Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Double Rainbow Connection

Why are there so many songs about rainbows
and what's on the other side?
Rainbows are visions, but only illusions,
and rainbows have nothing to hide.
So we've been told and some choose to believe it.
I know they're wrong, wait and see.

What a sight furnished by Mother Nature this afternoon!

After some heavy downpours, and some accompanying thunder and lightning, the skies just looked like they should be displaying a rainbow.

I spotted it in my rear view mirror, enticing me to take a better look, so I stopped.

This was not only a rainbow, but a double-gigantasaurus-Hawaii-tropical-sized rainbow. The purples were even showing up, and I never see the purples!
These pictures do not show how this gorgeous display lit up the skies, but I have stored up the beauty in my mental photodisc. What a treat!

I don't know what was on the other side of this particular rainbow, but a big smile was on my side.

Take a listen to an unusual collaboration of Kermit and Blondie's Deborah Harry singing the Rainbow Connection.

I am a Putnamania because Mother Nature's art, featured in the sky today, amazed me!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Fly High!

Everyone has something they can do well.

It may not always be the thing you want to do, nor the thing others want you to do, but be sure, there is something that YOU can do very well.

Will you work hard enough to find what it is that you do well?

Will you surround yourself with people that encourage you and help bring out your best?

Never give up until you find that special thing you do well, and then FLY HIGH!

I am a Putnamaniac because although I am not the brightest bulb in the pack, I never give up, and fly quite high when I get to do what I am good at, right here in Putnam!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness - make it a part of each and every day

Smile widely at someone looking glum.

Bend over and pick up something, if someone has dropped something.

Open a door, instead of hurrying to beat someone to it.

Give a sincere "Thank You" for someone just doing their job, especially those doing it well.

Offer to do something for your neighbor, when you know they just can't do themselves.

If you see someone in need, and you can help, then do it - help them.

Random acts of kindness, make them a part of your life, every day.

I am a Putnamaniac because I see random acts of kindness every single day. Peace and Love!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Big Rooster is out - pick a little, cheep a little all you hens!

My family had chickens.  We even named the chicken houses. Ever popular was the high rise "Heritage Hen House".

After a brief respite and years of no chicken on the family "farm", which is now holding steady at a manageable size for my mom of 1/2 acres, the chickens have returned.

This time the chicken house is not named, but the chickens are.
Rooster, man of the pen, is a black silkie named Howard Stern, for his good looks.
Aracauna hens are Lil' Kim, Danielle, Ally, and Brooke (and one that I can't remember...).
Poor Phyllis, the silkie is now up in chicken heaven, looking down on her family.
A tribute to "Mart-Mart", in the form of a lovely fake chicken I got a Michael's craft store, adorns the window in the shed. (Mart-Mart was originally named Big Martha Stewart, but "she" turned out to be a "he", and wouldn't leave the girls alone. Alas, he was given to another farm).

What would the Dawley-ville chickens think of this Big Rooster currently strutting his stuff in Putnam??

I think we would hear something like this classic song from The Music Man:
Pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little,
cheep cheep cheep, talk a lot, pick a little more
Pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little,
cheep cheep cheep, talk a lot, pick a little more
Pick a little, talk a little, pick a little, talk a little,
Cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep
Cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep
Cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep cheep
Pick a little, talk a little, cheep!

I am a Putnamaniac because the Big Rooster makes this hen pick a little, talk a little, cheep, cheep, cheep!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Variegated Foliage Nursery - unimaginable - you MUST visit!

Today's Northeast CT adventure led to the Variegated Foliage Nursery, located at 245  Westford Rd, under the trees in Eastford, CT. It is close by this Putnamaniac...just about 15 minutes or so away. 

Mom and some of her gardening friends from RI were making the trip up, so I tagged along.

There is no way to describe this unique nursery in words, even with an entire dictionary and thesaurus available, nor with simply must go there. I expected to come upon a hobbit happily digging in the soil, perhaps planting some mini hostas, before resting and enjoying a spot of afternoon tea.

If you are a gardener, looking for unusual plants, or just like to adventure away from home, unlike Bilbo Baggins, please visit the Variegated Foliage Nursery. Plus there is a huge sale going on now!

The owner, an 82+ year old gentleman, said he did not tire of answering endless questions, nor the hard work. He believes that if he did not have this wonderful wooded wonderland to keep him busy, he might just have nothing to do but watch tv and grow old.
Click here to view a slideshow of all the pictures I took today while at the Variegated Foliage Nursery. I will treasure them and all their greenness, especially in the middle of the upcoming winter!

I am a Putnamaniac because I live so close to the Variegated Foliage Nursery, and I will visit often!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Car Cruise Sunday!!!! Do Not Miss Out if you are a Classic Car Fan!

Sunday - downtown Putnam, and I mean all of downtown Putnam, will be filled with classic cars.

At least 2000 vintage vehicles are expected. I was STUNNED last year when I went down to check them out. It was white wall to white wall classic cars, lining the streets, parking lots, and even in Rotary Park.
On top of the classic cars galore, there are motorcycles & stunts, burn outs, vendors selling treats and drinks to keep you energized, and more!

Be sure to stop in at any of the restaurants downtown for a meal before you leave, and there are tons of unique shops to check out as well.

I am a Putnamaniac because I love the Annual Car Cruise! A must for car lovers!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Sawmill Pottery throws talent and fun!

In my promotion of Putnamania, I was out distributing some of my Putnamiac wristbands tonight after work.

It was my first time ever in Sawmill Pottery.The owner was sitting right there working on a piece when I walked in. She was making it look easy!

I can't wait to go back in there... with my purse!!!

Sawmill Pottery has a variety of unique items for sale, like buttons, jewelry, soaps, and the most beautiful pottery you have ever seen.

Sawmill Pottery also offers classes, workshops, parties!!! I am going to give one of the workshops a try this winter. What a cool thing to do in the cold winter months, when you feel a bit trapped inside. Creating and learning something new like this will fit the bill to distract my winter blues away!

Be sure to check out Sawmill Pottery when you are in Putnam. Pick up a great gift for someone special, that someone that may not be so easy to buy for, or sign up for a workshop. It'll be a great reason to return to Putnam as soon as possible!

I am a Putnamaniac because there are creatively fun local businesses like Sawmill Pottery!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Loop the loop that doesn't get me woozy!

On my regular "Fitness Quest", I go out for lots of jogs around town.

There are lots of loop the loops to take. Not the carnival loop the loops that get me woozy (and worse...), but different loops and paths around town. Today's 4.5 miles took me past, over and through:

*the Water Authority. preparing the water for my shower when I get home
*the High School, Middle School, and Elementary School, ready for another day full of encouraging young minds tomorrow
*a yummy smelling pizza place, which almost drew me in with its magnetic force and images of a mushroom slice in my mind
*a couple of bubbly, duck filled rivers
*Rotary Park, where the Big Dog Art display is still going on, and little dogs were walking their owners
*Cargill Water Falls, spraying a fine mist over me
*WINY Radio, putting their jingle in my head "There's always something to do, always something to see..."
*a funeral home, thankfully not hosting a sad occasion tonight
*the Town Hall, with its steeple reaching high and proud
*the Town's Soccer, Football, and Baseball fields - all filled with tiny superstars!

Do you have awesome loop the loops like this in your town, where you can see so many things in just a short few miles?  Remember to take a few minutes each day to get out and enjoy your community!

I am a Putnamaniac because the loop the loops around town don't get me woozy like carnival rides do!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Downtown: small in size, LARGE IN FUN!

When you're alone and life is making you lonely
You can always go - downtown
The popular belief is that this song, "Downtown", was performed by Petula Clark, about New York City - aka "The Big Apple". 

The lights are much brighter there
You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares
So go downtown, things'll be great when you're
Downtown - no finer place, for sure
Downtown - everything's waiting for you
This false rumor has been perpetrated over the years. However, the truth is now out. This great song was really written about Putnam, CT - aka "Putnamania". 

Think about it... downtown Putnam is most certainly a gathering place for the town's folk of Putnam, and for guests from other points as well. 
Social activities and events, walking paths for exercise, the beauty of nature, dining, theater, shopping and more are abundant. 

So maybe I'll see you there
We can forget all our troubles, forget all our cares
So go downtown, things'll be great when you're
Downtown - don't wait a minute for
Downtown - everything's waiting for you
I am a Putnamaniac because we have a great downtown full of big fun!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fall Color in Putnamania!

Love it! Even with 4 eyes (2 of them bad), I can savor the autumnal fall palate of colors... so vivid!

...from one end of the condo to the other... the fall color is a tasty treat for my four eyes!

I am a Putnamaniac because I am loving the beautiful fall color on this glorious day!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Community Spirit

com·mu·ni·tyNoun/kəˈmyo͞onitē/A group of people living together in one place

spir·it/ˈspirit/Noun The nonphysical part of a person that is the seat of emotions and character; the soul.

 Community Spirit was running high in our neighborhood today, with our first ever Condo-wide yard sale. Gorgeous day! Crisp and fresh air!
In general, my neighbors are private folks, and that suits me fine. Probably why we all get along.
I am not a great "one-on-one, need to be with someone all the time" type of person. Casual acquaintances are so much more suitable and comfortable for me. That way of life has it downfalls and moments of loneliness, but, I gotta be me. 

Today's camaraderie and companionship were very enjoyable. It was nice to see everyone buzzing around their garage & driveway areas working the crowds, and we had crowds! When times were slow, we visited and talked with each other.

It was great to see all my neighbors and share smiles and pride in our community. Although it is said "Pride cometh before a fall", today both pride and spirit came on a beautiful fall day!
I hope you live in an equally great community!

I am a Putnamaniac because I shared great community spirit with my dear neighbors today!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Big, and I mean BIG Dogs in the Park!

There were BIG dogs in the park tonight when I jogged through - like 8 foot tall and made of steel.

No kidding!

Check them out!

 I am a Putnamaniac because it has literally gone to the dogs - BIG DOGS!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Don't you just...

Don't you just always see something at the right time - to put things in perspective?

My knee would not cooperate this afternoon to allow that nice jog I expected.
My brain said "Bend, Ms. Knee", and my Knee replied "No, and if you make me bend, I will send shooting pain to you, Ms. Brain".

And just as I was being frustrated by a global struggle going on in my 51 year old body - with the left lower appendages (specifically  left heel and left knee) attempting a coup of the current power in charge (my brain), I saw a sight to put me in my place.

As I drove home from the grocery store, I passed by a couple out for a walk. The woman was clearly handicapped, with one leg vastly shorter than the other. She had to hold the arm of her gentleman friend to walk. They were slowly going down the sidewalk, smiling, laughing, talking, and simply enjoying themselves.

Ms. Brain and Ms. Knee agreed to be thankful for each other and happily coexist within this old bod of mine.

I am a Putnamaniac who appreciates what she has and will not take it for granted!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hay Days

Yes, I mean hay days!

Tonight a pickup truck loaded with hay went past me on my peaceful jog to wind down the day.

It brought back a memory, like so many things do when you have some time to think. Jogging is great for thinking, planning, solving problems - you name it.

Today's memory was of the Dawley boys haying long ago.

We have a great family picture of my dad. with a long piece of hay hanging out of his mouth (instead of the usual Salem), and my brother sitting atop the piles of hay loaded into the back of a pickup truck. I thought sure that I had that picture in my possession... but alas as I looked through my albums, the picture is not physically with me.

Mentally that picture is always with me, and just as clear in my mind as the day it was taken. Whenever I see a pickup going by, loaded with hay, I will think of that Dawley family picture, and of my dad and my brother, Skee.

RIP always Dad and Skee.

I am a Putnamaniac because the hay days remind me of hay days of old!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

I'm a Flag Flyer

Year round, I am a flag flyer, and you can see that my neighbors are as well. As I took this video this morning, the church bells downtown were ringing. Small town living at its finest.

My flag flies because in spite of all the things that aren't perfect about being an American, because there is much to be thankful for.
*I've lived alone safely and peacefully most of my adult life, free to do as I please.
*I've had wonderful jobs with wonderful people, and made a very comfortable living for myself. (Not too shabby for a not so talented non-college graduate).
*I've owned 5 different homes - all by myself!
*I can go out on the streets in my town and jog along at my own happy pace without fear of anything (except an occasional snake in the road and thoughts of Big Foot in the tall corn).
*I can speak my mind to others. 
*This list goes on and on and on...

Tragedy strikes every one of us in life - no one is exempt. Fly your flag proudly and remember that it represents many great things.

I am a Putnamaniac because I choose to fly my flag freely and often here!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Meaning of Team Marissa

Originally when I heard about Team Marissa participating in the NK5K, I thought, sure, this is a great way to show support to a family that I have loved for many years.

Team Marissa was formed in honor of my friend's oldest child, Marissa Hayward, who passed away last year on 10-10-10.

Sounds like a pretty simple and basic idea, plus you get to visit with people you don't often see, spend some time with your Momma, get your jog in for the day, and get a new T-Shirt.

Win all the way around.

However, I have done a ton more thinking about Team Marissa recently. It means so much more to me than just supporting some folks that are so strong and good that you feel sunshine coming directly from them and into you whenever you see them, hug them, or even think of them.

I recalled sitting at the memorial for Marissa with my mother last year, and hearing all the stories of Marissa, a very energetic and individualistic, fun person. That led me to recall all the fun times I had with her mom and all of our high school friends years ago.

Team Marissa means that you should be happy to be who you are, live life to the fullest, expend your energy for good purposes. Be strong for yourself, and you will pass that strength on to others. And this is the hardest one for me: be sure to let the people that you love and value how much they mean to you. Time is fleeting, so make it count.

I'm pretty sure the over 100 members of Team Marissa, that are gathered in this picture, as well as those all over the country that joined the Team in their own areas of the USA, agree with me.
I am a Putnamaniac because I know the true meaning of Team Marissa!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Pink Princess Pace Bike, training wheels included!

Coming home later than usual from work, after a few errands, and not on my regular one mile route to and from employment, I saw the best thing ever!

A dad was jogging along with some effort. It appeared that this was something that he hadn't done in some time, and it was clearly as an effort.

His pace car was actually a bike -  his little daughter on a pink princess bike with training wheels, and streamers coming out of the ends of the hand bars. Of course her helmet was accessorized perfectly - a light shade of pink. It looked just about like this.

I have the feeling that this little pink princess pace biker was the reason that this dad was back out there and getting himself into shape. It is certain that he wants to be there and healthy for his little princess and all of her exciting events over the years!

I am a Putnamaniac because dads trying to get into shape are paced by their princesses on pink bikes...with streamers!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fresh new snootful of smells from an approaching season

Concord Grapes...

Take out meals cooking at Zoe's Pizza...

Family meals cooking in various kitchens in Putnamania...

Fresh, cool breezes blowing gently - no humidity to be found...

Leaves, wet and freshly fallen on the sidewalks and in the yards...

Take a big snootful! Isn't it great?? Get out and take a smell!

I am a Putnamaniac because I got a great snootful of smells from the approaching fall season while on my jog around town tonight!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fall Friday Fun at Fort Hill Farms!

Do you think that you are paying attention and know what it going on locally?

I try to always have all four eyes and both ears opened for whatever is going on around in the Quiet Corner. With all the various media outlets, there is no excuse not to know what is going on.

However, this little tidbit just caught my four eyes today:
Fort Hill Farms in Thompson is hosting "Folk on the Farm" every Friday evening in September from 7-9pm. These are free concerts! Holy Cow!

Looking at my calendar right now, I think I can make it for perhaps two of these fun events!I hope for even more!

Fort Hill Farms is a great place to visit, a piece of beauty to behold with all of our senses, right here on earth and so close to us. There are tons of things to see, smell, touch, and eat while you are there, too.

Topping off the fall fun experience at Fort Hill Farms, you must check out their corn maze. Superior to all others! Simply amazing!
Fort Hill Farms is a great place to go with your family, your friends, and even by yourself. All are welcome and all are guaranteed to enjoy every moment!

I am a Putnamaniac because I am looking forward to Fall Friday Fun at Fort Hill Farms!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Great local handmade products! Check out The Farmer's Plate!

Coming from a family that had goats, chickens, etc, etc, I was somehow not an animal fan.
Coming from a family that gardened forever, and having spent most of my early years in the garden & dirt with my Poppa Moone, I somehow am a huge garden fan. 

However, no matter what my opinions are on animals and gardening, there is no disputing that great products come from both, especially when they are used in tandem. And for once, I am not talking about food!

Check out this cool new business that just opened. The Farmer's Plate uses natural ingredients to make awesome products like lip balm, lotion, soaps....

I just ordered some goodies for my momma, and I know she will love them, especially with our goat and gardening history!

The Coconut Oil & Exfoliation bar will be perfect for her after a long day in the garden.
The Aloe & Goats Milk bar will be soothing all over.
The Lotion Bar sounds unique and looks beautiful. 

There's tons of other cool stuff, including food products, so check this out and order something for a loved one, or for yourself!

I am a Putnamaniac because there are so many local handmade natural products and people!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Amazing politeness never stops amazing me!

Although I know people in the Quiet Corner are very pleasant, friendly, thoughtful and polite, I am still sometimes surprised at how nice they are!

An older woman stopped at a stop sign, so I slowed down my already slow jog and simply went around behind her. As I passed by her window, she waved and said "So sorry I had to slow you down, but I had to stop at the stop sign."

How cute is that? She not only stopped at a stop sign, but then felt bad that I had to go around her. That is politeness to the max! Welcome to the Quiet Corner. That is how we roll!

I am a Putnamaniac because people are polite and thoughtful by nature!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Woodstock Fair - always on Labor Day weekend

Fair time is in full swing.

Great smells of food, fresh air, animals!

Great sights - entertainment, people watching, arts & crafts!

Great companionship as you are certain to run into people you haven't seen in forever at a fair!

This Labor Day weekend, as always, is the Woodstock Fair's time to shine. It started yesterday and will run through Monday. I am pretty lucky to live so close to the Woodstock Fairgrounds, which is just about 3 miles away from my cozy condo. I jog past there often, and admire the vast grounds, which look immense when they are empty. The next few days it will be filled to the brim and bustling!

Summertime is fair time, and by the time the Woodstock Fair comes around, it really signifies that summer is also winding down.

Visit the Woodstock Fair this weekend, and let me know what you enjoy the most. Maybe I'll see you there, but if not, stop by for a visit with this Putnamaniac!
I am a Putnamaniac because I live so close to the Woodstock Fair - always on Labor Day weekend!