In 2003, Ellen Stimson and her husband moved from St. Louis to Dorset, VT, bought a general store, put five years into trying to keep it afloat, and eventually were forced to sell. Out of that unpromising beginning Stimson crafted a national career as a warts-and-all flatlander-moves-to-Vermont humorist. The title of her first book pretty much summed it up: Mud Season: How One Woman’s Dream of Moving to Vermont, Raising Children, Chickens and Sheep, and Running the Old Country Store Pretty Much Led to One Calamity After Another.
Then came 2014's Good Grief, which continued much along the same lines. In 2015, however, Stimson took things in a somewhat different direction with An Old-Fashioned Christmas: Sweet Traditions for Hearth and Home. She was still willing to be blunt -- "An old-fashioned Christmas may be a bit about magic, but it can also be at least a little bit about old-fashioned strife and new resentments,” she wrote -- but this time with recipes and craft ideas.
On Wednesday, December 12, Stimson will make the trek up from Dorset to the Norman Williams Public Library in Woodstock to, as the library puts it, "help us all get in the holiday spirit" with a reading, conversation, and general high-spirited socializing. The event begins at 1 pm. The Yankee Bookshop will have copies of Stimson's books on hand -- and as always with library events supported by the store, a portion of the sales will go to the library.