So If The Next Time You See me I’m Bleeding Profusely From My Face…

You can blame it on my decision to take a shot on some CVS brand disposable razors.

I ran out of  blades for my Gillette Mach III razor blade shaver about a month ago and finally succumbed to the need to buy new ones.  Went to Target and  couldn’t bring myself to spend $32 for 15 razor blades.  Seems insane to me.  Those dinky little Mach III refills cost over $2 each.

So after another full week of using the dull month and a week old razor blade I finally decided I had to suck it up and buy some new blades.  Went to CVS and saw they had a big sale on razor blades and grabbed this deal-

2 four packs of what looks to be the premium CVS brand disposables.  They were $6.99 per pack and if you bought two packs you got $5 back. Basically $14 minus a $5 rebate for 8 disposable razors comes out to just over a buck a razor.  If I’m found days from now dead,  in a pool of blood from multiple deep inflicted razor cut wounds you’ll know why.

What do you buy for shaving products?  Do you go premium Gillette or the cheapest thing possible?  I’d be interested to hear what people are doing these days.

2013-11-13 10.17.11

Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities! ~ Notes from a Gloucester Garden

At this time of year, with the holidays knocking at our doors and the scramble for gift ideas beginning, I try to remember to post excerpts and information about my book Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities! ~ Notes from a Gloucester Garden (which I both wrote and illustrated), and “The Pollinator Garden” lecture that I gave last evening in Pepperel reminded me to do so again this year. My publisher, Mr. Godine, always thanks me for this endeavor!

We sold a good stack of books last night and I was so appreciative for the opportunity to present my program to an interested audience engaged in learning more about the connection between what we plant and the pollinators we invite to our gardens. Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities! speaks to both the greater and smaller concepts in garden-making and is a how-to design tutorial that covers the gamut from creating the framework to what to plant to attract the tiniest of butterflies. The design concepts are universal, and although set in Gloucester, Oh Garden makes for a thoughtful gift for anyone on your holiday gift-giving list!

Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities! sells for only $14.00 on Amazon, which is a $21.00 value off the publisher’s list price of $35.00.

Click here to purchase a copy of Oh Garden.

Front Door Cosmos Kitty ©Kim Smith 2009

From my book’s introduction ~

We all carry within us the image of a home to create and a garden to tend. Perhaps you dream, as I do, of a welcoming haven to foster family bonds and friendships and to rejoice in life’s journey. The garden and the home to which it belongs becomes a memory catcher to weave a life’s tapestry.

To imagine a garden paradise, one must live in one’s home and listen to its own particular music. Gradually, by degrees, the idea of the garden will grow. A home and a garden should look as though they had grown up together and will, when one takes the time and necessary thought. A garden cannot be hurriedly created. Delicious, blissful pleasure is derived from the garden’s use as a continuation of the home.

Our gardens provide a safe harbor from hectic lives, a place to celebrate life and an opportunity to express our creativity. The garden is an inviting sanctuary to guide one through the rhythms and harmonies of the natural world. Planted to nurture the imagination and hearten the soul, a “new” cottage garden is a whimsical, exuberant intermingling of scented flowers and foliage, fresh fruit, and savory herbs.

As a designer, I believe I am here to channel ideas for the benefit of many. This book is my communication of a profound desire to share with readers the immeasurable joy gleaned from creating a personal paradise of one’s own making.

The illustrations are of flowers, songbirds, and butterflies I love to draw and to paint, and selected because they only become more beautiful when intimately observed.

A poetic world lies waiting to be discovered. Let us open the garden gate and take a step within.

Reminder: Ken Duckworth Hosts the Writer’s Book Club on Sunday November 17th

Ken Duckworth ©Kim Smith 2013Ken Duckworth is not only preparing an array of seasonal appetizers, he is also leading the discussion!

Eastern Point Lit House Fall Book Club Calendar

November 17: Ken Duckworth leads a discussion of The Book by Alan Watts. SOLD OUT

Ken Duckworth is the award-winning executive chef of Duckworth’s Bistro, where he focuses on local, seasonal ingredients that supports local industry. Following his passion for all things food, he honed his culinary skills at Saddlebrook Resort in Tampa and The Cloister in Georgia. He has been our gracious host for this series and we are so pleased to have him leading our last discussion of the year.


Artist Spotlight Series – Deb Schradieck

spotlight_deb schradieck

Spotlight on Deb Schradieck

A lifelong artist, Deb studied Illustration at Mass College of Art in Boston, graduating in 1981.

A resident of Westborough (central) MA, she has always craved the sea, and first came to Gloucester as a boater seeking a fun place to spend the weekend, and fell in love with Cape Ann. Now, she and her husband keep their boat at Pier 7 Marina in East Gloucester. This provides a seasonal base and a stepping-stone to living here year-round. This close proximity to the harbor creates good opportunities for photography, which then become references for artwork done later in the studio.

Her first summer in Gloucester, Deb walked into the Weaver Gallery and was so moved by Jeff’s work that she decided right then and there to make painting a priority. Inspired by the island’s natural beauty and dramatic light, and encouraged by the vibrant community of artists and support for the arts, she got to work. She has since produced dozens of watercolor paintings in a realistic style characterized by vivid color and dramatic light.

A full-time Realtor, Deb has, for many years, drawn house portraits in pen and ink that are given to clients as housewarming gifts. Using the same detailed technique and extensive experience in the medium, she created a 2014 Calendar featuring familiar Gloucester scenes in pen and ink.

Deb is an artist member of the North Shore Arts Association and the Rocky Neck Art Colony. Her work is on display seasonally at the Khan Studio/Good Morning Gloucester Gallery and at the Gallery at the Accommodations, also on Rocky Neck. Visit her website at

You can see more of Deb’s work and find her amazing Gloucester 2014 Calendar at The Cultural Center at Rocky Neck, 6 Wonson Street, East Gloucester during the Rocky Neck Holiday Art & Fine Crafts Festival Saturdays and Sundays, Noon-4 PM November 30 – December 29

E.J. Lefavour

Manchester by the Shop – Surfari

As a start to a series highlighting local shops in Manchester, Christian del Rosario at Surfari agreed to be the first victim!

I have wondered for some time, how is it a surf shop can survive in New England, let alone Manchester by the Sea.  What I have been learning is the incredible appeal of SUP or Stand Up Paddle boarding.  As Christian says paddle boards have become the bicycles of water enthusiasts who can purchase racing models, cruising models and boards built for beginners. Manchester with it’s relatively flat waters, islands to visit and proximity to lakes has been perfect. The chances to exercise, explore hard to reach places, enjoy touring and for some explore yoga on a board and even fish are all around Manchester. Taken to the extreme there are organized races and SUP has even started to appear in rivers running rapids!

The surf market is also strong in the area and Christian says that the season is getting underway now. Storm waves that surfers pray for are stronger in the winter months and the season really extends from October to April.

Surfari sells surf boards, paddle boards, shoes, clothing, beach wear, water sport accessories, sunglasses and gifts. Many items are perfect as boating accessories as well.  Boards can be rented and lessons can be scheduled. They have sun shirts (AKA “Rash guards” for those on boards), and other sun protection items. They also have cold weather equipment for those surfers braving the ocean at this time of year.

In addition to lessons and working with the Manchester Parks and Recreation department, Surfari provides programs for adults and children from May to October. Anyone, not just Manchester residents, can participate in these programs so there are many ways to learn and enjoy SUP boarding.

Christian, his wife Nicole and two daughters have returned to Christian’s home town of Manchester after 13 years away. He has specialized in surfing and paddle boards and most recently was in Nantucket where he sold boards and provided lessons. Opening a retail store in Manchester looked like a great opportunity to expand from selling boards to clothing, accessories and all the other items they now sell.

Surfari is located at 26 Central Street in Manchester. Their website is . Stop in and say “Hi” to Christian and Nicole.

The Four Legged Faithful Playing Nov 23 at Cape Ann Brewery


The Four Legged Faithful are a band made up of 4 ordinary men who all thrive on playing music together. Their aim is not to play traditional folk or bluegrass music, but instead to create beautiful, heart-felt, and genuine music using traditional folk/bluegrass instruments. They create a sound that is honest and reflects the band’s many musical influences from nearly all genres. All members sing; creating multiple combinations of 2, 3, and 4-part harmonies. All members write and sing songs about their thoughts, families, and the natural world that surrounds them. For a band without a drummer, The Four Legged Faithful achieve an incredible level of intensity using foot percussion and layered rhythms throughout every measure.  Check out this video and go see them on Saturday November 23rd.

Check online for latest information
Check online for latest information

Smoky Mashed Potatoes

PrintAre you looking for a new side dish for your Thanksgiving Dinner?

smoky mashed 1

Smoky Mashed Potatoes


3 lbs. Russet potatoes peeled and cut into 1½ inch pieces

1 stick salted butter, plus 1 tablespoon

1 cup sour cream

½ cup whole milk

2 cups shredded Smoked Gouda Cheese (reserve ½ cup for topping)

2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

4 scallions diced (reserve 1 for topping)

8 thick cut sliced smoked bacon(reserve 2 slices for topping)


1 Fry bacon until crisp, cut/ crumble into bite size pieces, reserve

2 In large sauce pan, place potatoes and 1 teaspoon salt  and enough cold water to cover potatoes by 1 inch, bring to boil over high heat 10-12 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender, strain water in colander return potatoes to hot pan

3 Add 1 stick butter, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, milk, and sour cream to potatoes, mash well


4 Add 1 ½ cup cheese, 6 slices crumbled bacon, and 3 diced scallions to mashed potatoes, mix well

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5 Butter 13x9x2 glass baking dish with 1 tablespoon butter, evenly spread mashed potato mixture into prepared dish


6 Mix reserved bacon, scallion and cheese, scatter over potato mixture


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7 Bake 35 minutes in preheated 375 degree oven, or until mixture is heated throughout and toppings are golden in color; serve warm

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The combination of the smoky cheese and bacon combined with the creamy potatoes, and bite from the scallions are heavenly. I promise your family and guest will love them. My Thanksgiving Recipes are included in my new cookbook “Gifts Of Gold In A Sicilian Kitchen With Sista Felicia, Harvest” to order online click link  ….Or Stop by The GMG table at  Cruisport Gloucester tomorrow evening where I will be selling my “Gifts Of Gold” at The Girls/Guys Night Out Shopping Extravaganza to help support the GHS Photography Class Fundraiser.

Community Stuff 11/14/13

Hi Joey C.,
While we’re busy planning for our Annual Shopping Stroll on Friday, Dec. 6th, we also wanted to share with GMG readers that some shops in Rockport will be extending their hours for Black Friday and Shop Small Saturday!  We hope to see you in downtown Rockport this Holiday Season!
Dawn @ La Provence
4 Main Street
Rockport, Ma 01966


Interfaith Celebration with Dr. Jennifer Peace At Temple Ahavat Achim

Sunday, November 17th at 3 pm


Join us as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Cape Ann Interfaith Commission!

Come share songs and stories from the different faith traditions.

This celebration will be led by Dr. Jennifer Peace, Assistant Professor of Interfaith Studies, Andover-Newton Theological Seminary & Director of the Inter-religious Center for Public Life. Dr. Peace is also a co-editor of “My Neighbor’s Faith: Stories of Interreligious Encounter, Growth, and Transformation”.

Click here to read the three selections from “My Neighbor’s Faith” from Catholic, Buddhist and Jewish perspectives.

This event is free of charge.


Backyard Growers HAS WON $10,000 from Tom’s of Maine!!!!

After a month of intensive on-line voting Backyard Growers came out on top as a winner!!!!

A BIG THANK you to our most awesome Gloucester community for voting up a storm!

We are so lucky to have such amazing community support!

Here’s a link to the full press release:


Your contributions support…

This year, with your support, the Sargent House Museum provided:

  • Educational programs and internships for students and adults.
  • Newly-restored gardens open year-round for public enjoyment.
  • Exciting collections like the John Singer Sargent watercolors and Fitz Henry Lane lithographs.
  • On-going preservation and restoration of a glorious 18th-century home.

Please give generously so that these exciting projects can continue. Donate by check, credit card or Paypal at