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Hilltop Diary, January 16, 2020

Sometimes it feels like a vacation to return from vacation, if the vacation was more hectic than one’s normal life. That was the case leading up to this new year of 2020. I will be happy not to go anywhere near either an airport or a long highway ride for a while! I was not […]

Hilltop Diary, December 28, 2019

It has been a little over a month since my last post, due to the busy holiday season, but here’s all the news! It was one year ago that the body of much-loved ballerina of the St. Louis Ballet, Raffaella Stroik, was found in a rural lake 100 miles south of St. Louis.  Here is […]

Hilltop Diary, November 22, 2019

It has been over a week of mostly low-grade colds here at Hilltop, and we’re about ready for that to abate altogether, perhaps after a few more days. Crystal and I are thankful to have each other to alternately nurse each other from moment to moment, though she’s had to power through teaching school all […]

Hilltop Diary, November 7, 2019

Quite a crazy couple of weeks to report, but calm prevails here at Hilltop today.  (For late, arrivals, “Hilltop” is the name we gave our home, partially in honor of Beatrix Potter, whose home was “Hill Top” and we live at the top of a modest hill.) A great number of deer continue to populate […]

Hilltop Diary October 20, 2019

It has been two weeks since my last entry, having been just too busy to write last week. We took a trip eastward to Gatlinburg, TN for our friend Jennifer’s birthday party at a rented cabin in the beautiful fall mountains; then for a couple of days at the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina; then […]

Hilltop Diary, October 7, 2019

It has been a fun week at Hilltop.  Our two kitties got their new “marshmallow beds” – super plush, squishy beds, which cause them to sink in and “kneed the dough”.  I went to a nearby farm to pick up our big basket of organic produce that we subscribe to.  The owner happens to be […]

Hilltop Diary, September 29, 2019

On Friday morning we looked out of the back windows onto our field and saw a mysterious blob of snow-white fur, about the size of a large cat, ambling across the landscape very close to the ground. As it turned to a side view, a lovely skunk was revealed, but with an entire white back […]

Hilltop Diary, September 22, 2019

Like many places, Hilltop is still having a bit of late summer heat going into the first day of fall tomorrow; the flowers have to be watered twice a day to survive. Yet, leaves begin to fall and you can hear the tapping of acorns raining down and hitting the ground every minute or two […]

Hilltop Diary, September 15

This week Hilltop was quite buzzing, as usual. Crystal made Scottish shortbread and Cajun Gumbo by night, while teaching her full teaching load by day. We started seeing foxes this week around Hilltop, a rare sight here, and — speaking of buzzing — a pack of bees have taken over our bird bath for their […]

Hilltop Diary, September 8, 2019

This past week at Hilltop has seen Crystal and me both successfully through the dreaded flu, somehow functioning on Advil and Musinex.  Amidst the sniffles, coughs, and sneezes, I got up to the end of the “B” section (in an ABA’ form) in my symphony’s third movement, and beyond to the length of about six […]