Saturday, August 19, 2017

Beyond Expectation: Celebrating American Dream in Brooklyn

My American Dream One Step Closer! Thank you, Everyone!

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft


My Kickstarter campaign met its goal today! Thank you to supporters of my 30-year quest, my American Dream, to get my stories published. They're the fruit of 3 decades of wrestling with life, God and art.

Check out my campaign! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/normahopcraft/great-stories-well-told

Secret: I set my goal $500 lower than the total cost, to keep the goal more do-able. I'll still be out of pocket for $500.

Be a spectacular hero and help bring great stories into the world for readers!!!! Just 15 hours left!!!! You'll never see this request again.

Enjoy some photos from Brooklyn's Prospect Park as I celebrate!!!!!


Packed with picnickers.

An egret? A heron? Something with a long neck, hanging out in the park with all of us.


I swear, this is all in Prospect Park!

The big brown birds aren't geese, they're cygnets, baby swans full grown in just a few months!

He has his own flotation device.

He has his very own rock.

Cascading into the pond.

I'd like to dance in there!! That's how happy I am today! Please RT the Tweet that brought you here? Thanks!!!


Friday, August 18, 2017

Unexpected in Manhattan

American Dream: A quiet garden 

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft


I love this oasis in the middle of Manhattan. I'll tell you where you can find it if you do two things: comment below and Tweet this post. That's all!

You get a bonus if you check out my Kickstarter campaign. Last hours! 93% funded! Just $200 to go!

The purpose is to fulfill my American dream of publishing stories that engage people, as well as teaching just a little and inspiring them!

Please check it out here and consider making a pledge: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/normahopcraft/great-stories-well-told 

Thank you!


A fountain makes delicate water sounds that mask the noise of traffic.



This garden looks beautiful in every season.

There's a pond with catfish and a rubber ducky. He's hidden today.

Watch sparrows take a bird bath. 


Dream of spending time in a garden like this? Comment below and you'll find out how you can!


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Unexpected in Brooklyn

American Dream: Noticing the Unexpected

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft


A tree grows in Brooklyn, and a few other things. I see them if I keep my eyes open.


Like this leaf of an elephant ears plant. Unfurling. On a windy evening. But going at its own pace.

Can you believe there are Victorian houses with gardens in my tough Brooklyn neighborhood?

Hydrangeas shading from pink to blue.

A meeting of the turtle clan in Prospect Park.

As seen on the Q on the way home to Brooklyn. Weird but kinda cute.
How about you? With childlike eyes, what do you see? Comment below!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Dreams of Creativity in Brooklyn

American Dream: Being Creative in Brooklyn

By Norma Hopcraft


Ha! You're in for a treat! More pics of the artistic rooflines in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. 

These rows of brownstones make me think of all the people who live behind the windows, the thousands of lives, people living, dreaming, striving.

Or not.

Some folks don't feel very driven. Maybe they enjoy life more.

As for me, striving to make a dream come true is more fun. I call it my American Dream. Each person's is different.

How do you feel about that? Please comment!

And please share my tweet with your followers -- but only if you love brownstones!



Pics taken in January. The cold weather then may cool you off now.

There are no repeat pics in this blog. Each street is different!





Saturday, July 15, 2017

A Brownstone in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, Anyone?

American Dream: Perhaps a Brownstone in Brooklyn?

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft


Hi, folks! After a short break (a mere nine months) I'm back! 

I have lots to share with you from my favorite haunts in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Fire Island National Seashore, wherever the wind blows me--and soon, Providence, RI, a very cool city.

Today I hope you enjoy these pictures from Sunset Park, Brooklyn. They were taken this winter. They'll help you cool off in summer heat.

BTW, if you like these pics, would you RT the tweet that brought you here? A heart-felt thank you! And please comment below as to how I can help you.


Please enjoy the architectural details under the rooflines, and around the doors and windows.


Each street is different.





These are a cautionary tale -- brownstones that have been covered in vinyl siding. Eewww! Don't ever do this, agreed?

Something to restore your faith in brownstones.
How about you? Would you like to live in one of these classic houses? Please comment!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

American Dream: A Park Near Your Home

My American Dream: City Life -- with a Park (or Two) Nearby

By Norma Jaeger Hopcraft


I've wanted to live in New York City since I was a kid. And now I'm doing it! It has its upsides and downsides. Crowds. Constant brand names trying to grab my attention, on buses, taxis, storefronts, signs. I feel like I'm constantly being sold to. Also, lotta concrete.

But there's upsides. Easy access to free and incredibly excellent events, like outdoor opera in Lincoln Center's plaza. The whole mystique of Manhattan, where I work, and Brooklyn where I live.

I have two parks near me. In Sunset Park, which gives its name to my neighborhood, families hang out on nice evenings and the big entertainment is watching the sun set over New York Harbor, the Statue of Liberty, and the towers of the financial district of Manhattan.

Interesting that we can see the Statue of Liberty from this park: I've sat there for two hours straight and didn't hear English spoken. I love it! We're still attracting people from all over the world. They remind us to dream big.

There's another park, Bush Terminal Park, which offers views of the same vistas but from water level, rather than from atop a big hill.


This jetty extends straight out into New York Harbor.

The towers of the financial district in the distance.

The gritty Brooklyn harbor side.

Manhattan again.

You can see Jersey City competing for tower attention to the left.

This is Bush Terminal.

Entrance to the park.

Irving Bush, who must have had a thriving business.

View at sunset of the financial district of Manhattan from the hill in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

Same view, different sunset.

Different day, post-sunset, as the lights come on. How about you? Got a great park near you? Please tell us, below!!

Sunday, October 9, 2016

American Dream: A Brownstone in Brooklyn

Sunset Park, Brooklyn Is Full of Brownstones

Norma Jaeger Hopcraft



My new neighborhood of Sunset Park is chock full of brownstones. It's got so many that it's applying for National Historic District status. That's something that Park Slope and Williamsburg already have.

I find the rooflines to be fascinating. Each street has a different look. 

I love the details in the wood trim at the top. The brickwork is great, too. If you like my blog, would you sign up to follow it? Thanks!!!


Here's a close-up of another street's brownstones and the profile of the roofline against the sky.

This is a long view of the same street -- you can see the brownstones just go on and on.

Here's the roofline of another street whose brownstones sport bay windows.

This is Fifth Avenue in Sunset Park, the main commercial street. These brownstones have the elegant trim and brickwork, too.

It's just beautiful.

Here's another set of brownstones, with gently rounded bay windows and trim that echoes the curves.
How about you? Do you like historic architecture? Comment below!