Saturday, November 22, 2014


According to a piece I read on Yahoo's news feed, Vermont in the fifth "booziest" state in the nation.  It comes in behind Montana, Alaska, Colorado, and #1 Oregon.

It appears that Vermont is noted for the number of craft breweries per unit of population.  I am not a beer drinker, but I do know about Magic Hat,  Otter Creek, Harpoon, and Long Trail. There are others that I have not heard about as well.  One--Alchemist Heady Topper--is so rare and, therefore, coveted that there is apparently a black market dealing in it.

I guess I am missing out on one of the finer points of being a Vermonter.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


I have been cold for the past month and turning up the furnace did not offer relief so I was not surprised when the conclusion was, "You need a new furnace."

New air conditioner in Florida this past summer, which I was not expecting, and now a new furnace, which I kind of was expecting.  Some repairs were done to the old one in the hopes that it will last through the winter.  Always something, something with home ownership.  Of course the furnace is 50+ years old so I suppose I should not complain too much and a new one will be much, much more efficient.

I would have it done right away except that my fuel and furnace company is down to a one man operation at the moment and he really does not have the time to do it during the height of fuel season.  He did say he would though, should it fail completely and become an emergency.  I am glad my son will be here through the winter while I head to Florida.

That is the nice thing about small town Vermont--such good neighbors.  The fuel man checks the house twice a week when he goes by.  All my immediate neighbors keep a sharp eye on things.  I know who to call when I need help and that is a comfort.

Monday, November 17, 2014


I am good to go for another year.  I had my annual mammogram and received my all clear letter in the mail today.

As with everything else, there is a certain amount of controversy around the need for an annual mammogram.  It's quick and only somewhat uncomfortable in spite of all the jokes to the contrary.  So I will continue to make it a part of my proactive health maintenance since there is the family history.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Why are we neglecting dipping into pockets at Thanksgiving time?

It is just a bit sad that Thanksgiving is becoming the forgotten holiday.

I went to the Gardeners' Supply today and it was a Christmas wonderland.  At the drugstore,  Christmas items shared the better part of an aisle that also included a few shelves worth of Halloween markdowns.

Grocery stores are mentioning Thanksgiving--sales on turkeys and cranberries and pumpkin pie spice.  Otherwise, what is wrong with the entrepreneurial spirit of our country that we have not yet thought of a way to exploit this day of family gathering and gratitude for commercial gain?  Black Friday is as close as we can come?

Come on corporate America!  I have faith in you.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Grand Weekend

The grandchildren have spent the weekend, plus Monday and Tuesday, at grandma's house.

It is not always easy to entertain both a 13 year old girl and a seven year old boy at the same time.  Granddaughter would spend all kinds of time with me if it involved my trailing her through the mall with a credit card always at the ready. Grandson wants nothing to do with going into stores for any reason.

I think it was being traumatized at a young age.  He happily agreed to go to Plateau's Closet with his sister one time only to suffer severe disappointment at not finding the stash of PlayDough he was certain was the purpose of such a place.

Grandson is happy to play games, do crafty projects, read stories, take walks, watch movies, and (best of all) listen to grandma's stories in the "Dane Adventure Series."  As long as he is the center of my attention, he is pretty content.

Uncle Kevin brought Dane a box of cardboard tubes from his job at the coffee roaster a couple of years ago.  Timeless toys.  This trip they they became a military installation with tanks and mortars.

I especially liked the expressions on the soldiers' faces.  This is serious business.

Taking a break (grandma's break time)

Selfies expert.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Aging, Schmaging

In a recent post, gigi-hawaii, wrote about aging in place.  On my walk later that very same day, I passed a nearby house with this sign in front of it:

The number of cars in the drive indicated that there was a small party going on.  I remember when this woman. who still lives this house that she and her husband built right next to the farm they once worked, celebrated birthday #100 last year.  She was written up in the paper and there was a huge community party at the Catholic church.  She is still going strong--aging in place.

It occurred to me that my own mother would have been 101 this past September had she lived.  My mother developed dementia and spent the last few years of her life in a nursing home.  I suppose by definition she was aging out of place.  Dementia is such a strange condition--aging and regressing to infancy all at the same time.

To add to the convergence here, the drain pipe for the kitchen sink sprang a leak. Another little nudge to my thinking about aging in place--definitely not this place.  Unless a good looking plumber comes knocking on the door and wants to marry me, I think I am going to let this house age in its place while I go find another place for myself.  That is a project I will think about next summer.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Around the Corner

As in winter:

I heard a pounding noise outside the window yesterday.  When I went to investigate, the snow plowing company truck was in the driveway and some guys were putting in driveway markers.

I told them to plow the driveway this winter but refrain from putting down sand and gravel.  What a mess that was to clean up this past spring.  It it is icy, my son can use my Prius with the studded tires.  One of his jobs is to run it every so often to keep the battery charged anyway.

There is no snow yet.  Maybe the plowing company is just being prepared, or maybe they know something that I do not, but it has been cold.  I have had to bundle up for my walks.

Even the horses are dressed for the cold.

The trees are bare and the sky is gray.

Winter is around the corner.  Probably no one wants to hear about the progress on my Christmas shopping ( and wrapping) though.  So I won't mention it.