Anniversary Celebration

We recently celebrated our 28th wedding anniversary! Love my man! We feel so blessed for all the years we've had together! Technohubby planned a surprised getaway for the two of us to the historic, beautiful, and romantic Hancock Inn, the oldest inn in New Hampshire (c. 1789).


One of the previous owners of the inn was a man with the last name of Fox, and the inn's doorknocker (as well as other little touches throughout the inn) bear witness to that bit of history.


We stayed in the Franklin Pierce room. Franklin Pierce is the only U.S. president to hail from the state of New Hampshire, and was a personal friend of the inn's original owner.



This is a cozy reading nook tucked under the eaves just off the second floor sitting room.


We took ourselves on a self-guided walking tour of the historic district of Hancock using a handbook the inn owned. We enjoyed following the map and reading about each building along charming Main Street in Hancock. Here's a glimpse at a few.





Hancock's meetinghouse is one of the finest anywhere. It was built c. 1820, and we learned, through our guide, that it was moved to its present location in 1850. Can you imagine moving such a structure?...in 1850?!? But more than that, it was raised and a town hall installed on the first floor, making the sanctuary on the second floor. The second floor windows were then lengthened. The side view clearly shows the building alterations.



We had a lovely dinner later that night. I had their famous cranberry pot roast. Yum! And the next morning, we enjoyed an incredible full breakfast, accompanied by the innkeepers' dog, Potter. So sweet!



We really couldn't recommend the Hancock Inn enough! Just fabulous!

Furthering the Beauty


The Easter tablescape was taken apart Easter evening, but I snagged the vase of all white blooms for my kitchen windowsill. White flowers are my favorite! They're just sitting there...in the sunshine...making me happy!

Easter Celebration

We had a joyous Easter celebration, and hope you did too! The four of us had a breakfast of omelettes and of pastries that...were not homemade...because sometimes, we just Trader Joe's! Then we went to church and heard a fine sermon and sang praises to God for His gift of salvation in Christ!

Then it was home for an egg hunt with the grandkids. I made the girls coordinating Easter dresses and wool coats. So fun to sew for them! The coats were lined in the same fabric as the dresses. 


It was a fun year for egg hunting, because (except for the littlest one), all the kids were old enough to fully participate. Such fun watching them!





Credits for the beautiful table and all the baking this year go to Colette!


An impromptu invitation to a young couple to join us resulted in a great deal of silly fun, balancing checkers on noses and eyes.


An unattended Easter basket was a score for the dog! (Pretzel fishie crackers and teddy grahams.)


A fun gathering of friends and family around the table! Precious memories!


Easter Sunday


Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia!
Earth and heaven in chorus say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply, Alleluia!

Love's redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids him rise, Alleluia!
Christ has opened paradise, Alleluia!

Lives again our glorious King, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now thy sting? Alleluia!
Once he died our souls to save, Alleluia!
Where's thy victory, boasting grave? Alleluia!

Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like him, like him we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!

Hail the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!
Praise to thee by both be given, Alleluia!
Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!
Hail the Resurrection, thou, Alleluia!

King of glory, soul of bliss, Alleluia!
Everlasting life is this, Alleluia!
Thee to know, thy power to prove, Alleluia!
Thus to sing, and thus to love, Alleluia! 

Easter Menu


Easter Menu

Appetizers

- fresh vegetables with dip -
- crackers with Beecher's Macro Polo (black peppercorn) cheese -

Main Meal

- spiral-sliced brown sugar-coated ham -
- skillet roasted baby red potatoes with garden chives, sea salt, and pepper -
- garlic butter roasted carrots -
- fresh fruit salad -
- hard-boiled eggs -
- homemade cloverleaf rolls -

Desserts
- lemon tart -
- chocolate-raspberry cheese cake -

Walking Through Fabric Splendor

Would you like a tour of an amazingly beautiful fabric store? I don't get there often, since it's in another state, but when I'm in Brattleboro, Vermont, I stop in to enjoy the fabric splendor at Delectable Mountain Cloth. It's what I imagine a fine, European fabric store must be like, with every fabric and bauble of the highest quality. Peering in the front window...


And stepping in the door, this is the vast array before us...


Stepping closer, let's admire the pretty buttons! They are all contained in little, glass, antique bowls, and just beckon for you to stir them round with your finger and admire their smooth texture and sparkly qualities!


Love, love, love those pale green buttons (near the bottom, right corner) with the swirly white pattern!



Now let's admire the fabrics! Every one you see is just captivating to the eye and ethereal to the touch! Just look at the array of silks!




Look at the collection of vintage hats in those cases! And don't even get me started on the high quality of the velvet ribbons on the shelves in the back. I do adore velvet ribbon! It's an addiction.


Before we leave, we have to examine these sparkling trims and threads on top of this case. Just what one might need to create a lovely, Downton-esque 1920's evening gown.




Just exquisite! I hope you enjoyed the tour!

Sights and Tastes of Vermont

I have a few more pictures to share from the little excursion Colette and I made to Vermont last week. 

We left early in the morning, so we could eat breakfast at The Copper Grouse, a lovely restaurant in a brand new hotel, the Taconic.



Enjoyed the porch a bit before we left there to visit some of the nearby outlets.


Later, after touring Hildene, we walked around the historic area of Manchester. Our first stop was this shop. While the sign boasted guns, there were none inside. But if Lord and Lady Grantham needed to go to a shop to be properly outfitted for "the grouse", this would be the shop! Gorgeous!



Across the street, was the historic Equinox Hotel dating from the 18th century.


We had a scrumptious dessert in the tavern of The Equinox...flourless chocolate cake with fresh berries, whipped cream, and port reduction. Mmmm.


The church across the street from The Equinox.


And what would a trip to Vermont be without stopping to admire a covered bridge (even if you're being blinded by the sun)?



Happy St. Patrick's Day!

In celebration of St. Patrick's Day, we had lunch in a local Irish pub. The street was lined with American flags on one side and Irish flags on the other.


Wearing o' the green!


Lunch!


For dinner I made Potato Cheddar Irish Ale Soup. And dessert was Chocolate Stout Cake with Chocolate Bourbon Frosting. A quite delicious day! And a beautiful sunset to end it all.


Happy St. Patrick's Day to you!

Smashed Potato Recipe

Tomorrow is St. Patrick's Day! If you're like me, you're scrambling to come up with a fine, Irish meal for your family. Well...probably you're not like me. I'm the rare individual who simply can't stand corned beef and cabbage. So, I'm challenged each year to come up with a tasty alternative. Although this is hardly an "authentic" recipe, if you're looking for a tasty potato side dish for the day, here's a super easy one that my family is just wild about!

Smashed Potatoes

baby potatoes (1-2 lbs.) - any variety you like, or a mixture of varieties
olive oil
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
kosher salt
freshly cracked pepper
chopped chives

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Scrub the potatoes and place on parchment lined, rimmed baking sheet.


Bake in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, or until potatoes are just barely fork tender. Let potatoes cool for 10 minutes.


With the bottom of a heavy implement (I used a large measuring cup), press firmly and evenly down on the warm potato to smash it. Flatten to about 3/4" thick. Try to press all of them to a fairly uniform thickness.




Brush the smashed potatoes with olive oil.


Sprinkle with salt, minced garlic, and freshly cracked pepper.


Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees, and bake for about 15 minutes more, or until crispy. Sprinkle with chopped chives.


This is a great recipe to serve with meat that needs to rest for 10-15 minutes after you pull it out of the oven. That's the perfect amount of time to pop the potatoes back into the oven for their final 15 minutes. Everything is then perfectly timed to serve hot. Enjoy!
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