After a getaway in rural Vermont—its mountains ablaze in autumnal glory, its Main Streets quaint and welcoming—Ellen Stimson and her family made up their minds even before they got back to St. Louis: “We’re moving to Vermont!” The reality, they quickly learned, is a little muddier than they'd imagined, but, happily, worth all the trouble. Enjoy an account of their adventures when Ellen Stimson visits Phoenix Books Burlington
In self-deprecating and hilarious fashion, Mud Season chronicles Stimson’s transition from city life to rickety Vermont farmhouse. When she decides she wants to own and operate the old-fashioned village store in idyllic Dorset, pop. 2,036, one of the oldest continually operating country stores in the country, she learns the hard way that “improvements” are not always welcomed warmly by folks who like things just fine the way they’d always been. She dreams of patrons streaming in for fresh-made sandwiches and an old-timey candy counter, but she learns they’re boycotting the store. Why? “The bread,” they tell her, “you moved the bread from where it used to be.” Can the citified newcomer turn the tide of mistrust before she ruins the business altogether? Follow the author to her wit’s end and back, through her full immersion into rural life—swapping high heels for muck boots; raising chickens and sheep; fighting off skunks, foxes, and bears; and making a few friends and allies in a tiny town steeped in history, local tradition, and that dyed-in-the-wool Vermont “character.”
"A picturesque family vacation in rural Vermont inspires Stimson and her husband to pay a visit to what they call the “Life Store” to shop for a new adventure: packing up their city life in St. Louis and moving into an old farmhouse in Dorset, VT (pop. 2,036). After taking over the old country store, they try to keep it afloat through the five Vermont seasons: spring, summer, fall, winter, and mud. But these city mice discover that country life is not exactly what they imagined. Moving the bread in the store inspires town-wide gossip. A hen in their “yuppie chicken coop” turns out to be a rooster. Stimson chases a goat while wearing a bathing suit and is forced to face the fragility of life when her family takes in lamb orphans. Mishap after mishap, Stimson compares their new life to “putting out a fire using a hose of gasoline.” VERDICT: Written with self-deprecating honesty, this memoir is for anyone who has ever gone on vacation and fantasized about staying." - Library Journal
Ellen Stimson lives in a beautiful old farmhouse nestled in a high valley in the mountains of Vermont with her wild pack of children,not-so-wild husband, and completely civilized group of chickens, sheep, dogs, and cats. She has a not-at-all-fashionable collection of muck boots. This is her first book.