Saturday, December 31, 2005

Brown Eyed Girl (and Company)

Jen and Avery came to visit this morning. Avery is a happy little guy anyway, but when you take the camera out he REALLY hams it up! He isn't yet walking, but can stand on his own for a few seconds... and he's talking. Well, maybe not in many words you can understand, but it is fun listening to 'baby' conversation and just imagine what he's saying. The sweater and hat are gifts from his Auntie Devon. Avery is lucky to have such a great mom who loves him so much!

Friday, December 30, 2005

Breaking Up Christmas

Ah, the last weekend of the year 2005 is upon us as we finish packing up our holiday gear. The tree decorations, the special candle sticks, the Christmas dinner napkins, the lights...
I really love this week between Christmas and New Years. The mad rushing about looking for just a few more stocking stuffers or that one more gift is thankfully over! Some time honored traditions were carried on, some discarded, and some new ones begun this season. Stockings were a bit haphazardly done, the family Christmas dinner was technically close to not being cooked, and tensions ran predictably high at times. We also had lights on the trees outside which I found peacefully cheery when I came home from work at night. We salvaged the holiday dinner at the last minute and had a grand feast in spite of the organic turkey that refused to roast! The children, grandchild, and grand-dogs gathered here and we had good quality time together. The Bluebird of Happiness graced our yard for a few days. And there is love here, the kind of love that lasts a lifetime.
The New Year approaches but has not yet arrived. The self-improvement resolutions have not been made and so there is still time to just 'BE' whoever and whatever I am, regardless of what I set out to become!
I have an idea that by early next week, I'll be on a new crusade to be the 'new and improved' Pammie, and I'm sure that will involve planning, organizing, list making, and goal setting. I will LOVE all of it because that is who I am. But for now, this week, I am happy to just BE all that I am, and all that I'm not. This is my week of limbo, and I'm going to enjoy every moment I have left of it!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Woodchopper's Reel

Our little pile of fire wood is keeping our kitchen warm these days. We have a Vermont Castings Intrepid tucked into the corner on a brick hearth, and Richard has been keeping it brightly burning. It's such a cozy feeling to come home at the end of the day, and be greeted with the cheery flickering of flames, the smell of a wood fire, and the warmth that only a wood fire can give off.
Richard and I primarily heat with oil, and have a forced hot air system in this old house. The wood stove is supplemental, but in the event of a power outage it would be crucial to keeping things from freezing up and to keep us warm. And even though it's just a little stove, putting out a little heat, it creates a BIG sense of contentment. It is hard for me to imagine living without a wood stove of some sort, I think there have only been a few times in my life when I didn't have wood heat available, and I really missed it.
We are looking for land, and plan to build our own home in the near future. A centrally located wood stove will emphasize our goal of self-sufficiency, practicality, and 'home-grown' lifestyle. I suppose it is practical to have a more 'mainstream' heat source, but I still like the idea of heating with wood!

Monday, December 26, 2005

Granny Will Your Dog Bite

Oscar and Anna are just about the best dogs I've ever known, even if I am biased in my opinion :)
Bryan and I went up to see Oma and Opa, and the pups decided they'd like to lay on the floor and just watch over the back yard through the sliding doors. It sure is cozy in their house with the wood stove going, the smell of apple pie baking in the oven, and the cheery atmosphere of their home.

This old-time tune, Granny Will Your Dog Bite, is reported to have 'furious and wonderful energy'. Sounds like a tune I MUST learn soon! It seems there are song versions of this tune too. The original Portland Collection only lists one short verse that goes like this...

Sally, will your dog bite? No, sir, no.
Daddy cut his biter off a long time ago.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

These are a few of my favorite things...

These are my holiday socks, knit by my sister Kathie. She has been busy knitting ALL YEAR long and gifted many of us with her creations. These socks are so comfortable... good fit and great yarn, and really warm to wear around the house as well as with my boots outdoors. She knit Richard a pair of fiddler's gloves, for those of you familiar to fiddling in cold weather, you'll know how important it is for the hands to be warm but the fingers be able to play the strings! I was able to find a pair of 'fiddler's gloves' for SK, they aren't nearly as common as traditional fingered gloves. Still, they are bought commercially, and though they appear fairly home made, they certainly don't have the same love and effort that Kath's knit goods bring along with them.

Thank you Kathie for sharing your gift and love for knitting with us :) We have been fortunate to have Kathie and David join us for music night throughout the year, as often as our busy schedules allow. We wish them a joyous start to the new year and look forward to sharing many more evenings of music and conversation.

Merry Christmas Song

R is for reliable, remarkable, and responsible
I is for the intimate mo-ments
C is for the caring way he looks at me
H is for the handsome way he looks to me.
A is for amazing and athletic and always around
R again for ruggedly handsome guy
D is for dependable, delightful and delectable
All these things together can only be

The only man for me.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

'Twas the night before Christmas...

... and all through the house,
You could hear people talking, quiet as a mouse.
The stockings were stuffed to the cuffs with cool things
Like trinkets and bobbles and barrettes and rings.
The children, all grown now, are toasting good cheer
We're happy to have them at this house this year.

They'll nestle all snug on the couch, in the bus,
on the Aerobed mattress, but NO, not with US :)

The lights, how they twinkle... The tree, how it shines
The yard how it glows with the lights all entwined.
We've had the roast turkey, eight hours it roasted
'No matter, we'll have turkey meatloaf" we boasted.
But even the dinner that almost was wrecked
Could not take away from the halls we had decked.
There was Jen here with Avery from up Hampden way
And Toby, and Bryan, and even SK

With Oscar and Anna lying patiently there
Hoping for a scrap of our pre-Christmas fare.
With Richard and Bryan poring over the computer,
Working with programs to make mapping look cuter
And Toby here finally after a long day of work
And SK on the sofa, me out of my skirt...
We're all here unwinding from a week full of chores
From trips to the malls, to the shops and the stores.
The holiday dinners, the parties and such
Sometimes it all seems to be way too much.

Not to complain or to wish it away,
I'd just like to have one more week, one more day.
But, there are more important things going on
And I'll gladly give up one more store, one more song
Just to have what I have now, what I have in this place
My husband, my health, happy kids, good warm space.
So as Santa and reindeer travel off out of sight
I wish you Merry Christmas and to all a Good Night...

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Bus Stop

As promised earlier, an updated photo of the Bluebird of Happiness. There is JUST enough room in the driveway, as you can see, but PLENTY of room in our hearts and home for Bryan and his pups, Oscar and Anna. The bus is really comfortable, and fully set up for living. Jen, Toby and SK were able to get the grand tour yesterday when they all came for lunch. Our mailman was pretty impressed with the Bluebird too, and asked that we take and print a picture for his son. Bryan will be here for another few days, for any of you who happen to be in the area, stop in for a cup of cheer and a personal tour of the Bluebird. I know Bryan would be happy to show you around and answer any questions you might have on alternative power and RV living.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

If you missed the update on an earlier post, here's another opportunity for you to check out the Fiddle Kids at their 'new' web site, Don't worry though, this blog will continue on for the quick posts. Have you all been checking out Ryan and Natascha's new blog? The first thing I used to check is my email when I got home from work, now I look to see if there have been any new blog posts! I love to see new photographs and stories from everyone!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Kindling the Fire

Richard and I spent Monday evening at Slate's, enjoying the music and voice of Harvey Reid and Joyce Anderson. This is part of the Monday night concert series, a great way to take in some top notch performances in an intimate setting, while feasting on great food. Tonight's concert featured many Christmas songs, perfect relaxing entertainment away from the shopping, parties, chores of the season. The blending of voices and instuments with familiar songs and some other not so familiar ones, you just can't beat live performance! 'Kindling the Fire' is the CD we chose to purchase last night. We considered one of their Christmas CD's but figured with the holidays so close, we'd enjoy this one for longer.

For more information, you can visit and check out the music, schedule, etc. Slate's will start the January series the 9th.

Green Table

Green Table is the name of a fiddle tune in the Portland Collection 2, and is an appropriate title for this post since it was a lovely lunch for the Green family yesterday. The menu included:
Sparkling Apple Cider
Chicken Pie
Mashed Potatoes & Gravy
Carrots, Peas, Beets
Pound Cake with Vanilla Ice Cream and Raspberries
The beautiful bouquet of flowers was compliments of Mom and Pops, as was the Chicken Pie and the beets (I had canned beets from their garden). Mmmmm. (Oh, did you catch the tablecloth? My mom gave us this to dress our holiday table, how fun!)
Update!! Richard and I played 'Green Table' this morning and I really like the tune. If anyone else out there knows it, or tries it out, let me know if you like it too!


Richard and I went to see KING KONG last night. R has been WAITING for this movie to come out, and it has been discussed off and on throughout the past week whether we would go see it in the theater or wait for the DVD. We couldn't wait any longer! We chose to go to a late show here in Augusta, the theater was virtually empty, I mean maybe a dozen people or so. We got the best seats in the house, back row center with NO ONE in front of us (we put our coats over those seats to make it clear we did NOT want anyone there :)

My impressions of the film:
Billed as loooong, but I hardly noticed because I got so caught up in the film
Suspenseful! Lots of action, some of which I had to cover my eyes for
Follows original story line
A love story for all times :)

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Under Construction

The 'Fiddle Kids' are up and running, keeping a good spirit during the holiday season, and looking forward to visiting with family this coming week.

Richard and I are working on reviving an older web site (we were going to use Naked Tuna, but after some discussion and a few comments, have changed our minds and will be using a different web address, soon to be announced). Watch for upcoming information and fun stuff. Comments? Email us at, we'd love to hear from you!

Big News! The Fiddle Kids have found a home at Be sure to put them on your 'favorites' and we'll make a good effort to keep it current.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Up The River

These images were taken this morning along the Kennebec River Rail Trail from Augusta to Hallowell. The snow had started earlier, and the ground was lightly covered with fresh snow... temperatures just under 20'F. It was one of those times when I sensed there were photos to be taken, and as I was snapping images I really felt like theses would be pretty good. I admit, there were plenty that were nothing great, but these three seem especially nice as a set. I like how the little bits of colored leaves and berries almost seem colorizedized against a background of gray shades. We had a delicious breakfast at Slate's as our reward for our morning jaunt. As for the rest of the day, we will quite likely hang out at home, keep the little woodstove burning, and work on some computer projects as the snowflakes continue to drift around outside.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Smiling Boys

Avery came to visit last night while his mom and dad attended a meeting out of town. Toby arranged his schedule so he could see his little nephew too. It was a fun evening once Avery got settled into a 'new' place... laughing, talking, smiling. He was a little interested in the tree, but more in an effort to touch the lights (mini lights that are NOT at all hot!) He WAS interested in the buttons on the front of the television and in the buttons on the remote, haha.
He definitely likes to snuggle, which I had no problem with at all :)

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Midnight on the Water

We just got back a little after midnight from the regular second Saturday North Yarmouth contradance... Richard and I had a great time playing at the first dance of the evening (the Family Dance) with friends... Though I've always enjoyed this particular dance, it is now just about my favorite because not only do we get to dance to great music and calling later in the evening, but we get to be on the other side of the dance floor, playing tunes and watching others dance...

It seems sometimes that I just don't get to play enough fiddle... and then I have to realize that we are playing quite a bit these days. Richard and I are lucky to share dancing and fiddling together, but we're also lucky that we have found each other... partners in the truest sense of the word. It is quite a thrill to be dancing down the floor and be in my sweetie's arms... Now if I could just create the time and space to play more each day, hmmmm, more hours in the day?

What are the activities or values that hold your relationships together?

Friday, December 09, 2005

Harvest Home

Joline and Danny have harvested this beautiful house in Virginia Beach, VA for themselves and their family. A lovely two story with a pool and hot tub in the back yard, this home comes with four bedrooms, two and a half baths, kitchen, dining room, formal living room, family room, two car garage, and a full two story foyer. Final papers were signed and they closed on their new home this afternoon. CONGRATULATIONS... we are all so happy for you! Enjoy your new home :) This property used to be part of a large farm which now occupies a few acres behind their house. This is part of what sold the place to Joline, the sense that there was real farming going on and that they could be close to city services and still have a feel of the country in their back yard. A winning combination, I think.

Joline has plenty of storage and work space in her new kitchen. Overhead task lights illuminate the counter areas, the center island encourages participation in meal preparation, and a special feature I especially like is the pantry closet with the sensor light... it turns on when you enter the room, and turns off automatically so no one has to turn on a switch... no wasted energy there! The kitchen opens into the dining room and also has a half wall to the family room. The space just to the left of the photo has a breakfast nook which leads to the screened porch and the back yard where you will find the pool and hot tub.

This home is going to provide a lot of fun and relaxation for this busy family!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Shadow Play

Bryan and I went out to the Pine Tree State Arboretum last winter and had fun doing these images from the boardwalk. Although this is an archived photo, I thought I'd bring it out in anticipation of tomorrow's snow forecast.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Farewell to Whiskey...

and hello to Pomegranate Martinis. Kathy brought the drinks and the really cool square martini glasses, which were easier to drink out of than you may imagine. We had a nice assortment of hors'd'oerves including cranberry & brie pastries, chicken pizza, sausage dip & crackers, and for a sweet treat we had German cookies from Kathy's daughter-in-law Natasha. After a little food and drink, and some knitting, we sang a few Christmas carols together. All in all, it was a very special evening. Thanks to Wendy for hosting Sister's Night.

Basket of Yarn

This evening was Sister's Night, the first we've had for quite a while, I guess because we got busy during the summer and fall... Anyway, it was suggested we get together and teach Courtney (my niece, center of photo) to knit and that we combine it with Sister's Night... Deb looks on here while Kathy shows Courtney a few tips...

Sister's Night started a couple of years ago when Kathy got us together to go see Lyle Lovett in concert... We had such a good time at dinner and the show that we made a pact to try and get together regularly and not let so much time pass us by... We did a pretty good job for the most part for about a year and a half I think... Anyway, I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed our 'girl' time until the past couple of weeks when I was looking forward to this evening... Will have to make it a point to do it more often... It was really fun to have Courtney join us too!