Thursday, December 31, 2009

Christmas in Douglas, 2009

Susie and I spent Christmas Day with her family as they gathered at Dick and Dorothy's home in Douglas, MA. The food was delicious, the hospitality warm and the conversation lively. But hey, the photographs speak for themselves:

Cathy and Bernice:

Sister and brother - Bernice and Frank:

Mieke -- jetting in from Brooklyn:

And of course it wouldn't have been a Christmas gathering for a group of Vandenbergs without one round of the Bernice game -- Bernice, Mary and Dorothy:

Uncle Frank:


A day of smiles indeed:

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Remembering Scarborough Beach

After one major snowstorm followed by day-after-day of bitterly, brutally cold temperatures, a sneak back at warmer times along the ocean seems most appropriate.

Monday, December 21, 2009

December in Providence and Spring in Paris

As some of you know from personal experience, the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and various other parts of the eastern US got hit by a fairly dramatic snowstorm this past weekend. In some ways it was convenient timing -- it began early Sunday morning when most folks were safely tucked in their beds. We were at any rate.

By the time all was said and done we had more than a foot piled on our condo parking lot with two feet in drifts. And the temperatures were brutal -- more like a deep hollow in Vermont in February.

But today the sun is out, Susie is off tidying up a few things at Gracie's, like this delicious chocolate ganache with cocoa mascarpone cream:

Our one piece of big news is that we will be returning to Paris in the spring, something that is fast developing into a tradition it seems. Anyway, Susie has her tickets -- she's going from mid-March until mid-May and I plan to join her for the last three or four weeks.

My hope is for Susie to decompress, unwind, study French and spend quality time walking the Seine.

And for me?

I have two objectives: one is I hope spend a week in Italy, most of that in Siena and Rome if possible. It would be nice to get to Mouchan to see Richard and Pauline, to go to Strasbourg or anywhere in the Alsace for that matter, to return for a longer stay in Normandy . . . the list goes on. Certainly to spend a solid day in the Musee d'Orsay and a schedule-free trip to Pere Lachaise.

Oh, and in case you were curious, here's the roofline of the building I work in, formerly a warehouse converted into an indoor shopping mall on the Providence River, it now houses a variety of offices:

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Afternoon light in Providence

There are times, usually early in the morning or late in the afternoon, when the light in Providence is extraordinarily beautiful. The early morning light resembles a light pink champagne; the afternoon light is an incredible cross between light orange and yellow. I'm no designer so my palette is rather weak here; but it is gorgeous.

Anyway, I took these images from the 3rd floor of our office building in Davol Square, overlooking the point where the Providence River readies itself to move up in the world and become a full-fledged bay -- the Narragansett Bay in fact. Not that the Narragansetts called it that, of course.

This is the old Narragansett Electric building -- and another abandoned city project:

Finally, the Point Street Bridge -- with just a hint of Photoshop: