Category Archives: Want

It’s much harder to write a good review than a bad one

Inge Berge

It’s not that hard to write review panning a concert or an album.  You’ve probably read many such reviews.  It’s much more difficult to write a glowing piece that doesn’t sound corny or like a puff piece.  Below is one of the best examples of a rave review that I’ve ever read. It is at once intelligent, witty, entertaining, straight to the point and completely devoid of obscure references and highfalutin language reviewers all to often use in an attempt to show off their intellect.  It’s written by local singer/songwriter/composer/lighting designer Inge Berge, who is actually smart, so he doesn’t need to try and convince anybody.  Check it out:

Fans of exquisite music: Pay attention to Ruby Rose Fox. Her headlining at The Cabot tonight, courtesy of Peter Van Ness and GimmeLive is easily among the top 3 shows I’ve seen all year (and I see way too many shows.) This show was pure magic. Sublime. Genius.

Her songwriting is smart, heartfelt, genre-bending, profound and just plain gorgeous. Her musicianship is impeccable. Her stage presence is mysterious, deep, eclectic and sexy as all get-out. The backup singers blend like butter yet cut like a razor. The band is road-tight and stadium-confident. The material is presented with rock balls, sensual vulnerability and analytic intelligence. A show chemically cleansed of clichés and standard showbiz cheese.

I count myself among the lucky few who got to experience this evening of not-yet-world-famous MA-grown music before it turns into something more industry-processed. (Hopefully not.)

Unfortunately, what I find of Ruby Rose Fox’s music currently online does not quite do justice to the show I saw tonight. But I understand there’s a full length CD in the works. I’m first in line to purchase.

If You Have Water Bugs, You Should Have One of These

If your kids are water bugs, like mine, then you need to check out these new KYPADS.  I did a quick blog post about them earlier this spring, but would be remiss to not follow up now that we’ve had the awesome opportunity to demo these incredible boards for a few weeks.

We were lucky enough to take two KYPADS with us to Nantucket back in June and then were thrilled to hang on to them a bit longer so as to hit the beaches around Cape Ann too!

These boards were designed by a some local peeps who had the vision to create boards that are super kid friendly, easy to manage, and up to the challenge of some kid wear and tear.

My humble review of the boards?  Well, first of all, they couldn’t have been easier to get on and off my Jeep…which I might add, is pretty high.  I was able to put them up and strap them on by myself after having gotten the hang of the ratchet straps.  Once the boards were off the Jeep most of the kids that we were traveling with (ages 6-12) had no trouble carrying them down to the beach with no help whatsoever!  That is a HUGE plus!  My absolute FAVORITE thing about the boards?  Each and every child, without exception, quickly mastered how to maneuver the boards and took to the water with no fear, no assistance, and no difficulty. More importantly than that…each child, without exception, came off the water feeling proud of the independence they had just demonstrated…and pretty psyched that they had become so darn good at something so quickly.

My boys can’t get enough of the water.  They are happiest when they are at the beach or on a boat.  To be able to hit the water solo and with such confidence in such a cool way was so excellent for them.  They were so proud of themselves and I couldn’t have been happier.

Check out the KYPADs HERE and learn about how they were created and how fabulous they truly are.

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A Narrow Escape

Yesterday I posted some photos of the luxury yacht Time For Us as it exited the Annisquam River and entered Gloucester Harbor.  I also included the link in case you were interested in renting it.

Here’s that information again.

The 122 foot yacht can be rented for a mere $70,000 per week…plus expenses.  The good news is that it comes with a 5 member crew, sleeps 8 in its four cabins, comes with two wave runners, two kayaks, 1 wakeboard, water skis, some “towable toys”, and two tenders…one measuring 32 feet and a smaller one that is 16 feet.  In the photos below you can see her larger tender following her into the harbor. Not bad.

The interior is indeed pretty sweet as is the outdoor deck/lounging space…and, of course, the jacuzzi isn’t so bad either.

Here’s some video of her as she conducted a big squeeze and narrowly exited the river through the Blyman Bridge.

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Skaterdater

Ever since we visited Virginia Beach and rollerbladed alongside skateboarders on the boardwalk each morning, my boys have been asking for skateboards. While totally clueless when it comes to the skateboarding scene, my guess was that the cheap ones that we kept seeing in each gift shop that we happened upon, weren’t going to be smooth or easy to ride.

The boys also wanted new helmets for their birthdays…which happen to fall just 3 weeks apart. In addition to the helmets, they wanted cool stickers to decorate their helmets with.  Stumped. So, I took to social media and shouted out to my Facebook friends.  Loaded with tons of awesome suggestions, I took to the mall (shudder) and went to a store I had never even noticed before.

Not going to lie….I felt a wee bit like a fish out of water in the too-hip-for-the-43-frumpy-school-teacher-mom-of-two that I am.  I found the stickers in the display case (just as I was told that I would) and started chatting with a couple of the employees. They couldn’t have been nicer…or more tolerant of my ridiculous lack of knowledge.  With a pretty excellent pile of stickers in hand, one of the kids offered to show me some skateboards….boards, that is.  I’m guessing it is fairly uncool to use the full name.

Turns out that I was right to have not pulled the trigger and bought a gift shop board.  Not smooth.  Harder to ride.  Wear easily.  Boys will lose interest.

I was schooled on the parts of a true board and the different ways to customize them.  I was also taught what to look for when buying starter boards for the boys to help set them up for success.

Turns out, for $99 the boys could go into the store, customize their own boards, help assemble them, and not only get a sweet board, but also have a pretty cool hands-on learning experience….while chatting with some pretty cool employees. I got such a kick out of my own experience that I couldn’t wait to go back with them.  By “customize” I mean, pick out their own deck (board), wheels, grip tape, wheel bearings, and wheel mounts.  Pretty cool.  They got to use the vice to assemble the wheels, help sand the grip tape into place, and screw it all together. Pretty cool again.

The boys were absolutely beaming as they walked out of the store with their new boards and have been working hard to get the hang of it. Have you been on a skateboard lately?  Holy crap…not easy.  Thatcher got the hang of it pretty easily.  Finn is having some trouble figuring out if he’s left-footed or right-footed, but is doing pretty great for his age.

With such short, little wish lists for their birthdays, I’m feeling pretty psyched that they are so happy! Total score for mom…maybe I’m just a little bit cool after all (this week anyway).

Check out Zumiez website HERE….and their store at the North Shore Shopping Center.

 

Would You Slip N Fly?

I am all about maximizing summer fun.  Maybe, for a few different reasons, even more so this year.

I’ve always loved summer….and, as it approaches quickly, you’ll hear me go on and on about it soon enough. Fair warning.

That isn’t what this post is about though….that’ll come later.

For now, check out these somewhat insane videos of other people maximizing summer fun for some inspiration.  I’d so be the one to get hurt.  I’d either over shoot on the Slip N Fly and go right out of the pool or go straight up and back down landing smack on the slide.  Yikes.

Good for these peeps though.  So my question to you is….Would you Slip N Fly or not?

 

BIKINI-SPEEDO DODGEBALL 2013 – THE MOVIE #gloucesterma

For all of you folks that have never witnessed THE MOVIE for 2013, please take the time to do so. You will be entertained.

(for ease of playback on a video of this length, click the play button, then pause it for a few seconds, it speeds up the loading process)

And please come out and support this years event, it’a for the NEXT STEP, they change lives…you could, too!

With Friends Like These

Well, with a friend like this….

I had a really good friend once…actually not very long ago at all…but then, one freezing cold, grey winter day (yesterday), he decided it would be fun to start sending texts…all day long…from beachfront establishments in Key West, Florida.

So, obviously, we are friends no more.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for posting vacation photos on your Facebook page or Instagram or whatnot…where people have the choice to look long and hard..or ignore all together…but TEXTS…come on, seriously.

Why you got to be so cruel?

What makes it worse…if possible…is that this friend has a somewhat unlimited supply of something that I covet a great deal…TIME.

Don’t get me wrong, when he works, he works really hard….but, when he’s off…his days stretch out before him like a long story waiting to be written. Actually, if I’m being honest, maybe more like a movie  (If you’re thinking The Hangover, you’re probably on the mark).

The photos alone were malicious enough, but the comments that accompanied them were plain old spiteful.

Things like:

“I was going to come home tomorrow, but I don’t think so”

 

“Tough day…can’t you see my drink is empty”

 

“Morning Coffee. On the beach.”

 

“Made a move, my new view”

 

“Holding down the fort.”

 

“Taking one for the team.”

 

“4 pounds of stone crab claws…sorry I forgot to send a pic”

“Text later.  Going for a swim.”

“Think I’m going to hang in for another week or so. I’m up for the challenge.”

Did I mention that Key West, Florida is one of my all-time favorite places?

I’m going to miss my friend.  But not his texts.  ;)

Be well.  Or, as he would say, “See you out there.  Good game.”

Why Did I Wait So Long?

Sadly, Christmas morning came and went and Santa had not left me a Suzy Kuzy. So, I became resolute to order one for myself.

But, I forgot.

An exceptionally cold day at the hockey rink was all it took for me to come home one day last week and order one up!

It is even better than I imagined it would be.

So, now, the only question is…  Why in the world did I wait so long?

Hockey moms, I suggest you order yours NOW for next season!

Pick your color here…..  pick your refreshment later.  #SuzyKuzy

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A Girl Can Dream

I took the boys to the New England Boat Show the other day.  We arrived at 12:45 to be there for the 1:00 opening and left at 6:45.  6 hours. Honestly, we could have stayed much longer (and gosh knows the boys wanted to), but we we were stopping for dinner on the way home and I was getting antsy to hit the road.

I have about 200 photos of a large variety of boats to weed through, that I’ll post later in the week, but for now….think Hinckley.  Sigh.

There are a million boats that I’d be happy with and there were several boat manufacturers that caught my eye the other day.  There are some boats that I like for one reason…like fishing….and then there are boats that I like for different reasons…like “cruising.”  There are even some boats that I would absolutely sell my home for the very second the boys go off to college and live upon happily for the rest of my life….like the Ranger Tug.

That having been said, there is one boat that I see in my dreams a bit more clearly than all others…and that is the one and only Hinckley.  Ummm…sigh, again.

HINCKLEY YACHTS   Worth taking a look.

If you were unfamiliar with Hinckley prior to last week, you may have quickly learned about them after having seen the images below go viral. The brand new 43-foot Talaria was making its way to the New England Boat Show when it lost its battle with snow banks at the intersection of Summer and Lincoln Street in Boston. The irony of the picnic-style boat, whose sleek design screams CAREFREE SUMMER DAYS, stuck in Boston’s dirty snowbanks in the midst of what could be a record breaking winter squeezed my heart just a bit.

So, I was delighted to see the Maggie Mae, gorgeous and unscathed, in all of her tremendous glory, in the Hinckley/Hunt Pavilion.

I was also delighted to learn a bit about the company, as well as, the boat owner who was eagerly anticipating the delivery of his purchase.  I was even more delighted to hear that he was understanding and realistic as to his boat’s little city adventure.  Kudos to you, sir.

The learning about the company part was somewhat accidental….and I have 5-year old, Finn, to thank for the lesson.

Upon stepping foot on the Maggie Mae, Finn immediately announced (and loudly I might add), “I don’t like this boat.”  After a quick exchanging of, “I’m sorry…are you my son?” eye contact, he quickly explained.   “These people are Philadelphia Flyers fans.”

Huh?

“Well, look, they have the Flyers logo all over the boat.”

Kudos to you also, Finn.

So, of course, we had to ask about their choice of logos.

And….here is the deal.

As an elementary school teacher I have spent a good amount of time teaching my students about Greek and Roman Gods and Goddesses…and while I would recognize the sandals worn by Greek God, Hermes, and Roman God, Mercury….I’m not sure that I ever knew that those sandals were called Talaria. The Talaria, as it would be, is a very fitting choice to serve as the logo of Hinckley Yachts if you ask me. Swift, regal, noble, refined….special.

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While enjoying my one and only visit on the Maggie Mae (sigh), I also learned that her new owner, Robert A. Vincent, sounds like a really nice guy!  Mr. Vincent, in fact, was due to arrive at the New England Boat Show later in the evening for a Christening Party for his gorgeous boat….with a catered party and all.  Had my iPhone not died, I would have stalked a bit for some photos of the ceremony. Had I trusted that Thatcher and Finn would not choose that exact moment to demonstrate how tired they were becoming…I would have at least snuck back to observe from afar.

I would like to add that, while Thatcher, Finn and I were certainly not in the market for purchasing a Hinckley, the boat company’s representatives were cordial, helpful, kind, and patient with the boys…and with me.  The only thing that could have made our visit nicer would have been a large, flat body of water, some sushi, and some champagne.  And maybe the keys and a captain.  Just saying.

 

What Do You Get When You Cross a Kayak and a Paddle Board?

Brilliant!   This is what you get when you cross a kayak and a paddle board….

a KYPAD….and it is awesome!

If you have kids who love being on the water, you should really check these out.

I have to brag and say that they are the brainchild of a friend of mine….and some of her close friends.  They dreamt of the idea while watching their kids struggling with some larger kayaks and boards.  They researched, designed, built….dreamed some more….and then executed the millions of steps and details that go into creating something as excellent as a Dream Come True. And, of it all, came the KYPAD.  You can bet that as soon as they’re in the budget the Schrafft boys will be on one of these.  They are incredibly light so that the kiddos can lug them themselves.  A huge bonus.  They can be used as a stand-up paddle board or the kids can take advantage of the cut-out seat and foot grooves for really steady sit-down paddling.  Win-win.

Hear the whole story and read more HERE!

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Why a KYPAD?
As parents, we want our kids to have fun! We invest in expensive recreational equipment that is appealing for a short time or ends up broken. Trends change. Sometimes it’s not very rewarding. We set out to create a different kind of product. Something for kids of all ages and abilities to enjoy. A well constructed board that would last. The combination of a kayak and a paddle board. The best of the most popular and exciting water based activities rolled into one. The KYPAD. KYPAD (kayak/paddleboard) was developed to meet the demands of two water sports in one incredibly lightweight, durable board. Every feature was designed with kids in mind including the most progressive lightweight material of 2.0 eps to the solid finishing touches of vacuum bagging.  Our goal is for every child to have a successful experience on the water that fosters independence, strength, fun, adventure, and exploration.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can We Start Talking About This Again?

Outdoor ice rink here in town?

We’re a big hockey and skating family for sure.  In the course of the a 9 day span last week and this week, my young boys will don their skates 11 times. They can’t get enough and have not once even hinted at wanting to skip a practice, a game, a skating party, or extra time on a sheet of ice or pond somewhere.

So, after recapping our busy weekend the other night while trying to fall asleep, I remembered some talk about turning 14-C2 into a skating rink!

I immediately realized that I must have heard about it here, on GMG, because…well, you know…where else would it have been, so I put it into the search queue and found the post I was thinking of.

Check it out here! 

We drive all over the place for outdoor ice time during the winter months when we’re unsure about pond conditions.  We’ve headed into Boston on many occasions and to Market Street in Lynnfield, but I’d much rather skate here in town…on the waterfront.

I have to admit that I’m not privy to the details so forgive me if it was ruled out for some commonly known reason, but if not I vote that we get the conversation started again!  I’ll be the first one in to volunteer some rink duty hours if it’s ever a go!

Who’s in?

 

Head to the Lights

I’m reaching out to the world’s greatest FOBs for some help!

My boys have been getting a kick out of watching The Great Christmas Light Fight on TV.  Now they want to go see some “epic” Christmas lights, but I’ve yet to find a fabulous neighborhood.

I have such fond memories of driving around East Gloucester and off of Grapevine Road to see the lights when I was younger and I’d like my boys to do the same.  We’re willing to drive 30 minutes or so if it’ll be worth it, so if you have any suggestions, fire away!

Thanks in advance for any and all help!

The Great Christmas Light Fight

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Auction! Cash only November 22, 2014 Auction Sat. Nov. 22nd. 6pm (Preview 1-6) 6 Lexington Ave. Magnolia Village in Gloucester, MA 01930

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Details and pictures

at

www.capeannauction.com

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Auction Sat. Nov. 22nd. 6pm (Preview 1-6)
6 Lexington Ave.

Magnolia Village in Gloucester, MA 01930

Making My List and Checking it Twice

Well, since there’s no denying that the holidays are coming…. I may as well make my list.

So, here’s item #1

What local peep is going to start cranking these out to sell in downtown Gloucester or Rockport so that I can buy one….or several?

Challenge on.  You make them, I’m first in line to buy some.

This one is from a company called Suzy Kuzy….how excellent.

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check more out here

video: THE FUTURE IS BACK – and it’s a McFly dream come true!

Now, some folks may have seen the Tony Hawk spoof video about hover boards, but this one right here is the real deal. They have a kickstarter as you would imagine, and yes it’s over funding in like a day. May introduce to you the HENDO HOVER BOARD!

RUBBER DUCK ARMY ASSEMBLING ON THE ISLAND in a secret location. Homie is on sentry duty.

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88 Rubber Duck sisters form the Rubber Duck Army. We have a Navy. We have NERF guns. We know this island like the back of our rubber wing. You cannot hide. Because the secret to our success? We have way too much time on our hands. FREE RUBBER DUCK! FREE RUBBER DUCK!

Burnham’s Field renovation update July 22, 2014

Why is a grown man sliding down the slide of the new “tot” play structure? It’s project manager Steve Winslow with this week’s video update on the renovation of Burnham’s Field in Gloucester, Mass. Interview by John McElhenny of the Friends of Burnham’s Field. http://www.burnhamsfield.org

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