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Wherein you will find posts with humor, photos, reviews, occasional rants and journalistic entries of interest to me alone but that I hope will touch you, the reader, in some way. I remain sincerely yours,
A Work in Progress

Saturday, June 25, 2011

On the Nature of Old Friendships

Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a friend. ~Plautus

I have been blessed to have wonderful people in my life. Some friends were for a season, though treasured and remembered with great fondness, like my first best friend Imelda.  She was wonderful.  She had long auburn hair, freckles and a beautiful smile.  Having lost touch for years, we are FB friends now and she looks happy and well and I am glad for her.

Then there was the neighborhood gang I grew up with, went to school with and hung out with at the pond.  June and Jimmy and the rest of them, Daena, Teresa, Judy, Joanne, John, the BWB gang and that rotter David Peschel.  

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive.  ~Anäis Nin

Then there was high school.  The teen years of drama and angst, the Breakfast Club stereotypes and all.  First loves, first hates, passionate friendships, broken ones, first deep hurts amid the bewildering, hormonal craziness that high school can be. 
There was also refuge, fun, inspiration and release in Drama Club, Concert Choir and Don Nardo's classroom.  I met amazing people. With them I sang, played, skipped class, hung out, studied, partied, commiserated, learned to smoke, acted, worked with and a few I went to proms with too. These were heady times. It was High School.   The old gang still warms my heart and knowing how they are matters to me. Facebook has been a huge blessing for reconnecting with old friends.  A few I like even better now, that we are older and wiser, but just as silly.  I wish we could hang out in person but time, logistics and life get in the way.  It is what it is, I love you guys.  You know who you are.

 True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.  ~Kurt Vonnegut

Post high school and college were some of my favorite years in the friendship realm.  I hung out with my little sister and some of her pals a great deal.
These were also my not so well behaved years.  The years in college where I was a little lost, a lot lonely and looking for love in all the wrong places. 
My friend Jimmy and I faced these years together more often than not and we had some grand times, some really low times and some great times and we had each other.  Thank God.  I can't imagine those years without him.  He is one of the funniest, steadiest, nicest guys I have ever known. A raconteur of the finest kind with a gift for getting into situations that make the best stories. The best roommate I ever had.   The man is a gourmet cook and a pain in the ass to clean up after. To this day I don't think he can make dinner without using every pot, pan and utensil in the house.  Notably, it was in his kitchen I saw my first actual fireball.
It was thanks to him I met my boyfriend and thanks to that boyfriend,  I did meet and eventually marry Mr. Right for me.
Of course, being the friend of mainly guys, I had to put up with a lot of their love lives too but Jimmy sensibly married the girl I picked out for him because I loved her.  Lucky for me they are still madly in love.

All of which brings me to the reason for writing today.  Today is the semi-annual gathering that reunites some of us for a few hours.  I can't wait.  Real friendships are not a factor of time or distance.  They are treasures built on shared experience, on laughter and tears, memories and an easy, comfortable familiarity that comes from all of it combined.

I can't wait to see you guys, and yes, I am bringing the salad still.  










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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Very Wordy Wednesday

This week I got a chance to do something that in all my 46 years, I had never done before.  I went on an overnight get-a-way with my Mom, just the two of us.
We went up to see Rowan doing her junior internship thing at Old Sturbridge Village and we had an absolute blast.  Leaving all our cares, pets, kids and husbands behind, up we drove Monday morning to arrive at the Village in good order.  The weather was perfect and there was my mother in law who played tour guide for us for the day, an unexpected pleasure and delight.
Freeman Farm was first, it was Rowan's morning station.  We ambled up there enjoying everything through Mom's eyes. 
Here is Rowan in front of the Freeman farmhouse checking to make sure there is no chick in the egg she is about to use to make Cupcake.  Apparently,  it freaks out the tourists if they crack one and there is a developing chick inside. 
I love this one.
We walked her to lunch and then had a lovely meal ourselves at the Bullard Tavern.  Interns have to eat upstairs so we didn't get to spend time with her but it was still nice.
 Her second station for the day was my favorite, the dye station.  As her Mom, it was a little nerve-wracking watching her pick up a huge, heavy, cast iron pot from over the fire and carry them with her apron as a pot holder, but I was so proud of her.
Here she is straining the sage out of the dye so that it doesn't get flecks of it on the yarn.  It smelled heavenly and standing over that all day would give you a nice steamy facial.
The dark green is the color they were making that day, aren't these gorgeous!!
She has learned so much!  Rowan explained that they were slowly heating up the wool to that when they put it into the hot dye, it wouldn't felt.  I hadn't even thought of that.

More of the Village to see, off we went.  Had a fabulous time on the River Ride.  It is one of my very favorite things to do on a hot day.  The peaceful, wonderful interlude on the river is always welcome.  We saw one single white water-lily, so lovely and tons of the yellow variety.  We had our own private ride with only the three of us and our driver, Tim.  Laconic folk, some of those Village people but very, very funny.
We arrived at last at the Herb Gardens on the way out.  I knew my Mom would adore them and so she did.  They are truly spectacular. ( Good job B!!)
We finally left the village to check in to our lodgings for the evening.  We stayed at the Publick House and it was lovely.  A large room, 2 queen size beds, gorgeous maroon and white toile wallpaper, some decent reproduction furniture and a balcony facing the woods that would have been fine if one were wearing 100% DEET.   All the toile made me think of a dear friend who would have loved it.  (Missing you Jenn)
 Dropped off our stuff and went to explore some shops before finding somewhere to have supper.  We found the most amazing antique shop to explore, had a grand time exploring all the treasures.  A shop called the Handmaiden was utterly enchanting and it was the gracious proprietor that suggested we dine at the Oxhead Tavern.  Off we went to find it and had a really nice and inexpensive dinner lakeside deciding on the spot that we would stay at the adjoining hotel next time we came.
Back to our lodging, phone calls to home, a long, wonderful chatty evening and we went to sleep to the sound of the rain outside.

Next morning dawned reluctantly and wet but it didn't dampen our spirits as coffee was to be had and off we went. We had our caffeine, texted the family, checked Facebook and ate in the tavern downstairs.  We had some time to kill before the Village opened and wandered about the Bake Shoppe afterwards.  Mom bought almost one of everything to bring home and a treat to slip to Rowan for her dessert and off we went again.  The weather was spitting and chilly and there were puddles but it cleared up towards the end of our day.  I didn't bring my camera due to the rain but I had the camera on my phone.  My mother in law was working at the Asa Knight store so we checked in with her to say hi and find out where Rowan was stationed.  Here she is knitting with yarn of the color Rowan was dying
Off we went back to the farm by way of the covered bridge, lumber mill, where an  interesting young man told us all sorts of stories.  We checked out the carding mill, the grist mill and a short bit later, as the sky lightened considerably, we arrived once again at the farm to see Rowan in action.  Today she was making rice fritters and roasting coffee beans, among other things.  There were tons of school groups there.
We said our goodbyes and off we went to finish our tour of the Village and then, somewhat reluctantly, we headed homeward.  It was a very special and all too short couple of days.

You can read more about Rowan's adventures on her blog, 

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

History, Jenna Style


Chapter One: The Glory that was Rome
Project: Make a Roman Signum
Jenna chose the Latin on the crossbar.  
It reads, "Woe to the Conquered".  Typical.

Chapter Two: The Celts of Britain
Jenna is ready to fight the Romans and defend her land.

Thank you Susan Wise Bauer.

link up or go for more great photos....

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