Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas in Song at the Watch Hill Chapel

Last night we enjoyed the annual Christmas in Song event at the Watch Hill Chapel with our friends Mark and Jen. This year it was unseasonably warm and we did not have to wear our thermal underwear or our hats and gloves in the Chapel. The bell ringers, choir and speakers were as good as previous years, and we enjoyed it immensely. 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Sacred Shakers

Earlier in December we were fortunate enough to be able to make a mid-week trip to New Haven to see one of our favorite bands, the Sacred Shakers. They don't play very many gigs and it had been several years since we last saw them. The combination of gospel, country and old-time music was as lively and compelling as we remembered and it was a wonderful heartwarming experience in the coldest, darkest month of the year.

Wildcat Adventure

Last weekend we travelled to New Hampshire to enjoy some early season snow. We decided to go to Wildcat Mountain, near Mount Washington. As you can see below there was just enough snow to enjoy the first day of the season on our snowboards. Our legs were sore after just a few hours, but hopefully we will be able to get in shape for more skiing and snowboarding adventures in the coming months.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

White Thanksgiving in the White Mountains

We spent Thanksgiving at the Chalet in New Hampshire and had a wonderful surprise on Thanksgiving morning.  We awoke to sunny skies and 10" of powder!  We were so pleased we had picked up our Jackson XC ski passes the day before.

We left from the center of Jackson Village, which is a short drive from the Chalet. We skied along the Ellis River on a trail which was mostly untracked. The snow was perfect and we met a few kindred spirits along the way. Some of them kindly set some tracks down for us!  The conditions were superb!

We came home to chicken in the crock-pot which was cooking away while we were on the trail. We enjoyed "roast" chicken, roasted squash, steamed carrots and leeks (from the garden),  and wild rice, followed by gingerbread for dessert.

The rest of the weekend was spent working around the house and garden, trimming some tall trees (trying to improve/maintain our view of the Saco valley).  We even managed a little Christmas shopping in the local outfitters and shops. 

The cats came with us this weekend and seemed to appreciate having some furniture.  This was a big improvement over the last trip they made to the Chalet earlier this year, which offered very little for soft warm places to sit in the sun.

We ended our stay in New Hampshire with a late afternoon ski with a trail headed towards Black and Eagle Mountains.  We consider two days on skis before December 1st a fantastic start to the season.  We have great expectations for the Christmas break!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

We have our ski passes...

Let it snow, let it snow...sing with me!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

How Are You Celebrating World Toilet Day?

Today is world toilet day (really!).  

If you'd like to learn more see:

How are you celebrating?

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Enjoying Fall Color at the Chalet

We closed on our Chalet in New Hampshire on Columbus Day of last year (2013).  The fall colors were well past peak so we didn't have the chance to see fall colors locally.  This year the fall colors have been spectacular.  Photos from the past few weeks capture some of our time enjoying some local trails and color. 

Color near Iron Mountain

Kokee on a trail near the Chalet
Late afternoon color (Kokee's view from her bed)
Kokee in her bed (2nd floor) enjoying fall color
View from trailhead to Iron Mt

Colors along Dundee Road

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Fall /autumn in the White Mountains

It is one year since we purchased our chalet in New Hampshire, and earlier in the month we attended the annual meeting of the homeowners association.  It was a rainy Saturday, so we were happy to spend a few hours meeting our neighbours and figuring out how to ensure that all the houses in the association can rely on having fresh water and clear views for many years to come.

On Saturday afternoon the skies cleared and we set to work creating a drain/soak-away outside the back door to prevent a repeat of the basement flooding that we had last year.  This was duly completed before nightfall and we celebrated with a homecooked meal of stuffed peppers (from the garden at Hangman Hill).  On Sunday the weather was much nicer, so we took a short hike to the top of Iron Mountain to enjoy the views of the New England countryside with the leaves changing color all around us.


Hello Freddie, Goodbye Reggie

We recently decided to change our second car for a newer model.  Reggie the red truck was 10 years old and we were sad to see him go after many years of trusty service. Our new addition is Freddie (Mercury) a sharp looking grey truck with a bigger cab especially for Kokee.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sheri's Fall Trip to Fort Collins, CO

In late July Jerry, Sheri'd dad,  moved to Fort Collins, Colorado to live close to her sister Kerry and her husband Brandon. . Sheri went to visit them in late September.

Sheri, Jerry and Kerry

Big Horn Sheep
 The Aspens
Picnic in the Park
Jerry in his apartment

Jerry now lives in senior community on the outskirts of Fort Collins.  He has a view of Long's Peak in the distance and is 15 minutes from Kerry and Brandon.  He is settling in and is realizing this will be the first winter in 20 years he won't have to plow his driveway!  Kerry and Brandon have worked hard to help Jerry settle into a new place and he seems to be enjoying life in the wild west in a slightly more "urban" environment (after living in Tidioute, PA for 20 years, most anywhere is more urban).

In  late  mid-late September the aspens turn a lovely yellow.  Kerry took Sheri and Jerry to Estes Park to take in the fall colors.  It was a beuatifully clear day and the blue skies off-set the bright gold colors of the aspens beautifully.   Along "trail" there were big horn sheep in Pouter Canyon, Elk and other leaf peeping wildlife.  A picnic in the park with summer like temperatures even at high elevation was a treat!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pink Martini and the von Trapps

The weekend began on Friday evening with a quick dinner at The Washington Street Cafe in New London.  After a nice dinner outside in the late afternoon sun we traveled to UCONN to Jorgenson Theater to see Pink Martini and The von Trapp Family Singers.   The show was excellent and we were pleased that Pink Martini and The von Trapps played together off and on throughout the show.  Pink Martini performed some old favorites, and many from their new album.   The highlight was the finale which included The Lonely Goatherd (from The Sound of Music) followed by the entire audience participating in a congo line around the theater! 

Here a few links to recordings from other performances:

Sunday, September 21, 2014

A short hike to the Zealand hut

A recent trip to New Hampshire included a short hike (5.2 miles round trip) to the Zealand hut.  This cabin is mantained by the Appalachian Mountain Club and is accessed in the summer by a fairly level hike around beaver ponds and waterfalls.  Kokee enjoyed the mud and the swimming, and the cookies and coffee at the hut also added to the enjoyment.  It is quite clear that fall/autumn is in the air and the leaves are starting to change color.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

More views from New Hampshire....

Here are a few more photos from our recent renovation and hiking activities in New Hampshire.

Hiking near the Glen Boulder

The Glen Boulder trail

Kokee cools off in a stream

Sheri cools off with a glass of wine

The new bathroom cabinet

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Update from New Hampshire

We have been having so much fun at the Chalet in New Hampshire there has been little time for blog postings. We spent Labor Day Weekend doing  a little winter preparation work including securing the wood stove and chimney for winter. This involved a series of ladders and ropes, much like the Hillary Step, and of course trips to Lucy Hardware for supplies.  The spare bedroom is officially complete and ready for guests so let us know when you would like to book a reservation.

On Monday, Labor Day, we took a long hike on the Glen Ellis trail which started as an out and back but ended with an extension to the Davis Trail just below the summit of Mt. Washington and on to the Boott Spur Path which took us to Pinkham Notch (a little further north from where we started).   The extra mileage afforded a clear view to the summit, the home of our  friend Marty the Cat who lives at the Observatory on Mt. Washington.  Sheri convinced a nice couple from Massachusetts to give her a lift back to the car making the loop complete.  We all slept well that night, with big smiles our our faces.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Damsons galore!

A few years ago we planted three damson trees so we would be able to enjoy damson preserves and desserts. Yesterday we picked about a third of the fruit on one tree, and we ended up with fifty-pounds of fruit. This will probably make enough jam for the next ten years! If you know anyone who would like some damsons please let us know......

Yoga on the beach

We got up early this morning and headed to the beach for a yoga class. It was a beautiful morning and we enjoyed a refreshing swim after our sequence of sun salutations and downward dogs in front of the waves. A great way to enjoy summer in our part of the world!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Herding Cows at the Cool Breeze Farm

One of the fun aspects of being neighbors to dairy farmers is being asked to help move cows from one field to the next. Kokee stepped out of her retriever role today and was a herding dog.