Sunday, December 23, 2007

Snow, snow, snow

This car is parked in front of our apartment. Turns out there's been more snow this month than all of last season. The Massachusetts highway department has already spent its entire winter $24 million sand and salt budget.

Friday, December 21, 2007

You better watch out...

Jazz hands on the way - check out our dance moves. To understand why we're dancing, see weather conditions below (please note the "Feels Like" temp).

Current conditions for where we are:

Weather for where we'll be for the next week!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Fellows

This picture was taken early on. I'll let Keith name everyone.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Technical difficulties

Miles made a few signs to ensure the message was clear to everyone.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

You know the old "walked a mile to school in the snow" bit?

Guess what Miles and I did today? Actually I walked a mile in the snow to get him and then we walked a mile in the snow to get back home. We almost always walk home, there's just been much more snow lately!

BTW: Happy Birthday, Mom! Hope you got the flowers.

Hanukkah is over...

...but I just realized I forgot to post an action shot of the new menorah Karen gave us.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Q&A with Miles and Kari

Miles e-mailed my friend Kari, who works in Shanghai, the following question:
Hi Kari,

This is Miles. My friends at school said sticking up your pinky is a swear in China. Is that true? Thank you.

Sincerely, Miles

This was Kari's thoughtful response:
Hi Miles :)

That was a really good question. And in fact, I had to do a little digging to find out. Sticking your pinky up means you are referring to something that is "small". So most of my Chinese friends and co-workers have told me that it would depend on how you meant it to mean something bad or not. Does that make sense? I am sure you could think of some normal ways to use a pinky to indicate small and some mean ways ... probably the nice/normal ways are the best :)


Friday, December 7, 2007

Gnome for the holidays

I was shopping on Newbury Street in Boston and saw this sassy gnome staring out at me. He was in a shop full of gnomes, fairies and other mythical creatures.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Remembering the last drops of fall color on the Mohawk trail

Yikes, it's December, our second snow has arrived and I'm just getting around to posting about our Veteran's day travels. For the long weekend, we went on a mini-tour of the Western Mass/Berkshires. In summer or prime leaf-viewing season, this area would be packed. But, with the arrival of the chilly pre-snow air and with most, though not all, of the fall color gone, it's very quiet.

Day one - Hadley & Amherst: After a very late start, we drove to Hadley where we had short, but very enjoyable visit with Jill Kaufman, her husband Av, and their two girls. Jill is a friend of Keith's from public radio, turns out Av is also a public radio reporter. They live in a sweet old farmhouse in Hadley. Av has lived in New England most of his life and has an incredible wealth of information about this region housed in his head. They are such smart, funny, and warm people -- we'll have to head back for another visit. Hopefully we'll get to see their pond and the local snapping turtles that live there.

Day two - Roadside Stops and North Adams
- Shelburne Falls: Artist community sort of like Mount Vernon, but more authentic somehow. Glacial Potholes. Delicious warm Apple Puff, tea, and coffee at Shelburne Falls Coffee Roaster. If you go there, don't waste time with cold apple puff...get it warmed.

- Mohwak trail gift shop: When you travel with Miles gift shops are a part of the equation.

North Adams : Visit Mass MoCA. The museum is housed in an immense old factory with lots of wide open spaces perfect for displaying large scale artworks.

I was excited to find a Strandbeest by Theo Jansen. Keith and I had previously seen his work online where you can see it in motion. The pieces depend upon wind for mobility, so at MassMoCA it lies there like a mysterious and beautiful washed up alien life-form.

Also was really intrigued by the work of Heeseop Yoon. She creates very large installations using black tape, vellum, and pencil. I haven't found a photograph that captures the gesture and depth that she is able to create with these simple materials. It's sort of like she combines sumi, mural art, and fine sketching.

There was a large Spencer Finch exhibit, that, with a few wonderful exceptions didn't work for me. Much of the exhibit was focused on accuracy of color and color of light(he uses a colorimeter to ensure this) ...and being somewhat colorblind, it was lost on me.

We spent the night in lovely Porches Inn. Miles and Keith enjoyed many rounds of their "swedish treatment" (where they swim in the heated outdoor pool then dash through the cold mountain air for a dip in the hot tub and then pool....then hot tub). The town was so shuttered up that only two restaurants in town were open. Fortunately for us, one was the excellent Gramercy Bistro.

Day three: Visit Williamstown (home of lovely Williams college), drive through Bershires, visit to Hancock Shaker Village.