Enter Ancient December

It’s finally cold outside. I need my winter coat. No snow yet, but the local shops are putting up their displays and the Town is getting ready for a holiday blow out this weekend: tree lightings, caroling, special promotions at shops and restaurants. White lights are draped over trees in Arlington Center and trees are on sale, ready for ornaments all all that.

Holiday Display
Ginger Bread House at The Artful Heart

We’ll probably pick out a tree this weekend, just in time to kick off Hanukkah! I’ll have to dig out my husband’s menorah and remind him to get candles so we can light the thing. My travel arrangements for Buffalo are set and I’m starting to look around for presents to purchase or make.

Okay, so this is feeling cool. I’m getting into it. It’s been a little hard to get into the spirit since my mom passed, but enough time has transpired so that I can feel that holiday joy in my heart.

Happy Holidays, everybody!

A Walk in the (Not Quite) Woods

I managed to get out of the house today, wonder of wonders and treated myself to a walk along a bike path that runs past our street. The path used to be a railroad line, so the terrain is nice and flat. There’s a very nice little park behind my street which looks out over spy pond. You couldn’t ask for a prettier scene. Trees, water, birdsong and peaceful nature. I’ll take it.

Sculptures at an Exhibition

Arlington has gone whole-hog on the outdoor art scene. We’ve got painted utility boxes, street festivals and art exhibits in public parks. I’m just up the street from one of those parks, Spy Pond, and visited an exhibit called “Art Rocks Spy Pond,” which is going until the end of May. It was a beautiful day, so I took my camera and came back with some lovely pics. Enjoy!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

B I G

Here I am again, catching up over the weekend! Way back when, we were asked to capture an image that represents size and point of view. In a word: BIG.

Getting outside to take pictures is an ongoing challenge, but I had errands to run yesterday and my head was pounding anyway. So, I turned off the computer and put on my coat. That check wasn’t going to deposit itself!

The Boston area is home to many home-grown versions of religion, including and especially Unitarianism and its sister, Universalism. It’s a pretty easy-going creed. The initial idea was that God wasn’t a trinity, but a singular unit. Take that, traditional Christianity! The First Parish Unitarian Church dates back to the 1600s in Arlington, then West Cambridge. Fast forward a few hundred years and you’ve got The First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church on the corner of Pleasant Street and Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington Center.

The original building constructed so long ago was lost in a fire at some point in the 1950s or early 1960s. I’m not up on my history when it comes to this building, or this denomination. I’m not the worshiping type. However, the church rebuilt in the early 1960s with what I consider to be a pretty ugly but rather striking construction. Minimalist, with some rather stark lines. The bell tower is unmistakable, though, and really, really big:

bell tower

The building as a whole doesn’t do much for me, but that tower is an Arlington, MA landmark. You can’t miss it!

A Pleasant Walk in a Pleasant Town

Every now and again we get a nice, spring day. Today? Well, lovely, in a word. It almost (but not entirely) made up for the days of wind, cold and rain we’ve recently had. I’m sick to death of gray skies where I don’t feel like taking one step out of the house. It’s downright depressing.

I had some time to make up for today. I’ve been missing my walks and decided to roam a bit further afield, to Menotomy Rocks park. It’s about a 20-25 minute walk from my house and nestled in a quiet neighborhood of very pretty, Victorian houses and well-tended gardens. There’s a lovely pond with a walking path around its perimeter. There are myriad other paths as well, that are about as peaceful and contemplative as you could want.

walking path
Come For the Peace, Stay For the Quiet.

I spent a blissful hour or so walking to and from the park, then walking around the pond. There’s also an outdoor art exhibit there, sponsored by the Town and open to any and all comers.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I haven’t been to Menotomy Rocks in a few years. I remember taking my parents to it at one point and walking around the pond with my mother. She loved to walk and, like me, enjoyed parks and gardens. My dad’s a more sedentary guy and took a seat on a bench while we ambled and talked.

I finally left when my bladder had a very urgent chat with me. Damn. That’s what happens when you get older. I did manage to snag a few pics of the neighborhood on the way down, so it wasn’t a total loss.

Pretty Nice!