Saturday, June 29, 2013

Leaving Vermont

Each time we leave a place we have lived, it is incredibly difficult.  In leaving I realize that it's possible that I may never be able to visit that place again.  In the days leading up to our departure I find myself trying to imprint the place on my brain so that I won't forget those things which I love about it -- and cramming in as many "last things" as I can...

Leaving Vermont was really tough -- Forest Echo is SUCH a special place for us.  It was the absolutely perfect place to recover from the noise and pollution of China and a true retreat.   Jason asked me what I thought I would miss the most about our home in Vermont and the first thought that popped into my head was the peace.  It is probably the most peaceful place I will ever live...I so hope that we will get to visit it again someday and show Luke the beautiful place he got to live for the first few months of his life.

In any place, it is the connections with people who make the place alive for me.  The people we met through Forest Echo, through our church and through our jobs at Okemo will always be part of our special Vermont memories.  We have been welcomed and loved by so many ... saying goodbye to them was heart wrenching.  I can only look forward to seeing who we cross paths with again.

Our last morning at Forest Echo Farm -- we love that we lived in a barn for nearly two years!

 One last afternoon on our little lake - Tiny Pond

We didn't have a formal goodbye at our sweet church which was nice in a way -- the sadness of goodbyes can be so emotionally draining ...

... but we did get to spend one last afternoon with our dear friends, Bud & Edie who are 92 and 89 years old and still maintain a lovely home on three acres.  They share the same names as my Mom's parents who I never got the opportunity to know and were perhaps immediately special to me because of that coincidence.  They shared their hearts with us and we will forever be grateful for that.

We visited them on our second to last day in our barn and I'm looking mighty fine in my cleaning garb :)

Two of our bosses from Okemo (Wendy & Juliet) who felt more like friends than bosses and were incredibly generous with us.

Val & Terry -- Okemo co-workers who blessed us with their friendship (Luke is the 2nd baby that Val has ever held -- she looks really good, doesn't she?)

I met Sue briefly in the fall through Okemo and we started talking a lot more when we realized we were both expecting.  As we got to know she and her husband, Dustin more, we found that we had many common interests and were left wishing we had gotten to hang out with them sooner.  Sue became a sort of Mentor Mom for me which was wonderful.  She was about 3 months ahead of my pregnancy and was a great resource for me about pregnancy and motherhood as I stumbled along figuring things out.  Sadly I forgot to get a picture of their beautiful daughter, Ada, but we managed to snap one of the four of us at least.

One final, final visit to Forest Echo to do a hand off with the long-time summer caretakers, John & Mary Di.  Kindred spirits who have not worked traditional jobs for 25 years :)

One of my "last things" -- a final maple creemee (soft serve ice cream flavored with real Vermont maple syrup!)

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Flower Pots @ Hopewell Rocks

It's funny how I can read about a place and have a picture in my mind of what it is like and then arrive and see that while the description was accurate, my imagination was not.  Bay of Fundy was sort of like this.  I don't think I realized just how BIG it was until we were actually travelling there.  I also thought that most of the bay looked like this place -- Hopewell Rocks.  This seems to be where most of the pictures of the bay are taken due to the cool rock formations, but I found out that it is just one small section of an enormous area.  The other thing is that I never imagined was that when the water came in, it would be so brown.

We had a great day of exploring -- it is very strange to walk on what will soon be the ocean's floor, knowing that when the water comes in, it will be far above the top of our heads.

These are the flower pots and I really never gained a clear understanding of why they were named such, but there are pretty cool.

Some before and after shots --

A kayaker explores the area --

Saturday, June 22, 2013

THE Bay of Fundy

Even though we stayed dry in our tent camping through a very rainy night at Acadia, all our camping gear was soaked and wouldn't be usable again until dried out.  This sort of threw a wrench in our plans since we'd intended to camp during our time in Canada with a hotel night here and there.  So, we decided tojust drive up to New Brunswick with the intent of just staying 2 - 3 nights in a hotel and essentially spending our week+ trip budget in 2-3 days instead, skipping Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia for this time.

With the highest tides in the world, Bay of Fundy has been on my list for a long time and it was really really cool to see it in person.

We found an adorable "chalet" to stay in just minutes outside of Fundy National Park and had a great time exploring the park ...

The quintessential Fundy picture -- boats on dry land one minute and floating in feet of water the next

SO many beautiful waterfalls!!!

AMAZING sticky buns at Kelly's Bakeshop!

Other pretty spots

Our little chalet  :)

View from our porch with the bay in the distance

Jason cooked a lobster for the first time -- he said it was delicious 

Treated to an unbelievable sunrise on our last morning