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Showing posts from November, 2013

Today's Flowers: Sea Oats

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Adella and I are less than a month away from Topsail.  Maeve and Clyde will make the trip with us, and they'll be happy to thaw out, too.  The intense cold we've had lately has gotten me to thinking about what below-zero days do to people over time.  We rush from igloo to igloo, we huddle to conserve body heat, we curl up inside our over-sized clothing, we drink too many warm drinks, we go to bed early so we can turn the heat down....We wake up early to eat oatmeal and other hot, soggy things that stick to our ribs and warm us up on the way down.  People who live year round in warmer climates can't imagine the tension that shapes our bodies and our minds.
Last week was Spirit Week at school, and Thursday was Throwback Thursday.  I wore an old friend's chunky wool sweater straight out of the 80s.  My students couldn't believe it was almost 30 years old.  Not only is it in great condition but also it looks like what I wear every other day.  For once, my sense of fas…

Happy Thanksgiving

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I posted Massasoit's picture on this blog a week or two ago, but I've got him here again to remember the first teacher who helped the Pilgrim's survive this landscape.

Wordless Wednesday: Hanging with the Pilgrims

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Our World Tuesday: Playing Our Song

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On Saturday, Adella had her audition for the north region's music ensemble.  It was nerve-wracking.  Held at Avon High School, which looks more like a corporate complex than a public school (it's clean, naturally lit, spacious, and decorated with student work in a variety of media and disciplines), the audition requires an hour of travel and passage through a long corridor of anxious parents who look like they're waiting for the electric chair before the students come face to face with their adjudicators.  Honestly, I'd prefer the hangman to the sight of some of these anxious parents.  I don't do that kind of anxiety anymore.  I want my kid to make it, but I'm happy to believe she'll do her best and what will be will be.  At the end of the day, she will be Adella and I will be Sandy, and we will breathe, eat, walk the dogs, and go to bed.
Adella said there were parents who came into the warm-up room to stare at their kids, and it was blood-curdling.  I'…

Today's Flowers: Christmas Cactus

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Christmas is in the retail air a little too early for my taste (Black Friday Week, one store is calling its greed.), but I couldn't resist this Christmas cactus when we were out shopping today.

Wishing you a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

Today's Flowers

Skywatch Friday: Morning over the Mayflower II

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Last Sunday, we had breakfast in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and paid our respects to the Mayflower II.  This ship is a replica of the actual bath tub that brought so many religious malcontents and adventurers to a continent that was doing just fine without them,thank you very much.  Nevertheless, here we are.  My mother's family can claim Mayflower descendants, which is great fun and a good reason to do some research. (This fact of our ancestry has had the effect of annoying the hell out of my father's mother, may she rest in peace, and my own in-laws for reasons I can't fathom.  This fact also impressed the ladies sitting next to us at Plimoth Plantation last week when we had our Thanksgiving feast.  You thought my nephew was the next Dalai Lama the way the school librarian with the Budweiser in her bag and some claim to Mayflower ancestry was taking his picture.  I just think it's cool and fun and interesting and a good reason for reading more.  I am a nerd.  And what…

Wordless Wednesday: Tourist at Work

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Our World Tuesday: Plymouth for Thanksgiving

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We all headed to Plymouth, Massachusetts, for the weekend.  We stopped off at The Mayflower II and met up with a knowledgeable tour guide and Myles Standish himself, who was going on about Arthur and the Christ returning to reign together.  (The English sure do think a lot of themselves!)

We paid our respects to Massasoit, that coolest of cool Wampanoag with his peace pipe and six pack.

Of course, we had a glimpse of Plymouth Rock.  The government employee explaining this rock to visitors said it used to be much larger, but in the 18th and 19th centuries people were allowed to take a hammer to it so they could take home their little--yes--piece of the rock.  The numbers made their way into the stone in the 19th century with the help of a monumental stone cutter.




Eventually, the sun came out.  We paid our respects to Governor Bradford, an ancestor.
Later in the evening, we had our dinner at Plimoth Plantation, where we were regaled with story and song by some Pilgrim hangers on.  It wa…

Our World Tuesday: Following (or Chasing?) the Clouds

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Here's a view of New York as seen from Interestate 84 westbound.  A Connecticut native, I am always a little thrown when I head west or south because the states compared to my own.  It takes hours to get through them.  And the views are gigantic.  I don't know what a mountain is until I head out of here.  Travel is good because it shakes up my way of looking at things and reminds me that is big and grand as the rest of the world is, home is the best.

Skywatch Friday

Wordless Wednesday: Dammit. Life is Big. Stand up.

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Honoring Veterans' Day with Gratitude

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Our World Tuesday: Of Pretty Girls and Puppy Dog Tails

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We've had some busy days and nights around here.  Adella is so busy growing up that my head is spinning...and the dogs always need to go out.  (I love dogs for keeping things real.  Get as philosophical as you want, kid, but get me out on time or its curtains for your carpets!)
Della and her friends cleaned up nicely, and her friend's pups were great about it until they weren't.  Then they wanted in on the action.  Wearing nylon stockings are not an everyday event for this crowd, so when the dogs came looking for a piece of the action, we held our breath. 
Later in the weekend, we discovered that Clyde is an alien with night vision.  Because we are very fond of him, we hope his spaceship does not come back.  Ever.
Maeve is an Earthling.  We're happy about this.
These days of new curriculum, new job responsibilities, and dozens of future taxpayers whose reading and writing skills need a heck of a lot of work have kept me from blogging and my other favorite forms of rec…

Wordless Wednesday: My Girls

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Our World Tuesday: Through the Cemetery

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Adella and I headed for the orchard for some apples and cider
a little too early Sunday morning, so we went looking for a place to walk.  We found ourselves at the Old Bethlem Burying Ground, circa 1750,

where a few Revolutionary War soldiers are buried.  
At the back of the burying ground was an entrance to a trail.  One grave marker was doubling as a cairn near this entrance.
Della wasn't in the mood to be photographed, but I couldn't help myself. On and on the trail went.  It was so beautiful and so ordinary.  I could have made a day of it, but it was a fine half of an hour. It'll be there for another time.  Just ask these guys. Have a great week!
Our World Tuesday