This past weekend, well, it was all about the Chilmark School for me. Brooks, my ten-year-old fifth-grader, returned from the school’s Outing Program ski trip. Seven students in all ventured to Carrabassett Valley, Maine’s Sugarloaf Mountain. Brooks along with his classmates Noah Glasgow, Menasha Leport, Keira McCarthy, Fynn Monahan, Imogen Taylor, and Bella Thorpe had three days of skiing at the Loaf. Day one was hard pack. Day two they cruised through fresh powder. Day three they indulged in perfectly groomed slopes. Their three days offered up three different experiences. They lessoned each morning, mixed in some schoolwork after lunch, had free ski in the afternoon and a dip in the pool each evening. Noah celebrated his 11th birthday with his classmates in their Wildflower condo. The lucky seven returned from their five-day adventure seeming older, more confident, and certainly feeling a sense of accomplishment. I am so very proud of them all, even though it is a bit sobering to realize this is their last big adventure as Chilmark School students. The lucky seven will graduate in June and move on to middle school in the fall.

The four parent chaperones — Marshall Carroll, Julie Flanders, Eric Glasgow, and Nancy Leport — returned just in time to help pull together all of the finishing touches for the big PTO/Outing Program fundraiser held at the CCC this past Saturday night. The Center was transformed into a sparkly rock and blues nightclub. The music of Johnny Hoy & the Bluefish managed to pull the eclectic crowd of party-goers onto the dance floor. I must say, the joint was really jumpin’. About half way through the evening, our locally famous charter fishing captains Scott McDowell and Buddy Vanderhoop took center stage as the live auctioneers. As one would expect, there was some jovial banter back and forth between the two. We wouldn’t have had it any other way. Kudos to all of the folks who made this event happen. An extra big thank you to those who went above and beyond the call of duty running last minute errands, staying into the wee hours of the morning to clean up, climbing very tall ladders, removing a truckload of trash, and so on. Hillary Noyes-Keene, Patricia Bacon, Keith Fenner, Edie Prescott, Molly Glasgow, John Keene, Marshall Carroll, Caroline Flanders, Doug Bardwell, Jess Bradlee, Julie Flanders, Deb Hancock, and those I inadvertently may have overlooked, our children and I graciously thank you. The town of Chilmark truly is a remarkable community to be a part of. We are so lucky to be surrounded by folks who, time and time again say, “I will do that” and actually do. Life in the town of Chilmark never fails me. My friends, my neighbors, my community never offer empty promises. Oh boy, I must be overtired. You are experiencing the reflective and sappy side of me. I will stop.

Wow. Congratulations to Lucas Murphy of Murphy’s Law Motorsports, son of Lynn and Susan, on his 11th place finish out of 150 competitors at the eighth annual Griffin King of the Hammers. This ultimate four-wheel-drive race captured the attention of Lucas and his team. Johnson Valley, deep in the heart of the California desert, is the home of this highly competitive all-day race. Lucas’s time was an impressive 10:29:10.

I’d like to extend my condolences to the family of Ted Meinelt. He was laid to rest this past weekend at the age of 97. I seemed to time my drives by his house as he was checking the mail. He would share a wave and a smile and then turn to walk back to The Old House, typically with a hand full of envelopes. His presence will certainly be missed.

Valentine’s Day has certainly crept up on me this year. If the same thing has happened to you and you find yourself buzzing by the Santander Bank, stop in and pick up some of Lisa Vanderhoop’s Sea Dogs Valentine cards. One of her cards is a definite standout with its sweet play on words — the photo is a box filled with chocolate Lab puppies. You needn’t leave town to get a delightful assortment of goodies for that someone you are sweet on. Chilmark Chocolates are a definite must, lunch out at The Food Truck, and maybe some lobsters from Stanley for an indulgent dinner. It would simply be a gastronomical fantasy. Enjoy all. May the love be with you.