Thursday, September 30, 2010

Chicken Soup...

There's no doubt about my magic today...

"Chicken Soup for the Soul, Christmas Magic," came out today and my daughter, Laurie Higgins, is one of their featured writers.  Her story is "Pajama Day," and this is her first published book.  She is an award-winning free lance writer and a journalist for the Cape Cod Times and the Cape Codder newspapers.  She is also the best daughter any mom could hope for.  Congratulations Laurie! 

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Very Vermont...

In my opinion there is no place like Vermont this time of year.  I know other places have beautiful foliage but Vermont just seems to have the right combination of large, mature maple trees, dirt roads, and stone walls.  The tourists are coming this weekend for sure.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Another Rainy Day...

And boy do we need it!

It has been such a dry summer.  The up side of that is we had red tomatoes early this year.  Usually we get no tomatoes at our high elevation because of the ten degree cooler heat inversion principle.  Normally, air temperature decreases at a rate of 3.5°F for every 1000 feet you climb into the atmosphere.   If you live on a mountain, this surely affects summer vegetable crops.

This might be the first year I have not made green tomato relish.  When I make it, I call it lemonade from lemons because who wouldn't rather have a juicy red tomato for lunch than a whole bunch of green ones?  

Our first frost usually happens around September 26 so we are a bit late this year thus allowing me a few more pictures of the garden before it is no more.  These flowers are growing in my friend Gail's vegetable garden and like her vegetables, these are on their last legs.  I wish I could bottle up the smell in this autumn menagerie, it is heavenly.   

Monday, September 27, 2010


It is such a gloomy day.  Rain, rain, rain so I am out and about looking for something to chase the gloom away.  I sure found it.  Pretend you are a fairy strolling through a corn field when all of a sudden a huge blob of orange confronts you.  For a fairy this would mean 459 pies.  She's not scared of a little work but she does need someone to help her drag this thing out of the field.  There will be fresh pumpkin pies for Thanksgiving this year.  And you are all invited.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


Guess what's next!

I just love applesauce.  And its easy peasy to make.  I will qualify that by saying,  "if you have a pressure canner."  It seems I have come up in the world since my farm days, raising my children in a farm house with a spring for water.  That meant carrying every drop and during canning season this was a challenge of endurance. 

These days, I pop the jars in the dishwasher removing them clean and sterile.  The Foley food mill does all the grinding, removing seeds, skins, and stems like magic.  Then into the jars, nine fit in my canner at once and approximately ten minutes later, I'm sitting on the porch reading a book.  So ha ha!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Plant the Seeds...

Plant the seeds...grow good stuff...and share the bounty.

Farmer's markets are springing up everywhere.  This charming display of fresh food was on the town green in Peru, VT today.  This is what we wait all year for.  I feel healthier just standing next to them.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Pumpkins Anyone?

Shirley and Foster are here for the weekend and we spent the day wandering around Vermont and New Hampshire.  We stopped at Alyson's orchard to pick a few snacking apples and found out they lost most of their apples to frost earlier this year.  It was no problem buying a pumpkin, though.  Aren't they just beautiful enough to eat?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Autumnal Equinox...

Its here...the first red branch, the first sign of autumn.  I started this blog on the first day of spring this year, the vernal equinox.  I walked on the beach and watched the tide change.  134 posts later... 

Today fall begins. The autumnal equinox is defined as the point at which the Sun appears to cross the celestial equator from north to south.The word equinox means "equal night"; night and day are the same length of time. That means tomorrow there will be more dark than light.  Will you notice that?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lola's Quilt...

Sugar and spice and everything nice...for Lola Kate.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Looking Up...

Something happens when you look up.  I have a habit of cleaning floors and surfaces with my head down.  Then when I finish and am relaxing, I notice a cobweb draped across the beam in the dining room to the candle holder.  Well, gee, what would life be like if I looked up once in awhile!  There's a whole nother world up there. 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Peace Sunday...

Our church celebrated Peace Sunday this morning with guitar accompanied singing around our peace pole. 

The original Peace Sunday was held in the Rose Bowl in 1982 with 85000 in attendance. In addition to Linda Ronstadt, others performing at this rally were Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Tom Petty, Stevie Wonder, Stevie Nicks, Dan Fogelberg, Gary U.S. Bonds and Bonnie Raitt.

That was 28 years ago - are we any closer to peace?



Saturday, September 18, 2010

Craft Fair...

With autumn in the air, craft fair season is upon us.  Time to replace the old, worn wreath on the porch, time to purchase unique Christmas gifts, and time to marvel at the local talent participating in this wonderful street fair.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


I snapped this picture the other day as I was wandering around Vermont.  When I uploaded it later, it suggested hope to me.  It made me feel like I could fly away; I felt light as a feather.  Photography is such a therapeutic tool.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Beauty in the Country...

What a wonderful summer we have had with just enough rain to nourish our plants but not enough to encourage slugs or mosquitos.  I have seen neither this summer.  Today I noticed crunchy brown leaves among the flowers.  How sad I will be when frost takes summer's bounty yet again. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tomato-Basil Simmer Sauce...

12 pounds of ripe tomatoes, scalded and about to be peeled.

A big pot of ripe basil.

Equals seven pints of tomato-basil simmer sauce ready for a cold winter night when time is short and my husband is starving.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Best-ever Dill Pickles...

I found a new recipe yesterday for dill pickles.  It said, "best ever."  Now there's a statement that needs some proof.   I'll let you know.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


"Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God." 
St. Matthew 5:9

September 11 is forever changed in history.  Our church planted a peace pole at it's entrance making it impossible to enter God's sanctuary without peace in your heart.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

High Tea...

Can you feel autumn in the air?  Autumn brings with it goodbye (for now) to our dear friend Louise.  She comes each summer and we float around Vermont enjoying common interests and friends.  This year we treated her to High Tea at the Inn Victoria in Chester, VT.


Upon arrival we each chose our tea cup and tea.  The tea menu was extensive.  I chose Ginger Twist, a mix of lemongrass, tropical fruits and mint fueled with a touch of ginger. It was exquisite with spicy, fruity, and sweet attributes.  We each had our own teapot with a warmer so our last cup was as perfect as our first.

We also enjoyed a variety of tiny sandwiches including the traditional cucumber with cream cheese and dill, quiche, apple tarts, cheesecake, and flourless chocolate cupcakes.  We were making sure Louise would miss us and hurry back next summer. The fellowship we share is only perfect with her in our group.  We love you, Louise, have a good winter.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Who knew this beautiful southern plant grew in Vermont?  It definitely makes a statement.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Green Mountain National Forest..

Come to the mountains with me, my friend.  We will walk, breathe and be thankful for every step and breath along the way.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Pick a Peck...

The little picker is back.  I've never known a child who likes to pick things like she does.  


How many peppers did Peter Piper pick?

Friday, September 3, 2010


Nothing more needs to be said.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Sister Sandie...

My sister is visiting from Hawaii.  She comes once a year and we always enjoy our short time together.  First we say hello...then we say....