2013 Front Garden
2012 Front Steps
Bed and Breakfast sidewalk garden matures
If you subscribe to this blog, you may remember last May’s post about our new front sidewalk and the garden that we planted. It’s May again, and the garden looks spectacular. All of the flowers that we planted last year have spread and the strip is a lush bed of purple and blue. I’ve put last year’s photos next to today’s to show the difference. The phlox subulata has spread and is in full bloom. The bugle weed (Ajuga reptans) has spread in the strip between the street and the sidewalk and choked out any weeds. Dusty Millers (Celosia maritima) have matured into big healthy bushes and make great repeat mounds along the length of the flower bed. I trim them and pinch out the flower buds every few days. Otherwise they will flower and die.
This Spring, we had all of the red inserts on the porch-post brackets replaced. That’s another project that has been waiting for twenty-four years, and we are thrilled. John Hassay of Cape Island Woodwork did the work and we’re very pleased. John also replaced a section of porch balustrade for us and two windows which had disintegrated.
Come visit us to inspect the new work!
2013 Front Steps
Forget Baseball, this is the World Series!
This Saturday, May 11th, the thirtieth annual World Series of Birding will begin right here in Cape May. There will be youth and senior teams as well as the cutthroat competition among the thousands of participants, who raise over six hundred thousand dollars for conservation each year. The event is organized by NJ Audubon Society and will begin at midnight on May 11th and end at midnight May 14th
The World Series of Birding really is worldwide
You may know that Cape May is one of the ten top birding sites in the world. We’ve had guests at Leith Hall from as far as China, Kenya, and Germany for birding both spring and fall. Guided walks and classes start at either the Northwood Center on Lily Lake in Cape May Point, or at the Research and Education center on Route 47 in Cape May Court House.
Give us a call or go online to make reservations for this spring, either to be here for the World Series of Birding, or to take a beautiful and calm guided walk and learn the basics of birding.
Chalfonte Hero thrills visitors
Chalfonte Hotel by Walker Evans
Cape May’s Chalfonte Hotel has been hosting guests for 137 years. And, Karen Fox has documented its fascinating history in her book and in this season’s show at the Carriage House Gallery at the Emlen Physick Estate. Henry Sawyer built the hotel – and his story is unforgettable. He was captured by the confederacy and held in the infamous Libby Prison in Richmond Virginia. He was condemned to die by chance in the cruel “Lottery of Death”, but his wife Harriet would not let that happen. She got to President Lincoln through Secretary of War, Stanton, and Lincoln ordered Henry Sawyer and two other prisoners exchanged for Robert E, Lee’s son plus two others. Harriet saved her beloved Henry, and Cape May got back its Civil War hero and hotelier.
The exhibit opens today, April 26th, and will run through the whole summer.
Henry Washington Sawyer
Check it out when you come to visit us at Leith Hall bed and breakfast.
Yummy Lunch, Yes!
The Carriage House Café and Tearoom at the Emlen Physick Estate in Cape May is opening for another season with a new chef, a new menu, and an expanded take-out service. You can have lunch in the former horse stalls of the Carriage House, where Emlen Physick’s horses used to munch away, or in the striped tent on the patio behind the carriage house. The tent is surrounded by gardens, with a view of the gorgeous Physick house.
If you want to have an elegant afternoon experience in the Cape Maytradition, you can have an “Elegant Afternoon Tea.” If you want a quick lunch and a rest after trudging the streets of Cape May, you can do that too. You can even take out a sandwich, salad, cake or fruit and eat on the picnic table near the carriage house. We’ll take care of breakfast at Leith Hall, now lunch is settled. All you have to decide on is dinner.
Leith Hall hosts murder mystery guests
Bed and Breakfast calm and mayhem at dinner
After your peaceful night and relaxing breakfast at Leith Hall bed and breakfast, prepare for mayhem at lunch or dinner. Murder Mystery Dinners and luncheons will be held on Saturdays April 27 and May 4, and Sundays April 28 and May 5. The mystery will be “A Foul Weather Fiend” presented by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts. After your meal, you can interact with the cast of likely suspects and try your hand as solving the mystery before all is revealed!
Good food, a fun play, and a challenging puzzle can be yours when you stay at Leith Hall bed and breakfast either of these weekends. Make your reservation now!
A Suspicious Character
Posted in BookNow, breakfast, Cape May, Eating, Events, Food, Our Rooms at Leith Hall Bed and Breakfast, Rooms, theater, Things to Do
Tagged Cape May bed and breakfast, Leith Hall, murder mystery dinner, murder mystery luncheon
Not-Haunted bed and breakfast hosts ghost hunters.
An invitation from Leith Hall- Cape May bed and breakfast to come to town this weekend for the Full Moon Ghost Hunt with Ghost One. Saturday, April 27, you can visit the Emlen Physick Estate in the evening with Ghost-One, a high tech ghost- investigative team. You’ll record the voices of the ghosts, look for cold spots, and otherwise track down the elusive beings.
Cape May bed and breakfast – Physick Estate combo event
Afterward, you will all meet in the carriage house for dessert and to discuss your findings. This should be lots of fun and a great evening’s entertainment. Call us at Leith Hall bed and breakfast for reservations.
Spring Festival is Festing!
April 26 through May 5 is Cape May’s Spring Festival. The grounds of the Physick Estate will be hopping with live music, good food, and a crafts and antique show. Spring Festival also includes The Chocolate Championship Contest – where you tour five inns, taste their chocolate specialties, and vote for the best. There are also Winery Cellar tours and tastings and Murder Mystery dinners and lunches, and a private homes tour of houses not usually open to the public.
Saturday, you can even start the day with Victorian dance lessons and end it with a Victorian Ball to show off your new moves.
If you’d like to make reservations at Leith Hall, give us a call (609) 884-1934 or go to our website www.leithhall.com
Looking forward to seeing you again,
Elan and Susan
Posted in Cape May, Eating, Events, Spring Festival, Things to Do, Travel
Tagged chocolate, Chocolate Championship tour and contest, Spring Festival, vintage dance ball, vintage dance lessons, winery tour and tasting
Downton Abbey come to life!
Do you love Downton Abbey? Wish you could live in one of the stately homes of England and hob-nob with the nobs? Come to Cape May for an afternoon tea presented by the Friends of the Physick Estate called Upton Abbey. There will be prizes for the best British accent, and for the best period costume. Downton Abbey Trivia will test your knowledge of the shows details.
While you’re in town you can immerse yourself in the period with trolley tours of out twelve hundred Victorian and Edwardian houses, tours of the Emlen Physick Estate (the richest guy in town in those days), and stay at Leith Hall with our period rooms and furnishings.
The Upton Abbey tea will be Friday, April 19th at 3 P.M. at the Physick Estate Carriage House Café and Tearoom.If you miss this time, keep in touch – it will be offered again.
Posted in Cape May, Eating, Events, Food, history, Our Rooms at Leith Hall Bed and Breakfast, Teatime, Things to Do, Trivia, Trivia contest
Tagged afternoon tea, Downton Abbey, Edwardian, Edwardian Cape May, Emlen Physick Estate, Upton Abbey, Victorian Cape May
I made these chocolate peppermint cookies for tea at Leith Hall last week and Bill from Absecon paid me a great compliment. He said that they were the best chocolate cookies he had ever had, and he doesn’t even like sweets!. They are very easy to make.
Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
1 ¼ cup (2 1/2 sticks) butter
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla paste
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 cups flour
¾ cup Dutch cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
Icing – Melt together 1 cup of bittersweet chocolate and 1/2 stick butter plus 1 tablespoon light corn syrup. Add 1 tablespoon peppermint extract. Put one dollop on each cookie.
Beat the butter and sugar together until they are fluffy. Beat in eggs and extracts. Mix the flour, cocoa, soda and salt together and beat the mixture into the butter mixture. Drop by tablespoons full onto parchment lined cookie sheets. I use a scoop to get exactly even size domes. Bake for 9 minutes at 350F. Cool on cookie sheets, then again on cookie racks.
Posted in Cape May, desserts, Eating, Food, recipe, Teatime
Tagged afternoon tea, Cape May, chocolate, dessert, dessert recipes, Food
Monarchs and Hummingbirds at the Nature Center of Cape May
The Nature Center of Cape May will have lots of offerings to celebrate Earth Day, April 20th. You may know that Cape May is famous for its Monarch Butterflies, migrating on their way to and from Yucatan in Mexico. You may not know that they need milkweed to survive. Pat Sutton will show you how to encourage a variety of milkweed species. The session begins at 10:30 at the Nature Center of Cape May
Pat Sutton will also offer a session about ruby-throated Hummingbirds that same afternoon starting at 1:00 P.M.. Learn how to create a hummingbird garden.
April 20 is Earth Day
If you bring your garden tools, you can help deadhead, weed and prune the Nature Center’s gardens and participate in Clean Ocean Action’s annual Beach Sweeps. This will be just the beginning of the season’s offerings at the Nature Center and heralds the start of Salt Marsh Safari – beginning April 27 – the Nature Center’s ever-popular exploration of the shore.
Of course, as always, please come stay with us at Leith Hall bed and breakfast.
Posted in Birding, Cape May, Events, flowers, gardening, Things to Do, Vacation
Tagged birding, butterflies, hummingbirds, monarch butterflies, New Jersey, ruby throated hummingbirds, Spring Festival, travel, vacation, wildlife gardens