Thursday, January 21, 2016


The temperatures have gotten quite cold, and the wind has made the whole process of waiting for the bus in the morning a bit miserable. So, it's January in New Hampshire, and to be expected.

What's not to be expected is the way that the snow keeps missing us. We've only had three storms of any substance this season, dropping a total of less than 15 inches of accumulation. Good news for me and my broken snowblower, not so good for the ski resorts.

Even worse is the prediction for above-freezing weather next week, the last week of January. I don't know if all of this means a short winter or a late winter, but for now I'm enjoying the lower heating bill (made even lower by a drop in propane prices), and a break from shoveling the white stuff.

Neither of my boys is involved in any winter sports this year, so they aren't complaining about the better weather, and it's made Tom's commute, now all the way to Dover (more than 30 miles each way) a lot less harrowing.

Still, it feels odd not to have piles of snow in the front yard that are taller than I am this late in the season. Not that it hasn't happened since we moved to the Lakes Region, but it hasn't happened since we moved into this particular house.

But maybe I shouldn't say anything. I mean, I don't believe in jinxes, but....

At least I don't think I believe in jinxes.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Not Our New Look

Obviously, a big change in the website, but this is not the facelift I mentioned in my most recent post. It's just a temporary little dedication to our latest craft project, our little cardboard "putz houses." We teamed up with Karen to make these as holiday gifts, which we have mostly shipped out (with a few exceptions).

I'll probably keep this version up for awhile as I gather new portraits and experiments with new looks for the site. I know that it will include more pages like the one I put together for the putz houses. The engine that displays that page can be used for other craft project, recipes, or anything that needs a good display of step-by-step or sequential photos.

I think I'm also going to let the front page run a bit longer, still with a daily picture near the top, but with more pictures and text available without having to leave the front page.

I don't know yet exactly what all that stuff will be, or what it's going to look like. But you'll see it when it gets uploaded, and you'll have to let me know what you think.

By the way, there are a couple of things missing from this current version. The help page is gone, but I'm hoping the new site won't need one. The links page is gone just because some of my new formatting broke it and I still need to fix it. It might be obsolete, too, as I move more links to the front page.

And, as you can tell, the portraits are gone. They were outdated anyway, but new ones will come with the new look. Keep up with us. There's lots happening this year.

Friday, January 01, 2016


I think I'm going to have a lot of trouble writing checks for the next couple of months. The last year slid right by, and here, already, comes the year when William will be old enough to drive. Yikes! 2015 went out with a bit of a bang, with our first real snow snarling up traffic just a few days before the end of the year.

A fair amount of that snow is already gone, and the temperatures will be rocking back and forth between surprisingly mild and bitterly cold for the next week or so. And so it's time for us to get started on a fresh new year.

Since all five of us, through a happy set of coincidences, have the first three days of the year off, we're going to spend some time this weekend setting goals for the coming year. I've already been working on mine for a couple of days, which include releasing two (maybe three) new books, and an album with five existing and five new songs.

Karen and I are also starting a new website this year, called The Not-So-Tiny House, about the idea of building, not the big house, or the tiny house-on-wheels, but a house that's just the right size, as we are planning to do when Karen retires. We're hoping to share our ideas with a lot of people in the same situation, whether they are retirees or small families or singles, who just want enough space to live in, and not a lot of overhead or hassle.

Our website is going to get a facelift this year, as is my professional site, which I'm attempting to make look more, well, professional.

There are also a lot of projects in the house, naturally, and a few other personal goals. It's bound to be a busy year.

We hope you'll spend at least a little of it catching up with us here on this blog and our family website. Happy New Year!