"The rain in spain stays mainly in the plains"

Well, in Vermont, it falls everywhere. But, I really shouldn't complain. We've been having the most beautiful weather. Blue skies, rising temperatures, melting snow. The house across the street from us has flowers starting to poke their heads above the ground. I was even able to break out some of my spring clothes to wear the past week. It's been wonderful.

Last weekend, I drove down to Boston to visit a friend who lives there. I have to admit that Boston is a pretty cool city. I would love to go back there if I ever get another opportunity to.
It was fairly rainy, so I didn't really get a chance to see the city, but it was nice to get to see my friend again and hang out for a while.

I guess you'd like to know the 'real' reason I went down to Boston though. Well, if you remember back a few months, I said that I was a pretty big fan of Julie Andrews... well, she has a new autobiography out (you really should check it out even if you aren't a fan. It's chalk full of history about London during the war and the ending embers of the Vaudeville days.) and has been traveling around doing book signings. I really didn't think that I was going to be able to make it to one because I didn't have the time or gumption to drive down to NYC again just to go to a signing. But Jen (my friend) called and told me that she had heard of a signing in Boston, and would I like to go to it. Hum, let me think.... yes?

Boston is only about 3 and a 1/2 hours from where I live (give or take a 1/2 hour depending on traffic), so it makes a lot more sense for me to go there... plus, i'd get to see Jen. So, I drive down, and we go to the bookstore and get in line (they were only allowing so many people to get tickets to get their book signed, we were one of the lucky 150). We stand there for quite a while cause we are at the back of the line, but we finally start making our way towards the signing table. At this point in time, we're going through the 'naughty' section of the bookstore, and let me tell ya, some of those book covers and titles were making me blush just the slightest bit.

As we are standing there, we start chatting with the line maintenance chicks and this gentleman walks up with his little girl. Now, they had been kinda running people off who had come only to stare and gawk, so the line chick looks at him and says, 'you're looking for a book right?' and kinda winks at him. Bless his heart, he caught onto what she was implying, but he wasn't very observant and picked up one of the racier novels and said, 'yeah, i was looking for this one.' I started giggling, and we struck up a conversation. As we were standing there, he asked me if I was going up to get my book signed, and if I would mind if his daughter went with me so that she could say hi to Julie as well. Like I'm going to tell a 7 year old little girl, 'no, you can't go see Julie Andrews." So, I said of course and told him he was more than welcome to go along as well.

Well, Jen goes first and I notice that she's laughing with one of the guys who stands beside Julie. So, afterward, I ask her what was so funny and she tells me that the guy had told her that she was acting awful happy, to which Jen replies, 'yeah, i ate today.' Then Julie just looks at her and says, 'Well, dear, I hope you eat everyday.'

It then is my turn, and the same dude takes my book and takes it to the table and I walk over with the little girl and her dad. I kinda nudge the little girl forward and prompt her to tell Julie her name to which they start up a little conversation. I couldn't tell you what they talked about, but it was the most precious thing. So, I'm sitting here beaming, and then I suddenly realize that Julie is looking right at me and saying something. I quickly bring my attention to listening and hear her say "Does mummy or daddy have anything to say?" The father and I look at each other and then proceed to stutter out an explanation that I'm not the mother and that we're just friends. To which Julie turns back to me with this "just friends my ass" look on her face and says, "oh, I see." She then signs my book, and we're off with me as red as a fire engine.


"Don't worry, I know almost exactly what I'm doing."

I have a whole new understanding of what people mean now when they talk about mud season. Mud season is the time when places that used to hold piles of snow now are home to large puddles. You can't even walk up the sidewalks of Burlington without having to ford a large stream or wade across ankle deep water.

Everything is brown now too, well... except for the pine trees cause they are forever green (hahaha, for-evergreen, hahaha... oh, you know you want to laugh). Native Vermonters promise me that the grass will eventually come back and be as green and as lush as it ever was, but I'm going to just have to take their word for it.

I have also learned something else. When you move, it takes you weeks to months to find everything again. I went out the other day and took photos of my new house thinking that I could post them on here... weellllll I will as soon as I find the cord that allows me to connect my camera to my computer.

In other news, I've been keeping pretty busy at work, I can't remember exactly where I left off, so I decided that I'd just start with last week and work backwards until I meet myself again. So, last week was a very busy week. See, Two weeks ago, I got a call from one of our mentors that the Harlem Globetrotters were coming to town and that she would like to take her mentee, but that the tickets were really too expensive. So, I thought to myself, self... there has to be some reduced rate tickets out there, so I started calling up people. I got a hold of the company who were selling the group tickets and talked to a lady who told me that she could sell me group tickets for $6 a ticket. That's like a *trying to do math in my head* that's a huge discount! Anyway, I got to take 21 of my mentoring pairs to the game last Tuesday night. We had an absolute blast! I had never gotten to see the Globetrotters, so that within itself was awesome; but the most awesome thing was seeing the matches having a good time, and watching the kids soak in the experience. They even got to go down after the game and get autographs from the players.

Then on Sunday night, we had our Volunteer recognition dinner. It was a frantic time at the office the week prior just trying to make sure that we had everything and that we weren't forgetting to do anything. I even made a slideshow of old and new pictures of our mentoring pairs to show at the dinner. We lucked upon a 5 star chef from the Vermont national country club, Chef Mark Timms, who donated his time as well as a majority of the food. Let me tell you, the food he cooked was amazing. We had a sushi bar, beef wellington, bacon wrapped scallops, and this cheesy veggie thing (don't know the proper name for it). It was wonderful getting to see all these mentors in the same place at once and get to hear their stories and talk to them about what they do. The Directior of CYFS (child, youth and family services; a division of the HowardCenter) was there that night and saw my slideshow. She liked it so well, that she wants me to present it to the rest of out division. So, next Tuesday, I get to go to the leadership council and present it to them and then we are going to decide how best to accomplish this. I'm a little nervous, I still don't really like being in the room while people view something I've created, but I'm also slightly excited. We'll see how it goes. Apparently there were people at the dinner who got a little teary as the watched the slideshow....

So, that's it in the life of Hannah right now. Just trying to keep up with work and get resettled into my new place.

Oh! And I was going to do this before I got so rudely disconnected from all of you, but we do a newsletter at Community Friends and it gets posted online. So, at the beginning of each month, usually within the first week, you can go here and download our latest newsletter. Our April one should be up tomorrow.


"It's okay. I wouldn't remember me either."

Hi guys!!!

Not that I expect anyone to still be around and reading this, but I just wanted to let you know that I'm back online and posting again. A lot has happened in the past two months or so, and I'll try to fill you in on the major happenings in the next few days, but this post is just to give a small, hopefully brief, explanation of why I, all of a sudden, went AWOL.

So, what's happened? Why have I been gone for so long you may ask... well, I'll tell ya :P A while back, 2 months ago I believe, we lost internet service at the house. I was told that there was a logical reason and that the problem would work itself out soon. Well soon turned into months. Meanwhile, one of my roommates, Valerie, her sister moved in with us making the count in the house 5. That's a lot of people in a house that size.

The tension had been building for a while in the house, and I was just trying to keep my head down and stay out of the line of fire, but that was difficult. Then one night, at 1 in the morning there was screaming, yelling, cursing and slamming of doors going on and I had to be up early the next morning. The battle royal had begun. So, when I could, I started looking for a new place to live. I would swing by the library on my way home from work, or go to a little cafe down on church street that offered free wireless internet. I don't even want to think about how much tea I've drank in the last two months... I think I probably own a good percentage of a tea leaf farm somewhere.

Anyway, to make a very (and I mean very) long story short, I've moved! I'm in my new house now just trying to get settled in. It's a great place, and so much more laid back and welcoming than the other place. There is a good feeling here, I don't feel like a guest anymore. It's in a very cozy neighborhood... right across from the air national guard. I can sit in my bedroom and watch F-16s (I think that is what they are) take off all evening. Luckily they don't fly after a certain time, either that or I'm a more sound sleeper than I thought I was. I'll get some pictures up of the new place tomorrow, but for now... I think I'm going to go cook some dinner, I think something with onions sounds right tasty.

Oh, but before I go... the new address is as follows:
9 Country Club Drive
South Burlington, VT 05403

Oh! and one more thing... we have a pool, and a hot tub! How cool is that!



So I am still without internet! I'm actually at a little cafe' here called uncommon grounds mooching their internet, so I can't really do a long post, but I wanted to let you all know I'm still alive and kicking. I have so much to tell everyone, so I hope I get internet back soon. Till then...


"Nobody leaves this place without singing the blues."

OK, I know it's been a while sense I've updated, but I'm having some internet issues... as in I don't have any. But, do not fear, I have found a temporary solution in a nifty little place called Radio Bean. It's a cute little coffee bar that has free wifi (though they do ask for a donation which I gladly give).

The unfortunate thing is that it is open mike night tonight. The last guy (who thankfully just ended his set) was a really bad imitation of Bob Dylan. Harmonica and everything. Thankfully the new guy is much better.

Well, I'm going to sign off, but just wanted to let ya know that I didn't drop off the coast of New England...


"Cold enough for ya? Brrrrrrr! "

Today I got to do one of the coolest things I've done sense I came to Vermont! I got to walk on Lake Champlain. No, really. I actually walked on Lake Champlain...

Of course it was frozen.

What, did you really think that I could walk on water? Sheesh. :P

Anyway, it was really cool. There is this place about 20 or so minutes outside Burlington where there is a strip of road that has water on both sides of it. Before you say it, no, it's not a bridge... it's a sandbar (man made I'm sure, but a sandbar nonetheless) This road eventually takes you to the islands of South Hero and Grand Isle. Cute little places that I need to explore more.

So, there's a couple of parking lots which allows people to park and walk down onto the ice to enjoy a variety of true "northern" activities. There were people out there with their little buckets and shanties ice fishing. There were also two guys who were doing something I think they called ice-kiting. This is where you go out on the frozen lake, strap on skis or snowboard, attach yourself to a large parachute looking kite and allow the wind to pull you across the ice. It looked like so much fun. I really wanted to try it, but I'm afraid that I would get going and not be able to stop until I ran into New York State (no, really... the state itself).

Kim and I may go back out there tomorrow. We would have stayed longer and explored more, but she had to get back so that she could go to work. But, rest assured, I took pictures... have a look:

The trees that you see line the road that splits Lake Champlain. We were standing on the New York side.

Facing towards New York, the frozen lake spans out in front of us.

An empty ice shanty sitting out on the lake. This one is on a sled so that it can be dragged out and placed where the owner would like it.

Above: a basket of fishing gear and two guys drilling holes for fishing.

Above: The small hole that the fishermen will use to fish through. Also, for those fishermen who want to fish multiple holes, this little contraption allows that. The line is attached to that loopy thing you see, which will jiggle once a fish bites.

A little ice fishing village.

This is Ice Kiting. Doesn't it look fun!!!


"Yes, shrubberies are my trade. I am a shrubber. My name is Roger the Shrubber. I arrange, design, and sell shrubberies."

So, I have undertaken a new task. I am endevoring to keep a houseplant alive. For those of you who know me, you know that this is a difficult task as I am generally known as the angel of death when it comes to plants. For pete's sake, I've even killed a cactus. Do you know the talent it takes to kill a cactus?!

This is a baby spider plant. And before you say it, yes... I do own something now that has the name 'spider' in it, but I try to ignore that fact. I got Sam (that's what I've named him) from the kids in the school located in our building. They, with the help of their teacher replanted the sprouts off the spider plant in their classroom and sold them to the Howard Center employees. I thought it would be cool to have one of these little guys so that, if I don't end up killing it, I can take a little piece of this place with me when I leave.
So, this is Sam, everyone say hi and pray for him...