One of my big grand new year’s resolutions is to lose 25 pounds. To God be the glory, I’m not overweight right now, but only barely. I want to live comfortably within the “normal” weight range instead of teetering on the high end of it. My plan is to run three times a week, do power yoga two times a week, and do a 20 minute relaxing yoga stretch in the evenings after the kids go to bed. And, of course, aim to eat healthier!

Right after I made this resolution I was ready to get started. The biggest obstacle is that I live in upstate New York and it’s January. I decided for my first trek out I’d just walk and see how bad the sidewalks were. I donned my snow boots and headed out. I realized right away I would not be able to run my usual route — the sidewalks were treacherous with half melted and then re-frozen snow covered with new snow! But the view was beautiful. I’m running in the opposite direction for now but I had to take one more walk the old way (perhaps I should call it the summer way?) to photograph the path. Abe, my oldest son, slogged along with me for company.

The first house we see when we walk out our door is a two story painted bright red owned by a family who loves to decorate for the holidays! They go all out for Halloween and for Christmas. This year was no exception.

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Want to see Santa a little closer?

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Right next to us is the house the kids refer to as the “haunted house.” It’s an wonderful stone structure that appears to be lived in, but we’ve never seen anyone come in or go out. The spooky thing is that occasionally we’ll see a light on at night!

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We walk down a few feet past an Ace Hardware and then turn right towards the library. I wish the route were a little quieter but it’s usually very busy with cars quizzing by. I love to look at the houses as I walk along. Here are a few of my favorites:

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This one looks so beautiful in the snow and I love the porch.

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Looks at those gorgeous columns! I think I’m partial to colonial. 🙂

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I’m fascinated by this house for some reason. I took the shot from the side to include the bright red barn, but it’s the house that intrigues me. It has an amazing porch but is rarely ever decorated.

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We’re getting close to the big beautiful Episcopal church!

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I’m guessing this house next door to the church is the rectory but I don’t know for certain.

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Here’s the church up close. Don’t you just love the bell tower? I always love seeing it as I pass by but it seems even more special covered with quiet snow!

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This is the creche on the side of the church. I snapped this shot waiting for traffic to die down so I could take a picture of the house across the street. I love that Christmas decorations in New York stay up through Epiphany!

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The house across the street from the church.

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I don’t always notice it but today I noticed those icicles!

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Cool old cemetery behind the church. I took this shot for Amanda, who loves to poke around old cemeteries. 🙂

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Finally, our destination — the library. Literally a five minute walk from our house. Although Abe pointed out that this time it took more like twenty minutes because I had to photograph nearly every house in between!

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We *had* to walk a bit past the library to get this house because it is my very favorite house in all of New York! I love the picket fence, I love the porch, I love the color, I love the Christmas decor… Not long after we moved here this house was for sale. I SO wanted to buy it. If only it wasn’t on a busy street… and over $250,000!!

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The last house I photographed from behind on our way back home. I never see the front of it on my walk because I turn left when I get to it. I wanted to take a picture of it because one early morning last June this house caught fire. I saw the little sun room engulfed in flames and I cried and prayed that the family would be safe and the house not completely lost. It was not. The fire was contained and now, by Christmas, they have re-built and a regular passer-by would never know the scary time they went through only six months ago.

There you have it! A walk around my little town in upstate New York in the middle of winter. I’m thinking I’ll have to do this post again in the spring when the daffodils are out. What do you think? 😉