Monthly Archives: April 2013

Publication news and notes, and a sneak peek at the cover

DanJanelleSilhouettes copyFriends, we are almost in the home stretch! The proofs (which look fabulous) go to the printer this week, and that means we are on schedule with all cylinders firing. I should have exciting book release dates and event info for you very soon!

In the meantime, we’re making a Facebook push to get our followers up to 400. And we’ll sweeten the deal. If you help us hit that 400 number, we’ll post a picture of the book cover. What do you say? If you are already a FB member, thank you! If not, what are you waiting for? Just click the FB tab to the right of this post and you’re in. Join us on our adventure. The best is yet to come!

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Categories: Press and Promotion, Updates and Plans | 2 Comments

Arethusa Falls casts a springtime spell

Happy to be back in the Whites again and on the trail to the highest waterfall in New Hampshire.

Happy to be back in the Whites again and on the trail to the highest waterfall in New Hampshire.

Arethusa arose

From her couch of snows

In the Acroceraunian Mountains

From cloud and crag

With many a jag

With her rainbow locks

Streaming across the streams.

– Percy Bysshe Shelley

Janelle stops mid-stride, digs in her hiking poles and takes a long, deep breath. “Yeah, we are so out of shape!” But she’s grinning, so I laugh.

We are half way up the Arethusa Falls Trail and have to fight through a mix of earthy snow and mud on the way to New Hampshire’s highest waterfall. The spring run-off from the mountains around us pours down into the valley creating little inlets and tiny, rushing streams that empty into the trail. Spring is working hard to break winter’s hold.

It’s been a while since Janelle and I set foot back in the Whites, but after the Boston events of last week, we needed badly to feel the mountains under our feet. At this time of year, going up into 4,000-footer territory would be a daunting task full of rotting snow and dirty ice. So, Arethusa got the call.

The trail swings us south over two wooden bridges, then turns west up a ridge thick with hard-pack snow before reaching a set of erosion stairs that leads us down for a quarter-mile into the valley where the falls roars. Through the trees, we can seeing Arethusa’s rushing water, the giant silver cascade breaking down over the remaining ice into a deep pool below. Janelle quickens her pace and I struggle to keep up.

Arethusa Falls stands 176 feet tall, the highest int he state.

Arethusa Falls stands 176 feet tall.

We break out into a clearing, maybe 50 feet from the falls, and she just stops, breathing heavy, her neck craning upward toward the sky. It would be easy enough at that moment to talk over the rushing water, to fill her head with tales of White Mountain waterfalls and the story of Shelley’s Greek nymph Arethusa who is transformed into a fountain. But I keep quiet, and let whatever may be in her own imagination fill in the spaces around this wondrous sight.

Janelle stands there a long time, saying nothing. I begin to wonder if she’s afraid, or tired? Finally, I say, “Do you want to go down there, closer to the water?”

She doesn’t even acknowledge me, just starts to move, picking her way carefully over the wet, icy rocks. I follow and hold her hand as she crosses onto a snowy island in the middle of the Bemis Brook. She finds a fine rock, dead center of the brook, and sits facing the falls. I pull out some snacks, crouch down next to her and we eat lunch, the occasional spray from the falls drifting over toward us.

Half of the falls’ rock face is still coated in ice, and it simmers like hot diamonds in the sun. Spring melt roars over the top, 176 feet above. She finally says, “This falls is the tallest in New Hampshire?”

“Yup.”

She nods, and after a while more hikers show up, including a couple young kids, and whatever reverie Janelle is in is broken. We back away from our perch to let others explore and take pictures, but she’s not ready to leave yet. She finds another rock, flat and warm, facing away from the falls and we finish our lunch there.

It’s an odd day, calm and humbling there under the Arethusa. We speak of small things – homework, approaching summer, sibling rivalries. The epic questions of life and love are best saved for a breathtaking summit. Here in the wind of a waterfall, with the ice-encrusted snow still clinging to the underside of our rock, we whittle the afternoon away lost in the mundane, fearful perhaps of larger thoughts being washed away by the great water at our backs.

Nothing like a peanut butter bagel on a warm rock in the middle of a creek.

Nothing like a peanut butter bagel on a warm rock in the middle of a brook.

_________________________

Photo album: For our complete photo album of our hike to Arethusa Falls (and some smaller hikes the day before) link here: Arethusa Falls

If you go: We took the standard route, the Arethusa Falls Trail from Route 302 in the southern part of Crawford Notch. Trailhead and parking are on the west side of the road. Drive up the parking road to the tracks. The trailhead is just to the left of the house. The trail is moderate and gains about 900 feet of total elevation. At this time of year, the trail is also wet, muddy and still laced with rotting snow and some monorails.

Miles: Round trip is about 3 miles. (Caution: the Bemis Brook is very high right now and care should be taken on the rocks and snow islands around the falls.)

Categories: White Mountain Hikes | 4 Comments

Pic of the Day: Find time to be in the moment

Happy Birthday Aaron and Janelle!

Happy Birthday Aaron and Janelle!

Today is the twins’ birthdays. They are 11.

Coming after yesterday’s Boston heartbreak there’s a lot of inspirational quotes floating around this morning, little islands of well wishes to provide some rest in the middle of an ocean of sadness.

But it’s all stolen time we’re using in this life, friends, so today we won’t waste a second of it trying to make sense of yesterday. Instead, we’ll just eat some cake, maybe take a bike ride. Maybe we’ll find some frozen yogurt. The everyday is epic enough. Let’s do that for a while.

Take time to breath. Be at peace.

Categories: Pic of the Day | 6 Comments

Running for Girls Inc, one of our favorite organizations!

IMG_3226First, yes, that is what you think it is. We have t-shirts! But, they are only prototypes for the time being. We’re still tweaking the design. We’re thinking of doing the logo a little bigger and eliminating the white background. Stay tuned for more swag updates!

On Saturday, Buffalo and Tough Cookie were back in Concord to join about a hundred other, mostly enthusiastic girls, for the annual Girls Inc. 5k spring race. As you might recall, Girls Inc. took a liking to Janelle at our event in March and made her an honorary Girls Inc girl. Well, we had two goals for Saturday’s race, to beat our 5k time from the previous week and to meet up with all the new friends we made at Girls Inc.

And we did both! Janelle finished at 36:00, more than 90 seconds faster than our last race. That has led us to create two new goals for this year’s running.

We are going to train Janelle up to run a 10k. And we’re going to finish a 5k in under 30 minutes. We can do it!

Meantime, we’re looking forward to spring and hope to find some time to hike in between all the book events that it looks like we’ll be having. We’re not quite ready to announce a book drop date and much tour info yet, but soon. Very soon!

Hope you are all as excited about spring and warm weather as we are. Buffalo and Tough Cookie keep on rolling, and we can’t wait to see what’s around the corner!

Heading out

Heading out

Capt. Chaos works the finish line

Capt. Chaos works the finish line

Coming in hot!

Coming in hot!

Categories: Running and Races, Updates and Plans | Leave a comment

Pic of the day: Happy Kurt Vonnegut Day

Short Step and Tough Cookie atop Mt. Crawford.

Short Step and Tough Cookie atop Mt. Crawford.

Thought we’d begin the day with a remembrance of Kurt Vonnegut, who passed six years ago today. Meena pointed out recently that our culture commemorates the passing of politicians and soldiers, and perhaps we ought to remember the poets and writers as well. We couldn’t agree more. So, happy Kurt Vonnegut day everyone, do you have any favorite quotes?

Categories: Pic of the Day | Leave a comment

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