Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

I have hiked Stinson Mountain twice.  But neither had the clear view of today.  With the last few snowstorms, the mountain is a winter wonderland.  The trees are laden with snow.  The sky was a bright clear blue.

Last spring, I hiked it with some of my family.


This is the same view in the today.


But I need to go back and hike it Sunday. Why, because today I cheated, so to speak.  Today I snowmobiled to the top with my husband.  At one point, we were breaking the trail.  It appeared the groomer had made it most of the way but had turned around near the top.  At that point, Tom broke the trail the rest of the way up.


I wanted to stop and take pictures of the snow hanging from the trees along the trail.  I needed to duck to get under some, they were so heavy with snow.  But if I did stop, I would have sunk in the snow, it was that deep.  I kept saying to myself, “keep going, keep going.”  The reward was amazing.  Below is a gallery of the pictures from the top of Stinson Mt and a picture of the trail map posted at one of the snowmobile trail intersections.

If you are planning on hiking Stinson this weekend, the hiking trail was not packed out since the last snowfall.  But the snowmobile trail is.  I’m sure the hiking trail will be soon. I’m sure someone will hike it this weekend.  Maybe I’ll see you there Sunday.

Have you ever seen a sky so blue?


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Wednesday, Sept. 28: The top five pictures that illustrate your year so far.

How do you narrow down all those pictures?  I’ll try.


Our one and only snowmobile ride ended with a visit to the emergency room and surgery for Tom.  A broken clavicle and 3 broken ribs.  He’s was back to his old self in no time.  The snowmobile was repaired before he was completely healed.  Hopefully, we will get more snow this year. And no broken bones.

Hiking was a bit difficult at the beginning of the spring.  The mountain trails in NH were packed with ice.  They finally thawed out by mid-May.  This is what we came across climbing the Smarts at the end of March, very thick hard ice. Can you say crampons?!


I am working on creating a pants fitting class. I’m scheduled to teach at The Victorian Cupboard next month.


The roots from the Sweat Peas I dug up last year from my aunts are growing better than expected.Sweet Pea

I climbed Mt Washington. This is twice I have been on the top of Mt Washington. Once years ago, Tom and I took the Cog Railway to the top. Both times I have yet to see the view. One of these days I

I’m looking forward to completing the NH 4000 footers. Hopefully by the end of next month.

I’m excited about my pants class. I have learned so much in researching various pattern making methods.

It’s been a great year so far!


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Friday, Sept. 23: A family recipe (if grandma allows, of course!).

Every Christmas my mom would make cranberry nut bread and hermits.  I was never fond of the cranberry nut bread, but I love hermits. The recipe was once published in the church cookbook.

The traditional way to make hermits was to roll out a log of dough, sprinkle with sugar and bake.  Once the logs were done, cut them into squares.  But my mom would also roll the dough into balls, coat with sugar and bake into cookies.  This is the way I love to make them.  I also love to make them so they are crunchy.  My sisters beg to differ.  They like them chewy.  So I make them the way I like them. I also leave out the nut and raisins. I don’t like them in my cookies.

Let me know if you try them.  I just want to warn you.  They are addicting.



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Wednesday, Sept. 21: If you were a flavor of ice cream, which flavor would you be? Why?

When I read this, I thought, “I never made it to Benson’s Ice Cream in West Boxford this year.”

Growing up, my family often went to Benson’s for a treat.  It’s the only place I know that has Reverse Chip ice cream, chocolate ice cream with white chips.

I fondly remember going with my nephew Scott, when he was in high school.  He ordered a triple chocolate chip in a waffle cone.  The kid serving the ice cream was twice his size and questioned him on his choice of a triple.  I think it was close to a half gallon of ice cream on that cone.

Scott was determined to eat all that ice cream.  He was shivering. I had a blanket in the car, which I put around him.  He started spitting out the chocolate chips saying something about them not tasting good anymore.

We lost Scott a couple of years ago.  We all miss him, terribly.  But I remember him fondly, trying to eat that ice cream.






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Saturday, Sept. 3: Now that summer’s at an end, share a list of favorites from the season!

For this post I thought I would use mostly pictures.  I hope you enjoy.

Tom's Quilt

I finished a quilt for my husband. Here is a shot of a couple of motifs I quilted in it. A snowflake and a snowmobiler.


Carol and I met Willem Lange from the NH PTV show Windows to the Wild. He’s a hiking icon here in New Hampshire.


Met up with a facebook hiking friend on the top of Mt. Moriah.


Hiking with Maggie and Sport


Again on a mountain with these two.

Family Hike

Got some more family members out on a mountain.

Looking back at my pictures you would think I spend all of my time on the mountains. While I try to get out there at least once a week, it’s not the only thing I do. It’s just the only thing I seem to take pictures of.

I had a great summer! Did you?




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Last fall, while the cousins were cleaning out my aunts house, I dug up some of the sweet pea roots she had growing on the side of her house.  She was moving.  Sweet pea’s are my birth flower and I wanted an everlasting memory of my aunt.

It was late fall. It was a last minute impulse, so I wasn’t really careful about what I was doing.  I  planted the roots in my flower garden with the hopes that they would grow.  In the spring, I saw some small growth. I was excited and hoped they would fill in over time. I was thinking years.Sweet Pea

That shows you what I know.  They must be a very hearty plant.  They are growing  like wild fire.  I’m so excited and happy.


Now I will always have something to remember my aunt by.  It also reminds me to call her every time I see them.



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My nephew Justin lives in Minnesota.  Where it can be very cold.  The door at his home is metal and not well insulated.  He tried all the various products for sealing the door.  But it’s still cold.  He remembered when he was in college in Utah, another place it gets cold, he had hung a sleeping bag over a door to help insulate it.  But I don’t think his wife would appreciate a sleeping bag over her door.  Plus how would you get out?

Justin drew up some plans to create what he called a door blanket.  One with magnets, so it would stick to the door.  That way you can open the door without removing the blanket.  Being that he is a non sewer and doesn’t own any sewing notions what so ever, he did the next best thing.  Call Auntie Cathy.  She has a longarm (or that big machine as he called it) and can quilt a door blanket for me.

I live in New England, so we couldn’t really shop together for what he needed.  He sent me his specs for the size and fabrics he thought would work.   I purchase some chocolate-brown micro-suede polyester fabric, black out drapery liner and some Insul Bright batting.  He has some high power magnets he could use to hold his blanket to the door.

Sashiko TemplateI quilted the diamond pattern he wanted.  I have a sashiko quilting template that worked great for the diamonds.  First I needed to mark out a grid.  There are registration marks on the template that correspond to a 1 1/2″ grid.  I had a stencil made by the same company that makes the template.  Once the grid was marked, I quilted the diamond pattern.

Once I finished quilting and binding the blanket, I needed to make a slit for the door knobs.  I created a very large bound button hole.  Then attached a strap with velcro to keep the hole closed around the door knob and dead bolt.   Then I attached pockets on the back for the magnets.

When I first took it off the longarm frame, Sport had to test it out.  The diamond quilting is more visible on the back.

I shipped it off to Justin via USPS.  He got it in 2 days.  Here is the finished product on his door.  He said it feels warmer.  But he has to do a temperature test.

It was a fun yet different project.


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