A Tale of Two Sunsets – On the Same Night

After an unusually hectic workday yesterday, we opted to simply take it easy in the evening. Whereas we often leave the house immediately following dinner (which immediately follows work – there’s no commute time when you work from home), last night we hung out with the cats and the backyard. That is, we stayed at home until about 8:00 when the sky was starting to look promising for a sunset. Continue reading

A Moment of Zen

My mom has smoked longer than I can remember…by a good ten years, I’d say. And not just a little. She inhaled two packs of cigarettes – about forty – each day for about as many years. She’s tried to quit before – how many smokers haven’t? – but it never took. And she’s tried a lot of things: group hypnotism, nicotine gum, smoking outside only, e-cigs, resolve, and probably more. But it’s hard when those closest to you smoke, too. Everyone understands when you start back up, and they’re all around you, stress-free when you’re irritably trying not to. Or so I imagine. Continue reading

Early Spring Gallivanting

It seems to be a late spring for everyone, and while looking at the giant piles of snow in the front yard that the snowmobilers like to ramp, I was feeling doubly sorry for myself thinking we might never see our snowpack melt. Then I looked at some photos from this time two years ago – a little less snow on the ground, but there nonetheless. No crocuses, those first harbingers of spring, until mid-April. Sigh. Continue reading

Ski Season, Check – Spring…?

Yesterday was a gorgeous day. The sun stained the lingering morning clouds pink before rising brightly, and the air was clear. Tony and I took off at 8:30 for our last rides down the slopes at Shanty Creek for the season. The snow was slow, but the resort was uncrowded, so we didn’t mind. We played in all our favorite places, and then tested the (frozen) waters of some steeper runs that we had avoided on account of they were either too bumpy or icy. The fresh powder gave me the confidence to suggest we tackle Kingdom Come – a quick 450-foot drop down the face of Shanty’s biggest and steepest hill. Continue reading

A Visit to Stone Gate Farm

I’ll be brief: my neighbors rock. They share conversations, lend us tools, help on patio renovations, plow the drive, and now they’ve even let me come over to photograph their red barns in the snow…and all I do is share baked goods as a thank you. They must think their neighbors do not rock. More treats must be in order.

The other night on Facebook, I unceremoniously invited myself over to their place. To Gary: “I meant to send you an email earlier about pics…as in, can I come over and take snowy photos of your barn?” His reply: “Any time Heather, no invitation is ever needed…!” See? They are awesome. I suited up at noon and walked over for lunch…which you might think would give road crews enough time to clear the road. Nope. Snow pants and boots were in order.

I traipsed down their driveway for a few shots, slogged out through the snow for some more, and then crossed into the pines on the edge of the property for a couple more. Satisfied, I waved to Jill (had I known she was home, I would’ve happily chatted), and returned home for a bite.

The day was so spectacular though, that I soon found myself back in my snow gear for the four miles around the block – this time having waited long enough for the plow. The surface wasn’t too bad, but I was regularly pelted by tufts of snow blowing out of the trees. As I crested the last rise, Gary pulled up beside me in his truck. When he asked if I had stopped by, I replied that I had, but that I’d be back since the light was better.

I stayed home for the rest of the day, finishing up the work I had left to go walking. After dinner we took a quick drive, but I wasn’t camera-compelled until sunset. Sunset! We had one! We’re seeing these more often now – perhaps spring is on the way…though it didn’t look much like it as I trudged through deep snow for the pictures. It was worth it 😉