November 26, 2020
A Thanksgiving gift
Here are some photos from our Thanksgiving. Alison and I headed out to my mom's house in the style and comfort of my dad's convertible. We walked around the lake in her neighborhood, enjoying the glorious weather. Ian and two of his best friends spent the day hiking in Zion National Park, while my sister Rachel and her family celebrated at home. We had two feasts, one in the late afternoon at my mom's house and another in the early evening at Cam and Nancy's house, the first in their new home. We were joined by Nancy's parents and brother, and spent all of our time (save for the meal itself) in the garage, with plenty of air circulation. Alison's dad, pictured last here, spent the day with his son Tony and his family.
From the archive
First, we have Nancy, dressed up for Halloween as the mayor from the TV show Schitt's Creek. You can't see it here, but she was also sporting an impressive beer belly. Next, we have Ian Johnson, our neighbor in Lexington. He's been coming to our home each morning to have Alison oversee his schoolwork. He's an adorable, funny kid. Next, we have my mom, dressed in her Notre Dame finest, to cheer on the Fighting Irish at a recent football game. Lastly, we have our very good friend Beth. She joined us in Lexington for the day recently, at which time Alison presented her with a quilt she had made for her.
Here are three of my favorites of late. First, When the Saints Go Marching In, performed by The Preservation Hall Jazz Band and special guests including Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello and Dave Matthews, among others. McCartney plays an absolutely lousy trumpet, but that's part of the charm of this performance. Second, we have That Girl Is You, performed by Dave Matthews and Preservation Hall. Matthews performs a terrific tune, and is a hoot to boot. Lastly, we have This Train Is Bound For Glory, an infectious rendition of this classic tune by Mumford and Sons and The Old Crow Medicine Show. Check them all out. You won't be disappointed!
October 23, 2020
From the archive
The resurrection of the Back Yard
The back yard in Lexington had been suffering for at least five years, overgrown with weeds and a space that we just did not use. This summer, we had a 16' x 16' concrete slab poured, bought some outdoor furniture, rocks and mulch, a fire pit and some decorative lights, and we've now got a very inviting outdoor space to use when the weather allows. Come join us there sometime!
The COVID-19 pandemic has turned me into a hermit. I can easily go for a couple of weeks without leaving the property. Alison ventures out to buy food and walk with her friends, but I've remained holed up at home. This has given me the opportunity to read more than usual. Here is a summary of the last few books that I've read and enjoyed.
The topic intrigued me, and a sufficient number of years have passed since that tragedy that I felt comfortable reading it. 2,749 people died inside the Twin Towers that day, and the authors give you a chilling, inside look at the people that made it out and those that didn't. There were many stories of bravery that day, most of them about civilians, not the rescue crews. The book also gives you a detailed look at the dysfunction at the Port Authority (the owners of the towers) and the fire and police departments of New York, who couldn't communicate with themselves, let alone others during the catastrophe.
As for the Steinbeck novel, the title of that novel is taken from the poem.
March 28th, 2020
Legos and fabric
While Alison has been spending her free time lovingly fondling her beloved scraps of fabric (see photo above), I have spent mine working on a 2000-piece Lego model of the NASA Apollo Saturn V rocket (see photos below). One is never too old for Legos!
My partner in Lego Crime is Dave Norman, Nancy's dad. I sent him the rocket, he put it together and admired it on the mantelpiece for a month or so, and then disassembled it and sent it to me. He's now working on the NASA Apollo Lunar Lander. So many Legos; so little time!
Matt and Ginger sitting in a tree...
2020 New Year's Card
Our very favorite Abby
My travels around YouTube continue, as I search for new and interesting music. A couple of months back, I discovered a group named Scary Pockets. Their angle is that they perform covers of popular songs with a distinctly funky feel. I find their music infectious! Here are a few of my favorites:
The Magnificent Cousin Hy
Photos: Day 8
On Day 8 of our trip, we spent the afternoon hiking with Cousin Hy and his wife, Wonderful Roz. This gave us the opportunity to catch up with them both and learn about what their twin children, Diana and Phil, are up to nowadays.
Photos: Day 9
On Day 9, Alison drove to Bangor to pick up Ian at the airport. They then drove the 2-3 hours to Eastport, Maine to spend a few days with the relatives on his dad's side of the family. As for me and what I did on Day 9, I'm drawing a complete blank.
Photos: Day 10
Day 10 featured more hiking in and around the Eastport area. Whatever I did, I apparently did without a camera, as there is no photographic evidence.
Photos: Day 11
On Day 11, Alison, Ian, Cam and Nancy all returned to Bar Harbor to begin the weekend's wedding festivities. The highlight of the day was a 2-hour cruise aboard the Margaret Todd, a four-masted schooner that offers sightseeing trips in the Mount Desert Island area.
The Father of Acadia
Photos: Day 5
Day 5 featured a trip to the top of Cadillac Mountain, the highest point in both Acadia National Park and the surrounding area. It was named after Antoine Laumet de la Mothe, sieur de Cadillac, a French explorer and relentless self-promoter.
Photos: Day 6
Day 6 featured a trip to Thunder Hole, offering some impressive crashing waves at high tide; dinner at Jordan Pond House, offering decent food and a spectacular view; and sunset over Eagle Lake, as viewed from Acadia's Park Loop Road.
Day 7 featured multiple long walks: an early morning walk for Alison and Liesl, a mid-morning walk along the coastal path for me, and a hike for Alison, John and Becca. Oddly enough, no photos were taken today. Sorry about that.
Tomorrow, however, the group will start to expand as the first guests arrive in advance of Friday's wedding celebration. I expect that many photo opportunities will present themselves.
An occasional blog about what's going on in our lives.
A complete list of all of our blog posts, in chronological order.
If you subscribe, we will send you an email message whenever we post a new entry.