Sunday, December 10, 2017

Celebrating Christmas 2017

We headed to Greg's this morning, along with Wendy, Dan and Jane to celebrate Christmas.  Greg set a lovely table and cooked a great meal in his new Instant Pot.
Jane was all dressed up in her holiday best.
We opened gifts, enjoyed a good meal and good company.  Wendy and Ella read about making felted animals, which was a gift from Auntie Wendy and Uncle Dan.
Turns out it's a lot more time consuming than I would have expected.

Jane was a very good girl but the festivities wore her out.
I need some beauty sleep.
Ella and I snuck away to take selfies, which didn't turn out as well as they did last year.
My favorite, but it's blurry ;o(

Then, of course, much to Dan's dismay, we took the traditional group pictures.
As always, our time together went by too quickly and we were headed home before we knew it.

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Friday, November 24, 2017

Ella Makes Her First Quilt

After spending a wonderful Thanksgiving day in Gorham, I returned today to do some sewing with Ella.  Aunt Paula worked with her this morning, teaching her how to use the sewing machine and I took over when I arrived around 11:00.  

First off, Ella selected her fabrics from my stash of "leftovers" from my previous projects.  She selected quite a nice assortment, then proceeded to iron each piece.  It was much easier once we lowered the board.

She laid the pieces out on the floor in the order she wanted and then proceeded stitching them together.
This is the first two pieces going together with great concentration.  The white with pink swirls was used in the border of her pink polka dot quilt.
She's sewing it to a fabric that was used in one of the monkey quilts; I can't remember if it was hers or her dad's.  There are several strips of Olaf fabrics, used in her Olaf quilt.

We took turns, sewing and ironing throughout the afternoon.  She was very attentive when sewing the final strips together.
Ta Da!
The size was determined by the smallest strip, which was one of the Olaf fabrics and it's not quite large enough to use as a quilt, so Aunt Paula spent tomorrow helping her add a couple of 4" borders and completing the binding.
It was a group project, made with lots of love.  

Well done, Ella! and thanks to Aunt Paula for all her help!  Hopefully, it will be the first of many sewing/quilting projects for Ella ;o)

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Monday, November 6, 2017

What Did You Do Today?

This is what I did...
Forty-two days of dog food!

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Sunday, November 5, 2017


Scored these bad boys for half price at Barnes and Noble.  They are perfect for our afternoon iced coffees!
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Sunday, October 22, 2017

September Weather in October...Woohoo!!!

Drove to Fryeburg for what might be our last bike ride of this year.  It's hard to believe that the temperatures continue to be in the 70's this late in October but we like it and we're trying to take advantage of it!  Admittedly, it was in the 60's today but still sunny and warm.

We like the Mountain Division Trail because it's a decent ride, 4 miles each way, completely paved with some hills and valleys and there's a bathroom at the end.  
I keep thinking I won't take any pictures, because we've ridden this route several times and I've taken lots of pictures, so I don't need any more.  Then I come across something I haven't seen before, life these fall berries.
There were tons of them!  Many people cut the stems and use them in Thanksgiving and Christmas sprays and wreaths, but I'm not one of those.  They do provide some nice color against all the brown this time of year.

There wasn't as much color along the river as I thought there would be.
It took us about 30 minutes to reach the information center, where we used the bathroom and had a snack.  The temp was up to 63*.
We (Bill) discovered this painted rock, which we left right where we found it.
There was some good color on the distant hills and in the parking lot.
One of the nicest stretches of color was on our return trip.
Dan was kind enough to let Titan out for us, so we didn't have to go right home, instead we drove to North Conway.  We did a little shopping and drove to the Mt. Washington Valley scenic overlook.  Surprisingly, there was still a lot of color, including green and there didn't seem to be a lot of leaf drop.
It's too bad the colors never look as good in my pictures as they really are ;o(

We got a snack and iced coffees at the s.l.o.o.o.o.w.e.s.t McDonald's in the world, picked up a couple of things at the grocery store and headed home.

Keep it up Mother Nature!

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Sunday, October 15, 2017

Bradbury Mountain State Park

Although it started out cloudy, we believed the weather prediction for clearing skies and decided to check out the foliage before it was too late.  First, we headed to Freeport to pick up a birthday gift for Dan.  I had a $10 certificate to Beans, so we stopped there to spend it.  HAHA, know how hard it is to spend only $10 at Beans!  I finally discovered a nice dish towel for $9.95 and although, with tax, it totaled $10.50, I got away scott free!

From there it's only about 10 minutes to Bradbury Mountain.  We chose this destination because it's got a good bang for the buck...a short hike, the summit is only 485' above sea level, and the views are decent.

We took the "long" way to the top, The Northern Loop Trail, stopping below the summit for the first foliage views, via the Bluff Trail.  
We backtracked to the NLT, then to the summit, a large, fairly flat area overlooking the woods, all the way to the ocean.  The entire hike only took 35 minutes, including our short stop.
1:48 pm
Although we reached the summit at 1:50, it was still pretty cloudy, but the colors were worth the climb.  It was 66* with a light wind.

We found ourselves a nice, cozy spot on the rocks and had ourselves a snack.  While nearly everyone else was eating apples, we had ourselves cookies from Keeping' It Local. 
They have oatmeal so they're good for us...right?
We stayed until 3:30 and the clouds started breaking up around 2:00.  
1:50 pm...a little blue sky
2:05 pm...some sun lighting up the colors
2:25 pm...clouds moving out!
2:25 pm...lots of blue sky
There were a lot of people, kids, dogs and bees!  The bees LOVED the apples but didn't care for our cookies ;o)  Surprisingly, with bees literally everywhere, no one got stung until we were ready to leave and a super cute little red headed guy, maybe 3-4 was eating an apple when a bee landed on his hand and stung him.  We could hear him screaming half way down the hill.  Poor little guy ;o(

We returned to the car via the Switchback Trail..."very steep with sharp turns"!  Not so much!  Took us about 10 minutes and it wasn't a big deal at all; it was the only place we saw a lot of red.  Apparently, the red color is determined by the amount of rain in the spring.
A nice, relaxing afternoon.

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Thursday, September 21, 2017

Gorham Mtn. and a Spectacular Sunset

Thursday, September 21

We got up around 8:15, were out of the cottage by 10:45.  We parked along the road near the Gorham Mtn. parking area because it was super busy and we expected the parking lot to be full.
We left the trailhead at 11:33 and reached the summit at 12:30 via the Cadillac Cliffs section of the trail.  This plaque along the trail has been polished by volunteers.
It was 68* and mostly sunny but windy when we started but turned into a spectacular day...finally!  We sat among the rocks near the summit, enjoying the heavy surf at high tide thanks to Hurricane Jose.  
Panorama photo
Looking toward Sand Beach
Thankfully Bill brought along a little pick-me-up ;o)
The summit is quite unspectacular, since you don't get the ocean views.
A nice couple from New Jersey took our picture.
We proceeded to The Bowl, where we ate lunch and drank in the sunshine.

Panorama photo...great place for lunch!
We're pretty sure Dan would love to take a swim year!

We returned to the car back over Gorham Mtn, reaching it at 3:28.  We drove into town, got coffees and walked to the park overlooking the harbor, where we sat, drank our coffees and ate oatmeal raisin cookies that we brought with us from Keeping it Local.
Morgan texted to tell us the TV wasn't working, bummer.

We did a little shopping on the way back to the car, stopped by the cottage to grab a beverage and our iPads, then headed to Hadley Point to watch the sunset.  

It was one of the most spectacular sunsets I think I have ever seen!  Unfortunately, my pictures don't do it justice.  It was much more red orange than yellow.
6:30 PM
6:40 PM
6:44 PM
Panorama 6:46 PM
6:47 PM
Panorama 6:48 PM
6:49 PM
6:53 PM
Home tomorrow.

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