Monday, March 31, 2014

Out Like A Lamb

Goodbye March!  'Til next year!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Maternity Ward

Maybe there IS still three feet of snow on the ground, but something tells me Spring is right around the corner...  Bumble lambed early, two weeks ago, but now we've had nine more in the last day and a half, all at once!  Probably another 6-8 to go.  So far, everyone well.  Two mamas needed help getting their babies started eating, but otherwise a bumper crop of healthy, little lambs.  They smell so nice, like sweet, clean hay and an indescribable, lovely scent that is uniquely lamb-y.  Good to have these guys to cuddle when my own bubs are away.  

These are Bumble's twins, Gumball and Harry Potter.  (The boys are in charge of names this year.)  Being a couple weeks old, they are starting to run and bounce around and are the most adorable tiny comedians ever.      

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


(Sorry...long, boring post, but might be useful to some!) I just wanted to turn friends on to the Vermont Council For Gifted Education...if you are in the same boat as I am, and have a moment to check them out, you might find some of their programs or information helpful! Having gifted children probably sounds great, I'm sure, and mostly it is. I love my kids more than anything and wouldn't want them to be anybody but who they are. Only what lots of people don't realize is that gifted children come with a whole slew of EXTRA making everyday life tricky sometimes. From nervous habits that include facial ticks or constant, involuntary humming, to food aversions, distractability, sensory issues, odd fears, vivid imaginations/nightmares, tantrums over noises, smells, tastes, bumpy's a lot to cope with. And not really what springs to mind when you hear the word "gifted", eh? People mostly think "gifted" means - Perfect, Dream know, the genius with straight A's, plays the cello, writes poems, is a sports star, well-rounded, well-adjusted, etc, etc, etc? But in reality it means a child that has an overwhelming capacity for seeing, comprehending, and feeling even...TOO overwhelming on occasion for a little person, hence the outbursts. These kids have major potential to do amazing things, but also, major needs. I feel like I've got to have my Mom Radar doubled...tripled...quadrupled at times to stay on top of their feelings. Especially if they are under any kind of stress or in the middle of a rocky ride, which mine often are. This past year, as Ira's sensory obsessions/eating habits have gone haywire and Eli's ever-evolving anxiety behaviors are occasionally getting him picked on, at their counselor's recommendation, we've taken some weekend workshops through Vermont Council for Gifted Education to find ways to do this better. Well, John and I have, while the kids get to animate cartoon drawings or run around in the dark with thermal cameras or take one of the other fun classes available during the time the parents are learning about what makes their gifted child tick. One of the best parts is not just listening to doctors and teachers talk, but hearing other parent's stories of similar meltdowns and arguments and learning processes. There's a lot of laughter and exasperation and understanding shared. We discuss why Common Core Curriculum and standardized tests are not our friends, despite our children's advanced intelligence. My kids are very, very smart and very, very sensitive, which is what I need to be, to parent them as best I can, but also what schools need to understand before they lump the masses of children together and compare them to each other instead of looking at the individual's needs for learning. I'm thankful that we are lucky enough to be in a small town/small school where the kids ARE usually looked at as individuals and I would love that to be the norm for EVERY child because a country full of cookie-cutter humans seems like a horrible idea to me, not to mention it leaves out most of us who can't fit the mold. It's not easy to raise or teach gifted kids, or a child with special needs, but the paybacks are huge. Eli and Ira are so incredibly unique, talented, funny, kind, brilliant, creative, loving and curious. They make me proud in a million ways, more than I could list if I had a LIFETIME. I'm blessed to have them for sons and want them, and every other child, to be able to cultivate their own personal passions. We all see the world differently, and I'm hoping that can be a celebrated thing in the education system. Everybody has a gift. They should be allowed to find it.                 

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Winter That Wouldn't Quit

The first day of Spring last week brought a huge snowfall, as did the day after, and the day after that, and the day after THAT.  I love snow, not complaining, but the bitter cold is starting to wear me down a little.  We've gone through nearly twice the wood and fuel as usual which is tough on the wallet and sleeping in a full sweatsuit is starting to get a bit old.  But...the Robins are still singing, even as they cower on snow-covered branches and look confused.  I'm thinking this will be the most epic Mud Season of my lifetime when the many feet of snow finally melts.  Feeling somewhat bad for area sugar-makers who are not having any sap runs thus far, and when they do, they'll probably only get a week in, but the ticks won't be a problem this coming summer and it's longer we get to ski and sled!  I'm fine with the waiting game, feels like the anticipation right before Christmas, which is half the fun.  Spring will come eventually, it always does.  


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Star Gazing

Don't we all wish for a crystal ball some days?

Thursday, March 13, 2014

First Tooth Lost

The Tooth Fairy flew through a blizzard that left another couple of feet of snow to visit Ira last night.  School was called off today and we are enjoying our cozy house while the wind blows drifts higher and higher outside.  With little pals coming over to play, things are about to get noisy and fun...four energetic boys crashing around playing hide-and-seek and LEGOS and tag.  There are just all so wonderful and sweet and funny and cuddly.  But growing so fast!  I wish this could last forever.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hello Hollywood!

I don't know when we've had a more glamorous or fun weekend.  The kids were overcome with excitement as we watched the world premiere of their movie, Pasghetti Western.  We adults had seen it before the final cut at a prescreening party, and of course I've probably seen every scene in it a dozen times besides, as we wrote and Myra was editing, but we had held off letting the cast see the completed version until now...they were not disappointed!  Playing to a packed house, both nights, it was a wild success.  One of my favorite parts was knowing how many people brought their children to the theater for the first time ever to see THIS movie.  That was pretty special.  So many wide-eyes tots, discovering the magic of the Big Screen!

"LOVED EVERY MINUTE of this precious amazing movie .. Vermont Life ... it was just perfect.." -Dianne Conners

"Pasghetti Western was adorably awesome! I like the milk choices that were on tap at the Belly Up Saloon...nice detail." -Cindy Ross

"Wonderful dinner at Worthy Kitchen followed by a wonderful viewing of Pasghetti Western starring 2 current students and 2 prior students. So proud of them. Emily Ferro tell the boys Alex wants to know when it comes on video!" -Rachel Brown

 "I was there and loved it!!" -Marybeth Lange

 "Totally enjoyed the performance. What fun!" -Maxine Young

"It was beyond fun. The kids were great, the story a good one and very 'ya can't get thearah from herah" Vermont humor. A must see!" -Carrie Ballou

"we all really enjoyed it - great work Emily and Myra!" -Theo Fetter

"What great pictures! What a FUN evening and FAB movie!" -Stephanie Waterman

"Thanks to all the actors and creative spirits. It was worth the wait. Best movin-picture-show ever!" -Randy Leavitt

"We drove down from Maine to be part of something wonderful... and we weren't disappointed! From the opening words by the films creators, to the outtakes during the final credits, we were mesmerized by the spectacular scenery, the superb narration, and the visible commitment of the actors to the plot and the inherent humor it delivered.
Good vs. Evil has been a rehashed plot since the beginning of film, but this was not a prepackaged story in an old format, in fact, it was a warm and wonderful mix of the best of local flavor and the remarkable vision of those who gave it to us!
To the entire cast and crew: a big thank you, and congratulations on a job well done." -Jim Townsend

"Lynne and I had the best of times at your movie premiere! It was so much fun and so well done. The kids were all so cute and such good little actors. We wish you the very best and can't wait until the DVD comes out." -Sonny Bride

"Thank you so much for the best event of 2014!" -Kelly Green

"We loved loved loved it! A well polished, genuinely fun and heartwarming film. Congrats! Hoping there will be a DVD or digital copy." -Melody DeFlorio

"We enjoyed the movie and the festivities so much. Great cinematography---incredible views but your choice of footage of the kids and the voice over was wonderful. 
Really had a nice time. Film was wonderful." -Charlotte Faccio

"Another amazing night at the movie theater of Pasghuetti Western  once again thank you Myra Howe Hudson and Emiy Ferro and many more for the effort and hard work that was put in this movie"- Macey Leigh Carbino

"What a MARVELOUS film! Thanks, Myra and Jim, for giving your/our community such humor and wonderful entertainment, immortalizing the sweetness of these children and our hills of Vermont. This film ROCKS!!!! All the best with it." -Helen Heslop

"And you said it was rough around the edges. I though it quite professional, entertaining, sweet and I'm running out of good things to say (it's already been one of those Daylight Saving seasons)." -Greg Clasby

 "Great night! Great movie! Bravo!" -Ellen Miles

"Can't wait to buy the DVD and share this wonderful movie with those who could not make this very special evening. It was so much more than I imagined it would be. So many "favorite" parts Well done!" -Kim Furlong

"We had a wonderful time at last nights gala event! Loved, loved, loved Pasghetti Western! Beautiful children, beautiful photography and the narration(!!) perfection! Congratulations!!" -Pamela Payson

"Wonderful!!!! We loved the movie and the whole night was fun! It was so great to see everyone again. I didn't get to speak directly to you Myra but did see hubby Jim and Emily and the rest of the family. Congratulations on a big success! Just love you Howe girls and your families, you are all so creative and fun. Thanks for sharing this with all of us." -Aunt Elinor Gray

"We laughed, we cried, we realized on a much different level how wonderful the entire Hudson-Howe clan are and what their combined creative juices bring to the community. If anything, this film is an evocation of the love of family and place. What a heartfelt portrait of what matters in life." -Jim DiStefano 

"Had an absolute ball at The Pasghetti Western premiere tonight! I can't say enough about the movie. It was so charming and clever and funny and sweet and beautiful and just plain great! Thank you to Jim and Myra Howe Hudson, all the little actors and all the rest of the people involved in the making of this film. There is another showing tomorrow, so go and see it! A sure fire guarantee to tickle your funny bone and warm your heart." -Shannon Freeman

"Wonderful pictures - and woo-hoo Emily! I had a great time, and the movie was so fun to watch. Good job all!" -Lois Rogers

And now, we'll bask in the glow and relax for maybe a day or two before starting the process of scheduling it to play other theaters...and plan for the DVD release.  I sometimes feel like a terrible hypocrite, seeing as I only allow my kids a very limited amount of what we call "screen time" basically shunning the idea of raising couch potatoes, and here we are, turning film making into a family affair?  Ah well, if there must be movies, let's make sure there are good ones!  And I'm happy-ish that my boy's taste in films is of a very unique variety, at least.  They are suckers for old, silent, black and white films, choosing Harold Llyod or Buster Keaton over Disney any day.  If fact, they picked out their hats for this event themselves.  Ira declared he was Fred Astaire, and Eli was Charlie Chaplain.  Even though I generally approve of their choices, they certainly didn't get that preference from me...(give me a sappy, 90's chick flick and some ice cream and I'm happy) but they're getting a good classic film education from John, who has the exact same taste.  Anyhow, they were thrilled beyond thrilled with all the events this weekend: riding in a limo, red carpet treatment, being surrounded by not only the people who love them but admiring fans, signing autographs, answering questions, discovering secret backstage staircases, picking up on theater lingo, seeing their pictures on t-shirts/posters/stickers/hats, loading up on popcorn and the taboo root beer!  My hands were shaking like mad when, stepping on the hem of my long dress, I almost pulled a Jennifer Lawrence as I climbed the stage steps to welcome everyone and introduce Myra and Jim.  I am so proud of them and our entire family for pulling this off.  I kept looking around, hearing the roars of laughter and things people were's so much more than we ever thought, just amazing and I can hardly believe it.  Forever now, we have this totally pure snapshot of our children, suspended in time, that makes you laugh, cry and laugh some more.  Incredible grateful for this opportunity.  It's been the ride of a lifetime.    

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Town Meeting!

 Normally, on Town Meeting day, we slog in from the parking lot with muddy boots and rush out again afterward to get back to the sugarhouses, but this year we woke to 10 below temps with no sugaring in sight.  I was talked into covering the Town Meeting and School Meeting for the paper, which I haven't done for years and was sorely out of practice.  Trying to jot down all the figures as budgets were discussed... well, me and numbers....we just don't get along.  Hopefully there aren't too many misprints.  At least that's one thing out of the way, this busiest of busy weeks, plus I am reminded afresh why I am a writer, not a reporter.  And anyhow, there was pie.

Saturday, March 1, 2014


 One week from today, Saturday March 8th at 7PM (another showing on Sunday) our Pasghetti Western premieres at the Woodstock Town Hall Theatre.  (Tickets for the Red Carpet Event can be purchased at  This week will be full of last minute busy we can barely think straight!  We hope everyone plans on attending! xo