A Joyous Holiday Season
Posted on December 23, 2014
By: Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb.com
With the arrival of Ole’ St. Nick mere hours away, I have been reflecting on what a joyous holiday season this has been.
It began with the Manchester Road Race where I bumped into a good friend followed later that afternoon with Thanksgiving dinner hosted by Mike & Melane (held at their daughter Maryann’s house – my niece.)
Maryann and Melane had put together four tables in the dining room to seat all of us. Melane and the two girls, Maryann and Michelle, then spent days preparing for the holiday company, some of whom drove down from New Hampshire. It was a lovely day.
Soon enough it was time for the Gingerbread House Exhibit at Wood Memorial Library in South Windsor. I attended this exhibit for the first time last year and was so impressed by it that I went back this season.The next weekend came a holiday tour for my sisters and me of the Historic District in Manchester, Connecticut, with stops at the Cheney Homestead, the Old Manchester Museum and the Manchester History Center. We were greeted warmly at each place by the staff there.
On a snowy morning I drove out to Windham, Connecticut to photograph the “Frogs in Scarves” on the “Frog Bridge “. A whimsical sign of the approach of Christmas and one I decided was worth writing about for newsandviewsjb. It was a popular post, especially on Twitter.
Gillette Castle in East Haddam marked the 100th anniversary of the 1914 start of construction for the mansion, also with a holiday tour. Victorian Era decorations were everywhere to be seen at this unique Connecticut destination. Later, I came upon a picture taken many moons ago of my mother, my nephew Mike and me during a visit to Gillette Castle. We were seated just outside the sun room, a spot I photographed for the Gillette Castle story I wrote this month.
My sisters and I then made our annual trek out to the cemeteries where we left holiday sprays made by Candy for our parents, and other family.
On Friday, December 19, as part of the “Mom’s Recipe Box Family Series” here on newsandviewsjb, I posted my mother’s most treasured recipe, Hamburg Dressing, fulfilling my hope to publish it just before Christmas. That was made possible by all of those who particpated in this very special, seven-month project.
This past Sunday, the first day of winter, we were graced with a pretty snowfall. It made an ideal backdrop for a visit to Santa’s Workshop at Wickham Park. Here, I found a truly magical, hilltop log cabin which is transformed each December into a storybook-like Christmas adventure – complete with Santa, Mrs. Claus handing out hot chocolate and cookies, elves hard at work, a 15-foot Christmas Tree and an intriguing moosehead hung above a fireplace – and inside the hearth, a crackling fire.