Tag Archives: Memories

Mondays are for Memories – That First Cabin Post

Since it’s Monday, and I often do a “Memory” post on these first days of the week, I thought I’d look back to find my very first post about the cabin! It was in September of 2004 – just a month after we started off on this great adventure! There have been some changes here at The Cabin since that post almost 19 years ago – but the sentiment remains the same!

The Cabin – 09/07/2004

Have I told you about the Cabin? It’s a small one-room cabin built by my grandfather in the 1930s. He was the town doctor up here in Bradford, Vermont, and needed a little getaway that wasn’t too far from town. The Cabin, built on the foundation of an old farming settlement about 8 miles outside of town, is on about 100 acres on Wright’s Mountain (elevation 1800 ft+/-). Growing up I remember the cows that wandered through the fields on the way to their upper pasture (and watching out for the cow plops that dotted the grass), the two gas lights that were the only illumination other than candles, and the chemical toilet bucket that my father would ever so carefully carry through the cabin to be disposed of in some unknown (to me) location. The water was hand pumped from the well and the kids were the beasts of burden to get it to the Cabin. There’s a small pond where we would swim and catch salamanders, frogs and fish. Trust me, there’s nothing like a fresh-caught trout for breakfast! Electricity came in the 1960s along with the Destroilet ( a gas toilet – but that’s an entire other story!). A loft was added to accommodate the next generation (as in my kids and my siblings’ kids), and now we even have running water – well, it’s to the shed anyway! The Destroilet died several years ago, and we moved to the good old-fashioned outhouse. It’s a two-holer with all the amenities ~ a magazine rack, pretty curtains, and scented candles.
The Cabin is where I go to re-fuel emotionally and spiritually. The scenery has changed only in the addition of a few houses on the hillside and the growth of new trees. Maybe these pictures will help explain the special qualities of this family gem –

Here is my favorite view – with the cabin reflected in the pond (I know, I know, Lara – I take it every year…but there are little changes every year, honest!)

This is the view from the back porch –

And this is the view from the back porch when we eat dinner…

We took a drive to one of the hills in the above “view from the back porch” to see if we could see the cabin. Well folks, if you look really hard you can see a tiny dot in the middle of this picture – and that my friends is the cabin. And that is also why we feel free to leave the outhouse door open to enjoy the view when we are doing our -ahem- business!

Here is a closer view of the cabin…

OK, so this isn’t the cabin – but it was a pretty neat picture of an old cemetery and church that we came upon in our travels that I thought I’d include it!

And here we are with our friends Joe & Janet who joined us for Labor Day weekend at the Cabin. (Honest, the triple chins are from the way I’m sitting, not from all that ice cream research!)

OK – back to 2023! Those folks in the chairs are looking a bit different these days – but so is the area around that little cabin!
I took this picture yesterday – the angle is different, but I really hadn’t realized how much of the “landscaping” had changed over the years!

…to everything there is a season…

Sunset Memories

Despite what my weather app told me last night, the cool and drizzly weather hung on today. If it crept into the 50’s, it wasn’t when I was outside. That much I know for sure. But regardless of the chill in the air, the delight of being here is not diminished one bit. And we know that brighter days are ahead! Here are some sunset memories to help you (and me!) remember what glory is waiting for us just around the bend!

Mondays are for memories – The Way We Were

Sometimes when you’re going down one bunny trail, you come across a batch of old photos and your heart begins to melt…
1981 – The Cabin
1986 – our Jamison House
1987 – Mt. Washington, NH
1989 – The Cabin
1993 – The Living Room
1997 – Back Porch
2001 – B&B at Mike & Robyn’s wedding
Late 2003 – Back in Jamison
Fast forward 20 years….
Yes, my heart is melting.

Mondays are for Memories – Christmas Memories!

One of the fun holiday things we did while daughter Lara was living in Waco was her Annual(ish) Cookie Extravaganza!

Cookies, Cookies Everywhere – December 14, 2011.

Last Saturday was the “2nd Annual-ish Cookie Baking Extravaganza”. (It was the 2nd annual-ish because, as you might recall this is what her kitchen looked like last year. No cookie baking here!)
But this year she was back on track. Not only on the track but with two ovens this year, thanks to the “summer kitchen” out on the porch (leftovers from her old kitchen)! The recipes were chosen, the invites were out, and the stage was set.
This was the plan – Lara would get all of the ingredients, make up most of the cookie dough ahead of time and have everything ready to go Saturday morning. Everyone pitches in $10.00 and after a day of baking, they all go home with 6-8 dozen fancy Christmas cookies! It was a great deal – and it was great FUN!
Lara got 4 different recipes (4 batches of each) ready Friday night.
And the cookie bakers arrived Saturday morning and the real fun began!
Cookie Extravaganza-1
Let me tell you, there was some heavy-duty cutting and rolling and dipping and decorating going on!
The first cookies were in the ovens by 10:30 AM, and the last batch came out at 6 PM. Now that’s a full day in the kitchen!
Cookie Extravaganza
And I think when all was said and done, only two trays of cookies got a little overdone and didn’t make the distribution cut. Not bad for the total number of cookies that were baked (about 23,879 I think). 🙂
If you’re looking for some great Christmas cookie recipes, here are links for the recipes we used-
Toffee, Homemade Thin Mints, Cinnamon Roll Cookies,
Chocolate Mint Sandwich Cookies, Italian Wedding Cookies, Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprints, Sugar Cookies, White Chocolate Cranberry Blondies,
Soft Gingersnaps.
Phew, that there is a lot of cookies.

And what, you might ask, was Gary doing while we ladies were being kitchen mavens?
He was happy as a clam, building a wood rack for the new fire pit, and then enjoying the pit as he burned all the scrap from the fall projects!

Definitely a good weekend for all involved!

If you want a closer look at the pictures in the collages (along with a couple other random shots) feel free to check them out here.

Mondays are for Memories – Thanksgiving on the Road

I wrote this post in 2014, so there are eight more Thanksgivings to be accounted for, but it seemed like a good place to start! So here you have it – a brief recap of our first 10 Thanksgiving “On the Road” –
November 27. 2014 –
So here we are, in a city park RV spot in Opelousas, Louisiana celebrating our 10th Thanksgiving “on the road”.
Thanksgiving 2014
We have no plans for turkey (here or at Cracker Barrel) and the closest family member (Gary excepted) is over a thousand of miles away. It might be easy to fall into a bit of a holiday-funk, feeling sorry for ourselves with no kids to hug or leftovers to eat. Instead I thought I’d just take a refresher course on how blessed we’ve been on other Thanksgivings since we’ve started this great adventure!
The first three years (2004, 2005, 2006) we were over-the-top blessed to be able to spend them with our good friends the Sensings on Amelia Island in Florida.
Oh how those precious times got us over the hump of being far from family!
In 2007 we DID make it to Ohio for a big ol’ traditional Thanksgiving.
Conrads 2007
New baby and new bride – all Conrads present and accounted for! So much to be thankful for that year!
2008 found us far away in Arizona and enjoying our Thanksgiving day with SOWER friends. We were having such a special time that I never got around to taking any pictures! When I checked back to find the post from that Thanksgiving, I did find this, though –
Rainbow 1
Promises abound!
We spent Thanksgiving 2009 on the road. Tires turning, heading south.
Coachella to San Diego-8
We were driving from the Coachella Valley area of California south to the San Diego area, preparing to pull into our December project on Friday. We enjoyed dinner at Perkins (it was in the parking lot where we spent the night), and while we missed being with the family I knew we would be seeing them at Christmas-time, so my heart was content.
2010 we were in Waco, just getting started on Lara’s big kitchen remodel!
Floor progress-1
Needless to say, we weren’t cooking in THAT kitchen for the holidays, but we did spend the day with good friends of Lara’s (and now ours!), the Swansons. Family, kiddos, and great food – it was a very special holiday!
In 2011 we were parked in Texas (Lindale, actually), but we piled into the truck (including Lara and Denali) and we drove to Ohio for a big ol’ family gathering.
Now that was one wild and crazy and Oh-So-Wonderful Thanksgiving!
Family Picture-7
The family just keeps growing – blessing upon blessing!
We celebrated Thanksgiving back at our favorite Waco campground in 2012 and actually had a sweet little pre-Thanksgiving dinner right at our campsite!
(OK, so the guests hadn’t arrived yet – but you get the idea! =)) We also had another great meal with the Swansons – Yummm!!! It was another lovely holiday filled with much thankfulness!
Just last year we were still in Texas, but all the way down in the Rio Grande Valley. Our day was spent in sweet fellowship with about 20 friends from the church we were attending.
It wasn't family, but it was pretty close! And it did include some small people hugs. Thank you, RGV friends, for a lovely Thanksgiving! ❤️
“We had a lovely day, enjoying the Big Meal with about 20 friends here in the Valley. Enough delicious food to feed an extra 20 folks, just the right amount of little kids to add some sparkle to the day, and sweet fellowship. Add to that a nice little package of leftovers so we could enjoy some turkey later in the weekend – and we would definitely call the day a Win!”
And that brings us up to today! While it’s true that holidays on the road can present certain challenges, it can also present wonderful opportunities for experiencing blessings in unexpected places. Whether we’re sitting in a parking lot campsite or surrounded by friends and family,  we have so much to be thankful for. Today, and everyday!

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
Psalm 95:2

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I have a couple of pumpkin muffins I’d be happy to share if you’d like to stop by!
Pumpkin muffins