Mrs. McCartney’s Tea- Organic Tea from Paul’s Stepmum!

In the winter, I literally will drink tea or cocoa all day. I try to stick to all herbal/low caff in the afternoon though and limit myself to just one cup of cocoa though. Self control with the cocoa can be tough ha.

I love trying new teas, and my family knows it! My aunt got me a variety pack from Mrs. McCartney’s Tea for my birthday and it has been so fun trying the different teas. Mrs. McCartney is Angie McCartney. She was born in Liverpool, UK in 1929 and married Sir Paul McCartney’s father, Jim, in 1964. So she is Sir Paul McCartney’s stepmother. Now she lives in California and sells these amazing, organic, Liverpool/Beatles inspired teas. They are all loose leaf tea in a pyramid tent tea bag and I believe they all have two cups of tea in each bag! A portion of her profits go straight to the Linda McCartney Centre for breast cancer research in Liverpool too, so this is a purchase that gives back!

Here’s how the variety pack and teas are packaged.The sticker labels are all so cute and thoughtfully designed.

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The current variety pack for sale here! I think the only difference is the Penny Lane Peppermint in for the Abbey Road Apple. This is what was in MY variety pack:

*Strawberry Green Fields- low caff herbal

{Soooo good, and it smells amazing too!!}

*Rockstar Rescue- caffeine free herbal

{This tea is so calming and soothing}

*Liverpool Red- caffeine free rooibos

{Rooibos is a tea that not everyone loves, I like it though so this is a great tea for me}

*Golden Slumber- low caff green

{This is a very light light green tea. I had this after the Pats lost on Sunday….it helped}

*50 Shades of Earl Gray- med caff black

{WHOA this is a strong tea! I had some almond milk and sugar with this one :)}

*Maharishi Peach- med caff black

{Great if you like a little fruitiness in your black tea, this is my fiance’s favorite}

*Blue Jay Blueberry – med caff black

{Still need to try!- UPDATE tried it, I didn’t care for this one, for me the blueberry flavor with the black tea was bitter}

*Abbey Road Apple- med caff black

{Still need to try!- UPDATE tried it, it has a very light apple spice flavor, very delicious but not if you steep too long!}

*Good Morning!- med caff black British breakfast

{This is another strong tasting tea for me, but in a good way, a great tea to wake up with!}

Growing up, everyone in my family drank tea. It wasn’t until I learned about Dunkin Donuts in high school that I noticed people drank coffee! My dad likes green tea, and he also likes Irish breakfast teas. My mother is a tried and true Red Rose tea woman. She even collected all the little ceramic animals you could get with the proof of purchase things. The women in my mother’s family are all tea drinkers and I have so many good memories of all of us sitting around my grandmother’s table having tea and goodies. My sister and I would have milk, and the goodie was usually just something from the grocery store, often from Entenmann’s. They used to make a pineapple cheese strudel…so good.

My sister swears by David’s Tea, and she used to be really into Teavana. What kind of tea do you drink? I am always looking for new tea recommendations!!!

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My Last Semester at Umass Lowell

I can’t believe that I am writing this, but this is the first full week of my last semester at Umass Lowell. I went to WPI in Worcester MA for my undergrad degree, but both of my master’s degrees will be from Umass Lowell. I got my Master’s of Education there in 2009, and I will have my Master’s of Science in Biology this May. What can I say, I like school. I was told once, don’t remember by who, that your education is the only thing that can’t be taken away from you….and so as I have lived my life amassing furniture, sporting goods, whatever…I have also been amassing courses.

Umass Lowell was inducted into the University of Massachusetts family back in 1991. It is the second largest MA state school, Umass Amherst is the largest. I have watched over the years as Umass Lowell has transformed from a largely commuter school to a thriving community for students and faculty. There are three campuses at Umass Lowell. North Campus was originally the Lowell Technological Institute (started as Lowell Textile School in 1895) and South Campus was originally Lowell State College which really began as a teacher’s college back in 1898. They are on opposite sides of the Merrimack River and merged back in 1975. The third campus, East Campus, is over by LeLacheur Park, the home of the Lowell Spinners, a minor league team for the Boston Red Sox. That campus has a lot of the dorms and a big dining hall.

Now, there has been construction on campus pretty much since I started there back in 2008. A lot of the buildings have the geometric (ugly) style to them….they kinda look like tetris pieces? There are some buildings that I love though.

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This one is Coburn Hall on South Campus. The South Campus is where the health sciences, humanities, grad. school of education, and some dorms/student center can be found. I love this building. This where the Lowell State College started. The building was designed by Stickney & Austin. It was named after Frank Coburn, the first principal of the school.

The next three are all on the North Campus where the textile school/technological institute was started.

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JFK at the official opening of Cumnock Hall in 1956. This building has a big auditorium, conference rooms, and offices.  Via Pinterest
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Southwick Hall, opened in 1903, dedicated to Royal & Dierexa Southwick for the textile program. Now it’s just classrooms & offices. From a site called flickriver.com, seems to be a dead site now though. 
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Alumni Memorial Library, built in 1949. One of two new buildings along with Eames Hall for the textile school. This is my picture, I kinda have a building crush on it 🙂

The Southwicks were Quakers and abolitionalists and they started the Lowell Carpet Company. Textiles and mills were the main industry in Lowell for the industrial era. Frederick Ayer was the grandson of the Southwicks, and he had a big influence on the textile market in Lowell & Lawrence. The textile program shut down in 1971.

Rejuvenating the mill district in Lowell has been a process. I grew up nearby and have watched the industry come back to Lowell…..new restaurants….mills converted to apartments….new community activities. Lowell is home to the Tsongas Arena, canals that are a beautiful and educational stroll, LeLacheur Park which has more activities than just baseball, and a lovely mill museum. The Textile Regatta in Lowell is usually the first big fall headrace for crew, so much fun, and they have a great folk festival too.

Umass Lowell has been a huge part of bringing Lowell back to life. The school has expanded, made jobs possible, and has really become one of the most underrated schools in a really underrated city. When we think of Massachusetts, maybe our coastline comes to mind. Cape Cod, Boston, and Cape Anne are GORGEOUS, but mill towns have been important to Massachusett’s history too. Lowell is totally worth a visit and Umass Lowell is worth a look for a great (& affordable) university. I will be sad to finish up this spring.

Hope you all had a great weekend!! I will do a post maybe tomorrow with some trail fun pictures from this weekend 🙂

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Irish Wool Knit Sweaters

New England is full of adorable little Irish Americans. Many families in New England trace their heritage to Ireland. Many have relatives still in Ireland. My father’s mother’s parents were from Clifden, in Galway Co. They came over to America and had my grandmother and her brother. Then they sadly died young leaving the two children in the care of cousins that ran something of an Irish immigrant boarding house on Trull St. in Dorchester. Friends and family from Ireland would stay there to get their start. My great uncle Bartley would get the men set up working for the electric or telephone company and the women got set up with jobs at similar companies or cleaning houses. The entire backyard was a victory garden, and the only language heard throughout most of the house would have been Gaelic.

My grandmother was never interested in going to Ireland, but I definitely was! In 2006, my family headed over to Ireland for a vacation. My sister and I both got Irish knit sweaters made from the wool of the adorable little white sheep we saw all over Ireland. Our sweaters are from Avoca, which I really haven’t been able to find online.

Here’s the cardigan I got, still amazing after 10 years! I wore mine yesterday with my plaid LLBean Signature scarf, J Crew Factory chambray shirt dress (old), leggings, and boots.

For sweaters you can find online, one of the more expensive options are the sweaters from Blarney Woolen Mills. We went here on our trip, but I think we had already gotten our sweaters. To see how one of my favorite bloggers, Sarah Vickers styled one of these sweaters on a beautiful sailing trip with the KJP crew, click here.

Hand Knit Aran Sweater $299 / Hand Knit Aran Lumber $299

Cowl Neck Aran Sweater $119 /  Aran Tree of Life Lumber $99

Another website to check out for Irish wool items is the Aran Sweater Market.

Hand Knit Lumber Jacket $148.95 / Hand Knit Honeycomb Aran Sweater $169.95

Aran Lumber Jacket $99.95 / Heavyweight Wool Aran Sweater $88.95

Both of these websites have great items. There are all different sweaters, cardigans, accessories, and capes, but I am sure you can see Aran Sweater Market is a bit cheaper than Blarney Woolen Mills.

Around New England, there are lots of little Irish goods stores. Often these stores will carry some sort of Irish wool sweater. A very popular line of sweaters that you may see are Carraig Donn sweaters. Here’s a cardigan from The Vermont Country Store for $119.95. This company’s products are only sold through distributors, they do not sell directly through their website.

These beautiful sweaters were necessary on the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland. They kept fishermen and farmers warm in the rough weather seen there. When I go back to Ireland, I want to spend more time in Galway, see the family farm in Clifden, and take the ferry over to see the Aran Islands. Which sweater would you want to bring on the trip??

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Remembering Audrey Hepburn

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says “I’m possible” – Audrey Hepburn

Twenty- three years ago today, the world lost Audrey Hepburn. She was 63 when she passed from appendiceal cancer in Switzerland. Audrey’s film career was full of great movies like Roman Holiday (for which she was the first actress to win an Academy Award), Breakfast at Tiffany’s, My Fair Lady, and my favorite, Sabrina. She won many awards for her work in acting. After doing some research, I realize that I have some movies to watch! I have never seen Funny Face!! This weekend is going to be snowmageddon up here in New England so I will probably watch some then….

She was beautiful, trained in classical ballet, and spoke several languages. Audrey is definitely on my list of people I would love to meet that have passed on. I would want to ask her the fluff questions, like who her favorite leading man was, and I would want to ask her the serious questions, like if she could go back and do it all again, would she have become and actress and would she have started out as a huminatarian? I would want to hear her memories of WWII time along with her memories of working with Frank Sinatra.

Audrey Hepburn’s son, Sean Hepburn Ferrer, is the chairman of the US Fund for UNICEF’s Audrey Hepburn Society. He came to a UNICEF women’s luncheon at the Hampshire House in Boston to speak about education. Education was important to Audrey Hepburn and UNICEF and New England has much to offer in the way of educational institutions.

Roaming around Pinterest, I found many amazing snapshots of Audrey.

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There are so many beautiful, fun photos of Audrey. I love the ones of her with horses in Rome when she was filming War and Peace. I love the iconic little black dress from Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the outfit from Sabrina with the black top, black ankle length pants, and ballet flats. She was so much more than an actress and pretty face though. Her work for UNICEF helped children and people in impoverished communities in Africa. The last photo is from a UNICEF trip in Africa. Just 4 months before she died, she went to Somalia and held malnourished babies in her arms, the photos from that trip are terrifyingly beautiful.

Audrey turned to acting because she was told she had too weak a constitution to be a prima ballerina due to her own poor nutrition growing up in war torn Europe. From everything I have read about Ms. Hepburn, I would say that what she may have lacked in physical toughness or strength, she certainly made up for in emotional/mental strength.

“As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others” – Audrey Hepburn

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Winter mountain hike to North and Middle Tripyramid

Yesterday I hiked North and Middle Tripyramid in the Sandwich Range Wilderness of New Hampshire’s White Mountains. They are both little guys, just over 4,100 feet. They are #38 and #39 out of the 48 4000 footers in New Hampshire for me!! We got started just after 10 AM up the Pine Bend Trail to the Mt. Tripyramid Trail. I was able to bareboot it on the trail until we started to climb. Then I had to throw my snow shoes on. Showshoeing for miles, climbing in elevation…..it is hard. This was an in and out hike-we went up over North over to Middle and then back again. There is a South Tripyramid that doesn’t count for “the list” even though it is over 4000 ft because there is not enough elevation dip and gain between Middle and South. If we weren’t pressed for daylight, we would have gone over- maybe when I do it again in the summer sometime.

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The White Mountains is a Winter Wonderland
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Pine Bend Brook and our baby girl, Mizpah

There are really no views from North Tripyramid. Every once and while, peaking out through the trees, I could see the Presidential Range, Mt. Washington’s recognizable white  peak. You can see Mt. Carrigain over that way and the Signal Ridge too.

It was just a quick half hour over to the Middle Tripyramid, and there were some nice views from there. We could see the Waterville Valley Ski Area, Tenney Mountain Ski Area, and we could even see all the way to Killington Ski Resort in VT. We could see Lake Winnipesaukee and Gunstock Mountain Ski Resort too, but I just couldn’t get a decent picture. The Tripyramids are sort of central, you can see a lot of other familiar mountains from there.

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Waterville Valley Ski Resort and Mt. Tecumseh, then way in the back is Mt. Moosilauke, and then back to the foreground, the Osceolas
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Summit of Middle Tripyramid- tiniest cairn, Mizpah, and then me and Jon’s his and hers La Sportive Nepal’s in snowshoes.
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Another view from Middle, the prominent peak on the left is Passaconaway and then next to that is Whiteface. All the way to the left in the distance is Mt. Chocurua

It was a hard hike, coming down off North Tripyramid I had to “buttslide” for a lot of it because it was too steep to actually walk down, you just slip and slide anyway. I could have put my crampons on my boots, but honestly crampons are scary and if you think you are going to misstep, they really shouldn’t be worn. You can slice your leg or your hiking companions by mistake with a crampon. My crampons are for climbing up sheets of ice only.

Mizpah came along yesterday, but chances are this will be her last long hike until the weather warms up again. She loves hiking, loves the journey, but girlfran just isn’t equipped for the weather up there. Her paws get cold and no matter what we try- different salves/waxes, many brands of booties- we just can’t find her any relief besides just sitting the hike out. Her little Ruffwear jacket keeps her body warm, but those paws….

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Finishing the hike just before dark

So I am now down to single digits. Just 9 mountains left to struggle up 🙂 Then I will probably want to do them all in the winter…..or do the additional 4000 footers in Maine & Vermont…or just hike with my lovely fiancé Jon as he works toward the grid (all 48 in all 12 months). I hope you all had a great weekend, I will takin it easy today, nursing some sore muscles. I am thinking it might be time to do a winter hiking gear post…there’s a lot….if you like buying gear, def get into winter hiking ha!

IMG_2870 Jacket / Pants / Buff, old but check these out / Gaitors / Boots / Snowshoes

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Happy Birthday to me & MLK Jr!!

This morning I turned 32!! Man, when I look at my past self in my 20s….the things that I thought I would have accomplished by 32….

I am currently finishing up my second Master’s degree, so education is in good shape.

I am still in great health, able to run, ride horses, hike, ski, swim….all my favorite outdoors activities.

In an interesting turn of life events, I am divorced and no children which is NOT where I thought I would be at 32.

BUT I am marrying my best friend and love of my life this spring and am now happy that I have waited to start a family.

All in all, I am doing great, and 32 is going to be a great year! Here’s my birthday outfit today 🙂

Sweater / Shirt / Jeans / Socks sold out in boot height, but check out these / Boots

When I first started school, this really cool thing happened around my birthday- a 3 day weekend!! I learned that this 3 day weekend came about because a man named Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15th as well. There has been years when my birthday actually fell on the Monday that we got off in observance of MLK Jr’s birthday which was really cool.

Martin Luther King Jr. would be 87 today. I wonder what he would think of some of the events that have occurred over the past few years. From the murder of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman to the murder of Michael Brown by police in Ferguson, MO….

I am not going to use this post as a soapbox to discuss racism in America today because frankly I just don’t feel educated enough to start spouting information but I will say I think racism is alive and well today. More than just the traditional feelings of superiority between races, there seems to be a distrust right now between people of different racial groups, maybe in some areas more than others.

Anyway, I am happy to be here celebrating another birthday, healthy and employed with great things coming up this year. I will ALWAYS be happy that I get to share my birthday with the great Martin Luther King Jr., a man that I think we can all strive to be more like. I will write more posts next week for sure about the birthday weekend! Have a great weekend everyone!!

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P.S. I hope you all like the new address/title for my blog and my new little signature!! 🙂

Eddie Bauer: The Brand’s Past, Present, and Future

My earliest memories of Eddie Bauer was seeing the Eddie Bauer logo on some cars. Eddie Bauer had an affiliation with Ford, and my neighbor had one of the Eddie Bauer Ford Explorers. There is an Eddie Bauer at the Burlington Mall near where I grew up so then I started to associate the brand with clothing, but more clothes my mom and aunt liked. At that time it was all about American Eagle haha.

I have a couple pieces from Eddie Bauer; a flannel shirt (blogged here), a fleece vest,  a cable knit cardigan, a waffle knit henley. I loved one of their quilted vests that I blogged about here. The clothing is definitely on the preppy side I guess? Reminds me of Land’s End a little. Imagine my surprise when I started following Eddie Bauer on Instagram….to realize that they are an outdoors/mountaineering/winter sports brand? Thinking back, the display window at the Eddie Bauer at Downtown Crossings in Boston does show a man mountain climbing…..but I still didn’t necessarily associate them with outdoor pursuits and outdoorsmen.

I am one of those outdoorsmen. I ski, cross country ski, and hike NH’s 4000 footers in the winter with snowshoes, mountaineering boots, and crampons. I camp and hike, my fiance is a flyfisherman. The brands that I think of when I consider gear are REI, Eastern Mountain Sports, LLBean, The North Face, Columbia, La Sportiva, Black Diamond, Arcteryx, and Mountain Hardwear….Eddie Bauer doesn’t come into my brain at all. Enter Eddie Bauer’s First Ascent. If you do some poking around on the Eddie Bauer website, you will find ‘First Ascent’, their line for snow and mountains and ‘Travex’, their line for hiking and camping…and they have fishing/hunting gear as well. Do a little research on Eddie Bauer and the history of the company and you will find that Eddie Bauer, the man who started this company in Seattle in 1920, started it as an outdoor outfitter company.

Eddie Bauer held the first patent in 1940 on the down jacket! They were hired by the US Army and got to have their logo on outdoor clothing for the US Army. Eddie Bauer organized and sponsored numerous awesome expeditions!! First American ascent of Everest by Jim Whittaker,  first ascent of Gasherbrum I, first ascent Dhaulagari, first ascent of Great Trango Tower, and others…..history making expeditions where everyone was wearing parkas and gear from Eddie Bauer.

Here is a gorgeous vintage Eddie Bauer sweater that I scooped up in my travels:

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Love the ducks and how the layers of the yoke design represent the parts of the landscape like the grass, then water, then woods, and finally purple mountains 🙂

Eddie Bauer retired in 1968, and sold the company to Spiegel, Inc. Spiegel, Inc. declared bankruptcy in 2003, Eddie Bauer became Eddie Bauer Holdings which then declared banruptcy itself in 2009. Then there were rumors that Jos. A. Bank would buy Eddie Bauer in 2014, but now Men’s Wearhouse is buying Jos. A. Bank and will not buy Eddie Bauer…..craziness.

So where does this leave Eddie Bauer. Eddie Bauer’s social media advertises it as an outdoor outfitter company, showing sponsored skiers and climbers….but if you go to the Eddie Bauer website, it looks like a lifestyle clothing company and you have to hunt a little to find this outdoorsy stuff. I have never seen any bloggers wearing Eddie Bauer really, no sponsorships or collaborations. That’s fine by me, but typically big companies marketing toward the high school/college kids have some reach into the people with popular blogs/instagram accounts.

Eddie Bauer has awesome history, and somehow they have held on throughout the years, but they don’t seem strong enough as a lifestyle clothing company to compete with J Crew, Brooks Brothers, Ralph Lauren, etc. nor do they seem strong enough to compete with the outdoor gear companies like Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shop, and REI. As we enter 2016, I wonder where this company will go. Anyone out there from the west coast? Is Eddie Bauer the LLBean of the northwest? If you were running the marketing dept, where would you take this company? For me, I would think about a direction: go hard with the outdoor gear or go hard with the lifestyle/clothing….how do Orvis and LLBean do it? Is is their reputation for customer service and their marketing that keep them going with the clothing AND gear? Orvis has Land Rover and Barbour….LLBean has the iconic sweaters and boots….what does Eddie Bauer have?

Musings here free of charge, chime in, I would love to hear what others think about this brand.

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Great plans for Elvis’s once abandoned Circle G Ranch

In the spring of 2009, I went on a pretty epic road trip from LA where my friend was studying for a semester back to Boston. We stopped in Las Vegas, Amarillo TX, stopped to see a friend at NATO flight school in OK, went to Memphis to see Beale St and Graceland, and then a very unremarkable night in Roanoke VA.

I never considered myself to be a big Elvis fan, but my parents are, and going to Graceland, you just can’t help but feel connected to him and his story. He was so talented, so trusting and giving, lonely in his fame, depressed, practically bankrupt when he died. Graceland is actually very underwhelming by today’s standards for celebrity homes. The pool was almost small? One passion that I share with Elvis was his love for horses. There will always be horses at Graceland. I will write about them sometime, they are lovely. His birthday was January 8th, he would have been 81, what sort of man would he be now I wonder?

While many people know about Graceland, not many know about Circle G Ranch. Circle G Ranch is 231 acres in Horn Lake, MS. Elvis and  Priscilla spent part of their honeymoon there in 1967, and many close to Elvis say this was where he spent his happiest times. There is a home on the property, and their friends had trailers that they kept on the property. They went trail riding, swimming, and had great bbqs. The property has passed hands a couple times; the ranch house was actually a floral shop for a time. The buildings have fallen into disarray and last year it seems a group capable of really bringing the property back to life finally purchased it.

Anyone like that show about life after people? Here are some pics of the beautiful Circle G Ranch before the renovation.

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The modest ranch house that Elvis and Priscilla shared
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The bridge over the lake on the property built by Elvis
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BBQ Pit, one side has an E, the other a P in the bricks
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Old stables fallen into disrepair, broken down truck included
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View of the storage and 55 foot tall cross
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The swimming pool, probably my favorite photo subject
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The diving boards at the pool where I’m sure much fun was had
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Elvis at Circle G Ranch on his beloved Rising Sun

Walking through this property must be like walking back through time. Like Elvis and Priscilla were going to come into view any minute on their horses, ready for a dip in the pool and some burgers. I can’t wait to see how the renovations go. Here’s the proposed map of features.

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They plan to bring horses back to property for therapeutic riding for disabled children. There will be seating, a stage, and a water feature in the lake. They will hold shows for the community, focusing on veterans and their families. They want the land to be a tribute to what it used to be by renovating the bridge, the cross, and ranch house. At the same time, the new features will help populations that Elvis cared about: children, veterans, and the disabled. More information about the plans for Circle G Ranch can be found here.

Want more info on Circle G Ranch? This guy, Phil Arnold has three awesome posts about it, lots of photos and anecdotes. I loved reading them.

Elvis’s Circle G Ranch-Part 1

Elvis’s Circle G Ranch-Part 2

Elvis’s Circle G Ranch- Part 3

Whether you are an Elvis fan, a horse enthusiast, or an equestrian, it’s easy to relate to a man, no matter who he is, and his love for trail riding…setting out into the quiet on your trusted horse and experiencing nature as you only can from horseback. He was an American cowboy, a veteran, and a rock n roll icon. While many would remember Elvis in their favorite movie, or on stage performing, I will choose to remember him riding. His horses never asked him for more than attention, a patch of grass, and water….how many people in his life could say that?

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The Old Bromfield School, Est. 1878

In 1878, Margaret Bromfield Blanchard founded the Bromfield School in Harvard, MA. The building was designed by Peabody and Stearns in the beautiful Queen Anne style.   In 1960, it was home to just 100 students. A new Bromfield School was built just next to it that had a gymnasium, and the high school moved out of the old school officially in 2003. In 2007, the building reopened as the Harvard Public Library.

The old Bromfield School is beautiful, and due to its proximity to the center of town and all of Harvard’s schools, it is a vibrant meeting place for people of all ages. They have a children’s room, a teen room, and silent rooms. Oh, and down the hill behind it, past the athletic fields is a beautiful pond, Bare Hill Pond. People row, paddle board, and even sail a bit out there. I will have to go back and snap some pics this summer.

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Above are two photos of the exterior front. Looks like the Mass version of Hogwarts right?? Off to the right and back there is an addition to expand the library. I was there around 3:30 and the library was full of adults,kids, and many students. Students in Harvard can walk just a short distance  to the library to do homework after school.

This is a reading room in the library, there were probably 3 rooms that not only housed books, but were silent spaces for studying, reading, and reflection. This reading room is a half circle, the same half circle you see from the outside in the front.

Here are some of the historic items set aside in a foyer of the library, a lovely grandfather clock, a portrait of Margaret Bromfield Blanchard, and the wooden sign declaring the purpose of this beautiful building.

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There is a room upstairs used for functions/concerts called Volunteers Hall. They did a Sound of Music singalong in December that I would have loved to go to if I hadn’t gotten a root canal that afternoon hahaha. I did end up getting a couple books- All Things Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot and Along the Infinite Sea by Beatriz Williams. I read All Creatures Great and Small by Herriot a few years back and just never continued, and I read Williams’s first 2 books which were both pretty good.

I love libraries. I love book sharing of course because its free, but the buildings themselves are often repurposed or given to the town and have rich histories. Harvard’s public library is an important part of the community, I can only hope that wherever Jon and me end up settling will have such a nice, supported library.

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My first Lilly post: The After Party Sale…

So since I started this blog in the fall, I haven’t really gotten to post anything about one my favorite ladies, Lilly Pulitzer. She was smart, stylish, loved color, and became synonymous with her amazing brand and the resort lifestyle. You can say she started with money, being a student at Miss Porter’s in Connecticut with Jackie O….and then went straight to more money marrying Herbert Pulitzer, but no matter what you wanna say, she built an incredible company.

She passed away in 2013 and honestly, as time passes, I like less and less of the patterns. I think part of the problem for me is there’s a LOT of neon now, and very mod patterns. My red hair, as much as I love it, makes me stand out, so I have always kept my wardrobe a little muted, lots of navy and earth tones. Most of the prints I have liked from Lilly had a sort of New England feel to them. Also, I hate the hashtag “buy me lilly”. It sounds so spoiled and greedy, not at all the way I picture the ideal Lilly girl.

I got onto the website around 8:30 AM yesterday and there were over 40k users in front of me…by the time I got on, a lot of stuff was already sold out!! I did get one thing 🙂 A white shift that I am thinking would be lovely for the rehearsal & rehearsal dinner the night before my wedding. I think it retailed for $278, and it was $74 for the after party sale. It’s called the Delia shift. I had been hunting for a LWD (little white dress) and I think this fits the bill. shopping

Some of my favorite prints from the past include:

Clockwise from the top: You Gotta Regatta, Lobstah Roll, Get Nauti, Seafood Salad, & Watch Out.

You can see a theme right? Lighthouses, seafood, sailboats…..You gotta regatta and get nauti are total holy grail prints, anything in these prints is usually really marked up on Ebay. I still look from time to time. Always got my eye out for a deal 😉

I hope these patterns have given you all a little excuse for some summer day dreamin!!!

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