What looms ahead?

The view from the cabin is always lovely and especially after snow. The branches droop with snow and clouds hang low on the mountain.

It may be a sign of aging that I think of snow blowing before I consider skiing and playing in it. I cleared the cabin path then headed to the end of the driveway.

Not so bucolic. The road was plowed to the dirt, which is great, but I faced a three foot wall of snow and dirt. They don’t teach you how to gnaw through this in Snow Blowing 101.

But gnaw I did.

And now there’s a clear path and the possibility of driving out…to play? But this is already on my loom.

It’s a new year

The holidays were mixed. We spent a very quiet Christmas weekend. We never got around to getting a tree, I couldn’t see the point because no one would be sharing it with us and, in the end, it is always a mess of needles and water.

Instead I hung a red bow.

And lit my candle chimes.

Well, it turns out this wasn’t enough for Tim. So next year, we will have a tree.

New Year’s Eve was celebrated with family and a Buche de Noël, complete with merengue mushrooms. I finally joined the Great British Breaking Show craze and have upped my baking.

I also tried my hand at their staple dessert, macarons. I used the wrong sort of almonds, ground instead of flour, and cheated by filling them with Nutella, but they were a hit.

I received candle molds as a gift and had just enough saved beeswax to make two adorable candles. This reminded me to order bees for next spring since my hive flew the coop, so to speak.

Days are getting longer but I got to watch the sun set behind the hills at 4 pm yesterday.

We have already had a chance to play with the snow thrower a few times, have had countless fires, moved wood around to keep up, and slept in the cabin.

So it is winter.

Crafty

Happy to report I’m all better. My leg pain was a side effect from yet another statin. I stopped it and am fully recovered. Now I’ve moved on to an injectable med. We’ll see.

We’re swimming in the local pool three times a week and I’ve upped my game. Now I routinely swim a mile. I needed a bag to organize my swim stuff, so naturally I made one. This is the second iteration made from a bird seed sack. It holds everything I need, including my suit and goggles.

I was so happy when someone commented on how cute it was.

The loom has been warped with projects since I’ve been home. I’m working on my second set of towels.

I’m playing around with some of my quilts. I turned one into a baby sleep sack and a jacket.

My linocuts are getting more complex. I’m working on a 3 color version of a loon swimming. Here’s my drying rack.

And I’ve made a slew of hats and mittens as I am wont to do every year.

I finally had help stacking the wood for the winter. It’s the first year in a while Tim was not injured and he did most of the work.

We need it. We got two feet of snow and it’s not even winter yet!

Picture window

Last week we hiked 4 hours to look at fall colors in the mountains. Something is going on with my hip and it was less than fun for me.

The next day, I turned around, after taking out the compost, and saw this.

From my driveway. Much easier.

Yesterday, while preparing for my zoom french lesson, in my pajamas, in my house, this popped into view.

And in its native setting.

Why do I bother going outside at all?

Back in business

Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse was dark for a month after a lightning storm zapped its LED bulb. I met the Coast Guard electrician who told me the bulb was sent to Australia for repair! Yet on my one of my final days as a keeper, four men in blue coveralls arrived in an unmarked truck. Much less dramatic than other locations where they arrived by helicopter.

Bulb repair

And just like that, we had a light again.

It was comforting to see it from my bedroom window once again.

I was very busy my last week, seeing the sites and packing up the house. Tim and I had visited all but one of the bridges on Acadia’s carriage roads. I made a final trip and saw the last of the lot, the Cliffside Bridge.

As its name implies, it is built into the side of a cliff. I couldn’t be sure it even crossed a stream.

Cobblestone bridge is the first carriage road bridge built and the only one made with cobblestones, not granite. It sits just outside the Park and is my personal favorite. I liked it so much, I crossed it on three occasions.

The second time was with Tim when we came upon this whimsical tree carving.

Complete with stick figures and a porcupine or beaver.

Then I cleaned house, packed up the dishes and linens for the NPS and gathered my pantry, projects and clothes and headed home.

I loved living on the sea’s edge with waves crashing beneath my windows but, ” There’s no place like home “. (Have I mentioned I played the good witch, Glenda, in fourth grade).

Sunsets and reflections

As summer comes to a close, the sun is setting further south and can finally be seen dipping below the horizon here. Sunset is a very busy time at Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse. Everyone hopes for that perfect photo. One night people abandoned their cars on the road so as not to miss it since the parking lot was full. If I sit in the living room, I can see people running down the hill to catch their photos.

Rather than join the crowd lately, I have enjoyed my own views.

This was a beauty.
Sunset and the 1961 bell reflected in the bell house window.

Sunset and bell reflection, and shadows on the bell house.

I march to my own drummer. This seems to be especially true when I swim. My watch tracks my path when we swim in Echo lake.

Apparently I swim in circles.
I spun a lot of wool while talking to visitors outside the lighthouse. I’ll have plenty of lovely yarn to work with for months to come.

It’s almost a wrap and I am enjoying the beauty of these last few days.

Busman’s holiday

I took a break from Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse and went to visit Monhegan Island and its lighthouse. I have wanted to visit for years because we can often see it from Seguin Island and I romanticize about living there.

It is located 12 miles offshore and boasted a population of 64! in the 2020 census. on the way we passed Marshall Point Lighthouse.

I only had time for a day trip on the mail boat but it was well worth it. I visited the lighthouse, a few galleries and walked along the dramatic, southern cliffs.

The lighthouse museum devoted quite a bit of space to the women who lived there, which is often omitted from the histories. Maybe because it is HIStory! There were various kitchen implements, a spinning wheel and a couple of treadle sewing machines.

Fog settled in for my drive back to Acadia the next day and nearly obscured the Penobscot Narrows Bridge, a cable stay bridge. I know of two people who are afraid to drive over it. Maybe it would be less frightening if they couldn’t see it.

I sprinkled chili powder on my dahlias before I left and every night since. I’m not sure what the pollinators think but it has kept the deer from chomping off the flowers.

Drop spinning is a productive activity while I talk to people at Bass Harbor. Here are some of the fruits of my labors. Just like lighthouse keepers of yore.

Although I slept through the northern lights display, sunset was beautiful from the porch last night. I slipped out among the visitors, and snapped a few photos. Everyone was so busy taking their own pictures they didn’t even see me.

Don’t scare a frog

I just went up to the garage to take out the garbage. On my way up, I felt a squirt of water and saw an animal – hop – away. At first I thought it was a mouse, because we have had our share of them, but the “hopping” should have given it away. Apparently frogs pee on you, or any predator, when they are afraid. Only one foot and its croc was wet, no odor but yuck. I’ve been slimed!

No such thing as paradise, here at the lighthouse.

Shetland shawl and a floater

I finished The Pam Shawl I started in June. It’s a beauty, not blocked yet but hanging in my window as a curtain for now. I used Jamieson and Smith shetland lace yarn.

We saw the coast guard drive by this window the other night with blue lights flashing. For two days, there had been a float caught on a lobster buoy. Tim spotted it initially and we confirmed it was a float with binoculars and my telephoto lens. Plus, multiple lobster boats drove by without pause. The other night at sunset, someone decided to call the coast guard to report a body in the water. She just needed a hug.