Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Christmas Village 2011

My Christmas village has been a passion since about 2004. My sister Julia and I were shopping with our husbands in The Dalles, Oregon. We were in JoAnn Fabrics and they were having a two-for-one sale on their Christmas houses. It didn't take much to persuade me to come home with my first four houses even though they didn't exactly fit my budget. The collection has grown and grown and grown. Members of my family, including Julia, have helped add to it over the years. Cynthia and Derlyn have been especially helpful. I apologize for some of the blurry pictures.
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Monday, January 3, 2011

Holiday Season 2010

Yes we are eating Thanksgiving dinner in the garage. When so many of us are here, there's no other place. We had a great day. We did a garbage can turkey which was a technique taught to us in Vermont by the Cochrans. Yummy. This is part of the crowd. The two favorite activities of the day besides eating were playing Uncle Jeff's Kinect and using cell phones. What is the world coming to?
We continued favorite traditions such as the making of the gingerbread houses:

Rollerskating with the Gunter family in Richland

Decorating the house.

Resting and relaxing

And happy Christmas morning

We're ready now to get back to our routine. We're remodeling the upstairs bathroom which is much harder than we anticipated. We're grateful for the joy we've had during the holidays with our family gathered round. We missed having Janeen and her family and Jennie and her family here. How joyful the celebration of the birth of our Savior is when we share it with family and friends.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Home again, Home again Jiggity Jig

Sorry to be so long in getting to this post. We've been home for a month now and Wow! have we been busy. We told the grandkids we'd be home by Halloween and we made it! These were our only trick or treaters this year. For those of you who don't know, these are Jaime's children who live next door. I've made a Smilebox of our trip home. We thoroughly enjoyed the trip.

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Signs of Vermont

Although we've been home now for over a week and life is flying by at its furious pace again, I still have some things I want to share. While we were there I saw many signs that I'm pretty sure I'd never seen in Washington. Sorry for the lopsidedness of the signs, I had to snap them real quickly from the car.

I never did find my favorite sign when I was able to snap a picture. We saw it in a rather snobby neighborhood in Manchester, NH. It read: DOG FOULING NOT PERMITTED IN THIS NEIGHBORHOOD. It then outlined the steps to be taken if this heinous crime occured.

Have a great day.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Naked Warrior, et al

When we first moved to South Barre, my sister asked if it is a "quaint New England town like you read about in all the murder mysteries". I assured her that it wasn't. Quaint, yes, but Barre is a town with some problems. Barre is an old town and full of interesting buildings and "characters". I would have loved to take pictures of some of those characters like the grizzled paper boy who carried a bag of newspapers on both shoulders. The warrior always interested me because of the various patterns the rain and snow made on him. In a snowstorm he always wore a little tophat. Please excuse the church pictures. The originals looked okay but I couldn't make them all fit. There are many churches in Barre.

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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Mount Washington Otra Vez

Some of you will remember that we rode The Cog to the top of Mt. Washington, the highest point in New England. Long before we had heard of the cog we had heard of the road to the top of the mountain. Tom & Julia (my sister) had regaled us with tales of their harrowing ride to the top in wind and rain. Mt. Washington boasts of having the worst weather in the world. However, my sweet husband was determined to get the This Car has Climbed to the Top of Mt. Washington bumper sticker so we went on Labor Day weekend.

At first it was an easy climb to the top.

A little harder.

At the ticket booth there were signs warning that the wind was blowing at 65 mph at the top, but undaunted we continued. It was a lark for the driver to whose arm I was clinging for dear life. I couldn't even look down--I pointed my camera in the general direction of the window and clicked. My heart was hammering as we continued to climb and the conditions worsened.

At the top, visibility was zero or next to it. The parking lot is about 100 ft below the observatory and you have to climb up--and I do mean up! Garth was hurrying up the stairs because the wind and rain were so bad and I wasn't far behind. To say it was a breathtaking experience is a gross understatement. I finally made it into the observatory, but had to sit for nearly fifteen minutes to get my breath back. Of course, we couldn't take any pictures because of the thick fog. The ride down was a breeze--I kept my eyes closed.

This view at the bottom reminded us of our adventure.

Bumper sticker in hand, we treated ourselves to lunch at the historic Mount Washington Hotel built in 1902. A very formal wedding was taking place and we felt a little out of place. Not for long, however, because there were others in the dining area who were also in jeans. We felt transformed to the 20s and the view of the White Mountains was spectacular. This was a day to write home about.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

In Pursuit of the Wild Goose

Between the suggestions of our good friend Connie, tourist brochures, and something in the records we often go on little trips on Saturday. Texas Falls, which you see in the picture, is the most photographed spot in Vermont according to the Internet. Connie has suggested several times that it's the perfect picnic spot. Nearby, she remembered was the house where Robert Frost, New England's favorite poet, wrote his famous poem Stopping By the Woods. So, off we went. Texas Falls is certainly in a beautiful location but we didn't get to see it because the bridge from which you view the falls is currently being rebuilt. The roads in the area were being repaved and we never did find the Robert Frost house.
Last week, we made a trip again to Bennington on official business and discovered that the aforementioned home is actually in Shaftsbury which is a hop, skip and jump from Bennington and in our mission.

Old First Church in Bennnington where Frost is buried.

Robert Frost's grave. The trees shaded this headstone.

We often notice the inclusion of a pew at the local church in a will or inventory. Notice the cushions and pillow.

The high podium is used for special occasions.

Robert Frost's home in Shaftsbury.

It was exciting to see the actual first draft of the poem which was written on a very hot July day, incidentally. This is the most widely read of his poems and he said he didn't like teachers to find special, hidden messages in the poem. The site is beautiful. Robert was a gentleman farmer who loved the thought of farming, but not the work. He and his son planted 1,000 apple trees on this farm.
We're on the downhill run of our mission--seven weeks left. We're trying to finish our current project. We will miss Vermont when we have to leave, but we are anxious to be home.