Visiting my friends at Marshall’s Farm stand

I love visiting the Alpacas at Marshall’s Farm stand in Gloucester.  These cuties are friendly and very smart.  When I was over there on Wednesday they were chowing down on an a Christmas Tree.  Alpacas love them.

Here a couple of photos of these cuties.

This is Buttercup she a the mom of Hoppy who was born last June.

Cutie Frankie, she actually gives kisses

Loving the Christmas Tree.

Mother Goose genius design | 1938 rotating sculpture by artist Richard H. Recchia and Sam Hershey WPA mural Rockport Public Library #RockportMA

The Rockport Public Library maintains a wonderful art collection. When visiting the temporary Once Upon a Contest: Selections from Cape Ann Reads in the children’s room and the special Betty Allenbrook Wiberg installation, don’t miss the genius Mother Goose 1938 bronze by Richard H. Recchia, and the Sam Hershey WPA-era mural, Rockport Goes to War, 1939.

The new Josh Falk mural (2019) is behind the Rockport Public Library.

Genius design bronze by Richard H. Recchia, Mother Goose, 1938

at the Rockport Public Library

This impression is annotated by the artist as a “sketch model sculpture by R. H. Recchia” (1888-1983). The sculpture rotates to illustrate the rhymes and beautifully expresses how children are captivated by stories. The sculpture is a tribute to his wife, Kitty Parsons (1889-1976), artist & writer, and one of the original founders of Rockport Art Assoc. It was originally situated within the library’s former smaller digs: the Rockport’s Carnegie Library established in 1906, a Beaux-Arts beauty around the corner, now a private home. It was one of 43 Carnegie libraries built in Massachusetts.  In 1993 the library moved to its current site in an 1880s mill building, the Tarr School, thanks to the Denghausen bequest.

Parsons & Recchia resided and worked at their home “Hardscrabble” at 6 Summer Street in Rockport. (Rockport was their permanent address from 1928 till his death.) Recchia was born in Quincy. His dad was a stone carver from Verona who worked for Bela Pratt and Daniel Chester French. Later, Recchia was Pratt’s assistant.

For more bas relief examples by Recchia, see his Bela Pratt in the Yale collection, digitized entry here ) Recchia public sculptures are on permanent display at the Rockport Art Association & Museum. More photos below.

snippet video of Recchia Mother Goose sculpture rotating


click/double click on photos to enlarge photos to actual size (or pinch and zoom) | hover to read caption

Sam Hershey WPA mural, 1939

Sam Hershey Rockport Goes to War featured Rockport Public Library; W. Lester Stevens WPA mural Preparing Rockport for Granite dating from the same year is across the street in the Post Office

Samuel F. Hershey WPA era mural 1939 at Rockport Public Library Rockport Mass. ©c ryan

Samuel F. Hershey Rockport Art Assoc catalogue members from 1940

Stevens 1939 mural Rockport Mass post office
W. Lester Stevens 1939 mural in Rockport Post Office

Josh Falk street mural outside

Josh Falk 

Once Upon a Contest

is displayed on the same floor as Recchia and Hershey works February 3 –  February 29, 2020.

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Once Upon a Contest exhibit of children’s picture books is presented by the four libraries of Cape Ann with support from Bruce J Anderson Foundation | The Boston Fund . In this photograph, carved box by Lars and Betty Wiberg. Illustration by John Plunkett for Prince of Winter on left and illustration of dog by Mary Rhinelander on right.


Nichole’s Picks 2/15 + 2/16

Pick #1: New England Boat Show

The annual Progressive New England Boat Show is coming up NEXT weekend.  The show runs from February 8th-16th at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.


Children 12 and under are still free of charge with the purchase of adult tickets.  Adult tickets are currently $14 and will be $16 at the door.   Also poke around for a Groupon.  This link is not active yet, but may be soon.

Did you know that in addition to seeing all of the pretty sweet boats and water craft, the boat show has a pretty thorough schedule of seminars to attend and activities to participate in?

Navigate your way around the website above to see some of what is offered!




Pick #2: Merrimack Eagle Festival 

February 15, 2020


Lots of information available on-line


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Pick #3: “Zombies 2” at the North Shore Mall


Saturday, February 15, 2020 


Lower Level Nordstrom Wing

Change is coming to Seabrook. Check out who’s shaking things up with new music, crafts and photo opps to celebrate the new Disney Channel Original Movie ZOMBIES 2!

From Boston Central

Northshore Mall invites the community to a ‘ZOMBIES 2’ event, aimed at entertaining and delighting children of all ages.

The event will take place on Saturday, February 15th from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

During the event, families will be able to participate in a variety of activities including; a craft project to create their own ‘ZOMBIES 2’ sling bag, an exclusive photo opportunity, various giveaways, select retail participation and more!

The fun starts in the Lower Level Nordstrom Wing.

This event does not include live character appearances.

Disney’s ‘ZOMBIES 2,’ the highly anticipated sequel to the Disney Channel Original Movie ‘ZOMBIES,’ is a music- and dance-filled story that picks up as cheerleader Addison and zombie football player Zed are readying for Seabrook High’s Prawn, the school’s super-sized prom.

However, the arrival of a new group of outsiders – mysterious werewolves – threatens to shake up Seabrook’s newfound peace and causes a rift in Zed and Addison’s budding romance.

‘ZOMBIES 2’ premieres Friday, February 14 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on Disney Channel.

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As always, for a comprehensive list of family activities, please visit our friends at North Shore Kid. 

Blast from the Recent Past

I’ve been going through older photo albums (yes, I have such things) looking for something and I ran across some pictures of our trips to Gloucester in 2003 and 2004. The sharp-eyed among you will notice a few differences just in the past 16-17 years in these iconic scenes. I hope you enjoy this little trip down recent memory lane!

Lanes Cove Spring 2003Paint factory May 2004

Gloucester community garden & backyard garden applications are OPEN!

Cape Ann Community

Do you want to garden in Gloucester this year? Backyard Growers is offering two programs to help low- to moderate-income families and seniors grow their own fresh, healthy produce and connect with their communities.  Read on for more information.


 Join a community garden.

Every year, the team at Backyard Growers helps Gloucester residents put fresh food on their tables by managing community gardens in public parks, public housing developments, and at community organizations all over Gloucester.

Participants receive a garden bed as well as free and reduced cost access to our gardening trainings, cooking workshops, seeds, and seedlings, plus support from a garden mentor to help them develop their green thumb.

Click here to download a community garden application.

20190713_092411Apply for a Backyard Garden! 

In 2019, Backyard Growers focused its Backyard Garden Program on low- to moderate-income older adults, providing each participant with a raised garden bed in their own…

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