942 S. Monaco Parkway in Denver that is strictly kosher and offers fish and cream cheese spreads, but no meat. Their hours are Sunday-Thursday: 7Am-3PM, Friday: 7 AM- 4PM
and Saturday: Closed.


Of course, we did not just eat bagel sandwiches at Rosenberg's--we also bought a baker's dozen bagels and plain cream cheese to take home with us. What a treat!


Meanwhile, Colorado has had a very cold and snowy winter so far. These deer who paraded through my backyard one day all were wearing their heavier winter furs.



When we drove past the Coors brewery in Golden, Colorado, one day there was lots of steam rising up into the frigid air. 


The Colorado front range has had its share of snow, but the high Rockies has had record-breaking snowfall this winter with avalanche danger the highest it has been for many decades. Sadly, some deaths have occurred from avalanches, including a young man helping to remove snow off a roof in Crested Butte. March is usually Colorado's snowiest month and it can snow well up until June. As you can imagine, many of us are hoping spring weather comes sooner!


You can also find me on 


I'm linking this post to the following blog events:

Amaze Me MondayMosaic Monday, All SeasonsBlue Monday,  Through My Lens Monday, Heart and Soul Link UpInspiration Monday, Blogging GrandmothersHearth, and Soul Link PartyYou Are the Star Blog HopGood Random FunNature NotesGrand SocialTravel Photos, Photo Tunes, Happiness Is HomemadeTuesday TreasuresOur World TuesdayRuby TuesdayTuesdays With A TwistWordless Wednesday on a TuesdaySay Cheese!,  Party in Your PJ'sWordless WednesdayNanahood WWOh My Heartsie Girl's Wonderful Wednesday, Your Whims WednesdayWednesday Around the WorldWonderful Wednesday Little Things Thursday,Thankful ThursdayThursday Encouraging Hearts and HomeThursday Favorite Things,  Pretty Pintastic PartyFriendship FridaysFriday Photo JournalSkywatch Friday, Pink SaturdaySaturday CrittersOver the MoonHappiness Is HomemadeWandering Camera

Bookmark and Share

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Old and Abandoned



What is it about old and abandoned barns and buildings that is so alluring? Is it that they stand steadfastly through the elements, refusing to allow abandonment and neglect to prevent them from telling a story? (All photos and photo collages can be enlarged for easier viewing if clicked on)


Do they show a pioneer spirit that proudly attests to a time of hard work and spartan simplicity? While others are more recent abandonments from hard times?


Are they the vessels that hold on to lost dreams?


Were they left to rust and rot because they wore out their usefulness...


...or did they meet with a disaster?



Whenever I see one of these sad vestiges of the past in my journey's around Colorado, I try to stop to take a photo of it. I want to show it a little love and attention before it disappears from the landscape. 


There are also entire "ghost towns" in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, which are mostly abandoned mining towns. I blogged about our visit one recent spring to Independence Ghost Town which you can read about on this link.


Also, a few years ago I blogged about Southpark City in Fairplay, Colorado.  It was created in the late 1950s by a group of citizens concerned that the old mining and ghost towns of Park County were being dismantled and destroyed, so they decided to save as many buildings as possible, move them to one area, and recreate a replica 1800s gold mine town. Buildings were brought in from the Mosquito Range, Alma, Leavick, Buckskin, and Montgomery. Click here to read that post and see these treasures preserved for all to visit. Thankfully, these original buildings from America's early Western frontier history were preserved, including many artifacts that are displayed inside them.


One of my favorite buildings of all in Colorado are the ruins of the historic pioneer Bradford Perley House that is located in the heart of my own community of Ken Caryl Ranch.


The back of the structure is the ruins of the original house that Robert Boyles Bradford built in 1860 on land he obtained along the foothills of the front range, where he had hoped to establish his "Bradford City." Bradford left the Russell, Majors and Waddell partnership (founders of the Pony Express) in Denver in 1861, and lived full time in his stone cabin, where he raised cattle and turnips, potatoes, apples, and peaches. Bradford also ran an enterprise from this location of his Bradford Wagon Toll Road that led up into the mountains. Miners and ranchers would travel from Denver, stay at the Bradford House, then travel up the Bradford Toll Road, at a cost of $1.50 per wagon, into the mountains.



In 1872 Bradford added on to the house, with a larger eastern entrance, and patterned it after a southern style mansion. It featured eighteen-inch walls made from locally quarried hand cut sandstones and had board floors and a shingled roof. Bradford remained in his house until his death on December 29, 1876, and his wife Fannie gave up the ranch in 1878. Later, James Adams Perley purchased the property in 1895. He was a direct descendant of John Adams and John Quincy Adams. Perley was a dairy farmer from Vermont, who came west with the gold rush. He eventually returned to dairy farming, when he bought the Bradford property. Perley died in 1926 when the house was then sold to John C. Shaffer, who already owned some of the surrounding lands.
Sadly, a fire destroyed the wooded aspects of the Bradford Perley House in 1967, and only the stone frame was left standing.  I wrote more about the history of the Bradford Perley house on a prior blog post which you can read on this link 

Today, the Ken Caryl Historical Society members are the stewards watching over the Bradford Perley House and its surviving apple orchard. We help maintain the properties and conduct tours for interested parties and schoolchildren who are learning about their local history. We are preserving it for future generations to learn about those who came to this area of Colorado in pioneer days.  It may be old, but it is no longer abandoned. We've kept its stories alive!

You can also find me on 


I'm linking this post to the following blog events:

Amaze Me MondayMosaic Monday, All SeasonsBlue Monday,  Through My Lens MondayInspiration Monday, Blogging GrandmothersHearth, and Soul Link PartyYou Are the Star Blog HopGood Random FunNature NotesGrand SocialTravel Photos, Photo Tunes, Happiness Is HomemadeTuesday TreasuresOur World TuesdayRuby TuesdayTuesdays With A TwistWordless Wednesday on a TuesdaySay Cheese!,  Party in Your PJ'sWordless WednesdayNanahood WWOh My Heartsie Girl's Wonderful Wednesday, Your Whims WednesdayWednesday Around the WorldWonderful Wednesday Little Things Thursday,Thankful ThursdayThursday Encouraging Hearts and HomeThursday Favorite Things,  Pretty Pintastic PartyFriendship FridaysFriday Photo JournalSkywatch Friday, Pink SaturdaySaturday CrittersOver the MoonHappiness Is HomemadeWandering Camera

Bookmark and Share

Monday, February 25, 2019

The Hiwan Homestead Museum


Hiwan Homestead Museum, located in Evergreen, Colorado, is a magnificent, 25-room log lodge, built between 1880 and 1942, and includes three other original buildingswhich are now used as a museum and exhibit space.


I visited Hiwan Homestead Museum on different occasions during last summer, and especially enjoyed the excellent docent tour when I went with a group.  

Hiwan Homestead was a mountain retreat for Mary Neosho Williams, a Civil War widow, and her daughter Josepha in the 1890s. They were among the aristocratic society of Denver who camped at Evergreen. They acquired a simple log structure and hired John “Jock” Spence, a Scottish carpenter, to convert it into a summer cottage, and over the years added on to the initial structure. The property was named Camp Neosho after Mrs. Williams’ middle name.


Overnight guests of Mary Neosho Williams would stay in tents, comfortably equipped with wood floors, stoves, and double canvas walls.  In 1889, Josepha graduated from Gross Medical School in Denver and became one of Colorado’s first women doctors. Seven years later, Josepha married Canon Charles Winfred Douglas, an Episcopal clergyman who achieved world acclaim for his musical work.


The Williams/Douglas families would hold lavish parties at their mountain retreat and one of their famous guests who stayed at Camp Neosho in 1931was the poet Robert Frost.


Josepha Douglas died in 1938 and the house was sold to Tulsa oilman, Darst Buchanan. It grew to 15,000 acres over the years. His wife renamed the land Hiwan Ranch. Buchanan’s Hiwan Hereford cattle were known throughout the country and won many stock show prizes. Six generations of notable families lived in this rustic mountain lodge before it was developed as a museum by Jefferson County Open Space in 1974.


Many of the restored rooms in the Hiwan Homestead are furnished with the original residents' belongings, including a collection of southwestern Indian artifacts.


Canon Charles Winfred Douglas, whose portrait hangs on one of the fireplaces in Hiwan Homestead, was largely responsible for bringing plainsong, the ancient music of liturgical worship, into general use, and with it the full choral service in Episcopal worship.


One of my favorite rooms in the Hiwas Homestead was the kitchen, which was frozen in time circa the 1930s


There were so many wonderful artifacts to look at in the kitchen, including a wonderful vintage cookbook collection...



...and vintage spice and condiment containers. 


Schoolchildren often tour Hiwan House to learn about the early days of Colorado, and they make pioneer style journey cakes in the kitchen.



One of the visits I made to Hiwan Homestead Museum was to see an exhibit going on at the time about Chief Colorow, a Native American who was active in the area where I now live.  I've blogged more about him, and the red rock front range cave he liked to use as a shelter, on this blog post.


It was a wonderful exhibit of both photographs and artifacts of the Utes and early settlers in Colorado.


The grounds of Hiwan Homestead Museum are much smaller now than when it was a functioning ranch but are beautifully maintained.




Two of the beautiful sculptures on display on the grounds.




Above is a short video about Hiwan Homestead from the Jefferson County website.  

I hope you enjoyed learning more about this wonderful piece of old Colorado history preserved for all time.

The Hiwan Homestead is located at:
28473 Meadow Drive
Evergreen, CO 80439

Admission is free

 For large group tours contact the museum at 720-497-7650 
Museum Hours: Tuesday – Friday: Noon - 4:00 pm Saturday & Sunday: Noon – 4:30 pm

You can also find me on 


I'm linking this post to the following blog events:

Amaze Me MondayMosaic Monday, All SeasonsBlue Monday,  Through My Lens MondayInspiration Monday, Blogging GrandmothersHearth, and Soul Link PartyYou Are the Star Blog HopGood Random FunNature NotesGrand SocialTravel Photos, Photo Tunes, Happiness Is HomemadeTuesday TreasuresOur World TuesdayRuby TuesdayTuesdays With A Twist, Wordless Wednesday on a Tuesday, Say Cheese!,  Party in Your PJ'sWordless WednesdayNanahood WWOh My Heartsie Girl's Wonderful Wednesday, Your Whims WednesdayWednesday Around the WorldWonderful Wednesday Little Things Thursday,Thankful Thursday, Thursday Encouraging Hearts and HomeThursday Favorite Things,  Pretty Pintastic PartyFriendship FridaysFriday Photo JournalSkywatch Friday, Pink SaturdaySaturday CrittersOver the MoonHappiness Is Homemade, Wandering Camera

Bookmark and Share