Snowmobile Vermont: Yet another great winter activity for your Okemo Valley vacation! 2013-01-06

“What winter activities can we do in Vermont other than just skiing?”  As innkeepers, we are often asked this question, and when we reply with a long list of ideas (sleigh rides, snow shoeing, cheese tours, and so on), we always recommend that our guests snowmobile Vermont.  And this is why…

What a blast!  Our family of four just got home from a 2-hour guided tour through Calvin Coolidge State Forest in Plymouth, Vermont.  Not far from Killington, and less than a half hour from Golden Stage Inn Bed and Breakfast, the tour company offers tours of varying lengths and cost.  Helmets and boots are included in the cost and I am happy to report that safety is only one feature of the helmet; it also provides incredible warmth!

The Woods go Snowmobiling in Vermont Wonderland!

After some brief instructions on how to use the snowmobile, we were led by a guide to snowmobile Vermont’s trails, up and down the rolling hills (mountains may be a better word), winding through the forests, and careening through the open meadows.  (Okay, so maybe some of us were a bit too conservative to actually careen, but my memory tends to exaggerate my speed and confidence!)  In the open area, we were offered some time to drive around, practicing our speed and turns, and just goof off a bit where the potential for damage was pretty minimal.  Overall, the entire tour filled nearly two hours and we covered about 25 miles of scenic Vermont trails.

The customer service at Snowmobile Vermont was fantastic from the initial phone reservation through the representatives in the shop and certainly including our tour guide. We absolutely recommend this snowmobile tour as a fantastic way to see the winter wonderland of Central Vermont.

 

 

First Day of Winter brings plenty of snow to our Vermont Bed and Breakfast (2012-12-21)

We’re Not in Kansas Anymore Toto!

 

Our gracious guests at our Vermont Inn this week were not spared the New England winter experience as the area received two separate snow accumulations (I hesitate to call them storms as they were so peaceful and non-threatening), one early in the week of about three inches and one overnight last night that seemed to drop somewhere between four and five inches of the white stuff.

 

Nelly’s view of Vermont Snow from our back door on the first day of winter

Although heavy and wet down here in the village with temperatures in the mid-30’s, in neighboring Ludlow, Okemo Ski Resort is boasting much softer, fluffier snow because of the higher elevations. Our dog Nelly is in heaven as she feels like she’s visiting a brand spanking new place each morning even though it’s only outside our regular back door…. that’s how different the area looks under a fresh new blanket of snow.

 

Despite the rain scheduled for later on today, snow is said to resume tomorrow, beginning overnight tonight when the temperatures become a bit colder. As a quick aside, Vermont schools in this area have been called off three times so far this school year (including this morning) because of snow. Our best guess is that this state requires a level of caution regarding school bus safety that we just did not experience in suburbia, USA. With the mountainous terrain and the number of secondary roads up here, far less chances are taken regarding decisions about school closing or remaining open seem to occur up here than we had been used to in the flatlands of Massachusetts…much to the girls chagrin.

Introducing the New Chickens (2012-12-7)

Welcome Little Chickens!

Did you know that if new chickens are to be added to a flock it should be done overnight?  If introduced during the day, they may fight ‘til their death.  But if merged while sleeping, the chickens will wake together peacefully, and accept one another as part of their group – as if they were together already.  (Such birdbrains!)

This is how we increased our flock recently at our Southern Vermont Bed and Breakfast.  After a summer of a declining chicken population (but an increasingly satisfied raccoon and fox population), we were down to four hens for our source of farm fresh eggs.  This is nothing short of a crisis for a country inn that is so committed to serving wholesome local foods at breakfast each morning!  And, as maybe you don’t know, it’s not real easy to find hens for sale in the fall.  If you don’t buy them as chicks in the spring, the options disappear quickly.  So when were alerted in October that a Massachusetts farm was selling pullets (that’s the hip word for ‘teenage hens’), our interest was piqued.  But it only got better from there.  My Mom and Dad (who still chuckle at my interest in backyard farm animals) went to the farm, bought us six pullets and delivered them to us at the bed and breakfast as birthday presents for me and Michael.  Thanks Mom and Dad!  We kept the six new pullets separate from the four mature hens for several weeks, until they were all similar in size.  Then late one night, we stealthily executed “Operation New Chickens” and placed the six young birds on the roosting bar next to the four hens.  Although some feathers were indeed ruffled, all ten birds shifted and wiggled just momentarily, and then drifted back to slumber.  The following days were relatively peaceful   …though it was interesting to watch the young hens earn their status as equals.  Expressions like ‘ruffling feathers’ and ‘hen pecking’ are fully explained in our backyard!  We now gather about eight eggs per day and we’re inviting you to Okemo Valley for a truly local breakfast.

“Mary’s Wedding” at Weston Playhouse (2012-08-13)

Play Review

Written by Samantha Wood

Recently, my dad  and I went to the Weston Playhouse to see Mary’s Wedding.  Mary’s Wedding was set in post World War I England. The whole drama was a dream that Mary had the night before her wedding. With a cast that consisted of only two actors, and with a total running time of 90 minutes, I thought that the play was going to feel extremely long, but every time I got that feeling, the actors did one more thing that amazed the audience, keeping me enthralled until the last line.

Mary’s Wedding was very enjoyable and I recommend the Weston Playhouse to anyone that enjoys the theater, whether you are a theater fanatic or just someone  looking for something fun to plan while on their vacation!

blueberry picking
Berry eating contest Winners!
Blueberry Picking in Vermont (2012-08-08)

Blueberry Picking in Vermont

Written by Sadie Wood

Last week, we went blueberry picking in Vermont. Our destination was Goulden Ridge Farm in Weathersfield, VT, just 30 minutes away from the inn. I went with Mom and some friends. The six of us arrived around 5pm and were greeted by a welcoming board with prices and bags and gallon jugs to hold the berries. The grounds were beautiful, signature Vermont hills in the background and a pond and a little brook marking the private property. There were so many berries on the bushes; you could see the clumps of bright blue from where we were standing, at the welcoming board. The sign asked anyone able-bodied enough to pick from any section but the closest section of berries, because those were marked off for seniors or handicapped people. We went to the section with what looked like the biggest and most abundant bushes to start. All of the bushes were enclosed in netting suspended to make a tent around sections of bushes. There were signs showing areas where the “Best Picking” was. The six of us had a berry eating contest on how many berries we could fit in our mouth. There was a tie at 60! We picked for almost two hours in that section until moving on to the slightly smaller bushes in the other. There we picked for about another half an hour until counting up the price of the berries and paying where we came in. When we got home, Mom and I weighed the berries we had picked and got 17 pounds! It was a great experience and we had so much fun. I would definitely recommend blueberry picking in Vermont for a fun time and delicious berries!

Editor’s (mother’s) comments:  I’ve done a lot of berry picking in my day, and I’ve never seen such bountiful bushes, nor such a scenic berry spot.  This is well-worth putting on the annual traditions calendar!   …and for what it’s worth, I came in second place with almost 50 berries!

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