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In the hot summer daze…

Temperatures have risen as Summer’s reaching it’s peak.  As a winter loving person… I don’t like it.  I much prefer to have the windows open – and the curtains blowing in the breeze… that’s not to be had in these stifling, August temps.   So… I seek the shady spots… with guitar, fiddle, mandolin… a strong fan… and just try and stay cool…

The muse to write and create – has been moving strongly within me – over this past month or so,  and  I’m writing with something more like an insatiable desire…  & I need to let this well run over…  and so far, two new songs have been born…  and though I’m very pleased with both of them…  I can still feel the muse stirring… and I know I’m not yet satiated.

I’m sure this rogue muse seeped into my soul,  somewhere in the mountains, or perhaps,  in the woods when I was gypsy camping… which is one of my greatest pleasures.   For  just being up in the mountains with my little camper – makes me so joyous…  ahh… or paddling on the bay waters with the kayak… listening to the tall grasses as they whisper and the osprey soar over my head,  or evenings at the lake, playing tunes… while the Loons – sing along… in the deepening shadows.

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Everything has been an inspiration lately.  I’ve been excessively blessed to have been able to do a lot of escaping this summer…  and I’ve stretched my wings & flown high, far & wide.   When I get home, I’m sooo  happy to BE home…. but I start planning my next adventure… as it’s feeding this insatiable, wild muse – within me…   and the thoughts and ideas that gallop through my mind… are colorful, beautiful and twisted – all at once…  and I can’t get them down onto paper – fast enough…

But in all this wild creation…  I can say I miss working with my friend, guitarist, John Wilson…  who moved away…  for he had that knack of being able to slide a melody into the right feeling, drawing the right sounds from his guitar;  but I soldier on.    I still have his old 355 Taylor guitar…  and I hope – that part of the muse that graced him – still lingers in the mahogany – of that old 355…  as I struggle to combine those wickedly modal, DADGAD chords…  which I don’t fully,  technically understand exactly what they are – but I can hear that they work & compliment each other… to pull tones, notes, chords & lyrics – into an artfully disheveled creation…  Oh it’s madness I tell you… sheer madness…  and I love it!    It stokes my flame!

So… long story short – “Shadow Of a Crow”  is finally sliding through the threshold of it’s finishing stages.  Jokingly I use to say it would be done Tuesday…. (which Tuesday, I don’t know)  but suddenly, I’m seeing an end in sight.   Had a LOT of serious “stop & go” events… crop up during this project… including a house fire, moving, a massive flood,   Hurricane Sandy,  and the list goes on…   But… NOW… whew… I CAN see the light at the end of this LONGGGG  tunnel… and I”m so very glad!   I think it’s gonna be an awesome cd…  as it’s got a great feel… and I love it…

Here’s a pic from sunset, on the lake… one of my fav’s… might put this inside the jacket on the new cd…  2 fiddles,  1 guitar, and Uilleann pipes….  only thing missing from this pic… is the marvelous sound of the loons…




Medford’s annual – Kirby’s Mill Apple Festival is here again!

The annual Apple Festival – at Medford’s historical Kirby’s Mill is HERE!

October 11, 2014… so mark your calendars!

Here’s the link with all the info:


We’ll be playing danceable Irish jigs & reels… and a variety of songs ranging from Stevie Nicks to old, traditional American & Irish favorites!

The festival is from 10 am  to 4 pm…  and we’ll be starting up the band – live music –  at 11 a.m.   This is a GREAT Fall,  family kinda event – brimming with wonderful activities, great food, vendors and music of course!

And it’s FREE!!!!!  Yup!  Free!  So bring the kids,  and have an old fashioned, fall day on the beautiful grounds of historic Kirby’s Mill.

Hope to see you there!




In these mid-winter days

Well,  even for a winter lover like me…  I can honestly say – there certainly seems to be many beautiful snowy mornings to wake up to this winter!   I still love the grey, heavy, snow filled sky… hovering overhead… and the bare branches – etched against the dim morning sky…

snowy mornings


And although it definitely dampens my beloved cycling  hours – & completely nixes my road bike big time… and daunts Mt biking a bit –  I still love Winter!  The colors, the sounds & how the crisp air smells like evergreens and holds my frosty breath in white puffs…   There’s nothing more beautiful than the subtly of all the tones of gray… and how the whites – seem tinged with shades of blue and purple…  and how intensely vibrant the winter birds are in their plumage…  I love to watch the birds… hungrily flock around the feeder each day.

So… of course… cycling – being out of the question – I must find ways to get outside… & discovered the quad comes into play quite nicely – & brings the deep woods filled with beauty right up close – and I enjoy the long, beautiful rides on the trails out back…

quad in woodsdog sled

Now… How cool is THIS?  A woman with a dog sled!?  In NJ?  I’ve gotta say –  I love New Jersey!  We’ve got ocean beaches,  lakes,  rivers, bays,  mountains,  flat lands,  pine lands,  forests,  x-country & downhill skiing,  camping,  kayaking, waterfalls,  hiking and tons of trails for horses…  And all of this – a short distance away from everything!

A snowy hike is always good… and I do LOVE being outside!   I long ago discovered – with the right gear – lots of light layers and good socks & boots – (and a hot mug of coffee)…  I’m good to go!

snowy hike xcountry ski


But I guess I’m a bit brave about Winter… humm…  spoiled actually…  as I know, when I get back from my outside fun… that waiting for me – is my fiddle & a bow – a sweet mandolin  a bodhran – and sometimes – even an uilleann piper!

mando bodhran fiddle

GADS!  and dare I forget… always waiting – is the ever present, ever purring… always lounging by the fire… the total portrait of  a perfect “HOUSE cat”… warm, fat, well fed – and ready to curl up in any lap that’s available!  my boy – BINX!

fire companion

And of course… the winter wouldn’t be complete… without lots of good cooking…  Had lots of mid-winter gatherings with lots of good food, music, friends & family…  and my Mom can whip up the BEST Yorkshire pudding in the world!  Mmm!

mom cooking

Sooo….  good food, wine, lively tunes, friends & family, a warm blazing fires… and many charming companions – of all sorts have made the Winter…so good…  and I love it.

So… I will fiddle away within the remaining weeks of Winter… and learn to be quite content in it.

playin' fiddle

And even now – as I write this… a Winter storm is blanketing us – yet again – in another blanket of quiet white…     I enjoy the calm, quieting  “shhhhh”  – that Winter seems to whisper…  as He slows the hectic pace of the world down, yet again,   and makes everything and everyone – once again – becomes still…

Enjoy folks… look for the beauty in the day, & do the best you can do.  Nothing we can do about the weather… but make the best of it!  Stay warm & be safe!  xoxo Jennifer




In the darkening skies of Christmas Eve…

In the quietness of Christmas eve…  as the day dims to a close…  and the Winter Solstice… is still hanging thick, dark… and enveloping us in the cold, winter air… in these moments… I can’t help but reflect on the year’s events…


The awful storm Sandy, and what she left us in – and out of…  ahh, but then – the Spring  came anyway…  and with it, the wonderful, beautiful gardens that sprang… once again from the earth… leading us boldly into the beautiful, languid days of summer.  Days filled with the rich fragrance of bountiful flowers, warm earth,  mossy trails,  and of course,  the plentiful veggies – that were gifted from Earth’s garden…  (and my somewhat artfully disheveled –  “Garden of Weedin’ as I like to call it…)


Then Oohhh… there comes the breezy… star lit nights, and all the wonderful days… in the long weekends of camping – under the blue, velvet nights…  when the fires crackled… and the sparks from the flames – traveled up towards the sky… until the sparks – blended with the twinkling stars…  and became one…  oh,  it was

Almost as beautiful – as the morning of the Summer Solstice… when the sun rose on my little camp… beaming through the trees, on a beautiful, summer dawn.

Then, the cool fingers of Fall crept in and encircled us…  and yet… the camp fires continued to burn brightly in the cooling, Autumn nights…    I can say,   all in all… it’s been a very good,  joyful,  (albeit complex at times – of course) plentiful year.

Things changed,  and things improved – in so many areas of life this year…  and though I tend to buck change…  I have grown weary of doing so…  and have decided to just embrace change…  for it is  -always- there… and things are always changing…

I remind myself – that there has been, through everything this year, the blessings of good health, strength, fitness,  and happiness…   And so now I find myself – drifting gently down….   like a downy feather,  moving, sweeping gently in the wind…  coming to rest… on… the Eve… of  Christmas…  and it makes me feel, strangely…  rarely,  still.


Tomorrow…  for us Christians… is the holy ‘Night of nights’… the night that…  if I choose to feel it  – I can  move…  much closer to God,  than I do at all other times – during the year…    Idk…  maybe it’s just me,  but I think this is one of those nights when…  maybe God… is a little bit more gentle…. more thoughtful, more open – to patiently listening to the silent, murmured prayers I offer up… and maybe – more than any other night in the long year –  he perhaps… understands me better…

I guess what I’m saying is…  I know I’m not the most reverent person  – and probably make God raise a questioning eyebrow a bit more than most do – now and again…  And I think… he probably BROKE the  “Jennifer”  mold… deliberately – after I came along…   always shaking His head in dismay… or holding His head in His hands, listening to me with dread…   But I think that maybe – on Christmas… it’s a little bit better, and maybe I have a better chance at saying to Him…  what I need to,  what I want to.      And that is…    Thank you.

Well… anyway my dear friends…  I’m just wishing you, a Merry Christmas…  May God grant you… peace, joy and health…  and music… Ohhh… lots and lots – of wonderful music!   Happy holidays, Merry Christmas and a wonderful new year to come!

P.S.   Here’s my puppy… “Sligo”… a Border Collie…  and although he wasn’t thrilled about wearing this Santa hat…   he did it for me…  because I asked him to,   and he loves me!   :)

sligo baby


Kirby’s Mill Apple Festival!

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Hi Friends!!!

If you haven’t noted it yet on your calendar… NEXT Saturday, October 12th, is the 35th Annual – Kirby’s Mill Apple Festival!!!   It’s a free event for the public, and a day filled with Apple EVERYTHING!  Great vendors, good food, and ahemmmm…  If I must say so myself… great music!!

Here’s the link for directions, and more info if you need it:


We’ll be at our regular spot, in the main barn – at the center of Kirby’s Mill festivities…  Directly across from the actual Mill & pond.   We’re playing from 11 am – to 3 pm and will have all our cd’s and merchandise for sale as well!


Here’s the crew from years past, selling our t-shirts, cd’s, AWESOME tote bags and cami’s!  So… come on by – and say hi!


Best part is…  It’s a FREE afternoon of awesome family fun, and all sorts of interesting things to see & do!   And the weather’s suppose to be beautiful!  Hope to see you there!