More Gloucester Sea Smoke Photos

Sea Smoke Gloucester MA Brace Cove -1 ©Kim Smith 2015Brace Cove Sea Smoke

This morning I set out to check on the swans at Niles Pond and was as captivated by the beautiful sea smoke coming off the Atlantic as were my fellow contributors. I didn’t see the swans, but then again, it was too cold to look for very long.

Sea Smoke Gloucester MA Brace Cove ©Kim Smith 2015 Sea Smoke Gloucester MA Brace Rock ©Kim Smith 2015.JPG Brace Rock

Briar’s Christmas Cookies

Briar's Christmas Cookiie wreath ©Kim Smith 2015Today I met my friend Briar at Passports for lunch and to exchange Christmas gifts. My family looks forward to her exquisite cookies that she bakes and hand decorates each Christmas. Don’t you just love her latest creation, a Snow Globe Cookie?Briar's Christmas Cookies Snow Globe ©Kim Smith 2015JPGSnow Globe Holiday CookieBriar's Christmas Cookies ©Kim Smith 2015

Fabulous Fried Oyster Special at Passports Restaurant

Hands down, without a doubt, and with one thousand percent certainty, Passports Restaurant makes simply the best fried oysters. Today they were on the special menu, combined with another Passports fav, the Caesar Salad. GO!!Best Fried Oysters Gloucester MA ©Kim Smith 2014

Watch “On the Waterfront: Episode 2” From Shep Means and Cape Ann TV

On the Waterfront: Episode 2: Featuring Tony Gross, Cruiseport, and Captain Joe and Sons with host Shep Means.

Erich Archer Writes-

Hello friends of Cape Ann TV,

The second episode of Cape Ann TV’s new original series On the Waterfront is here!

On the Waterfront is a water-to-table concept with each episode highlighting a different form of sea life. We fish it, process it, cook it, and eat it. All along the way we meet the people of Cape Ann making their living On the Waterfront.

On this episode we feature one of the most celebrated and economically important species on Cape Ann – the lobster!

Join our host Shephard Means as he pulls traps with Captain Tony Gross, offloads at Capt. Joe and Sons, and prepares a delicious lobster bake with VInwood Catering aboard the Beauport Princess at Cruiseport. All along the way we learn just how important the lobster is to this community as one of the few sustainable fishing industries left on Cape Ann.

We hope to surpass the success of the first episode featuring clams (seen here:, so if you enjoy episode two please share it with friends!

Nichole’s Family Picks of the Weekend 1/10 and 1/11

Ummmm…..Brrrrrr.   It is kind of hard to think of doing anything other than a mad movie marathon or intense family game day under blankets, sprawled on the living room floor, but here are some ideas.

Want to feel like you are in the tropics, even though we aren’t?

Pick #1 is to visit an indoor garden and it might just help you forget these frigid winter temperatures!

Here are two great choices.

The Tower Hill Botanic Garden in Boylston

While it may be too cold to enjoy some of the outside gardens, there are some gorgeous indoor spaces and you are always welcome to hike around outside as long as you can handle the temps.  Be sure to visit the Limonaia, or Lemon House, and the Orangerie.  The Winter Garden is also not to be missed!

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Or there are the Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses at the Wellesley College Botanic Gardens.

The Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses house the most diverse collection of plants under glass in the greater Boston area.

There are sixteen interconnected greenhouses comprising 7,200 square feet under glass. Many plants in the greenhouses have cultural value as food and spice around the world. Some plants in the greenhouses have historical significance to Wellesley College, the most prominent being the 130-plus year old Durant camellia which came from the founder of the college.

The Desert House showcases cacti and succulents in a series of miniature landscapes, demonstrating a range of adaptations to different desert environments and providing examples of convergent evolution. Larger landscape plantings give a realistic impression of desert plants in nature. Annuals such as desert bluebells are added to enhance the landscape as appropriate. This house is kept cool during the winter months to encourage spring bloom.

The Tropic House is the tallest of the greenhouses, allowing small trees such as palms, cycads and banana to grow in a central in-ground planting area. The house provides a general impression of a tropical forest understory, demonstrating adaptations such as aerial roots and large leaves with drip tips. Vines and lianas are encouraged to grow up appropriate hosts, and epiphytes are grown on trees or simulated trees.

Aerated pools in the Hydrophyte House provide suitable growing conditions for aquatic plants as well as plants adapted to wet root zone conditions, such as mangroves and papyrus. A range of water-loving plants, from floating aquatics to rooted emergents to floodplain species, is demonstrated in and around these unique pools.

Other houses and collections include the Seasonal Display House, Mabel A. Stone Cryptogam (Fern) House, Warm Temperate House, economic plant collection, caudiciform collection, sensory plant collection, and carnivorous plant collection.



Pick #2

Need to shake off the chill?  Try the pot….The Melting Pot, that is.

I have such fond memories of fondue family nights spent hanging over our mustard yellow super 70s fondue pot!  While this experience may be slightly more modern than my memories (and more than a wee bit more expensive) it is worth it for a fun treat!  There are locations in Bedford/Burlington and in Boston’s Back Bay.

turtle-course(1) cheese-fondue


Pick #3 

To help take care of some of that holiday excess that you may have enjoyed….

Hit the gym.  The Metrorock Climbing Gym

“Climbing for the Day” passes are $20 for adults, $10 for children under 7, and FREE for children under 4.

There are locations in Newburyport and Everett.


Fisher Cat In Ipswich Photo From Mike Doody

Joey on the way to work from Ipswich this morning I saw this lying beside the road near Foote Bros Canoe and as I went by new it was the elusive Fisher Cat. I turned around to go back and grab a quick photo as did another driver who told me he lost six of his chickens over the weekend likely by the same animal.  Living in Ipswich I have heard them at night and have also caught a glimsp of one or two. Thought you would like. Have to work on the photography skills though.