Saturday, January 31, 2009

My First Pink Saturday

Beverly of How Sweet the Sound hosts Pink Saturdays and I decided to participate for the first time. So it's all about Pink today. I will be off on a day trip to Kennebunk and Kennebunkport, Maine. So while you read my summery feeling post, I will be up in the frozen tundra of Northern New England.I'll probably be all rosy cheeked. But I am sure to have lots of tea to warm me and I will be surrounded by the warmth of my friends in the tea group. Aw, yes! I belong to an afternoon tea group. But that's a post for another time.


Don't you love that teacup? The tea inside is from Jacqueline's Tearoom in Freeport, Maine.It's actually a red tea or rooibos named Autumn. It looks pink in your cup and the flavor is heavenly!




I love these pink ballet shoes. I got them at a store called Sweetbay. A fabulous store but it's closed now. So sad!



First I put them on the table for display but then I decided they would look better hanging.



They're from England. Sometimes I put them on the outside door. I have to be careful of the elements since they're satin.






Just a little bit of pink today for my first Saturday. I'll see you all next Saturday.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Molly and Oscar- A Tale of Two Kitties

Oscar is finally in his forever home. Actually he's been living with Molly and me since December 30th. I guess you can call him my New Year's baby. I am enjoying the new addition to our family. Molly? Not so much. For those of you who want to get up to speed. Go to my very first post entitled "Starting from Scratch". All may look peaceful here but don't let them fool you!
Oscar chases Molly all over the condo. She is certainly getting her exercise. She's 7 years old and he's just 1 year old. Molly is plum exhausted from his antics.

This is Oscar's usual state. Hiding and about to pounce! He still has his wild side. Poor thing has lived in 4 places in his young life. First he was outside in the bitter cold last winter, crying for food scraps in the parking lot of my apartment building. I met him on Valentine's Day night! Then in June when I rescued him I took him straight to the vets. He stayed there
for 2 weeks while I searched for a foster mom for him.
My sister sent out an email blast to all her friends and we found Diane and Michael who had recently lost their 20 year old cat. Diane said she would foster Oscar for 3 months. So off to
Diane's he went. He loved it there. Sleeping on a sheepskin rug, catching an occasional mouse and getting lots of lovin'. He was in kitty heaven. I visited him weekly to keep in touch. Diane and Michael could not have been a better match for Oscar's temperament.
Finally I bought a condo and moved in with Molly. I got her settled and then I was able to finally take Oscar home. It's been an adjustment for all of us. Diane and Michael come and visit and play with Oscar. Molly has learned to ignore him at times and I just love the little, um, not so little guy.


Molly sometimes tries to show him who's the boss!



This is the only safe haven for Molly. I'm sure Oscar could jump up on the sink but for some reason it doesn't appeal to him.




Molly, don't jump! Oscar will calm down, someday!
Stay tuned I'm sure they'll be a future post about the Tale of Two Kitties!










Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad

Meet my Dad. Today is his birthday. We celebrated with dinner at Legal Seafood Restaurant.
Dad had the broiled scallops. He's health conscious and it shows. Isn't he handsome? Some say he resembles Paul Newman. Others remark at how well pressed he is. And if you could see his shoes you would see your reflection in them. In fact, he has on more than one occasion said to me, "take those shoes off I'll polish them for you."

Back to dinner, my sister had the baked schrod and I had the fried clams. I need to be more health conscious. We all shared some chocolate mousse for dessert.

This is Dad 3 years ago at his big birthday with a zero bash. He feigned surprise for the crowd.
We had to tell him about the party because he is a very active man. He is an avid reader, plays free cell on the computer, and most importantly there is golf. He is obsessed with golf. He plays golf almost year round and he still can shoot his age. When anyone has a question on the rules of golf they call him. In fact, he usually has the answer before the TV commentators when there is a rules question during a tournament. He also rates golf courses for the Massachusetts Golf Association and he is an official at tournaments.

Dad is also into genealogy and loves learning about his Irish roots. In fact, the two of us traveled to Ireland for his seventieth birthday. We had the best time exploring the birthplace of our ancestors.

Dad is a WWII veteran and he enjoys going to his naval reunions. He's the one who takes the photos and emails everyone afterwards.


This is a photo from his WWII days. My sister made a video for him for his big birthday party.

My mom now resides in a nursing home. She had a stroke nearly five years ago. She's doing well and he visits her every day. They've been married more than 50 years and they met in junior high school!

The most well mannered, perfectly dressed, devoted man I know. They don't make them like they used to, do they?

So Dad, here's your first blog birthday card.

Love you, Lane

Monday, January 19, 2009

Saying goodbye to Christmas

This year's Christmas season was absoulutely crazy for me. I saved alot of vacation days for December as I always do. This year the days were spent boxing and bagging things to be moved to the new condo. If I wasn't such a pack rat I would have been moved in a long time ago and December could have been spent attending Christmas events and concerts, tree lightings and holiday open houses. So to my mind, Christmas was all messed up this year.

I even worked some of my vacation days and came in to work on Saturdays I was not scheduled to work. So forgive me, if I linger just a little while longer over my Christmas decorations. They are old friends I hate to put away in January. The good thing is it's just me and the kitties in the condo so I can leave my tree up until April if I want to.

So I decided this weekend was the time to pack away the Christmas things. So here goes:

Goodbye Starbucks snowglobe. I'll toast you with the last gingerbread latte of the season.

Goodbye, to the very stylish Dixie Hackett in her faux mink stole. She got a little tipsy from the
cinnamon eggnog. And goodnight to Carol Lynn and Charles, her neighbors who are sitting behind her in the sleigh. They are camera shy.

Ok, this egg I will keep out through the winter because it's sooo special (and unfortunately does not photograph well). My sister gave it to me as a Christmas gift several years ago. Actually it was 1994. I collect Russian lacquer eggs and I have a few with characters from the Nutcracker on them. I gave my sister one with a Snow Queen on it. Russian lacquer eggs are gorgeous. Anyway, my sister knows I love ice skating, gazebos, and anything Victorian so she painted me the most spectacular egg. The egg is made of wood and she painted it black. Then she painted two Victorian ice skaters on a frozen pond on the front of the egg. On the back of the egg? A beautiful gazebo, brown wooded with icicles dripping from it's beams, there's a bridge too and some children skating in the background. This is absolutely my fantasy place where I would want to hold an ice skating party. Do you now how hard it is to paint on a round surface? And the detail of the icicles on the gazebo, oh my goodness! Perfection! My sister has unbelievable artistic talent. The egg is phenomenal and very precious to me. Ok, I just convinced myself it is staying up all year round!




I got this plate at an antiques store in Winchester many years ago. It reminds me of England. One year I used it as the center of my Christmas wreath for my front door. It has a mate but it's packed away, somewhere in a box I hope.

Another gift from my sister. This Christmas she gave me a Jim Shore angel. Since I rescued my kitty Oscar from my building parking lot last June and my other cat, Molly was adopted by me after she was rescued from a trailer park in Hooksett, NH, my sister said I was a kitty angel. So
I proudly display my angel on top of my dining room hutch. I have another kitty angel given to me by my friend Debbi. It was a housewarming gift. So the collection begins.





I love my brass reindeer and he's pulling a brass sleigh. I think he's so elegant. Sometimes he carries ornaments and sometimes candy. I think he was mentioned in a prior post too.


The wooden skates I've had for years and I can't even remember where they came from but I know I like them. And who doesn't love books published by Victoria Magazine? I think I have all of their Christmas books. They used to publish them every year and I have about six of them. I was missing just one year. One time my friend Lisa gave me one of these Christmas books and it was the book for the year I was missing. She didn't even know I collected them. Isn't that a happy accident?





Pottery Barn had a sale on velvet stockings so I bought one for Oscar and a matching one for Molly and had them monogrammed. Don't worry they're mini stockings. As much as I love the kitties I don't think I overindulge them!



Here are the french doors between the living room and dining room. My first Christmas decoration that I put up was the red berry garland you see here. Friends Don and Debbi were helping me move and we decided why not put it up instead of packing it away. This was in November so it was a little early for Christmas.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my Christmas decorations. It's still very wintry outside and so it's been fun to stay inside and reminisce about past Christmases.
Until next time, stay warm wherever you are.







Sunday, January 11, 2009

Fresh memory card and fresh snow

We had another snowstorm last night. I think it has snowed nearly every day since the official start of Winter. The most recent storm did not produce as much snow as expected so the roads were cleared rather easily and I was out and about in no time.
Armed with a shiny new memory card for my Fuji, I headed to Winchester for a photographic journey. If you've read prior posts on this blog you will know that I love Winchester. It is a beautiful town and I thought it would be especially beautiful with freshly fallen snow.

I like to photograph churches in the snow and especially at the holidays. Today,the churches still had their Christmas decorations up which was great.

I love how the snow got lodged in between the stones on the facade of the church.

The church was set up on a hill so I took a view of the "village" below. That tall building is Winchester's Big Ben. That's what we used to call it when we were little.


I met this cutie outside of Starbucks. As fashionable as she was in her little pink coat, she
was not allowed inside Starbucks. I would have let her in.




She was watching me drink my Cafe Mocha. Her owners had left her some food while they
drank their coffee inside.




I told the baristas to make my Mocha real pretty because it was going to be photographed and put on my blog. I think they did a fine job!





The snow really added to the whole Starbucks experience today. Warm inside, cold outside.
Good people watching from my windowside table.





The people were just walking by. No one was sitting on these benches today. Or anytime soon
according to the 5 day forecast. Brrrr!


Even the duck pond had frozen. The ducks must have headed to Starbucks to warm up!



Guess this is where I stop. I don't want the local firefighters to pull me from the ice.
Actually I saw them go out on a call so no risky phototaking today.



Just snow no ice on this side of the street.



Oops, this isn't Winchester. This is my hometown. Our town common is still decorated for
Christmas.



The gazebo is newly built by the Rotary Club, the Town Hall is in back of it. At this point, I was chilled to the bone. The Cafe Mocha was a temporary fix. Time for me to go home and get worked up over the football playoffs. Did I mention the New England Patriots didn't make it
to the playoffs this year? Oh yeah, I think I did! Well it still stings!
Tomorrow it's back to work. A good week to all. We'll talk soon.

































Thursday, January 8, 2009

Winter

Today's weather was beastly. Snow, rain, slush and then freezing rain. The temperature dropped quickly this evening and the result was ice! Ice everywhere! I needed skates to make my way from the garage to my back steps!

I do love Winter but today not so much. I must remind myself why I love Winter. Snowflakes, ice crystals, clean, white snow and ice skating. Keeping this in mind I have for your viewing pleasure a You tube video featuring my favorite skater performing one of my favorite songs. Enjoy!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pbgrkv3hDc

Sunday, January 4, 2009

First Weekend of the New Year

It's now Sunday night and I thought I would share some of the weekend's activities with you.
But first I have to tell you that it snowed again, a few days ago. When I wrote my last post I was not sure if my New Year's Eve party would have to be canceled due to the weather. It wasn't and we all had a good time.

Saturday afternoon, I thought I'd go out and photograph the snow before it melted. Ha, not much chance of any melting as the wind chill was 20 below zero. Winchester, one of my favorite towns, has a duck pond in the center of town so I decided to start there.

It was peaceful, no ducks, and bone chilling cold. Just a few photos and I was outta there! I returned home to get ready for my friend Don's birthday party and off I went out into the cold night. We had a great time with friends and Don was really happy.


Sunday morning some of us got together to celebrate my friend Debbi's birthday. We have a tradition of going out for breakfast for Debbi's birthday and then we usually walk off breakfast at a nearby wildlife sanctuary. We bring bird seed and the birds fly down and take the seed right out of our hands. It's really cool! Today it was again quite cold so no bird feeding. Of course, we did the breakfast part.
We went to one of our favorite breakfast spots, the Village Pancake House. The house was originally built in 1660 in the Saltbox style. Forty years later it was remodeled into an Early American Colonial.

There are seven fireplaces. Lots of little rooms. It's just full of charm.

They serve the usual fare, eggs, pancakes, waffles, etc. Lunch too.

I opted for the cheese omelette, crispy bacon, home fries, hot apples, and...

in lieu of toast, my favorite cinnamon pancakes which I split with Debbi. I had to share with her, she was the birthday girl after all!



Here's where Debbi lives. These birds were sunning themselves on her windowsill.
So we did see birds after all!

I thought this silhouette was interesting.
After breakfast, I visited with my mother at the nursing home. The poor woman
had to watch football with me, which she hates. I think she thought I wouldn't be watching since
MY team, the Patriots, didn't make the playoffs this year but she was wrong.

Later on the winter sky was so colorful, I stopped my car and took a photo. I love a beautiful sunset.
Oops, I forgot to mention my rescue kitty Oscar is home with me after being fostered by a friend since July. The introduction to the new home and my other cat Molly has been a little rocky
and often amusing. But that story deserves a blog post all it's own.
So until next time ....










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