What I Did on My Spring Vacation (and Fresh Art)

Hi folks. I’m still waiting for some clarification regarding that whole Massive Chalice Bloodline thing. I’ll still be doing a bloodline, but it’s increasingly looking like I won’t be allowed to do anything that ties in with anything else. They’re all being really nice and cool about it, but once you get to a certain level in any business, the swamp of intellectual property rights can be more trouble than it is worth to navigate. Unfortunately, my brain isn’t wired correctly to work in little teeny nuggets such as this, so it might not be within my means to churn out something particularly good with the allowable parameters. Such is life.

In the meantime, my twitter followers have been enduring a steady stream of vacation photos and chatter during the past week, since I was visiting the grandparents in Vermont. And you folks shall not be spared the same fate! AHH-HAHAHA! Stand by for the blog equivalent of a boring conversation at the water cooler. If you’re not interested in that, skip down to the bottom, where I’ll flip back to talking about the books and such. Also, my website is being a pain about uploading images right now, so check out the tumblr post for some pictures.

On Monday we went to Starksboro, VT. If you’ve never been to Vermont, I recommend it, particularly during the summer. It tends to be about twenty degrees cooler, though there are a lot of farms, so you might also get an introduction to the sensory wonderland that is manure season. In the past we would spend a whole month in Vermont, and most of that time would be spent camping, hiking, and having camp fires. This time we decided to do some of the touristy stuff, which for the Lallos means ‘eating strange new things in strange new places.’

The first stop is always Dakin Farms and Magic Hat Brewery to stock up on fancy beer (for my brother Mike) and meats and cheeses (for me). Incidentally, if you ever get the chance to try honey butter, maple kettle corn, or cob smoked cheddar, do so. They are excellent. Georgette (my sister-in-law) is a wine drinker, and Vermont has plenty of vineyards, so on our first full day we picked a few of those. I, by the way, am not a drinker of any kind, so when I joined in on a few wine tastings I probably doubled the amount of alcohol I’ve drunk in my entire life. It has reaffirmed that I’m not a fan of wine, though ice wines and ice ciders are the closest to my sort of beverage.

The next day was my day, or as we dubbed it, “The Day of Dairy”. We took a trip up to Cabot Creamery and watched them make cheese. Did you know that if you are a cheese maker with a beard, they make you wear a hairnet on your chin? They do! Also, either Jordan is a really popular name for cheese makers or people were sharing lab coats, because I saw two Jordans working side by side. I tried about a dozen cheeses and decided to take home some Artisan Reserve and Hot Buffalo, though Everything Bagel is excellent too. From there we went to the Ben and Jerry’s factory for a Brownie Special with Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ice cream topped with hot fudge and nuts.

The largest city in Vermont is Burlington, which sits right on the shore of Lake Champlain, so we took a trip up there next. Church Street is a cool pedestrian mall, and there we sampled some more wine, checked out some local art, and of course, ate. This time it was a Bahn Mi Pork burger, plus what they called “Plymouth Rumrunner” cheese, which was a 90 day cave aged raw milk cheese. There as also poutine with duck gravy, which was so good. Then we took a boat tour of the lake, got mooned by a local as he jumped off a cliff into the water, and headed home.

Any time what we weren’t out and about, we were visiting with my grandparents, Pop and Mawna. Both are nearing ninety and still living on their own. It was a fantastic time!


I’ve been commissioning art like a maniac. In addition to a few recommended artists I’d been interested in getting artwork from, a number of truly talented artists seem to have fallen on some hard times, so I’ve been commissioning things to help toss them some extra money. So here’s what I got!

Two great images from robo-shark:

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A wonderful little Squee from Chelsea Kenna:

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And a great (poster-sized) image of Myranda and Myn from Bri Mercedes:

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SO GOOD! And there’s more art on the way!

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