MV Obsession

My obsession with Martha's Vineyard.. phototography..genealogy and life in general and this and that…

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Vineyard Februaries…

I’ve been to Martha’s Vineyard in February and I love it.  I love it any time but February is as different from summer on the Vineyard as you can possibly get.

There’s a  cold crispness in the air, the colors are more vivid, the Island is quiet and yet speaks volumes to those who take the time to look, listen and drink in the beauty and wonder that is the soul of Martha’s Vineyard.

February 1989…  a light dusting of snow made everything look like powdered sugar had fallen all over the Island.

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February 1995… no snow that trip but bitter cold. Did not stop me from visiting the Gay Head cliffs in Aquinnah on the western most tip of the Vineyard… or hiking through the woods of Christiantown to visit the tiny chapel there.  (Christiantown link)


I also experimented a bit with black and white film. From top left… Edgartown harbor, Christiantown stone wall..Sengekontacket Pond and South Beach.


February 2007… bitter cold, dusting of over night snow, icy ponds and harbors… and brilliant sunsets.



My birthday is in February and sadly the only one I’ve ever spent on the Vineyard was in 1950 when my beloved godmother, Gertrude Norris passed away. But I’m not anywhere near done having birthdays so who knows what the future will bring 🙂





My One Vineyard Christmas…

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I’ve been to Martha’s Vineyard around Christmastime many times but to my recollection there is only one time in my life that I actually spent Christmas on the Vineyard. I was probably around 5 or 6 and my mother and I went to MV to be with my godparents.



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Edward and Gertrude Norris (Nana and Pop) were my godparents. They lived part of the year in their house in Oak Bluffs which is where I spent my childhood summers. The other part of the year they lived in Newark, NJ downstairs in the same house we lived in. They were the most important people in my life besides my parents. They never had children of their own and they thought of us as their family. When my mother graduated from high school on MV she moved to Newark, NJ to live with them and to find work.

One Christmas, in the early 1950’s, when Nana and Pop were elderly, having health problems and living year round on the Vineyard and missing us, my mother decided she and I should go and spend Christmas with them. I was too young to realize this might be the last Christmas for one or both of them, all I knew was that I was going to wake up Christmas morning ON THE VINEYARD. How great would that be. The only glitch was that my dad couldn’t get off work to come with us but he insisted we go. Talk about being torn.


I seem to remember there was a dusting of snow on Christmas morning… even if there wasn’t I like to think there was.  There were presents… one in particular I remember because I asked for it every year. A nurses kit. It was a white square box with a red cross on the side. Inside were band-aids, gauze bandages, a wooden thermomenter and a stethescope, a name tag… and the most important article.. a nurses cap. I spent the most of the morning bandaging people up whether they wanted to be or not.

All of a sudden I heard a faint knock on the front door !! I ran to open it and let out a shriek… it was my dad standing there with a big smile and a shirt box. A shirt box !! Yes indeed that’s all he had with him. No suitcase. No duffle bag. Just a shirt box with a couple of clean shirts and other essentials inside it. He liked to travel light.

It turned out to be one of the most wonderful Christmases of my childhood.

I am blessed to have the memories of that one Christmas on Martha’s Vineyard and of Nana and Pop, two people who were such an important part of my life.


….and happy holiday memories to all. ❤


October On The Vineyard, Part I …

October is speeding along too quickly and if I’m doing posts about October on Martha’s Vineyard I’d better get going on them.

I was lucky enough to spend 5 glorious days on the Vineyard with my daughter Deb and our friend and honorary family member, Dawn.   We packed a lot into the days we were there including meeting a new step-cousin and visiting with a dear friend as well.

In this first post let’s visit the

Hope you enjoyed this autumn walk through the Campground.

Stay tuned for upcoming exciting, fun-filled and picturesque adventures. 🙂


Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Assn

history of the Campground

the Tabernacle



Carly and Harry …

That’s Carly Simon and Harry Connick, Jr of course 🙂


It all began with this little snippet in the Vineyard Gazette 27 years ago in September of 1990. My daughter Deb likes Harry Connick Jr and I’m a huge fan of Carly Simon, I have been even before I knew of her Vineyard connection. This seemed like a perfect weekend getaway for us but how could I manage to get tickets when I live in NJ and they were only on sale on the Vineyard !


I did it. I was determined and when it involves the Vineyard my determination is un-stoppable. So off we went. There were a few glitches along the way concerning MV accommodations and ferry reservations so we decided to stay in Falmouth on the mainland and just go to the Vineyard for the day of the concert.


It was a spectacular September Sunday afternoon on the Vineyard, the Campground was filled with happy concertgoers bustling around.

Before the concert began we were talking with a woman sitting next to us who was going on and on about how excited she was to be seeing Carly Simon. She said she had chatted about it with her seat mate on the small plane she had flown over to MV on that afternoon. She told him she had no idea who Harry Connick, Jr was, but that she was mainly there to see Carly.

When Harry stepped onto the stage she gasped and said “oh my god, that’s the young man I was talking to on the plane.”

At 3pm the concert began. Harry’s band was fantastic and Harry’s voice velvety smooth.



After about an hour or so of great music the lights were turned off. The only illumination was the sun shining through the stained glass windows around the perimeter of the Tabernacle !! And out stepped…..



I was beside myself. In actuality though the person beside me was Carly’s mother!! I have seen Carly in concert several times since then but seeing her on the Vineyard and at the Tabernacle was something really special for me.

Harry and Carly sang a few songs together, their voices meshed beautifully. Carly did a few songs alone and then way too soon it was over. What a fantastic day, one we’ll never forget.

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The reviews of the concert were glowing, much like the talents of Carly Simon and Harry Connick Jr. as they stood side by side on the stage of the Tabernacle.

After the concert we had ‘drinks’ with the band at the Oyster Bar in Oak Bluffs… us and about 100 other people and then we headed to Edgartown for dinner.

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Too quickly our lovely day on the Vineyard was coming to an end. We drove back to Oak Bluffs for one last look at the now darkened Tabernacle. We had booked a late ferry and it’s one of the few times I’ve sailed at night. The sky was star filled, a cool breeze was blowing and a young man on board was strumming his guitar and singing softly. Perfect day.

I’ve seen Carly 6 or 7 times but this was the first time and there couldn’t have been a more perfect place.


(sorry for the graininess of some of the pictures, they are copies of the originals)


Stitching The Vineyard…




This is my wall of Vineyard counted cross stitch projects. The Vineyard map in the upper left hand corner was the first one in 1993. Tisbury in the bottom middle was the last one in 2011. There were other non-MV projects done in between the Vineyard ones and I also did eight more of the Vineyard maps during that time too.


These are not the only Vineyard counted cross stitches I’ve done though. The one closest to my heart is the Tabernacle designed especially for me by my daughter Deb. (please excuse the glare).


The Tabernacle is my favorite place on the Vineyard for many reasons and so this picture means more to me than I can ever put into words.

This is my counted cross stitch masterpiece. My daughter Deb took a photograph of the Tabernacle… blew it up to an 8×10 and charted it by hand on graph paper. There might have been computer programs for that but this was the early 1990’s and she didn’t have one and I’m not sure we even had a computer!. She also bought the material and my daughter Patty bought the threads and that was my Christmas gift that year. All I had to do was sew it. People always ask how long it takes to do projects so I kept track. Over the course of 3 months I sewed a total of 138 hours… every inch of the picture is counted cross stitches… even all the blue sky… and there seemed like endless amounts of that. After it was finished we took it, along with the original 5×7 photograph and had it framed. For a couple of years I just wasn’t happy with the frame though so when I had my other MV counted cross stitches framed I gave this picture a new one. I also added a little plaque at the bottom that says The Tabernacle, Oak Bluffs – Martha’s Vineyard.

But I had said I couldn’t do it… ever… I would never be able to do counted cross stitch. Too hard. Too boring. I had too many excuses. Then my daughter Deb saw the counted cross stitch of the map of Martha’s Vineyard and the rest is history. We figured if I was ever to do counted cross stitching surely something Vineyard related would get me started. She even said that if I hated doing it she’d finish the map for me. Sounded like a good deal and so I began. One X after another… counting, counting every single stitch… but then it started looking like MV and I was pretty impressed and proud of myself.

We even got written up in the Vineyard Gazette… June 21, 1996



Weekly Photo Challenge: Collage…

Ah, collages, what to do, what to do !


A random assortment of some of my favorite photos….

And of course my beloved Martha’s Vineyard