Sunday, January 30, 2011

I Got a Letter

Of all the items that land in my mailbox few are hand written letters. I got two this week. Sweet!

Looks like I have a date at the Skatium. But first, I have some letters to write.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Meet the "Great Eddy"

Have you seen this bird? The rumors are true, this eagle has landed and right in my very own back yard. The Mad Birders of the MRV have posted terrific photos of an immature Bald Eagle seen playing in the valley. Evidently he spent a few days perched around Waitsfield Village, roosting in trees above the "great eddy" section of the river. Hence his name, Great Eddy.

That is the great eddy you see in the header photo of this blog. As a matter of fact, both pictures (header picture and Great Eddy's picture) were taken, same day, same place. There I was down by the river clicking pretty pictures of my village and river while Craig and Jeannie are on the other side, exuberantly (I imagine) snapping photos of the momentous occurrence. Eagles have come home to Vermont. And I did I even have a clue?  Handsome isn't he?

Photo credit: Craig Goss

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Everybody on the BUS!

It's a school day, a Thursday to be precise. The Fayston Elementary kids have finished their lunch, donned their ski/snowboard gear (got your helmet?) and are piling on the bus. There is skiing/boarding to be done and it's off they go to Mad River Glen or Sugarbush. No kidding (in fact, all kids 1st - 6th grade), every Thursday afternoon for 8 weeks throughout the winter.

Didn't grow up here or have children in the school system? Then maybe you're not aware that the Valley elementary schools participate in winter sports programs. With the support of countless volunteers (parents, teachers and neighbors) and the generosity of the resorts our schools get the kids outside and teach them what winter's really all about. In the name of fun physical education, mind you, but hey, a kid's gotta do what a kid's gotta do. Everybody on the bus?

Photo Credit: Justina Boyden

Monday, January 24, 2011

Start Your Engines

Go ahead give it a crank. Cross your fingers, you only have so many tries. It's -20 degrees this morning. The kind of morning your nostrils stick shut and the breath catches in the back of your throat. A morning engines choose not to cooperate (do you blame them?). I have a delivery to make.  Otherwise, I'd still be under the goose down. Here I go.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Mercury's Falling

Remember mercury-in-glass thermometers? I'm not certain the phrase "mercury's falling" is suitable any longer since we've gone digital. Fact is, when googled all I found initially were references to Sting's new album "Mercury Falling" and the demise of the Mercury automobile. There was a time when the term referred to the weather occurrence forecast for this coming weekend. The mercury is falling, the temps are dropping and we are in for an arctic invasion of extremely wicked COLD air. In other words, this weekend will be: "colder than a ............  or cold enough to ............". I'll let you fill in the blanks (careful when you google those). I have other things to fill: the wood stove, the bird feeders, my car's gas tank, the soup pot, the wood bin, my hungry belly and just before sleep, the crack under the back door and another piece of wood in the stove for good measure. I'm ready are you?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Winter's Cache

This past gardening season awarded us armfuls of vegetables we cached away for winter. Into the freezer went blueberries, blackberries tomatoes and beans (and more beans). Into jars went salsas, marinara sauce, more tomatoes, jams, relish, and hot pickled peppers (smoldering hot). Into baskets went garlic, onions, and winter squashes. All of these nicely tucked in the nooks and crannies of our stone cellar underneath the house. And for the past three and half months we have dined happily on them all. Except, for the squashes we so carefully stashed I forgot all about them until yesterday. Down into the cellar I go and hidden way, way back under the stairs (where no light ever shines), I reach into that basket and (please, don't be a pile of moldy, mushy, slop) sweet surprise, I grab hold of a perfectly happy acorn squash.

And it was good enough to eat. ( actually, better than good)

Monday, January 17, 2011

It's a Holiday

This is MLK (Martin Luther King) weekend and the area is buzzing with visiting skiers and everyone else they bring along. They're here, tour buses, furry boots and hollywood shades (ah, such fashions). It feels fun and festive, other than long waits at market checkouts or discovering "we can seat you in 65 minutes" because it never occurred to you to call ahead for dinner reservations. And that's okay, things will be calm tomorrow and I will miss the excitement (for a little while).

I'm heading out the door to ski my backyard. At last the snow pack is deep enough to access my favorite playground, yippee for holiday Mondays.

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.
Martin Luther King, Jr. 
Off we go

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Good Morning

Crisp, clear and -8 degrees this morning, a picture perfect sunrise. As much as I fuss about getting up early (5:30 am), I am seldom disappointed to see the Valley graced in morning light.