Tag Archives: Rockport

TAH-DAH, Spring….and Roy Moore Lobster Co.

Marlin and I came upon a sight for sore eyes this afternoon on our walk through Rockport.

We were both pretty excited to see the one and only Kenny Porter…and crew…wrapping up the official Day #1 of the 2015 season at Roy Moore Lobster Co.   Fantastic!

Now we just need Helmut’s Strudel and an ice cream joint or two to open up and we can get on with our happy warmer weather lives.  Winter is over and signs of spring are everywhere!

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I Never Knew

I can’t even begin to count how many times I have walked by this sign without bothering to read it.  So, the other day, I did.  I’m not sure why it never occurred to me that there was an actual bear associated with Bearskin Neck.  Felt bad for the bear, but glad to have learned something new.

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Closing Time

This is one blog post that I don’t consider myself worthy to write for a couple of different reasons.  First of all, with only 15 years of residency in the amazing town of Rockport, I’m still a bit of a newcomer.  Secondly, my behind has never had the privilege of sitting in one of the well-worn leather seats that could tell almost 60 years worth of tales. Let alone the iconic horse saddle seat.  If scissors could speak.  What in the world am I talking about?   Well, THE hub of Rockport, of course.  Walt Julian’s barber shop.

As new parents, my husband and I made lots of decisions together…and some apart.  We agreed together on finding out the sex of our children before they were born.  We agreed together on names.  I, for example, decided on what the nursery would look like. And my husband, without consultation, decided that naturally their first haircuts would be done by the one-and-only Walt.  As if I would have argued.

Even prior to my own children, I can remember MANY an early morning that my husband would creep out of bed at a somewhat insane hour to get a jump on the line at Walt’s.  I still laugh about the day that he left at the crack of dawn as I slept on in disbelief.  I grew even more incredulous when the phone rang and it was one of his good friends….who had recently moved to Beverly…calling to see if he had already left the house.  When I said that he had already been gone for about 15 minutes all I got in return was, “Oh crap.  I’m never going to beat that line. Click.”

So, I’m sure most of you know by now, that Walt Julian has closed his barber shop. With almost 60 years of story telling, listening, laughing, trimming, buzzing, shaving, and lollipop giving….he leaves an enormous scrapbook of memories in his wake.

While I’ve only met Walt a handful of times myself…and I am not as rooted in history here in Rockport as many others are…I am thrilled and honored to have photos of Thatcher and Finn in Walt’s care.

Congratulations, Walt, on a respected and iconic career, for creating memories for generations of Cape Ann residents, and, now, on your retirement.

I wonder just how many family scrapbooks contain photos of you!  You will be missed!

One if by Land, Two if by Sea

Just a few of the things that caught my eye while out walking Marlin last night. Including “our beach” and bits and pieces of Bearskin Neck….such as one of the most photographed lanterns on Cape Ann. It was nice to be able to hit the streets again without having to battle colossal snow banks.  Bring on Spring!

Rockport Local Food Forum

Well, it’s been a while since I posted. But in the meantime, Nichole Shrafft and others have been killin’ it in the representing Rockport department, so that’s been awesome. A whole bunch of stuff is coming up, so I wanted to pass along some information, starting with a local Food Forum in Rockport scheduled for next Thursday night. We can all get together and figure out the answers to some pressing food-related issues. There’s an anonymous survey too, in case you want to make your thoughts known and submit any questions to the panelists. Click HERE for the survey.

Feel free to share the poster

Feel free to share the poster

A Half Milestone

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Today all systems were go: 33°F, daylight, dry pavement, and a craving to walk some distance without my cane. Janet took the cane at the front door and we walked at a medium pace to my favorite animal sculpture park. After stopping to take a few photos, we walked back home. Total distance: One half mile using no cane or other walking aid.

As the journey started thirteen months ago, I couldn’t roll onto my side in a hospital bed. I graduated to a wheelchair, then a walker, followed by a cane, and now two legs. I’m currently scouting around for a longer full–milestone trail. (Photo by Janet).

GloucesterCast 120 Taped 2/26/15 With Guests Kim Smith and Donna Ardizzoni with Host Joey Ciaramitaro

GloucesterCastSquareGloucesterCast 120 Taped 2/26/15 With Guests Kim Smith and Donna Ardizzoni with Host Joey Ciaramitaro

Topics Include: Happy Birthday Bex, Gloucester Quilter, Condolences To The Family FOB Joe Testeverde, Cacciatore’s Should Be Opening Soon, Maria Seniti Has Left 525 On Good Footing and Is Now Concentrating Her Efforts At The Franklin Cape Ann, Rockport To Get Year Round Sushi Joint, Charlie’s Place Great Breakfast, Codfish Cheeks, Market Basket vs Stop and Shop, Grocery Shopping Habits, Difficulty Sourcing Shellfish, Cooking On The Cast Iron Skillet, The Perfect Baked Potato Recipe, Cooking Rib Eye’s On The Cast Iron Skillet, Cape Ann Giclee, Donna’s Print On Metal, Live Streaming Sista Felicia’s St Joseph’s Pasta Making Saturday at 10:30AM, MCC Awards Gloucester, Will Gardening Centers Be Crushed By The Snow Cover?, Yesterday’s Insane Commute, Just Ordered Derek Sanderson’s Book, Thank You To The Grand Isle’s Service Time In Gloucester, The Space Aged Replacement For The Grand Isle

podcasticon1Joey Ciaramitaro Donna Ardizonni 120th podcast
Subscribe to The GloucesterCast Podcast by Email

One Of The First Ten Subscribers to the Gloucester Will Win Two Tickets To Cape Ann Cinema and Stage and A T-Shirt. Prize Needs To Be Picked Up At the Dock and will be Announced In The Next Podcast

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LIVE MAVIS STAPLES and the FABULOUS RICK HOLMSTROM BAND at the Shalin Liu

Rockin steady in Rockport with Mavis Staples and her fabulously talented backup trio, the Rick Holmstrom Band.

 

Live Mavis Staples Rockin Rockport at the Shalin Liu with fabulous LA trio Rick Holmstrom Band!

A video posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

 

This was a show not to be missed and according to several of the production team members, was one of the best they’ve ever produced at the Shalin Liu. I couldn’t agree more! Rick Holmstrom on guitar, Jeff Turmes, on bass, and Stephen Hodges on drums. Bring back Mavis and the Rick Holmstrom Band-an extraordinary group of talented musicians.

 

 

You can see Mavis, along with her father Pop Staples and siblings, the Staple Singers, come in at around one minute. The song was included in the film The Last Waltz (directed by Martin Scorsese), a documentary about The Band’s last concert. 

 

 

 

 

Blizzard Valentine’s Dinner

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 As the blizzard started, we walked over to the Emerson Inn for a s
pecial dinner (it’s always special there). I had the pan seared scallops with lentils and wine sauce. It was delicious, but because of what chemo has done to my taste buds, I ate sparingly. The leftovers will make great omelettes at home. It was nice to dress up. The place is not as formal as my outfit indicates.

Janet, my Valentine: She had the Rack of Lamb, rubbed with brown sugar and dijon mustard, served with a Port Wine reduction. She cleaned the plate with a simile on her face. Leftovers: 4 bare lamb bones.

 http://www.emersoninnbythesea.com/

One Last Snow Photo

Photo out my window. There are three cars out there but I can only spot one car antenna. Must be the truck.

Photo out my window. There are three cars out there but I can only spot one car antenna. Must be the truck.

OK, one more, and yes I know about ice dams. Maybe I can sneak my hand out there and turn the grill on high. That might do it.

OK, one more, and yes I know about ice dams. Maybe I can sneak my hand out there and turn the grill on high. That might do it.

Before you know it the planet wobbles the other way and it is 4th of July in Rockport and Rubber Duck is getting soft in the heat from the leftover bonfire.

Before you know it the planet wobbles the other way and it is 4th of July in Rockport and Rubber Duck is getting soft in the heat from the leftover bonfire.

Drifting

SnowDrift5582wmYesterday (2/10/15) after the snow ended, I asked the Pigeon Cove shovelers if they’d seen any drifts as big as ours. No, they thought the drift in front of the garage was the worst. Fortunately, no path or walkway goes thru it. Again, they dug us out and now we have each other’s phone numbers and emails. Heike called to ask if I needed my gallery shoveled out, but I didn’t know the condition of the sidewalk. She works down the street.

 

Pigeon Cove Shovelers

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I physically can’t shovel snow and Janet had shoveler’s fatigue. This morning, I saw three people walking up the street, all carrying shovels. We asked if they were looking for work, and they started clearing our driveway and walkways. These were, in fact, our neighbors Eva Maria (L), Heike (mother of these kids), and Levin (R). They did an outstanding job, speak German (their native language), and I asked them to come back after the next snow storm.

When FRIENDS Have Babies

What do so many of us have in common?  Surely not all of us….but, many of us?

I’m guessing that, like me, many of you spent 30 minutes each week for 10 solid years hanging out with friends.   And, by “friends”, I really mean FRIENDS….as in the television show.

From September 22, 1994 to May 6, 2004 I tuned in for 30 minutes of serious bonding with Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Ross, Chandler, and Joey.  Good times.

Say what you will, but I’m not going to lie, I think we should all consider ourselves lucky if we are able to say that we have friendships in our lives as strong as theirs.   And, yes, I do realize that they were merely television actors…

But, fresh out of college when we first “met” I loved getting to know them.  I loved watching their ups and downs…while laughing, crying, wishing, hoping, wanting, wondering…you name it.  We should all have a “Chandler” or a “Rachel” or a “Ross” or a “Phoebe” that we treasure in our lives.

So, if…like me…you were tuning in during that decade, you may remember when Ross and Rachel had a baby.  An adorable little baby girl named Emma.  But…did you know that Emma was played by not one but two adorable little girls named Cali and Noelle.   AND….that Callie and Noelle have all sorts of Cape Ann roots.

They are the stunning, funny, generous, smart, talented, kind, and polite 13 year old daughters of Geoff Sheldon and Gretchen Carpenter.  While they now live out in California, Geoff hails from Rockport.  And nothing beats 4th of July week when they all usually make their pilgrimage home!

My own warm fuzzies about Geoff began the night I was introduced to him and my future husband on Christmas Eve back in 1998.  Ironically, smack in the middle of the FRIENDS years.  Little did I know when I met Geoff that night that I’d marry the guy he was out celebrating Christmas with….and that he and his beautiful wife would later boast to sharing custody of their daughters with Jennifer Aniston and David Schwimmer. Well, you know, kind of.  And then there’s “Aunt Heather”.  When Heather isn’t out being amazing on horseback….she can be found in all of her gorgeous glory making Halibut Point Restaurant and even better place to be!

So, how fun to read this article yesterday!

This is What Baby Emma Looks Like Now

Photo Courtesy of Reddit

Photo Courtesy of Reddit

Also pretty cool is…

The twins made #11 of this Hollywood List:

Top 20 TV Baby Births of All Time

 

 

What to Feed the Robins

American Robin in the Snow ©Kim Smith 2014The robins in our community have several different habits for surviving winter. There are year round resident robins that breed throughout Cape Ann during warmer months and also spend the winter here.  A second group only breeds in our region, then migrates further south during the winter months. A third group, the robins that we see flocking to our shores beginning round about January 28th, are migrating from parts further north. They are very hungrand are looking for berries, fruit, and small fish.

In early spring, robins begin to disperse from flocks. The ground thaws and worms, insects, and snails once again become part of the robin’s diet. Spring, too, is when we begin to hear the beautiful liquid notes of the male robin. He is singing to attract a mate. The robin’s song is one of the of most beloved and it is his music with which we associate the coming of spring.

With several edits and updates since I first wrote the following article, I think you’ll find the information helpful in knowing what to feed and to plant for the robins.

American Robin Sumac ©Kim Smith 2014Flock of American Robins Eating Sumac, Halibut Point Rockport

Food for the American Robin

During the winter months Cape Ann often becomes home to large flocks of robins, and we have had the joy of hosting numerous numbers in our garden. I can’t help but notice their arrival. Their shadows descend, crisscrossing the window light, followed by a wild rumpus in the ‘Dragon Lady’ hollies. This pair of hollies is planted on opposing sides of the garden path, alongside my home office. I have learned to stealthily sneak up to a window, as any sudden activity inside startles birds that are investigating our garden, and they quickly disperse. Dining not only on berries of the ‘Dragon Ladies’, but also the ‘Blue Princess’ Meserve holly and winterberry bushes, I find dozens of noisy, hungry robins.

These winter nomads flock to trees and shrubs that hold their fruit through January and February, feasting on red cedar, American holly, Meserve hollies, chokecherries, crabapples, sumac, and juniper. Robins traveling along the shores of Cape Ann also comb the shoreline for mollusks, and go belly-deep for fish fry. Depleting their food supply, they move onto the next location. Gardens rife with fruiting shrubs and trees make an ideal destination for our migrating friends.

Year round resident robins will call your garden home when provided with trays of chopped fruit and raisins, supplemented with meal worms.

What to Plant for Robins

The garden designed to attract nesting pairs of summer resident robins, as well as flocks of winter travelers, would be comprised of trees and shrubs for nest building, plants that bear fruit and berries that are edible during the summer and fall, and plants that bear fruits that persist through the winter months. Suburban gardens and agricultural areas provide the ideal habitat, with open fields and lawns for foraging insects as well as trees and hedgerows in which to build their nests.

The following plants, suggested with robins in mind, will also attract legions of songbirds and Lepidoptera. The list is comprised primarily of indigenous species with a few non-native, but not invasive, plants included.

Trees for nesting ~ American Holly (Ilex opaca), Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana), Red Maple (Acer rubrum), Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum), Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida).

Summer and autumn fruit bearing trees, shrubs and vines for robins ~ Black Cherry (Prunus serotina), Blackberry (Rubus spp.), Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida), Gray Dogwood (C. racemosa), Red-osier Dogwood (C. sericea), Silky Dogwood (C. amomum), Elderberry (Sambucus canadensis), Apple (Malus pumila), Virginia Rose (Rosa virginiana), Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum), Lowbush Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium), Wild Grape (Vitis spp.).

Trees and shrubs with fruits persisting through winter ~ Winterberry (Ilex verticillata), Mountain Ash (Sorbus americana), Crabapple (Malus spp.)Sargent’s Crabapple (Malus sargentii), American Holly (Ilex opaca), Meserve Hollies (Ilex meserveae), Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana), Common Juniper (Juniperus communis), Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana), Smooth Sumac (Rhus glabra), Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina).

American Robin winter crabapple turdus migratorius, americanus ©kim Smith 2015American Robin Eating Crabapples

I Love Sumac

Worms!

The American Robin and Bird Food

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