Nostalgic Cookie Sing-Along

Inspired by:

Lens-Artists Challenge #75: Nostalgic

…I look forward to seeing the nostalgic moments that are most special to you. Past holidays, times with family and friends, travel moments, or just something that reminds you  fondly of days gone by – it’s your call. Give us a small peek into the things you’re nostalgic about.

V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #76: Music

~~~

Get out the red and green sprinkles!
And the tiny chocolate chips!
Cookie sheets!
Cookie cutters!
Start the music!

It’s Time!

IMG_1598

When I was raising my children – and by the time each was around 2 years old – we made Christmas cookies together as a family. Simple cream cheese sugar cookies.

We used the same aluminum cookie cutters I used when I was a child.

Our tradition? I made the dough the day before so it was easier to roll out.
My daughter – and then my son – learned how to use a rolling pin and press a tree or bell shape into the flattened dough.

1992 t
Let the decorating begin…

Creativity was serious business.

The teenage years sparked unique decorating ideas such as the occasional anatomically correct gingerbread man. Ahem. All in good fun though…

Every year we were accompanied by the Sesame Street Christmas Sing-Along album pumping through the speakers (yes, we had speakers in the kitchen!)…and the clicking of the Canon camera.

My husband, I and the “kids” continued this annual family tradition for over 25 years…always accompanied by Big Bird, Cookie Monster (of course!) and the rest of the gang.

Cookies in the making. Oven warming. Four voices singing – the muppets’ lines memorized to perfection…

It’s that time of the year
When we all want to hear
A Christmas sing-along…

Or

Count, count, count — counting the days,
Count, count, count — counting the day…
I’m counting the days, ’til Christmas day is due…

(just a sample taste of this fabulous album – released in 1984 – just in time for our family).

A bit of nostalgia I never tire of revisiting…

1995 k t cookies
Cookies!
Decorated or about to frosted!

…both in pictures and in song.

Photo a Week: Signs

Nancy Merrill’s Photo a Week Challenge: Signs

IN A NEW POST CREATED FOR THIS CHALLENGE, SHARE A PHOTO (OR TWO OR THREE) THAT FEATURES SIGNS OF ANY KIND.

~~~

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Joan Baez and her band rocking it out in Newport – August 2, 2009


Surprise!
Happy Birthday!
We are going to the 50th Anniversary of the Newport Folk Festival!
Pete will be there! Arlo! Joan! Judy! Gillian! Guy!
…and a bunch of other people I haven’t heard of but you love them!!!

That was basically the presentation of my best-wife-ever birthday present to my folk singer husband, who is also a guitarist…a teacher…a songwriter.

He practically worships at the feet of – and knows the music and life stories of – many “old” & legendary folk singers. An opportunity to see some of his idols perform live…a once in a lifetime opportunity.

So off we went to the festival for both days – August 1 & 2, 2009 – located at picturesque Fort Adams State Park in Newport, Rhode Island.

I am happy to report he was in folk singer heaven the entire weekend. I enjoyed myself as well, but also included strolls around the park taking photos as part of my experience.

 

 

My highlights?
Watching Joan Baez and Judy Collins on stage…just as professional and enthusiastic and at ease as their younger counterparts. If not more so.

Perhaps their voices had changed over the years, but their music was still transportive. Entertaining. Beautiful.

It made me smile and sing along.
A very good sign.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Judy Collins at Newport August 2, 2009

 

Tuneful Tourism

Inspired by Frank at Dutch goes the Photo Challenge: Tourism

So share some of your favorite spots from among your travels and tell us a bit about why you enjoyed it!

~~~

I decided to take a break from posting photos from my favorite destination in California, and go with a tourist spot more local for this challenge. Perhaps others have the same experience in that we take for granted what is practically in our backyard.

Although I don’t live in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, it is within driving distance from my home. Despite the eclectic restaurants and shops lining the streets, I tend to avoid it because of the parking hassles. And seemingly supersonic growth of hotels and high end condos.

What happened to what was once a quaint little city?

Tourism.

Vacationers travel from all over the world to visit Portsmouth – especially in the summer.  And for good reason. It’s also the time of year when I may brave the crowds…and the parking challenges. To pull up my lawn chair at the Prescott Park Arts Festival. This festival began on a much smaller scale in 1974…and is still going strong. A beautiful spot of land right next to the harbor.

I keep an eye on the schedule when it comes out each June. If I’m lucky, I can sit under the stars and watch a favorite musician or two perform. Many attendees bring a picnic dinner. Since the stage is also used for the summer musical, you never know what decorative sets will serve as the backdrop for that evening’s concert.

Two memorable nights:

Remember Peter, Paul and Mary?
Peter Yarrow gave a magical performance one night in 2012 – charming everyone there when he invited children up on stage at the end of the concert.

Prescott park 2012

pete yarrow

 

One of my all time favorite Prescott Park concerts was in 2013.

Mary Chapin Carpenter and Marc Cohn shared the stage for another amazing night in the park.

prescott park 2013

Perhaps I’m a tourist after all.

Grateful for the opportunity right down the highway!

Clouds

 

I knew I was saving this photograph for a reason.

One day in June – that time in late Spring when you notice the landscape has totally changed from brown & white to color – I looked up. And paused from snapping photos of leaved out trees, budding flowers and soft no-longer-crunchy green grass. To catch this…

Waves of clouds.

Kind of like the ocean in the sky.

clouds

 

Clouds also brings to mind Joni Mitchell…and my favorite song from her album Clouds, which was released 50 years ago in 1969.

Both Sides, Now is that song…

 

Inspired by Citysonnet’s photo a day challenge. Prompt for today: Clouds

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Any Topic

Inspired by Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Any Topic

 

When we downsized in 2016 one of the many things eliminated was more than half of our record collection. Vinyl records…LPs and 45’s. We sold some to a local antique dealer. We sold some at a garage sale. We gave some away. Most we don’t miss. Some we do.

We saved two cabinets’ worth. No way was I parting with my collection of Carole King records or the “Three Bs” Barbra, Bonnie and Bette. Or classic Original Movie and Broadway Cast Recordings…Hello Dolly, West Side Story, Porgy and Bess, Saturday Night Fever…to name just a few. My tattered 4 record set 97 WWDJ/TOP HITS made the cut. My husband and I combined our Beatles collections via negotiating sentimental value of each. My beer stained copies of Meet the Beatles and The Beatles’ Second Album won out. My collections of The Carpenters, Herman’s Hermits and The Moody Blues did not.


Fortunately we still own our original turntable from the 1970s. My musician husband has maintained it meticulously over the years, along with the receiver and multiple wires and jacks and whatever. Including a cassette deck. And a CD player. No wireless mp3 system for us!

He also alphabetized all our music. The records are organized first by genre and then by last name or group. We have a zillion CDs alphabetized the same way. Phew.

One of the two record cabinets sits under the window in the living room area of our condo. Never mind that I flashback to dorm life.

A reminder of when rock was young…

LPs
Record Albums – Cabinet #1
(D. Ackles to B. Springsteen)

…and when we were young as well.

[We are also well aware that this collection will be the only thing our daughter and son will probably fight over when we are long gone. I doubt they’ll wish I had saved Close to You or Days of Future Passed….so I can rest easy]