Wordless Wednesday

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Mark Twain

Mark Twain (Samuel Langhorne Clemens) was a great American writer (Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn) with a caustic sense of humor who sometimes said it best.


Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.

Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.

There are basically two types of people. People who accomplish things, and people who claim to have accomplished things. The first group is less crowded.


🇺🇸 Let’s be part of the first group today – take time to vote. 🇺🇸

Comments are closed. Cast your ballot – that will be a big enough statement. 🙂

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Thursday Doors

When you spend the majority of your adult life in the Midwest, there are a couple of things you take for granted – smoked meats and exceptional BBQ.

Then you move to New Hampshire, and have a rude awakening because those two things aren’t really on the menu up here. So, when I was in Canterbury touring the Shaker Village, and a fellow Master Gardener mentioned smoked meats, my ears perked right up.

Down the road a couple of miles and a right turn onto a dirt road, and what did we find but the Fox Country Smoke House in an absolutely charming rustic building.

What a great old building.  I even smiled looking at that curved smoke stack. Now, let’s open that door and go inside and see what we can find.

There were eight of us ladies shopping, and I was pulling stuff out of the coolers as fast as I could. All I could think about was how happy my husband was going to be when I got home.

We’ve tried the Canadian Bacon, Spicy Bacon, Pork Chops, and part of one Pork Loin, and they were all delicious.

88 miles round trip to buy good smoked meat – sounds reasonable to me. 🙂

Linked to Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors, November 1, 2018

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End of October

I labored for three days over a post about last week’s shootings. Before, I could hit publish I then read about a shootout in a McDonalds restaurant. Living in today’s society is like traveling back in time to Dodge City on a Saturday night, but Matt Dillon is out-of-town.

Then, I read Another Slice’s post about last week’s events and decided that it was better than anything I could write on the subject. Take a look if you have a minute.

I’ve also been painting. We have a small four-season porch with brown resin wicker furniture. I’ve wanted to paint it white for several years but have resisted because of concerns about the paint chipping.

After a lot of googling, I chose Krylon Fusion paint. Sixteen spray paint cans later, all five pieces are white, and I like the change.

Will the paint last? Good question because when I bumped them getting them back in the house, the paint chipped off. So, I touched it up, and we’ll see how it goes.

Last Thursday, I went to a Master Gardener meeting where a landscape architect gave a presentation about how she works up a plan, types of plants she uses, and the climate changes she learned about at a national convention the previous week.

Photo credit: PBS

She was around 50 +/-, and said that in her ‘lifetime’ New Hampshire would go from growing zone 5 to 7 or 8.

Think about that for just a minute.

If we go to a 7 or 8 growing zone, the ski industry will be a thing of the past, the sugar maples will die from heat and pollution, and the maple syrup industry will be over in this country. If New England increases two growing zones, what does that mean for Florida and all of its fruit growers, as well as the rest of the country? It really is mind-boggling.

To help me digest this growing zone issue, I enjoyed some pumpkin dip with fresh apples and ginger snaps. It was brought by a friend who tries to eat healthy so she took the original recipe and dropped the two cups of powdered sugar and added the maple syrup – it’s very good. Kind of ironic, that she added maple syrup after the previous conversation.

Pumpkin Dip:

  • 15 oz pumpkin purée
  • 8 oz whipped Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 t pumpkin pie spices
  • 1/4 c maple syrup

Mix all together.  Add spices and maple syrup to taste.

So, as we move toward the first of November, take care of yourself, hug those you love, eat something delicious just because, and stay safe.

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Thursday Doors

The Shaker Village in Canterbury, New Hampshire, is one of the few Shaker communities still open to visitors. The Shakers came to America from England in late 1774 and were part of the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing.

Today, there are 25 original buildings, four reconstructed, and 694 acres of rolling pastures and gardens available to walk and learn. In 1969, the Shaker Village was established as a non-profit museum, and in 1993 it was declared a National Historic Landmark.

Tours, special events, exhibits, craft demonstrations, and the museum store shopping are a few of the ways you can learn more about the Shakers and enjoy the wonderful views. During the summer season, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, there is also a Café at the Horse Barn for lunch, dessert, and snacks.

Several sites, both authentic and modern, are available for rent to hold meetings, weddings, or private parties. This is how I came to be there last weekend because the NH Master Gardeners held a fall meeting there including a tour and a catered luncheon.

Doors? There were so many doors, my head was spinning. Almost every building had two doors because the sisters and brothers each had their own entrance. And for bonus shots – I saw one second floor door with no stairs, and an outhouse with two doors.

In 1850, there was a population of 300 in Canterbury. The only remaining active community now is in Sabbathday, Maine, with two residents, one brother and one sister.

Sabbathday Shaker Village covers 1800 acres, 17 historic structures and hosts special events such as the Maine Festival of American Music, nature hikes, Maine Farm Day, Apple Saturdays, Shaker Christmas Fair, and many Shaker inspired craft workshops throughout the year conducted by local Maine artists.

Shaker Trivia:

  • They were first referred to as Quaking Shakers because they trembled during worship services
  • They have believed in equality for men and women since the 1700’s
  • They preferred rural communal living
  • Favored simplicity in dress and speech
  • Their largest population of 300 in Canterbury was in 1850
  • Shakers were celibate and did not believe in procreation so they adopted children
  • They were pacifists
  • Canterbury Shakers patented a washing machine in 1876

Linked to Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors, October 25, 2018

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Thursday Doors

In 1785, shipping merchant, Jonathan Hamilton, built this Colonial Revival Estate in South Berwick, Maine, overlooking the Salmon Falls River.

During the American Revolution, Hamilton expanded his mercantile business to include shipbuilding, timber harvesting, partial ownership of local mills, and sugar plantations in Tobago, West Indies. His base of operation was in Portsmouth, but he built ships and loaded and unloaded materials at this site.

Today, the Hamilton House is part of Historic New England which endeavors to preserve and share thirty-eight historic homes, farms and landscapes throughout New England.

I visited Hamilton House in August with fellow gardeners, and the gardens and flowers were at their peak.

As a bonus, at the edge of the property is this beautiful barn. I know I’m prejudiced, I think every barn is beautiful. Besides being handsome, I’ve never seen a barn door quite like this one.

We’ve certainly left August behind and moved well into October. The heat officially goes on tonight because we’re dropping down to 28°F. I’m not mentally psyched up, but Mother Nature is ready to rock and roll right into winter because they’ve already had snow flurries up north. I’m still not getting that snow shovel out – yet.  ❄️

Linked to Norm Frampton’s, Thursday Doors, October 18, 2018

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gardens not candy bar. 🙂

Although, Milton Hershey did create the 5¢ Hershey candy bar in 1900 with the almond variety being added in 1908. According to Candy Central this year, the simple Hershey Bar still ranks #4 in the world as most popular.

In 1937, he wanted to build a nice 3.5 acre rose garden for his community with a special area devoted to his wife, Catherine. Today it covers 23 acres of botanical delight and includes around 7,000 rose bushes.

So, last Friday, my sister-in-law and I headed west from Reading to check out the gardens.

Situated below the 5-star Hotel Hershey and above the Hershey Amusement Park and Hershey Park Stadium, the gardens include an amazing variety of rare trees, shrubs, and roses. There is also a very nice hands-on children’s garden.

It has nice wide walking paths through the gardens, but it is situated on a hill so it is not like walking on a flat surface. It might provide a slight challenge for some.

Next to the beauty of the vast rose garden is the unbelievable wonder of the Butterfly Atrium. I’ve been to butterfly exhibits before, but never have I seen 25 varieties with about 300 flying around.

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It is a very inviting garden, and a wonderful place to spend a few hours enjoying the interesting selection of trees, shrubs, and flowers. We even saw a wedding that was taking place under an archway in the rose garden.

Milton Hershey summed up the garden best when he said:

The more beautiful you can make the place look, the better life the people will have.

Posted in Gardening, Traveling | Tagged , , , , | 37 Comments