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Birthdays and Dress-up

January 31, 2011

Yes, birthdays and dress-up. These things naturally go together!

This round of photos include the birthday cake Dakota made me for my birthday (yay kitty!) and the aftermath of the confetti contraption that Dakota made me!

Around the same time as my birthday there were also two really fun dress-up parties that we attended. First up was a rock-star party for another student’s birthday: Dakota and I went as John and Yoko… obviously.

The second party we went to was the 3rd annual Capricornucopia – a celebration for all of us Capricorns in the Upper Valley. I didn’t take any of these photos – they are purely stolen from others. The theme for the party was 1000 years in the past or 1000 years in the future… so, fur and metal essentially. The first photo is all the Capricorns, the rest are just collections of everyone.

January was a fun month!

Laura and Dakota xo



January 31, 2011

This was a few weeks ago when we walked through a field part way up the valley and found a little gully to go tobogganing in. We went with a bunch of first-year students the day before classes started – two of them have never been sledding before!

It was a lot of fun to bring out our hobo sleds (cardboard and plastic bags/bins mostly), and since the snow was so deep we had to pat down a trail for ourselves to start with. But we got in some good runs!

Merry Christmas NYC!

January 31, 2011

Hi All,

As you can tell, we here in WRJ have again fallen a bit behind in the posting, but tonight Ima upload so many photos. I’m not going to post a lot as far as explanation – I think the photos explain themselves for the most part. If you’re confused, just ask in the comments. It’s more fun that way anyway – kind of like a conversation.

First up is a gallery of photos from our Christmas trip to New York. Some are photos of the trip there (notably me posing with the town train station that has burned to the ground three times), but most are during our time there (including the blizzard that struck the day before we left, and Pee Wee Herman coming out to speak to the audience after his show). Again, if you have any questions, leave a comment.



Winter Wonders

December 23, 2010

It’s the night before we leave for New York City and only 3 days until Christmas, so I decided that we should probably post a few photos from the last month.  In particular, I wanted to document our bizarre/non-winter weather which has given us a few smatterings of snow but nothing substantial.

When the first snowfall came this was our reaction:

We were excited to be walking in the New England winterscape.  However, a few hours later it rained and everything washed away…. in fact, that has consistently been the pattern here.  Snow, rain, snow, warm weather making it all melt, snow, rain, repeat.  Right now as we speak, most of the ground is still brown or grey with only a few patches of white (really, it doesn’t look a lot different than the photos above).

But the lack of snow has not quelled our Christmas spirits.  Although we hadn’t originally planned on it, we got a lovely tree and some thrift store ornaments and had a lot of fun setting up and decorating our very first Christmas tree.

It’s an interesting experience decorating the tree with ornaments that have no personal significance (yet).  But after a few short weeks we already feel very endeared to our little straw and wooden ornaments – and a few will likely stick with us as a reminder of our time here.

As we head out to celebrate our classic New York City Christmas, we wish you all the most happy of holidays and all the best in the New Year!

-Laura and Dakota  xo

Afternoon hangouts

November 27, 2010

Somedays I have the afternoon off of work – it affords me time to catch up on my blog, run errands, and otherwise keep on top of life.  But one of the best things to do on a free afternoon is video chat with Jayden and Amos.

It is fantastic to see Amos – he grows so fast and it’s nice to see the changes (it’s great to catch up with Jayden too).

During our latest chat, Amos and I played peek-a-boo and I got him laughing by imitating Ernie from Sesame Street – his laughter is the greatest!

I love the future!

Home Before and Afters

November 27, 2010

In addition to working and blogging, I’ve been keeping busy around the house trying to get a few projects done.  So, I thought I would share a quick update and some before and after photos from our place.

1) Side table: We got this table from a former instructor at CCS shortly after we moved here – with a fresh coat of paint, it looks a little sharper.

2) Bathroom: I’ve striped the wallpaper off of the large vanity mirror, painted it white and also painted the strip around the room a darker charcoal colour.

3) Bedroom: It took awhile to sort out what to do with the blank space above the bed, but a frame from the thrift store across the street with some paint did the trick.  In the middle is a sweet banner that Meghan sent to us in Montreal (it also was present at our wedding).

** Photos from the living room will be posted once it is a little more sorted out.

Gory Daze

November 27, 2010

Halloween in WRJ really is an experience – Dakota and I concur that it may be the most fun Halloween we’ve ever had (at least as adults).  The celebration is called “Gory Daze” (as a follow-up to Glory Days in September).

While we had some great ideas for costumes, both of us were simply too busy to pull them off properly so we decided to go as skeletons.

Spooky right?

This also worked out well because both Dakota and I volunteered to be a part of the “Monster Petting Zoo” which involves wearing all black as well as a big monster mask and frolicking in a bunch of hay for children.  As we walked to start our shift as monsters for the evening, we came across a little boy dressed as spiderman (complete with fabric mask/bag over his head) who delighted in telling us that he knew what we were (in a very non-scared voice).  He then gave us candy – man, trick-or-treating is awesome!

Shortly after, we showed up at the Main Street Museum where all of the festivities were taking place.  The museum was open for people to browse their curious collections (creative taxidermy, random collections of human objects), they had fortune tellers, bouncy castles, and of course the petting zoo (staffed by CCS students).

Nice monsters!

In addition to the stash of masks created by a local resident, a fellow student at CCS created a fantastic vulture costume for the zoo – he has done lots of puppeteering and could really get the kids going.  It was very fun and a little awkward because it’s sometimes difficult to see through the eye holes of the mask, and I kept forgetting that they were three dimensional.  I’m sure the kids were wondering why one monster was stumbling around and bumping into the other monsters (just dancing, kids – not to worry).  Dakota did a great daily comic about the experience:

At about 8pm, everyone congregated in front of the museum for the parade through town.  This really was the highlight of the night.  Most everyone in town and area comes to be a part of the parade – some people come to be spectators, but most participate.  So picture about 400 people all decked out in their finest (creepy, funny, confusing) costumes parading through town led by “The Lil’ Orphans Brass Band”.  As monsters, our job was also to haul the “fire organ” in the parade – a contraption with lots of pipes welded together that you play with a big propane torch.

I tried to take some videos from the parade, but they didn’t turn out particularly well – but I did find this video from a few years ago about the parade and the town.  It is quite accurate to the experience, though there were no horses and it lasted quite a bit longer than the film states.  Just lay some New Orleans style brass tunes overtop and you have it!

The parade eventually led to the town’s new dance hall for a town party late into the night (The Curve Ball)!

More brass band jams at the Curve Ball

Overall the night was fantastic and a little bit surreal, just as Halloween should be – we can’t wait for next year!