A spunky female Hooded Merganser was seen for a day, skittering about Eastern Point. Don’t you love her cinnamon-colored feather-do? Her crest looked especially beautiful when she swam into sunlit areas.

Sightings of Hooded Mergansers nesting in Massachusetts are on the rise. Like Wood Ducks, Hooded Mergansers nest in tree cavities. The natural reforestation of Massachusetts over the past one hundred years has increased nesting habitat. And too, Hooded Mergansers have benefitted from nesting box programs designed  to encourage Wood Duck nesting.

Hoodies eat crustaceans, fish, and insects. As water quality in Massachusetts has improved so too has the prey population increased. Additionally, the statewide recovery of North American Beavers has increased nesting habitat for many species of birds, including Hooded Mergansers and Wood Ducks.

I looked for the little Hoodie on subsequent days, but only saw her that one afternoon. The photos included here, of a singular male, were taken in Rockport in 2016.

Male Hooded Merganser (and Mallard), Rockport Harbor

Watch as the one-day old Hooded Merganser ducklings skydive to the forest floor, from a nest cavity five stories high up a tree.


Hooded Mergansers, like Cowbirds, often lay their eggs in other bird’s nests, including other Hooded Mergansers. Although a female Hoodie can lay up to 13 eggs, in one nest 44 Hooded Merganser ducklings hatched!

Hooded Merganser Range Map


Lookin’ Good Mr. Swan!

Mr. Swan busking, a thing swans do to look twice as large and threatening.

Cape Ann’s beautiful blue-eyed swan is doing quite well especially considering he is at least 28 YEARS OLD. It is highly unusual for a Mute Swan to live that long. Wild Mute Swans live on average eight to twelve years. In captivity, they can live up to 40 years, but our Mr. Swan hardly lives the cushy life of a Queen’s swan.

He is only occasionally a little gimpy on his bad leg. Mr. Swan still manages to rule most of Cape Ann’s waterways, from the Annisquam River to Rockport Harbor, and everything in between.

Rock On, Mr. Swan!

Just Sold! Charleen McCarthy Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Cape Ann Home

Have a home to sell? Let me be your Real Estate Agent and get a SOLD sign in your front lawn!

Blog pic JUST SOLD! 4 Patricia Rd. Danvers

Salem News Online AdMarketing 5 Stanwood Pt. UBJUST LISTED. 5 STANWOOD POINT UNIT B GLOUCESTER, MA $899,900

Water Front Living at its best! NEW construction where the Little River meets the Annisquam. Beautiful new Townhomes being built. 3 of the 4 units are SOLD, with Unit B the last until the next phase of several others duplexes are built. SPECTACULAR PANORAMIC WATER VIEWS and low maintenance living in this spacious 3 Bdrm., 3 1/2 bath LUXURY condominium offering THREE finished levels. Walk into the bright open kitchen w/ breakfast nook and dining area, LR w/ fireplace, a 1/2 Bath and French Doors leading you to the deck with breathtaking views of the RIVER. The 2nd flr. offers 2 Bdrms. with en-suite baths and a Laundry Room. Finished lower level with…

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Have you shopped at Sadie Green’s?

Sadie Green’s, next to Walgreen’s in Gloucester, is a fabulous store to shop.  They carry lots of earrings and jewelry, scarves, shawls, cards, mittens and hats, etc.  There was also 50% when I went in on Wednesday.  Stop on by.

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Installation views of Geoffrey Bayliss Harvest series- art show opens Nov 17 Jane Deering Gallery


Fun Saturday downtown- The artist’s Harvest series opens at Jane Deering Gallery at Pleasant Street and Middle Street, on the same day as CAFM’s Harvest market and the Sargent House’s 2018 Middle Street Harvest Festival.

from Jane Deering Gallery-

Jane Deering Gallery is pleased to present The Art of Geoffrey Bayliss, November 10-December 10 with an Open Reception Saturday November 17th from 1:00-4:00pm at 19 Pleasant Street, Gloucester. The artist’s latest work — two suites of unique linocut prints — will be on view in the exhibition titled Harvest.  Blue Harvest, a series of 13 prints in beautiful color, and the companion series, Red Harvest, achieve a range of complexity emblematic of the reductive technique. Accompanying the new prints is a flock of highly inventive papier-mâché birds, fresh from the studio and ready for new destinations. These delightful objects are the result of explorations in papier-mâché by Bayliss and artist/printmaker Coco Berkman with whom Bayliss continues to study. The artist has generously offered to donate his proceeds from the sale of these works-in-progress to The Open Door/Cape Ann Food Pantry.

Bayliss, a native of Gloucester, holds a BA in architecture from Columbia University. He has studied with artist Celia Eldridge, sculptor John Bozarth, printmaker Coco Berkman, and artist Charlotte Roberts.  His work is held in numerous private collections in the US.  This is the artist’s 3rd solo show with Jane Deering Gallery. The gallery will be open Saturday & Sunday 1-4pm, November 10 – December 10, and by chance or appointment at 917-902-4359,, 19 Pleasant Street, Gloucester, MA. 01930.


Nicole Dahlmer pre-holiday pop up

nicole dahlmer.jpg

Nicole Dahlmer, a Gloucester based photographer, announces a pre holiday pop-up:

Please join me for a pre-holiday pop-up hosted at The Dahlmer Household on Sunday, Nov 18th, 5:30-7:30pm. Guests will have a chance to stock up on my greeting cards before the holidays & before any other fall/winter events I am participating in. There will be light refreshments available. 


For the Love of Hockey

For a few years now you have been subjected to reading my thoughts about Thatch and Finn’s hockey experiences with Cape Ann Youth Hockey.  There is, after all, a lot to say….or, I suppose, write about.  Rites of passages, teammates, championships, early mornings, smelly gear, miles of travel, scheduling nightmares, learning opportunities, goals, assists, penalties, wins, losses and laughs…lots and lots of laughs.

Through it all, the highs and the lows, shines the Sal Grasso Memorial Friendship Tournament. It’s a big deal with Cape Ann Youth Hockey Nation….and this past weekend was the 26th annual.

Since 1987, Cape Ann Youth Hockey teams have been playing in this tournament against Westmount teams from Quebec. The tournament alternates home ice. Two years ago the maroon and white caravanned to Montreal and enjoyed three days of hockey over the border. Last year, the Westmount teams came to us.  Then again, in turn, this same time last week Cape Ann families started the trek north.

Some left on Wednesday, some Thursday, and others finally on Friday.  Some made pitstops in Burlington, Vermont, some stopped to visit family along the way, and others checked in early to catch a Canadiens game at the Bell Center.  All, however, were united in the children’s love for the game…and, if I do say so myself, their commitment to foster that passion and turn it into memories to last a lifetime.  Martyrs we are not, however….for most of us were also united in having a really good time for ourselves.  No doubt we all get a kick out of watching our children take the ice (over and over again) especially in Canada, but we get just as much of a kick out of team dinners, yummy cocktails, and late night hours in the hotel lounge.  The Westmount Tournament is a perfect balance of all of the above.

Sportsmanship, friendship, and teamwork are at the heart of it all, but both countries will tell you that winning is nice too.  The Westmount teams, unbelievably, took the trophy for the tournament’s first 14 years in a row!  Since then, Cape Ann has won seven and Westmount four…well, now five.  This year the competition was neck and neck, but in the end Westmount was victorious by just a couple of games.

While Cape Ann was sad to leave the trophy behind, we are all looking forward to next November already. We will be back on home ice, ready to make new memories and regain possession of that prize.

Thank you to the organizers, volunteers, and coaches.  Thank you for the time, effort, and hours you put in every day, but especially during the time leading up to and during the very special Westmount Tournament.  For the love of the game, for the love of hockey, and for the love of our hockey families. Until next year.


The Cape Ann/Westmount Friendship Tournament was started back in 1987 by Sal Grasso of Gloucester and Mike Deegan and Peter Wallace of Westmount when Sal paid for a bus out of his own pocket and took a crew of Gloucester kids 6 hours north to play some hockey.  The trek was a huge success as most players billeted with host families and formed bonds that continue to this day. When Sal passed in 2006 the Tournament was aptly re-named the Sal Grasso Memorial Tournament.



Sandy Point State Reservation

We discovered Sandy Point on our trip to Parker River Wildlife Refuge recently by following the Parker River road all the way out to the end.  It is certainly an interesting place to visit! It’s small and littered with driftwood and other washed up paraphernalia, but has a “peaceful easy feeling”.


T Launches for upcoming weekend work

T launches for upcoming weekend work

New page consolidates major work into one, concise location

On November 9, 2018, the MBTA announced the launch of, a customer-focused webpage that details major weekend rail service changes in one, simplified format. With infrastructure investments underway across the system, the page is an attempt to simplify trip-planning throughout all of the various construction projects.

This new page is for customers who use the T differently on weekends than they do on weekdays, and who might be unaware of weekend diversions in places that they’re less familiar with. The content is intended to inform customers of planned service disruptions on the T’s subway and light-rail systems, as well as on the commuter rail network.

“Rebuilding the T starts with making investments in our core infrastructure. We acknowledge that our targeted plan to invest in track, signals, and power will cause some disruptions, but the end result will be major improvements in our ability to deliver a safe and reliable service our customers can depend on,” said MBTA General Manager Luis Manuel Ramírez. “For our customers whose weekend travel takes them on lines they don’t use every day, offers a clear and concise answer to the question of what do I need to know?”

As the MBTA continues to execute on its five-year, $8 billion capital investment plan, these investments will inevitably cause some changes to regularly scheduled service. The T’s five-year CIP places heavy emphasis on making core system upgrades to areas such as track, signals, and power systems. Given the nature of this work, and to maximize the amount of time required to make these investments, the T schedules much of this work overnight and on weekends.

“While we understand service disruptions can be inconvenient to our customers, we need to strike the right balance between accelerating system investments and continuing to move our customers when they need us the most,” said MBTA Deputy General Manager Jeffrey Gonneville. “Weekend work allows us the longest window of time to advance these key investments which could not otherwise move forward without disrupting regular service during periods of high ridership.” will be updated on a weekly basis and will provide details of the work underway, the location, service alternatives during weekend diversions, and an estimate of the work’s duration. For larger-scale projects, the site will also provide deeper context of a particular project’s scope, timeframe, and the ultimate benefits T customers will experience.

Thank you for riding the T.

Staying Focused ~

Cape Ann Wellness

Ayurveda Wellness Healing knows the importance to calm in ones life, is staying focused.

Sticking to a planned “to do” list will help one stay focused and avoid mental, physical and emotional balance in ones body.

Each morning jot down the things that you need to get done and be reasonable. If you do not accomplish all on the list then give yourself permission to move it to the top of tomorrows list!

“Blockage is disease/Flow is health”


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Free admission, cider & donuts at the Sargent House Museum for Middle Street Harvest Festival

Cape Ann Community


Join the Sargent House Museum to celebrate Middle Street Harvest Festival!

Where: The Sargent House Museum, 49 Middle Street, Gloucester

When: Saturday, November 17, 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Come in from the cold to enjoy the hospitality of the Sargent House. Enjoy cider and donuts in the 1782 home of Judith Sargent Murray, a pioneering advocate of women’s rights. Explore the first floor of this historic Georgian mansion, preserved with the help of Judith’s great-great nephew, the artist John Singer Sargent. Open to all; FREE admission and treats.

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