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Oct
09
2014

Beautiful Autumn Day in Vermont

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As promised, second installment of October 2013 Vermont vacation.

These photos are of mine and Robbin’s trip to Bennington and Beyond :) We didn’t really have a plan when we started out that morning.  It was the only day we really did just say “Let’s just go. And see where the winds of this Autumn day take us.”  And wow was that the way to go!  It was a gorgeous day and we had a blast!  We even accidentally drove over the state line so we could say we went to New York that day as well.

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Now that’s the kind of church I can get behind!  Separation of church and state! What a concept !! ;) (Read: sarcasm) I don’t do politics on my blog (yet) but it’s not because I don’t think about it or have opinions.  I have opinions in spades! Just suffice it to say I, for one, do not want to live in a theocracy.  You do your thing, I’ll do mine, MKay? LOL.  It is a beautiful building and still holds services.  I had a very emotional reaction to standing in the church dreaming of what it must have been like back in 1762 – to be one of the women who help establish a community.

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If I were one of the family members I would beg the “head of the house” to request this box – Lucky Number 13!

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And this would be my views of the church from my perch in Box 13.  Imagine it packed full and the whole place vibrating with the sound of voices singing to the heavens.

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From the looks of the percussion instruments along with this amazing organ – they maybe quite the modern sounding congregation.

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And as services ended we would stroll home along the fence row,

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And into the cemetery to lay a flower or two on the graves of loved ones who most certainly had found their way there.

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I love the look of the old headstones.  Such craftmanship.

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And then THERE IT WAS! Robert Frost’s grave.  OH MY – did we not know it would be there??  Had we even thought of it?  I mean we talked about him at length when we were up at Bread Loaf looking around and wondering what it would be like to be part of a “writer’s colony” – how fabulous would that be?  I mean it would help to be writers of course but oh if the walls could talk!

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This photo is quite possibly the favorite of all times. Lovely lighting.  Taken in my favorite place (besides home) in the world. My favorite month.  With my oldest and dearest girlfriend. And Autumn showing it’s truest colors.  Bliss I tell you. Pure Bliss.

Before I bid you farewell for today I leave you with the promise of an other installment involving a photo essay of our tour of Robert Frost’s home and  the funniest story of the day. It was time to stop for lunch and we saw this little place along the road just outside Bennington.  It was like the old fashioned burger joint – only seating was in your car or at a few picnic tables.  They had quite a menu that even advertised a “veggie burger”.  Robbin, being vegan, asked the man taking orders what was in the veggie burger.  And I swear to you, he had to have his 100th birthday in his sights.  He looked at her for what seemed like much longer than it was and without changing his expression he says “vegetables”.  LOL we just died laughing.  So she was brave and ordered it, I had fried clams if you were wondering.

See you all soon!  Hey, tell your friends about this blog.  Pretty please?  Thanks and have a wonderful October day!

Oct
06
2014

Happy Fall 2014 Y’all!

Hope this quick post finds you all well and enjoying cooler temperatures and getting ready for All Hallow’s Eve.  I will have a couple of very nice giveaways coming up so check back often or follow me on twitter and facebook.

I thought I would share some of my Autumn decor with you all.

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I LOVE Halloween – almost as much as Christmas.  Almost.  I have a new hat for the occasion!  Need a new hat?  Check out Evercrumbly & Witch on Etsy.

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And my dress should be here by the end of the week!  Do you still have room in your closet for a new frock?  Check out HolyClothing! I chose this one:

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So there’s all the news that is news around here.  Happy Fall Y’all!

Aug
05
2014

Farm Fresh From Vermont

Update: The goal was met and Swan&Stone are headed to NYC!!! Thanks to everyone who helped make this possible!!

If you have ever visited my blog you know my love of all things Vermont. Vermont is my happy place. Anytime I get the opportunity to share it, I take that opportunity. And I take it seriously. I have something really special to share today.

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It’s not often you see the word millinery. I found Swan&Stone a couple of years back when they were Little Hill Woolworks and bought a hat right then and there!

Collaborators Samantha Stone and Nora Swan, both former New Yorkers, are the brains, hearts and hands behind Swan&Stone. Both have contributed fascinating halves that make the whole of all that is now a thriving millinery housed in The Granary in quintessential, bucolic Brandon, Vermont.

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Robbin, my oldest and dearest friend, and I were treated to a personal tour of Swan&Stone when we were in Brandon last October. Yes, Vermont in October. Heaven on Earth! Our tour guide was Kelly, whom I met through the wonderful world wide web when we were both in business – she owned a handcrafted lollipop business and I owned Dahlem’s Soapworks. I don’t remember exactly how we met, but it was meant to be. Kelly is an amazing mom and friend AND an extraordinary photographer. I have given her credit on the photos that belong to her – though you could probably tell already – they are amazing.

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Stepping into Swan&Stone is a feast for the eyes for anyone – but for a couple of women who love Vermont, LOVE handcrafted, LOVE sustainable products, LOVE locavore culture, LOVE farms and sheep and hats…well our breaths were taken away! We tried on hats, admired and admonished our choices, and had an amazing and educational visit with Samantha. I am kicking myself for not purchasing my favorite of the day – a felt beauty that was a little steampunk, a little country with lot of attitude – you know, like me! LOL! The trim on it was bits & bobs of metal found after Hurricane Irene wreaked havoc on beautiful Brandon back in August of 2011.

There are numerous articles written about Swan&Stone online and I will give you links at the end of this post. But the words that are their own are the best. What interesting women, business owners, and artisans. I have to admit, I will never look at hats the same. I say all the time: I wish people still wore hats. WELL, people do! Bold people. Confident people. People who don’t bend and give to the latest fashion trend. That’s what I love about Sam & Nora’s creations – they are timeless. Beautiful, extraordinary, handmade hats for now and forever.

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wooden hat blocks

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one of a kind hats for men

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hats waiting for embellishments

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LOVE the blue!!

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photo credit: Kelly McCullough

there’s something for everyone!

felt hats, straw hats, fascinators, kids’ hats, hats for brides

These are literally farm to head hats!

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photo credit: Kelly McCullough

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photo credit: Kelly McCullough

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photo credit: Kelly McCullough (I need this one framed)

Now Samantha and Nora have a once in a lifetime chance to show their hats to the world! After a rigorous jury process they have been invited to show and sell their hats at the 2014 Grand Central Holiday Fair! Yes! THAT Grand Central – in New York City! There is a little bump in the road, a catch if you will – the $16K entrance fee. But you know what? This is very doable – and you, me, we can help them meet that challenge head on (no pun intended) and become the famous milliners they are destined to be. I believe in what Swan& Stone is doing. Grass to market isn’t just about food anymore. Every product that is made from sustainable goods should be readily available to consumers who care about that very important factor in producing goods & services. Fine hats should be no exception. So please visit their KickStarter page and contribute.

Every little bit will help them realize their dream.  AND you too can own an original Swan&Stone creation with your contribution.

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Please do you and me both a favor and follow the link, visit Swan&Stone’s Kickstarter Page and help this woman owned and operated business show in NYC! You know what they say: If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere. And Samantha and Nora deserve this opportunity – they have worked so hard and offer beautiful handcrafted hats that anyone would love.

Be sure and watch the video on your visit to their kickstarter page. There is also an easy “go to” link in the right column – check it out!

You can read more about Swan&Stone here:

You can also follow them on twitter @ https://twitter.com/swanandstone and find them on Face book @ https://www.facebook.com/pages/SwanStone-Millinery/187059057992815

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With warmest regards,

Susan

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