I picked up some very important materials for the kick-off of the next BLR project starting tomorrow:

Diane with Blue Lollipops

It made me very, very happy to know my small town “penny candy” store was still kickin’ it old school, same as 20 years ago:

Good ol' Willy's Variety

Candy wall at Willy's

I visited Willy’s in 2009 and wrote about it here. I was glad to see the wall of candy fully stocked this go around. I didn’t see the blue lollipops I needed, so asked the girl working there. (Same girl who’s worked there for at least 20 years.) Why do I love small towns? For that reason, and the fact that she happily answered my “Can you order me some?” with an “Absolutely! They’ll be here tomorrow by 3pm and don’t worry about paying for them until you pick them up!”

Small town country store experience: Check. Speedy service and better price on my blue razz pops that I have found anywhere else in the country: Check, check. Nostalgia and feel good times in Vermont: Check, check, check.

Thanks for helping me kick off my next project Willy’s. High-five’s and blue lollipops all around!


“my legs are numb!”

We dress in ridiculous clothes, do the robot and jump in snow piles that are almost up to the roof to entertain ourselves around these parts when the temperatures are frigid. There is no time to be cute, so I am looking super hot in Dad’s big boots:

Me doing the robot in Dad's boots

My sister likes jeans instead of snow pants:

Sister on a snow pile

I had to make some video:

It was pretty easy to convince her to jump back in the snow pile:

She was screeching that her legs were numb (it was her idea to jump in and take photos in the first place!) We laughed so hard we were crying. It’s too bad we are so boring and don’t know how to have fun.

No snow bank jumping this morning. It still says -15 on the thermometer outside at 9am. OUCH! I’m thinking Costa Rica or some other southern destination might be a good choice for next January…


vermont in the winter

Remember a few days ago when I posted those lovely green mountains and summer photos from Vermont? As promised, here’s the winter version! The Peacock mailbox looks a bit different eh?

The Peacock winter mailbox

Mom’s wheel barrel of flowers? No, you can’t see it. Do you spot that bump in the snow? Yep, it’s buried under there:

Where did Mom's flower whell barrel go?

Here’s the BLR Mobile covered in powder. This was on the first day I was here. There’s even more on it now. I am taking up a collection to see how tall it gets before I brush it off and start it up:

The BLR Mobile under some serious powder

I thought it’d be fun to go out in my pj shorts and sweatshirt with just Dad’s boots on to snap some photos:

The snow is almost high enough to go in my Dad's boots

That got cold real quick.

Since I took these photos, it has snowed more, more, and more. This morning my sister and I thought that was a great excuse to go outside again, act like complete jackasses, take more photos and shoot video. I don’t know when was the last time I laughed that hard.

Check back for more on the subject of snow in Vermont on this soon to be -17 degree night and what we do to entertain ourselves. I’ll post the jackass video this weekend.

Ahhh…family time.


vermont in the summer

The green mountains:

Mount Anthony and Bennington Monument

The good old country mailbox at the folks house:

Mailbox at Mom and Dad's

Mom’s flowers:

Mom's flowers

Vermont in the winter? None of the above. In fact, the weatherman is talking some crazy stuff about -11 overnight this Friday night. (Yes, that’s negative.) I sure do pick a good month out of the year to go home for a visit!

Stay tuned for “Vermont in the winter” photos and me frozen in a snowbank.

Where is your winter wonderland?


vermont gets voted over?! gasp!

Why oh why?

Check out my fellow wanderers, my soul peeps in love with adventure: Alex and Luke. I have written about them before. I just saw this note on their website. WHAT?! “poor Vermont just kept getting voted over time and time again…”

(Insert stake through the heart.)

This is a travesty. Come on my fellow Vermonters or whatever non-Vermonters out there who are lovers of the green mountains, delicious cheese, ice cream, fun country frolicking in fields of organic produce and progressive mindset and lifestyle (just to name a very few amazing things!) We need to send lotsa notes to Alex and Luke and rally them to Vermont or bust. It looks like they will be staying for 2 months in New Hampshire starting 1/2/11 so it will be easy for them to hop, skip and jump on over.

Dear Alex and Luke~

Look at me in Vermont in May. Don’t I look like I’m having fun and in gorgeous scenery? See what you have to look forward to?!

In Vermont on Lake Champlain

My fellow Vermonters and I would like to cordially invite you here to Blue Lollipop Road so we can fill you in on all the best places to see, eat, visit- you name it, in the great VEETEE. Lets be in touch eh? Any question you might have, myself and my crew o’ Green Mountain Gringos peeps have you covered. Never again will Vermont be voter over!

Here’s to your bomb-diggidy awesome start of 2011 at the Balsams and in our neighboring New Hampshire!




I took this photo a few weeks ago when I was at a roadside farm stand in California:

Fall scene in Napa, CA

This was that scene that got me missing those homemade Vermont Apple Barn hot cider doughnuts. I haven’t stopped thinking about them since. I do have to say there are few better places than the VeeTee during fall. All the foliage and those spots to get apple-infused treats? YUM. I’m so thankful I grew up as a country kid there. This is the first year in 32 I didn’t see New England foliage at all. Looks like I’ll have to make a date with The Apple Barn for next year. There’s no way I can go two years in a row without those doughnuts!

If you’re ever making your way through Massachusetts up to Vermont, stop at this place. You’re sure to leave stuffed and smiling.


i’m not on vacation. i live here.

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Did somebody say dream vacation?! I am IN! You all know I am a lover of road trips, so I naturally would plan a big ol’ road trip for my dream vaca. (Ok, so I haven’t been to Australia or New Zealand yet and I have been dreaming of feasting in Italy lately too…) I was joking with my little sister last week about taking her on the road and making the Diane and Erin Show. How fun would that be? I’ve recently updated the “bucket list” in my head from learning fluent Spanish and becoming a killer Salsa Dancer. I’ve added going x-country in/on:
1.) A convertible
2.) An RV
3.) A train

…and if you know me, you know I will make these trips happen. What do you want to make happen? I want to hear your story!

If I attempt to complete my mental bucket list I am in a good spot: My sister is trying to score a gig being an Au Pair in Spain so she will be able to teach me Spanish. My little bro is a Farmer and travels during the winter so I’m sure he could teach me some mad Salsa or other Spanish style sassy dances from all his South American adventures. I’d throw these two cuties in an RV or convertible and we’d hit the road Jack on June 1st one summer and just go go go until September 1. Full on top down, music blaring laughing and blowing through miles. We’d feast and explore. We’d go to National Parks and visit friends and talk to strangers. We’d take a million photos and videos and blog all of our stories. Oh how fun that would be. Here’s a photo of my two cutie-pie sibs that could be my partners in crime:

Brad and Erin at Vermonster Feast May 2010

Aren’t they adorable?

Get dreaming peeps! It could happen! I left the east coast with barely a dime in July and made it to Alaska safe, sound and jumping around like an idiot. If you dream it and enter it- it will come! Don’t forget to enter the “Do What You Love” Sweepstakes, for a chance to win your own ultimate family vacation. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity, as I do.


Um- Are You Kidding Me?

It’s April 27th and my sister just sent this photo to me this morning. Yes- that’s her car, in Vermont- as in, today.

Spring time snow-fest. Yuck.
I love you Vermont, but I am oh so glad I moved away years ago. I’m typing here now with my morning coffee looking at the sunshine with my apt. doors wide open.
Hang in there kid. Spring will have to spring for you soon enough. (I hope before I get there! Brrr!)

I Chose The Lager

…well, first anyway (see below) then I had some pilsner.

My Vinyl, the spring seasonal brew from the one and only Magic Hat was cold and delicious. I love this brewery and not just because I was born in the Green Mountain State. The Magic Hat peeps and all that come with the company it are totally un-average and perfectly quirky. (You should visit the actual brewery in South B-town, VT- it’s awesomely odd.)
Yummy beer, outside work meetings, a baseball game with lawn seats and good friends, my most favorite ever Cadbury mini eggs (sent via snail mail from my Grandparents who never forget) for a flawless yet half-melted and broken desert after my traditional Mexican food bunny day dinner and a near 90 degree few day stretch? Now that’s what I call the right way to begin an April. This girl is one happy spring chicken.