life in the Kearsarge area

what's happening in the Kearsarge/Lake Sunapee area of NH

Archive for December, 2008

Your favorite gift

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What was your favorite gift this year? I can tell you what my 6-year-old son loved: his zebra. He’s been enamored with all things zebra for a year, and Santa brought this stellar animal this year. It’s been a big hit – even made it up the bunk bed ladder into bed one night. My 4-year-old daughter’s favorite gift, I think, was Polly Pocket and her tiny accessories. I say “I think” because that is the toy she has played with the most. But she received a lot of clothes and has been changing her outfit several times a day, so it is a toss up. My best gift? A week of doing nothing. In between watching television “marathons” – I lazily watched a whole season of Project Runway – I’ve been reading books, organizing tax information and playing with the kids’ new toys. There are no deadlines or no schedules this holiday vacation. We’re enjoying one day at a time. Hope you all are, too!

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It’s *still* snowing

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We always get our tree at the last minute. With two small children, it’s best to get it a week before Christmas, so you are only yelling “DON’T TOUCH THE ORNAMENTS!” for seven days, instead of a month. So we pick a lovely, snowy weather day to drive to Newport to get our tree. I, of course, make the kids stand near it for a photos. They are troopers – this is classic – they are cold and squinting from the wind and falling snow – but still smiling for mommy!

What is art?

picture-075 I took a trip for my birthday – back to my stomping grounds of Boston to visit my friend from graduate school. We headed over to the Museum of Fine Arts to see the new exhibits. I have to say that some perplexed me – is this art? – but I loved the two new photography exhibits. A portrait photographer from Canada – Yousuf Karsh – had a real talent for capturing the personality of the subject. Just seeing the photo of the celebrity (or statesman) was like meeting the person, shaking his/her hand. Inspires me to do a bit better with my little camera.

Then we headed over to Copley Place to see different items of beauty – for example, $1,000+  handbags at Louis Vuitton. My old apartment was on Beacon Street, five blocks from Copley,  so I used to spend a lot of time walking through it (you thought I was going to say shopping, didn’t you?) on the way home from school and work. The sparkle of high-end merchandising is still compelling – the glittering jewels of Tiffany, the aromas from the gold boxes of the Godiva Shop, the shiny patent leather high heel shoes that look purple in one light, brown in another. The word “recession” was not spoken in these decorated halls – it was holiday shopping as usual. I particularly liked the decorations – try hanging this bad boy on your tree!     picture-087

Ice is not nice

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Now, I don’t mind if I don’t have electricity. But I do mind that I have to travel to several  different towns to find a bank that is wired with power. (Grantham – closed. Newport – closed. New London – open.) The ice was kind of pretty though. Too bad I was in too much of a hurry to pull over and take a photo OUTSIDE of my car.

No electricity?

picture-011 Have I got an idea for a snow-day project  – gingerbread houses. We were without power for 22 hours, but fortunately I had gingerbread house materials on hand: gingerbread cookies (surprisingly good wheat free/dairy free by Jo-sef), three tubes of frosting, skittles, lifesavers, sprinkles (multicolored and stars), smarties and a tub of pink frosting. The kids and I each grabbed a plate and made an attempt at either a train or a house. For an hour we glued with frosting, let go and watched it fall, added more frosting, watched it fall, added MORE frosting and propped it up with another cookie, then covered it with candy. We were able to keep two houses standing, but the larger one suffered a devastating roof collapse.    picture-013

After we finished, the power was still out, the sun had set, the candles were lit, and two little faces looked at me and said, we’re bored.

How cute is that?

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I needed a baby gift so I headed down to New London to find something for a newborn boy. I knew I had it right when I stopped into Artisan’s in New London and found Pookie’s Playclothes. The knitted items from Camille Gibson’s new peasant collection are adorable. And you can’t go wrong supporting a New Hampshire company (Pookie’s is based in Concord). See more of the knitted wonders for your own little cutie at http://www.pookiesplayclothes.com

Stop for a slice

It was Saturday, and after a busy morning of errands in New London, my mom and I were ready for lunch. But where to go? Mom went to a Chinese restaurant the day before, so that was a no. I ate at Jack’s the day before, so that was a no. We drove down Main Street and there was Screwie Lewiez – a place neither of us had tried before.  (Well,  let me correct that, I did patronize the Newport location, grabbing slices while I was on the road a couple times, but had not been to their new location in New London.)

It was a nice treat. We were a bit early for lunch (11 a.m. – hey, a 6 a.m. breakfast is long gone by then!) so we had the place to ourselves. We each ordered two slices and found a table near the window. We were impressed with the cloth placemats, holiday table decorations, and the super clean bathroom (one of my pet peeves in restaurants). Our slices were warmed and brought to our table; boy, were they yummy! But really, really big – I could have had just one (and then had room for a cookie for dessert). What I liked, though, was the friendly staff. The waitress asked about our day (and our errands) and the owner checked on us to see if we were enjoying our meal. I liked it so much I brought my husband for lunch the next day – and they remembered me. Now, you don’t get that kind of service in New York City!