Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Between the Sunflowers

It is not often I take an entire day to do nothing. But one late summer day, I did just that and I actually wrote a poem - a very rare occasion indeed. Before the snow comes, I thought I would share this one last glimpse into the summer we barely had. To help paint a picture, below the poem are some pictures of my first ever sunflower garden in my first ever stone walled garden...

Not planning to sit in the grass
Playing with horses across the field
As they play with the heron
Between bites of apples
I gather for them between observations

Between reality and dreams
A lazy September day in the sun
With plump cats supplying never ending greetings of peace
Purrs and bees - a song of harmony on the farm

Possibly woodpeckers flit
Between tree trunks and sunflowers
Cats disturb peace with mouse captures
Miniature frogs and baby snakes escape
I pull sage from the garden
And place it in last night's smoldering fire
All stands still for the aromas floating between sunflowers.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Rainbows, Farmhouses & Apples Oh Wow!

Last week was a glorious week of Vermont Vibing. On my way home from getting a roof rack on the new Vibe (where I passed by my old Vibe sitting sadly in the lot), I followed a rainbow home. I think a lot of Vermonters followed that rainbow and I was warmed by the other kindred spirits out there pulling over and taking pictures as I did. I had to scoff at those who wanted to be annoyed - where are your blood pressures at? Check out my route home following the rainbow!

Interesting how a few days before, The Mitch and I had a fire and I proceeded to sing both "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and "The Rainbow Connection" and we listened in love as they reverberated across the farmlands we live amidst.

This weekend The Mitch and I were Vermont homesteaders with an unstoppable force. We cleared out the gardens, finished that all important "fall weeding," added compost and mulch, and turned our compost for use next spring. Then we came inside and washed all windows, finished some basement insulating, and weather proofed the outside of our crazy windows. Now I just have to do some patchwork inside from last year's weather proofing. This was only Saturday...

On Sunday my most excellent friend Tay came over and we held our long tradition-ed "apple day!" We Vibed over to Boyer's Orchard & Cider Mill and bought already picked apples. Apple Day is a baking day and we have long learned our lesson that if we try to pick apples, we are baking until midnight. Here I am at Boyer's after we bought our apples as well as some cheese, onions, tomatoes, and potatoes - we can't help ourselves! Notice my groovy hat and hand warmers I am sporting which I purchased Saturday morning at the CVU Craft Fair (to benefit Access CVU) before I even began my house projects - serious motivation!

Tay and I then headed back to the Charlotte Farmhouse and rolled dough, peeled and cored apples, and baked and baked and baked. I must say the organizational skills of my crazy Vermont public relations business are definitely seeping into my cooking and baking alter-ego. I spent Sunday morning getting everything ready for when Tay arrived and even managed to make some local beef handmade meatballs for The Mitch and I for dinner while all the apple crapple was baking. This type of insanity keeps peeps like me sane! And check out the glorious results!!!!

Monday, October 12, 2009

My Pontiac Love Affair

I am still wallowing. The new Vibe is cute, faster, easier to drive, and the XM is the bomb!

But...I miss the style of the old Vibe.

So, in an effort to say goodbye, I will reminisce on all of my previous Pontiacs...

First, there was the 1988 Pontiac Bonneville. I drove this beast in high school and on and off during times in college when I needed a car (as determined by my parents). This car probably has the most stories of fun so I'll list a few faves:
~ It only had and AM/FM radio so I bought a funny little tape player and tons of batteries and had it sit on the bucket seat in the front with me and I blasted The Indigo Girls, Tori Amos, and The Cranberries.
~ One day a crew of gals drove around in "Big Black" as we called it with Barbie Dolls stuck in the windows, flapping in the wind.
~ Another time a group of probably the same gals dressed in all black and played Spy Girl at the homes of cute boys we knew - we left Big Black idling for a quick escape.
~ My parents were very clear that is was THEIR car and I had to earn the privilege to drive it over and over and over. So, when I got pulled over for expired registration when I was 17, I told the police officer it was my father's car and the ticket needed to be made out to him.
~ Pictured here was a sweetheart the year between high school and college just before we embarked on my first Vermont weekend getaway without parents.

Then there was the 1993 Pontiac Bonneville (I LOVED the sedans). This one I bought from my dad for an undisclosed low budget amount after I convinced him I could not move to Nashville, TN after graduating from college and hope to find a job if I was all sweaty before each interview because the '88 Bonneville didn't have air conditioning. I think my mother also told him she would not have me driving from Massachusetts to Tennessee in a 1988 car in 1998. Whatever the reason, I got the '93 and cruised off to Nashville. The car made the trip back North two times - the second being when I moved to Vermont. It also had the most drastic transmission issues ever. I got the transition fixed by a horrific transition chain (hey - I was 22 - still a baby) for which I had to take out a loan. The transmission casing fell off one week later and the chain said my warranty wouldn't cover it - one week later! Nothing like getting played like a chick! So, I asked the women at work who seemed to be the types whose husbands worked on cars what I should do and was told to get the transmission casing welded in place. I found a welder and for a couple hundred bucks got the casing welded in place, knowing that when the transmission went again, the '93 Bonneville was done. It worked - made it to Vermont the next summer and the car lasted a whole year later...

In September 2001 I was heading out for a singing gig (back when I was in a real band) and the transmission wouldn't start. I had a breakdown and was furious that none of the boys watching me across the street offered me a ride as I stood there all decked out with a mike stand in hand. So I clippity clopped my way to the cab building in Burlington's North End - and now I was all sweaty. The next day I got a ride to Shearer Pontiac in South Burlington as they were the closest Pontiac dealership and I knew nothing else about cars. My 25 year old self couldn't exactly afford a Bonneville, but I could afford to lease a 2003 Grand Am. It was red (ick) and had manual windows (sigh), but within three hours I had myself a new car and haven't had an issue ever since. The lease was great because I didn't have to deal with welders and the miles worked because I had a short commute.

But I really didn't like the Grand Am - not my style at all. So I waited patiently and when they introduced the Vibe in that timeframe I became obsessed and when I had the option to end the Grand Am lease a bit early for good behavior, I jumped and Shearer really worked the numbers with me to be able to afford the Vibe for which I am very grateful. And I vibed, and vibed, and vibed (noting the "vibing" outings started in reality living on the backroads growing up and "bushwhacking" in the car looking for land with my parents to build a house on). And before I knew it, this lease was up and the 2006 Vibe which made me famous is now the 2010 Vibe - last line of Vibes, last car on the lot, last make of Pontiac made. What will the future hold???

PS - If you are interested, the famous 2006 Vibe might still be for sale at Shearer!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Breaking News!!!

In a quick, last minute, crazy development, I have sold the famous Vermont Vibe which has made the Vermont Vibes Blog famous across the country! I can't believe it! I even shed tears - I mean it! My lease was drawing to a close and I had the option to buy my beloved Vibe which is what I have been planning since I started Vibing in it in 2006. But my favorite car dudes at Shearer in South Burlington offered me a deal I couldn't ignore to purchase the very last Pontiac Vibe on the lot and one of the very last Vibes that will ever be made!

With the country in economic drama (anyone else who is my age Gen-Xer will say, "So what? We've been in recession since we graduated from college!"), anyway, the drama caused Pontiac to shut it down and make their last line of cars in 2009. But because the Vibe is so awesome they made a limited number of Vibes only in 2010. And financially speaking, with long term planning realities, the decision to buy a new 2010 Vibe as opposed to the 2006, well, it'll be wiser in the long run. I am sad about my passed along Vibe and I will have to get used to a new look and feel without any preparation to do so (and if you know me, you know I plan, and plan, and plan). But.....when I look at the fact that I have purchased my first brand new car EVER ~ AND ~ I have one of the last Vibes made EVER, I feel pretty groovy knowing I will be able to continue Vermont Vibes for a long time to come...

But beware, the new Vibe is black, sleeker, quieter, and all around sneakier - meaning just when fame was about to catch up, I am now back in incognito mode, Vibing around with the Mitchezzzz - on your guard Vermont....heeheehee.