Friday, December 28, 2007

Snowy December in New Hampshire

Last year ski season didn't get started until late January, early February. I remember a few balmy January days with temperatures near 60 degrees. This year, the ski season got started before winter arrived on the calendar. Tonight I am awaitng our sixth snow storm. It will probably only bring a couple of inches to my part of the state before it turns to sleet and freezing rain. But that snow amount will be added to what has already fallen in the last two weeks.

As of today, New Hampshire has moved up to the 3rd snowiest December in the state's history since records were first kept in the late 1800's! Although there are only a few days left in the month, it is possible we will break or tie the number one record holder. There are two additional snow events in the weather forcast before New Years Day. This is the heavy wet snow. Many people have to shovel their roofs. On the plus side, New Hampshire is a tourist state with lots of skiing, snowboarding and snowmobiling. All this snow is good for the state and it sure is pretty. I leave you with some photos I took recently. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...

The driveway is down there somewhere!

Sunrise kisses the treetop of one tree in the back yard.

The day after the storm, the sunrise peaks through the trees across the street.

Happy New Year!!! :-)

Sunday, December 16, 2007


I've been tag.. er hooplahed! Here are the rules:

1. List 12 random things about yourself that has to do with Christmas
2. Please refer to it as a 'hoopla' and not the dreaded 'm'-word
3. You have to specifically tag people when you're done. None of this "if you're reading this, consider yourself tagged" stuff is allowed...then nobody ends up actually doing it. The number of people who you tag is really up to you -- but the more, the merrier to get this 'hoopla' circulating through the blogosphere.
4. Please try and do it as quickly as possible. The Christmas season will be over before we know it and I'd like to get as many people involved as possible.
5. If you want to -- please give me, Andrea, some link-love as the 'Hoopla-Creator'. I love new blog-traffic.

Before I get to my Hoolpla, here is how the hoopla got to me:

Sharon at Sit With Me Awhile started this Hoopla. I think she hooplahed
Denise at Samaritan Women who tag... er hooplahed
Mary at Mary's Writing Nook who tag... er hooplahed me :-)

1) One Christmas gift that stands out in my memory is the beautiful white angora tam that Grandma knitted for me when I was about 11 years old.

2) I don't know how old I was, but I must have been around seven or eight when Grandma took me to Boston on the train. I don't remember much except that we stopped to look in a store window that was set up with a beautiful village. A little locomotive traveled around the village. In another window there were mechanical dolls. One was dressed in a cranberry colored coat with a white-fur-lined hood. I was mezmerized by it all!

3) Although I am a terrible singer, I thoroughly enjoyed the year my older cousin took me along with her friends caroling. We had a great time singing - people came to their doors and windows, smiled and waved. Later we went back to her house for hot chocolate.

4) I was deeply touched by my husband's sister and her husband the Christmas after my husband, Dave, had triple bypass surgery. He had been out of work since October and we didn't have money to buy presents for the children. Kathy and Skip arrived Christmas morning with large bags filled with presents for the children, Dave and me. It was an unexpected kindness and thoughtfullness I will never forget.

5) My Christmas treasures are all the handmade cards and drawings my children and grandchildren have given me.

6) Dave and I laughed so hard we were in tears the Christmas that my son and his girlfriend (soon to be daughter-in-law) gave us a Universal remote and a calculator. The remote, for Dave and the calculator for me. Why did we laugh so hard? They were huge! So huge that we could not possibly lose them, nor did we need our glasses to use them. Kevin and Chrissy thought it was a joke - we still use them!!

7) That same year, Chrissy and I had our own laugh - I gave her a book I had just heard of and she gave me a book she had just heard of - The DaVinci Code!! LOL

8) For many years, my daughter Mariah and my grandchildren, Zach and Keely would gather round the tree. The children would decorate it, which was always interesting with delightful results. Then we would sing Christmas carols and drink hot chocolate in Mariah's special Christmas cups.

9) We have a spare room in the cellar. For a number of years, it became the Christmas room. Mariah, who is very artistic, would help me decorate it. She did all the climbing and pinning. Her ideas always gave the room that special extra magical look. I enjoyed the time with her.

10) My favorite Christmas carol is "The Little Drummer Boy."

11) I watch "It's a Wonderful Life" every year and I always cry. It is so hopeful!

12) Christmas is a time for family and friends to be together and to count our blessing - we are together.

That's my "Hoopla". Now in order to comply with the rules, I just need five volunteers who will let me tag... er hooplah them! LOL

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Most Welcome Backyard Visitors

Wednesday, my grandaughter Keely called to me and my grandson Zach in a hushed sort of voice. I went out to the kitchen and she was standing like a statue by the window that looks out on the back yard. She whispered for us to slowly come to the window. There in the backyard were two deer. One was very large, the other smaller. They were eating some of the branches on a pine tree. I took a picture of the smaller one but it didn't come out very well. The screen was still in the closed window, so it made for a blurred photo.

The deer actually seemed so much larger than those we usually see. I think that is due to the fact that we only see them in the late spring and summer. On those rare occasions when they come to the back yard, they are usually partially hidden by foliage. They don't stay long. Usually we spot them across the street at the far side of the baseball field. Again, they don't linger.

Wednesday was different. We watched them for a good 10 minutes. They wandered from the far side of the pond to the other end of the house. Slowly we made our way to the bedroom facing the woodsy area at that end of the house. It was dusk and snowing, but we had no problem watching them. They were beautiful. Finally they made their way to the woods across the street. I managed to get one picture in which, if you look carelfully, you can see them. The sky had darkened by this time and it is reflected in the photo.

Dave told a co-worker about our adventure. He suggested a feed that we could put out to attract the deer back to the yard. Dave bought it. It smells good enough to eat. It looks similar to granola. Dave had put some out Friday, Saturday and today. There are all kinds of deer tracks in the area. Each morning when he checks, all the feed is gone!

Today he put a motion sensor out there that beeps softly in the house whenever disturbed. Hopefully, we will get to see them again and get some good photos. (Yes, we took the screen out - finally. LOL).

Zach, Keely and I were enthralled watching them. They are so beautiful. It was a wonderful experience for us to share. With a little luck, we will have more opportunities to see these beautiful and most welcome backyard visitors!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

"Twelve Questions of Christmas Meme"

Here is the "Twelve Questions of Christmas Meme" I saw at my good friend Renie's blog, Renie Burghardts World. It's a lot of fun. If you would like to give it a try, click on over to Hootin' Anni's Blog. Hootin Anni created it and has graciously provided the graphic, too!

1. Christmas is beautiful. [fill in the blank with ONE WORD]

2. In memories, what was the best part of your Christmases past?
Watching my children on Christmas morning!

3. Was Santa ever good to you?
Yes, he has given me many wonderful surprises over the year! I'm glad I married him!

4. Do you open gifts on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or both?
One gift Christmas Eve and the rest Christmas Day.

5. Is there something you make each and every year? [craft or recipe]
I used to make fudge. When the kids were little, we made it as a family. They are grown now. I only make it once in a while.

Marshmallow Fluff Fudge
2 1/2 c. sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 stick butter or margarine
1 5.33 oz. can evaporated milk (3/4 c.)
1 Jar (7 1/2oz) Marshmallow Fluff
3/4 tsp. vanilla
1 12-oz. package semisweet-chocolate pieces
1 /2 c. chopped walnuts

Grease a 9-inch square baking pan; set aside. In large saucepan combine first 5 ingredients. Stir over low heat until blended. Heat to a full-rolling boil being careful not to mistake escaping air bubbles for boiling. Boil slowly, stirring constantly, 5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and chocolate until chocolate is melted. Add nuts. Turn into greased pan and cool. Makes 2 1/2 pounds.

6. What is your favorite five[5] Christmas songs/hymns?
The Little Drummer Boy
Joy to the World
O Holy Night
Feliz Navidad
Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer

7. Is there a new tradition for Christmas since your childhood days?
On Christmas morning we all (my husband (aka Santa), my grown son and his fiance, my grown daughter and my two grandchildren) have a continental breakfast together and open presents. The main attraction is watching my grandchildren open their presents. It is very special.
It's usually filled with loads of laughter!

8. Describe one of your Christmas trips. [whether it's across town or across country]
Last year, we had Christmas morning at my daughter's house. Since I'm pretty much homebound, it was a real treat for me. She only lives about a mile or two away, so it was a short trip. I loved seeing her house so beautifully decorated. My grandchildren had much to show me! It was delightful!

9. Do you have a special Christmas outfit to wear for the day?
No. I usually wear my slacks and a favorite blouse and scarf.

10. Have YOU or any of your family members sat on Santa's lap?
Yes, long, long ago.

11. What is/or will be on your Christmas tree this year?
I don't know. We are planning on some construction in the spring. There is a beautiful little tree - I think it is a spruce, growing right in the middle of the area to be disturbed. We may cut it down and use that for our tree. We have cut down trees on our property in the past. We've been lucky to have so many trees!

12. Do you/or have you decorated your yard for Christmas?
Not usually. One year, my daughter and the children decorated some of the trees in the front yard. It was beautiful!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Nor'easter Hits New Hampshire!

It started snowing last night. Actually, it began as freezing rain. It switched over to snow by early morning. The roads were icy; there were many fender benders around the state. It is supposed to stop snowing here tonight. It will continue to snow in the northern part of the state until tomorrow. Skiers are delighted and shovelers are not!

Snow didn't slow the birds down. Chickadees, nuthatches, and titmice flew to the feeders, grabbed their seeds and were off to the branches to crack them open. They don't seem to mind the storm.

The kids are happy about a day off from school. My husband was not able to go to work. The driving was treacherous, even more so in the area near his workplace. The world will look pretty tomorrow and everything will be back to normal. We got through this first nor'easter of the season just fine. As for me, I'm looking forward to the last nor'easter of the season!

Animal Personality Test

Your Animal Personality

Your Power Animal: Deer

Animal You Were in a Past Life: Panda

You are a fun-seeker - an adventurous, risk-taker.
While you are spontaneous, you are not very rational.

Thank you for this fun test, Michele!