Allison and I drove up to my sister Tara’s place in Walpole, NH last night. We first stopped for a nice meal with her grandparents in Fitchburgh, MA. Our ride up was a long one and it made it longer being that it was night, and even longer in that Eva would not go down for bed. But we managed and we made it and we were ready for a nice day of exploring. The weather didn’t think that we should do that outside however.
We awoke to the steady rain and gloomy weather of New England in the Fall. Despite the rain and a slight chill in the air we ventured out for the day. We went first to Cafe Loco at Harlow Farms in Westminster, VT. This is a great little cafe right inside a farm stand. Each time we go up to visit Tara’s house we go there for our breakfast, we’ve even hit it for lunch too. This morning’s breakfast was as delicious as always. I had a Michael Muffin (Eggs and bacon on an English Muffin) and so did Allison, we also got a blueberry muffin which we split with Eva. We talked a bit with Michael and told him that we were related to Tara and that we’ve been a few times before. We settled in for breakfast and I checked on my e-mail (I know I cheated, but I didn’t respond to anything so that is like taking a break) because they have free wi-fi there.
After breakfast we drove South to look for Sweet Maple Alpacas. We found the place but it wasn’t open yet and rather than wait around in front of the house we headed North and drove up to the Vermont Country Store.
If you have never been to the Vermont Country store you are in for a treat, this place has everything. Toys from ages past, clothing and a selection for delicious cheeses, dips and other items. You can find toys from your youth, that have been adjusted for inflation and then some, and also some good deals too. We poked around for about an hour and a half. Eva liked playing with all the little toys and she was even more excited about trying the different cheeses and dips. We sampled a ton of them and then decided upon a 4 year old extra-sharp cheddar. We had already picked up a fresh loaf of bread from Harlow farms, a sweet pepper and cheddar one. We would also pick up a bottle of Blind Moose Pinot Grigio to go with it as well. I selected a muffaletta spread to put on the bread also. We picked up a couple of the dry dip mixes and a couple of toys for Eva and we continued North.
We drove through a few towns on 103 and I think it was in the town of Chester we passed a small family run motel for sale. That gave way to discussions of chucking it all moving to Vermont and running a motel. Pipe dream but fun to talk about none-the-less. The area we drove through was pretty and would have been prettier had it not been so wet and rainy but we made do.
When we felt a rumbly in the tumbly we decided to stop at Curtis’ BBQ. Oh this was a such a delicious meal of ribs, chicken and a chopped pork wrap. We got a sampling of all the BBQ sauces (they were all delicious) and some cornbread (A bit dry and I didn’t see the butter pat till after I asked for one) coleslaw and corn. While we were there Eva played with many of the toys that were in a small area for kids. She even made friends with Curtis’ grandson. Eva loves playing and being creative. She found the giant chalkboard and began drawing Shamu on the chalk board wall. Sure it was a big squiggly line but she was talking excitedly about what she was making and her imagination was so cute to behold.
Curtis’ Tuff is a pretty interesting guy, he wasn’t there but there were articles all over the walls. He as a migrant apple picker who started from nothing and for 39 years he has had the BBQ business in Putney, VT. I want to visit that location next. Here is a wonderful photo montage and story from BBQ Pilgrim. Curtis’ daughter Sarah runs the Chester location, the one where we ate.
After that we were stuffed and it was rainy and dreary so we drove back to the house (after we picked up a bottle of wine and some milk for Eva) and we relaxed at the house. Allison worked on a scarf that she has been knitting and Eva played with her new Panda Bears (we got two plastic panda bears at the Vermont Country store a baby and a mommy). I tried to get Eva to nap but she was having no part of it. I started to read more of Heatwave (the Nikki Heat book based on the book that Richard Castle writes in the TV show Castle) and promptly fell asleep.
We had a nice wine and cheese and bread dinner which Eva liked very much (not the wine, she had her milk) and Eva fell asleep in Allison’s arms as Allison read to her. After last night and the trouble to get her to sleep we just laid her in bed and let her sleep. She slept 12 hours.
While Eva slept Allison and I watched a couple of episodes of Dollhouse and Gabriel Igleseas’ comedy DVD. Then we turned in early and got to sleep a little late on Sunday. It was a nice day staying unplugged (except for a quick morning check of the e-mail)
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