Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Durham Fair Fun

The last post for September should be devoted to our favorite late September event: the Durham Fair in Connecticut. We have gone every year except one since before Doug and I were married. Every year there are wonderful animals, great collections, beautiful crafts and needlework, agricultural and baking events, racing pigs, truck pulls, and rides. And, of course, greasy fair food... actually we don't eat too much of the greasy stuff, no Bloomin' Onions, or Elephant Ear size fried dough. But we did sample the chili dogs, falafel, french fries, lemonade and candy apples.

Here is a pumpkin that broke the state record. Evidently these pumpkins can gain up to 40lbs/day.
This year's favorite animals were this adorable donkey:

and this chicken with swirly feathers:

Honorable mention in my personal awards goes to this llama who knows doing obstacle courses is pretty silly.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Entering a Fairy World

Inspired by a blog post from Magic Onion, Renee and I set out to make a fairy garden this past weekend. We scoured the house and yard for moss, bark, plants with small leaves, feathers, rocks and jewels from our collections. We dug the soil. We unearthed thyme, rosemary and moss, and replanted them. Then Renee arranged the stones, dried flowers, feathers, shells and sea glass. Thus we have found a use for our greenhouse.

Renee waters the plants and in the coming weeks we will make furniture and more inspired by the book Fairy Island. This magical book describes an island of fairy houses discovered by a grandmother in letters to her granddaughter. The pictures are so lovely and detailed. A beach house has a tiny bathtub made of shells and a real seahorse. There are tiny fairy shoes made of peanut shells, mirrors of isinglass, and musical instruments made of nuts and sticks. The book is a wonder.

This yard is full of fairies. Here is one that even sat still for me on a twig.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Feeling like Fall

Over the weekend we took a family walk around the neighborhood. The weather is so lovely with just a hint of Fall in the air. The weeds (field flowers) are very tall, but the leaves are still green and cows fat!

The kids have now begun school. It is very strange but wonderful to see them off at the bus. Jack gets picked up at 7:10 and Renee at 7:57. I love the staggered times. I get breakfast time alone with each of them. No more listening to them bicker early in the AM.

So far the kids are enjoying their new schools. We have found a challenging piano teacher for Jack, and Renee is going to start violin lessons at school. I had my first new friend over for coffee this morning.

I feel like we're getting a good start on our new life.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Getting Around

Finally, I'm back with the promised cow picture. For two of the past 5 days the cows have been in the near field.
Today we started some serious pruning work around the yard. (We had someone from a local garden center come out last Thursday evening and help us identify bushes to see which are keepers and when and how to prune them.) It was hungry work, so we took the family out for dinner at a place Doug and I enjoyed back in the early '90s, REDBONES. We had great ribs and pulled pork, and, of course, mac and cheese for Renee. Then we walked to the apartment I lived in while I was in graduate school when I met Doug.

Also, I got a working GPS, so I managed to drive to Somerville without getting lost. Hooray. I think I've gotten lost about a dozen times since I've moved here. The worst was trying to get to the motor vehicle department (where we waited about 3 hours to register our cars) and the inspection station (where I failed the first inspection, but at least knew the way for reinspection). So now we have MA license plates and Doug has a new driver's licence. I'll get mine once the kids are in school (starting Tuesday).