Thursday, September 18, 2014

Party Time

It was cold Sunday, but that did not dampen party spirits.  It was a good time spent with family and old friends from school days.  And a blazing bonfire!

I wish I had thought to snap my brother's house.  It was built in the 1700's and is on the historical register.  This is a long view of their property.  The have opened a camp ground for bike tours, a large number of which travel nearby Route 100 that extends down the middle of the state.

Check out a nearby attraction here.

Some of the guests play in a ukulele group that my sister-in-law belongs to. (She is an interesting personality!) These guys added some music to the day before the uke-players got started--just as I was leaving, go figure.  My brother has lots of funny stories about the donkeys.

So it was a bit of nostalgia.  Lots of laughing and joking around like we were all still in our twenties.  With the big exception that no one was drinking.  No one was smoking.  Some of us survived on grace alone.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

BoyHood, the Movie

 We watch Mason grow up through his school years right up to the time he leaves for college.  We see his sister, Samantha, leading the way.  And we see his parents, children really themselves in the beginning struggle with their own successes and failures in growing up.

We all liked it, the five of us who went to see it together.  One of my friends said, "I liked it but I don't know why."

It was a different sort of movie...filmed with the same cast over the span of 12 years.  It wasn't a documentary.  It wasn't a story with a clear beginning, middle, climax, ending.  It was maybe more like a series of visits with a cousin in another state.  You see him pretty regularly each summer for a brief visit and get a bit of a snapshot for his life.  You always wish him well: you're are really quite fond of him.  But, you know, you do have your own life to live.  And so it goes.  Life.

It was an impressive undertaking and the final edit was well done.  I would go to see it again.  I would recommend it with two thumbs up.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Where did I put the blankets??

Last Saturday the temperature hit the 90's and humidity made it seem as though I shared quarters with Sponge Bob Squarepants.  Seven days later, 30 degrees (these are Fahrenheit scale, dear non U.S. readers).  It's torture by weather.

I am starting to think about upping my trip to Florida plans for this year!

I have plans to see the movie Boyhood with friends this weekend.  That's the one that took 16 years to film because the point was to show the real progression of growing up.  It has gotten excellent reviews.  Movie and dinner with the girls.

Tomorrow,  my brother is having a get together at his place.  It's meant to be outdoors.  Fortunately,  he has always been into huge bonfires and will have plenty of fire wood on hand because it will probably be needed.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014


Today would have been Mike's 71st birthday.

And it is a gorgeous day.  Really could not ask for a better one.  The sky is a clear, bright blue and the air is crisp with just a hint of fall coolness.  Tonight there will be a super moon rising.

One of Mike's most precious moments was always to sit in the dark and watch the full moon coming up as he sipped a whiskey and soda.  That's what I will do tonight.

I know he will be out there watching.  And probably being slightly distressed that I would ruin his good whiskey with ginger ale instead of club soda.

Always with a book in hand.

Thursday, September 4, 2014


August and September are big birthday months in my family.  I have been busy with some card making.

Dane wanted to make a card during his weekend visit.  I used to have my craft supplies in the laundry room, but earlier this summer I converted Mike's old office into a dedicated craft space. Dane was seeing the transformation for the first time.  His reaction:  "Wow, Grandma, you really girled this place up!"
The distant rumbles were Mike's expression of dismay.

Sunday, August 31, 2014


The Champlain Valley Fair means the end of summer in our area of Vermont.
I took my grand kids last year and my grandson has been talking about it with the anticipation most kids might save for Santa Claus for the past year.

It rolled around again and I was chump enough to agree to take them once again. The age difference between my two grandchildren sometimes makes an outing a challenge.  Also Kristen is entering that stage of wanting distance between herself and her grandmother--or adults generally.  I told her she could invite a friend, leaving me free to concentrate on entertaining Dane.  Or leaving Dane free to entertain me.

We negotiated.  I regular check-in time and spot with the girls, not games that would result in having to drag around prizes until we were leaving, and he and I would take turns picking the activities and rides.  That way we got to see the animals and the agricultural exhibits, ride the ferris wheel, and actually make it to the check-ins.  That way Dane also got me onto to some rides that I thought I was done with my own children no longer needed my constant attention at the fair.

Fair food.


Stomach flipping rides

Strange crowds

A day at the fair.
And now, empty pockets.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Watching Netflix

I just recently signed up again for Netflix.  I signed up once a few years ago and never really got into it, but right now it is like my new best friend.

I have been watching Last Tango in Halifax.  I saw a little bit of it on the first season, but not enough to say I knew entirely what it was about.  Now I am viewing an episode a day and really enjoying it.

I never even heard of the series Rescue Me, but I am enjoying that as well.  It certainly does not give reason for hope in its portrayal of humanity, but there is something about the Dennis Leary character communing with the dead that has me hooked.  There are seven seasons of that to get through.

I also have  Happy Valley  in my line up.

I used to read.  Now I am watching television.  I am not sure that is progress.