Monthly Archives: January 2015

Snow Day, sled day

Years ago when our kids were small, a snow day was a sled day on our hill, and several families would gather and spend the day and/or evening sledding.  On this day, I was comfy, all snug in my nook, just starting to read, a very good book.   When what to my wondering ears, did I hear?  The dog started barking, “some one’s sledding out here”.  I ran to window and to my surprise, my sister was waving, a grandchild by her side.  Come on down she said with a shout, so I pulled on my boots and in a few minutes was out.  (Sorry I didn’t mean to get carried away, work with me here, it started out innocently enough.)

Back in the day, when it was a lot easier getting down into a sled, not to mention, the twists and turns it takes to get up out of the sled, we were just one of the crowd with kids on the hill, going down two or three on a sled joining in on the fun.  Where are those kids now she asked?  We gave our answers to each other:  at work, basketball practice, college, ski liberty.  Yes,  those kids are grown and have bigger and better things to do, but for this afternoon, she and I had Ashley, and we had a great time sledding down our hill.



Not exactly like the zipline, dangling over trees in a forest, but good for a few minutes of that “I am free to be me” feeling.


I just have to express that feeling at times, and get out there and do something! If you think I am little crazy at this age, you should read my latest book “A Wish Called Wanda,” and see what I was up to when I was young!  And speaking of twists and turns, it is said that there are enough twists and turns in the book to keep your head spinning and your hands from putting the book down.   Find it on Amazon, with a title search.


Ashley was up for a thrill too, as she dug into the mess under the porch until she found “THE RAMP”!   She executed a perfect ramp slide and landed right side up, but once was enough for her as she said it hurt her back a little.  Smart girl, no use hurting it worse.



Linda was determined NOT to go over the ramp.  She thought she would follow the path to the right, But when the sled kept to the left, she abandoned ship and came to a screeching halt in the middle of the hill.


A walk with the dog in the field completes our afternoon in the snow.


A January sky beckens us to keep going and looking.

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Thank you God for seasons, trees, grandchildren, sisters, dogs, walks and snow.  So many good things all in one afternoon. A big thanks to Ashley and Linda for taking the pictures.



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Everything Pennsyvania at the state farm show

I went to the Pennsylvania State Farm show for the first time in a couple of decades.  We went with our kids when they were young.  I can bearly even remember going with them, however I did remember things from when I went as a kid.  Going to the farm show was one of our two, day long vacations we took as a family, the other was Hershey Park in the summer. The first thing I remember as we trekked through the food court upon our arrival was that I didn’t even know the show had a food court until I was an adult.  Mom always packed enough sandwiches and apples to feed an army of nine kids, the food court was off limits.   The other thing that struck me was how small the big arena is.  As a kid I thought it was huge and it was always so smoked filled that you could bearly see across to the other side. Thank goodness that has changed.  As we passed gate 10 on our way around the outside of the arena, I remember that was place to meet if any of us ever got lost, we were to always find our way to gate 10.

The vendors are crazy now, the arena hallway is jammed with everything from socks and hats to wooden spoons and farm tools.  The crowds are large, but manageable. I remember walking in the front door from the parking lot.  I will say they have the shuttle system down pat these days.  We did not have to wait long coming or going.


The smoke free arena and the beauty of prancing horses.  We were most impressed with the black ones that past right by us in a hallway.


We also visited horses in their stalls.  20150114_120207

Three heads are better than one, and the color varity is nice as well.


Our dog is a chicken chaser, so we understood the why’s of this sign well.





Those are some big chickens with brooms on their feet. I’m not even sure the dog would chase these guys.






And speaking of large, the cow on the left is not a small cow, that brown and white cow is a MEGA cow.


We were there on the sheep to shawl day, and we saw a lot of cold shorn sheep.

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The Baa, baa black sheep making sure he gets his hello in.





This is what you call a chick, slick sliding board.

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This little gal rode the bull for just over 6 seconds, the guy running it was getting way to close to losing $200.00, turned up the spin and away she flew.

We hit the food court right after taking a sit down break while watching and sampling a healtly cooking show. There we sampled some deep fried mushrooms, a milkshake and topped it off with a beef sandwich.


We had a long, full, fun day and stood in line for about 30 minutes waiting for the shuttle that took us to a stop just a short, cold walk to our car.     It really was everything Pennsylvania and before we left we were convinced that Pennsylvania has a lot to offer in the agricultural arena.

We were there on Wednesday and missed our neighbors winning in the beef competition.  Congratulations to Heartfelt farms.




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The First Ever Big, Bad Buzzard Drop

New Year celebrations take on many forms, but in times past all eyes were on the ball that dropped in New York Times Square.  Today the drop takes on many forms.  I heard about a few in South Central Pennsylvania this week.   The drop usually is something commonly known about the town, for instance, the candy kiss in Hershey or the pickle in Dillsburg. There is the strawberry in Harrisburg for the famed Strawberry Square shopping area, the white rose in York and the red rose in Lancaster.

To the outsider Mt Gretna may be known for its quaint cottages or its decorated porches, but to those who reside there know that there is a common nuisance that plagues the quiet beauty of this resort tucked away among tall, old trees.


We arrived just after 3:30 on New Year’s Eve, the same time the buzzards were coming in to roost. By 4:30 many of them had found their spot for the night.  In every tree.


We were introduced the likeness of the buzzard who was to be dropped by our hosts, Kay and Tom. They had prepared a specially made holiday perch, hung announcements about the town and made a festive sign for their porch.

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Dick and Tom prepare for the drop early in the evening.

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It’s said that the birds are drawn to roosting here because the roof tops from the concentrated area of houses provide a measure of warmth that is inviting to the buzzards.  They show up every November and over stay their welcome into March.  The droppings are just one reason the people in Mt Gretna would like to drop a buzzard, but they are a protected bird.


Inside the feasting is about to begin.


Just before midnight the crowd gathers.  In all we estimated about 50 people came out for this first.


Ten, nine, eight, seven



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This young girl was given the choice of seeing the Hershey Kiss, the Cornwall cannon ball or the buzzard drop.  We thought she was pretty special for choosing the buzzard.  Next year we will see a bigger and better buzzard drop.

Inside it was time for some bubbly and a toast.  No one in our group of four couples were real keen on the taste of Champagne, we had each asked for “just a little.”   Then I added some strawberries and drowned them sparkling grape juice.  It was a big hit.  I love my mixed drinks.  We had a happy and safe New Year’s Eve Celebration and are wishing each of you a good, healthy and prosperous New Year.


Love, Wanda

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